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The Mk2 Sprite Rebuild Project

We are just starting a new rebuild on this Mk2 Sprite

The Complete car The bonnet is removed
The hardtop is removed Starting to strip out the interior

Mk2 Sprite with original Ashley roof and modified Ashley front as the car came to us, the car was structurally very good, having had extensive restoration recently but the overall finish was not that good 'First job is to strip the car down to a bare shell'

into the bodyshop  inner wings and footwell side panels have been replaced
here seams are being sandblasted the underside had been lightly undersealed
but the boot floor.... that needed some stripping the underside has been given 2 coats of grey stonechip

Into the bodyshop and the front inner wings were in a bad way so inner wings and footwell side panels have been replaced. The bodyshell had been painted so many times in the last 50 years that the only option was to strip it back to bare metal, the seams are being sandblasted here to get right into the tight crevices.The underside had been lightly undersealed on the new floors, but the boot floor.... that needed some stripping! After extensive stripping, wire brushing and cleaning the underside has been given 2 coats of grey stonechip that can be painted over, and will be in the body colour of Farina grey

extensive filler work extensive filler work

Although the car had been taken back to bare metal it still needed extensive filler work to get all lines straight and contours correct, that is why the floor looks like santa's grotto!

prep work continues prep work continues

Several coats of 2 pack primer and the shell is looking good, from here it will have stopper applied, then a guide coat, before being flatted down again with 320 paper and a final primer coat before flatting with 800 paper and top coat of Farina grey applied

3-4 coats of Farina grey 3-4 coats of Farina grey

3-4 coats of Farina grey 2 pack applied to the bodyshell, underneath, inside and outside applied in booth at 85 degrees which sets the paint hard

3-4 coats of Farina grey 3-4 coats of Farina grey

(pictured left) The roof was an original 60's one, having been repaired before and painted several times this caused a lot of difficulties and had to be carefully sanded down to the original gel coat before layers of 2 pack primer filler were applied and rubbed smooth, before at last it was ready for top colour, in this picture even Darryl is lending a hand!' (pictured right) The uniquely modified Ashley front has been temporarily re fitted to the shell to enable the flatting and polishing to take place, here the car has been flatted with 1500 paper, then a G3 mop polish, then a G10 polish, later it will be hand polished with Meguiars deep gloss wax

May 2013 May2013

First fitting up of the bodyshell with front suspension and new wiring loom, at the rear the back axle springs and shocks are installed

May 2013 May 2013

(left) windscreen,roof,inner boot lid and kamm tail first fitting
(right) Starting to look like a complete car again late may 2013

May 2013 - Rollcage and dashboard May 2013 - transmission cover

(left) Rollcage installed and first items of trim in place including the dashboard
(right) Handmade padded Ashley transmission cover

(left) While the bodyshell was being assembled, the 1380cc engine was being built in the engine assembly facility
(right) The newly built engine being installed

(left) Engine fitted, note the Sidedraught DCOE carburettor, LCB exhaust, breather catch tank, race battery, alternator conversion, Ashley alloy radiator.
(right) On the rolling road for setting up and fine tuning at Novatech in Slough, the engine is a 1380 with Piper 285 cam and vernier, Oselli stage 3 head, roller rockers, 10.5 to 1 compression, lightened and balanced bottom end with 7.5" uprated clutch, producing approx. 110bhp at 6500rpm but superb torque from 2,500rpm to 5,750rpm which makes the car very easy to drive and perfectly suited for fast road and trackday use which was the intention.

'The finished Mk2 Sprite in all it's glory, ready for road and track'

'On track at Donington, less than 2 weeks after completion,
doing what the car was built to do'

The Red Sprite Project

The client bought this very presentable 1969 Sprite 1275 with wire wheels

We had a client come to us who wanted a special Midget but undecided between the Lenham or Ashley route, we had both types here and he decided the Ashley was the route for him, so the search was on for a nice Sprite or Midget that would be ready to accept the Ashley bodywork

Bodywork technician gets to work

Within a day of the car arriving with us all the non required panels were stripped from the car, unfortunately the front wings were fibreglass and had been bonded to the inner wings with steel strips

Next operation is trial fit and bracket adjustment of the front bonnet so that if any modifications are needed they can be done before the bonnet is prepared for painting.

Fitting the roof is normally relatively straightforward but this car needed serious adjustment to the screen and quarterlights as none of them had been bolted on properly, when set correctly everything lined up nicely

When the front wings are removed it reveals the mess that was hidden beneath them, which is normally rust and bad welding! without getting too carried away we sanded down and painted the inner surfaces in red lead prior to respraying the inner wings and lower scuttle

Main panels prepared and primed ready for flatting down and spraying in top colour

Before outsides are painted all panels are painted on the inside in bodycolour.

Bonnet and boot freshly painted

Despite or maybe because of the car being painted recently the designated flame red was not a close enough match to satisfy our bodyshop manager so the decision was taken to respray the whole car as it would never have looked right

Mismatched paint

Although the car looked very shiny and smart as it came in there
were several areas where localised repairs were necessary


The most time consuming job is fitting up the hardtop, getting the screen and window gaps right, fitting a full cloth headlining,shaping and rivetting the drip gutter in place, fitting the rear window and seals, all takes more time than you would expect

Using the original boot lock is fine but can take a bit of lining up and adjustment to get spot on

To compliment the bright red exterior the customer went for a pair of our Ashley GT seats trimmed in
red leather with black piping, we also fitted a rear cage for safety purposes, note the cloth headlining

Finished and delivered

The Sprite after being delivered by transporter back to the client less than 4 weeks after it was collected, fully resprayed, painted under the bonnet, wiring loom adapted, new Ashley GT bodywork, new leather seats and all windows and doors realigned for a proper fit. (Client was going to make his own grille with clip on number plate letters a la Lotus Elan.)

If you have a Sprite or Midget that you would like us to give the Ashley treatment to, why not give Darryl a ring on 07956451470 and discuss it with him, or pop down to see current work in progress (by appointment first please) we photograph the car at every stage so that we can supply you with a fully documented story of the progress, you will find the whole process completely painless!



'Completed early 2012 was this gorgeous 1963 Midget with 1275 engine, 14" wire wheels and a bespoke sage green interior with Ashley seats, the car soon found a new owner'

See the foot of this page for pictures of 'the build'

Visit the Picture Gallery  to see how we transformed the yellow car below
'The Works Ashley GT built in 2011 made it's debut at the Silverstone Grand Prix circuit and found a new home in December 2011'

Project Cars

'Arrived on the 19th of June, for the full Ashley treatment, is this very early Mk1 Midget,
watch on line as this car is transformed week by week into a beautiful 1960's Ashley GT built in a true 60's style'
'One month on the shell fully prepared for painting and the underside already in it's Iris blue colour.'
The latest pictures, more photos soon!
The pictures below show progress by the 24th August

(below) Out of the workshop and into daylight!
This car was completed for a customer in early 2012

Next into the workshop was this lovely little 1963 mk2 MG Midget,
We bought this early 2011 starting the project it September of that year 2011
It had new floors and sills, but really needed finishing properly so a full strip down and rebuild was undertaken,
If you would like one built like this contact us on 07956451470




The Finished Car!