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8 & 10 cyl Bristol cars Type 407 onwards - restoration, repair, maintenance etc

Newbie - Considering fulfilling a long ambition

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Old 07-02-10, 09:58 PM
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Default Newbie - Considering fulfilling a long ambition

I have been keen to own a Bristol for quite a few years, I've read all the books and now intend to go ahead and buy one. I am used to handbuilt cars and their foibles having owned a number of other hand-built cars, I currently have a Morgan AeroMax, as well as another Morgan and some tin-tops.

It has been interesting reading the various threads on this site, even if it surprised me to read some of the more ascerbic comments, I always thought that Bristol-folk would be total gentlemen/gentlewomen! Luckily, this seems to be the exception rather than the rule and it really is a super site.

Anyway, I think the way to go for me is to buy a second-hand Blenheim but I am really open to any advice re model's and who to buy from. I intend going up to the showroom when I am back in the UK, are there any other marque specialists that I should speak to?

I hope that I've not been controversial, as that is not my intention rather I am really just after some marque advice.

Brian

Last edited by Aeroman; 07-02-10 at 10:09 PM.
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Old 07-02-10, 10:28 PM
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Default Newbie - Considering fulfilling a long amition

Hi Brian, you might consider joining the owners club, where you will
find a real welcome.

I bought my first Bristol by hunting around but I have subsequently
bought directly from Bristol and I would strongly recommend it,
especially with their no quibble warranty. It really is no quibble!
Which is amazing to get on cars up to sixty years old. You might be
pleasantly surprised at the value for money and a visit to the
showroom is always a treat anyway.

They have some very nice Blenheims in stock at the moment, including
the first 3s which I have driven and it is a rocketship in A1 nick.
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Old 07-02-10, 11:28 PM
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Dear Brian,
I wish you the best of luck in making your decisions...

I have to second lansdownplace's comment about BOC, AND about going to Kensington High Street, and to consider very, very seriously dealing with them.

It's what I did, with never a regret, about two years ago...and ended up bringing a '79 603 into the US. Had I been able to work it out, I would have preferred a newer model, but from our import rules, couldn't have done so.

You can see my car here in the albums, all work done by Bristol, after working with Toby Silverton of Bristol. Third album down: Bristols Seen and Owners Met, elaborated upon in BOC Bulletin #137. I can also send you the article if you'd like.
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Old 08-02-10, 09:47 AM
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Many thanks to both of you for such prompt replies and that Kentucky Red really does look gorgeous and I look forward to reading more about it. I have applied to join the BOC and will certainly visit Kensington High Street when I am back in the UK in early March.

The 3S certainly looks the sort of car in which I would be interested, though I will be in a better position to buy a car in the second half of the year. I will keep you informed of my progress and thanks again, it was good to hear from you.

BR Brian
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Old 08-02-10, 04:00 PM
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Default Newbie - Considering fulfilling a long amition

Hi, Brian - small world, isn't it

After Morgans, you will find a S3 a very different car, I remember
complaining to Brian Marelli (of Bristol Car Services in Chiswick)
that the suspension of my Brigand was still a bit too soft to
my liking, and he responded "But, Sir, you came here in a Morgan.
After that, *anything* will feel soft!

Bristols do have their share of "They all do that, Sir", but
as long as you are willing to pay, the Chiswick team will sort
it out.

Julf
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Old 08-02-10, 04:22 PM
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Hmmm - if I had the money, a 411 S6 for me. Modern mechanics with, to my eyes, the most handsome bodyshape.
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Old 09-02-10, 03:39 PM
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Hi Julf,

Yes isn't it, I'd forgotten that you have a Bristol in your collection!

Don't forget that the suspension in the Aero range is much more forgiving than the original on the trads, and is certainly much more comfortable than the 911 that we have, so I'm sure we can coe to terms with the ride in a Bristol.

Thanks for the advice about Chiswick, it seems that a Kensington car is the way to go. I will make an appointment for early March and see how I get on. I look forward to joining the club of Bristol owners.

BR Brian
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Old 09-02-10, 03:46 PM
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That could be an option jimfoz, but I do quite like the style of the Blenheim - it's a handsome car I think.

Brian
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Old 09-02-10, 05:56 PM
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Default Newbie - Considering fulfilling a long ambition

A good used Blenheim from Bristol Cars direct is difficult to beat
as they mostly seem to have very very low milage and the
depreciation during ownership is negligible if present at all if you
maintain it well. The price seems to be dictated by condition not age.

The series six option is available on the earlier v8s, the 603s and
412s as well so you can have absolutely anything you want, You could
go the whole hog you could buy a Blenheim to drive whilst waiting
for your series 6 car, which a lot of people seem to do.

I bought a 412 factory restoration package (with donor car included)
when I went in to buy a Blenheim. Visiting Kensington is a bit like
being a kid in a sweet shop unfortunately!

Paul
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Old 16-03-10, 02:45 PM
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Small world Brian!
Still hunting a Bristol but got side tracked by a Gordon Keeble.....
Bristol Owner's club worth joinging in my opinion

Last edited by Enthusiast; 16-03-10 at 02:47 PM. Reason: missed text
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Old 24-03-10, 11:04 AM
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Hi Roger

'Another' Mog refugee it seems! Did you buy a GK or where you just looking? A Bristol is a much better choice imho!

