It’s been two years since I purchased this little thing and it’s been a rough and tumble kind of experience, but it’s something I’d never change or take away from myself.
But I had a really disconcerting thought this afternoon. I have a very unusual assortment of romances in my life. I’ve never realized that of all of the cars I aspire to: own, modify, take care of, and drive, are considering in all cases, the most unreliable cars in the world. Reliability is subjective. If it is a car that’s not driven often, it’s probably for good reason. Reliability in my mind is something that’s on a graduating scale of automotive perfection. It’s something I’ve been learning to strive for often on the side of the road or in the presence of a tow truck driver.
After nearly now two years of being a caretaker of this fine British automobile, I have poured more money, sweat, blood and tears into this project to make it work the way I truly believe it should work rather than the way it’s been perceived to be. Speaking mainly about the rather outdated view of: shoddy electronics, wiring, and being a general pig of a diagnostic nightmare of a money pit trash can full of rust. In actual fact, every winter it does become a bit lighter.
It’s idiosyncrasies are what I feel like make it definitely mine, you know the kind I’m talking about. The odd rattle here and there at certain speeds, the creek of the wooden dash on a cold morning commute, the still frustrating squeal of the 145 section front tires when I have to scrub off cornering speeds.
The best thing from my point of view about the future in the context of this old, often unreliable British cars is that modern technology will save the love of my life. As I type, I have hopefully coming in the following weeks a fully built, brand new, customized and durable wiring harness being made specifically for my mini in it’s hometown by a classic mini wiring specialist.
I can’t tell you how excited it makes me feel to be able to take something that’s famous for being difficult to use and or unreliable and resto-mod it into the 21st century. This is partially why from an engineering point of view I’m so fascinated with cars like the Eagle Speedster or the Singer 911. Maybe in the future one day, I’ll be a able to start my own version of Singer only for classic minis.
We want the old-school, old-world look and feel with the modern reliability and drivability. The whole aspiration of this project is so I can keep my funky siamese port 1275 inline four, I can keep my beautiful at full tap SU-HIF Carburetor, I can keep my bespoke and hand made four on the floor with it’s sweet and well machined gated feel and all of these wonderful things that are encompassed inside my 5 x 10 foot box, running flawlessly in harmony.
You’ll always be worth the sweaty equity.
Happy Birthday Mini.