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Mick O'Malley 26th January 2017 08:02

Mick O'Malley's Moss Monaco
5 Attachment(s)
When this was launched in 1984 I was just starting building my first kit, a Dutton Phaeton II, bought new for £752. The Monaco, at £499 immediately appealed to me with its Triumph underpinnings so I sent off for the brochure and had a quiet daydream.

33 years and 15 or so kit cars came and went.

I'm on the Moss page on Facebook and on Boxing morning a post and picture appeared which I 'liked' and commented on to the effect that it was my dream car. A private message appeared on FB a few days later asking if I was interested in an abandoned project. It turned out that the owner didn't think he'd ever be able to finish it, and, as it had been given to him in similar circumstances, I could have it FOC on the condition that I completed it!

I went and had a look yesterday, it's eminently do-able and I'm collecting it on Monday on a low loader. As soon as my Tribute A352 passes its second MOT (imminent) I'll set to.

peterux 26th January 2017 09:09

Wow, that looks like a heap of fun!!

hurnleft 26th January 2017 09:10

Great project, I'll be following your progress updates

NeilF355 26th January 2017 10:27

Here's one at the Tatton Park Passion for Power show a couple of years ago.

Good luck with the project.

Car photographer 26th January 2017 15:51


molleur 26th January 2017 17:52

Nice! Mick 'O, should be a straight forward resto.

Mick O'Malley 26th January 2017 18:34

1 Attachment(s)
Jumping the gun, I know, but this is the colour I fancy but with gold wires and grille.

molleur 26th January 2017 18:36

Absolutely agree with the color. Very period too.

redratbike 26th January 2017 19:12

They always looked like a dustbin on wheels to me but in a good way ha ha ...

I hope he negotiated a ride in the finished article?

Car photographer 27th January 2017 01:22


Originally Posted by Mick O'Malley (Post 85691)
Jumping the gun, I know, but this is the colour I fancy but with gold wires and grille.

I agree, but then I am biased :)

Paul L 27th January 2017 07:52

Mick - It certainly looks like a challenging project.

If it helps, Micky1Mo's Moss Monaco build thread is here:

And this is Car Photographer's colour scheme on his Fiorano.

Good luck, Paul. :)

Mick O'Malley 27th January 2017 08:11

Thanks Paul. I'm just signing up to Photobucket so future posts will be a little more viewer friendly.

I'm straining at the leash to get crawling over the Monaco, dismantling and making lists of jobs and purchases.

With spring and summer on the way I'll be able to make a decent start between sorties to Castle Combe, Shelsley Walsh and Prescott in the A352 'D'.

Happy Days :)

Regards, Mick

Mick O'Malley 27th January 2017 08:24

Testing, testing.

This is the inspirational picture posted on FB on Christmas Day.

Mick O'Malley 28th January 2017 09:38

Happy Days
Bit of a non-sequitur, but yesterday, whilst searching though my mountain of kit car photo's for Monaco ones, I found this.

I'd not long finished the blue Phaeton II, 1300 Triumph powered, when the grey one came to my notice. I paid £350. It was Ford 1700 V4 powered. This engine earned a few bob at the scrap merchants, all it was good for, to be replaced by a 1300 X-Flow and passed on to a club member. He completed it, had it sprayed, and promptly wrote it off.

My friend's red Phaeton started life in black with 1300 Triumph power, in the incarnation pictured it had a 1500 Triumph. He then painted in in Marlboro Mclaren dayglo and white and installed a 2500 Ford V6. We went to Le Mans in it in '91, blowing a half shaft on the way back. Its fourth and final incarnation was in BRG with a yellow centre stripe and a 3500 Rover V8. I took it round Castle Combe and can confirm it was a rocket. I'll post more pictures if I find any.

Regards, Mick

Mick O'Malley 30th January 2017 07:08

Which Kit Guide Winter/Spring 1991
I dug this out yesterday. I like the way the scanner has sepia toned it!

Regards, Mick

Mick O'Malley 31st January 2017 08:17

The Monaco Has Landed
Collected the new project yesterday with a thoroughly professional and competitive local one-man-band. Less than three hours for a 100 mile round trip!

I removed the body to reveal the Spitfire underpinnings. The existing chassis frame has been modified in an unacceptable fashion so I'm now in the market for a tax-exempt Spitfire, hopefully with sound underpinnings but rubbish bodywork.

The wings, their stays, the air scoop, the gearbox/transmission covers, the headlamp pods (which I'm advised are fashioned from 'unobtanium'), the prop-shaft, steering column/wheel and a spare gearbox I've stashed in my shed. I'll spread them on the lawn for a picture when the weather permits.

