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Berkeley 058 - To Restore Or To Exocet?


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#1 browno

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Posted 28 April 2016 - 09:51 PM

Well - here goes with a new project, that I wasn't really planning on, especially since I ordered myself a new golf R estate a fortnight ago - so I really need to focus on getting my Vectra VXR advertised soon to make space for that!

Today though I have made a new addition to the fleet - a 1998 mk1 Berkeley edition no. 58/400. I have bought this from a colleague whose mum has owned and cherished it from new.

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AF30E1AC-ED5F-4B76-B26F-CD56A9832ECB_zps

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80BC9E94-4344-40CD-93E7-F272173A136A_zps

Looks like a decent start point - but what to do? Well, I have bought the car as an MOT failure, which needs a brake pipe, and rust to the inner area of the rear sills and also one area to the front. So my first thought was that this would be a perfect basis to use to throw away the bodyshell to build either an Exocet or roadrunner sr2 as a bit of a project.

However... That was before I had seen the overall condition of the car, and driven it around (on trade plates to stay legal) I am wondering if it might be too good to suffer that fate! I think the key will be to get it in the air and see how bad it looks (and how taken I am with the kits when I go to the kit car show at Stoneleigh on Monday!).

I haven't managed to look yet, as I currently have another resurrection in progress on my lift - my mum's 2002 MG TF which has been off the road for almost 5 years (and has only done 20012 miles!) which I am preparing to get MOTd and sold before getting the Mazda on the ramp and checked out.

Having had an initial feel around underneath there are holes on both sides below the lip on the bottom of each rear sill - I had my outer sills done on my old mk1 but am not sure how bad this is likely to be below the surface.

I will keep you posted as I start to dig, but thought I would start a thread to see what the folks of Nutz think I should do!
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Now: Silver 2006 Mk3 2.0 Option Pack with Meister R Coilovers, RX8 ARBs, Roddison's setup, Racing Beat Manifold, 180bhp Autotronix remap and Federal RS-R's.

         1998 Berkeley 058/400 - sparkle green and standard, for now.

 

Previously: 2000 Porsche Boxster S, 1991 MX5 Mk1 1.6


#2 alhendo1

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Posted 28 April 2016 - 09:57 PM

Save it! Save it! I like the Berkleys....there's a few on here👍
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#3 JackyBoy1988

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 12:18 AM

I am going to say save it! But from the sounds of it it might be too far gone :(
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#4 pk_cooler

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 12:30 AM

Save It! the colour is amazing. Tear up something else.


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#5 indykid

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 05:54 AM

The worst colour imho, but there are far tattier cars if you only wanted mechanicals

Being a Berkley is nothing special, but being roughly solid is worth capitalising on.
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#6 browno

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 02:16 PM

Sounds like the consensus so far is to save it - and I have to say, that was my first thought on driving it!

 

I think that I will have to wait to get it in the air and have a good poke around to see how much needs chopping about. I think that this will be a bit of an all or nothing project - I think that it will definitely be either getting fixed properly, or ripped apart and changed into something a bit different!


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Now: Silver 2006 Mk3 2.0 Option Pack with Meister R Coilovers, RX8 ARBs, Roddison's setup, Racing Beat Manifold, 180bhp Autotronix remap and Federal RS-R's.

         1998 Berkeley 058/400 - sparkle green and standard, for now.

 

Previously: 2000 Porsche Boxster S, 1991 MX5 Mk1 1.6


#7 JackyBoy1988

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 09:40 PM

The worst colour imho, but there are far tattier cars if you only wanted mechanicals

Being a Berkley is nothing special, but being roughly solid is worth capitalising on.


Its one of the best colours imho.
Sparkling green. It takes a while to get used to.
If your not in touch with your feminine side then you will never like it. This makes you a weak man.

Berkeleys are special as they are the last of mark ones off the UK production line..
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#8 indykid

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 09:41 PM

The worst colour imho, but there are far tattier cars if you only wanted mechanicals

Being a Berkley is nothing special, but being roughly solid is worth capitalising on.

Its one of the best colours imho.
Sparkling green. It takes a while to get used to.
If your not in touch with your feminine side then you will never like it. This makes you a weak man.

Berkeleys are special as they are the last of mark ones off the UK production line..
Have you been on the fosters again?
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#9 JackyBoy1988

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 09:52 PM

Yes sir, sorry sir.

