The "Fox & Nicholl" Talbot as a sports car

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In this interesting contribution L. S. Daniels very convincingly states the case for the old “90” and “105” Talbots, as modified by Fox & Nicholl. Before we asked him to write of “Talbots he has owned,” we had experience of his present car, and were very favourably impressed, not only with its general performance, but with the owner’s skilful handling of it. Mr. Daniels was for a time with the M.G. Car Co., Ltd., and he writes with a sound knowledge of what a good high-performance car is called upon to do and the pitfalls that await those who seek to manufacture such cars. – Ed.

I do not wish readers to infer from the title of this article that Talbots are the only cars I have owned, or even that I have owned a great number of Talbots. In actual fact, I have owned or been associated with a number of different makes; sometimes alone, sometimes in partnership, but nearly always in circumstances of acute financial stress.

As regards cars other than Talbots, I feel that the cars, and my experiences with them, so closely resemble the subjects of previous “Cars I Have Owned” articles, that there is no point in my inflicting the whole of my motoring biography on readers of Motor Sport

In point of fact, I have owned four Talbots and have run two of them. The first was a 14/45 Model AF, Reg. No. YX 64, fabric saloon, vintage 1927. I took this car in exchange for a Morris Cowley 1928 2-seater, which simply would not see fit to retain white-metal in its big-ends. The Talbot had been lurking in a garage in Cricklewood, where a friend of mine was a car salesman, and said friend warned me not to touch it with a barge-pole. I was to touch that Talbot with many things shorter and more searching than barge-poles before I parted with it.

My salesman friend didn’t know how desperately I wanted to get rid of the Cowley, otherwise he might have redoubled his efforts at dissuasion; but the result of the interview was that I became the owner of the Talbot as a level swap.

After certain preliminaries had been adjusted, there was a general move in the direction of the Talbot with a view to starting it up and sending yet another satisfied customer on his way. I will not go into details, except to explain that the starter-motor did not feature for long in these efforts, owing to a certain ennui on the part of the battery, and that efforts with the starting handle were almost entirely wasted until someone discovered that you pushed the choke control for rich mixture. The operations, I should add, were conducted in semi-darkness in the depths of the garage.

Eventually, of course, the garage mechanics went and sulked in a group on the far side of the premises, leaving future owner and a stranger who had just drifted in to start up on their own. We pinched some wire, and jury-rigged the ignition circuit. Actually, we could have pinched the whole garage, as no one dared look in our direction for fear of being asked to help.

I should think the sulking mechanics nearly choked with fury when, with jury-rigging completed, the engine started at the first pull up by the stranger. Thanking the stranger very much, I then removed the jury-rigging, and the engine restarted on the handle, the existing wiring apparently feeling that it had had its joke and had better show that it had a serious side.

Trying not to giggle, I drove out of the garage, and, except for a wire underneath catching fire and having to be put out by a policeman with a Pyrene, reached home at Watford safely.

I was working at M.G.’s at the time, and, while in “digs” at Abingdon, was travelling daily to Cowley to work on the design of the 2-litre. The Talbot was parked at night in the M.G. staff car park. and to get it started in the morning took the combined skill and pushing power of the racing department. I remember how red-headed Jock Routledge could crank as no man I ever saw, but even he could never start it on the handle from cold. It had to have its push.

During that first week of ownership I really learned the art of asking the onlookers for a push, as, although the M.G. mechanics were always willing, the Cowley bunch regarded me and my Talbot car as just an importunate stranger and took a bit of coaxing.

The trouble, of course, was a dud battery, aided and abetted by old plugs, worn valve guides, and the Smith’s carburetter. For the following week-end I borrowed the battery from E. R. Hall’s car, which was in the works for attention, and that overcame all troubles as regards starting.

That, week-end I rashly undertook a run to Felixstowe, although the engine never had shown more than a token of oil pressure and I really wanted a day on the car to tighten up here and there.

At a sharp little hump bridge the entire silencing system came off, and as it was just getting dark, we recovered it and tied it to the side of the car for attention on the morrow. We proceeded, with a noise like thunder, to Coggeshall, where we stopped, more or less in the middle of the road, to ask the way. The engine took the opportunity of cutting out, and when we lifted the bonnet to see why, a policeman strongly recommended our pushing it out of the way into a garage for examination.