The engine turns freely. I'll Redex the bores, spin it without plugs until I get oil pressure, then run it for assessment, again when weather permits as the A352 is in my man cave awaiting the delivery of MOT related purchases.

That last one isn't very special!

Regards, Mick

oxford1360 31st January 2017 09:53

Holy cr*p, those rear suspension fixings look terrifying.

Looking forward to seeing this come together - the Monaco and Mamba were my "dream" cars when I was a lad. Of course there is no link that the first books I took out from West Norwood library were Herald and Spitfire Haynes manuals.

redratbike 31st January 2017 17:20

Rear wheel steering?

Can't the chassis be saved Mick?

Mick O'Malley 1st February 2017 05:52


Originally Posted by redratbike
Can't the chassis be saved Mick?

Only if I want the completed car to need an IVA. I think the likelihood of its passing one would be remote. Those modifications are certainly without the DVLA's parameters for a simple re-body.

Regards, Mick

redratbike 1st February 2017 16:16


Originally Posted by Mick O'Malley (Post 85844)
Only if I want the completed car to need an IVA. I think the likelihood of its passing one would be remote. Those modifications are certainly without the DVLA's parameters for a simple re-body.

Regards, Mick

I see what you meant now

DaveP 1st February 2017 16:24

Good luck finding another spit chassis.

Love that pic of the Phaetons. They remind me of when I hankered after a Kitcar in my youth.


Mick O'Malley 2nd February 2017 08:04

Facebook to the rescue. Again!
I've been tracking Spitfires on Ebay thinking that I'd be spending a small fortune buying a complete car, then having all the time and trouble of breaking it and selling the unwanted bits.

This morning I thought I'd have a look in the 'Small Chassis Triumphs' FB group (without much hope) just in case there was one advertised. What popped up was a comprehensively refurbished chassis with a V5 but minus wheels and engine that the owner had decided to break as he hadn't been able to sell as a unit.

A contact message from me elicited a prompt 'phone reply and after verifying exactly what was for sale we agreed £700 including delivery tomorrow!

Serendipity indeed!

Regards, Mick

redratbike 2nd February 2017 11:14

Nice find....I just need to find a vitesse or herald chassis like that now ha ha

molleur 2nd February 2017 14:07

Excellent find, and lucky too!

Mick O'Malley 3rd February 2017 06:53

Happy Days

Originally Posted by DaveP
Love that pic of the Phaetons. They remind me of when I hankered after a Kitcar in my youth.

Le Mans '90: Before the off, Camping Bleu and on the Mulsanne Straight.

Regards, Mick

Mick O'Malley 3rd February 2017 08:06

And again
This is the final incarnation of the red Phaeton in the photo' above, Rover 3.5 V8 with an SD1 five speed gearbox.

I was only gently short-shifting (the owner told me I wasn't to take it on the track, just display it - he was on holiday), but it still easily attained 125mph on Farm Straight at the 1992 Castle Combe Kit Car Day. I thought I'd got away with it but the orange dot on the windscreen from the previous year prompted the photographer and a set of contact prints was on his mat when he returned. He forgave me (sort of) and let me order this :)

The Lotus colours were inspired by my own new scheme above, Marlboro Mclaren was a bit old hat by then.

Regards, Mick

Mick O'Malley 3rd February 2017 13:53

Chassis Delivery
The vendor arrived bang on time at 1000 with the chassis on his trailer. We transferred two wheels from the other chassis and wheeled it to its new home. It comes complete with the factory chassis plates, is tax free and is eligible for black and silver number plates. He registered it in my name and address on line on his hand held device on the spot. Cool!

He was on his way up to Coventry to pick up an almost complete Herald based Moss Midge for £200! Not a bad day's business for either of us!

Regards, Mick

molleur 3rd February 2017 14:04

Love it when a plan comes together! Congrats..

DaveP 3rd February 2017 21:30

Thanks for the Phaeton pics by the way


Paul L 4th February 2017 09:25

Mick - Great news on finding another Spitfire chassis. :cool:

Mick O'Malley 6th February 2017 06:59

Buy buy buy!
Thanks for the kind words guys.

I've bought a stack of bits and pieces for the dash over the weekend. Once they've all arrived I'll post a picture.

I'm going to knock on my neighbour's door in a minute as he's borrowed my Machine Mart engine crane and I want to do the transplant today.

Straining at the leash? Yes!

Regards, Mick

Mick O'Malley 6th February 2017 13:27

This morning I put on two boiler suits, woolly hat, fingerless gloves and went out to shift the two chassis around into position for the engine swap over. With only two wheels on each this was a bit of a hernia special :( .

