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Old 07-28-2007, 10:34 AM   #1
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Harry Potter FE. Where could we be if people cared?

I've been busy getting our '59 Ford Anglia back on the road, in part because it's the Harry Potter car. Was quite a hit at the bookstore I took it to last Fri. Stole most of the attention this sales guy was trying to drum up for 2 new SUVs he was exhibiting a few feet away.

Harry Potter is why we fixed it up, but not why we have the car. Have owned it since 1964. FE is the bigger reason. Check out these stats, from the manual:

Code:
Wheelbase ...... 90.5 in.             Height ................ 56 in.
Front Track ...... 46 in.             Ground Clearance ... 6.25 in.
Rear Track ....... 46 in.             Width ................... 57 in.
Length ........... 154 in.            Weight (standard) ... 1625 lbs.
Weight distribution ... 56F/44R%      Weight (De Luxe) .... 1645 lbs.

Maximum speed:  78 mph        In 2nd gear:  39 mph
In 3rd gear:    68 mph        In 1st gear:    23 mph
Normal cruising speed:  65 mph

ACCELERATION from 0 to (37 bhp, 998 cc engine)
30 mph:   7 seconds
40 mph:  11.5 seconds
50 mph:  18.2 seconds
60 mph:  30.0 seconds
70 mph:  49.0 seconds
ROAD SPEEDS
At 1000 rpm in top gear:  15.7 mph
At 5000 rpm in top gear:  78.5 mph
FUEL CONSUMPTION at steady speed of
30 mph:   51 mpg
50 mph:   46 mpg
70 mph:   29 mpg
Normal overall fuel consumption: 35 to 40 mpg depending on driving methods.
40 mpg in 1959?! Where could we be now, if we'd focused on FE?

Now I admit there've been many other improvements. Driving that thing is quite an experience. You cannot get up to highway speeds between stop lights if they are closer together than a mile. You will think about whether a freeway entrance ramp is too short or steep. Originally it had no seat belts. We added lap belts years ago, but you keep in mind that about the first thing that will happen in an accident is you will be impaled on the steering wheel. It is so light that despite the extremely low horse power, you can spin the back wheels in 1st gear, a mere 1/2 inch of snow is enough for it to get stuck, you must take corners slow and easy or the tires will skid. Once we were on US 287 just south of Wichita Falls, TX, in an area where they have signs "dangerous crosswinds" and one of those got us. We were pushed onto the shoulder on the other side of the road in an eyeblink when the wind hit. Lucky no one was coming the other way at that moment.

As if having to take it easy on corners doesn't slow you down enough, you must come to a complete stop to get it into 1st, as, like reverse, 1st gear is not synchronized. Twice in the past 2 weeks, I've been passed on the shoulder by jerks who couldn't stand to wait for me to get up to speed. Added about 10 minutes to my 40 minute commute the day I took it to work.

Imagine the FE possibilities if an updated, modern Anglia could be built!
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Old 07-28-2007, 11:18 AM   #2
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Wow, that sounds like a "fun" car. I would be scared if I had to drive it though.

My car is not synchronized in first gear either, to get into it while still rolling a tad I have to go to 2nd or 3rd first and then go down to first gear.
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Old 07-28-2007, 11:38 PM   #3
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they did it was called a chevette LOL kidding...about the same mileage and same sad get up and go but if its anything like driving a chevette it makes you feel liek your driving a street legal go kart... i know all about the " 0-60 in 5 minutes" acceleration you speak of. i have seen one anglia at a cruise in before and id love to have one but ive never seen another one and id be worried about part availbility. (i can luckily run to any auto parts stores and get any part just as if it were a new car for my chevette, and some junkyards still have em) so how hard is it to find parts for those? did they use a common motor for that era?
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Old 07-29-2007, 01:47 PM   #4
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you can get parts for an Anglia

First, scared to drive it? No car from the 1950's is going to be much better. Different era, before Nader's "Unsafe at any speed". Now, it has better tires than was possible to get back in those days, but in other respects it has all the unsafe features and more of cars of those days. Should I volunteer it for Fear Factor? Who can drive the farthest, on, lets see... I95 from D.C. to Boston?

Some antiques are more popular. The Anglia, as a common boring commuter, errand runner, utility sort (utility in the sense of you wouldn't want to take it on a vacation, just use it for runs to the grocery store, not SUV or pickup truck sense) is one of the many less popular antiques. Though, they did give it a radical look, what with tail fins, bug eye headlights, and a reverse slope rear window.

For parts, you have to be creative and flexible. For a brake hose that had swelled shut (they can do that after 40 plus years), I was able to get a made to order replacement from a business that specializes in hydraulic systems of all sorts. Had to saw off the tip of one of the fittings to match the original, but otherwise they had what I needed-- same size parts as the original. Some later cars reused parts, which sometimes helps. For many parts, it costs, but there's a shop that specializes in antique British automobiles local to us. They do business all over the world. They refurbish old parts when they can, but they can actually build all new parts if needed. And as a last resort, we're able to repair or make what we need ourselves if we can't do it any other way. Can't get a generator? Then substitute an alternator from whatever, complete with suitable modules, home made mounting bracket, and whatever else is needed.
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Old 07-29-2007, 05:34 PM   #5
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ahh cool! i was just wondering. the way you made it sound makes it sound exatly liek a chevette from the 50's. they are commuter cars/grocery getters/and not so much long distance cruisers. i get people all the time comming up to me saying "ooh this was my first car! or this was the first brand new car i ever bought out of college" they were cheap and got you from A to B but they are fun to drive. and hey as long as you like it who cares what other people think.
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Old 07-29-2007, 08:23 PM   #6
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with non syncro trannys you have to dubble clutch, I recently learned how to do this in our Honda N600, as it's one of the modles that didn't come with a syncro tranny at all, but it's only takes a short time to learn how to dubble clutch, you simply let the clutch out while in neutral, and rev the engine to the vauge speed that the engine would be going in the gear you want to be in.
I read an artical that said that the honda 600's would get 130mpg at 30mph, and as low as 40mpg at 75mph, I really want to try taking a trip going only 30mph over a long distance.
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Old 07-29-2007, 08:29 PM   #7
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yea its gonna be interesting when i try to start/drive my model A for the first time. straight cut tranny gears! its gonna be double clutch fun...
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