For the use of the shop lighting, while we changed the distributor rotor (broken centre contact spring), we were charged half-a-crown and warned in loud voices that our completely open exhaust would probably set us on fire. On resuming our journey, we were soon stopped by the policeman, who had overheard the chat re missing silencer. I suppose the garage people felt they owed the officer something for putting a bit of business their way. I was fined.

The Autovac gave a bit of trouble, I forget why, but this hardly mattered beside the mental anguish of thundering through sleeping towns and villages with every man’s hand against us because of the open exhaust. We felt like lepers, and I shall never forget the exquisite relief of sighting the Felix Hotel car park, switching off, and coasting to a standstill in beautiful silence. Nor shall I forget the porter at the Felix who not only fixed me a room at 2 a.m., but actually produced a bottled Bass.

The run home the next day was almost as noisy, as it was only possible to replace the pipe from the manifold, leaving silencer and tail pipe stowed in the car’s interior. A rolled-up ball of copper wire stuffed in the end of the pipe did practically nothing.

On arrival home, safe in that haven of boxes of nuts, bolts, and spare parts, the silencer was soon on again, and the following Monday saw the car back on the Abingdon-Cowley run, with E. R. Hall’s battery back in its proper place. I had bought a battery over the weekend, and had no further starter trouble.

Coming home to Watford one Saturday, I promised my passenger a demonstration of the climb up the hill at High Wycombe in third gear; so changing down, I opened up for the turn up the hill, and was badly let down by one contact-breaker refusing to work, causing a sad falling-off in power, and necessitating first gear to struggle over the summit.

On a subsequent trip home with the same passenger, the fabric timing gear stripped, and the journey was completed by coach. I remember ordering this passenger, rather peevishly, to clear off and organise tea for two, consisting of boiled eggs and plenty of bread and butter, while I superintended towing in. He returned amazingly quickly, and guided me to a place where tea, exactly to specification, awaited and furthermore, on our asking to wash our hands, we were shown into a magnificent bedroom containing a real four-poster bed in its natural surroundings.

Bill Renwick, ex-Aston-Martins, then at M.G.’s, very kindly offered to tow me in behind his ancient A.C. on the following Monday. It was raining a fair bit, but William insisted on towing me with his hood down, saying it was more matey that way.

The arrival back at Abingdon more or less coincided with the completion of the design work on the 2-litre M.G., so the little contingent of four of us, remnant of the Abingdon design staff, were thanked politely, and fired from the Cowley works, following the closing down of M.G.’s racing department. This enforced leisure was a godsend to me, as I now set about stripping the Talbot in a barn in order to replace the timing gear with one obtained c.o.d. from Reading for £1.

In the more technical parts of this article I may be just the least bit libelous to George Roesch, who, I believe, was the designer of many Talbots. I feel, however, that this famous designer can hardly have allowed for ease of repair and maintenance by the owner-driver, or he would never have buried his timing gears in such a way as to necessitate removal of the engine to effect a replacement. Many years later I heard from someone at Fox & Nicholls that it is just possible to replace fabric timing gears by removing the sump only. I believe a little bit of filing or chipping has to be done to the block casting to enable the gear to be removed and the new one inserted; but how much easier it would have been to provide a removable cover at the front of the block.

The timing gear replacement at Abingdon gave me an opportunity of getting to know the car’s innards, and finding various Talbot features, such as the two-part pistons with aluminium crown and cast-iron skirt, solid copper-head gasket, rather nice-looking crankshaft, easily worked-on valve gear with knitting-needle push-rods, excellent radiator mounting, and solid engine mounting in the frame.

Alas, I also got to know the metric size big-end bolts, the inlet and exhaust manifolds which required queer spanners to remove, the dynamotor which can only be removed after the radiator, the horrible tin plates between the frame and the cylinder block which make sump removal a thing to be dreaded, and finally, on an engine which prefers to run without oil pressure when getting oId, the big-ends with white-metal direct in the rods. I mention these criticisms of design because they all refer to defects which could be so easily remedied if the designer had kept repair and maintenance in mind. None of the drawbacks actually affect the performance of the engine – even the question of direct metalling as compared with shells – but they do mean such a lot to anyone who has to keep an old Talbot on the road and do all his own repair work.

To replace the fabric timing gear I removed every bit of the engine, leaving only the crankshaft and flywheel sticking out of the front of the gearbox. The job took a week of single-handed work, and in the process a piece of string got into the sump. This artful little piece of string very soon found its way to the oil pump intake, and on the way home to Watford four big-ends went, just like that.