Besides the point though. Sparkling green is a warm feminine peaceful colour.

I think most men would look right past buying one because of the colour which is a shame.

When i am driving it with the roof down in my red Mazda sun glasses i feel ace, light and bubbly in my sparkling green car!
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#10 browno

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Posted 30 April 2016 - 09:57 PM

Well, I have given it a quick wash tonight with some help from no.2 son, the drive having a bit of a Mazda theme...

D7111D4D-13DD-41C2-B653-A71C2C1CE38B_zps

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Then I pulled it into the garage for a good nose underneath...

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Drivers side sill

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And passenger side

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Passenger arch looking a little crusty

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And both front wing bottoms are a bit thin

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Oh, and a small hole spotted here too (front rail, by the testers chalk line)

D2F8597D-328A-48B4-A961-A75017C3DA1F_zps

But other than that little lot, it seems otherwise solid... So what's the verdict? Still a saver? if it is, I think I need to get cracking and learn to weld - I think I would like to try and do it myself (or at least under the guidance of someone who knows what they are doing!)

Still planning on heading to Stoneleigh on Monday for a nose round, but feeling less inclined to strip this at the minute!

Oh, and the green is growing on me!
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Now: Silver 2006 Mk3 2.0 Option Pack with Meister R Coilovers, RX8 ARBs, Roddison's setup, Racing Beat Manifold, 180bhp Autotronix remap and Federal RS-R's.

         1998 Berkeley 058/400 - sparkle green and standard, for now.

 

Previously: 2000 Porsche Boxster S, 1991 MX5 Mk1 1.6


#11 JackyBoy1988

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Posted 30 April 2016 - 11:28 PM

Find [email protected] on here.

From what i see it already 500 pounds plus of work :/


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#12 browno

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 08:17 AM

£500 would be no bother - I figure to properly build an Exocet to a high standard will be £5kish, so would be prepared to put £1000-1500 into this if I can turn it into a really good solid car. Having seen some of Mark's repairs, he would be high on the list if I am getting it done for me.

I think I might whip the front end off and explore a little deeper (it would all be coming apart either way!
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Now: Silver 2006 Mk3 2.0 Option Pack with Meister R Coilovers, RX8 ARBs, Roddison's setup, Racing Beat Manifold, 180bhp Autotronix remap and Federal RS-R's.

         1998 Berkeley 058/400 - sparkle green and standard, for now.

 

Previously: 2000 Porsche Boxster S, 1991 MX5 Mk1 1.6


#13 browno

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 10:14 PM

I think I am beginning to come around to a restoration! While I think an Exocet or Seven-alike would be awesome fun, I have my mk3 Mazda for the track (with Meisters suspension, sticky tyres etc), and that is plenty for my amateurish driving abilities, but still retains the ability to take the kids to school.
With all that in mind, I am coming around to the idea of turning this into a very tidy and pampered car to go out for a nice drive on a sunny day or head to a show in... Given that the basis looks good, I think that this is where I will head, assuming I don't discover anything catastrophic in the process!

I have been cracking on with delving a bit deeper tonight, and thought I would start with the front wings (as they are nice and easy to whip off!

First of all was to get the mudflaps off - which I think might have been a contributor to the problem, giving all the crud a nice place to hide behind...
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Then out with the arch liner to reveal lots of crud lying in the convenient trap at the bottom of the wing

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And off with the wing - can you tell where the rubbish has been sitting?

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But thankfully everything appears pretty solid underneath - which is a relief!

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And with a repeat on the other side, I have a car looking like this...

E28C53AD-EE39-41AE-BD4C-30F3FDEC011A_zps

Looking at it, I think the wings could be saveable with a bit of TLC along the bottoms - although if the sills at the back end will need paint, I wonder if it would be best to do it properly and stick a pair of new ones on... A decision that can wait until I have opened up the rear end and seen how much work is needed there!

So, assuming I don't have a change of plan after a day of looking at kit cars tomorrow, then the restoration starts here...
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Now: Silver 2006 Mk3 2.0 Option Pack with Meister R Coilovers, RX8 ARBs, Roddison's setup, Racing Beat Manifold, 180bhp Autotronix remap and Federal RS-R's.

