Why not view our other blog at CKD Boats cc

Looking for info on boats? all sorts of stuff has been posted now on the first blog. Why not try Roys other blog, he has over 3300 entries in there. That blog is full of information and pictures,its really about one mans life. Designed for those who enjoy boats, cars, traveling , plus in some cases, finding out how to fix things yourself. We also started a third blog which is mainly about the two shops, my daughters started. plus odd ends about me and some I have known.


How hard can this be?

Try this link. http://ckdboats.blogspot.com/

Saturday, 28 September 2013

York Point two Imps seen in Hout Bay today

We did a bit of a photo shoot for the Imp Clubs magazine today,this was one of the pictures.
Click on any picture to view full size.

The white Hillman Imp belongs to club member Eric, the Singer Chamois is my own. Both are 1967 cars .

Pictures by Roy Mc Bride using a Canon G11 camera.

This is also named West Fort and dates back many hundreds of years.

Druma sits and waits for the next part of his morning out. This was a South African winter morning, rain and wind but thats just about passed now.


Saturday, 31 August 2013

Bob Kelsey tries the Zulu Warrior Hillman Imp for size

When Terence Tracey held a garden party for Bob Kelsey a lot of Impers turned up to greet Bob, he was the man who took the circuits of South Africa in his 998cc Hillman Imp back in 1966.

Thanks for this Terence.


Bob Kelsey Hillman Imp is in the lead

This picture was posted on the Terence Tracey Facebook page, its one I have never seen.

Dated around 1966 when Bob was cleaning up in the South African Saloon Car Championships.

Terence is the man behind the successful JoLon Imp drive to Coventry, UK.


Saturday, 17 August 2013

Singer Chamois, a winter weather break in the Cape

With massive storms,a ship on the beach on the east coast, Claremont,  a Hout Bay fishing boat wrecked on Robben Island this is sure not the right time to be out at sea.

Note, unkown to myself, the salvors were busy taking the ship off the beach the same day I did this blog.

Click on any picture for a larger view and see more detail.

Then the rain stopped, I took the 1967 Singer Chamois out for a drive to warm it up and charge the battery, things sure look good when the sun comes out!

The car does really need a wipe down with a leather but the paint still looks ok.
Why does this car drive so well? It may be the part specification sport motor and with the twin Strombergs and Hartwell small bore exhaust?

Then again it may be the new clutch, pressure plate and release bearing, or the new set of Monte Carlo road springs, the 13" x 5J wider  wheels and 165-65-13R Firestone tyres, or the new set of  front disc brakes, I guess all together this is just a great car!

The original Singer engine cover is in the paint shop for a refurbish, when its finished this standard Hillman Imp one will go back into storage.

We have owned this Singer Chamois for twenty years, it was my wifes daily driver for thirteen years and it could do the same again now.

The engine bay was repainted when I removed the engine to fit the new clutch. 

Is this car for sale, I am not sure why not make me an offer?


Note, the sunshine did not last long, I had to quickly park the Singer Chamois in its garage, then drive down to the local  harbour in the Ford Bantam 1600i Sport (mazda engine) rather that gets wet than our Singer!

The Mazda engine is a cross flow, with fuel injection it puts out around 108bhp and makes for a good bridge between a road car and a daily work horse. Ford chose to use the Mazda engine over their own 1600 version.

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Orginal Hillman Imp steering rack gaiter set

This was a purchase I was fortunate to make from a fellow Imp Club member, which does rather underline the value of being a club member.

These are not the copies being made now but the genuine thing and as made by Engproducs and fitted to the Imp. (was a letter T ever supposed to be in that name, will we ever know?)

I do have a spare steering rack, so the rubbers can be fitted and its an easier and faster change over then.
you need to fit the drag links and with one end boot fitted, pour in a half pint of hypoid gear oil from the open end.

Re fit that end boot and you can then refit the assembly to the steering rack mounts.

