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Blog: Octane Cars


1976 Rover 3500 - April 2010

Braking issues bring 'daily driver' dream to a halt

Keith Adams - Assistant Editor

Rover 3500

Having waited more than two years for my Rover to return from Poland following its restoration, I was looking forward to getting it back on the road as my new daily driver. That was the plan, anyway – but, like all good ones, it went to pot quite rapidly. The first problem was that since it returned to the UK I’d driven it only in and out of the garage; although the brakes felt spongey and the handbrake was disconnected, there seemed little else wrong.

With that in mind, I delivered the car to MOTEST in Farnham to prepare the old girl for its MoT (the first in six years). Given that MOTEST used to be an Austin-Rover dealer, and the chief mechanic working on my car was an ex-ARG apprentice, it seemed fitting. I left the car with the guys and awaited my fate – and a week or so later the news came back: things weren’t good. The car needed new front calipers, backing plates for the drums at the rear, linkages, pipes and a compensator. In other words, near enough a full brake overhaul. Oh dear.

As for the twin SUs, they’d need stripping and rebuilding, and the steering column was going to require new bushes.
Still, once it’s done, I can’t think of anything else that will need attention, although I have just picked up an LPG kit and am deliberating whether to fit it or not. That would make fuelling less expensive and give me more inclination to use the car on a daily basis. But there are some concerns about the installation – I don’t want to cut any holes in the bodywork, and it needs to be reversible… Decisions, decisions.

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