Posted From: 18.104.22.168
|Posted on Friday, 26 December, 2003 - 20:21: |
I'm a french RREC's member (living in Paris) and have discovered your site last week. I want to beguin to appologize for my (bad) english.
I'm one of the "younger" french member: 40years old and one of the last RR buyer: shadow 1 from 1976 (SRH22789)wich I've bought last september.
We have the same kind of problem as you: average about 60 years, only 100 members and asking how to know and contact others RR and "young" owners.
May I suggest that, even if we are one of the most active club (quiet one diner or lunch each month and 3 or 4 rallyes a year), not to do all by ourselves, but try to plane some manifestations to show our vehicules on place where people are walking on sunday, etc.
So, we can try to share our interest in our car, explain that it's not so difficult to have a car like this, etc, to try to convice some people that if they dream about, may they are abble to realise it !
sure, it needs time and suppose that club's president have an opened mind of younger's suggestions...
internet is very important too: I'll never bought my shadow if I wasn't abble to discover the world of RREC, forum sites, and how to contact other owners and have pieces of advoice, to rassure about the problems and the work of old cars, maintenance, mechanics, parts etc etc.
one of the way I've used is to email to the ebayers who bild on RR parts, asking them if they are RR's owners ! some have answered and I've two good contacts now. I hope they will be not the last !
wishing to all a happy new year !
Post Number: 165
|Posted on Saturday, 27 December, 2003 - 03:50: |
Welcome to our Forum and I hope you will become an active participant - please register as a non-RROC[A] member so you can enjoy greater use of the site than that available to a guest.
There is no need to apologise on this site for your English expression - after all this is Australia and we are a multicultural society with residents from almost every country in the world so we have an understanding of the problems in communicating with people who do not have English as their first language. For your interest, we have young members who have purchased Shadows/Bentley T's as their first R-R vehicle and they contribute to the Technical Forum on this site.
Post Number: 91
|Posted on Saturday, 27 December, 2003 - 08:53: |
I wish my French was as good as your English! Recently I bought a 1984 Silver Spur. It is a beautiful car and the fifth vehicle from the Factory that I have owned. My other car is an S2 Bentley which I suppose is an imposing vehicle especially today since it stands head and shoulders above most other vehicles and I suppose the young particularly are a little awed by it. The Spur however at a glance could well be taken for a Ford LTD or similar. This is not a criticism but a fact of automotive life. Manufacturers can fiddle with outlandish designs if they have enormous financial backing and no public expectations of their design. But RR to the date the original setup died were always strapped for cash and chose very carefully any changes they were going to make - in appearance particularly. But even with my 'modern' Spur I cannot see what would attract a 'young' person to own one. I try (with a number of my colleagues) to interest the young in the idea of restoring the car to its original form/condition or just getting a bit of equipment on the car to run properly. No success. Those that seem the most interested are clearly impressed by the name and immediately decide that 'tinkering' with this grand car's innards would be akin to regal laparotomy. A few months back I took a friend's Spirit to a local tyre franchise to have a small adjustment made to the toe-in. Up it went on the ramps, three mechanics lay under it and pondered and finally they announced that they had never seen anything like it and declined to help. Here again was a case of the reputation acting to the detriment of the car. But as to age I think you would be at the very lower limit of owners' ages although there are some very notable exceptions. I suppose at 40 you would be in a position to make the initial purchase and you would be old enough to be not over-awed by the name. Hopefully you will have at least a basic understanding of the workings of the car so that you can explain to a mechanic what is the problem and hopefully you will try to learn the many little items of maintenance you can do which will help the car stay on the road. As to public displays, these have to be carefully organised. So often I see groups of our cars accompanied by owners and friends set out in some approximation of a concours at the Cote d'Azure complete with elaborate picnics champagne et al. All very well and enjoyable, I have done plenty of it myself but it takes a very confident member of the public, particularly a 'young' person to walk among that group and ask could he sit in one of the cars or have a look at the engine. Locally we have minimised the 'picnic' setting and in lieu throw cars up on their jacks and pull wheels off, put them up on ramps with waterproof sheets underneath for people to have a look under and plastered the cars with information sheets written in colloquial language. Hopefully our efforts are not in vain since as I never tire of pointing out that this is the last batch of these cars - there will be no more!
Post Number: 38
|Posted on Saturday, 27 December, 2003 - 10:21: |
Welcome to the Australian Club's website and delighted that you have found us! The WWW has certainly opened up so much communication internationally that I am sure that this will be a strong way to encourage more, and hopefully younger, members such as yourself. Your English is fine so please feel free to contribute as you wish, whether questions or discussion points.It is a great way to make friends through the ether and one day when you visit Sydney you will 'know' many!
Just for your interest I am the President of the NSW Branch and not yet fifty! But then it is all a question of how flexible one is to new ideas. I like your idea of public displays - we are increasing club events at public venues and it has been most successful in terms of the public knowing that we exist and wanting to know more about the motor cars. This is especially relevant as 2004 is the Centenary Year for Rolls-Royce.
