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TR7 Replacement Body Panel Project (TR Drivers Club Tooling Fund)

Too many people duplicate work that others already have done ... if you're having something remade then tell us about it! Success and Disasters, they are all useful to know about!
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John_C
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TR7 Replacement Body Panel Project (TR Drivers Club Tooling Fund)

Postby John_C » 13 Sep 2018 11:52

We haven't really gone public on the current TR Drivers Club project for rectifying the situation caused by British Motor Heritage (BMH should not be confused with BMIHT - they are separate, unrelated companies and have been for over 20 years). I was given clandestine information much earlier this year that the all the TR7 tooling they held had been scrapped but it was only when Classic Car Weekly contacted me that I felt the club needed to get all this information confirmed and that is what led to the headline on that weekly classic car paper. At no time did I contact the TR Register (although I did tell them a big TR7 story was about to break) or any other club and this was kept in strictest confidence. As a club we had already made enquiries with regards to panel reproduction and it was obviously the time to take those tentative enquiries further. The upshot is that the TR Drivers Club, with Brian Ridley-Jones as the main driver of this, have been re-importing original Leyland panels to use as patterns for new replacement TR7 body panel manufacture. We are sourcing the earliest original, never been on a car, panels to act as the patterns because these will provide the best fitting new panels possible as the end result. The BMH items were not exactly the best fit ever seen on a TR7 so hopefully this problem will be rectified in the future.

The first panel we are looking at is the front panel, more often known as the headlamp panel or nose panel. This is probably the most major undertaking of the lot as it's a large, double-skinned panel. If we can get that one right then there will be no stopping us from there. The second we are currently looking at is the rear panel which houses the light clusters and goes in between the rear wings, the boot and the bumper. This panel hasn't been available for as long as I can remember. We have obtained new, original, early master panels of both the headlamp and the rear panel.

It will be important to bear in mind that these replacement panels are going to cost significantly more than we have been used to paying up to now but that the TR Drivers Club are looking to mitigate the final cost as much as possible. They will of course be cheaper to club members but at least they will be generally available to all.

The link to the relevant page from the recent issue of TR Driver is below but more information is coming in the next issue. If anyone wants to get involved in this project by contributing to the tooling fund please get in touch with me. This is a very ambitious and exciting project but it is happening. We have already found our preferred firm to reproduce the panels and we are looking to go down that route asap. We are doing this with the full knowledge and support of both Rimmers and Robsport. It should be noted that both these Triumph dealers have had TR7 panels remanufactured and have a wealth of availability of these panels. We do not want to duplicate anything they have already made available and have on the shelf already.

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John_C
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Re: TR7 Replacement Body Panel Project (TR Drivers Club Tooling Fund)

Postby John_C » 15 Sep 2018 08:55

Rich_K asked me in his front wing thread of the TR7 section of this forum what had gone at BMH to justify them scrapping the press tools along with a few other questions too. Whilst I don't have a definite answer to what went on at BMH (and they're not talking to anyone about it) from what I can ascertain, they scrapped the TR7 press tools when they cleared out their old Blackburn site around ten years ago. There wasn't much demand for TR7 panels so in that respect it was an understandable business decision, albeit a controversial one given the history of how they came to have the press tools in the first place. To not tell anyone is not understandable as something would have been done to save them. Having said that, because the panels coming off those press tools (front wings is what I'm referring to here) were not a particularly good fit, this could actually end up being not such a bad thing after all as we are going to have new panels manufactured from much better patterns. Quite a few TRDC members have banded together to get this project off the ground and have stuck £50 each in the pot. If anyone else wants to volunteer a contribution then please let me know and I will point you in the right direction.

The final products will probably not be cheap but we are mainly looking to mitigate that as much as possible by funding them up to the point of fabrication i.e. funding the patterns and tooling. Members will then get a discount on the subsequent panels from the Triumph dealers who sell them.

I hope that answers everything Rich. If not, give me a prod.
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Rich K
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Re: TR7 Replacement Body Panel Project (TR Drivers Club Tooling Fund)

Postby Rich K » 15 Sep 2018 14:05

Thanks John for your really informative post. Really impressive how you guys are working on resolving the panel situation. I will be happy to contribute.
Rich.
1980 TR7 drophead now repainted and awaiting V8 upgrade
1977 TR7 fixedhead awaiting restoration
1981 TR7 drophead awaiting restoration
Ford Ranger Wildtrak

Beans
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Re: TR7 Replacement Body Panel Project (TR Drivers Club Tooling Fund)

Postby Beans » 16 Sep 2018 17:56

Looking at my spare panels I probably won't need any body panels in the near future!
But it is great to see that you are taking the effort to have panels remanufactured :wink:
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1976 TR7 FHC (currently being restored ...)
1980 TR7 DHC (my first car, a.k.a. Kermette)
1981 TR7 FHC (Sprint engined a.k.a. 't Kreng)

http://www.tr7beans.blogspot.com/

John_C
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Re: TR7 Replacement Body Panel Project (TR Drivers Club Tooling Fund)

Postby John_C » 19 Sep 2018 07:47

Accident damage is what will require the new panels Beans. Plenty of us have panels stored away but it only takes one little mishap and then a spare may no longer be available. These cars are in general not the rusting heaps they once had a reputation for and Robsport have the patch panels available for just about every area where rust can be a problem, so it's accident damage we need to mitigate against. But we will all need to band together on this one from all over the world for it to be an affordable reality to get everything re-made. We're already progressing the headlamp panel but the plan is to go much further and get all the panels available... except perhaps the roof. We'll see how things go and if it is a success then even the roof can be done - I've already discussed it with our current preferred manufacturer.
The Best TR7 & TR8 Documentaries Ever Produced Available Here:
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Re: TR7 Replacement Body Panel Project (TR Drivers Club Tooling Fund)

Postby XSeries » 19 Sep 2018 19:28

:)
is this the forum equivalent of "like"?

Beans
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Re: TR7 Replacement Body Panel Project (TR Drivers Club Tooling Fund)

Postby Beans » 19 Sep 2018 19:29

Keep up to good work :wink:
Image
1976 TR7 FHC (currently being restored ...)
1980 TR7 DHC (my first car, a.k.a. Kermette)
1981 TR7 FHC (Sprint engined a.k.a. 't Kreng)

http://www.tr7beans.blogspot.com/

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