Vanden Plas limousine new member my experience so far

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Vanden Plas limousine new member my experience so far

Postby LeeDM4 » Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:26 am

Hi, just wanted to say hello and share my experience so far,

I've owned my dm4 limousine around a year now, she's a 1960 example with 2 owners from new (same family), we bought it as it's a little different with maybe a few weddings in mind although so far hasn't made it more than a mile from my house.
It was bought from a member on here from Ireland, it's not like me to not view a car before purchasing however due to availability and after speaking in length to the owner I was comfortable paying for it and having it shipped.
The pictures of the car and his description were some what exaggerated however, I bought a fully working/running useable car but when it turned up it looked like it had sat for 20 years, flat tyres, dust and an almost un startable engine, he told me it was just a plug gone down so that's where I started.
New plugs, leads, dizzy cap, rotor arm, points, oil change which having owned many cars is the worst I'd ever seen.
The car ran fine until it got warmed up then it would almost cut out and I struggled to make it home, plumes of white smoke followed me.
Having run out of ideas and thinking it was something more serious I sent it out to a restoration company who quoted me nearly 5k to take the engine out and rebuild it as they said it was lack of compression in cylinders 3 and 4,no thanks so I had them bring it back to me.
On its return it wouldn't start at all, now I'm not stupid, not totally anyway, sounded like timing was way out and I'm pretty sure they did this on purpose so I'd have to take it back to them, just my thoughts and later it would be confirmed.
I decided to have a go myself so set about removing the cylinder head, 3 hours later it was off and there was the problem, cracked in 6 places but the worst was indeed 3 and 4 cylinders.
I set about finding a replacement head but quite clearly this wasn't going to be easy, found one at a parts specialist who wanted 2k for it, won't mention names but no chance.
Months went by and nothing came up, a friend of mine then showed me an old eBay ad with a guy selling a princess that had parts stored for 30 years plus, after a phone call and a long drive I had 2 complete engines and another head so 3 cylinder heads altogether, the head that was spare and had cost me £50 is the one I used, totally redone and now fitted, no cracks or damage but the car still wouldn't start, had fuel spark and was trying but nothing, luckily the same friend who found the engines has good old school friends one of which got my car started after a few hours, came down to timing and points, timing was way out for some reason funny as I'd never touched or moved the distributor.
That's basically where I'm at now, car runs lovely but out of mot and has a blow from the exhaust, can't do much about it as I'm moving house so she has to wait, be nice if I could find out when my car was manufactured as before 1960 I wouldn't need to mot it? So I've read unless I'm wrong, was registered October 1960.

Never been shafted by a club member with any car previously as usually genuine and love their cars, the owner of this one new exactly what was wrong but chose to be less than truthful although it's also down to me for not viewing, saying that with the symptoms you'd always be thinking something simple.
Still have the two spare engines with heads which I will list.

Just in the process of applying for full club membership so will update as I go and find some pictures of my car.

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a) Generally to help and encourage members to maintain these fine cars in good running order and appearance.

b) To organise rallies and meetings nationwide, and to field an annual Show Day. Members can compete at these events for trophies, these being awarded for the best cars in restoration, and most used classes.

c) To offer technical advice to those people seeking help. We also help those not wishing to carry out their own repairs, as some of our members are motor engineers and specialise in the various models within the club.

d) Spares are offered for sale through the club magazine, and several of our members have stocks of spares for sale.

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