As the warmer weather starts to emerge from the very cold snows of the recent past I look forward to seeing more and more people taking their pride and joy out for a spin. And I don’t mean the other half. I am referring to the car that is kept in the garage for special occasions.
Some of these will be classic and others simply older cars with enough historical interest to be collectable and worth preserving or restoring rather than scrapping.
How old is a ‘classic’ car?
Again, it depends who you ask. The closest thing we have to a cut-off date is currently the 1st of January 1978 – cars built before this particular day don’t incur vehicle excise duty. This is a rolling date but it offers something approaching a government definition of ‘classic’.
It’s still not very specific, though, and plenty of people would argue that there are cars built after 1977 that currently qualify as ‘classic’. The MG B GT, the MkII Escort, and the Golf GTI all fall into that category. Is there a more workable definition?
Maybe Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs might be the answer? They see as ‘classic’ any car that is worth £15,000 or more, and aged 15 years or older. This combination of price and age is the closest we have to a metric of desirability – if a fifteen-year-old car commands a price of £15,000, it’s probably something pretty interesting.
Mazda MX-5 Mk1
Our particular favourite is the Mazda MX-5 Mk1 although we suspect that it will be some time before they fall into HMRC’s definition. We own two of these having restored them from the original scruffy state. However, I am always on the lookout for more.
MacDonald Ryan Ltd
This is a sister company that shares the same premises with us. It specialises in older car restoration and are particularly seeking Mazda MX-5 Mk1s especially as they have been able to build up reasonable stock of spares.
So, if you or your friends do own one please let us know. Even if it is not in road worthy condition I would be happy to have a look although it would be best to send me a few photos in the first instance.
We serve a fairly wide area from Farnham including Tilford, Frensham, Churt, Headley, Headley Down, Lindford, Bordon, Kingsely, Alton, Crondall, Church Crookham, Fleet, Aldershot, Farnborough, Camberley.
If the cars are located outside of these areas then please phone.
Telephone: 01252 217087 [email protected]
Everyone talks about value for money but is this simply a product or service that is cheap? Where do quality and service feature? And is the personal touch important?
I have written several blogs over the years that have been posted onto my website and onto Facebook. Understandably these have tended to be about car related issues. I thought that, as we have just entered another new year, it might be interesting to focus on VALUE.
I am the owner manager of Bumps & Scuffs and take great personal interest in all aspects of the business but particularly in ensuring that my customers receive great service at affordable prices.
I recognise that car repairs are seldom as cheap as anyone would like and that, where there is damage to more than one panel, the costs can seem to be unaffordable – even when you involve your insurance company.
I fully accept that the cost of repairing more than two panels can result in savings for me. For example, the paint will have been mixed and much of the preparation work can be done at the same time.
For that reason I am offering discounts of up to 20% on all jobs that involve the repair of more than two panels.
This should result in an already competitive price becoming absolutely compelling.
In the event that you feel you need to refer to your insurance company all you need do is submit our quote and I will look after the rest of the process.
OK so what about service levels?
When you come to my Farnham workshop (Wrecclesham more correctly) for a quote we will go over the damage with you. A fully detailed quote will then be emailed to you on the same day. Where appropriate this will also show the discount for multi-panels.
I operate from two workshops and can offer not only short lead times but also short repair times. In this way the inconvenience of your car being unavailable is minimised.
In the event that you need a car whilst it is being repaired I am happy to relate that I have negotiated very competitive rates with a local car hire company. They will deliver the car to my workshop.
Once you are booked in you will receive a reminder of the date via a text message.
I pride myself in my workmanship and those of my staff. I operate from my workshop in Wrecclesham and also from a nearby fully equipped body shop. All jobs, large and small, are completed to the highest of standards.
Since I re-located from Bourne Mill to Wrecclesham I have carried out almost 2,000 repairs. Yes, some (-2%) quality issues have arisen but only one has ever failed to be resolved amicably.
