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TR-6's. Love'm? Hate'm?

135

Comments

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,323
    edited March 2011
    I guess if you want your British sports car to look like a Camaro, yeah, they're fine,

    image

    Perhaps if I painted them a satin silver of the proper period color, I could live with them.

    I always liked the Rostyle wheels on British cars, but the stock ones are quite lovely:
    image

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  • parmparm Posts: 723
    If I wanted a TR6 to look like a Camaro, I'd put a hockey stick paint stripe on it along with a set of Chevy SS wheels. I think putting Panasport wheels on a Camaro is trying to make it look like a British sports car. ;)
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,323
    edited March 2011
    Chrome Panasports on a TR6 is like chrome wire wheels on a Camaro. It clashes like cymbals in my head. :shades:

    Yep there are SO many ways to improve a TR6:

    image

    or better yet:
    image

    :) :) :)

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  • texasestexases Posts: 5,647
    Shifty, you might want to zoom in on the picture of the offending TR6. I think those Panasports have polished rims and painted centers, no chrome. Nice and shiny, though!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,323
    edited March 2011
    Would be nice to paint the whole wheel but anything is better than chrome I agree.

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  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,785
    I'm just waiting for someone to throw on fender skirts and hang a continental kit on a Trumph! ;)
  • parmparm Posts: 723
    Wow, I never thought this subject would incite such a wave of controversy. OK, maybe not a wave. A ripple? LOL! Gentlemen, it's not like we're talking about an Impala SS 409 or something equally sacred. TR6's are a dime a dozen. Given there is an exponential number of bone-stock concourse-restored examples at every Triumph meet, surely the world has room for a TR6 that varies slightly from the factory color chart or wheels.

    I'm somehow not getting my point across very well. In today's world, TR6's are commonly tweaked a bit. Doing so is not a big deal . . . . unless you're gunning for an originality award at a national meet or something. And, if you are, that's totally fine too. Admittedly, maybe deviating from the factory paint color a car was born with is somewhat out of the ordinary (still, hardly sufficient grounds for a court martial), but I happen to love the Diamond White on that TR6 for sale in Arizona I posted earlier. To my eye, that's a tasteful modification. It's not like somebody painted it metal-flake tangerine with purple and green frames with skulls and cross-bones (which I absolutely detest).

    Also, British sport cars with Panasport wheels are as common as their highly documented electrical problems. I would wager there's a higher percentage of TR6's running around with Panasport wheels than there are Camaros with Panasports. BTW, I think the wheels on that blue '69 Camaro shown earlier look pretty cool. Again, to me, that's a tasteful modification that can fairly easily be changed back to stock if so desired.

    Like I said, we're not talking about desecrating the Mona Lisa here. It's been well documented in this forum on numerous occasions that Europeans are not hung up on having their classic cars being numbers matching. I see very little difference with a TR6 here on U.S. soil. Someone please educate why I'm wrong. :confuse: Keep in mind I'm battle-hardened from having two teenage kids and a wife who frequently point out when I'm wrong. So, feel free to be brutally honest with me. I can take it. :P
  • lemmerlemmer Posts: 2,676
    I love Panasports, but loathe chrome wheels. Highly polished is ok on newer cars but often looks kind of odd on older cars.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,785
    I don't think your way of thinking is "wrong" and I don't totally disagree with you. There IS room in the world for modified cars. They just don't really appeal to ME or to some others.

    I don't mind the Retro-Mod cars either but I perfer my cars to be as faithful to the original as possible.

    I want my 1957 Chevy to have a 283 with either a stick or a Powerglide. I KNOW it would run better with a modern "crate" engine and a TH 400 transmission. I know it would stop better and be safer with a disc brake and dual master cylinder conversion.

    Yes, I will definatly drill holes and install seat belts.

    And, I'll DRIVE it like the 54 year old car it is. I won't throw it around corners and I won't drive it 80 MPH. I'll make sure I allow a lot of room between me and the car in front of me.

