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Terrortubby 22nd July 2008 09:41

Of tubby bald blokes and kit cars
My little Dutton Phaeton 1600 Crossflow

Kit cars? Funny bits of kit for a biker to be messing about with but needs must.
My back is now well beyond the sitting position demanded by most bikes and trikes, itís too painful for me to use them for more than 20 minutes or so. Iíve also had to concede that perhaps Iím a little afraid of the consequences of having a big Ďoffí and the worry that Wendy and the kids have expressed has tempered my usual ĎSod ití approach to life.

I had thought of getting a street legal kart or buggy but the affordable ones are slow and tiny, not suitable for one of my stature or one in need of a speed fix. So then, whatís the next best thing?
It has to be open top, it has to do more than the national limit. Not that I do unless on a closed road but itís nice to know you can. It needs to handle reasonably well, get a wiggle on and be fun to drive. It has to have a modicum of comfort and above all it needs to offer a little more protection than a bike or trike. Being strapped into a decent bucket seat within a roll cage is safer in my humble opinion.

I spent a bit of time thinking about building from scratch but the cost and time involved put me off. I had a look at a lot of ownerís club sites and manufacturers with a view to getting a completed car but again cost was an issue. Eventually I settled on a second hand car. A slightly tatty 1996 Dutton Phaeton S3 with a 1971 1600 X-Flow engine. Itís white, very white indeed but Wendy says I can change it as soon as. She normally doesnít like me changing perfectly good machinery on a whim or styling issue but this time she agrees, the white has to go.

Itís properly registered as a Dutton on the V5 and it came with 12 months MOT and 4 months tax on it. I paid the princely sum of £900-00 for it and drove it home hoping it would make it, I had to run the cooling fan constantly as the temperature gauge wasnít working. The petrol tank leaks but is currently being sorted and the wiring is a basket case. I have joined the Dutton owners club as I learned early on that ownerís clubs could be a goldmine of information and advice.

Having driven it for a week I got frustrated with the dash layout and the constant electrical niggles. The heater worked intermittently and the wipers and washers stopped working altogether.

The dash was easy to sort, I got some new marine plywood and used the old one to mark out the outline of the dash panel and then drilled it to suit where I need the switches and gauges for me to drive the car. Once all the bits were fitted to my liking I covered the dash with some cringe worthy Ďfauxí cowhide in black.
It looks not too shabby so will do for now. I will give it a rethink and do something different over the winter.

It goes off to my mate Anthony at Denton Auto Care next week to be measured for a new wiring loom. Heís going to draw it up with extra wiring for a fuel pump and stereo and a couple spare for a ciggy lighter and sat nav. I could get him to do the loom and wire the car but winter isnít too far off and I can make it in the warmth of our front room. I like learning new things and to be fair itís about time I could do wiring by myself. Iíve wired a couple of trikes on my own and the mental block I have needs sorting out.

When it goes on SORN at the end of September 08 the bodywork will be removed, the rust dealt with and the chassis painted. The chassis being the base of the car I think it needs refurbishing first. The engine and gearbox will get a bit of a tarting up at the same time. It will also be rewired and serviced. The new loom fitted and the bodywork replaced. The fuse box will be moved from next to the exhaust manifold and placed inside the tub. I canít help but think the fuses wonít be liking all that heat.

I have new seats coming, as the ones in the car are old and worn out in the comfort department. I also have two sets of 4-point harnesses to fit and the roll over hoop needs improving and mounts for the harness making up.

What I hope to do over the next two years is drive the car in summer and refurbish it in the winter. I am saving for some new dampers and need to give the springs a good clean and paint while the car is on blocks while we repaint the chassis; I hope to have the work done in time to drive the car to the NABD rally in May 09.
Thatíll be phase 1 of the refurbish, new wiring and the chassis cleaned, serviced and painted up. The roll bar and new seats fitted will see the end of the first part of the rebuild.

Winter 09 the carpet, the paint and bodywork will be redone along with some decent alloy floor plates to stop our heels going thru the carpet.

The only thing I canít decide on is whether to restore the car as an original Dutton kit with the Ford engine or do I ditch the big screen, modify the shell and fit a ZX 10 engine and go hill climbing? Would the DOC membership ever talk to me if I start chopping a Dutton about?

Man I hate making difficult decisions. Most folk that know me if asked would say Iíd go for the ZX 10 option but just occasionally I can be swayed by nostalgia.
If thereís a class to run a classic kit car in I may well stick with Mr. Fordís cross flow jobbie.

Time will tell.

Dash mock up

Ferg 22nd July 2008 18:35

Absolutely gorgeous Dutton.
A car of it's time and as good in those terms as any of the Sevens today.
My mate Bob has one (well, two to be exact!) and he has 5 linked it and modded the chassis and body a lot, but it was rough to start with....

