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Topics - Glen Smytheman

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Hi all,

I had a spare Ace Bristol non overdrive gearbox that we have fitted to an early Type 401 Bristol saloon.  In test drives the car goes very well (spare BS head has also been fitted that would have raced in the New Zealand Grand Prix back in the 1950's that my dad had under the bench in garage for the last 40 years) but is a bit of a challenge to get underway due to gearing.

My questions are therefore is anyone able to tell me:
1.   The gear ratios for the gears as fitted to a standard BWCR12 gearbox
2.   The Bristol part numbers for each of the gears fitted to a BWCR12 gearbox.
3.   Whether the gears are interchangeable from a Bristol saloon 403 gearbox (BWCR5) into a BWCR12 gearbox

Many thanks

Glen Smytheman

General Forum / Scale Cobra for an 11 Year old AC Enthusiast
« on: November 23, 2020, 08:03:05 »
Hi all and Greetings from New Zealand - summer is finally coming down under after a long winter and two lockdowns - I intend putting some serious miles on my Ace this summer and my thoughts are with other AC owners elsewhere in the world at this time.

We have an AC Ace Bristol and a number of Bristol saloons in our family and as a result my 11 year old son is dead set on a getting a himself a scale kids size Cobra.  He is very keen and pretty capable – he assisted removing Bristol 2 litre engine from a type 401 saloon at age 8 and is now helping reinstall the engine and box now it is finally reconditioned – kids with this level of enthusiasm should be encouraged and we are keen to get him some experience behind the wheel of a small Cobra as he is already making noises on wanting to drive the other AC in our household…..

We have found ¾ scale bodies for sale on Alibaba as per this link – and were looking to mount the body on a chassis (enlarged go cart or similar) – exact detail is not required as I expect that is will be raced rallied (but hopefully not rolled!)

I am willing to be that there are others in the ACOC that have looked at building scale Cobra’s for kids and would be interested to see what has been completed already.  Any information greatly appreciated and on the off chance that anyone from NZ is reading this and has a "kids cobra" that has been outgrown that could be for sale please get in touch.

Thanks all

Glen Smytheman

Hi all from New Zealand.  I am doing some work on my Ace Bristol prior to a planned 3500km Road trip over Easter (Auckland to Wanaka in South Island for Warbirds over Wanaka Air show and back) and hit a bit of a snag yesterday. Yesterday I finally got around to fitting a set of new rear Spax shocks which I had purchased some years ago only to find that 4x front shocks had been dispatched down to the colonies............. Brian Eacott has come back saying that Spax may make to order so there may be some waiting time.  I will call Spax Monday but wanted to see if by any chance:

A) There was anyone that has a new set of new rear Spax shocks in stock ready to airmail (anywhere in the world fine).  Reference is G623 in spax catalogue or Brian Eacott says G623EA.

B) Has anyone any experience of timing for Spax to dispatch shocks

On the flip side if there is anyone out there that needs a set of new front spax shocks for an Ace or Aceca (Spax reference G624) at short notice I can help......

Thanks in advance for any assistance

Glen Smytheman - PS you can also email me on

Hi all and greetings from NZ.  It has  been a super summer for driving in NZ for the last two months and we have hardly seen any rain - albeit that it looks like this is about to change this weekend.....

A big favour if anyone from anywhere in the world can assist with the request below which is the the last item required to get a Bristol which has been off the road for more than 20 years back on the roads of NZ where it belongs.

I need a set of piston rings for 66mm dia Mahle pistons as fitted to 6 cylinder 2 litre Bristol engines.  Top 2 rings are 2mm wide.  Lower oil rings are 5mm wide, but must be 3 piece or preferably 4 piece for better control of oil consumption.

Any assistance greatly appreciated.  You can also email me on

Wishing everyone safe driving for the year ahead

Glen Smytheman

Hi all,

Greetings from New Zealand.

A few items needed to get two Bristols back on the road in NZ as follows:

1. Timing Chain Cover for large nose crank Bristol Engine
2. 3 x Solex 32PBI Carbs - I can get these for approx GBP50 each down here which I suspect is probably about the cheapest available but thought I would check in if anyone new of anything for sale at a sensible price.

The above will get two additional Bristols back on the Road down here.

If anyone can assist please send me an email to

Many thanks in advance

Glen Smytheman

Hi all from NZ.  I have amongst my Bristol spares a set of Mahle Pistons for a Bristol engine with reference 6594 under the skirt.  Is there anyone that give me an idea of the compression ratio using these pistons with a standard head. Many thanks, Glen

