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Go Back   Madabout Kitcars Forum > Show off your cars > Show us your Kit Cars

Show us your Kit Cars You've just taken 2 years to build your pride and joy, right? Then why not show it off here. Let us see your creations.

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  #1  
Old 22nd January 2008, 17:06
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mikejupp mikejupp is offline
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Default Nimrod @ 36

The stuff you find when your searching the Internet for other things!
(in my case I was researching Sweeny Todd.
Was he an actual historical character?..and the answer is, yes he was!)

A Kit Car site! Brilliant!
Here's mine (taken recently - complete with new ironing board on the back!)


and some taken in 1998



There's a lot of posher and far more serious cars than my NIMROD (above) on your site, but I bet there's not too many Fibre-glass kit-cars that are older.
I designed it in 1969 while I was working on a Free-paper in Chichester.
(My car was eventually launched onto the Nation's tarmac in 1972!)
I was asked by the owners of the Paper if I could design a car. As I was, and still am, a cartoonist!...most of the cars around then were a joke..so I thought 'One more won't do any harm'
Poor old Ray Jay of Hunston (one of the best carpenter/joiner/glass fibre constructors EVER!!) was press-ganged into making my soppy drawings into a real vehicle(s). He almost single-handedly created the Nimrods, making the wooden plugs, moulds, jigs, and actual cars during the 1970's! (about a dozen I think?)

There's a photo on my website Forum of a squadron of Nimrods gathered together at the 1985 Stoneleigh Kit-Car Show!
http://www.webnet2000.cc/mikejupp/modules/newbb/
The black one was shipped off to Germany last year and one of the white ones has just made it to its new owner in Florida!
Where's the red one?

If anyone knows of anyone who still owns one of our Nimrods, either a Ray Jay built car..or the later Nigel Talbot kit..can they let me know on my NIMROD (Juppy's home-made car) thread.
I don't know whether there is still a 'Nimrod Owners Club'?..if there isn't there should be! In fact if there isn't?... I'll start one with me as the only member! (though Groucho Marx's comment about clubs comes to mind!)
Anyway...Ta muchly!
Mike Jupp
Bognor Regis

Last edited by mikejupp; 22nd January 2008 at 17:29..
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  #2  
Old 23rd January 2008, 08:22
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Hi Mike, welcome aboard the forum.

Would love to know more about the car, I love the older stuff. Any information you can provide about you the manufacturer and the car and I will happily put the details onto Madabout and also www.classic-kitcars.com, a site mid-construction but live as it's taking me so long to finish it www.classic-kitcars.com gives me scope to put more information on regarding the manufacturer and cars.

Cheers, John

Madabout-Kitcars.com
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  #3  
Old 23rd January 2008, 11:58
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Hello John!
You asked for it...so for the first time here, for anyone who is remotely interested?..is the real NIMROD story.

Your Website name sums it all up! - 'Mad aboutkitcars' ...You have to be barking mad to have anything to do with one!
Designing the Nimrod came about for two reasons;
1, Because I was asked, "'ere Juppy! Can you design a Beach-Buggy type car?" and,
2, I was so p***ed off with every car I had ever owned crumbling to rust, that the idea of a new, rust free car was very appealing.

As far as influences are concerned (as in design... not 'under the')
I'd always been fascinated at how far advanced the WWII German military had been..from aircraft down to scout cars.
I knew about the ubiquitous VW Kubelwagen (below)


but was amazed when I first saw the amphibious version, the VW 'Schwimmwagen'



It was that amphibious vehicle that really influenced my design, I created the 'Ski-jump' back to be able to fit an outboard motor, and the recessed edge to take a flotation collar. None of that happened through lack of loot...but the flip-up back was a great piece of serendipity as it acts as a spoiler, and the recessed edge acts as one large mudguard! The rear mudflaps were meant to add to the impression of wide 'Beach-buggy' tyres. My car has Dunlop 165/70 R10's.
One last thing that didn't happen through lack of loot!..The roof was supposed to go to the back, to give the profile an 'L' configuration instead of the 'T' shaped profile it finished up with. The only way that could have been achieved was with an aluminium extrusion!
VERY expensive!.... VERY didn't happen!

Anyway.....

The two Del-Boys that had asked me to 'design' a vehicle (i.e. draw a pretty picture of a car, as opposed to technical DESIGN)..thought it would only take 6 months from conception to sales!
Pillocks!
They found a local company to make the chassis and someone (RAY JAY) to construct the moulds. Ray got stuck into the project using his own money and time. When the 6 months was up and there was only a semi-finished chassis to show for it, Plank and Plonker skiddadled leaving Ray in the lurch!

