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Old 26th March 2010, 11:03   #1
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Cool The Story of my Amby

Hi All

Just wanted to share with you all in about my Amby. I've just boarded Team-BHP and I thought this story about my Amby would interest you people.

To start off, it is a 1964 Mark II which was bought by my Grand Father in 1966. It was registered in my Dad's name and he was the 3rd owner at that time.

The car then served its purpose very well without any problems what so ever. I've heard some very interesting experiences of our family with this car. I've used the word 'heard' just because the car was bought about 19 years before I was born.

Since my early childhood days, I was very fond of this car and it was almost like a member in our family.

It was in 92 that the car really showed its age and broke down near Bhavani while traveling back to Coimbatore from Bangalore.

All these years from 1964 to 1992 it has been serving on the original OHV petrol motor and was flawless. Investigations after the break-down revealed that the engine main bearing had cracked and hence had to get the car towed back to Coimbatore to attend to it.

This is where the problem really started. Now since the engine had almost come to the end of its life, we started to think of converting it to Diesel.

Everyone at home were totally against putting in the Matador since it was too noisy and we really had no other choice since Isuzuís were never heard or available at that time. At the same time, some people who had started a new workshop especially to convert Ambassadors into Diesel using the 1.9 TATA engine were really getting famous and hence we too thought about it and finally after much thought, it was decided that our Amby had do undergo a major transformation to bear the 1.9 TATA diesel heart borrowed from the TATA Sierra.

So, the work started and the Amby was installed with a brand new 1.9 TATA motor. The engine came at a whopping Rs. 75,000. This engine was mated to the same HM petrol gear box with column shift.

So after staying in the workshop for quite a while for the conversion process then for the AC, the car finally arrived.

The engine was really silent and powerful for the Amby.

Now, the car was back to normal but slowly and steadily problems seemed to arise one after another.

Some of the problems were:
1. Engine Over heating.
2. Uneven tire wear.
3. Clutch wearing out pretty quickly.
4. Low ground clearance.

The ground clearance was fixed pretty quickly by chopping off the oil sump. The original was with a capacity of 7litres and was now chopped off to a capacity of about 4 to 4.5litres.

Though we had installed an extra fan on the grille the overheating was always a case to be worried about especially on ghat sections. Modifications to the radiator and others lead to marginal improvement but was never solved.

The chassis was changed during the engine conversion and since then the front tires never lasted more than 25,000 kms. Also, after this conversion the weight of the car increased by about 100 kgs than it was with the petrol motor.

Coming to the clutch, it was a niggling problem and never got settled. By this time, few years had passed and the car had run more that 70,000 kms despite these issues. Now, some friend of my uncle had also converted to the same TATA engine but with a TATA gearbox borrowed from the Sumo. They had covered more than 90,000 kms and had decided to get rid of the engine and gearbox due to the arrival of the ISUZU engines in the market and they offered us the TATA Gearbox which we readily accepted.

Now, it was Transformation part II for our Amby. So out went the column shift HM gearbox and in came the Sumo box along with a hydraulic clutch. Changes were also made to the interior with a new dashboard with a console box and the car also made its way to Koyas for new Upholstery.

So after these changes, the car was back to duty serving tirelessly and at the same time frequenting to the workshop for some problem or the other and expenses were mounting and by this time my dad was almost fed-up with the expenses and they decided to sell off the car.

I was heart broken. I was asking him and others at home not to sell it off but my request was turned down and finally the car was sold in 2002 and was replaced with a Palio 1.2 Sport.

I was in Class XI at that time but was never happy about the car being sold though I was madly in love with the Palio.

It has been 8 years since the car was sold but I was never able to get it out of my mind and was always thinking of somehow buying it back and know what? It has happened! Yes, I've just bought back the same car just a couple of days back, on the 15th of March 2010.

The car is still running on the same engine and nothing much has changed mechanically. The buyers had corrected the tire wear problem by correcting the chaises and also the overheating, but the gearbox and the body are out of shape.

So, I've achieved in buying back the car but now I need to get it back into proper shape.

Hope this post has not wasted your time. I will update this thread in due course of my rebuilding process if you people are interested.

Eagerly awaiting your response or comments.
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Old 26th March 2010, 11:27   #2
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Looks like a lovers are united back again after several years & its time to plan for marriage. So what're you plans to restore? Are you planning to plonk the same petrol engine & give the vintage look or still give the vintage look with modern MPFI engine?
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Old 26th March 2010, 11:42   #3
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Hi H4 Welcome aboard! Another enthusiast by birth! aha good to know this. As a good old saying " birds of same feather flock together" here we are the birds and TEAM BHP is where we flock together. Ha ha.

Very interesting story and its similar to my story (1964 vespa) dad sold it inspite of my unwillingness, though I found the scooter back but unfortunately the damage wad already done to it, handle bar changed to a latest one, body modified etc. So then decided to have one similar to my dad's scooter and searched for 4 yrs and found one and its still with me for the past 6 yrs.

Its a common trail with many other beauties (cars/bikes) what your car has gone through (engine transformation and side effects relating to it),I feel had it been Matador engine though noisy she would not had the other issues, but one good thing happening here is YOU to her I'm sure she will be back to the original status (are you planning to have petrol engine and all original fitments) as its not too late to fix a Amby mark II back to the original state. I can help you if you need any as here in HYD we can still source parts for her.

Can you post some pictures of you car in current state (interior, exterior, engine bay).