    As long as the mods can be reversed if desired, I really don't have a problem. Panasport wheels can be swapped out with the factory wheels can't they?

    One thing I really don't like are non factory colors on cars but that's just me!
  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,005
    Funny thing, I do throw my fintail around corners and I do drive it 80mph ;)

    I too don't like too many mods. Colors and wheels are big for me as well, along with weird velour upholstery, odd steering wheels, etc.

    Usually the old MB to run away from is one with weird wheels.
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,676
    "Keep in mind I'm battle-hardened from having two teenage kids and a wife who frequently point out when I'm wrong"

    So, you can answer this question...if a man (or a husband) is alone in the forest, surrounded by no one for 100 miles, and makes a statement, is he still wrong???
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,323
    I really don't have any strong objection to different wheels but I agree that bright chrome is completely unsuitable for a vintage British sports car; also, in the case of the TR6 you showed us, so much about that car is wrong that the wheels are the least of my problems with it. Depending on how you look at it, some of the "mods" would be quite difficult to reverse. I find it mildly blasphemous.

    Also, while not a "rare" car, the TR6 is not really a dime a dozen. They only made 94,000 of them, far less than the MGB, and less than the Austin Healey Sprite. Given the low survival rate, I would imagine that no more than maybe 5,000 cars remain in various stages of repair.

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  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,785
    edited March 2011
    Wow...that's all? I would have thought they made more than that!

    Another story...As a kid working in a gas station one of our customers got drafted into the Army and had to sell his mint TR-3 very quickly and he did!

    Two days before he was to be shipped out, hs buyer backed out and he had to sell it immediatly! He told me I could have it for 300.00. As a 16 year old, I already had a car or two and I probably didn't have the 300.00 either so I passed.

    I also was offered the same 1958 Edsel that Cindy Williams drove in the movie American Grafitti for 200.00 and I passed on that one too. After all, it was an EDSEL!
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 15,064
    I loved these when I was a kid. Just seemed to be the perfect sports car back in the day. Still like them now, and if I found myself with the itch (and the cash) to get some kind of classic/toy car, it would be high on the list.

    Back in 1990, i moved into a new neighborhood. About 2-3 years in, I was pushing my son around in his stroller, and discovered a guy about 6 houses up was working on a car.

    turned out to be a TR-6 that he was restoring in his garage (just a normal 2 car in a tract house). And he was all-in. stripped to the frame, every nut/bolt off. He even media blasted it in there. Never did see the final product, and have no idea how long it took )or if he was successful), but he was serious about it!

    I also came close to buying a TR-7 at about the same time frame. Saw one local (private sale) that was actually very nice. It was a black convertible, "spyder" model. really showed well, and drove nice. Believe it was listed at about $2000. Chickened out on it though.

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (mine)

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,323
    Well lucky you, that you passed on the TR7. :lemon: :lemon: :lemon:

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  • stickguystickguy Posts: 15,064
    well, based on the few others I saw, this was a really nice one! And i guess a "special" model.

    now, I think it smacks of a car that would be much better off with an engine transplant. maybe something that didn't blow head gaskets every year or so?

    wonder what engine would fit in there (other than a Rover V8, unless that required more extensive mods to make a TR-8).

    when in doubt, drop in a rotary. They always fit!

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (mine)

  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,785
    edited March 2011
    That "Rover" V-8 is actually an engine used in 1961-1963 Buick Specials. Buick had troubles with them and dropped them after three years.

    Leave it to the Brits to pick up an engine like that. Amazing that they used that tiny 215 Cubic Inch engine in big Land Rovers for years!

    Yep, you dodged a bullet all right.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,323
    The Rover (Buick) V8 is a pig, or *was* a pig at the time of the TR8 (the Brits have since bored it out, redesigned it upteen times and it finally was respectable, if gas hungry). So really, any minivan could smack a TR8 silly. This was no Cobra and no Tiger. This was a pussycat.