For club membership and other related items,  please view the Imp Clubs new web site  at the address www.theimpclub.com


Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Hillman Imp steering rack rubber gaiter

Mine may be all of 47 years old, or if I changed it when the car was taken apart 20 years ago, then rebuilt,its still 20 years old!

This is what a set looks like, there are two 13mm holes on the other side of the long tube with the fluted sections, the track rod bolts go through those holes.

They are marked as being made by Engproducs, both the main unit and the two end covers.

Its been a matter of discussion for years as to why the letter T in Products was left out?


Monday, 1 July 2013

Re fix of a Hillman Imp steering rack gaiter, works!

Weeks later and after a decent drive to Suikerbossie hill (sugarbush) and back, plus a Shell filling station for petrol, I do another visual and the fix holds and with no leaks of hypoid oil that I can see.

Works for me!

Two weeks later and I have just done a visual check to see if this idea has done the job?

There was an oil drip on the repair end, re tightening the screw clamp should have fixed that, it also prooves that the single rubber cap end on the other side of the steering rack was enough oil to work to the far end of the rack. I have since put another end cap of Shell Sprirax SAE 80W-90 heavy duty gear oil into the rack. With the low milage I tend to do in this car we should be ok for the time being?

The original story starts below:

These are very long lasting, the one on our 1967 Singer Chamois may be the original, if not its at least twenty years old and from the rebuild I did back then.

I had seen that the gaiter had come free of the bellows section on the right hand side, oil had gone and the free end would allow sand and dirt to enter if not fixed.

Seen here I have done a stop gap repair.

A new rubber gaiter is GBP30 by the time I get it here I expect that to be GBP50 with postage, duty and vat, more maybe?

In this case it was the very end that had come free.

The steering rack gaiter on the Singer had split right around where the right hand clip is.
A new one will be 50 quid by the time it gets here, plus its a big job to remove and refit the
entire rack.
This was last refitted twenty years back? I dont remember fitting a new one, if its the original
its now 47 years old and has done 99,300 miles or so.
The trick was to remove the old clip and what was now a rubber band underneath it, then with
a new clip and sliding the gaiter alone 3/8" re fasten it, as you can see its ok, will it work and
for how long?
Not all oil had gone from the gear end, so no damage was done, I took the rubber end cap off and
filled it with Hypoid oil, popped it back on and tightened the clip quickly, seems good.
With luck this will save someone out there some time and money?
Note the disc brake, working better and better now as the pads bed in.

Roys Imp front disc brakes work

In use about a month now, to start the brake peddle had a soft feel, the brakes were working though so I thought to leave it a while and see what happened?  The standard 0.65" master cylinder is still being used, I am told the 0.70" one from the Sport Imps will firm up the braking?

Click on the picture for a larger image.

I put some miles on them and bit by bit the peddle pressure firmed up, in fact the pressure is just about right now. Some heavy stops on a clear road from about 50mph seems to have bedded the brakes pads in.

This extra is a worthwhile addition to any Hillman Imp, ours is a 1967 Singer Chamois with around 99,350 miles on the odometer.


Sunday, 23 June 2013

For sale a new Hillman Imp, circa 1973

In this case the new means rebuilt and to a high standard.

The title papers are with me now, first registered and on January 1st 1973, so the car was built in 1972.

The car is sound and is waiting for a new owner, the original block exists and is now a 998cc size, its never run as this size engine either.

Click on the picture for a larger image.

This was that car sent to Scotland and not the car on offer, the picture shows the standard of finish possible.

The car is for sale and as a project to keep me busy, more or less as a cost plus deal, it can be supplied as standard engine type, sport or to your order.

This is the 1972/3 car on offer, its a car that has been dry stored for decades.

The car is In Cape Town, South Africa and can be finished to order and shipped world wide. One was finished as a race car and shipped back to Scotland last year.

Pricing is on specification, engine, disc brakes etc, plus the finish required.



Imp front disc brakes

Some fifty years after the Hillman Imp came out the Linwood,Scotland, factory I have upgraded our 1967 Singer Chamois to a set of front disc brakes.

