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Vauxhall Carlton Mk1 Estate


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#1 mantasrme

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 10:09 AM

Well i have been after an estate car for a little while but cannot bring myself to buy anything too modern.
I was looking at Omega estates but all the ones in my price range had been to the moon and back on mileage, so i kept looking.
Then this popped up on the Retro-Rides forum cheap,

Posted Image

It had suffered a small bump at the front and the rear bumper was out of line, the engine smoked a bit and the clutch was going.
Now i was never a fan of Carlton's as such, but after a dig through my collection of haynes manuals i found one for an Opel Rekord of the same year
As they are basically the same car i soon realised how much of the running gear on the carlton was the same/ similar to manta stuff.
A bit of hunting around the web told me that they were very rare in the MK1 (infact i think i've only ever seen 1 in the flesh before and that was at billing)

So i decided to go down to Derby and have a look at it, I will admit that i borrowed next doors 4x4 and went with my trailer so the odds of me not buying it were very slim really.
Anyway it was as described and with jump leads attached fired up straight away.
It has a 2.0CIH engine on a carb and a 5speed gearbox (even though the haynes said the early ones only had a 4speed)
The interior is very old styled but it all works and looks in good condition.
So the deal was done, and i loaded up and headed home.
Posted Image

The interior wasn't in bad condition but was dirty, the drivers seat being the worst. But i think a pair of manta recaros will sort that out.
Posted Image

I spent a couple of hours yesterday with a selection of hammers and my Porta-power hydraulic body ram kit and straightened the front end back to where it should be (or close enough)
Fortunatly the car came with a spare indicator.
Posted Image

The wing will either need a new section making up or i will just replace it (there is a new wing on e-bay currently)

Unfortunatly the paintwork is an area i will have to address at some point (and not only because i don't like green cars)
The tailgate is covered in small chips and rust around the rear window. As i think a new tailgate will be as rare as a rare thing this will need to be sorted and saved
Posted Image

There is also a couple of good (bad) deep scratches and dints on the nsr door and 1/4 where a pushbike crashed into the car.
The nsr door lower and lower rear 1/4-arch is also rusting
Posted Image
Posted Image

But all in all its not bad for a 28year old bus.
There looks to only have been 3 patches of welding done in its life, both inner wings by the turret tops have small patches and the rear of the NS sill has a small patch aswell.
Now none of them are neatly done but all are still solid and have been there a while so i may have to leave them for the moment.
It does require 1 further patch where the OSR seat belt anchor has been pulled out of the floor leaving a 2"x3" hole, but i think i can cope with that :D

So where do i go from here with it :unsure:
Well i know i'm changing the front seats, and the bus sized steering wheel.
After that a set of manta alloys and 16v front brakes (which i happen to have lying around :rolleyes: )
Then i think its MOT time and i'll drive it around a bit before deciding the next step.

I doubt the engine will stay for very long but i'm not sure what i will be dropping in as a replacement.
Unlike the manta their isn't a big crossmember in the way under the front of the engine,
instead the subframe goes under just behind the middle and the steering arms (as it has a steering box instead of rack) go under the rear but neither are exactly close to the bottom of the engine
So any engine with a deep front end to the sump should drop in nicely.
Which should mean any engine fitted to an Omega, Monza, or Senator should fit with very little trouble :thumbup

Only decision will be if i stay with a 4cylinder and just drop an XE in (especially as i have a spare one here at the moment)
But then i think a straight 6 (12v or 24v) or V6 would make it a much better towing vehicle

Hmmmmmmmmmm <_<

#2 andyc

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 10:54 AM

That would look so cool with a slight drop, only slight on the suspension and the drop in a 3.0V6 Omega lump and 5speed box

Having said that as its a Rekord which had a straight six in them you could go for something like a 24v Straight Six

Good luck with it and keep us informed on progress

Andy

Edited by andyc, 15 May 2010 - 10:57 AM.