Although primarily based in Farnham I have been fortunate enough to attract customers from a wide area. Included in this area are Tilford, Frensham, Churt, Headley, Headley Down, Lindford, Bordon, Kingsely, Alton, Crondall, Church Crookham, Fleet, Aldershot, Farnborough, Camberley.
I am in my workshop six days a week. I have many years’ experience of working with cars and am more than happy to discuss any problems you have with yours and be on hand to resolve any issue that may have arisen with your repairs.
Thus the value you receive from me is not just compelling prices but high level of service and outstanding quality.
Many people never wash and many never have it washed despite the multitude of places that offer this service.
All too often cars whose body work has been neglected are brought to me for repair and I invariably have to clean the damaged area prior to starting the repairs. However, that is a relatively minor issue. Keeping your car clean isn’t simply about pride of ownership: it can significantly extend its life, too.
- Grit and grime gets into moving parts and the chassis, leading to accelerated wear and corrosion.
- Winter road salt is especially corrosive, while bird droppings play havoc with paintwork.
Take your car to a hand wash, or simply do it yourself. Automated car washes have stiff brushes that may leave fine scratches – plus they miss bits, too.
Use a proper cleaning solution rather than washing-up liquid and dry the car using a soft chamois.
Polish the paintwork at least once a year to provide a layer of protection and attend to stone chips promptly to prevent rust spreading. I offer a mopping service that will restore much of the damage but there is no substitute for regular attention.
It’s also important to keep the inside of your car clean.
- Using a protective spray on the dashboard plastics reduces the likelihood of cracking or discoloration. Placing a sunshade in the windscreen on bright days helps here, too.
Many of us have garages, but how many actually use them? OK, we’ll rephrase that: how many actually store cars in them?
As cars become larger and more corrosion-resistant, most are left on a driveway or road, with the garage effectively becoming an extension of the loft or garden shed.
Well, consider this your excuse for a clear out. Parking your car in a garage keeps it dry, clean and safe, reducing the risks of accidental damage, vandalism and theft.
It’s likely to cut your insurance premium, too. If you don’t have use of a garage, consider buying a high-quality car cover instead – particularly if you leave your car parked for long periods of time.
Working with Bumps & Scuffs
We can repair almost any damage to your car body and alloy wheels. We also offer a paint restoration service that will help restore the pride in your car. Being positioned on the busy A325 not far from Bird World we are easy to find and have extensive coverage from Bordon and Alton through to Aldershot and Farnborough as well as Farnham and district.
Telephone: 01252 217087 [email protected]
CHILD SEATS IN CARS
I am frequently surprised at how little understanding parents, and grandparents, have of the laws concerning child seats which were updated in March.
Selecting the right car seat will give your child the best possible protection in the event of a crash. It is also worth noting that you’re risking a £500 fine if you’re caught using an unsuitable or incorrectly fitted car sea.
What are the new UK laws on using child car seats?
Previously, children who weighed as little as 15kg could use backless booster seats but concerns over safety resulted in a change in the law.
- From March 1 2017 all new-to-market backless booster seats are only approved for children weighing more than 22kg and taller than 125cm.
- It’s important to note that the regulations affect newly designed and manufactured booster seats sold after March 1. The older rules still apply for seats manufactured prior to this date.
- Only seats approved by the EU are legal in the UK: these will have a label with a capital ‘E’ in a circle.
Adults can choose child seats based either on a child’s height or weight.
- Height-based child seats are called i-Size seats.
- Weight-based child seats offer a range of options: 0kg to 9kg or 13kg, 9kg to 18kg, and 15kg to 36kg.
Children must use a rear-facing seat until they are 15 months old. Never fit a rear-facing child seat in the front if there is an active airbag on the passenger side of the car.
When a child reaches 15 months, their neck will be stronger and it’ll now be safe to mount their car seat facing forward.
