1910 Rover

Like a good wine, vintage Rovers need appreciating

1910 Rover

Postby Dirkco » Sun Nov 29, 2009 4:23 am

Hello All,

So I have found the ultimate barn find or to be honest it has found me. I got a call from a gentleman after he found my website and thought I might be interested in learning about a 1910 Rover his father had gotten in or around 1959. Now this would be a real find in the UK but it is even more incredable that it is the USA. So I drove down to see it and meet the owner and I could not believe what I seeing It appears to be a completely orginal car untouched and in unbelievable condition. On inspection the engine is not seized and does not appear to have a cracked block. It appears to be extremly complete with even Rover tools in the boot. The car has not been running since the early 70s but well kept in a garage since then.

http://s864.photobucket.com/albums/ab210/dirkco/

So I need to some help answering some questions I have on what to do next.

1) After reviewing the pictures does the car look like it has the orginal paint or is it a very old restoration? Pay attention the the wheels they seem to good to be orginal but then again they could have well taken care of.

2) What precations should be taken before attempting to start the car?

3) Should this car be restored? If it is orginal paint I have concerns about that as it is truly a bit of history. On the otherhand will it be cared for properly in the future if it is not given a proper restoration?

So I am looking to hear from anyone who cares to comment

Dirk
In the States
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Re: 1910 Rover

Postby paul williams » Sun Nov 29, 2009 11:23 am

Hi Dirk,
what a find! as you say it's incredible enough to find one in the UK never mnd in the USA.

I think it is a 1910 8HP with the option hood and screen
Image

This is a 6HP from 1910 showing the screen, as you can see its identical to the one you have.

Image

I am pretty sure the scuttle petrol tank confirms it as an 8HP

If it is an 8HP it should have the following spec.
Single cylinder 114mm bore 130mm stroke
A Rover automatic choke
Contracting Brakes on rear wheels operated by right hand pedal
Internal expanding brakes on rear wheels operated by external lever
Left pedal is an engine brake

According to the catalogue the body was:
"painted dark green , picked out in black and lined in green "
also:
Track 4ft 1 inch
Overall length 10 feet.
Wheelbase 7 feet


I hope that helps you identify what you have.

As for the engine I would hesitate before trying to start it, I resisted the temptation with my 1929 car and have since been told be the engine restorer that it was just as well. This of course depends on the history of the car, do you know when it was last run, was that 1959? I still think you are going to have to spend some time withe the magneto/coil and carb before an engine start would happen.

Congratulations on the find, please send more pictures.

Paul

Paul Williams
1929 2 litre Coachbuilt Saloon
1951 Rover Cyclops
1958 Rover P4 90 Monte-Carlo Rally Car
1998 Discovery 300Tdi 3dr
1994 Rover 620 Sli

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Re: 1910 Rover

Postby Dirkco » Sun Nov 29, 2009 12:18 pm

Hi Paul,

I had concluded that it was a 8 HP, but it also has a VCC certificate stating this as well.

So you think the ar has been repainted at some point then and that dark green was the orginal color? Do you have a document stating this?

They don't mention lighting but was this an option as well? as it has a side gas lamp on each side and 1 larger lamp on the drivers side. Should it have had 2 larger lamps?

I guess it was run sometime in the 1970s and seems to be pretty free when moving the handle. I will look more into the engine and post pictures and more questions once I have moved the car to my shop.

Thanks for the reply
Dirk
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Re: 1910 Rover

Postby GOY189 » Mon Nov 30, 2009 11:05 pm

Hi Dirk,

The 1907 8 Hp at Gaydon is mulberry/ maroon colour rather like your photos, so it may be original finish on the 1910 car. It does look as though the wheels have been repainted though.

We had spoken about this at the NEC, I think before you had seen the car, - Congratulations what a find! I think the car has English registration plates from what little I can see in the photos, what is the number - we may have reference to it in the RSR records. I will certainly let Kent Robinson know. (He has records of many early 8's)

Best regards

Mike Maher
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Re: 1910 Rover

Postby Paul Gregory » Wed Dec 02, 2009 6:25 pm

Hi Dirk,
That is an incredible find, can see why you would be adding that to your collection. So is this going to come before the Streamline rebuild or is it queing up behind it?
Look forward to seeing more pictures once you have got it back to your place.
Regards
Paul
RSR Post 1950 Librarian

Do you have anything which could be added to the RSR Library for the benefit of all members? Please let me know if you have.
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Re: 1910 Rover

Postby 47p2 » Wed Dec 02, 2009 7:06 pm

A once in a lifetime find indeed.

Good to see it's gone to a good home
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Re: 1910 Rover

Postby GOY189 » Tue Dec 15, 2009 10:51 pm

From Kent Robinson’s correspondence with Dirk – reproduced with Kent’s permission.
Dear Dirk,
1910 Rover 8

I am not computerised but Mike Maher phoned me with your entries on the RSR website, from which a son has extracted for me, in paper form, your correspondence and photographs up to last evening.

