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TR8 (fwd) part 2 of 2

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TR8 (fwd) part 2 of 2
« on: January 24, 1992, 03:26:00 PM »
> Forwarded message:
> FWD From: bobh@ (Bob Hodgeson)
> I thought you might be interested to know what actually went into
> the conversion that I did to my TR7 :-
> I took a chance on buying a used Rover 3.5 engine from a breakers
> yard - supposedly with 40000 miles on it - however on stripping the
> block down, found these were probably without an oil change - and I
> had to do a full rebuild. In hindsight it would've be>en cheaper to
> have bought a new short-block - but perhaps not so much fun!
> The machine work was entrusted to a local firm - now RS Race
> Engineering - who built the 3.5V8 engines for the factory TR8 rally
> cars - and the heads and intake manifold were given a thorough
> work-over ( flowed,skimmed & cc'd etc) by another specialist ->
> Jack Pollard.
> The block was bored +030, 9.5:1 Rover Vitesse Pistons installed,
> together with a Piper 292 Cam, Cloyes timing chain, and high volume
> oil pump . The valvetrain was upgraded, with all new components,
> chrome moly pushrods, Rhoades lifters, Rover Vitesse valves and
> uprated valvesprings. Breathing was through an Offenhauser manifold
> and >390CFM 4-barrel Holley. The engine was mated to the original
> TR7 5-speed trans, with the help of a Rover 3500 S stick-shift
> flywheel & bellhousing (which are not easy to find). I also fitted
> a Lumenition opto-electronic ignition system to get some decent
> sparks!.
> The engine was installed using an original TR8 subframe (which is
> still available as a spare part) and by shortening the TR7
> propshaft about 2".  The gearbox crossmember also had to be
> repositioned further to the rear of the car. I used the original
> styl>e Rover engine mount rubbers, with made-up brackets patterned
> on the original factory TR8 Rally cars.
> The radiator was re-cored to provide adequate cooling, and new
> inlet/outlet pipes added to allow standard Rover 3500 hoses to be
> used. The radiator was repositioned by using a TR8 radiator support
> which allows the radiator to be positioned further forward>s &
> lower to clear the engine. Kenlowe electric fans were fitted to
> give some forced draft when needed.
> The exhaust was taken care of by some tubular headers leading to a
> free-flow 2 1/8" dual exhaust, with crossover pipe - to twin
> stainless steel mufflers.
> The engine bay wiring also had to be completely redone to match the
> 3.5 engine, which also has a 12V coil, rather than the TR7 6V -
> plus I had to modify the tachometer electronics to read the correct
> The suspension and brakes were completely renewed - all the
> suspension bushings were replaced with special hard-compound
> versions, uprated springs were fitted all round (which also lower
> the car 1" or so) and SPAX shock absorbers & strut inserts used.
> Fr>ont brakes were replaced with a conversion supplied by Rimmer
> Bros (Triumph specialists) - these are actually re-worked Austin
> Princess units.
> These were OK,(when finally persuaded to fit ) and supposedly
> better than the original TR8 brakes, but there is a vented disc set
> available which would've been better still.
> The rear axle was untouched - retaining the original gear ratio -
> this was a little too much for street use - and If I'd kept the car
> for much longer, would have been altered to limited slip & 3.08
> ratio ( taken from a dead Rover 3500 saloon)- it meant yo>u would
> have to do some fairly slick gearchanges, but accelerated like the
> proverbial rocket, though trimming the top speed by 20mph or so.
> Wheels were traditional slot-mag style Comp-motives - 13x6, fitted
> with 215-60H13 General XP2000 rubber which seemed to be fine.
> Larger rims would've been better, but my finances were a little
> stretched by this time!
> I also fitted a 'Viper' bodystyling kit which fits over the front
> and rear bumpers (you have to remove the original plastic casings)
> which is one of the best styling kits out for the TR7 - it also
> helps keep the car on the roads at those higher speeds..
> If I try all this again, I will probably go for the new Rover 3.9
> Litre injection engine - or else try to locate an Australian 4.2
> litre unit.
> Regards - Bob