On Wednesday 1st August a busload of Rotarians and visitors travelled to Malvern to visit Morgan Cars. After splitting into groups, our knowledgeable guides took us round the works to see how a Morgan is largely handmade.
The chassis is a fabricated aluminium component, not made at the Malvern works but sub-contracted.
Attached to the chassis is a wooden frame( made from ash. Ash is used because it is light and easy to work. The original former for the rear wing frame is still in use. We learned that Morgan had in the past bought ash from the Ardennes, but found it contained fragments of shrapnel and bullets from WW2 which damaged their woodworking machines. .
The aluminium bodywork is all made largely by hand at Malvern. There are press tools to form the sweeping wings but louvred bonnet lids and most other parts are handmade. There are none of the huge press tools used elsewhere in the motor industry. Consequently the factory is quite a peaceful environment. Engines and transmissions in the 4/4 and Plus4 cars are all Ford, untuned because the cars are so light that they perform well anyway. The Plus 8 currently is powered by a BMW V8, soon to be discontinued. . The original Morgan was a three wheeler built by H.S. Morgan for his own amusement. After finding that there was interest in his car, he went into production, and the cars were made for many years until the model was discontinued.
Recently the three wheel Morgan was reintroduced in its original form but updated. The original JAP engines are no longer available, and the current 2 litre V Twin engine comes from a manufacturer in the USA that once made engines for Harley Davidson.
The visit ended with an excellent lunch in the Morgan dining room, and after photographs in the car park, we re-joined the coach for the trip back to Nottingham.
Our congratulations and thanks to President Graham for organising an excellent day out, no doubt fulfilling the ambitions of many of our motorhead Rotarians.
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