How i bought my car

In 1985 I went to England in order to find a TVR M car. After some searching with the help of Exchange and Mart I found a car at David Gerald, the car that was a 1600M was then in quite bad shape and they had to patch up the petrol tank as it was leaking badly and the electrical system did not work at all. After some fiddling around they made it work good enough so I could take a test ride, the car felt good and David Gerald promised to fix the petrol tank and the electrical system so I should be able to drive the car back to Sweden without problems, or so I thought... anyway the car was cheap and my idea had been from the beginning to buy something I could do a full renovation on and this one was ideal.

David Gerald was then located in Redditch outside Birmingham and on the last day before I should leave England and head back to Sweden I travelled to Redditch by train, Gerry Jinks met me at the train station and we went to their show room. The car was there and it started without problems, the petrol tank was not leaking and all electric things worked on the car, so far so good!.

I started on my journey back to London. It should be mentioned that this actually was my first time in England so I had no experience of English roads or how to drive on the left side of the road. Anyway, I started from Birmingham at around three PM and as soon as I found the main roads it was no real problems until I started to approach London, I had bought a map over Britain and I knew I should take the London circular road south in order to get to my hotel that was located in Bayswater close to Hyde park. Of course I took the London circular road to the north instead of south and as the sun was going down I was getting more and more lost in London.

When I was driving I also started to experience problems with the electrical system and soon nothing worked except the parking lights and the ignition. Now I was experiencing the heavy London evening traffic and after a while of sitting in a traffic jam steam started to come out from under the bonnet. I stopped at a petrol station and investigated what the problem was, I found that the engine didn't have a mechanical fan, it was removed and the electrical fan in front of the radiator didn't work at all because of the electric problems.

I borrowed a flashlight from the petrol station attendant and started tracking the fault, I soon found that the fuses in the fuse box was corroded and after some scraping with a knife and some WD40 the electric system worked alright again, (this is actually the only time I have had any problem what so ever with the electric system on this car!)

I finally found my way back to the hotel and managed to get some sleep at the hotel before I should start the second part of my journey, i.e. driving to Harwich where the ferry to Gothenburg was located.

I started early from the hotel and drove to Harwich, except for some difficulty finding the right way out from London I didn't have any problems except that I experienced a knocking sound from the rear end, (more about that later). I arrived at Harwich in good time for the ferry and the crossing to Gothenburg went without any problems.

In Gothenburg I went to the custom and paid custom duty, VAT and a special car tax based on the weight of the car called Acciss that they had in Sweden at that time, (it is now removed) In total I had to pay around 40% of the car price for all these charges.

After leaving the customs I drove to my parents home in Karlstad in the west part of Sweden, a drive of about 250 km from Gothenburg, I didn't have any electrical problems but the knocking sound was getting more and more severe, I arrived to my parents late in the evening and we put the car in my fathers garage over night.

In the morning I started to investigate from where the knocking sound came from, I soon discovered that one of the universal joints in one of the drive shafts had severe play and when I dismantled the drive shaft I discovered that all roller needles on one side of the universal joint had disappeared and the shaft of the universal joint was badly worn down to about half of its original size. My father and I went to a car spare part shop with the joint and they could easily identify it as the same as the ones used in some Volvo's, I bought one and we went back and I mounted in the drive shaft and put the drive shaft back on the car.

After a few days rest I drove the car to Stockholm where I lived at the time and started to plan The renovation.

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Created on ... december 17, 2000