They are working, the pads are bedding in, using the 0.65" master cylinder does not give the peddle feel I am told the larger one off the sport does but pressed firmly we stop just fine.

Note the joint at the end of the steering arm, thats off the Ford Fiesta, as is the brake caliper. The discs are Ford Ka and 240mm in diameter, suitable for the 13" rims on this car. You will need the smaller Ford Fiesta disc if using 12" diameter rims.


Thursday, 20 June 2013

Hillman Imp front disc brake kits

We have IMPorted a few of these kit sets, they are easy to fit and are well engineered.

You will need to source your own Ford Fiesta front disc calipers and when using 13" wheel rims the Ford KA 240mm diameter discs.


Saturday, 15 June 2013

Smiths RVI-5000 rev counter wire diagram

Does anyone have the wiring diagram for the 2" RVI-5000 type Smiths revolutions counter?

I have one and it fitted but not connected, it has wires and two terminals at the rear of the unit and behind a round plastic cover.

One wire is brown and is next to a terminal marked 8cyl, the other is blue and next to a terminal marked 4 & 6 cyl, I have read the blue connects to the 4 & 6 cyl, is this correct?

From the base of the unit are two white wires, said to be connected between the coils white/black wire to the distributor? there is also a red wire, does that go to a switched power source at the ignition key?

There is a red wire with a white trace, thats to the light bulb, so goes to the cars lighting circuit.

Does anyone know how to connect this unit, I would hate to fry it up!

WANTED FOR FREE, I will then post it on these Imp blog pages :)


Monday, 10 June 2013

Smiths RVI 5000 rev counter on an Imp

Well its now installed but not yet connected, the unit came with no wire diagram, does anyone have one they can supply me?

This two inch dial Smiths RVI rev counter is just perfect for a car the size of the 1967 Singer Chamois we have (Hillman Imp)
Contact me for the way to install it without drilling holes in your car!


Saturday, 8 June 2013

Fitting Ford KA disc brakes to a Singer Chamois

In the case the car is the 1967 Singer Chamois we have owned about twenty years, it could of course be the Hillman Imp or one of the many varients, such as Sunbeam or Husky.

This is what was coming off.

This is what was going on, the discs are the Ford KA 240mm diameter size, the calipers are off Fords Fiesta.  The kit with link plates, bolts and special braided stainless steel fluid hose came from Colin Valentine in the UK. (recomended)

Note, the 240mm diameter disc will only fit inside a 13" wheel rim, for the Imps standard 12" rim use the Ford Fiesta 220mm brake disc.

The calipers were stripped and cleaned, they needed new dust seals, the ones sold for Nissan Sabre / Sentra/ Pulsar/ Langey,worked fine in this case. The actual seals in the kits were the wrong size but the Ford ones were re usable. New Ferodo type Premier FDB589 brake pads were fitted.

The finished job and with the wheel arch repainted.

The work is not too complicated and given you have some spanners, a hammer and a power drill with a 10mm drill, you should do both sides of the car in a single day.
Colin Valentine also supplies a picture assembly page, instructions too!

This is the third set he has supplied locally and in the past eighteen months.

Open the link for more on the kits. http://royckdboats.blogspot.com/2012/12/hillman-imp-front-disc-brake-kits.html


Hillman Imp or Singer Chamois drive shaft couplers

Can we use another car makers coupler?

Well we can, if you are an Imp Club Forum member there is lots posted by myself here. http://forum.theimpclub.co.uk/viewtopic.php?f=23&t=24534&p=237326#p237326

The Ford Transit and Ford Granada used them, so did the Lotus Elan, also the Triumph Herald type cars/

The JoLon Imp Rotoflex by Ford

Postby African Imp » Sat Jun 08, 2013 8:52 am
These were not fitted to the JoLon Imp but had we had the time to courier them out, this is what I would have supplied to Terence and Geoff.

