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Buying (or not) a Daimler Conquest Century

Peter Grant
Posts: 177
Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2016 10:02 pm
Location: Sydney, Australia

Re: Buying (or not) a Daimler Conquest Century

Post by Peter Grant » Tue Jan 22, 2019 1:16 am

Hi Damian,
I have been following the thread concerning your car and can see why you would have been upset by some of the comments but then I can see that the later posts have shown some resolution.
Do you know why the oil leaked out of the engine? Sorry if i missed that but this was what caused the problem on the trip to Hungary?
I used to run an Auto Century as an everyday car between 1988 and 1995 and i loved it. Sadly the engine was very tired and would have needed a rebuild and it just wasn't worth while as the seats also needed reupholstering and it would not have been economically worthwhile. Pity, it was a great little car, I could park it in restricted spaces, it kept up with the traffic well but eventually the oil smoke became too anti social!
I sold it to a friend who had the auto transmission rebuilt but then passed it on himself to a repairer in exchange for a large service bill and it has been lost to the Club since then.
the Conquest/century range are great vehicles and while the styling may divide the ranks they have an awful lot to recommend them.
I hope that your car will be fixed and back on the road soon.
Minden jot kivanok.
Peter Grant

Damian Mills
Posts: 23
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2018 12:28 pm
Location: Keighley England

Re: Buying (or not) a Daimler Conquest Century

Post by Damian Mills » Wed Jan 23, 2019 10:13 am

Just a quick update.

Due to worsening weather conditions in Hungary, Misi's friend and his father (who has several classic cars) have had to postpone their trip to Tiszafured to look at the car until next week.

I should find out today whether another man from Budapest, who would need to sell a Sprinter van before buying Delilah, is still interested or not. He speaks no English. A Hungarian friend of mine is very generously helping with translation, but some things seem to have got mixed up and need to be clarified.

I will update on here when the potential buyers make any decisions.

In the meantime, if anyone wishes to share their experience or constructive thoughts on re-engining a Century automatic (which is not a matching numbers car and will never be a concours candidate) then I will be very interested and grateful.

At this stage, there are only two things that I have categorically ruled out for Delilah: 1) rebuilding her money pit engine, which is currently spread around my hall and my workshop here in Hungary; 2) letting her run out of MoT and rot away slowly.

Thank you very much to all of you who are following this thread.

Kind regards

Danny
(DLOC Member No. 1418-18)

grahamemmett
Posts: 520
Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:12 pm
Location: Northwich, Cheshire
Contact:

Re: Buying (or not) a Daimler Conquest Century

Post by grahamemmett » Wed Jan 23, 2019 9:39 pm

Peter Grant wrote:
Tue Jan 22, 2019 1:16 am
Do you know why the oil leaked out of the engine?
Peter Grant
Hi Peter

I was Danny's co-pilot on the drive to Hungary so let me answer for him if I may.

After buying the car, Danny asked for some information on the forum to which I responded and I agreed to help him with the car.
As it hadn't been used at all for quite some time and needed a good service so we changed all the engine oil and filter, gearbox fluid, rear axle oil. We greased all the points, adjusted the brakes, added fresh anti-freeze, Matthew Waterhouse repaired some faulty electrics including the horn. Danny had a new Dynator fitted (this is an alternator in a dynamo body - very effective) and 5 new tyres.

With all this done we set off for Hungary.
The first day in the UK we were taking things very gingerly as we got to know the car. On the morning of second day we checked all the fluids and we had used no oil or water in the 250km we'd already covered. During the second day we grew in confidence and through Germany and the car was comfortable cruising at 100kph and 120kph to overtake. However later that day, after about 400km and on the autobahn north of Frankfurt, the big ends 'went' very suddenly. We'd had no prior indication of a problem. On investigating we found the sump was empty of oil. This was very puzzling as we'd used none the day before and we'd not been burning oil - no oil smoke behind us or smell. We abandoned the trip, I flew back to England and Danny had the car transported to Hungary (eventually - but that's another story).

