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  Morris Minor Traveller

Morris Minor Traveller
EngineIn-line four-cylinder
Displacement, bore * stroke
Compression ratio
Engine controlSV
Drive trainFront engine, rear drive
TransmissionManual four-speed
Front suspensionDouble wishbone
Rear suspensionRigid axle, leaf springs
Brakes f/rDrums, hydraulically operated
Wheelbase2.185 mm
Length3.780 mm
Width1.550 mm
Height1.540 mm
Kerb weight800 kg + driver
Top speed
Year of manufacture1948 - 1972

The Morris Minor, which means something like 'the smaller one' is regarded as the VW Beetle of England. We are dealing here with a particular variant, the 'Traveller'. The front half fully corresponds to the saloon, while the rear end is designed completely different. Only the undercarriage (of the Morris Oxford) was taken over together with the technique.

Alec Issigonis, now known rather to us as the creator of the Mini, responsible as head of design also for this previous Morris. 'Frame' you can actually not name the wooden part rear because the chassis indeed is still made of steel. But undoubtedly it is the framework for the rear side parts with sliding windows, the roof and the two rear doors.

The British affectionately call him 'Moggie' (ordinary cat), the Americans 'Woody'. It is manufactured with a side-valve engine under 1000 cc, allowing it not even 100 km/h. Over time it developed. And also the engines have been a bit more modern and stronger. A total of 1.3 million Minor were produced until 1972.

Naturally, the wooden frame back is first of all focal point of restoration. He's with the aluminum sheets completely demountable, once you ignore the roof fixed with nails and terminal strip. Namely it is not so easy to re-attach in the original kind without the consequences of leakage or settlement cracks of the bar.

The carpenter work on the car involve a lot of problems, while the procurement of deposited ash wood is likely to be the easiest. In England, there should be still carpenters who can make a new carcassing from original templates. Striking here are the large arches over the rear wheels which are assembled from several parts.

The fitting problem in the restoration is the one problem, the durability without much warping the other. Then there is the question of whether one oil-impregnates the new wood or paint it three times e.g. with yacht varnish. Because the frame is sealed together with its metal sheets only against moisture towards the interior. But it may well water and dirt penetrate between wood and sheet metal and remain.

The disadvantages of the wood construction are fairly large clearances but which then e.g. at the two rear doors may not be enough however over a longer period. This means jamming doors, rework and new paint. Also and especially the sliding windows are affected. Wood works and is unsuitable as a body material.

Imagine only two types of rear crashes. The more severe of the two makes a ride in the Traveller a dangerous event because any absorption of impact energy can be forgotten at wood. But even the less severe crash is bad, namely because so the vehicle can be destroyed up to a total loss. What remains is probably the enduring popularity of such cars and in England, the receipt and help. 05/13               Top of page               Index
2001-2015 Copyright programs, texts, animations, pictures: H. Huppertz - E-Mail
Translator: Don Leslie - Email:

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