The rebuild of the 1934 model saloon Daimler 15 by Chris Bentley


The Daimler was possibly one of the hardest and most challenging rebuilds of any car in Chris’ whole career; it was described as a journey yet was also so satisfying giving this iconic  automobile life again. The rebuild required diligent thinking, and was very educational being a fantastic experience to gain knowledge from.

This repair did not come by-the-book easy though; there were many setbacks we had to overcome to get it to full restoration. One of these was that during repair some bolts that held the engine together completely snapped, due to them being over 80 years old! To overcome that obstacle with some quick thinking, we managed to remove them from the engine and make new cylinder head studs through some out of the box thinking.

Every single part required to get was obsolete and also an antique in 2018, so therefore obtaining them was near impossible, yet through some helpful contacts we managed to get every part we needed.

Another setback was that the car blew a head gasket, so thinking to source a composite head gasket that’s what we did but we soon worked out, it did not work. So therefore we called in a specialist who was very knowledgeable, enthusiastic and helpful. He suggested that we use the copper head gasket of a Lancaster car, as it actually turned out to be the same copper  head gasket the Daimler uses, which was only one of three left in the country. This incredibly divergent thinking by having great knowledge of these beautiful automobiles by the specialist allowed us to finish off the rebuild after tracking down the parts we needed to restore it.

On the whole this journey was one to learn from, and to take a great deal of experience away into future endeavours. This rebuild took much longer than the standard car that comes into the garage, but it was a pleasure to restore such a beautiful piece of history, that is now fully renovated and looking like its fresh out the factory in 1934.