We have had a collective discussion here about what could have happened to the engine and the most reasonable explanation we can offer is this:
The car had been used very little in the last 5 years and in this time the crankshaft oil seal had likely deteriorated. During short trips and driving on local roads at low speeds, this wasn't a problem.
We think the engine probably had some piston ring wear and so combustion gases were getting past the pistons and pressuring the crankcase. This pressure was then looking to escape and although he breather was clear, another easy way out was the crankshaft oil seal. At that speed the oil in the crankcase is a mist and so the pressure drove this oily mist out past the failing seal until there was no oil left.
When back in Hungary, Danny had the engine taken out and the engineer told Danny that the underside around the gearbox was covered in oil and that matches our theory.
If we'd checked the oil when we stopped for lunch we may have averted the calamity but as it had used none the previous day and was running sweetly, we didn't. A great shame but something we hadn't foreseen.
Graham Emmett
Northwich, Cheshire
Joint DB18 Registrar (with Marcel Renshaw)
DB18 1949 LCV522 (Yes that one with the P100s)
https://www.db18.org

Damian Mills
Posts: 23
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2018 12:28 pm
Location: Keighley England

Re: Buying (or not) a Daimler Conquest Century

Post by Damian Mills » Thu Jan 24, 2019 8:39 am

Many thanks Graham

I know you have a lot on, and I greatly appreciate your explaining the engine/oil problem far better than I could.

Cheers

Danny

bakergh
Posts: 58
Joined: Wed Feb 24, 2016 1:57 pm
Location: New Forest, Hampshire

Re: Buying (or not) a Daimler Conquest Century

Post by bakergh » Fri Jan 25, 2019 11:33 am

Hi Danny

If it helps I have a used automatic crankshaft and bearing shells to match. It was removed from a low mileage engine which had been left standing and had seized.It has been stored for some years but the bearing surfaces are still good. My thought was if you bought a preselect engine then changing the crankshaft should be all it needs to fit your car.

All the best
Graham

bakergh
Posts: 58
Joined: Wed Feb 24, 2016 1:57 pm
Location: New Forest, Hampshire

Re: Buying (or not) a Daimler Conquest Century

Post by bakergh » Fri Jan 25, 2019 1:36 pm

I have just seen a automatic Century being broken for spares on Ebay. It appears to still have its engine so may be another route for you to explore.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Daimler-Conq ... rk:21:pf:0

Graham

grahamemmett
Posts: 520
Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:12 pm
Location: Northwich, Cheshire
Contact:

Re: Buying (or not) a Daimler Conquest Century

Post by grahamemmett » Fri Jan 25, 2019 7:21 pm

Both good options to investigate.
Graham Emmett
Northwich, Cheshire
Joint DB18 Registrar (with Marcel Renshaw)
DB18 1949 LCV522 (Yes that one with the P100s)
https://www.db18.org

HenryC
Posts: 141
Joined: Mon Feb 15, 2016 8:31 pm
Location: Surrey / East Hampshire

Re: Buying (or not) a Daimler Conquest Century

Post by HenryC » Sun Jan 27, 2019 9:43 pm

Hi,
I've been to see that Automatic Daimler - its in a rough scrapyard. I wanted some parts from it and left him my contact details. The engine obviously hasn't run for years.

He tells me he wants to banger race it after ripping out the engine and gear box. But I also suspect he says this to encourage someone to buy it for an inflated price in order to save it! Its very rotten and the windscreen is now smashed so it'll be getting very wet.

Needless to say I haven't heard back from him - a bit of a daydreaming cowboy i feel.
Cheers, Henry

EL24
Conquest (Drop Head) Coupe DJ252
MGB 8-)

grahamemmett
Posts: 520
Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:12 pm
Location: Northwich, Cheshire
Contact:

Re: Buying (or not) a Daimler Conquest Century

Post by grahamemmett » Sun Jan 27, 2019 9:54 pm

Ah right Henry, it’s not worth any effort in that case.

Regards
Graham Emmett
Northwich, Cheshire
Joint DB18 Registrar (with Marcel Renshaw)
DB18 1949 LCV522 (Yes that one with the P100s)
https://www.db18.org

Damian Mills
Posts: 23
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2018 12:28 pm
Location: Keighley England

Re: Buying (or not) a Daimler Conquest Century

Post by Damian Mills » Sun Jan 27, 2019 10:32 pm

Thanks Grahams and Henry for your help and advice

I tried to post a reply earlier - I entered "Submit" - but it seemed to disappear. Since then I've seen Graham E's reply, I agree.

Misi's friend, Gabor, and his father are determined to get to Tiszafured on Thursday to look at Delilah. I hope they will decide to give her a good home.

Another Hungarian man has said that he definitely wants to buy Delilah. He says taht rebuilding the engine is no problem for his mechanic friend. The problem is that he needs to sell a Mercedes Sprinter van before he can do so, and I have no idea if and when he can do that. He will contact me if he sells the Sprinter.

If Gabor's father doesn't decide to buy Delilah then I will need some advice on changing engines, starting with changing crankshafts on Conquest engines.

Whatever happens, I will post an update on here.

Kind regards

Danny
(DLOC Member No. 1418-18)

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