The TC featured on the front cover belongs to Gabriel Öhman in Sweden. Here is a photo of Gabriel which was taken just after he bought the car and was trying it out on a run to Finland.
Gabriel has penned the following, which I have left largely unedited. He says that his “Swinglish” is not very good but I have to disagree!
“Everything started with TC3178. Newly married it was our first car and I remember that I fell for the beautiful lines of the wings. Wife was not too keen as at that time the in thing was high Farah Diba coiffures. So after a few years the TC was sold and I bought a new MGB GT. I got a few needed points from wife there.
If you ever owned a TC and sold it you will always miss it, I did anyhow for 35 years or so.
When suddenly, 3179 – the nearest thing to 3178 – came up for sale in 2006, I bought it. Just like that, spontaneous, no thinking at all!
She was clapped out and the look of the car and still is what you call “shabby shick”. The last owner had called the car “the bomb” as there was not much of an exhaust system. Changed that and the very tired Shorrock for a new one “old stock” laying around.
As I have a rolling renovation of the car things do not go very quick. In wintertime I try to rebuild a J2 so TC 3179 will have to make do with the few spare hours in the summer between outings.
The front axle turned around 180 degrees, new front springs and bushes. King pins, changed the shockers all around from Hartfords to the original things; I am not sure which is best but she looks right. I have a feeling she was quicker at roundabouts on the Hartfords. New sealed wheel bearings all around. The Bishop was OK which is unusual.
Brake system changed, wheel cylinders new; Master cylinder changed. Swapped 2 brake drums. Got the hand brake system working, had not been working for twenty years when I looked in old MoT papers. New Blockleys, what a revelation!
New clutch, fixed the gearbox 2nd and 3rd jumped out. Bought another gearbox; I’ve had it renovated by a pro but the J2 has not allowed any time to change it yet.
Had tank sealant in the tank, did put in an extra fuel line and a second SU as they say in the “Shorrock papers” is a good idea. Changed the crown wheel to suit the Shorrock better. Changed the half shafts on both sides and fitted new sealed bearings, of course. Sealed the splines at the hubs inside with Plastic padding.
New rear lights, new wing lamps T-Type style, one of the headlamps changed, new old Altette, new tonneau, new black hood with single window, new door locks.
Well this seems to be a tiresome list and in a way it is; I should not have been so sentimental. Throw her away! Wife says. But I have great fun with the car and it keeps me on my toes and she still looks as I have not done a thing to her and I have done a lot. Remarkable, Shabby shick!”
Editor’s Note: Well, I said previously that I disagreed about the “Swinglish” (Gabriel refers to his English, written by a Swede, as “Swinglish”) and I have to disagree about the condition of TC3179; it looks pretty good to me! His car is used a lot and does not sit in the garage gathering dust. He has also carried out a lot of sensible improvements to his TC.
Like me, Gabriel is rebuilding a J2 but he is a lot further on than me. I know this because we have been ‘pen friends’ (well, I suppose the modern term is ‘e-mail friends’) for years and new J2 parts have been sent to and from Sweden.
Finally, a note about TC3178 (pictured left when it was in Gabriel’s ownership) and TC3179. Both of these cars were part of a batch of eight (TC3174 to TC3181 inclusive) which the Factory built on 10th July, 1947. Both TC3178 and TC3179 were exported to Sweden and the balance of probability is that the whole batch was exported to Sweden.