Rover SD1 : a car with the right profile

Mike Humble is never tyred of working on a classic motoring icon, only a few more details and the mission is complete. 

As shown in a previous blog from Keith - The spare, older than time itself, needed to be used!

Well, the Poliski-Rover has come a long way since I first clapped eyes on her – seriously horrific electric maladies and some challenging issues with fueling, cooling and miscellaneous matters arising from a long period of layover are now a fading memory. I’m also pleased to say it’s not cost that much to sort. It’s been more about fettling than throwing money at it. 

You may recall, from one of Keith’s previous blogs, that he found one of his new tyres flat one morning and so the original 1976 Michelin XAS spare tyre had to be fitted. Upon further investigation, that turned out to be nothing more than a slight seal problem on the rim and a faulty valve. My trusted boot boys at REVS in Horsham soon diagnosed the problem and had the tyre repaired quicker than the SD1 can swill a gallon of petrol – yes really, they were that quick! 

You simply wouldn’t believe how pleased I am to have the spare wheel being back in the boot. The width and profile of the spare were different to the brilliant Sava “boots” that Keith had fitted at Tyres Northampton. The overall feel of the car was frightening, it was pulling to the left quite strongly, made the car sit like it had a broken spring and the grip offered from the 35 year old tyre equalled that of trying to hold on to a greased Pole Cat. A hair raising moment on a wet A24 when some old womble in a Ford KA(ck) changed lanes with no observation and caused me to give a damn good prod on the Rover’s anchors confirmed this. 

The wonky gear lever retaining cap has been temporarily repaired using an over-sized washer and my MIG welder but, alas, this is only a temporary lash and so, as mentioned in a previous muttering, if anyone has one going spare, please get in touch. The pre-MOT check is coming along – items noticed include a faulty hazard warning switch, a weeping front damper and below par handbrake on the nearside rear. 

The fractured retaining cap - Not a pretty repair, but sufficient for the time being

Anyway, once I have had the rear drums off and the courier has delivered a massive and heavy cardboard box full of metally things, more hammering and swearing will ensue ending with a trip to the testing station. 

However, in the meantime, I’m off out in the old girl to make Shell some more profit!

Mike Humble


  1. I have followed the restoration avidly from the start and, having fond childhood memories – and stories – of my Dad’s almost identical SD1, it really is a delight to see OEG almost complete and looking superb in its original state – Mann Egerton sticker and all!

    It’s also an increasingly rare pleasure to see people who won’t rest until the job is properly finished – well done, Keith and Mike.

    All we need now is for Mister Adams to sign a sworn affidavit that he will banish all thoughts of LPG conversions from his head and I’ll be a really happy boy…

  2. Yikes, a 35 year old spare. I’d get that changed before needing used again, there was a bloke last year killed in his MGB when the old stock spare he fitted exploded on a motorway, despite never being used previously. Rubber degrades regardless of how it is stored, and ten years is the recommended maximum life for a tyre.

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