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Old 25th February 2013, 16:51   #16
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

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Originally Posted by DHABHAR.BEHRAM View Post
I get only one day in a week to work on my car, that is Sunday. So yesterday, I finished the following jobs
Ah, now that's a Sunday well spent!
Did you have some help with all the work? Maybe you should bring the Fiat to Pune as your weekday drive.

Cheers,
Rahul
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Old 25th February 2013, 17:07   #17
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

Wow. Am not a fan of the rear fins vs the earlier rounded rear.

But simply loved the immediate attention to detail in restoring the major mechanical bits to original or better condition. Felt soothing and the improvement in the vehicles reliability can only be anticipated.

Will be tracking this thread all through. The vehicle sure has some to the right owner. Both the buyer and seller should be happy with the transition. The vehicle will only see better and better days ahead.
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Old 25th February 2013, 17:59   #18
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

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Ah, now that's a Sunday well spent! Maybe you should bring the Fiat to Pune as your weekday drive.
Dear Rahul - your first quote "you can say that again", I trust you understand. I don't have to bring BMC8903 to Pune, I already have my 1967 Fiat 1100D MRF6466 and my left hand drive S1 MH01YA3238 in Pune. No time to even start them, let alone use! .

Dear ACM - thanks for your comments, this is nothing, there's still a lot of mechanical work to be done. As I have mentioned, all the major units need to go under the microscope. I also have to undo all the nonsense done by the previous guys due to the owners' ignorance! Unlike me, people have no choice, and there are a lot of "takers" out there! .

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar

Last edited by DHABHAR.BEHRAM : 25th February 2013 at 18:00. Reason: add info
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Old 25th February 2013, 18:27   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DHABHAR.BEHRAM View Post

I will try and get photographs by next week.
Congratulations Sir, as I read from the beginning, your post giving details of the car had enough information even surpassing the photographs. The next post with the photographs looked exactly the same ! BTW, have you decided on the color?

The car is indeed in good hands.

Spike

PS- Also reminds me "Confident people get what they want, others get..."

Last edited by SPIKE ARRESTOR : 25th February 2013 at 18:28.
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Old 25th February 2013, 19:31   #20
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

Hi Behram ji,

What a charming and enthralling write up of your car - the prologue and now the main story. Thanks so much for sharing. I remember coming to Dadar Parsi Colony in 1987 to meet with someone and clearly remember those roads and old era homes. What a beautiful place it was.

As for your 'brand new' vintage - this particular model has a special place in my heart. Dad had this car in the 60s - from 1965 to 1969 IIRC. There's a photo of him standing next to the black car with my Mom and Grandmom. His car was a 1961/62 model and was purchased 2nd hand in '65.

The narration of the atmosphere in DPC and your car - what a beautiful piece of history coming alive after decades. Thanks so much for sharing. Wish I could have joined to watch you do the restore on this beauty.

Have fun and congrats once again!

Cheers!
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Old 26th February 2013, 10:05   #21
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

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BTW, have you decided on the color?
Dear Pratheesh - thank you for your comments. All of us slog it out all week and then there is something to look forward to do on a Sunday. I knew that my first job was to literally "clean out" the nonsense in the engine compartment and make the engine run with some semblance of power. I knew I had to change the distributor, set the valve clearances to specifications, throw out all the high tension cables (they were a combination of Maruti 800, Santro and something else), change the intake manifold breather, engine oil etc. Next in line is the servicing. The car needs a good 4 hour pressure cleaning wash, it is very dirty underfloor! Then this carburettor must go, it is leaking precious petrol. Although it is original and priceless, I will have to painstakingly correct it before can think of putting it back. So I did what I had to do this Sunday and I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

There's still lots to do mechanically to get it to the level that it must be, so that I get good acceleration, drivability and rock solid reliability when I take it out on the highways. So much to do, no time at all, let's see how to go about. As far as major aggregate overhauling is concerned, I'll go slowly, one aggregate in one Sunday. For example, for brakes, I need to change the master cylinder, all wheel cylinders, all bundy pipes and all hoses at one go, using all Brakes India original parts. Such a job takes one full day but it will be a perfect job every time.

I am not going to do the body restoration at present although I have a combination of dark and light non-metallic grey at the back of my mind, with matching interiors.

Dear R2D2 - thank you for your comments on the car as well as on DPC. Yes, DPC was indeed charming, I remember walking to school under the shade of huge trees with my haversack, but it is all starting to slip. A couple of highrises have come up, it is not as good as before but I guess its inevitable in these times.

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar

Last edited by moralfibre : 8th March 2013 at 15:17. Reason: Fixing quote tag.
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Old 28th February 2013, 22:54   #22
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

Wow, this is fantastic!! The "Serial-Fiatwallah" is at it again!!

Lovely car, congratulations Behram, on acquiring her, and on all your persistence which has truly paid off!!