All the best et bonne chance avec votre belle auto! Kind regards, Jeanne Eve.
Posted From: 22.214.171.124
|Posted on Saturday, 27 December, 2003 - 17:29: |
If you also plan on working on, and learning more about your Shadow, I have the full 5-volume workshop manual on CD for your '76 that will provide much valuable information.
If interested, email me at:
Posted From: 126.96.36.199
|Posted on Saturday, 27 December, 2003 - 18:20: |
I have commented on this issue before, but thought newer members might like to comment on my opinions.
From my point of view the cost of membership to clubs is prohibitive. I would spend far more on membership to various clubs worldwide than I would on my annual insurance bill. This is mainly because I collect various types of "classic" cars. My main gripe is that being isolated I can never enjoy the full benefits of membership such as days out, or workshop days, but most clubs still want to charge me as if I was a full and active member. Even when I lived in a capital city I was never able to attend most meetings of any club I was a member of due to work and other commitments.
No club that I have been in touch with has been willing to offer an "internet only" subscription, which is the only type of membership suited to many such as myself who are time poor and unwilling or unable to attend club meetings, but who would be willing to pay for information and support to enable them to keep the cars on the road.
As to membership ages I was 36 when I got my Bentley T1, a car which I always regarded as a "learning curve" and now at 38 I am well into my 75 Silver Shadow. I have had a lot of help from this forum as well as from RR mechanics and parts suppliers, but am still not a member of any RR club and at this rate will probably never be.
Posted From: 188.8.131.52
|Posted on Saturday, 27 December, 2003 - 18:42: |
Hi everybody, Larry, Bill and Jeanne Eve,
thanks for the very kind words I've read. thanks for your proposition too, Larry, for 5 volume CD, but's it's one of the first thinks I've bought to secure my mind driving my car ! actually, I'm expecting for a (rare) french version, according with my "second period" shadow 70-77 !
if you may are interestink of buy it, I have VHS videos tape (in english) for brakes and hydrolics maintenance by Ralph Cuzon, very easy to learn how to do the maintenance yourself...sure, as we have already a little discussed on the Swamnelstein forum, I can say that it doesn't mean the job is easy to do !!!!
One of the reason that I want to suggest to the french RREC president to plan events for publics is that all people (to beguin all my friends, who doesn't believe at first,I've bought a RR !) do think that RR (and old cars) are very expensive to buy and to maintain. Expensive to buy, not more as other's great cars, principally shadow's (and more RHD like the one I wanted) wich in West europe, you can find between 9000 and 20000 euros; sure, Clouds, Spurs, Spirits are a little more expensive, between 15000 and 40000euros ! But what I mean is that in fact, buy the car is just the first little step and after you have alternative to maintain and aren't obliged to go on dealers with astronomics prices!
In France, we do have chance to have some mechanics who are knowed by RREC's members, and who do work on olds cars; some pre-war cars, others all cars, connecting with a specialist of RR's parts in all europe. So, around paris, we do have 3 adressses, and on "cote d'azur", 3 too; much more one or two near Bordeaux. May they are more, but not knowed and published in french RREC bulletin. The only problem is that after rallyes, they have such cars to maintain and you often have to wait 1 month before they do the job on yours ! But sure, you always learn to do somethink on your car. So, with patience, time and a part of your money, you can have this kind of car and maybe it's more easy as others ! and you have to enjoy it !
to ended, I wanted to ask to Bill what's the others cars He owned before the Spur and S2 now ?
I don't know if some day I can go on Australia...it's one of my dream too ! but if someone comes to France, Paris or Cote d'azur, may we can meet because I spend quiet all my summertimme (July and August) in Cannes.