Another happy week was spent, partly writing to firms for employment, but mostly replacing big-ends. I got the big-ends re-metalled for about five shillings the lot by a local man, and machined them on my own treadle lathe. New piston rings were also fitted, cutting down the oil consumption a little. The clutch had always had a habit of hanging, so the back axle, torque tube, and gearbox were slid back together – another funny little job single-handed – and a great quantity of thick, black paste, made of pulverized clutch lining and oil, was removed from various parts of the clutch. This cured the hanging quite nicely.

The Talbot was now going quite well for an eight-year-old, although it still had practically no oil pressure and fuel consumption was not too good. The speedometer drive from the gearbox was so worn as to be more of a friction drive than a gear drive, so I never knew the speed of this car. I should say, however, that it had a maximum of 60 m.p.h. and a cruising speed of 45-50 m.p.h.

The liaison between engine and back wheels ceased one morning, only a few yards from the firm in Canonbury where I got a job, so I was pushed into the yard, and, the following Saturday afternoon, set to work to investigate. The symptoms seemed to me to indicate a broken half-shaft; so both shafts were removed in turn, neither being found defective. The trouble being located as the differential bevel spindle being in three pieces, a replacement was obtained at a nearby breaker’s at Dalston, and the car was on its way home by tea-time.

Incidentally, this car had a cruciform brace for its frame, the centre of which provided an excellent place whereby the rear of the car could be lifted high into the air by means of one jack. The jacking-point was, of course, behind the c. of g. of the car, and was very useful for all jobs necessitating hoisting the back wheels off the ground.

At some time during my ownership of the car I was running it with a battery which was too big for the cradle under the floorboards. The battery just sat at the front passenger’s feet, extra long wires being provided to reach it. One dark night, cornering fairly fast to the left, the battery slid across the floorboards and a lead was wrenched off. Up went the headlights to a wonderful brilliance, so wonderful in fact that the bulbs burned out. Fortunately the brakes were such that, when stamped upon, they pulled the car up dead straight, so all was well.

I felt that I had won my battles with my first Talbot, so I sold it before it launched its next major offensive. It had been a nice, comfortable car, with excellent steering and brakes, very roomy – I’ve had eight people packed inside – and the large trunk at the back was extremely useful.

The impression gained from ownership of this car was that a new Talbot must be a delightful car to own, but that these cars eventually reached an age when everything wore out at once, and that the design did not adequately provide for easy performance of major operations.

Between 1936 and 1940 I owned cars of other makes, and the summer of 1940 found me making frequent journeys along the London-Portsmouth Road in an Austin Seven cabriolet. Outside a garage near Petersfield I often saw a black Talbot “90” open 4-seater, with a sort of pointed tail. This set me thinking of Talbots once again, so one day I stopped and asked the proprietor, Ken Chadwick, if the car was for sale. It wasn’t, but there was another Talbot which was. This proved to be car number PL 4, one of the original Fox & Nicholl racing cars. Chadwick took me for a trial run, and the car seemed not too had mechanically.

Some days later I stopped off at the garage and traded my Austin for the Talbot and a fiver. I was on my way to town with a colleague, so my first drive was to be a fairly lengthy one. The car wouldn’t start on the starter, but there was a nice slope outside the garage, and she soon started with a push. The exhaust note, I remember, sounded delightful. On the fairly straight piece of road before the railway bridge outside Liphook we touched 80, and the main snag seemed to be a lack of oil pressure. Restarts when warm could be effected with a pull up on the handle, and long stops were made on a good down slope to facilitate push starts by the colleague. The journey to town was fairly uneventful, and as there was a mask fitted to our headlamp, we stopped at a few taverns on the way back.

The hood fabric was just a tattered wreck, and when it rained I was very glad to accept the offer of my passenger to drive. It was then pitch dark, and the headlamp mask was not giving too much light. The mask no doubt felt conscious of its deficiencies for, coming down the long hill at Horndean, it and the front of the lamp fell off, floodlighting the whole of Hampshire during the few seconds required to find the switch and turn it off. As the missing parts could not be found until the following morning, the drive on to Warsash had to be done with sidelights only. Fortunately, it was possible to see over the top of the screen, so things were not too bad.

