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Moss Motors publication British Motoring

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  • Moss Motors publication British Motoring

    If you're on the Moss Motors mailing list (they have started carrying Mini parts) then you should have received the latest issue of "British Motoring" (Summer 2009) from them. After reading the issue I just had to write them. I thought you might be amused at my email.

    Dear Editor,

    I enjoyed the Summer 2009 issue of "British Motoring." Thanks for sending me a copy.

    Because Moss (in the U.S.) is new to Minis, it may take a while to incorporate them into articles correctly. Here's a few observations from the Summer issue.

    The cover story on handling was interesting. I enjoyed reading about those strange, low production British cars with rear wheel drive. The alignment section (Step 4) had a short paragraph on the Mini and mentioned "adjustable camber plates that tilt in towards the front suspension," and "negative camber arms" for the rear. The front suspension would use longer lower arms (or those adjustable for length) to set camber, not camber plates, along with adjustable tie rods for caster changes. And at the rear, adjustable outer brackets take care of camber and toe in. There are no negative camber arms at the rear.

    Page 14 ends the cover story with some helpful parts suggestions. The coil springs suggested for Minis seem to be popular with some owners; however, it is the hydrolastic cars that can't take the springs, not hydroElastic cars.

    The other article that caught my attention (because of the nice Inno right up front, perhaps?) was the "Hot Blooded" one with many good suggestions to help our British cars survive hot weather. (One of the things not mentioned, and applicable to the Inno would be to get rid of the driving lights!)

    The Fan Size and Rotation section mentions making sure fans are "installed facing the right way and pulling air through the core." First, remember that fans on Minis do not pull air through the radiator. They push air through the radiator. (There's the same issue in the Fan Shrouds section.) Also, the implication is that if the fan is installed backwards, it will move the air the incorrect direction. Not so. A backwards installed fan will still pull (or push, for Minis) air in the correct direction. The process will be less efficient, however. I see this a lot on backwards installed Mini fans where cooling is a bigger issue because of the side mounted radiator. The fan is still pushing air the correct direction, but because of the fan blade shape, not enough air is getting pushed and the car runs hotter than it should; especially at low rpms.

    Keep up the good work and remember that the Mini is just a little bit different from those odd, rear wheel drive cars!

    Chuck Heleker
    Seattle Area Mini Owners Association
    The more I know about Minis, the more I know I don't know about Minis.