We can not just buy genuine Rotoflex here in South Africa, I have some used spares in fair condition and one S.U.K type which are junk, then I discovered we can
order the ones used by Ford.

I was told by the motor factors who bought in about ten of these for me, that they are off the Ford Grenada 3ltr drive shaft, if anyone can say or proove otherwise I would be pleased to hear from them.

The main issue is they are the right inner and outer size, they do need the square holes triming down, that can be done with a thin disc easy enough (use safety glasses) the holes are a bit over sized, I had a set of thin wall sleeves made up, look inside the holes on the right hand side one. They may be re usable, time will tell, either way they fit and work just fine :)

Searching on Google I found this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Z76VwSomok

Seems the Ford Transait van and the Ford Granada uses the rubber couplers !

The one on the left is as they are when purchased, the one with the shaft spider is after trimming the bolt holes to length and adding a thin walled steel spacer tube.

From my entry today and on the story of the now famous JoLon Imp adventure!

While this posting is off the LoLon Imps story line, I would like to think that the topic is relevent to the subject of drive couplers and may help others who require new drive shaft couplers?

In this case its a 1967 Singer Chamois, the coupler has been on some months now, with the drive spider having a new seal surface fitted due to transmision oil loss. The repair went fine and the picture prooves this after part from another car manufacturer will work on our Imps.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/bhp/drive-shaft-coupling £30.32

Friday, 31 May 2013

JoLon Imp is in the UK

It will remain there for some months, the plan is to ship it back to South Africa later this year?


14,000 kilometres in 39 days, plus about 2000 more on three ferry boats. Africa, Asia, Europe and Great Britain, then a side trip to Ireland!

They arrived in Coventry on the last day of the Imp Clubs four day event, it was 6am, a group of cars went out to meet them and bring them in.
At the camp site, Terence and Geoff really did make it and with just six hours to spare!
Well done guys.

Thursday, 30 May 2013

Our Hillman Imp, a new book by Paul Coulter

Book Description

1 May 2013
Paul Coulter takes a nostalgic look at the Hillman Imp motor car built in Linwood, Scotland from 1963 until 1976. The Hillman Imp was a rival to the Mini and had many innovations that were soon adopted by other motor manufacturers. The Imp however met an untimely demise. This book takes a brief look at the history of the Imp and focuses on its success as well as recording fond memories of Imp owners past and present. If you owned a Hillman Imp, knew someone who did or are just fascinated by the story of this little car then Our Hillman Imp is a light-hearted must-read. Over 150 colour pictures.

On special offer at Amazon Books.

Our Hillman Imp [Illustrated] [Paperback]

Paul Coulter

Price:£8.46 & this item Delivered FREE in the UK with Super Saver Delivery. See details and conditions
You Save:£1.53 (15%)

o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1908931310 check this link for the full report and see whats being said about Pauls new book.

Only 10 left in stock (more on the way).
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

Product Description

About the Author

Paul Coulter is a chartered surveyor but became a part time freelance motoring journalist and playwright in 2009. Paul's work is published weekly in newspapers and monthly in motoring magazines. An avid fan since purchasing his first Hillman Imp at the age of 17 in 1995 he has been an active member of The Imp Club ever since writing for the club's award winning Impressions magazine about the trials and tribulations of owning an Imp today. Paul has owned many Imps over the years and continues to use a Hillman Imp as a daily driver, heralding the club's mantra 'keeping the Imp alive!'

The JoLon Imps route.

It became clear that some route changes would happen on a day to day basis, so what was posted to start was always a planner map.

The route taken missed out Zimbabwe right away, they chose Botswana instead. The ferry trip to Italy was not running, so they went into Asia and Turkey instead.

My thanks to Justin Phillips for supply of the route map that they ended up taking. Thats some 14,000 Kms and not including distance done on the three ferry boats they took, add about 2000 Kms to cover that. Driving time was a stunning 39 days!

Arrival at Coventry at 6.20am on May 6th 2013, the club members went out to guide them in!

After breakfast there were speaches and awards.