#3 gsi marc

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 10:56 AM

Likin the carlton estate, carnt think of anything better to trailor around a manta very cool, good luck with the resto :thumbup

#4 Titson

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 03:03 PM

Well i have been after an estate car for a little while but cannot bring myself to buy anything too modern.
I was looking at Omega estates but all the ones in my price range had been to the moon and back on mileage, so i kept looking.
Then this popped up on the Retro-Rides forum cheap,

Posted Image

It had suffered a small bump at the front and the rear bumper was out of line, the engine smoked a bit and the clutch was going.
Now i was never a fan of Carlton's as such, but after a dig through my collection of haynes manuals i found one for an Opel Rekord of the same year
As they are basically the same car i soon realised how much of the running gear on the carlton was the same/ similar to manta stuff.
A bit of hunting around the web told me that they were very rare in the MK1 (infact i think i've only ever seen 1 in the flesh before and that was at billing)

So i decided to go down to Derby and have a look at it, I will admit that i borrowed next doors 4x4 and went with my trailer so the odds of me not buying it were very slim really.
Anyway it was as described and with jump leads attached fired up straight away.
It has a 2.0CIH engine on a carb and a 5speed gearbox (even though the haynes said the early ones only had a 4speed)
The interior is very old styled but it all works and looks in good condition.
So the deal was done, and i loaded up and headed home.
Posted Image

The interior wasn't in bad condition but was dirty, the drivers seat being the worst. But i think a pair of manta recaros will sort that out.
Posted Image

I spent a couple of hours yesterday with a selection of hammers and my Porta-power hydraulic body ram kit and straightened the front end back to where it should be (or close enough)
Fortunatly the car came with a spare indicator.
Posted Image

The wing will either need a new section making up or i will just replace it (there is a new wing on e-bay currently)

Unfortunatly the paintwork is an area i will have to address at some point (and not only because i don't like green cars)
The tailgate is covered in small chips and rust around the rear window. As i think a new tailgate will be as rare as a rare thing this will need to be sorted and saved
Posted Image

There is also a couple of good (bad) deep scratches and dints on the nsr door and 1/4 where a pushbike crashed into the car.
The nsr door lower and lower rear 1/4-arch is also rusting
Posted Image
Posted Image

But all in all its not bad for a 28year old bus.
There looks to only have been 3 patches of welding done in its life, both inner wings by the turret tops have small patches and the rear of the NS sill has a small patch aswell.
Now none of them are neatly done but all are still solid and have been there a while so i may have to leave them for the moment.
It does require 1 further patch where the OSR seat belt anchor has been pulled out of the floor leaving a 2"x3" hole, but i think i can cope with that :D

So where do i go from here with it :unsure:
Well i know i'm changing the front seats, and the bus sized steering wheel.
After that a set of manta alloys and 16v front brakes (which i happen to have lying around :rolleyes: )
Then i think its MOT time and i'll drive it around a bit before deciding the next step.

I doubt the engine will stay for very long but i'm not sure what i will be dropping in as a replacement.
Unlike the manta their isn't a big crossmember in the way under the front of the engine,
instead the subframe goes under just behind the middle and the steering arms (as it has a steering box instead of rack) go under the rear but neither are exactly close to the bottom of the engine
So any engine with a deep front end to the sump should drop in nicely.
Which should mean any engine fitted to an Omega, Monza, or Senator should fit with very little trouble :thumbup

Only decision will be if i stay with a 4cylinder and just drop an XE in (especially as i have a spare one here at the moment)
But then i think a straight 6 (12v or 24v) or V6 would make it a much better towing vehicle

Hmmmmmmmmmm <_<



Nice project, got a 24v engine if interested.

#5 cam.in.head

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 04:49 PM

nice to see a mk1 thats gonna get restored. i have a mk2 2.2 which ive had for 16 years. excellent cars. the only main & serious area to rectify now while its in useable condition is the strut top area. if someone has welded it here then chances are it was just a cover up job for an mot without taknig the wing off.the area rusts & spreads to the REINFORCEMENT SECTION underneath .this is what carries all the weight. for example if you removed all the inner wing around the strut area all would stay put on a solid car. what usually happerns is the whole area corrodes & then the strut tower collapses inwards.closing up the bonnet gap.
bodge up jobs then tend to pull it back in line & weld the inner wing under bonnet only.
what i did on mine was while i was replacing outer wings i cut all the inner wing away around the strut top area. attended to any repairs on the reinforcement section then replaced inner wing area with 16 guage galv.
this was done when the car was first bought in 94 before any serious corrosion set in & has been perfect even since.
just advice thats not really difficult but well worth it if you intent keeping it a while.
all the best .....chris............

