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K.A.S. KILMARTIN AUTOMOTIVE SHEETMETAL Pty Ltd.

Austin Healey  -  MG  -  Triumph

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The Healey 6000 Project

 

 
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This certificate was awarded for the 1/4 mile sprint with cold start.

Below is footage of that run.

 

Youtube - John Strick  Healey 6000 at the

Geelong (Eastern Beach) Revival Sprint 2016

 

The Healey 6000 Story

The seeds were sown some time around 2006, when John Strick and I decided it was time to get on with the building of two

purpose built highly modified Healeys. It had long been a regular topic of conversation between us, with various ideas

being bandied around. The common ground we shared was that the body should be as close as possible and practical

to the original body with only subtle changes. In our opinion this is the most endearing point of a Healey and the reason

behind not just simply going out and purchasing the latest Alpha Sports Car etc. The lines and ageless styling of the

Healey body are yet to be surpassed however after 50 years it was considered that other areas of the car could be

improved to take the car closer to current motoring expectations.  Some of the early prerequisites included:-

 

Modern power plant with substantially increased power,

      

 

Chassis and drive train that could handle the increase in power.

    

 

Good brakes.

     

 

Improved handling.

   

 

Air conditioning & improved cockpit comfort

   

 

Aluminium crate Chev 6 litre L98’s were decided on (50 kg lighter than then the 3 litre Austin motor and a tad more

power!) This was to be mated up with a six speed T56 Tremec gearboxes.

It was also decided early on to go with computer controlled fuel injection.

Once the motors had been purchased it was a case of positioning the motor on a new stock KAS chassis and working

out what inner body changes would be needed and where the ancillary items could fit in. Engine mounting position was

worked out, with the motor angled slightly sideways to give clearance for the air con compressor and also helped with

corner weight distribution.

The transmissions were sent off to Mal Wood in Queensland to have Camaro extension housings fitted (this placed the

gearshift as close to as original as possible) and at the same time was short shifted.

How do we get the power to the road was the next question – the decision was made to go with a 5 link setup and fully

adjustable coil over shockers and a Ford 9” LSD with a lightweight centre.

The front suspension designed and built by McDonald Bros. Melbourne – a fully adjustable top & lower wishbone and

adjustable coil over shock absorbers.

Steering design adopted was the proven setup that the Healey Factory, Melbourne utilize in most of their modified builds

– Subaru rack and Triumph collapsible column. Zero bump steer was achieved after careful positioning of the rack.

Ford Falcon XR8 brakes were used with a twin diaphragm booster.  – remembering that this set up is used for normally

pulling up an 1800kg car. (The Healey tipped the scales at 1200kg). Wheels chosen were 17” x 8” front and 17 x 9”

rear, shod with sticky Yokohama performance tyres.

Driver and passenger comfort was enhanced by moving the dashboard/steering wheel forward some 3 “– an extra 2” of

footwall width was achieved by offsetting the inner sill from the A pillar outwards (but still being able to mount the front

guard/wing/fender without any modification)

An extensively KAS modified chassis was the built up, which included “V” webbed chassis rails, beefed up chassis

outriggers, cross members, rear hoop/cage to accept the rear coil over setup and an extra cross brace under the sump

of the motor.

PWR were commissioned to build an aluminium crossflow radiator specifically designed to have a similar capacity that the

motor is used to running with.

Bodywork was done by John; painting was done per Gary Watts (Grub) in Ballarat and the car trimmed by Garry

Blackman Melbourne.

John’s car has now been completed since April 2015.

The good points have been.

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Excellent comfort due to improved driving position.

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Exhilarating power, combined with the ability to get the power to the road which is testament to the combination of

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rear wheel weight bias, correct set up of the 5 link rear suspension and 9” sticky tyres.

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Predictable handling.

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Fuel economy that puts a smile on your face when filling up next to regular Healeys.

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Engine cooling setup that has performed faultlessly – running  “liquid intelligence”

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computer engine management has certainly helped out.

Bad points to rectify include -

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Differential noise entering the cockpit – have tried different diff centres to try and overcome this – but to no avail; our

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next step is to try bigger and softer bushes on the trailing links, endeavouring to isolate the noise from travelling along

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the links (the upper links are at hip height and are mounted in close proximity to the gearset, and it is suspected that

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the noise may be entering from this point).

Another source of the transmission noise could be the roll bar – so next step is to fill the tubes with expander foam.

Getting the cruise control operational and minimising the likelihood of speeding tickets!

We would like to think we have come someway in bridging the gap of a mid-sixties sports car with a current sports car.

OK it may not have ABS , stability control etc., however it is a modern “drivers” car with performance to match anything

on offer today, and maybe, dare we say –would have raised a twinkle in Donald’s eyes if he were still alive today.

 

Greg Kilmartin   

                           

                             

                            

                             

                             

                          

                            

                          

                          

                              

                          

Last modified: 28-Apr-2017