Roll on Imp 60, will you be there I wonder?

www.theimpclub.co.uk for membership and other Imp news.


1967 Singer Chamois / Hillman Imp rear brakes exposed

The car is not quite to sport specification as the camshaft is a standard lift only but with twin Strombergs and a Hartwell exhaust manifold the car is fast enough. There is a Sport Imp engine ready to fit someday, that's got plus 60 thou, Heppolite Powermax pistons and an R17 camshaft fitted. We needed better brakes before that motor sees it being installed!

With the front of the car now having Ford Fiesta large diameter disc brakes, I thought to inspect and clean the rear drum brakes out.

They were rebuilt some while back, when new shoes, brake fluid cylinder and flexible hose parts were fitted. After a good blow out with an air line, refit the drum and adjust the liners we were ready to test drive the car.

After a drive around our local estate I found the brake pressure was starting to work, they are progressive with no snatching and when the peddle is pressed a little harder the car stops and smartly.

I still have the standard 0.625" master cylinder, I am told the Sports 0.700" size works better?


Monday, 27 May 2013

1967 Singer Chamois gets front disc brakes

Yes, side one was fitted yesterday and while I was trying to watch that very stop go Monaco F1GP, all they seem to do these days is drive as slow as they can to save tyres?

Anyway, the job should take a few hours and for both sides, I did a set on the race Imp sent to Scotland last year, really easy too.

Not this time, that lower Stub Axle bolt just was not coming out and I had to drill it away!

Note the Monte Carlo lower and sport road spring.

Before the original brake drum and stub axle was removed.

This is what slowed the process down, adding about two hours in the process?
The new bolts are all plated and coated with Fluid Film rust preventative! The second side needed the same drilling out, they were last removed some twenty years back!
Note the series of drill bits required, plus the amount of swarf deposited on the floor below the stub axle, this was only the result of drilling out the one side!
My 1967 Singer Chamois is now some 47 years old, it will pass the 100,000 miles mark quite soon, imagine, an odometer with zero miles on it!

So here we are, the Imp turned fifty years old on May 3rd 2013, the arrival of the by now famous JoLon Imp from Johannesburg to Coventry proves once and for all just how good our cars are.

They did some 14,000 Kms in 39 days only but that's the driving bit, with about 2000Kms more on three ferrys, 18 countries and three continents whats next!


Friday, 5 April 2013

The Hillman Imp as a see through picture

Seen here is an artists impression of whats under the skin of the Hillman Imp car, the early ones and pre Chrysler days and their take over, were known to be better built and stronger. Chrysler was not a good time for the Imp, they tried to make it for less and started taking body parts and trim out of the car.

The JoLon Imp, hopefully now passing through Kenya, is a Rootes built car, Terence Tracey had the option of a later but Chrysler built car and chose the earlier genuine Rootes car for its extra body strength. The stongest Imps ever produced were made in Portugal as a CKD ( complete knock down ) kit and as well as the normal spot welds, they then seam brazed the rest of the body!


Hillman Imps in Linwood, Scotland.

This is a great picture of Hillman Imps being transported and in the Imp factory at Linwood.

All nice and brand new, was this almost fifty years ago?


Erics Hillman Imp in Hout Bay and at the local primary school

I found this picture on a French web site just yesterday, Eric knew nothing about it.

Words from Eric, the cars owner.

That’s amazing – I took the Imp to pick Maxine up from school a couple of weeks ago and a guy took a photo of the car!!


Saturday, 2 March 2013

Imp Mk1 Solex carb pipes

Seen here, the copper pipes warmed a bi metal spring in the Solex choke, when warmed correctly the choke would then be open.

To engage the choke you pressed the foot control once, then started the car, it would change the choke settings automatically from then on!


Hillman Imp Mk1 foot actuator

Basically as it was back in May 1963 when the Imp was first relased.

The unit worked well on the used Imp I started driving with.

Taken out of service as later assemblies gave some bother?

This gives a very smooth and progressive action.