Looking forward to seeing BMC 8903 in all her finery, at the FCCCI Mumbai meet.

p.s.: My grandfather's first Fiat was BMC 8330.
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Old 2nd March 2013, 15:34   #23
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

Congratulations Behram on a fine purchase. Wish you guys many years of motoring pleasure. Please restore this one original

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Originally Posted by DHABHAR.BEHRAM View Post
Dear Sonu - to reply to your queries, the keyhole on the door is not original, it is for the "extra Godrej lock" that people used to fit at that time. The green round fasteners of the rear number plate will go shortly, they look positively ugly. This tail pipe shape has a history to it, it is almost impossible to see it on any car today. This is the original shape of the pipe with which these cars used to come from the factory in 1960. My father's car BMC9291 had it too (he sold that car in 1977). This car has got the pipe of the same shape and tapered end cut fabricated out of stainless steel. I believe this pipe is on this car from 1967. In all the years that I used to see this car in DPC, it has always been with this tail pipe only. As it is of stainless steel, nothing will ever happen to it, it will last forever. There was a guy called "Sidik" in Nana Chowk in South Mumbai who used to make complete stainless steel exhaust systems for Fiat cars in those days. Either this pipe is from Italy or it is from Sidik. It cannot be from anywhere else. If it is from Sidik, I will see a "Sidik" mark on it (just like BMC9291) when I service the car and clean the underfloor.
You know its amazing how ALL cars got that Godrej lock fitted!! I would never remove it. Its unobtrusive, and it simply looks incomplete without it. Besides the door, my car even had one installed in the dicky, strangely the key is to be inserted through the numberplate. I still have the long key, but the lock didn't survive.

My 1960 Select incidentally also had the stainless steel exhaust set up fitted to the car when I got it. In a moment of utter stupidity, I replaced it with a new set up because the previous owner told me he had it fitted in the 1960s, and I thought its time for a replacement then! I was in my late teens and didn't know any better.

I vaguely remember seeing this kind of tail pipe set up in the workshop manual - cannot confirm. Behram, if you can, can you please share a scan of the setup?

Happily enough, the hoarder in me simply couldn't throw out the old one, it still is with me, and I'll think of fitting it back when the time comes. Wonder when the time will come though!
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Old 2nd March 2013, 20:39   #24
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

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Originally Posted by karlosdeville View Post
My 1960 Select incidentally also had the stainless steel exhaust set up fitted to the car when I got it. In a moment of utter stupidity, I replaced it with a new set up because the previous owner told me he had it fitted in the 1960s, and I thought its time for a replacement then! I was in my late teens and didn't know any better.

Happily enough, the hoarder in me simply couldn't throw out the old one, it still is with me, and I'll think of fitting it back when the time comes. Wonder when the time will come though!
Aah, now I recall which other Fiat I'd seen this type of exhaust on!

Karl, now that you 'know better', fit that back on! Thats an order!
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Old 2nd March 2013, 22:44   #25
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

Congratulation Mr Behram, on this lovely acquisition. Its come to good hands
and surely it will be brought to its former glory. All the very best !
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Old 4th March 2013, 16:18   #26
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

Dear all - I am attaching some pictures of BMC8903 taken at Mumbai's famous Marine Drive yesterday. The event was the annual mega meet and drive of the Fiat Classic Car Club of India. I have also done following mechanical work on it.

I brought all my engine tune-up equipment from Pune to Mumbai and reset the dwell angle and ignition timing to specifications as I just cannot work blind! Dwell angle was found 75 degrees, set to 60 degrees as required. Ignition timing was way off specifications (don't ask, I am yet to figure out how the engine was running at all HaHaHa! ), reset to 10 degrees BTDC. The engine is running much quieter, cleaner and better now. The carburettor still needs to be changed, though. No time!
Exhaust manifold packing disintegrated, replaced.
Measured circuit resistance in the charging circuit, it was way off specifications, alternator checked for output, found completely erratic, with such nonsense in place, the diodes are expected to short out. The root cause was high electrical resistance in the additionally fitted ammeter circuit. Strangely (this is beyond me), the dynamo voltage regulator was still connected in the circuit, although it is not required to be there at all. Removed the ammeter and the voltage regulator from the system. The Lucas TVS SA15 alternator (it is from a Maruti 800) must never be used with the ammeter connected. I was expecting a 3500 rupees expense as I did not expect the alternator to work, but it worked, how I just don't know! Immediately the lights became brighter, the engine rpm increased and the general clatter went down. I wonder how the electrical system of a car can be so bad and still work!
Removed the fuel guage unit from the tank and tried to repair it, not possible because the potentiometer wires have disintegrated after 53 years in petrol and there is no float in the circuit at all! This needs to be sorted out in totality.
Clutch pedal free play found less, link was fouling to the sub-frame, adjusted to specifications, I am not satisfied, need to sort out in totality by replacing the clutch completely.

For body related changes, please see the photographs. Comments welcome of course!

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar
Attached Thumbnails
BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!-img2013030300271.jpg  

BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!-img2013030300266.jpg  

BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!-img2013030300270.jpg  

BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!-img2013030300269.jpg  


Last edited by DHABHAR.BEHRAM : 4th March 2013 at 16:34. Reason: add info
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Old 8th March 2013, 15:05   #27
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

Dear Behram Sir,

Congrats on getting this one after waiting for so long.
many of us could have given up, but you played the BAWA card here to perfection isnt it "Dingra".
A similar one sits pretty in a garage in nashik, its red in colour.
Everytime i pass through the garage road my eyes automatically get attracted to her.