#6 mantadoc

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 05:06 PM

Weld up the rear doors, flatten the sides and it'll make a great van.

Then you can fit the slash cut zoomies :)


Drop in an Omega diseasel for cheap running.

#7 gsi marc

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 06:40 PM

Weld up the rear doors, flatten the sides and it'll make a great van.

Then you can fit the slash cut zoomies :)


Drop in an Omega diseasel for cheap running.


Now theres a plan that sounds good, could do with photo shopping that one !!!!!!!

#8 mantadoc

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 06:51 PM

If you want to add a slice of cheese.......

Gloss black

Red stripe

Nudge bar (narrow dukes of hazard style, any self respecting service barge should have one, my Kadett used too :) )

Oh yeah, GM (drop the C) in red on the front panel.

#9 mantasrme

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 07:49 PM

Thanks for the comments.

Had a little play with it today and finished straightening the rear bumper and re-doing the mounts.
Its now tucked a little closer to the rear of the car and looks much better.

I also swapped one of my spare manta rims onto it.
It may look like a small wheel but its actually a 16" compomotive with a 205/50 tyre on it
Posted Image

Think it needs to be a tad lower
About this height will do for me i think
Posted Image
As i can't stay standing on the front bumper to achieve this i think i may need to alter the springs ;)


Going to try and get the welding done on the OSR inner wheel arch tomorrow.
Then i think i might take the front wings off and make sure the repairs there have been done well enough (thanks for the tip Chris :thumbup )
Will have to make myself an upper strutbrace when i put the final engine in, just to help strengthen things.

Looking at the doors/wings and 1/4 bellow the trim level they all have bad rust blemishes
So i may end up rubbing it all down and treating them before stone chipping it up to the trim.
Not sure if i will leave it black of get some green paint to go over with.

If the rear doors or inner arches were shot i could see making it into a van, but i need it to carry people around too so the doors will have to stay.
Oh i can't paint it like the A-team van either as there is already a van going around Harrogate with that paintjob :rolleyes:

The straight 6 24v is a tempting lump to fit but i would prefer to drop a newer V6 in.
That will have to wait a while though until i have some more space.

#10 Kevin Abbott

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 07:56 PM

I like it, the rear axle is the one i got and is similar to the 400 one, great estate :thumbup
If you need any bits let me know as me and my mate chopped one up a few months ago ;)

#11 Exclusive Opel

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 09:26 PM

Couple of genuine front wings here:

Link

Didn't some of these have a bonnet bulge or was that just on the Rekord? I used to see one of these driving around locally in baby poo brown, until a couple of years ago, forgotten all about it until now.

:)

#12 mantasrme

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 10:23 PM

I like it, the rear axle is the one i got and is similar to the 400 one, great estate :thumbup
If you need any bits let me know as me and my mate chopped one up a few months ago ;)

Yeah the fact that the rear axle is 5 linked as standard was an added reason for buying the car.
I've sent you a PM re the parts :)

Couple of genuine front wings here:
Link

Many thanks for that i'm after a wing and at that price might well have a pair :thumbup

#13 stradacab

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Posted 16 May 2010 - 10:56 AM

Bonnet lump was unique to the derv engined models

#14 mantadoc

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Posted 16 May 2010 - 01:05 PM

Yeah the fact that the rear axle is 5 linked as standard was an added reason for buying the car.
I've sent you a PM re the parts :)


Many thanks for that i'm after a wing and at that price might well have a pair :thumbup


Hmmm, block it up so the sills are parallel to the floor and use it to make a jig of the axle mounts.

Then two plates drilled to 4 stud PCD with box section to keep distance between fixed and you have everything needed to accurately fit these to a Manta.

I have been told the easiest way to find 5 stud drums was to re-drill Carlton. Wonder if my 5 stud halfshafts fit these? Anyone know?

Saw a red Manta B with the carlton bulge and diseasel fitted in a breakers in Bury in 92. looked pretty good.

Tailgate wise, thought they face lifted the front but the tailgate and A pillars back was left alone.

If the rear doors or inner arches were shot i could see making it into a van, but i need it to carry people around too so the doors will have to stay.


I used to know someone with fitted back seats in an Astra van, Manta Recaros slide forward and tilt, sure the doors are a little short but people could squeeze in lol

Anyway, add 400 arches and it could make a nice stepside pickup. It's not like having that hatch apature with low sill hasn't done most of the tailgate work for you.