    However, people do *breath* on TR8s to get them to go faster, but really, if you want a faster car, go buy a faster car. Get a Tiger, be happy.

    A Mazda rotary would be a good swap. I've seen them put into MGBs and the result was splendid. I've also seen Volvo B18 and B20 engines used in British cars---these are very sturdy engines but really don't perform any better.

    Personally I think a TR7 is hopeless and unfixable. It ranks with the Maserati Bi-Turbo as a car a NASA engineer couldn't live with.

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  • stickguystickguy Posts: 15,064
    series question, but what are the real problems with it that make it such a bad idea?

    I know the engine ears head gaskets. So say you swapped in something reliable like a B20, along with the volvo tranny.

    what is left that will kill you? the electrics? Can't think of much else, since a TR-7 is still basically pretty simple 60s tech. Not much power or too fancy.

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (mine)

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,323
    Well that's a lot of work to put into a car that is basically worthless in the marketplace.

    e.g.: TR7 FOR SALE---$625

    And really, the build quality is so poor. I just don't see this as a viable project. They should save one TR7 for history and just let the rest of them die, if you ask me.

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  • parmparm Posts: 723
    edited March 2011
    Been submersed in the TR6 culture for the last few weeks. There's quite a loyal and knowledgable contingent out there for these cars and I've been learning quite a bit. In terms of a purchase decision, it essentially boils down to this. Do you want a factory stock, no excuses correct car? OR, do you go the modified route? And, let me tell you, there's a very respectable and well-thought of group who favor the latter - even though I know this group here is quick to dismiss them.

    I'm torn as to which way to go. Obviously, a car can be original only once. And, in theory, you would think the market would put TR6's that are as pure as the driven snow up on a pedestal. But, there's a reason why guys modify these things. They upgrade the suspension bits and pieces, drop in a 5-speed (a pretty common upgrade), install an electronic ignition, put in a stronger differential, a better cooling system and fiddle with the engine and wheels/tires because doing so makes these cars drive/ride MUCH better - not to mention reducing the oil puddes on your garage floor and minimizing your risk of being left stranded by the side of the road. And, what's wrong with that???

    Specifically, I have a line on a very original, 43,000 mile 1974 TR6 who the 2nd owner has owned for the past 26 years and has babied. The paint is original, the seats are original and they look great. While there have been replacements (ie., carpeting, convertible top, some engine bits), they have been done to factory correct standards. Ok, but how long can one maintain a car like this and still drive it? Eventually, its going to reach the fork in the road (stock vs. modified) with respect to how its restored - at which point I might be better off to go ahead and get one that's been modified in a quality way.

    Don't mean to make this longer than necessary, but in weighing the pros and cons above, it occured to me that a 10 year old (or so) Honda S2000 might be something I should consider as a viable alternative. Here's a great example of what I'm talking about - an original 15,000 mile, 2001 model Silver one for $15,500. For that price, you could buy a very decent, but not great (whether its stock or modified), TR6. Plus, you get awesome performance, modern reliability and some creature comforts (leather, nice stereo & A/C) to boot.

    Would LOVE to get some feedback on these issues. And, what about $15,500 for this low mileage and very original S2000??? It's offered by a dealer, so naturally I'm expecting a "gasp". But, keep in mind how original it is and its low miles.
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 15,064
    My BIL has a 1st year model S2000 (one of the first in the US), that is probably even nicer. Absolutely looks like new. Stored winters, almost never sees rain, perfectly maintained. Not sure the miles, but they are low. I drove it when he first got it, and it is a very fun car.

    But, apples to cantaloupes here. Do you want an old "classic" to putz with, show, etc? Or a newish car to use? A TR-6 would compare to a an MGB, Alfa, etc. An S2000 to a Miata, maybe a late Alfa, etc.