You can be rest assured in regards to restoration if you are planning in near future, we have ANJAN sir and few other who can guide you the best way out with their refined experiences. There are few threads which are very active Ambassdor Mark II 1970-restoration for your help. So here we are the TEAM BHPians with you my friend. Go ahead. all the best.

Last edited by chanu : 26th March 2010 at 11:47.
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Old 26th March 2010, 11:52   #4
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Smile Some pictures

Clicked in 1988 when I was about 3 years old. Its me seated on the car.



Clicked in 2002 before the car was sold



And now in 2010 after buying it back

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Old 26th March 2010, 12:05   #5
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Good, Good!! the car has not changed much in regards to external look, still has all what is required, is the colour changed. The front grille has it been cut to have the fan fixed? if so then you need to search for a grille if you plans are to have the original petrol engine and have the car restored.

Inside the car pictures please.

I am offered a MarkII which is still there and the seller claims that to be all original vehicle with petrol engine, need to check this weekend.
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Old 26th March 2010, 12:13   #6
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Exclamation present plans

Thanks a lot aargee & chanu for your comments.

Planning to stick with the same engine for the time. Need to get the body and interiors back in shape. Also the previous owner had done an overhaul of the engine and is in good shape. No visible smoke what so ever.

Also, I need to keep the cars documents proper and hence I believe it is wiser to stick to Diesel as the book is endorsed with diesel conversion for this TATA motor, thought I would love to plonk in the Isuzu petrol.

Anyway, not looking at changing the engine as of now. I'm planning to retain all possible original fittings in the exterior while maintaining the interior as it is now.

To be frank, the car looks better in the current picture than it actually is.

The problems to be fixed in it are:
1. AC needs to be checked as the previous owner says that he never used the aircon over few years and is now out of Gas

2. Gearbox is noisy and produces a lot of humming and hence needs to be replaced or repaired. (Will replace it as Sierra or Sumo gearboxes are easily available and will be a direct fit in the current setup).

3. Some major patches are present and hence requires tinkering and painting.

4. The color of the upholstery has changed. Hope that it can be restored by cleaning.

Gearbox and the body are the major tasks in hand.
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Old 26th March 2010, 12:20   #7
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Post some more pictures in the present state

Chanu, the previous owner had repainted and hence the color had changed.



Engine Bay



The Interiors







The roof on the inside




Note from Team-BHP Support : Please note that it is imperative for you to upload pictures directly to the Team-BHP Server. Click here to view our simple help article on uploading pictures. Thanks.

Last edited by Rehaan : 9th May 2010 at 12:57. Reason: Please see the note that has been put at the end of your post by the Support Team.
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Old 26th March 2010, 20:05   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chanu View Post
I can help you if you need any as here in HYD we can still source parts for her.
Hi Chanu. Thanks for coming forward to help me with parts. I'm on the lookout for tail lamp lenses, front parking lamp lenses, the Mark II emblem and also the aluminum beading which we append to the windshield beading and also for the rear glass rubber beading's.

It would be great if you can help me in getting those.
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Old 26th March 2010, 20:52   #9
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Nice. My fav classic in my favourite colour.

I suggest you put an Isuzu petrol in it to regain its charm.

The Tata engine has a good demand for Sumos and you can probably end up with a profit at the end of it.
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Old 26th March 2010, 22:42   #10
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As I said I sure would love to all who love these cars/bikes whichever possible way. I will definately find the parts you've asked for H4 I guess I've seen the lens with one guy at the scrap yard. I am not sure the brand he has. Let me confirm.

I agree with what you say restoring the exteriors first, for various reasons having the SUMO engine inside and plans for having sierra gearbox but having said this, you should accept the fact you are not going to have a COMPLETE car rather an original car. Not a problem it can be brought to one however keep storing original parts/engine/accessories for future plans.

Till then keep enjoy driving and have a safe motoring.
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Old 26th March 2010, 22:46   #11
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Hi H14,

Glad to see one more Amby Mark II thread. Nice writeup too.

Am going to eagerly follow this one. Keep posting.

Regards,
Sanat
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Old 7th May 2010, 12:39   #12
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Hope my question is not out of the blue, but i wanted to know about the performance characteristic of this tata engine in amby. Fuel effeciency, what speeds you drive etc.
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Old 7th May 2010, 13:06   #13
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Waiting to see this project coming through.
Quote:
Originally Posted by h14 View Post
aluminum beading which we append to the windshield beading and also for the rear glass rubber beading's.
Take utmost care here. Those aluminium beadings are difficult to place usually. Also there are not too many people who can handle them properly in today's context. Uneven gapping leads to water leakage. Please keep this in mind.
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Old 8th May 2010, 22:25   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ramzsys View Post
Hope my question is not out of the blue, but i wanted to know about the performance characteristic of this tata engine in amby. Fuel effeciency, what speeds you drive etc.
Hi ramzsys. The engine is pretty good for the amby. It delivers about 16-17 kmpl on the highway with the aircon with speeds hovering around 90-100. Top speed managed is 130 kmph.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudra Sen View Post
Waiting to see this project coming through.
Take utmost care here. Those aluminium beadings are difficult to place usually. Also there are not too many people who can handle them properly in today's context. Uneven gapping leads to water leakage. Please keep this in mind.
Sure, Rudra Sen. Will keep in mind. Thx. But i guess this aluminum beading is tough to come-by.
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Old 8th May 2010, 23:31   #15
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H14, Lovely.. That is some ride never sell it. Need help ping me. Grew up with one and its the only set of wheels i miss till date lol
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