I was only just out of Art College and had about as much money then as I have now 36 years later! i.e. ****-all!
Somehow I managed to scrape enough together to pay Ray for one Nimrod, then my mate the actor Nelson Ward said he'd have one..so Ray kept on with the project.
Have you ever noticed that an extinct Ichthyosaur looks very much like a dolphin? No? Well it does! Both body shapes evolved to fit their environments.
The reason I say this is because several Mini-based 'Buggies/things' started to creep onto the roads from the late 1960's onwards..and some of them looked very similar!
I was amazed (and suspicious!) when I first saw the great BARRY STIMSON'S
Stimson Bug!

The truth is that Barry's car made out onto the street BEFORE Ray's prototype! I had never seen Barry's car, but I suppose there's only so much you can do styling a 'buggy' with no doors around a mini sub-frame?
(Below) Ray Jay's Prototype 997/8 c.c. cooper engine, Nimrod minus rollbar moulding. C. 1971

For nearly 2 years, every Saturday morning, I drove from Bognor to Ray's parents farmhouse at Birdham. Progress was painfully slow as Ray had to earn his money with other work. I still remember the magic moment of seeing the first complete body shell attached to the chassis. It's a strange feeling to actually be able to touch a figment of your own imagination!
Here's a grainy photo I took of it outside Ray's workshop..bithplace of the Nimrods. My own car's bodyshell can just be seen inside the shed.

Ray and I got publicity for the Nimrod from several car mags of the time, Hot-Car, Custom Car, Car and Car Conversions etc. All were impressed with its handling! (some not so sure about my design?)
However, Ray and I still say there's NOTHING that can go around corners as quick as that mother!!!

It appears that we had the worlds first side-impact bars as the 1" box-frame chassis is a wrap-around that comes above the level of the driver's waist! The roll-over bar is a one piece, shaped scaffold tube that has it's roots imbedded in the chassis at floor pan level.
The floor itself is Marine Plywood. The bodyshell and parts lay-up are REALLY SOLID, about quarter to half an inch thick in places!
Purely for the sake of aesthetics, I wanted square headlights, so Ray made the headlight mouldings to take the then available Hillman Hunter lights.
Hunter lights were also good for the back as they were flat
The loom was standard mini, but the fuel tank was from a Mini-van. A Mini-Van was also the donor of the rear 'Swinging arm' suspension.
The springs themselves came from a motor-bike (Ray was well into his moter bikes.. and I haven't a clue what sort of bike they came from?)
The roof was/is made of black vinyl with 4 transparent 'windows'. It unzips to be rolled and fastened on the top of the 'T-Bar' The original roofs were supplied from our specifications by the then 'CAR HOOD COMPANY' of Hailsham,East Sussex. They still exist, under another name..and STILL have the Nimrod templates! They will shortly have a customer in me, as my car's roof has been ****ed for years!

Anyway, I took delivery of my shiny white Nimrod in 1972 and used it as my car for the next 26 years. Garaged in 1998 (being a Dad costs money!)..it was reborn last year!

Incidentally, its longest journey was in 1974 when me and my buddy Graham drove to Dracula's Castles in Wallachia and Transylvania (as you do!)
You have to look at the cars of the era, especially ones behind the Iron Curtain, to realise what an impact the Nimrod had!
At one point when we parked up in Tirgoviste, the car was mobbed by a crowd of several hundred natives! It took us bloody hours to get back into it...and half my 'Custom Car' vinyl stickers were nicked! (The other half disappeared one night when we were asleep in the thing!)
It's a hell of a long way to Romania and back for a mini powered Nimrod and trailer..but it did it with no problems!

I drove off into the world of advertising and TV. Moved to London, Holland, Germany, South Korea and finally to Northern California to make my own Cartoon TV series.
Ray, being the superb craftsman, became Product Manager for Fairline Boats at Chichester Marina...and is now Head of a prestige boatyard at Birdham Pool.

I'm still as poor as a cathedral rodent but......
If enough people buy my Jigsaw Puzzles?..
http://www.webnet2000.cc/mikejupp/modules/newbb/
...I should have my car looking good for some car shows later in the year.
(below) Mine at night!..about 2 months ago.



However!..as any mad Kit-Car owner knows!...
'The road to Hell is paved with good intention'

Last edited by mikejupp; 23rd January 2008 at 13:23..
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  #4  
Old 23rd January 2008, 23:37
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Great story Mike and still the proud owner after 36 years

I'll make sure I get it listed asap.

