History of a 1962 Austin Healey BT7 Mk II Restoration
The engine was dis-assembled in February 1985, and found to be a good "boat-anchor".
After reviewing several options, I decided to purchase a spare engine and have the head re-done,
leaving the lower end as is. After the machine work was completed by Fourintune, the engine was
assembled and painted in April 1986. In November of 1986, we moved to another house. Not trusting
the "movers" with my Healey parts, I decided to have some friends help me move the car
and engine. As a matter-of-fact, these were the only items the
moving company did not move. I towed the car with my IH Scout, and
the engine was put on blocks in a pick-up truck. Wouldn't you know
it, when we were unloading the engine from the truck with a hydraulic
lift, and it was ready to lower to rest in my garage, one of my
friends accidently hit the release lever. Fortunately no-one was
under it, unfortunately it dropped 6" onto the pan, shortening it by
an inch or so. The pan had a dent in it before, now it had an even
larger one. No damage to the oil pump, but that is the real story of
how the engine got a better-than-new straightend and re-welded pan,
and another paint job. Next time - trust the movers.
In the summer of 1989 the chassis was dis-assembled and then sandblasted in September. Being from Texas, there was very little rust. The floor boards, trunk floor, and a spot under the battery were repaired, and then everything was epoxy primered. By October 1989 the frame was finished in black enamel. All original fasteners were wire-brushed and painted or clear-coated, depending on original finish. Where possible, stainless ones were substituted.
In 1991, I started purchasing lots of parts for the restoration. Suppliers of choice were Healey Surgeons, Inc. and Victoria British Ltd. Used parts came from British Sports Car Center. The master cylinder seals, wheel cylinders, engine mounts, and many bushings were replaced. In 1993, a new clutch, sports coil, oil line, carb kit and new floats were purchased. Also, a new gas tank, front brake lines, speedo cable, tach cable, battery cables and hose sets, plus many miscellaneous nuts, bolts, and fasteners were needed.
In November 1993 I cleaned and rebuilt the heater with new water and fresh air hoses. I installed a new wiring harness, and checked out all the electrical connections. I rebuilt the four front seat sliders, replacing the ball bearings. Rebuilt front shock absorbers were installed. The engine and transmission were installed. The driveshaft was cleaned and painted. The engine was started for the first time in November 1993. A stainless steel exhaust system was painted with high-temperature paint and installed.
'62 Austin Healey restoration, Part One
'62 Austin Healey restoration, Part Three
'62 Austin Healey restoration, Part Four
'62 Austin Healey restoration, Part Five