|View single post by luke|
|Posted: 12-05-2005 05:40 pm||
| Why did I buy a Jensen Healey?, good question, it was November 1973,right at the peak of the gas shortage. If you wanted to get gas you had to get up early and get in line, all the station attendants wore side arms and everyone seemed to be in a foul mood. I needed something that got good milege, and I always prefered good handling over raw speed, I found #12793 at Overseas Motors in Dallas and picked it up right after the Thanksgiving holidays.
I know a lot of people had major problems with their Healeys, but mine was very reliable, I put tens of thousands of miles on it here in Texas,drove it out to California twice and in '75, I put it on a Matson cargo ship from Oakland to Hawaii for a year. Never had any problem with it, except that when I shipped it back to California some bozo on the ship ripped the exhaust off unloading it,but it was ok, Matson put me up in the Hyatt until they got it repaired and then I drove it back to Texas with no problems.
It's had a couple of accidents over the years, nothing major, just fender benders. When a friend of mine slid it into curb,we rebuilt the suspension with stiffer springs,konis and sway bars. Once I spun it out on a sharp cuve and hit the curb backwards, the rear left wheel snapped off and the car slid on it to a stop,we had it back on the road the next day,I still use the broken spindle as a door stop.
We upgraded over the years,the usual; cams,dellortos,larger radiator w/ electric fan,remote oil filter,electronic ignition, steel braided hoses,ect. It has 40,000 miles since the last rebuild. I really don't know the exact milege,the odometer is at 199,900 miles and I went for a long time without one in the 70's so it's somewhere between 250-300K.
The car looks great now, it's white with the factory hardtop,which I had sanded down and painted to match the car. Theres no rust and the interior is basically new; seats, door panels,carpet, fully upholstered top with new seals. There is not a dent on the car, both bumpers are perfect and the hood is not creased ( I drove it one night without latching the hood,at about 40mph it folded back against the windshield,that was fun,but not as fun as when I forgot the hardtop was not bolted down and it came off at about 60 just like the roof panel on Bond's DB )
Of course,the wiper-flasher-light switch is toast,all those plastic pieces just disintegrated.
The car was running fine but unfortunately I was not,so it has been in the garage for about three years now,but we may get it on the road again, needs a clutch and a tune up; but I have just been having way too much fun on my ST1300.
Fortunately, my good friend and mechanic for the last 30 years runs a Lotus repair shop, we have all the tools and spare parts; so we can get it going if we decide to do it, but it has become a low priority for now. If I don't get it back on the road ,or even if I do; I may go ahead and list it for sale here; hey 32 years and 300,000 miles is a good run, it's become painfully obvious that I will wear out before the Healey does and I would really like it to go to someone who appreciates fine old Brish cars.