Austin 7 Special

During the 1950's the cheapest way to get a car, was to pick up a wreck from your local scrap yard.(usually for less than 5.) Throw away its rusty bodywork, and build your own body out of bits of wood and any cheap sheet metal you could find. Often old advertising signs or even old oil drums. No M.O.T. to worry about in those days.
    Hundreds, if not thousands of Austin Sevens and Ford Pop's must have had this treatment. Which saved them from oblivion.
    Mine started life as an Austin Ruby in 1937. I have no idea when it was converted to a two seater, or by whom. But it looked like this when I bought it in 1973.
    My Dad thought I was daft to spend my money on an old car, he just couldn't understand why I didn't want save up for a newer one.

My Austin Special, soon after I bought it, photographed about 1974.

    This pic was taken during a recent refurbishment.

It had aquired a new radiator cowl around 1976, but apart from that. Despite being in regular daily use, and covering many thousands of miles, very little has changed in the last 30 years.... I wish I could say the same for its owner !
In this picture you can see the crude wooden frame being repared before the sheet aluminium skin is replaced. The car is powered by a 750cc sidevalve engine, the design of which, Austins' eventually sold to Reliants.    

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