As you suggest, I have already joined the club and am now just finalising the purchase of a Blenheim.

Cheers
Brian
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Old 25-03-10, 01:37 PM
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This one, Brian?

http://i34.photobucket.com/albums/d1...er006thumb.jpg
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Old 28-03-10, 04:23 PM
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That's the one Lou, ex Simon Draper's collection I believe? It is having a couple of things done to it by Bristol and then I pick it up on the 20th April 2010.

Cheers
Brian

P.S. Does anyone have any recommendations on insurance, as I'm having a pretty negative reaction so far from our usual insurers.
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Old 28-03-10, 04:26 PM
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Thanks for the advice Paul, ended up doing the same but bought the Blenheim 3S that they had in the showroom. Thanks to several others also for their advice off-group.

Best wishes
Brian
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Old 28-03-10, 05:05 PM
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Default Newbie - Considering fulfilling a long ambition

I use Aon as recommended by the BOC.
They are now tied up with Footman James.
A discount is supposidly offered to BOC members.

They are contactable in the first instance on 0844 875 0579

Nick C.
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Old 28-03-10, 05:40 PM
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Default Newbie - Considering fulfilling a long ambition

Hi Brian,

I would strongly recommend A-Plan as Brokers who specialise in exotica. (Chris Bishop 01494 427900). They have covered my rebuilt 412 with Hiscox on an agreed valuation supplied by BCL (which I can tell you about off forum). The cover is with Hiscox and other than requiring a tracker because of the value they are very easy going. It is insured for business and pleasure with unlimited milage and repairs at BCL rather than Knock 'U' Out Body and Chop Shop where most insurers put you for repairs. I have had a heavily uprated new engine installed recently and they were happy with this and didn't load the premium. It is a little more expensive than Aon but in my experience you get what you pay for and the actual value for money is the same. The AON policy has a lot of small caveats. Hiscox are excellent insurers when it comes to payout time, which is when you need it.

That particular Blenheim 3S is an absolutely fabulous car, I believe it is the first 3S.A very good buy indeed.

Paul W.
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Old 28-03-10, 07:52 PM
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Congratulations, Brian!

Who did Draper use for insurance? They would already know the car.

Knowing that a couple of Draper Bristols are pictured in Balfour's book, I looked, but this is not one of them.
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Old 29-03-10, 06:38 AM
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Default Newbie - Considering fulfilling a long am...

The proof of the pudding is when you come to claim. I have been with
Footman James which is now Anon and was unfortunate to have my car damaged by a
third party. The first thing they did was to try and get me to sign up with
a car hire company who wanted to charge 200 gbp a day for a hire car for me
to drive, and also sign a finance agreement so that when you read the
small print you are responsible for all the costs of the repair if the other
side does not pay. But they say if it does go wrong the holding company will
cover you, but there is nothing in writing to say this, and of course they
are not involved unless something goes wrong.

I would suggest that you insure with an insurance company direct that
covers all aspects themselves and not to a broker that farms out the various
covers to different organisations, this is what I will do next time.

Bellerophon
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Old 29-03-10, 07:53 AM
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I agree with Bellerophon, and from experience. Most insurance companies are very active in trying to deny claims, particularly around non-disclosure and they all want to hammer costs down. Hiscox have an extremely good reputation on claims. The only good practical example I can give you is on my home insurance, when my son smashed a very expensive brand new flat screen TV playing Nintedo Wi Boxing (He thought the closer you stood the better the boxing). I rang Hiscox helpline and told them what had happened (honestly), they asked for the TV model number, looked up the retail price and the full replacement value less excess was in my bank account the following day.

On getting a replacement car to drive during repairs, be careful, they will reclaim some or all of the cost from you if you don't reclaim all the costs from the other side unless your policy explicitly states that you are covered for a like for like replacement car during repairs. Often they only specify 'a car' and you get a Corsa.

On using brokers, the cost is the same whether you use one or go direct generally speaking. If you have a good broker they will help when there is a claim and do know what to do if it goes bent. You also get a second layer of protection as they are regulated by the FSA. Both the insurance company and the broker are required to 'Treat you Fairly'

As Bristol are the best people to repair a Bristol, I wouldn't use anyone that didn't cover OM repairs. Hiscox policy is summarised here http://www.hiscox.co.uk/personal-and...tor-insurance/ but do use a Broker as you get more leverage. As I said in an earlier post, Chris Bishop of A-Plan is very good and they do shop around. I have used them for almost ten years. 01494 510 520. All in all you get what you pay for.



Paul W.
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Old 29-03-10, 09:46 AM
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I have had exactly the same problem with SAGA concerning a claim on our day car. A company called Help-Hire supplied a car at 130 per day. The repair at their 'approved repairer' took two weeks longer than anticpated to prolong the hire. I would not enter into the agreement, and Help-Hire didn't realise that I hadn't signed. I told SAGA that my contract was with them and nobody else - they have never responded. RH Hoskin cover our other classics and with one claim in twelve years which was settled instantly with a repair which exceeded the value of the car. They also covered competitive regularity rallies on the continent and one in Iceland at no extra charge.

Richard Clarke
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