John
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  #5  
Old 24th January 2008, 09:22
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Thanks John!
BTW, I've just had an email from the American Nimrod owner. He is about to put it into a local workshop to have it restored. The place is owned by a Brit Ex-pat. Some workshop!!!...Take a look at what he's done to a Mini!
http://www.iresonmotorsports.com/
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  #6  
Old 20th June 2008, 20:25
alexthebrit1322 alexthebrit1322 is offline
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Default The American Nimrod

Hi Mike

My names Alex and I live in Florida and I recently purchased the black and white Nimrod that was imported over here earlier this year. The previous owner told me he could no longer afford to have both the Nimrods and his other cars because he was moving to Sante Fe California. Me and my father are both originally from Southampton, England and we moved over here 8 years ago and we have been wanting to have a British car over here but we couldn't find one. But last week we stumbled onto this Nimrod. Our plans for it are to clean it up and redo the dash because it is a disaster (switches all over the place) and then we are hoping to polish the fiberglass back up, because it has become quite dull from sitting around. Also we are having a problem keeping the engine cool. The previous owner told me it was because the fan is reversed but that isn't it and we have bypassed the heater because obviously in Florida we don't need it but I was just wondering if you had any experience with the cooling of these things. Alright well I hope to hear back from you and this is a pretty cool little car.

thanks alex
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Old 20th June 2008, 21:14
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Default Hot Nimrods

Hi Alex!
Firstly, congratties and thanks, for keeping one of Ray and my Nimrods alive!
If you goto-

http://www.webnet2000.cc/mikejupp/mo..._id=17&forum=9

You'll see my car (Nimrod production #1 ) and a few others!

My Nimrod had the same heating problem, which was easy to solve. It's slashing down with rain here in Bognor Regis this evening...but as soon as I can, I'll take a photo of the engine bay and post it up.
You'll see that I've added a plastic header tank. It only holds a pint or so of water, but that's enough to do the trick! (Without cutting horrible scoop holes in the bodywork) Mine hasn't ever overheated since 1972.
As for the colour! I imagine yours is still the original gel-coat? You might want to do what I did and re-spray the white bodywork with Ford 'Diamond White'
It's such a small car that it wouldn't cost THAT much!
What I do suggest is that you put some graphics lining along the bodywork. (take a look at what I've done) I did it to break up the slab-sided housebrick feel of the vehicle. When I originaly designed it, I wanted the roof to go all the way to the back. That would have made a lot of difference to the profile. However neither Ray or I could afford the aluminium extrusion and the tooling neccessary to make it! So we're stuck with what we've got.

It's spooky that your mesage came in this evening...mine's going to have some exhaust pipe replacement tomorrow to get it through its MOT.
I've got a Cherry Bomb 'silencer'(?) on my car, you might want to do the same?
Keep in touch Alex, here and on my Nimrod thread!!
Cheers,
Mike Jupp
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  #8  
Old 22nd June 2008, 00:35
alexthebrit1322 alexthebrit1322 is offline
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Default About the overheating

That would be great if you could post those pictures of the setup you did. It really is becoming a problem.
thanks alex
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  #9  
Old 22nd June 2008, 09:52
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Hi Alex!
I can't take photos until tomorrow (Monday) as my little car is recuperating after it's exhaust pipe/manifold operation. At the moment, it's in post-operative care in a private ward at the local garage. I'll be collecting it in the morning!
The heatwave of 1976 saw temperatures here of the same magnitude as Florida. I had no overheating problems (well, I did, but the Nimrod didn't!)...AND, I was living in, stop, start, stop, stop, stop London at the time.
Keep the Faith,
MJ

Last edited by mikejupp; 22nd June 2008 at 09:54.. Reason: I'm an illiterate pillock!
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Old 26th December 2008, 19:07
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Hello... I remember the yellow Nimrod that Nelson Ward had. I was at school when Nelson was a teacher at the Nevill Comp in Hove, which must have been around 1974. Im sure that Nelsons car was an "N" reg?

Nelson was then pruducing a show (Dracula) in Brighton and we went to Pinewood film studio and to look at their prop shop and at the time we went Mike Jupps place. Although I am sure Mike wont remember that.

Anyway, that was long time ago, however, around 10 years ago (I think) I caught site of a Nimrod for sale on a car sales forecourt in Old Shoreham Rd, Hove. This was a white one and I believe there was an airbrush cosmic scene on the bonnet.

Digital cameras were not around at the time but I rushed home to get my 35mm. Unfortunately the images didnt turn out very well and by the time I got the time to go during the day the car had gone.

I have often wondered what happened to Nelsons "N" reg yellow Nimrod... and where that white one went.

My own baby is an "S" reg blue cavalier coupe.

Andrew Peters Hove, East Sussex
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Old 14th January 2010, 02:47
archebald23 archebald23 is offline
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im planning on doing the same set up with my exhaust pipe, ill post some pics later so we can compare.. where are your pictures? how much was the complete setup?

Last edited by archebald23; 19th January 2010 at 01:28..
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Old 24th February 2010, 11:24
dracos dracos is offline
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archebald you gota ny pics yet?? looking forward to seeing Buy to Let Insurance when you do get around to it!!

Last edited by dracos; 30th September 2011 at 11:16..
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Old 17th August 2010, 12:35
andybenn andybenn is offline
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Default Nimrod soft top

Hi, Have just aquired a pile of parts, amongst which is a brand new Nimrod soft top. Anyone interested?
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  #14  
Old 8th September 2010, 14:53
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Wotcha Andy!
Yes, I'm interested!
Can you contact me on;
mikejupp@webnet2000.net

cheers,
MJ
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