V8 Torqueflite auto-box repairs and servicing

The following contact details and addresses are for companies who undertake supplying spares and who conduct strip and rebuilding of automatic gearboxes (ie Torqueflte) and Salisbury axles.

  • American Auto Spares Ltd., Kingsbury Road, Minworth, B76 9DD.
    Telephone:- 0121 351 7655. Contact: Phil
  • VMTP Midlands Ltd., Unit 10, Conduit Road, Norton Canes, Cannock, Staffordshire WS11 9TJ.
    Telephone:- 01543 270555. Contact: Nigel Bishop
  • Penn Autos Ltd., 3 Spring Lane, Wolverhampton, WV4 4SH.
    Telephone:- 01902 344004. Contact: Andy Frost.

American Auto Spares Ltd. no longer conduct strip and rebuilds but can provide most engine, gearbox, starter motors, alternators, etc. which is now the focus of their business.

The others are renovation companies who have conducted strip-down and rebuilding of Bristol V8 gearboxes and axles in the past and felt confident in ensuring a good outcome.

They always prefer to have the vehicle and are quite prepared to remove the gearbox which is taken out from the inside of the car and replaced. Both stated that the final adjustment to the auto-box is best achieved by a series of road trials.

The axle can also be stripped whilst still assembled to the vehicle saving the cost of removing it and the shipment cost of transporting such a large and heavy item.

Windscreens and seals for 408/9/10/11

Mobile Windscreens Bristol who trade under the name of National Windscreens at Bristol can supply windscreens.  The manager there is Mike Ackerman (Mike.Ackerman@mobilewindscreens.co.uk), tel 0117-3042000. They have in stock heated and normal 411 screens.  He states that these fit 408/9/10/11.  He will supply and pack a screen for you but requires you to sort out the carrier.

The rubber seals are stocked by Bristol Cars Services who say that seals cover 408/9/10/11. Graeme Payne (mob 07787-138079) is the contact there and confirms that all are covered.

The other company who may have everything is American Cars Care Services Ltd, owner Martin Barnes (mob 07769-906525) barnsey411@live.co.uk . He has some 408 screens in stock and states that 408/9/10 all have the same screen but the 411 is different.

406 Disk Brakes

Disc Brakes

One of the features of age is that I can remember many things from a long time ago – but not always accurately. My first memory of disc brakes was in the 50s as a young apprentice mechanic in the nearest Morris/MG Distributor to Fort Dunlop in Birmingham. Their development department used us as a fitting service for their test cars. In particular they had an MGA 1600 to which I fitted more sets of hydraulic cylinders than I care to remember as they attempted to make the pull back mechanism work (they never did). I well remember the constant exasperation of the Dunlop engineers, their cynicism and their bad opinion of their own product.

Even though in recent years I have fitted Dunlop brakes to four Jaguar XKs and my own 406 my prejudice has stayed with me to this day and I have never felt comfortable with their performance or durability. Imagine my joy to discover that there is now an answer. Zeus Engineering now makes front calliper sets and rear cylinders to modern standards and high quality.

Their product fits with little complication and additional pipework plus adjustment shims and instructions are included. One small point is to be careful to centre the calliper over the disc; my car had significant variance side to side.

I have now bedded in the pads and find the brakes to be powerful and progressive in the manner of a modern car. Beyond that I no longer have the comments of disgruntled Dunlop engineers ringing in my ears.

Roger Charlton

Supplier

Zeus Engineering
Unit J2, Dunkeswell Airfield
Honiton
Devon, EX14 4LE

Tel 01297300010
www.Zeus.uk.com

411 wiring diagram.

I have thought that there was no specific wiring diagram for the 411 in club circulation and have had to make do with the 410 version.

However, by accident I came across the 411 wiring diagram which is appended to the 411 owners manual that can be found here.  Alternately you can find the 411 owners manual via the menu system of the website under “literature”.  Of course you do need to be a BODA member to see this otherwise hidden content.

I hope other members find this useful.

Stuart

405

This is an excerpt from an article in today’s online Daily Telegraph interview with Sir Paul Smith, OBE:

Which car do you most regret selling?

I remember looking through a Bristol owners newsletter on Boxing Day a long time ago. I spotted this beautiful 1956 Bristol 405 on sale for two grand.

I sent a mate who knew about cars around to see it and when he arrived at the house, the owner was a gentleman in his eighties who was going to Greece to live with his son. He’d had the 405 for many years and he had the central heating on in his garage to keep it warm!

A Bristol 405 like the one driven by Sir Paul
A 405 – the only Bristol car to have four doors – like the one owned by Sir Paul

I ended up buying it and he cried as it left. I got a lot of use out of it around London for a while but it started to get some wear and tear and so I sent it away to have it fully restored.

I’ve been keeping it safe with the rest of my archive in Nottingham ever since. Occasionally one of my guys who works in my office there drives it around to make sure it’s still running. So I haven’t sold it as such, it’s just gone on an extended holiday and I miss it so.

Dave Dale

Wheel Bearings

bearings

Manufacturers do not want to make replacement from other sources that easy, regularly mixing two standard bearings into one assembly, although I doubt that Bristols went this far.

Take off one complete set of bearings (2 sets of bearings per hub; the inner bearing is usually larger than the outer; both will be tapered roller bearings) and find yourself a local  machine tool service company.   Take your bearings in and they will measure them while you wait (about 5 minutes).  There are 3 grades of bearings used classed  A, B and C.  The tolerances in manufacture are, of course, extremely tight so they employ an automatic grading system – A being the best and that’s what you want.  C are the poorest and probably go into washing machines and the like.   I think the classification system may have changed possibly 1 – 3.  If the numbers on the bearings are visible you should be able to quote these to any bearing company and avoid the need to go to a machine tool service company.

Valid at time of writing in October 2016:

There are a number of good bearing suppliers eg Seager Bearings, Kings Heath, Birmingham (0121 444 5391) who will supply at trade prices.

Bristol 603 Manual

Hi Mike

If you follow the literature tab on this site you’ll find the 603 drivers handbook. The nearest you’ll get to a workshop manual is the one for the 407 but little changed between the 407 and 603.

Best wishes

Michael Barton

 

Hi Everyone

Just wondering if a Bristol 603 manual exists?

If so, can I purchase one, or get one photo copied?

Any information would be appreciated.

Regards

Mike

10% ethanol

This article describes the effects of fuel containing 10% ethanol on classic MG’s in USA. There is a plan to introduce 10% ethanol into the UK ( and probably elsewhere ), so Bristol owners might be interested to read this article. The comforting news is that the UK government has assured the FBHVC that fuel companies will be required, when the industry moves to 10% ethanol in the UK, to continue to supply a ‘ protection grade ‘ for heritage vehicles of fuel containing no more than 5% ethanol. We all know that we can trust, without question, our politicians to keep their promises – so no problem then!

http://justbritish.com/ethanol-free-gasoline-john-twist/

Dave Dale.