Since I acquired a 1904 Rover 8, engine and chassis number 162, just over 9 years ago, I have recomissioned it – it having been dry stored for 28 years – and use it a lot. However my car is one of the very early ones and will not have many of the desirable features of 1910, so my comments may be inappropriate sometimes.

I do NOT keep a register of these cars; in fact apart frpm Mike Evans, I don’t think anyone does, but I do note some details for my own use.

For what its worth, I have only come across one reference to a Rover 8 (single) in the USA and that via Freewheel August 1987 – a letter from John Hanna of Denver, Colorado, copy enclosed (see http://s973.photobucket.com/albums/ae21 ... 0articles/). However, this “For sale” is misleading for Rover produced over 3000 Rover 8s, (not 200) and if the engine was the Silent Knight version (sleeve/slide valve) such were not introduced by Rover until October 1910 for Model year 1911, so it is just possible that there are two 1910/11 Rover 8s in the USA.

In an attempt to answer the points raised. If you can find a piece of bodywork that remains undisturbed such as under the seat, upholstery etc, you may be able to find evidence of other paint, but don’t anything to the paintwork until you are certain that it is not original – youu may well win your class at the Pebble Beach concours!? The wheels on my car are the original wooden spoked wheels – there is no reason why yours are not also the originals

Before starting my car after 28 years of inactivity, rear axle and gearbox were thoroughly cleaned and flushed and filled with decent lubricant. The engine compression should be massive, almost too much to turn over on the handle. It is not difficult to remove the cylinder block to check piston rings etc., and I would recommend such. Obviously, you will need to ensure that the petrol tank is clean..

I guess the trembler coil for starting and the magneto will need an overhaul, but you might be lucky. Do make sure that the magneto has not stuck rigid, i.e. is jammed solid, or you will break something therein when attempting to start the engine. You are so lucky to have the Bosch twin coil/ mag ignition system. If the Carburettor is the Rover Automatic, I am not sure what you do, but I have the Rover Carburettor, a pretty simple butterfly device that works well and seems to require no maintenance.

I t will simplify things enormously if you can give me details of Engine, Chassis and VCC dating certificate number and date and the UK Registration number. Such details would enable us to advise correctly, rather than guess.

The paintwork on the early cars seemed invariably a dark green but by 1910, other colours were used and I do not conclude that your car has been repainted. It may have been but do NOTHING to the paintwork until you are absolutely certain as to destroy something so historic would be a terrible sin.

Lighting was an option and is totally irrelevant to originality. One rear oil/ paraffin lamp on offside rear, two small paraffin side lamps and a pair of acetylene headlamps could have been included.

The chassis plate appears to be under the passengers door and may also reveal the engine number. The engine number will also be stamped on the engine crankcase beside the valve gear if it is a poppet valve engine.

I will send a copy of this to Mike Maher and Mike Evans and wish you every success and happiness with your wonderful new toy.

Yours ever,

Kent R
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Re: 1910 Rover

Postby Dirkco » Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:02 am

Hi Mike,

Thank you for posting Kent's letter. I recieved it last Friday along with several pictures of his 1904. I found it informative and enjoyed recieving the letter as much as getting Freewheel. I intend to return the favor and send along detailed pictures to Kent. If you don't think Kent would mind perhaps you could foward his Phone number and I will call him once I have the car for further advice.

I leave Friday night to pick up the car and hope to make it back Saturday night. If all goes well I will post detailed pictures Sunday.

Happy Holidays
Dirk
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Re: 1910 Rover

Postby Dirkco » Sun Feb 21, 2010 3:12 am

Hello All,

Well I spent the day on the 8 today.

1) Got a nice blue spark with almost no effort

2) Spent about 6 hours replacing the hoses and cleaning out the radiator and removed and cleaned the coolent chamber around the cylinder.

3) Fixed the choke and cable.

4) Changed the oil in the sump not sure how much oil to put in. I have a note that says fill it to the screen in the fill cap but that is missing so I put in 7 qts to start.

5) Attempted to start her compresion is massive so I engaged the cam that offsets the exhaust valve which made it a little easier. Primed her and got close to her starting. She did turn over on her own for a few revs.

So does anyone have advice on starting her? Is there a written procedure?

Thanks for any input

Dirk in the States
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Re: 1910 Rover

Postby Dirkco » Thu Feb 25, 2010 6:32 am

Hello All,

Well after a bit of work I have managed to get the Rover 8 running. We decided to take a video of the process and it is quite funny as I enlisted my boys and wife in the effort. Bear in mind the comentary is from 2 eleven year olds.

They are posted on Youtube so you can copy and past the links below into you browser

Best
Dirk in the States

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HbJA8fmRgsw (StartingTheRover8-Prep)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f5Otb8FmzDY (StartingTheRover8-Success)
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