Home Restoration Topics Featured Cars and Trucks About
Left arrow


Right arrow

1959 Austin-Healey 100-6

Part 2

Story and photos by Jerry F. Boone

Litsjo says he’s always had a fondness for British cars, and the 100-6 was the perfect project for a car-deprived enthusiast. It was to the point it needed only a few more hours to have it on the road.

Well, that’s what he thought.

“When I got it, it didn’t run, he says. “It had a new wiring harness but it didn’t match the factory diagram so the shop was having a hard time figuring it out.

“I began tracing wires and finally sorted out the problems.”

He got it to the point he could concentrate on the ignition system, but first, he unhooked the wire going to the electric fuel pump “so it wasn’t trying to pump fuel from an empty tank.”

Litsjo went back to work under the hood, but looked up just in time to see smoke wafting from the rear of the car. The fuel pump wire had fallen against the frame, shorted out, and fried most of the newly-installed harness.

He says there is a lesson there, about putting tape on the ends of loose, hot wires.

Litsjo says the car came with boxes of spares, including a second, new wiring harness.

He was a lot more careful the second time around.

New harness installed, it was time to put fuel in the tank and fire up the engine.

“But all the fuel I put in the tank ran out the rust holes,” he says.

New harness. New tank. Renewed enthusiasm.

Again, he began working on the ignition system, but Litsjo -who knows his way around cars -still couldn’t get the big six-cylinder to fire up.

He did the usual tests, and determined the timing chain had been installed with the cam about 40 degrees off.

Fixing the problem means pulling out most of the parts in front of the engine, to lift the motor and get at the cam gear.

Problem solved. Once again he hit the ignition switch and the engine fired to life, filling the bell housing with oil, to the point it began creating a lake on the floor of his small shop.

He began to get really worried about what other problems he’s find in the engine.

The head was a mess and there were hammer marks on the bearing caps.

“The whole thing had to be torn down and rebuilt right,” he says.

Three of the bores were so badly rusted they had to be sleeved. The rods and pistons had to be replaced.

Litsjo says the shop, upon seeing the condition of the engine, agreed to pay the entire cost to make it good.

“When I bought the car, I figured it might take me four months to get everything sorted out, and my wife and I would have a really very nice roadster to tour Europe in,” he says. “Instead it took me two years, working in a shop just barely big enough for the car, to get it on the road.

He and his wife were able to enjoy the car for a few months before his company returned him -and the car -- to Seattle.

“We put a lot of miles on it in a very short time,” he says.

The highlight of the road trips was a tour with the Austin-Healey Club of Belgium, which was allowed to park their cars on display in Brussels’s iconic Gran Plas.

“That just doesn’t happen,” he says. “And it probably won’t happen again.”

In spite of all the problems, Litsjo says he never considered giving up and moving on to something else.

“As a result of the work, I think I appreciate the car more just because of all the effort that went into it,” he says, “and I know just about every part in it now.”

Prev Part1 Part2 Next
Click on any item below for more details at Amazon.com

R.M. Clarke
Austin-Healey 100 and 100/6 1952-1959 Gold Portfolio
Brooklands Books, Paperback, 1991-03-23
This book is a collection of road tests, model introductions, specification and technical data, and driving impressions. It also covers the record breaking and buying an Austin-Healey today. Models covered are 100, 100/4, 100/6, 100/S, 100/M, Mille Miglia.

Bill Piggott
Austin-Healey: A celebration of the fabulous ‘Big’ Healey
Haynes Publishing, Hardcover, 2002-11-01
This commemorative edition features period and modern color photos, and a complete history chronicling racing and rallying exploits and road cars. This story begins with the first model unveiled in 1952 and continues through the last car, a 3000 Mk111, rolled off the production line in 1967. All variants the four-and six-cylinder Healey 100s and the later 3000 model are covered.

Geoffrey Healey
The Healey Story: A dynamic father and son partnership and their world-beating cars
Haynes Publishing, Hardcover, 1997-01-25
This book gives the complete story of Healey cars, corrects myths, and answers questions raised by enthusiasts. It is about a Cornish father and son partnership and their 30-year involvement in the motor industry. The cars they made are still highly sought-after in Europe, the US and Australia, where many of the specials Geoffrey Healey prepared, can now be found.

Brooklands Books Ltd
Austin-Healey Workshop Manual: Austin-Healey 100/6 & 3000: Part No AKD1179H
Brooklands Books, Paperback, 1965-06-01
This manual covers the 100/6, the 3000 (Marks I and II), and the Mark II and III sports convertible (series BJ7 and BJ8). In includes detailed upkeep and repair, required tools, and general information.

Graham Robson
Austin-Healey 100 & 3000 Series
Crowood, Paperback, 2001-10-21
Unveiled in 1952, the Austin-Healey 100 was an innovation in the sports car market and won instant acclaim. As the series developed, the cars only became more popular and garnered an even larger following. This illustrated retrospective describes the cars’ evolution, providing performance specifications for each model and sidebars detailing the places, people and events that shaped the story of the “Big Healeys.”

Jon Pressnell
Classic British Sports Cars
Haynes Publishing, Hardcover, 2007-02-15
Fifty-six open-top icon roadsters feature in this authoritiative, highly pictorial celebration of classic British sports cars, from the AC Ace to the Wolseley Hornet Special. Individual histories will place each car in perspective, describing its appeal, significance and driving characteristics. Also detailed for each one will be models and variants, year-by-year evolution, specification, performance figures - and lots of fun facts.

Jay Lamm
How to Restore British Sports Cars
Motorbooks International, Paperback, 1992-01
This book gives you detailed tips and techniques for restoring your favorite British sports car, including MG, Triumph, Sunbeam, Austin-Healey, Jaguar, Mini, Morgan, Lotus, Jensen-Healey, TVR, and more. It includes 400 photos and illustrations to help you with your restoration, from start to finish.

1956-1959 Austin Healey 100/6 11” X 17” Color Wiring Diagram

This diagram is 11” x 17”, bigger than other wiring diagrams. The wires are in original factory colors, and it is laminated to prevent grease smudges. 100% Satisfaction Guaranteed.

Featured Cars
Sponsored Links

Copyright 2008 - 2021 - PopularRestorations.com - All Rights Reserved

Contact information