Stripping a Mini for spares

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MOT failure Mini Cooper

A mate of mine who owns a couple of Minis dropped me an email recently asking me if I knew anyone that wanted a 1991 Mini Cooper. It had failed its MOT so badly that he just wanted shot of it..

I had nowhere to store another car so he said I could take whatever parts I wanted off it as Mini spares and he'd dispose of whatever was left.

The car didn't look too bad (the photo shows the car after I'd removed the headlight covers and grill) and I felt pretty guilty stripping down a Mini with the knowledge that the car was going to be turned into scrap metal. But as I removed parts, the body started to fall apart. As I removed more and more parts I saw that the body had had it, it was nothing but rust! A pity really but at least these Mini spare parts would help keep another Mini on the road.

It took three visits to strip the Mini down and take the Mini bits away in my Mini. I can tell you that I learned so much about how Minis are put together just from stripping one down. When you work on your own car you tend to be really careful because if you break something, it can be expensive to replace. With stripping down someone else's car for Mini spares you don't really care, and as such you just dive in and take it apart. I learned that the Mini is really easy to take apart, you just need lots of WD40 and elbow grease!

Back home I started to fit some of the parts to Lucy. She has never had a passenger side mirror, but now she does. I also fitted the correct Mini seat belt stalks in the front as mine had Maxi/Alegro style ones for some reason. I also fitted a fair few cosmetic touches that were not on my car but were on the donor.

My garage is now full of Mini spares that I am sure will come in use.

It's almost that time of year again, MOT test time!

I do like a challenge and Lucy is providing me with one. I have just over a month to do the following:

Wish me luck!

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