I used the car daily for travelling between Warsash and Portsmouth, the chief difficulty being that the battery was never equal to the job of starting from cold, and my household had to push the car the length of a slightly uphill drive before reaching the main road for a pushstart. The starting handle, as in the old “14/45,” had dog teeth made of somebody’s butter ration, and, even when filed up and hardened, lasted for only a few good swings. One could, therefore, never really apply one’s fun strength to the job of swinging for fear of the dogs slipping and causing grievous bodily harm.

Apart from starting difficulties the car ran very well, and although there was no one in Portsmouth who could cover the hood, I did manage to fit a tonneau cover which could cover all four seats when the car was parked. Performance was fairly good. about 80-85 m.p.h. being obtainable on the level, and just over 90 downhill. Brakes and steering were really excellent, and the driving position was thoroughly comfortable for a tall driver. The crash type gearbox was none too good. being on the slow side, and third gear was just a shade low for a car of this type. Second gear was an excellently chosen ratio, and first was rather too low to be useful in conjunction with second for speedy get-away.

I began to be really interested in the car, and as the log book contained only the name of the owner immediately preceding me, I wrote to Fox & Nicholl asking for any information they might have concerning the car. I received a very courteous reply, giving details of the car’s racing history when in their charge, and enclosing a photograph showing the car starting with its two team mates in the UIster T.T. of 1930. The car had apparently run in the Double Twelve, Le Mans, Ulster T.T., Dublin G.P. and 500 Miles Race that year. I subsequently called in at Fox & Nicholl’s place on the Kingston By-Pass, and had a most interesting chat, with their Mr. Manuelle, who showed me numerous photographs of the 90s and 105s during their early racing career. It was extremely difficult to identify my own car positively, owing to the fact that the cars were not raced with registration numbers, and had not in fact been taxed for the road until after their first season’s racing. There were, however, a few photographs of the cars with registration numbers, and PL 4 was shown in one of these with the late Tim Rose-Richards at the wheel. The cars had originally been painted cream, in which colour many people will remember them at Brooklands and elsewhere. The car, when I bought it, was painted British racing green, and showed traces of the original cream underneath, as well as a coat of blue between the cream and the green.

I did many runs in the car in the condition in which I bought it, putting up fairly good average speeds at a consumption of over 20 m.p.g. One run of 700 miles was completed without a fill up. starting with the 35-gallon tank full to the brim and finishing with some still left in the bottom. One of these cars, I believe, did the 500 Miles Race nonstop at an average of 104 m.p.h.

The engine had been raced with high-compression pistons, but the cars as used on the road had a standard compression ratio, with flat-topped aluminium pistons. The rear-axle ratio was 4.6 to 1, and tyre size was 6.00″ by 19″. This gave a speedometer reading of just twice the rev.-counter reading, e.g., 60 m.p.h. at. 3,000 r.p.m., which is a very handy arrangement, all the more so as the rev.-counter was large and visible to the driver, whereas the speedometer was small and not too easily examined in a bad light or when concentrating.

I never really had complete confidence in the starter Motor, as its performance was not strictly a function of battery strength or oil viscosity. There was just something about having to swing an engine by means of a direct-drive dynamotor with only 12 volts which turned batteries all boIshie. As mentioned before, the starting-handle was purely ornamental. A Ki-gass is the only thing for Talbots with anything but downdraught carburetters, and as I couldn’t find one of these devices, I drilled and tapped a 2 B.A. hole in a handy boss in the manifold, at port level, and fitted a set screw. By removing this screw on cold and frosty mornings, and squirting in a drop of petrol, a start could be obtained, if not at first push of the starter button, at least at first push by the household. Of course you all know that to keep a stone-cold Talbot engine alive a vigorous pumping at the accelerator is necessary, with choke fully closed. The accelerator pumps in Zenith carburetters certainly earn their keep, when fitted.

Apart from starting difficulties, the car was rather delightful, the only mechanical trouble being a tendency for the water-pump gland to leak. The performance, however, began to tell on the old engine, and a combination of high speed and shortage of coolant one day produced a crop of run big-ends and broken pistons.

An 18-h.p. Talbot saloon was then bought from a breaker for a fiver, and the engine from this was transferred to PL 4. The cylinder head, with its slightly larger valve springs and carburetter, was removed from the wrecked engine and fitted to the replacement one, also the camshaft, which had a rev.-counter driving gear at its rear end. The larger sump from the old engine was also retained.