    Anyway, my opinion on the originality issue is, if the car is a time warp absolutely authentic museum piece, I would try to keep it that way, especially if you won't be driving it much. But beyond that, I think it only matters if it is a rare/valuable car, unless you plan to get into the "cult of originality".

    since this is a TR-6, not a Hemi 'cuda, Personally I would do the under the skin upgrades to make it a better car (tranny, suspension, cooling, reliablity stuff), but keep the looks stock (as in, no cheesy wheels).

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (mine)

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 15,064
    oh yeah, forgot 1 point.

    Do stuff that can be reversed easily if you want, and keep the old parts!

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (mine)

  • parmparm Posts: 723
    Your apples to cantaloupes point is well taken. Honestly, that's a tough one for me to answer. If I had an S2000, I'd probaby drive it more such as to work, etc. The TR6 would definitely be used to "putz" around with. Don't know which I would enjoy more.

    In the event I would lean toward the Honda, I don't suppose you know if your brother in law would be interested in selling, would he?????? I'm serious.
  • texasestexases Posts: 5,647
    From what I understand, the S2000 is kind of a 4-wheel motorcyle, high-revving, low torque, sounds like the opposite of the TR-6. What do you like?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,323
    edited March 2011
    I have no problem at all with invisible up-grades to a TR6, but not the boy racer stuff--this is a British car after all. In the same way that you don't put fuzzy dice on a Benz or rally lights on a Cadillac, you don't put oversize chrome alloys on a TR6, nor do you pinstripe it with scrollwork, or put on nerf bars, or body cladding. It's simply blasphemous.

    The Honda S2000 requires an entirely different kind of driving than a TR6. The S2000 has little low end torque and to enjoy the car you have to keep it "on cam" constantly. If you don't like attentive, high-revving, frequent shifting driving, then you won't be happy with the S2000. What I mean is, if you are a lazy shifter, this car will torment you. It's like driving a Japanese superbike vs. a Harley. The Harley owner would find the Japanese bike maddening, and the Japanese owner would find the Harley barbaric.

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  • stickguystickguy Posts: 15,064
    Not for sale now, and I told him long ago that I had rights of first refusal! Still mad I did not buy his Integra (gsr? whatever the hot rod model was, in a 4 door) when I had the chance.

    Though he does occasionally get a bug for a 911 turbo or a Cobra kit car, but for now, I suspect he is keeping the Honda for a while.

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (mine)

  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 16,688
    If someone were to put a lot of pizzazz junk on a Healey 3000 or an XK-120 that would be bad but a TR6 just isn't that kind of car. Even back in the day bigger wheels roll bars and extra lights and other boy-racer stuff were commonly added on. It's easy to make the TR6 into a better performing sand better looking car so I say go for it.

    I think Shifty's analysis of the S2000 vs TR6 is entirely correct but he left off one thing. I can still squeeze into a TR6 but there's no way I can squeeze my carcass into the little Honda. That may or may not be relevant to your situation.

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 15,064
    I seem to recall fitting fine in the Honda. My BIL is a beefy guy, not quite as tall as I am (6') and he never complains. Probably not a good idea if you are very "broad of beam" though!

    Nothing like a Miata. That, I didn't fit in at all.

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (mine)

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,323
    edited March 2011
    TR6s will be worth more serious money in 5 (easily $30K +), since we have comparable big jumps in value for the MGBs and Porsche 914s---- so these add-ons will only serve to devalue the car considerably. Even today, a stock TR6 will bring more money than a pimped-out one.

    The argument that people used to modify these cars might have been true, but then people used to put V-8 engines in old Ferraris, chop and slam Ford woodies, and make Chevy Nomads into gassers.

    It...it....PAINS me to see TR6s modified externally, not because the mods are tasteless (which is, after all, subjective opinion) but because it announces that the person doing it is a-historical. It is, in an innocent way, a kind of cultural ignorance to a snob like me.

    To illuminate---have you ever seen a dashing couple dressed in Gatsy-era clothing while driving a 1940s car? This is a-historical. Think of a Civil War enacter wearing a WW I helmet.

    I think with some classic cars, your ownership is a kind of stewardship.

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