Sunday, July 25, 2010

The bonnet on Nagari number 1

With all of this discussion on Nagari power bulges, you may have noticed Peter G's comment a few days ago about the scoop on B8/001. To recap, he mentioned that it used the early narrow scoop turned the other way in the style of the Mark 7. Below is the famous release photograph showing a completely flat bonnet, something I, personally, aspire to, using fuel injection in the future. We all know that in order to lock that flat bonnet down they needed to remove the carby so the car wasn't running when the photos were taken. The first official public showing was in January 1970 at the newly opened Doncaster Shopping Town as part of a plastics expo. That was a static display too. Pete recalls seeing it as a 13 y.o. I remember it too just prior to my getting married. Gawd, I must be old.The February 1970 photos in SCW were the first shown with the car under its own power and there was the back to front scoop. The September 1969 SCW article showed the car with the flat bonnet.Below is a page from the February 1970 Motor Manual showing the same car. Well, it had to be - it was the only mobile Nagari at that stage.Here's a picture from Bolwell's archives showing the car on the road, date unknown (well, to me anyway).Finally, here's an excerpt from Pedr Davis' 1979 Australians on the Road. As you can see the colour has changed from white to yellow and it has also acquired a set of wind-up windows.I do remember the car being traded in on a Cortina some years later at a Paramatta Road car yard. Does anybody know where it is now?


Graeme said...

“Does anybody know where it is now?"

Yes! I bought it from Sports Car World at Concorde in November 1975. It was really rough and shouldn't have been allowed to be driven on the road. I did some basic maintenance on it, but drove it only occasionally. Everyday car was a Cooper S which was more fun in the traffic. In 1992 I took it off the road for major work. However soon after this wife, house and kids came along, so it sat neglected in my parents garage for another 17 years. Following the deaths of my parents, the house was sold and the Nagari trailored over to my place last year.

What now? I still think about finishing the job, but unfortunately the enthusiasm for working on cars is no longer there, so it guess it will eventually be sold. Mind you it is a bit of a talking point for visitors - it contrasts somewhat with the Prado it shares the garage with.

I am happy to try and answer any questions on this car.


John L said...

Wow! What a discovery! OK Graeme, question one - is it yellow?

Anonymous said...

Graeme, I have photographs of your car, circa 1976, it was painted Yellow with Gold on front and rear pannels, it carried the Reg. No. KAW 362, has it changed much since then?
It would be great to get your car along to Eastern Creek on August 22nd. for Shannons Eastern Creek Classic, the Bolwell CC of NSW are celebrating the 40th Anniversary of the Original Nagari, as your car is No.1 it would be fantastic to have it on display, no matter what it's current condition, I'm assuming that you live in Sydney.
Contact me at:

John L said...

Are you sure about the 1976 bit, Peter? I had been told in 1974 that it had gone to Sydney and that it had gone into a Sydney car yard in 1974. Graeme bought it in late 1975.

Anonymous said...

I'm only going by the year refered to on the photos, it didn't look like it was in a car yard, probably just parked on a suburban street.

John L said...

Poor old Graeme has been having trouble posting comments. I've heard this before, so if anyone's got any helpful tips let's hear them. Anyway, here's some of what he had to say:-
"The other night was the first time I've ever looked at any motor related blog. Fortuitous timing to say the least! Unfortunately after the first reply I now cannot get past the 'Word Verification' thing, despite trying for an hour or so on three separate occasions. Why do they make it so difficult? It's not like we are operating bank accounts here.
Starting from the original...........
White with black nose and rear panel, yellow etc, green etc, metallic gold with coppery brown nose and rear panel when I bought it. I've since sprayed it all white. Thought about going to the original blacks, but personnally prefer the one colour.
While on the exterior, it didn't have the steelies shown in the photos, but had alloy/steel two piece wheels. As I saw some later Nagaris with all alloy wheels of the identical style, I always wondered if mine were the prototypes."

John L said...

I like the all one colour too, I guess it's just a matter of taste.
The Nagari wheels are quite distinctive. They began with the alloy /steel combination and when they decided they were a bit heavy switched to the one piece casting. I don't know how long they persevered with the 2 piece but Garry Warren's car which is about chassis number 37 had them until he was able to find a set of the later ones. I haven't experienced it myself but some people have had problems with the later wheels being porous.

Graeme said...

Success at last.

Peter - KAW362 was correct, so I guess it was at some point yellow with a gold nose, though that does seem a weird paint scheme. The colours I’ve listed are what I saw on the very small single areas on each of the body and nose that I rubbed back to white. There could have been other colours that were already removed from those areas. One thing for certain, your photos have to be pre November ‘75. Unfortunately it is not practical for the car to go to Eastern Creek.

At this point I should admit that I never knew that much about Bolwells in general. I made some enquiries about joining the (NSW?) Bolwell club sometime in the ‘80s but was told it no longer operated. I figured I was pretty much on my own from then on.

Bonnet scoops, plus intakes. With the car temporarily off the road (brakes), I did what turned out to be a really dumb thing and lent the 4V manifold and carby (was mine the only one to be XT GT based?) to an ‘acquaintance’ for him to try out on his car. The recipient Falcon was supposedly stolen, never to be recovered. I then obtained a 2V manifold and carb for nix as a temporary fix to get the car back on the road. As I assume everyone knows, the scoop on my car was rubber gasketed to the carby inlet, with only a very course screen to stop rocks bigger than about half an inch entering the intake. As the gasket didn’t match the 2V carb, I removed the inner part, ie. the part supporting the thick gasket, of the scoop. As I had eventually intended to do this anyway to fit a ‘better than nothing’ foam filter, this was no great loss. With the 2V manifold on 4V heads and the reversed exhaust manifolds, volumetric efficiency would not have been high! Never got around to sorting this out.