1 2 3
BFH_Garage New Reader
2/3/18 9:10 a.m.

I've lurked here for years and have rarely posted, so I thought I should start a thread on my recent acquisition. I picked up this 1980 British Leyland Mini 1000 a couple weeks ago... It is a recent import from Japan. A mini has been on my automotive bucket list for 20+ years, so I'm really excited to start tinkering on this one. Let me know if you have any pointers/suggestions!

The only negatives of this car are some minor clear coat peeling and the tan interior, I guess an interior swap is always an option. However, it definitely has that 70's/early 80's look to it. 


paul_s0 New Reader
2/3/18 9:21 a.m.

Excellent, a proper mini.  One of those cars I love, and enjoy driving, but never want to own!  Fresh out of university I worked as a mechanic for a mini specialist, and every Monday morning without fail I'd smack my head on the bonnet catch of one 'em.  I shall be following with interest.yes



mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
2/3/18 10:02 a.m.

I like the blue over tan, it's a good look. 

759NRNG Dork
2/3/18 10:35 a.m.

This looks extremely clean........great score!!!

Stealthtercel Dork
2/3/18 10:37 a.m.

Another vote for blue over tan!

BFH_Garage New Reader
2/3/18 4:04 p.m.

I'm pretty sure these tan seats qualify as pretty ugly. The black headrests are removable, they just slide over the seat backs.

The tach has some bounce in the needle, need to figure out how to resolve that issue.


mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
2/3/18 4:07 p.m.

Ok, the seat covers themselves might need a little love, but the blue over tan brightens up the interior a LOT over the typical black black and more black. You need a good plaid with tan and blue for the seats and it woudl be perfect. Maybe it's not awesome currently, but it's right on the edge of awesome. 

DrBoost MegaDork
2/3/18 4:17 p.m.

I miss mine dearly. I'll be watching with interest. 

Knurled. MegaDork
2/4/18 1:35 a.m.

England to Japan to the US?  How about"Around the World In 13,880 Days"? wink


I dig the interior as is.  It screams 1980.

rustyvw Dork
2/4/18 9:23 a.m.

I've been wanting a mini ever since I went to England as a teenager.  I'll be watching for updates.

BFH_Garage New Reader
2/5/18 6:43 a.m.

In reply to mazdeuce - Seth :

Great points. Plaid wasn't something I had considered, but could be cool and still feel "vintage appropriate." It does have nice tan door cards, so perhaps it doesn't make sense to start completely over. I'll have to see if there is a good upholstery place here in sw Virginia. We just moved here in July, so I'm still figuring out the area. Although, I've been to VIR twice to watch some races... priorities?!

BFH_Garage New Reader
2/10/18 6:06 p.m.

Spent a little time working on some basics on the Mini.

The quick removal grill makes accessing the oil filter much easier... except for someone torqued the crap out of it. Ended up having to drop the skid plate and use an extension and a breaker bar to get it lose. The skid plate had a sprinkling of surface rust and some deep gouges on it, so I gave it a quick sand and fresh coat of paint. The gouges are still in there, but I figure it will get beat up later.

The car had these funky bulbs in the headlights. I love yellow headlights, but I've heard Virginia cops are quick to ticket for this, so I pulled the glass yellow covers off and re-installed the plain bulb.

Anyone know what size/type these bulbs are? The are mounted in Cibie lights, the metal base of the bulb is almost 2" in diameter. I assumed they were H4's until I pulled them out... definitely not H4's. Googling the text printed on the bulb didn't help either.

Also wired up a plug for the battery tender. JDM AC Delco battery! I guess the strap was the original battery tie down??? It now has a metal bracket. 

BFH_Garage New Reader
2/22/18 1:10 p.m.

While pulling the air filter housing, I noticed this nasty mess of a gasket for the carb connection... Rubber doesn't last forever!

The only available replacement gasket I could find is round, not oval... I cringed when the description said, "can be heated to stretch and fit oval openings"

So a warm bath was in order and, surprisingly, it fits.

This weekend's project involves more rubber replacement: Motor Mounts

RoddyMac17 Reader
2/22/18 1:38 p.m.

The bulbs are a Lucas P45T style bulb, Moss Motors lists these:



T.J. MegaDork
2/22/18 1:56 p.m.

In reply to BFH_Garage :

Nice looking Mini. I sent you a PM. 

BFH_Garage New Reader
2/22/18 2:31 p.m.

In reply to RoddyMac17 :

Great, thanks for the link!

rob_lewis UltraDork
2/22/18 9:41 p.m.

For the bouncing tach, it might just be a sticking cable in the housing.  If you can remove the cable from the housing (I can't remember if the ends are removable), just clean it and grease it to make it spin easier.  If you can't get the cable out, you can squirt some oil down the cable housing.  Might be an quick fix that's cheaper than a new cable.


RoddyMac17 Reader
2/23/18 9:36 a.m.

For the bouncing tach, it might just be a sticking cable in the housing

The tach in the car appears to be an RVI or RVC type tach, so no cable.  The downside to the tach is the bezel is typically swaged on, so repairing them is a pain.  They are still available new, but are somewhat pricey ( Smiths Tach ).  Unless it's really bothering you, I would just leave it.   Though making sure all the wiring connections are in good shape might cure the problem.

eastsideTim UltraDork
2/23/18 12:21 p.m.

Another possibility is the ignition module.  We replaced that and a rotor in an MG Midget with Smiths gauges recently, and had the side effect of clearing up a bouncing tach.

T.J. MegaDork
2/23/18 4:00 p.m.

Does your bouncy tach say RVI or RVC on the face?

coexist Reader
2/23/18 8:20 p.m.

Granite workbench is pretty high class. Although at first I thought it was mouse stuffing in your airbox.

My mini from long ago was the same color. /oldguy

BFH_Garage New Reader
2/23/18 9:07 p.m.
coexist said:

Granite workbench is pretty high class.

Ha ha... when the wife's away, the clean work moves out of the unheated garage into the kitchen.

Looks like the tach is an RVC, all electric, no cable. 

2/23/18 10:12 p.m.

Nice find, looks very clean!

The seats look like they are out of a 70’s brown mini clubman. 

The battery clamp you have is correct. The other strap is used to hold down a cover that is missing on yours. 

I’m restoring a 1960 Austin mini se7en. 

NOHOME UltimaDork
2/24/18 5:23 a.m.

In reply to coexist :

Funny, I was just thinking the same thing!

JoeTR6 HalfDork
2/24/18 6:36 a.m.

Neat car.  Owning one of these is on my bucket list.  That list keeps getting longer and the runway keeps getting shorter, though.

1 2 3
Our Preferred Partners