My neighbour was yet to dig out my crane so I set-to and began removing the starter motor, gearbox rubbers and bell-housing bolts as I always like to ensure a clutch is free whilst it's nice and accessible. Nothing put up much resistance, especially the gearbox cross-member which wasn't attached at all, apart from a couple of loose bolts dropped through. I jacked the engine up a little with a small plank under the sump, pulled off the gearbox and stowed it in my shed.

I was delighted to see a pristine pressure plate which, when removed, revealed an equally pristine driven plate which wasn't stuck to the flywheel - excellent news. These were also stowed safely away in the dry just as it began to rain, so the covers had to go on again.

I'd just got cleaned up and sat down when my neighbour tapped on the window to announce the crane's return, so it was back outside to lash it to the soil pipe with an old motor bike cover over it as it wouldn't fit past the chassis.

Next fine day................

Regards, Mick

Mick O'Malley 7th February 2017 07:28

French Monaco, Citroen Based
This popped up on the Moss Owners' Facebook page. Beautiful but expensive!

Regards, Mick

Mick O'Malley 7th February 2017 11:36

Engine In
Double boiler suits again. Out at 0900. After lifting the engine just clear of the chassis which came with the body, I had to manoeuvre the new chassis on its two wheels backwards to enable the crane plus engine to fit in front of it. More hernia special!

Once this was achieved it was easy peasy to drop the engine in, remembering to have the exhaust manifold and down pipe loosely between the chassis rail and sump as it can't be inserted later - too big!

As the original chassis will now be stripped before disposal I tranferred the wheels from it to the new one. Much easier to move now, even with no steering column :). All done before noon.

Next job is to swap the swing spring with leaves removed onto the red chassis, which has a standard six bolt spring.

Regards, Mick

oxford1360 7th February 2017 11:52

Achtung! Ich sehe, dass Sie den Motor von einem Chassis zum anderen getauscht haben. Ich hoffe, dass Sie die Chassis Police informiert haben.

retro200 7th February 2017 12:22

i guess thats german for i have just changed my engine and not told the cops !!

Mick O'Malley 7th February 2017 13:54

Rain Stopped Play
After a very late breakfast I dived back out and set to removing the complete swing spring rear suspension. The diff. drive flanges are bigger, the drive shafts are longer and the final drive ratio is lower, so it makes sense to swap the lot.

I disconnected the top shock absorber eyes, the front tie bar mountings, and the two nuts and the long bolt that locate the diff, having first supported it loosely with the crane. It wouldn't quite come out as the inner drive shaft flanges fouled on the handbrake cable guides. I separated the flanges and it was then possible to rotate the whole thing and manoeuvre it clear.

There was just time to cover everything over before the heavens opened so I think that'll have to be it for today.

Regards, Mick

deggsy 8th February 2017 21:32

Mice one Mick I always licked the Monaco very similar to a super two which I once owned, A ford side valve E93a based special unfortunately I cant find a photo of it at the moment!

Mick O'Malley 9th February 2017 07:00

Super 2s and Rain Stopped Play Again

Originally Posted by deggsy
Nice one Mick, I always liked the Monaco, very similar to a Super Two which I once owned, A Ford side valve E93a based special, unfortunately I can't find a photo of it at the moment!

My future brother-in-law had one in the 60s when he was courting my sister, it prompted me to buy a Lotus VI, also 1172 side-valve powered. I don't have a picture of that Super Two to hand, although I know there's a monochrome Kodak Brownie 127 snap taken by my late mother somewhere.

However, I do have these taken at The Specials Day (not a punk re-union) which is held on the second Sunday of August each year at The Cotswold Wildlife Park in Burford, Oxfordshire. The green one turned up at The Kit Car Show a few years ago on Spitfire underpinnings and on 15" MGF 'Minilites' which, coincidentally, I bought yesterday for the Monaco!

I have quite a bit of Les Montgomery (the father of the Super Two) memorabilia which I've collected over the years. His shop, Super Accessories in Catford, was on my doorstep and I bought an Aquaplane aluminium flywheel and valve chest cover from him for the Lotus VI. In a further coincidence, last week, when selecting a gear knob for the Monaco so that the gear stick didn't hole the cover, I chose the ally one sporting the arms of the city of Monza that I also bought there in the 60s for 7/6. Synchronicity!

The Super Two's claim to fame was that it retailed at £99, although the floor was an extra! The body was a 'Hamblin Cadet' from the firm of that name in Dorset.

I took the rear drive and suspension off the 'new' chassis yesterday but the rain started again at a natural break in proceedings so this is where I've got to.

Regards, Mick

Mick O'Malley 9th February 2017 08:14

Moss Midge
The Moss Midge bought by the vendor of my red chassis is on Ebay.


Now sold!

Regards, Mick

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