Regards,
Ranjit
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Old 9th March 2013, 16:43   #28
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

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Dear Behram Sir, Congrats on getting this one after waiting for so long. Many of us could have given up, but you played the BAWA card here to perfection isnt it "Dingra". A similar one sits pretty in a garage in nashik, its red in colour. Everytime i pass through the garage road my eyes automatically get attracted to her. Regards, Ranjit
Dear Ranjit - following fiats are in Nasik / Devlali.

MRA4605, a Select with a burgandy strap running down its side, in Nasik. Cream colored.
MRX4470 (1962 model) is between Gangapur road and college road. White colored, not in much use.
MMB120 in unbelieveably pristine condition 1975 model (body shell replaced), belongs to a dear Parsi friend staying in Devlali. Burgandy red colored
BLF3330 belongs to the brother-in-law of the owner of MMB120 in a cute bungalow in Devlali. Black colored Deluxe with floor gears.
MMG6311 superbly pristine 1981 model belonged to two old Parsi sisters staying in a cute bungalow in Devlali, they gave it away to somebody. I tried very hard but could not get it. Polynesian biege colored. Done 25001 kms only when I last saw it.
MAS4875 is with a Parsi gentleman in Devlali. White colored.
MTC2410, a beautifully maintained one owner 1974 Premier President with a watch shop owner in Devlali. Grey colored.
BTF2046, a 1957 model with a Parsi wine shop owner in Devlali. Cream colored.
MAS8034, which was in Nasik, was offered to me, I did not take it, it is now in Mumbai in pristine condition. Black colored.
BLI1049, a 1957 model was with a Parsi gentleman in Devlali, he has sold it in Igatpuri. Blue colored.
MTC7363 belonging to my very dear friend Pradeep Mhaske (Anjali Driving School off Trimbak Road), now long gone. White colored with rally paint and lights.
MTJ6574, a 1956 model with the small headlights and a broken 3 slatted grille in the same area. Not in use. Cream colored.
MTC192 with a retired army colonel in Devlali. White colored.
There was one orange and white car standing in a bungalow compound off Trimbak road, I don't remember the number.
There is a dilapidated MRZ standing in a lane between Dwarka circle and Shalimar. Not in use.
There was one 1957 model with Atul Joshi in the garage off College road. Black colored.
There is a biege Padmini standing in the cross road between College road and Gangapur road.

And finally, my dear MRY3112 1964 super select is parked safely in my garage near Cidco Guest House.

How do I know all this? After the day's "madness" this was my way of relaxing in Nasik!

Take your pick! Get at least one for yourself. .

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar

Last edited by DHABHAR.BEHRAM : 9th March 2013 at 16:55. Reason: add info
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Old 10th March 2013, 17:14   #29
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

Dear Sir,

Thats a very important piece of info you are holding.. are disclosing also

And one more lies with a Parsi gentleman who stays on gangapur road, its his daily commute. He also had yezdi which he used to use it regularly since 1976.
Pradeep Mhaske i guessed had a Modified rally specs 118 NE.
Also Amol Joshi from Nashik has a beautiful maintained fiat.
Sir when will you be in nashik next time we can go for a Fiat hunting tour.

Regards,
Ranjit

Last edited by jawabiker : 10th March 2013 at 17:16.
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Old 12th March 2013, 11:33   #30
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Default Re: BMC 8903 - A 1960 Fiat Select - Here I go again!

Dear all - latest update:

Work done on the car on this Sunday:
1. Carburettor replaced, MCS1023 fitted, external vent with high float level without vacuum advance connection. Works perfectly, engine started in half crank without any choke assistance.
2. After running for some time with the new carburettor, then distributor replaced once again, unit without vacuum advance fitted. Dwell angle and ignition timing re-adjusted of course. Engine ran still better now, with lots of water coming out of the tail pipe. Works perfectly, engine starts with 10 repeat cranks without any accelerator input.
3. Intake manifold heater hoses replaced. Old hoses had to be cut to remove, they were completely brittle, worn out and choked. Original EPDM hoses are fitted.
4. Starter motor wire found in four pieces joint together, completely exposed to bare metal, replaced.

Next work:
1. Need to check the valve timing just to be sure, although the engine breathes much better now. It does not take long to open, see the correctness of the alignment marks on the crankshaft / camshaft and put it all back.
2. Exhaust system, although made in stainless steel seems to be completely choked, I will replace it next week to see the difference in power. I expect drastic improvement in performance once this is done.
3. Accelerator pedal is sticky due to incorrect position and orientation. Fulcrum parts are not original, they are worn out, therefore complete accelerator linkage needs to be replaced which includes the pedal (difficult to get the original one), its fulcrum with the holding spring, the main shaft, the return spring from the chassis and the link to the carburettor.

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar

Last edited by DHABHAR.BEHRAM : 12th March 2013 at 11:34.
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