‘Da Wedge

140216 PB14-25 MK

Save for the late-evening, zero-wind-chill dash with the blue ’80 TR7 about three weeks ago, I hadn’t driven the car much.  I corrected that oversight today, primarily due to the incredibly nice temperature and despite the fact that our beautiful springish day disappeared into the clag.   The Wedge compared to the ’74 TR6?  Several observations:

1) What with the TR6′s tall, 15-inch wheels, steering effort is always low.  The TR7, on the other hand, will obviously contribute to improved upper body strength and probably larger arm and shoulder muscles within a few months.  Naaah, I’m not bemoaning the lack of power steering, just sayin’.

2) Compared to the melodious, classic sound of a Triumph inline six, the TR7′s four is a thrasher and somewhat industrial-sounding.  I’m considering changing the car’s nickname from “Blue Doorstop” to something more appropriate like “Ferguson” (“Fergie?”) or “Minneapolis-Moline.”

3) With the TR6, you sit legs out and arms in, ie, classic British.  With the Wedge, it’s legs in (I’m 6’1″) and arms in, which again reminds me of several Fiats I’ve known and owned.  Not a bad thing necessarily, just something to adjust to.

4) On the plus side, the Wedge has a lot more interior room and a proper dead pedal, both highly appreciated.

5) Finally, once you adjust to the different sound, ergonomics and handling, the TR7 is actually quite FUN.   I think it’s going to be a major hoot as I gain more experience with the vehicle.

Ohmygawsh, am I becoming a Wedge convert?  Perhaps I should schedule a session with Doctors Lamberg, Lowe and Madsen to see if there’s any treatment available for this condition…

The Bear Is Vanquished, Once Again…

We truly lucked out yesterday: the temp made it up to about 36 degrees, the roads were in good condition, most everyone said they enjoyed the route and the “partly cloudy” the weather guessers promised actually showed up late in the day.

I counted 18 vehicles – 3 Spits, 1 GT6, 4 TR6s, 2 TR7s, plus a Sprite, MGA, Mini (although Ron elected to switch to the right seat of someone else’s vehicle), two Hyundais, one BMW Z4 as the lead vehicle and a Chevy Silverado as the chase vehicle/tail-end Charlie. Including those who sent directly to the Moore’s home, 36 or so participated in the party afterwards and soon-to-be-president-emeritus Creig kept the business meeting to about 7.5 minutes, then the partying resumed.

For all who read this, feel free to check out the SLTOA web page for some initial photos from the event. Otherwise, watch for the March issue of “Exhaust Notes” for the full story and a bunch more photos.

Now, to set up our next driving/club event. Paintball anyone?

Four To Polar Bear

Four days to go and yeah, the weather’s been dismal (as indicated earlier, a “real winter” hereabouts), but as of today it could be a lot worse: you could be attempting a Polar Bear Run as a member of, oh, Georgia Triumph Association, Triumph Club of the Carolinas, the Richmond (VA) Triumph Register, Capital Triumph Club, etc. Shoot, even our friends in the Texas TR outposts (Hill Country Triumphs, Austin; Red River Triumphs, DFW; Texas Triumph Register, Houston) have been getting hammered by ice lately.

BUT, be of good cheer: as of 2200L, Wednesday 12 February, the forecast for this Sunday is partly cloudy, low of 33 and high of 44, should make for a good run. A last road recce will probably take place mid-day Saturday to get an idea of the conditions along the route, but figure on reasonably warm weather, no doubt with plenty of snow still on the ground.

Launch ’em!

Adios RPC, Hello Blue Doorstop

Well, earlier this evening yours truly drove the ’74 TR6 one last time, south to owner Creig’s home. It’s been a highly entertaining three years storing the car for him, doing minor maintenance, participating in SLTOA events and autocrossing the red car. But, the TR – Creig’s first-ever Triumph, according to sources – is up for sale sooo. back home it went.

Now in the garage? His ’80 TR7, which he’d been driving in the BSCC events and our club outings. If I remember the story, it was a “rescue” and, like the TR6 before it, needed a temp home, hence its arrival in the garage. And yeah, it was quite a switch going from a 6 to a 7; adjusting to the “new” car is probably going to take some time. Initial comments: much roomier and doggone, this car’s heater worked! (nice to have when you’re swapping vehicles in 15 degree temps). Compared to the TR6, the driving position reminds me of my two Fiats: arms out, legs in, reckon I’ll adjust (then again, maybe I should find another X1/9).

We’ll see where this leads but in the meantime, concerning Sunday’s rescheduled Polar Bear Run, The Weather Channel predicts 44 degrees and partly cloudy with limited chance for precip for Sunday the 16th. That follows four days of 32+ weather sooo, while there’ll probably be snow on the ground, the roads should be clear.

Again, if interested in joining SLTOA on this annual first drive of the season, be at the Shell/Circle K on Hwy 109 south of downtown Eureka at 11 AM. Pot-luck meal and meeting to follow. Come on out and have some fun!

Uff-Da! Polar Bear Postponed!

The word just went out via the SLTOA members’ email group, if any of y’all who read this hadn’t heard, the club’s annual kick-off event, the Polar Bear Run, has been postponed from Sunday 9 Feb to Sunday 6 Feb.

For those out of the area, greater St Louis received between three and eight inches of snow yesterday (Tues) afternoon and this morning. While the main roads are now in pretty good shape, a lot of the neighborhood streets and secondaries are still a mess. With temps expected to remain in the low-to-mid 20s (at best!) into next week, and what with the rather, er, challenging aspect of portions of the Polar Bear route, the club leadership decided it was best to postpone. By next weekend we should have several days of sunny weather and temperatures pushing towards 40, which should make the proceedings a tad more feasible.

More in a couple of evenings…