#15 mantasrme

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Posted 17 May 2010 - 07:08 PM

Todays progress was quite good considering I didn't get much time on it before the rain arrived.
The hole where the rear seatbelt bolt goes, got cleaned up first.
Posted Image

Then I started cleaning up around the 5p sized hole in the sill.
I knew it was going to be bigger but I wasn't quite expecting it to get to this size!
Posted Image
But thats what happens when you put filler over rust :(

While getting rid of the filler in the sill I noticed it also went up the arch a bit
Posted Image

Hmmm filler over rusty metal, now how do I remove that again?
Oh yeah just pull
Posted Image

With all the rust cleaned away a new bit of arch was shaped to fit.
Didn't have a carlton arch, and didn't want to wait. So i used a bit of manta arch left over from a previous repair.
Posted Image

All patches welded in place and treated with rust inhibitor (Bilt Hambers best ;))
Posted Image

Thats when the rain arrived :(

So i'll have to do the filler and put a bit of paint on it later in the week.
Will also be having the drivers side front wing off to check/repair the inner wing rail.

#16 mitch1965

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 05:45 PM

I know this car & i have driven it, when it was owned by the previous owner to who you bought it off. It went well, but yes its a bit "tired"
It was even a car featured by TV too.Posted Image May's issue..Posted Image
Liking the plans, but was gutted to see this pranged..Posted Image
Just dug this pic out, of mine & yours, took back in February

Posted Image

Edited by mitch1965, 21 May 2010 - 05:51 PM.


#17 mantasrme

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 09:54 PM

I know this car & i have driven it, when it was owned by the previous owner to who you bought it off. It went well, but yes its a bit "tired"
It was even a car featured by TV too.Posted Image May's issue..Posted Image
Liking the plans, but was gutted to see this pranged..Posted Image
Just dug this pic out, of mine & yours, took back in February

Posted Image

Thanks for the pic :thumbup
I shall have to find a copy of TV


Right today i have mostly been chopping out rust :(

There had been a repair to the OS inner wing/ strut tower area that didn't look brilliant.
As Chris 'cam.in.head' said earlier this is a weak point and potential major problem.

So i had a quick poke with a screwdriver and found a big rust hole under the wing mounting rail just behind the patch.
Posted Image

Because this is the inside of a box section and the wing strengthener is the outside i needed to take the wing off for a look around.
Posted Image

The rust had holed the strengthener piece on the outside of where the rusty hole is.
Posted Image

The problem comes that i couldn't get into the box section well enough to ensure i get rid of the rust completly and any thin metal.
So the only option was to chop off the strengthener plate and then repair the inner piece before replacing the outer again.
So i drilled out the spot welds around the front, then sliced through the rear.
Posted Image

With the outer off you can see the rust spreading aorund the inside
Posted Image

The patch next to the strut top was covering rust, but it was only the original inner wing top rusting and hadn't bitten into the strut tower itself
Posted Image

I bent up a nice sturdy piece of steel to repair the inner wing top and mounting rail all in one piece.
Then welded that in.
The outer reinforcer had the rusty bit chopped out of it and a new piece bent up and welded in
before refitting it and plug/seam welding it back.
For some reason i didn't take any during pictures for this bit, just got carried away chopping and welding.

but this is the after.
Posted Image

and the inner wing after a quick tidy up with the finger belt sander and a lick of zinc primer
Posted Image

While i had the wing off i decided to do a quick repair for the missing piece at the lower front edge.
The wing is going to be replaced as i have a new one on its way.
But to make it neater and keep the MOT man happy i bent up some thin metal and tack welded it on from behind.
Than a quick skim of filler and flick of paint.
Looks fine from a distance, bit tatty when closer in but there are dents above it anyway.
Posted Image

This is how it looks currently, i took 1 coil off the rear to level it out a tad.
Posted Image

Its off for its MOT tomorrow so we'll see what else i need to do after that :unsure::P

#18 garymanc

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 10:08 PM

good luck with mot...... got May's issue off tv , pm me your address and you can have it
:thumbup

#19 mitch1965

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 11:07 PM

Great work with this one & it does look tidier now, some serious welding done here mate, nice one..Posted Image

#20 philips

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 12:08 AM

Good luck with the MOT.....
im sure it will pass :thumbup




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