The Restoration of TRisha TR

Rear Deck - A Caution!

The TR7 didn't change massively during it production run... we'll ignore the fact that they chopped the roof off in 1979 and the limited runs of anything other than the 8v engine. Yes there were cosmetic changes such as the trim, courtesy lights, flush mounted boot lock, and the double bulge bonnet, oh and not forgetting the different door-locks!! The difference I'm looking at here is the that between the early and late FHCs, chiefly because there were no early DHCs.

When the Triumph TR7 FHC was launched in 1976 it didn't have a lockable fuel-cap. Before you ask this was not even an option and has never become an after-market option either. Instead it had some weird anti-siphon contraption which (unlike other parts of the car... the clock - I've a thing about those!!) did actually work. I digress... the filler cap was large, very large and the bezel area was shallow.... very shallow. On the later models a lockable cap was fitted which entailed a much deeper bezeSpot the difference? 'Conversion' part is on the left.l area.

So the rear deck...The deck on TRisha was shot - having previously been repaired along the window edge, and the seam with the wing. It was felt the best, and cheapest, thing to do was to replace it entirely... but little did we realise. Early rear deck's for the FHC are a rare commodity, I assume this is due to the amount of early FHC's that had been scrapped before the idea of salvage was thought of. Still that's not a problem - you fit a late deck. But you can't.

As previously mentioned there's a shallow vs deep thing going on here (you may have picked up on that). The early deck is shallow, the late is deep - this means a straight swap would leave the late type deck sitting about 2.5cms above the rear wing. So you have to fit a late deck, to your early FHC and change the fitment! But that's not really the case. The 'conversion kit' simply isn't. Obviously I can't say what every suppliers fitting kit is like but I can comment on those supplying this one. Look at the pictures... the first picture (above) shows the original 'box' in situ along with that supplied to allow conversion. Hmmm not a great deal of difference is there? The second image (left) shows the 'late' fitment and this is correct, but look at it! How much rust? Not to mention it's misshapen. This cost me money and time, held up the work and generally really pissed me off. I returned the initial part supplied on the way down to Moordale, only to discover the replacement they'd already been sent was - to put it mildly - a sub-standard 'bag-o-shite'.

As the work was being held up the only cause of action was to fabricate a custom fitment (the last pic). This does get around the problem but it has obviously cost hours. Had we been told "make your own" it would have saved me a few beers, saved lots of phone calls and prevented the a delay in progress. It was a wholey preventable situation and probably came about because someone saw an opportunity to make another 100 from a car that was being broken. I will give you the low-down if you want to hear it but I won't put that on this page as the language has already dipped, and I'm only likely to wind myself up further!