I had had enough water-pump gland trouble on the old engine, so I made this component a hundred per cent. reliable by removing the rotor and using the blanked-off casing as a duct only. Goodness only knows why an engine with the header tank as high above the cylinder head as the Talbot was ever supposed to need a pump. I never had the slightest cooling trouble with the thermo-syphon system, nor will anyone else who modifies the engine in this way. One can only assume that the designer had in mind a lowered type of radiator for future models when changing over from the original “14/45” pumpless layout.

The change of engines took a fortnight and the resultant performance was identical with the original. Unfortunately, oval crank-pins were standard on both engines, so the oil pressure remained, as before, at a mere flutter of the needle when warm. Castor oil put the pressure up a bit, but the starter resented the extra work, even in summer. The smell of castor, however, caused many a nostalgic twitch.

The back-axle went solid about this time, fortunately only about half-a-mile from home, and the bevel gear and pinion from the saloon had to be substituted the following week-end. The new ratio was 4.9 to 1, instead of the original 4.6 to 1, so it was therefore not surprising that a rod went through both sides of the crankcase when descending Horndean hill at about 85 m.p.h.

The engine was now a wreck, and the sound parts of my two engines were not sufficient to make up a serviceable power unit. It was decided that three things must be done if trouble was to be avoided in the future. First, a larger or newer engine must be installed if prolonged performance was to be obtained; secondly, a back-axle ratio no lower than 4.6 to 1 must be fitted; and, thirdly, 24-volt starting simply must be used. All these improvements were embodied in a 21-h.p. Talbot saloon which was obtained from a dealer, and the work of changing over was commenced.

I think I may say that I knew my Talbot by now, and I had no great difficulty in removing the engine, gearbox, rear axle and steering from both cars. It was immediately found necessary to retain the self-change gearbox with the 21-h.p. engine, as this engine with the crash box would have been the wrong overall length for picking up the transmission. The wheelbase of the Fox & Nicholl car is very short, owing to a Talbot “65” frame being used, so the torque tube of this car had to be fitted to the rear-axle casing of the saloon. Everything, however, went together nicely and all controls were fitted up without difficulty. The steering column from the saloon was transferred complete, as it had the self-change lever fitted and also a nice set of controls and switches.

I stripped the engine for examination, and found everything in absolutely first-class order. This state of affairs was later reflected in a really good, steady oil pressure, the first I had ever had with a Talbot engine.

The handbrake lever, on the side of the new gearbox, fitted nicely inside the bodywork, and replaced what had been a rather unsightly outside lever. All three pedals, which are mounted on the gearbox, came nicely into place. An extra battery carrier, running across the car at right angles to the existing battery, was fitted, and the large solenoid change-over switch from the saloon was wired up. I obtained an excellent wiring diagram from Clement Talbot Ltd., to enable this job to be done.

The tie-bar from the saloon was fitted in place of the rather flimsy one which had previously supported the headlamps, and a pair of Marchal lamps were substituted for the original Lucas lamps. I had never been able to get a good light from the original lamps, partly because the reflectors were a bit tarnished. In addition, the weight of the masks had the effect of making the front of the lamps fall off, and I ran over several masks before I decided to change the lamps. The new lamps give a really fine light, and are controlled independently from the centre of the steering-column.

I now had a car worth talking about. On its first test run, after sundry adjustments, it clocked 102 m.p.h., and the original braking and roadholding were, of course, as before. The self-change gearbox, I don’t care what you say, is an excellent device for a sports car, and I have never regretted fitting it. The engine is quite happy up to 4,500 r.p.m., and even 5,000 r.p.m., at which speed the car does 80 m.p.h. in third gear, does not seem too high for short bursts.

Starting troubles are now a thing of the past, although I admit I keep a pair of spare batteries which I make do a turn in order to avoid straining the others. The car has to be kept out of doors all the year round, but will always start first push of the button on the coldest morning. A Zenith downdraught carburetter is fitted, and although I always think that the design of a carburetter should be something more ingenious than a thing like a bucket with sundry holes in it, I feel that if you must have this type of instrument it should be a downdraught. I should like to try a suitable S.U. on this car some time. With the Zenith, I get 20 m.p.g. at quite a good cruising speed, say, 60-70 m.p.h.; and now that cruising speeds are a good deal more modest, I can get more than that with small jets. Even with these jets, a shade over 90 m.p.h. is still obtainable.

