ROVER 12HP - £9,500 ovno
1937 ROVER SIX LIGHT SPORTS SALOON
The Rover 12 came into my possession in May 1984 when I bought it from a garage in Rhymney Monmouthshire, the owners name was a Mr Austin Chamberlain and he was the registered 2nd owner when he acquired it back in April 1960, and in that time between then and 1984 did not even so much as turn a wheel.
The first owner Mr Charles Stuart Gibson lived in Hove Brighton with his wife, I have not been able to find out anything more about him except that he was called up to action in the War and unfortunately never return. His wife used the car for local journeys until she final passed away in the sixties. It was then that the estate was sold up as directed by the will and Mr Chamberlain heard about it and successfully purchased the car, it was only sporting 11,300 mls on the clock and as stated earlier that was still the mileage when I took it over in 1984.
The car was still standing on its original Avon Duo Tread tyres which were in a very sorry state, they had started to become brittle like plastic. At that time I was only interested in getting the old girl running again, so I was able to get tyres of different makes from the Auto-jumbles which at least got me up and running. With regards the engine at first I lubricated each cylinder and slowly turned the engine over on the handle to prevent any damage in the cylinders. To investigate the engine even further I removed the head and inspected the walls of the cylinders, to which I was pleasantly surprised to find no wear at all and proceeded to replace everything complete with new gaskets.
After very minimal work, i.e. new plugs, points and oil etc, I drained all the old fuel from the petrol tank, did not find too much residue and I replenished it with fresh four star with additives. After a couple of cranks on the handle it fired up and has now to date clocked up a further 11,000 miles in 32 years. The starter motor is causing a few problems, I have removed it from the car in the past to examine it, and I have found as to be expected no wear what so ever due to the low milage, the car has in reality not reached its first service, it is still running in. Anyhow, after taking it apart and examining it, all I needed to do was to clean up the commutator and the shaft that the bendix runs on with a non greasy cleaner and fitted it back into the car, it worked for a short while and then died. I think the problem must l be with the solenoid which I have not checked.
The interior did not need any attention except for a treatment of moth killer, some fabrics are showing very small signs of the presence of moth, but are all ok now. Leather in very good condition, it has aged but no rips or tears, the interior trim is like new, all original. The tool tray is absolutely complete and looked as if it had never had any action, the tools had been there so long they were all stuck in their places in the tool tray. Under the drivers seat are all the jacking tools along with a puncture repair kit of the thirties. In the boot is the original stirrup pump, which still works but needs a new rubber hose.
The original paintwork is starting to show it's age and has been polished so much over the years that it is showing the primer on the edges and curves, but it still buffs up to a good shine, and the bodywork is completely free of rust. I have had some of the chrome work redone, but it will need more doing at some point in the future.
I have replaced all of the flooring with a quality marine pine as it was starting to become a bit springy (de-laminating) The original panels were used as templates to create the new ones, complete with the trap doors to access the jacking points, so it is all as it was originally, with all fittings transferred to the new panels.
The Bijur Lubrication System is still functional and sends oil to all points it has not had the grease point treatment as was the popular conversion made by some short sighted people in their day. Each moving part on the car has a small valve fitted to it which in turn is connected to some fine copper pipe work that travels around the car from the control pump in the engine bay. This is operated by vacuum produced in the inlet manifold which pumps a supply of fine oil to some of the moving parts such as clutch, brake and accelerator shaft on which they all pivot. Even though a lot of spares are still available for these system, some owners replace them with grease nipples which does not have the same results in lubrication. When fully functional as they are on this car, when you stop in somebodies drive, you will find, or should I say they will find little spots of oil everywhere where your car was sitting, you tend not to get invited again, only joking, it is a marvellous system well in advance of its age
She has to be one of the most original Rovers in the country due to her having so few owners, so I have decided that a fair price would be £12,500.00, I have been told that I am letting her go for well under her true value, but my interest is more in how she will be treated with new owners, the only reason that after all these years I have decided that it would be nice to see her developed with fresh owners with keen enthusiasm
If you have owned a pre war car before you will be aware that it is exempt with regards an MOT and tax, but you may find that some of the insurance companies have realised that even though the majority of pre 1960,s owners are enthusiasts and would maintain their car in more detail and care than a new car, there are still going to be a percentage that are running old bangers for want of a better phrase and are not going to be a good risk factor, so they are starting to ask for engineers reports before they will insure the vehicle.
I have included a couple of extra photos, the first two are of the underside of the wings showing how the original paint is still gleaming. The next one is the running board, when I go to rallies other owners do not believe that I have not replaced them for new, I can asure you they are original. The last one shows you the milage 21318 mls, you can see of this picture one of the fixing screws, why I have mentioned this is because a friend of mine who is an ex cabinet maker gave me advice on revarnishing the wood work, which he did with some wonderful tips on how to get the best from the application, but he then went on to say that if this car was as original as you say it is, the cabinet/joiner who fitted the trim would have made sure that the slots of the screws were in line with the grain. There are a lot of screws like this in the car, when you come to see it you will see that every slot is in fact in line with the grain and if it is a panal then the slot would favour the length of the panel
- 22300 Miles
- RefCode: DIY1159440