Terrortubby 23rd July 2008 08:58

It's a little weather beaten and needs a bit of work but it'll do for me at the moment.

It needs a rewire as a matter of urgency and the fuel pick up in the tank needs sorting out. The engine keeps stalling at junctions and I'm pretty sure it could do with a bit of a tune but no point doing that until I get a decent air filter fitted.

Hopefully come next spring I should have a sorted if somewhat tatty little car to mess about in.:smokin:



addict 6th August 2008 23:01

i had one of them when i was 19
i never liked the back end mutch.
things i found to be a pain with the sar were
engine mount brackets were to far apart resulting in the engine mountings tearing them selves lose all the time.
the gear box had to come upwards to removeit from the car. body off job.
the chasi was not that wel thought out and would bennifit from a few fish tails welding in to triangulate the chasie a little.
whe driving in the rain there was a pool of water on the bonnet it just sat there and swirled.
in the rain braking caused the pool of water on the roof to slosh down the screen.
my old car was rather tail happy.
Q???wmp was red gell coat.

addict 6th August 2008 23:04

o and the steering joint sawed throu the bottom hose on the rad after a while

Terrortubby 11th August 2008 09:38

Cheers for the comments, even the negative ones.

Yep I know it's not the pinnacle of kit car technology but hey, I'm on a budget, not well and only a so so fitter fabricator so getting a car that needs a bit of work is cheaper and easier for me at the moment.

If I still have it in a few years I'll use it as a deppy on a new kit and build my own car, at the moment though it fills the gap created by not being able to ride bikes or trikes and I like it enough to mess about with it for a bit.

Glass half full IMO and it gets me out of the house enough to be worth every penny.

Anybody wants me I'll be in the garage playing with fibreglass matting and resin.:icon_mrgreen:

alvin 12th August 2008 02:29

mirage countach
no ! i didnt build it .but i know a man who does.
i have built and or modded mny cars over the years .
hope u get to see this one .al>>> ashtead surrey
oh it may be up for sale
also have a locust 7 twin 40 dcoes piper 270 cam minilites for sale offers?
or will p/ex a ford ka' collection or similar
away for a while . back 24th aug.sri pic file too big ; needs kwalitee!

Terrortubby 18th August 2008 22:43

I have been busy, I'm waiting on a new wiring loom so I can fit my new electronic dash with all it's clever little bits .

If you look at the rear quarter panel you can see where the fuel cap used to be. It's on the top of the mudguard now to stop fuel spilling when cornering hard to the left.

The 4 point harnesses are fitted and a lot better than the old inertia belts that were in the car

A ways to go but I'm having fun. It's actually BRG under the white so I've decided to restore the paint to the original colour.

BRG is the only colour that makes sense really.

More mayhem when I recover from this lot.


alvin 21st August 2008 23:53

NICE ONE gary!

Terrortubby 22nd August 2008 17:00


Originally Posted by alvin (Post 13036)

Yes it can feel good at times. Thanks.;)

I'm no mechanic or panel beater or sprayer though.
I'm just an enthuiastic ametuer and it shows in the results occasionally.

I'm getting set to pull the car apart in the next 4 weeks, it goes on sorn at the end of September.

I need to tidy the chassis up and the bodywork needs a paint.
I have got a head start on the body, doing repairs to the GRP and getting it all rubbed down.

The rubbing down is killing me though, cold days, water and arthritis are a bad combination and I'm paying for the over enthuiasm at the moment.

Mind you I'm a lot happier now that the fuel stays in the tank, It was a bit of a pain with fuel all over the road and side of the car.
thing that I'm nonplussed about is how the previous two owners never saw fit to move the fuel filler cap.

Must have liked living dangerously.:icon_confused: :icon_confused:

Any pics of your 2B?

More mayhem as it happens.



jcb 24th August 2009 14:02

i had one of those,bright yellow with a six cylinder triumph motor in it,great fun tho a little skittish at times.

keztec 24th August 2009 21:35

nice dutton always had a soft spot for em ,my brother has a dutton leggera with a 2.1 pinto in it and it suprises some of the more modern stuff.
ive got midtec spyder v6 and a carlton carrera v8 at the mo and love messing with them as much as driving them.
kitcars are fantastic,even if you didnt originally build it you can put your own stamp on it .
keep up the good work ,look forward to more pics.

boylers11 6th February 2011 20:30

I used to own this Dutton!!! I notice there hasn't been any updates on this thread for a long time. Does anyone know what state it's in now? OR how I could contact 'Terrytubby' to enquire about it's progress? :loco:

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