Article No.4: XK140 Project

Welcome to another of our ‘Articles’ – a blog post illustrating the ins and outs here at Carn Bosavern Garage, based in St.Just, Cornwall. Ranging from details on a full restoration, to the intricacies of an engine rebuild, we take a look at both current and previous restorations on vehicles such as MGA’s, MGB’s, plus Triumph TR2’s, TR3’s and TR4’s. We will also give an update on our current stock of classic cars for sale and used cars for sale.

In this article we take our first look at the 1956 Jaguar XK140 we are restoring for a customer.

This 1956 Jaguar XK140 SE is a customers vehicle that has been recently imported back over from America, where it spent its life in a dry state. It is a matching numbers car and has the rare factory fitted ‘C’ cylinder head, giving the car 210BHP. Given the originality of the car, it is being methodically stripped so that as much of the original car is reused where applicable, helping to keep the heritage of this rare unmolested XK140.

We have a great relationship with the customer, who previoulsy had an MGA restored by us. Like ourselves, they have a real passion for classic cars and restoring something back to its former glory. They are just as involved as we are, helping restore components themselves as well as researching and understanding the best methods needed to achieve our desired end product.

The body has been removed from the chassis and we have stripped all the steering and suspension components from the chassis. The bare chassis has been sand blasted, etch primed, primed and painted in 2 pack satin black. Due to their excellent original condition, the suspension arms / components have been treated the same way. These have been painted and new polybushes fitted. The suspension has been built back up, reusing all original nuts and bolts where possible. The front brakes have been upgraded to disc brakes, with upgraded AVO shock absorbers also fitted.

To properly assess the condition of the bodyshell, it has been gently blasted to reveal any potential corrosion. Once blasted it has been sprayed and left in etch primer. We then carried out substantial fabrication works, including to weld in place body panels and plates where needed, e.g boot floor, outer sills, B posts etc. This involved a lot of re-fitting and removing the body from the chassis, to make sure all panel gaps and alignments are correct. A substantial amount of time has been put in to assuring panel gaps and alignment are correct.

While the body is at the paint shop having preparation work carried out, we fitted the fully rebuilt engine, new Tremec 5 speed gearbox and twin stainless steel exhaust system to the chassis. Now a rolling/steering chassis, we fitted the old wheels and moved it in to our showroom. This is now safely in storage, waiting for the body to return from the bodyshop.

This is the first article in a series on the Jaguar XK140, the second is coming soon.