The Plan So Far
Ok so stage one is all about making the Coupe go round corners.
SuperFlex Ltd have a range of polyurethane bushes for the Marina. I started with the tie bar bushes and have now fitted the top upright and bottom eye bar bushes, these have helped control the car a lot, particularly the tie bar bushes.
The back spring hanger bushes have also had the polyurethane treatment, the old rubber ones were shot, so anything was an improvement.
|I fancied the rally look as soon as possible, so on went some 13" x 6" Performance Wheels Ltd Superlight alloys from Australia but sourced in Leicestershire http://www.performancewheels.com.au/super_lite_wheels.htm. They look like Minilites but cheaper, you can see the Coupe on the front page of the website, I think the really look the business. I chose silver with a polished rim.|
|Problems though, the inside edge just touched the steering ball joint on full right lock. I had to fit some 5 mm spacers to overcome this. If I were to buy them again then 5 1/2" alloys would overcome it I think. Because the spacers used up wheel stud length, I sourced extended studs to fit. They are unusual in that they are 1/2" shank in the hubs and 3/8" threaded for the wheel nuts. Triumph Spitfire studs are the same and Jigsaw Racing can supply extended studs at a price. I fitted 5 mm extended studs to match the wheel spacers (see below with a comparison to standard).|
The track increase hasn't made an appreciable difference, but the wider wheels and 175/70 13 tyres have transformed the handling, overall definitely worth doing.
Update Nov 2008, as part of my conversion to 4 pot calipers, I have had to go to 14" wheels, I could have bought some 14" versions of the Superlights, but then no-one would have know would they? Just at the same time, I came across a set of Revolution 14" x 6" off a Lotus Elan, the wheels are older than the Marina and I think that they look the mutts nuts - not everyone's cup of tea, but I like them - a lot.
Front and Rear shock absorbers
The front lever arm shocks were pretty knackered, judging by the old bump the wing test. I had read about the BL Special Tuning brackets which allowed you to fit telescopic front shocks as assisters to the lever arms. This sounded really good but where to find them? Steve Bilverstone sold me both some good used top brackets and some new Morris Ital bottom brackets. These mount over the tie bar yoke where it bolts into the bottom arm, BL later used the basic same idea when they fitted the Ital with front telescopic shocks. Great - now what about some shocks.
|The accepted wisdom from
BL Special Tuning was that you drained the lever arms and fitted their
specially rated Koni telescopics. I had a memory that Spax once made
a similar mounting kit for the Marina with their adjustable
telescopics. Spax at first didn't want to help and only through
persisting with them did I find out that the shocker spec should be G7LL http://www.spax.co.uk/SPAX-classic-page.html
I ordered the fronts and rears from Moss Europe by phone, they were very helpful and I had them within 5 days. The fronts were special order so I was quite impressed. I fitted the kit with SuperFlex bushes and stainless steel inserts to finish them off.
To mount them requires late Morris Ital tie bar yokes as they have a longer fixing bolt than the earlier Marina ones.
Spax still list the rear shocks as G632, so in they went too, on their standard rubber bushes.
I sourced a set of GreenStuff pads for the front brakes and had a set of stainless steel flexible hoses made up for the front and rear, you can see one of the front hoses in the picture of the Spax shocker above. The back shoes are fine and the handbrake is OK.
Another Marina-ist told me that he fitted GreenStuff pads to his Marina and then took it out on a charity tour of about 600 miles, they were fine until the big downhill sections, when due to heat build up the brake pistons jammed in the callipers. Hmmm, time for a rethink for rallying then.
Some things just have to be done don't they? I changed the very restrictive OE filter and housing for a rorty K&N filter, it sets off the single 1 3/4" SU nicely, but blew away the mixture setting in the process, ho hum. In the wings I have a pair of ex MGB 11/2" SUs waiting for a refurbishment.
What I have in hand is fitting some stuff to enhance the current driving pleasure. Click Here to find out my immediate plans.