One Month In: How’s The Car Doing?

So I’m a little more than one month and 6000km into my trip. And a few people have been asking how the car is holding up, as I haven’t really mentioned anything in my blog. No news is good news right?

Well, I’m pleased to report that the car is just fine. Boring, I know, but there it is. It just keeps on running, every time I turn the key she fires right up, oil pressure good.

Driving in Dar es Salaam.

Driving in Dar es Salaam.

Some of the roads do take their toll, on me more than the car it seems. The roads in South Africa are glorious. Stop whinging about them. Zimbabwe rewarded me with smooth (at times not so smooth but still good) roads all the way from Beitbridge to Victoria falls, and the Zimbabwean fuel is great.

The roads in Zambia, from Livinstone to Lusaka were a bit of a challenge. The rumble strips shook me up until I thought I was going to be sick. But there car survived. The Great North Road was a real treat. The car ran cool and quiet all the way to Shiwa Ngandu, and tacked that dirt road with no issues. It did however make one of the screws on the spotlight brackets come loose, which I then had to tighten. A whole minutes work.

Tanzania has been a challenge with its busy roads and corrupt police, and yes, I did have an ignition issue on the beach with was sorted easily. The Zambian and Tanzanian fuel is pretty awful, 91 Octane rating. Not good for an old sports car, I’ve had to change my driving habits to avoid preignition, which is when the fuel ignites while the piston is on its compression stroke.

So what work has gone into the car so far?

1. Spotlight bracket screw adjustment (Not really work)

2. Top up oil, 1 Litre since Dargle (Now in Arusha, 6000km)

3. Clean distributor mounting plate (Was causing bad earth and weak spark)

4. Adjust timing to deal with bad quality fuel.

5. Change to cooler spark plugs. (NY7C)

And that’s it. Car’s running just fine, but I will give it a proper service and clean (It’s filthy) in Nairobi.

This road was no issue for the car.

This road was no issue for the car.


  1. June Schei says:

    Good for you Jethro and not forgetting Alfa!

  2. Paul Rea says:

    I saw your story on Petrolicious. I live in Dublin about 20 minutes from Dargle Valley. Best of luck with the trip. When are you hoping to make it over to Ireland roughly?

  3. Hi Jethro, Jungle Junction B/packers in Lavington, Nairobi offers good beer, bed and first rate workshop. Martin

  4. AdamB says:

    Hi Jeth, we met in Bulawayo and I’m very pleased to see that you (and your car) are still on the road. I hope all keeps going well and that you make it all the way to the other Dargle.

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