- Children weighing more than 22kg and taller than 125cm can use a backless booster seat.
- Children of 12 years old taller than 135cm do not need to use a child seat, but have to legally, before then.
- Child seats must be fitted either using ISOFIX mountings or a diagonal seat belt strap.
- For smaller children, a highback booster seat is recommended.
Why did the law change?
Experts warned that backless booster seats are not secure which renders them unsafe for young children.
In the event of a side-on crash, a standard seat belt offers little protection for a child as it’s not guided across the body in the same way as a booster seat.
When can kids legally travel without a car seat?
- UK law dictates that a child must use a child car seat until they’re 12-years-old or 135cm tall, whichever comes first. Children over the age of 12 or more than 135cm tall must wear a seat belt.
All car seats used in the UK must be European-approved. Look out for a label showing a capital ‘E’ in a circle – this indicates that it complies with the latest regulations.
And spare a thought for your dogs. Although not covered by any law (unlike in France) do think about what would happen if you have to stop suddenly and consider some form of restraint.
Working with Bumps & Scuffs
We do not fit car seats . What we do is fix any damage to your car body and alloy wheels. Being positioned on the busy A325 not far from Bird World we are easy to find and have extensive coverage from Bordon and Alton through to Aldershot and Farnborough as well as Farnham and district.
Driving was once a pleasure but these days almost every aspect is fraught. The reasons are almost limitless:
- More and more people using heavily congested supermarket car parks.
- Accident management companies exploiting every accident that is routed through them
- Pot holes appearing like the spread of teenage acne
- Road works that appear to go on for days on end with little sign of work being done
- The loss of schoolchildren’s ability to walk to school.
- More and more cars crowding onto the roads.
- Uncertainty over the future of diesel cars
- More younger drivers on the road due to affordability of cars
- And, on the horizon, driverless cars.
I could go on but I would run out of space and there is a limit on anyone’s attention span. Let me simply focus on a few of these examples.
More and more people using heavily congested supermarket car parks
As well as supermarket car parks becoming increasingly congested, to the detriment of the High Street, today’s cars are simply too big.
A study found that while parking spaces are no larger than they were 20 years ago, cars are 16 per cent bigger. It means that the average car is now two inches wider than the 5ft 11ins (1.80m) minimum recommended by Whitehall.
So drivers of a standard car like a Ford Focus at 6ft 7ins (2.01m) will struggle to get into the space without pulling in the wing mirrors. And, despite the increase in the price of fuel, the number of “Tonka Toys” also seems to be growing.
Having squeezed into the space, getting out of the car without scuffing the door is proving too much for many motorists.
Car doors have accounted for 50 per cent of car park mishaps, bumpers 14 per cent and wings a further 13 per cent.
At Bumps & Scuffs we see the result of many of these issues. Sadly, the number of times that the offending motorist simply drives off is also on the increase.
Pot holes appearing like the spread of teenage acne
Until I drove into one and damaged my alloy wheel I had not appreciated what a nuisance pot holes were. Increasingly I had noticed more and more of them appearing. Like teenage acne they just popped up at the most unexpected times but I had managed to avoid them.
Until now! I was driving from Bordon on the way to take my children to Alice Holt when I had the misfortune to hit one of these pot holes.
I damaged one of my alloys and the tyre was leaking air. I subsequently discovered that there are sites that you can log on to report pot holes, though this was not high on my list of priorities.
Thankfully, the technicians at Bumps & Scuffs were able to fix the alloy wheel and the disruption was relatively minor.
Working with Bumps & Scuffs
The incidence of minor bumps and scuffs is on the increase. Being positioned on the busy A325 not far from Bird World we are ideally situated to help with most of the issues that arise from modern driving especially as we have extensive coverage from Bordon and Alton through to Aldershot and Farnborough as well as Farnham and district.
We look forward to hearing from you
Telephone: 01252 217087 [email protected]