         1998 Berkeley 058/400 - sparkle green and standard, for now.

 

Previously: 2000 Porsche Boxster S, 1991 MX5 Mk1 1.6


#14 JackyBoy1988

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Posted 02 May 2016 - 07:59 AM

I am extremely looking forward to seeing the restoration if it goes ahead!
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#15 chrispb

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Posted 02 May 2016 - 09:54 AM

my harvard had a bit worse than that, but I saved it with a 60 quid mot patch. Got 4 years out of it so far...Scruffy daily transport. Think the run out models had crap steel.


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#16 klw7me

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Posted 03 May 2016 - 12:14 AM

Seems like something great to try your hand at welding on and wouldn't take too much to make it what you want it, but can do more of you want to
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#17 browno

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Posted 03 May 2016 - 08:30 PM

So, I had a day out at the kit car show on a slightly grey and wet bank holiday which has made me realise how much compromise there is with a more extreme car with no weather gear to speak of - whereas I would not think twice about putting the roof of my Mazda up and leaving it in the rain, there were a lot of tarpaulins and improvised covers in action when the rain came! There were lots of lovely machines there (and some good bits and pieces on the trade stalls!) but it did reinforce how much I take for granted the everyday useability of the Mazda.

So, back in the garage for a little while tonight to have a quick look at what lies beneath with the aid of the flap wheel.

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So, on the offside front sill, all looks good and we have clean, shiny, solid metal which is good - so this can all be cleaned back, re-protected and then given a good coat of dinitrol.

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The rear has had a patch put on, so I will chop this out to get back into the inside, as there are holes on the inner edge, so I assume the inner panel will need some work.

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So this all looks like it will be as expected, so onto the other side, where things look a bit different!

At the front, we didn't have as much of a solid feel to the metal, and sure enough we have a hole when trying to clean back the surface. Thankfully, the metal around looks ok, so hopefully this can be cut cleanly and a patch welded in.

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Then to the back, (which has rust starting to appear around the wheelarch) where we also have a patch - and a covering of filler - which I think will take some more investigation, and chopping back!

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So, nothing that is too surprising so far (I was aware that the sills had been patched - my colleague, who is a picky engineer, had put some patches on, but I didn't know quite how much had been done).

I think the plan of action from here is to have a good think about what to do next - I am torn between buying a welder and trying to learn to sort it, or saving that cost (I figure with a reasonable MIG, gas bottle and extras that I will be in the £3-500 range (but will have gained a skill), but that would go a long way to getting a pro to sort out welding it up - which will undoubtedly be a much better finish than I would achieve as a first-timer.

Any thoughts or guidance from folks on here that have had a go at similar repairs or learning to weld would be very much appreciated! I'll keep the updates flowing as a continue to dig a bit deeper!
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Now: Silver 2006 Mk3 2.0 Option Pack with Meister R Coilovers, RX8 ARBs, Roddison's setup, Racing Beat Manifold, 180bhp Autotronix remap and Federal RS-R's.

         1998 Berkeley 058/400 - sparkle green and standard, for now.

 

Previously: 2000 Porsche Boxster S, 1991 MX5 Mk1 1.6


#18 indykid

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Posted 03 May 2016 - 09:20 PM

If you fancy a run up to Keighley, there's a Clarke 151TE on locostbuilders for £150
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#19 dave65

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Posted 03 May 2016 - 10:17 PM

If you fancy a run up to Keighley, there's a Clarke 151TE on locostbuilders for £150

i've got a clarke 151te great little mig well up to the job , my advise would be to buy a mig and do the work yourself it's not hard to learn to weld with a half decent mig.

mine looks similar to yours i have holes in the front sills and the rear have been patched and have filler so i'm going to cut it all out and start again.


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#20 Binney

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Posted 04 May 2016 - 07:17 AM

I say go for it and get stuck in to the welding!

 

I've recently started to learn to weld myself and have really enjoyed learning a new skill.  After practising on some scrap metal I've got to the stage where I felt ready to try some proper welding on my 5 (info in my build thread).

 

Learning to weld on a good car (not a problem for me) is a bit of tricky one though.  Each weld I do is generally better than the last so I get the feeling that once the welding is complete I'll stand back and think to myself something like 'the next one I'll do will be great!'

 

Go for it though, after all what have you got to loose?  Even if it goes horribly wrong you'll still have all the bits to Exocet.


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