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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 4:28 pm 
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I have always had a huge soft spot for hatchback Mini's. I have always lusted after one, but having seen the pictures from this years Beaulieu I was shocked to see what a range of different styles there were & how PUG UGLY a lot of the solutions to this problem were.

I would be interested to learn more about this particular Mini perversion & see what you think is an elegant solution to the hatchback conundrum.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 4:31 pm 
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mk1 wrote:
see what you think is an elegant solution to the hatchback conundrum.


thats a metro isnt it?

:lol:

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 4:33 pm 
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Austin A40 Countryman, full of Italian elegance.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 6:04 pm 
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There were definately virtually identical hatches made to each other but they changed design so often that it's not common to see two together nowadays!

There were several attempts by different firms to make a successful hatch, as you say some were not easy on the eye.

The three (?) BMC did at Longbridge had the corners of the hatch cut at an angle, like the Marples car which looked a little severe.

Fred's is the first Radford hatch by all accounts and goes up high into the roof skin and concealed hinges, I dont think they did another the same but who knows.The next Radford attempt was the mid to late '65 one which looked a little like it incorperated the original steel boot upside down, Britt Ekland's was like this, exteranally hinged (x2) again not a stunning looking thing as the lower section didn't follow the lines of the original boot lid.
Then there was the steel hatch Radford did from the end of '65 and that utilised the original bootlid , handle repositioned to the bottom of course and no light recess. To my eyes this one looks the best as it follows the lines of the original bootlid and hinge panel and rear screen position so it's not THAT obviously different to a standard Mk1 rear end.

The later version used ali and GRP, with a raised loading bay, looked alot straighter and smoother cut, no number plate recess and changed the rear end appearance quite alot. Ringo's wasn't a Radford but looked a little like that aswell.

It's quite a big subject and Nev is the expert here, with pics needed to illustrate all the differences but to my mind the best one was the all steel one Radford did from late '65 until late '66 (??) as pictured here :


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 6:14 pm 
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That looks mint

Is anybody still offering the boot conversion?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 6:26 pm 
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I believe the Carabus hatchback was the first Mini to receive a hatchback conversion and as has been said earlier the aperture was cut into the roof and I read somewhere that Eddie Collins felt the roof was not strong enough to support the weight of the all steel hatchback. Later cars which were created in the 2nd half of 1965 and early 1966 had box sections added inside the roof to strengthen the hinge supports. I think Pete's has this feature. Mine certainly does. The main problem is the weight of the steel hatch plus fittings. On the question of number plate illumination, mini has 2 Mk1 no plate lamps fitted sideways to illuminate the short plate, Swiss plates are smaller than ours and the picture posted shows the fixing for the number plate which could be transferred between cars.
The original Radford GT brochure with the hatchback shows what I think were reversing lamps but I've never been able to identify maker. The standard UK number plate is too big to fit the rear gap.
I have added a picture of my hatchback.
Cliff


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:26 pm 
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Pete wrote:
as pictured here :


Are those Lucas Owl eye / ET lamps a common Coachbuilt accessory? a reversing lamp, I presume?

If so, if anyone needs one for their restoration, I have a lovely (looks like NOS) one I'd be happy to sell. I always thought they were just popular with the scooterists.

In terms of numbers, any ideas how many hatchbacks were built - are we talking a dozen or so? or many more than that?

Al


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:06 pm 
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Pandora wrote:


In terms of numbers, any ideas how many hatchbacks were built - are we talking a dozen or so? or many more than that?

Al


About sixty more like! Nev has recorded all known survivors and listed a whole lot more on the 'missing' list. Radford themselves were mowed out with work in the mid to late 60s!


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:15 pm 
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really? Wow, I never imagined it'd be anything like that many.

Common as muck! :lol:

Al


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:30 pm 
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To date we know of 20 Radford HB’s built 18 of those are surviving. There was also 2 Hooper HB’s built in 65, 1 W&P HB built in 68 (Article in the next Cooper World) and 2 or 3 BMC Hatchback that we believe pre date the Radford HB’s. Radford HB’s evolved through the years to overcome problems and make them better and more cost effective to build.


Last edited by Nevsmini on Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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