The only mechanical trouble I have experienced in 15,000 miles has been the shearing of the bronze skew gear for the speedometer drive. This gear is mounted on the differential bevel carrier, the idea being to provide an automatic change of speedometer-ratio when the final drive ratio is altered. This praiseworthy notion, like some others, is fine until a breakdown occurs, when the rear axle has to be dismantled to effect a replacement.

I have fitted a new hood cover to the existing frame and now have a serviceable hood which is easy to raise and lower, and can be stowed invisibly under the tonneau cover. The car is a four-seater, with plenty of room in the rear seats, and the spare wheel is enclosed in the tail, above the petrol tank. Altogether, a very clever body, which has stood up well to a lot of hard work. Over the successive coats of cream, blue and green paint, the car has now been sprayed a matt camouflage khaki, which looks quite smart and prevents the car appearing too startling in wartime.

If you remember, these cars were always remarkably quiet when racing, and this feature is still retained. I can’t quite recall the exhaust system used in those early days – I must ask Fox & Nicholl – but the present large silencer and plain tailpipe give a very pleasant, subdued note, while still retaining a Brooklands intonation when blipped.

I don’t know whether it is possible to draw any conclusions from my experiences with Talbots; undoubtedly they have a strong personality, and their performance, including speed, roadholding and braking, is pretty genuine. I suppose that, for a car which can certainly travel in sports or racing form, fewer sports versions are made of Talbots than of most other makes. The majority of Talbots are fairly stately saloons, and, although moderately speedy, they are not automatically classified with such cars as Bentleys or Bugattis, which more often than not appear in sports form.

I have had very little to do with Bentleys, but my impression of these cars is that, unless you are a born sentimentalist, they are a lot of expense for a not too startling performance. When I say Bentleys, I Mean the 3-litre and 4 1/2-litre thunderbuckets.

Considering the low cost and almost negligible quantity of non-standard parts involved in producing the Fox & Nicholl teams of racing Talbots, I feel that the racing career of these cars compares very well with anything Bentleys did under similar conditions. Furthermore, the Talbots performed well in their first racing season, and their chief characteristics – extreme reliability, handleability and quietness – contributed to the development of faster and safer touring cars.

I often notice requests in Motor Sport for complete 3-litre Bentleys or parts thereof. I suppose I may assume that these are from people who want to go fast in something that smacks of Le Mans and Ulster. Now, not one in twenty Bentleys are actual team cars; therefore, intending owners are presumably quite content with a replica instead of a museum piece. And, talking of replicas and museum pieces, I don’t think many private owners of “Red Labels” have ever obtained the performance of the works cars.

What I’m suggesting is that a jolly good time can be had in a replica “Fox & Nicholl” Talbot for a better performance and less cost than in a “replica” Bentley. There can’t be many “Red Label” engines about, with their twin S.U. carburetters and special camshaft, whereas there are stacks of 18-h.p. and 21-h.p. Talbots about, giving a choice of 2 1/2 or 3-litre engines. If you want the short wheelbase, the Talbot “65” frame is the one.

All power-units, frames, axles and steering assemblies are interchangeable; the only thing you can’t do being to fit a crash box to an engine intended for a self-changer, and vice versa. The bodywork on the Fox & Nicholl cars was simple to the point of severity, but a 4-seater body, with disappearing hood, enclosed spare wheel and 35-gallon tank, can be housed in a very sporting short chassis T.T. car. The snag to the amateur body-builder is usually double curvature panels, necessitating panel-beating skill and equipment. There is only one piece of double curvature in the whole body, and that is the hinged tail fairing which covers the spare wheel, and that wouldn’t look at all bad with a square corner and single-curvature panelling. Everything else on the car is absolutely standard, including the instrument panel and bonnet. The only things required for body-building are wood framing, fabric and metal covering, A.I. mudguards and a windscreen. The standard Talbot lamps, tie-bar and bracing all come into place nicely. Talk about modified Austin Sevens! The rear petrol tank is perhaps the part requiring most skill; but even this employs only single curvature, and can be riveted and soldered together by anyone with normal engineering skill.

If anyone is interested in constructing or rebuilding one of these cars I should be very pleased to supply photographs or particulars; in addition to which I have a useful quantity of spares for the 18 and 21-h.p. Talbot. My address is: “The Farm House,” Ambersham, Sussex. Telephone No.: Lodsworth 254.