Hi all from New Zealand.  Along with my Ace Bristol we also have a Bristol 406 in the family, which is in the final stages of restoration.  I wanted to see if there would be any interest from AC/Bristol enthusiasts from around the globe that were looking to travel to NZ in hiring the 406 to complete a tour of NZ with a real difference.
   I would envisage people arriving in Auckland (we can probably collect you from the airport and put you up for a couple of nights whilst you get over the flight – we are just up from the beach and for anyone into fishing you can catch snapper up to 10 pounds within rowing distance of the beach).
   The exact trip and duration would be up to you but I would recommend heading north to the Bay of Islands, then south taking in the Coromandel Peninsula, Rotorua, Napier, Wellington before crossing to the South Island where the scenery is mind-blowing and the roads practically deserted.  If you did not wish to return the car to Auckland then it could be left in Dunedin or Christchurch in the South Island.
   This 406 was originally sold in the UK, has spent time in Fiji (it as the UK high commissioners car in Fiji) and has been in NZ for the last 30 years.  The car still has its original 110 engine and overdrive gearbox.  The boot is massive and it comfortably seats 4 adults and is great for long distance touring.  The engine goes rather well, benefiting from a 406 Zagato camshaft (additional 25bhp), ported head and a few other tweaks…..
   The price would be around NZD1400 (approx. GBP700) per week including insurance, breakdown cover (not that you need it with a Bristol) etc. Person hiring would organise their own accommodation, ferry crossings etc.
   The car is still a few months away from completion but if this is something that could be of interest, please send me an email on the following email address:    Best Regards, Glen Smytheman

Ace, Aceca & Greyhound Forum / Bristol crank wanted
« on: March 06, 2013, 07:45:43 »
Hi all,
   A friend over in NZ with a Bristol 405 has a requirement for a good used/new large-nosed crank.  I undertstand Farndon sells new cranks at about GDB 1750 + VAT but does anyone else have a good used one/new one for sale.  Will consider from anywhere in the world.  Many thanks, glen smytheman

Two for sale if anyone is after a project...

Hi all,
   I am wrapt to say that my Ace Bristol BE1175 is back on the road after 18 months having gearbox, brakes, suspension, steering etc done.  In the first two weeks back on the road it has done over 600 miles and all is bedding in well (including driver).
   I had earlier asked a question on removal of an overdrive greabox - I found it easiest to put the gearbox back from inside the car as opposed to from underneath - you need to rotate slighlty to install from the top. We also created a lip the was jacked up from under the sump to rest the gearbox on whilst it was moved gently onto the spline. If I can do it (a lowly banker) then anyone should be able to!
   I am after a copy of a wiring diagram for an Ace Bristol with overdrive gearbox.  If anyone has one that they could email through to me at the following email address it would be greatly appreciated:
   Many thanks in advance
   Glen Smytheman

   Conrods: at least 2x solid stem 100 series conrods, suitable for 100D2 engine (with the narrow big end cap).  Will also consider a full set.
   Also wanted:
   Bristol 100A crank (or later model small nosed crank).  Any condition considered (except cracked).
   Cooper Bristol Replica
   Not AC related but is anyone aware who has built Cooper Bristol replicas anywhere in the world (yes I am aware they have been built in the past here in NZ).  I am interested in getting detailed chassis drawings for a possible project next winter.... Also is anyone aware of anyone that may have a replica chassis for sale or a body buck.
   Will consider purchasing any of the above from anywhere in the world.
   Many thanks to anyone that can assist with the above.
   Please email with any information or call me on +64 274 924 251.
   Glen Smytheman

This is needed to complete an engine and I am happy to organise collection from anywhere in the world. Second hand or new is fine. If anyone has one that is surplus to requirements please get in touch via email kiwiacebristol at hotmail dot com.
   Many thanks

Hi all and Greetings from NZ,
   The work on BE1175's gearbox, suspension, brakes and steering is progressing well.  I have missed getting back on the road for the NZ summer but we are just coming to the end of the worst summer in the last 25 years so its not been a major loss.
   Once the currrent work is completed I am also looking at doing the engine.  Its going fine at the present time but I am looking at doing a full overhaul to include the following:
   1) New crank - the only one I am aware of is Farndon in England at GBP1800.
   2) New conrods - available from Frandon as well at GBP180 each.
   3) New pistols
   4) New camshaft
   BE1175 is used on the road and not raced - I am interested to see where others are sourcing these parts from new (anywhere in the world is fine).
   I am also keen to hear from anyone that has used a Farndon crank to check that they have been happy with it.
   I would also be interested in hearing from anyone that may have purchased these parts new (for example bought for a project that did not proceed) and may be wishing to dispose of them.
   Glen Smytheman

Sale includes all major items such as engine block (85 series, number 1279), head (85c, number 1857), sump, crankshaft, camshaft, conrods, pistons etc.  I believe that this engine was originally fitted to a Bristol 400 saloon.
   The block has just had new liners fitted which are ready to bore for pistons. Block has been pressure tested and painted.
   Also included is an approximately 75% complete Bristol gearbox (early non-overdrive model).
   Treat all items (except the block) as requiring restoration/renovation.  Engine is approximately 75% complete and the block has already had the usual water jacket work completed.
   I have a list of all items included detailed by Bristol part number that I can email/fax on request.  I can also email photos of the engine/gearbox.
   I have a great local freight company that can pack and freight anywhere in the world at buyers expense at reasonable rates. Freight quotes are not a problem.
   Price is New Zealand $7200 (approximately 3700 English pounds, US$6,000, Euros 4,200, Australian $5,800)
   Contact Glen Smytheman as follows: Email: phone/text/sms +64 274 924 251 (New Zealand is currently 11 hours ahead of GMT.
   Its no problem if you want to view in person (or have someone look at it on your behalf - Rugby World Cup visitors most welcome!).  I am only 15 minutes from central Auckland and am happy to collect.
   I look forward to hearing from anyone interested in the above.
   Glen Smytheman

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