Dutton Kit Cars and their owners

Wednesday 11th near midnight, my Grandad past away after going into hospital for stomach pains a few days prior. My family has set about getting the funeral arranged and looking at clearing the house to put it on the market. It's a big place with a lot of "treasures" (as my Grandad called them) from charity shops, but also quite a lot of important family related docs/pics/items so will actually take quite a while to fully sort through. This gives me a little time to make arrangements for the Dutton/continue the restoration.

I'm in mixed feelings with it at the moment, whilst I do want to continue the restoration my motivation has taken a huge hit and this is being held back further by my uncertainty with where it's going to be kept when its done and even if I'm going to enjoy driving/owning it (I typically gravitate to massive yank tanks at car shows). I have thoroughly enjoyed the restoration process as well as the social side; meeting and talking with you guys as well as the support you have shown me. The meet ups and other various events seem interesting which keeps me pushing forwards, but at the end of the day I'm just not sure I can make it work with my current situation.

With this in mind, I'm going to continue working on it for as long as I can and try and get at least an MOT on it. However, once again I'm going to put some feelers out to see if anybody (or anybody you may know) would be interested in taking it on as a project. A quick run down on general state;

- Engine serviced and sorted, now running fine
- Brakes refurbished
- Master cylinders refurbished
- Roll over bar removed, new one purchased, currently working on it and the rear suspension
- Fuel tank removed, new one sourced, nearly sorted

- New tyres and balancing all round

- New battery

- Chassis seems in good condition

- All dials seem to work (except fuel gauge obvs)

- Electrics seem to work with some issues although it just seems that the connections need a clean up and earths need sorting/cleaning.

If anyone is interested at all I can give a full list of everything I've bought and done as well advise on what I know needs doing. Here is a link to my flikr which has a few pictures of it as I've been going along. I have a ton more if required. I paid £500 for it as a non-runner and with all the work I have done to it, £700 seems a fair price to me.

Some progress has been made this week though so its not all doom and gloom.

I have opened up the hole in the boot to fit the new fuel tank in, taken measurements to get some reinforcing plates made for the boot floor, hopefully they'll be done by the end of next week and the fuel tank will be fitted.

The rest of the fuel line has been blown out with an airline and all the rubber parts have been replaced, going to get a fuel filter to fit as well.

I'm still undecided on what to do with the rear suspension too. Replacing it as-was doesn't feel right to me as it seemed a bit of a bodge. However after looking at the axle, the shock mounts are welded on. Not sure if it would be worth carefully removing them and trying to weld them/new ones on facing the other side of the axle and rerouting the brake lines so i could put a shock straight up as it should be. The problem with either plan though is that the leaf springs don't look to be in particularly good condition, this brings me back to whether I should go all in and 5-link it.

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Comment by James Doulton on July 18, 2018 at 8:35

I am sorry to hear of your loss. Knowing that it is coming doesn't seem to reduce the impact when it happens. It takes a while to regain your balance and to understand what will make you happy in the long term, and going through his things in his house is probably going to keep you sad and sensitive to the loss.

On the positive side, it is great that you feel that loss and sadness because it would be more sad if you didn't - it shows that he mattered to you. But he lives on, in a way, in the lives of those that he affected and you will still be able to imagine how he would have reacted to events and the advice he would have given you. 

Whilst I am sure that he would have liked you to relive his time with the Dutton, I also expect that he wouldn't have wanted it to be a burden on you, so if it doesn't fit with your life then I would expect him to have been sympathetic to your position (and to your taste in cars) and to be happy that you carried on the passion, rather than restoring his actual car.

Comment by Adrian Southgate on July 17, 2018 at 14:14

Sorry to hear about your Grandad Toby. 

I'm of the same mind as Daryl and Dave, persevere with it. 

There is a 'certain grin' that will happen every time you drive it, we all get it, I'm pretty sure your Grandad would have had it too. 

Comment by Dave Taylor on July 16, 2018 at 22:39
Sorry for your loss Toby, sad times. Daryl is right to finish it in memory of your Grandad and enjoy in the knowledge he is always in your thoughts.

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