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How to find and restore your very own piece of motoring history.

Updated on October 16, 2012

Project: Mini Restoration.

I must be off my head. My youngest son is determined to buy and restore an Austin Mini as his first car. Some of you may say, 'good for you', Lee. Others may say, you must be joking. Me, I say let's go for it. Having just started a new job where I work, I find myself having to get up for work even earlier than before.

Ok, Steve, I hear you say, what has that got to do with buying an Austin Mini for your son. Well he still needs to learn to drive, I will need a second car as the wife doesn't want to be taking me to work at 4:30am so the plan is to buy a wrecker. We will then take the summer months to restore it whilst I use it daily until Lee passes his test. When he needs it full time I will purchase another one and so on.If we get good at restoring we may even have a little sideline going not only for the summer but something to do over the winter months also.

Combine this with the article writing, blogging and 65 hours a week at work and hey presto, poshcoffeeco branches out into article writing/blogging about our escapades with the Mini's.Not bad thinking eh? Well for the moment anyway it is something to be thinking about.

This beats my original idea of buying a moped to go to work on during the summer.At least a little Mini has a roof so I won't get wet!As well as this, there may well be a website or two and blog in it.Would be great if we can make a few quid to boot.££££££££££££££££££££££££££££ What I would suggest you do is keep your eyes open for the second hub in this Austin Mini series after we have purchased our project.

Then you will be able to follow our progress to completion. This hub is just an introduction and to whet your appetite for what is to come over the summer months.

A British Style Icon

The Austin Mini was designed in 1959 by a designer called Alec Issigonis who had previously designed the Morris Minor. The Austin Mini was the first British car ever to sell 1million units.

By the end of it's production run this little car had sold 5.5million units. The Mini was the darling of the British car industry for many many years.


Austin Mini, make it roadworthy?

Before we buy our little Austin Mini we will have to make sure it has a good long M.O.T

That way we will be sure that we can run it whilst we work to improve the general look of the car. Failing that we may have to settle for one which may need a few quick fixes.

The bonus is that I only live a short distance from my place of work and if necessary don't need to go on any major roads.

Top tip -: If you buy a car and you think you may be able to sell it for a quick turn around, simply washing and valeting can be all it needs to put back on sale. Many people and garages as well do not always see the potential in a shabby looking car. Give the body a bit of TLC and you just might be surprised how much value you can add.

This will not be the case with our Austin Mini. If we can find a banger to get us from A to B we will be more than happy.

Austin Mini, where to find one.

There are a number of outlets we can use to find the ideal Austin Mini.

As you can imagine the internet will form the first part of our search.

To start also it might be a case of trawling through the local free ads and Auto magazines. I also have this dream that somewhere there is a low mileage Austin Mini holed up in a barn or garage somewhere which has long been forgotten about and the one owner will be prepared to part with it for a song. I know I am dreaming, but you just never know what is out there until you begin the search.

Austin Mini, assessing the project.

Once we have purchased our Austin Mini it will be time to work out what we will do with it first.

I am sure it won't be a simple task to find the right vehicle. I am hoping at this stage that there will be a model out there for sale which has been part restored and is in a roadworthy state ready for daily use.

That way it can be a steady progression to turn the car into clean example and as close to the original showroom condition as possible and without spending a fortune doing it.

No doubt it will be a case of making a list of priority jobs according to the nature of the problem. Safety first - which means brakes, steering and bodywork will be major areas to focus on as a minimum.

Early models are prone to rust so depending how old the vehicle is will determine how much of a necessity it will be to attack the bodywork problems.

Come along for the ride.

Come with us on a ride to find the perfect Austin Mini at the right price and in the best possible condition we can find.

We will report as soon as we find our project and will then start publishing our progress in future hubs on the subject. It could be a very fruitful summer and so long as we can find the right vehicle, an enjoyable one as well.


Submit a Comment

  • poshcoffeeco profile imageAUTHOR

    Steve Mitchell 

    6 years ago from Cambridgeshire

    Glad you like Christy.

  • ChristyWrites profile image

    Christy Birmingham 

    6 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

    The Austin mini is classic! Well explained here Steve.

  • poshcoffeeco profile imageAUTHOR

    Steve Mitchell 

    6 years ago from Cambridgeshire

    skymaster, so glad you liked it and thanks for visiting and taking the time to comment. I really do appreciate it.

  • profile image


    6 years ago

    really really nice...

  • poshcoffeeco profile imageAUTHOR

    Steve Mitchell 

    6 years ago from Cambridgeshire



    Your comments are appreciated and I am pleased that you enjoyed this hub.

  • htodd profile image


    6 years ago from United States

    Wow..The videos are great..Thanks a lot

  • Zakmoonbeam profile image

    Michael Murchie 

    6 years ago from Parts Unknown

    Loved the article, I have owned 4 Minis over the years, and spent more time and skinned knuckles keeping them going than I care to remember, but what a learning experience owning one is!!

    Reading this has made me nostalgic, but since moving to Sweden, I have only seen 1 in 3 years... Oh well, will have to keep a look out for a minter, or perhaps a rusty restoration project, thanks for a great read anyway.

  • poshcoffeeco profile imageAUTHOR

    Steve Mitchell 

    6 years ago from Cambridgeshire

    tirelesstraveler, I rest my case. Bet I would look really silly cramped in the cockpit.Even sillier in a Mini, but they are both such cool cars.

  • tirelesstraveler profile image

    Judy Specht 

    6 years ago from California

    Lol my oldest is 6ft 4" he and his best friend (of like size) drove the car around the block when we first got it. Between the two of them the doors barely shut. The kid who likes to drive the beast is 6ft 2" and skinny.

  • poshcoffeeco profile imageAUTHOR

    Steve Mitchell 

    6 years ago from Cambridgeshire

    Jack White, many thanks for the comment and taking the time to read my article.

    tirelesstraveler, I would love an MG, but would struggle to drive it as I am 6ft 2'' tall. Mind you I will probably be the same with a Mini!! Thanks for reading and commenting.

  • tirelesstraveler profile image

    Judy Specht 

    6 years ago from California

    Good luck posh, We have an MG midget for sale. Twas my husbands dream car in 1975. When he purchased it 30 years later none of the kids wanted to work on it with him. When the youngest came of age and wanted to work on it husband had lost interest.

  • Jack White profile image

    Jack White 

    6 years ago from Ormeau Road, Belfast, Ireland

    Excellent hub!

    I was formerly the proud owner of a Mini Clubman.

  • poshcoffeeco profile imageAUTHOR

    Steve Mitchell 

    6 years ago from Cambridgeshire

    Hey Daisy M thanks for taking the time to read and comment. I hope there will be more to share in the Summer when we get the project going.

  • Daisy Mariposa profile image

    Daisy Mariposa 

    6 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)


    Thanks for publishing this article. I enjoy reading Hubs that have an ongoing story. I look forward to the next installment.

  • poshcoffeeco profile imageAUTHOR

    Steve Mitchell 

    6 years ago from Cambridgeshire

    dilipchandra, I am glad you like this. Thanks for the vote. Hope you will follow the progress when I find the ideal Mini and begin it's restoration.

  • dilipchandra12 profile image

    Dilip Chandra 

    6 years ago from India

    Nice hub, good work. Well written, VOTED UP :)


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