I wish all an Hapy New Year and hope, soon on the technical forum,
Post Number: 92
|Posted on Saturday, 27 December, 2003 - 22:25: |
Hi again seRRgio. My previous cars were a manual gearbox 'Z' series 'R'Type Bentley and prior to that a 1951 'B' series short boot 4 1/4 litre Silver Dawn. The latter car I completely dismantled down to the chassis frame, welded it from end to end and rebuilt the mechanicals. The only bit I could not do was the welding and engine machining. I had never tackled a job as complex as this but was obliged to do so as I had little money and a family to raise. I was 35 at the time and the only information I had on the car was a heap of copies I had made in America of workshop manuals service instructions and spare parts books. The Club at the time was of absolutely no help whatsoever. My only dividend from an annual membership fee was a duplicated monthly magazine detailing who was seen at what party, the odd recipe and a few off-colour jokes. Any serious enquiries I made to people who appeared to work on the cars resulted in a stone wall often with the invitation to send the car to them to carry out the work. The Club library consisted of tomes of beautiful pictures of all manner of RR's and B's which did not sit well with a Dawn that had the front mudguards off, all the paint scaped off the front end and an engine that emulated a castinet when it warmed up. For the record 2 people were of inestimable help, the late Don Appleby and the late Bruce Ross. The former was the workshop manager of the then Sydney agents and Bruce had his own Sydney business. There was never any talk of trade secrets or upping the price of a part that I needed because it was in short supply. In fact Don used to say that he had certain things in stock that would not move and let me have them at a good discount. Those days passed quickly. I had two local friends with Dawns who were as curious as I was as what to do with which when the time came but it was very helpful to compare notes and bounce off ideas. There was a local Club member who had three RR's and he was always happy to share his advice. His son is now the most energetic Club member we have locally in the technical field. Anyway the car was duly finished and ran beautifully. It desperately needed repainting so with a book in one hand I repainted it with more bog and undercoat than you would find on the QEII but I couldn't afford to pop the body in and have it worked over etc. Years later an account was published describing in the most disparaging terms what an awful paint job it was. Such are latter day experts. Anyway I am pleased to say that all this is changing. We have now at least three readily accessable no-holds-barred web sites and a growing network of enthusiasts around Australia and overseas who without exception are willing to share their knowledge. In Australia we have a bourgening incidence of self help groups fostered by the Club that bring owners and enthusiasts together for mutual assistance and instruction by example. I have produced the Tee One Topics - a newsletter each month dealing almost exclusively with technical matters and in Canberra we have amassed a complete set of technical material for all postwar cars! When you come to Australia mate, wear overalls and we will certainly pop a spanner in your hand!
Post Number: 81
|Posted on Saturday, 27 December, 2003 - 22:33: |
You will find slowly how many myths there are about your car. These cars are not really difficult to work on, even concerning major overhauls. I joined the RROC(A) when I was 15, 22 years ago. My father had a 1954 R-Type automatic then, and he gave it to me when I was 21 as it had no power steering. I first took over all work on the car when I first overhauled its motor myself in 1973, do all the work on the Turbo R and most on the T-Series when I visit Canberra.
It is in very fine shape, and I have done everything myself except for the leatherwork for which I engaged a specialist. It is still mine, located in Canberra, Australia, where I first met Bill 22 years ago when he had his beautiful 1951 Silver Dawn. My father replaced the R-Type by a 1972 T-Series which he still drives several times weekly.
Bill's story about toe-in is not unusual but shows how conservative tyre dealers alone have become. Our local Canberra tyre outlet does the T-Series in minutes. When I replaced the Turbo's steering rack this Summer, I simply used a tape measure to set the toe-in. I then checked it electronically at the tyre dealer and it was spot on. I have only ever used a tape measure on the R-Type, and in its 700,000km the tyres have never worn incorrectly.
As I now live in Switzerland, some years ago I bought the Turbo R 20,000 series. It is a fantastic family daily car, especially at speed in Germany. I have always regarded the R-R brand naff and the drive squishy compared to Bentley, but that is pure personal choice. I still think a Spirit or Spur is highly besirable. Short wheel base Turbo R's or Continental T's are unbeatable, whereas R-R's benefit from a long wheel base with the soft suspension.
Surely Bentley Turbos appeal to younger people, and they are so practical. The performance is amazing.
My main point is that the children of the middle-aged owners could well be our targets.
They are the most willing to try their hands technically. Shadows and Spirits are so ridiculously cheap to buy these days that younger members can surely afford them. Spares prices have also dived with Internet clarity forcing stiff competition. The Tee-One group is an ideal forum to attract the young rev-heads, ideally with the high-powered Bentleys. Encouragement with strong technical support, guidelines on which spares are genuine only, and which don't matter (eg spark plugs and fan belts) will surely give confidence to and attract new younger members more than showing off daunting million dollar chequebook restorations can ever do.
Any ideas ?
By the way, the RROC(A) is not at all expensive to join, and nor is the RROC Inc in the USA. I am a member of the RROC(A), the RROC Inc and RREC Swiss Section. The latter is a must for cheap insurance, but costs over A$400 to join and A$400 annually. Compare that !
Posted From: 184.108.40.206
|Posted on Sunday, 28 December, 2003 - 17:31: |
If you were 15, 22 years ago - meaning you are 37 today - then, you are saying you completely overhauled the R-Type engine when you were 7?
I'm still at my beginning learning stages now at 41 years old!
Post Number: 82
|Posted on Sunday, 28 December, 2003 - 19:17: |
Woops. Well spotted typo ! Time flies. It was 32 years ago that I was 15 ! Time flies.
Posted From: 220.127.116.11
|Posted on Friday, 02 January, 2004 - 19:33: |
Happy New Year !
As I've tell, answering to Jeanne in the "2004 centenary of RR" thread, may someone, like Richard living in Swisszerland, would be abble to join one of the special manifestation for the centenary in France.
With best wishes again !
serge (shadow SRH22789)