HubNut hits 20,000 subscribers! Thank you.

Blimey. The HubNut YouTube channel has hit 20,000 subscribers! That’s quite an achievement.

It deserves a celebratory video, but workload means you’ll sadly have to wait for that.

TWC the Invacar

This pair have had quite the year.

To be honest, I can’t quite believe it. It was only in April this year that I celebrated 10,000 subs!

It’s been truly joyous to discover that there are plenty of people who also have love for the unloved in the world of the motor car. That love has helped the channel grow, and I’m very grateful for it. We’re now running a mail order business, sending our HubNut merchandise all over the globe! It’s astonishing.

Right. I need to complete my final issue of Classic Jaguar magazine, and then I can sort out a suitable celebratory video, and really focus on developing the channel even more during 2019. There is so much I want to do, so many cars I want to capture on video and so many adventures to have with my own vehicles. I cannot wait! Thank you all.

I need to write

It’s fair to say I don’t write much on here any more. The main reason is time. The channel has gone from strength to strength, and while I find great joy in making the videos, they eat up a lot of time, especially when it comes to monitoring comments and dealing with the merchandise that has sprung up off the back of it. Especially when there are still day job requirements of editing two magazines to cope with…

In fact, the editing isn’t eating up that much time. I try to only shoot what I need, in a linear manner on one camera, so I can generally assemble a video in under an hour – sometimes under half an hour. I think ten minutes is my record…

Recording them is a strange business though, because I am a writer. You might assume, therefore, that my videos are carefully scripted and planned. Not a bit of it! Though, I think the skills I’ve used to make features happen over the years certainly come in useful. Whether writing or filming, there’s a certain amount of brain churn before you put finger to keyboard or record button. I think that’s one reason I’m sleeping so well at the moment. My brain is getting a pretty decent work out!

It certainly is this month, while I edit two magazines alongside each other. Yet, here I am at 2146hrs at night, typing words into my keyboard for no greater reason than I really, really need to. Typing still give me comfort, even when I’ve spent several days hard editing, which has included writing the best part of 4000 words myself this week. And it’s only Wednesday.

But, that’s the way it goes. This is a part of my brain shuffling through the detritus I hurl at it in terms of car facts, imagery and music. It all sort of tumbles around in there and occasionally my fingers feel the need to fly. The real skill of writing does not come from writing when the mood takes you, it comes from writing when it doesn’t take you – and that’s hard. Sheer panic tends to help there, which is perhaps why I need a deadline right on top of me to do my best.

I guess that’s probably enough waffle, but it is an opportunity to say hello to those who still follow this Blog. I’m sorry 2018 has been a rather quiet year on here, but appreciate your support nonetheless. Who knows. Maybe next year, I’ll actually start writing some interesting stuff on here once more. If that’s something you’d like to see, do let me know.

HubNut’s 2017 in cars.

Right, here we go. My end of year ‘hopeless cars’ accounts.

Carried Forward

Elly the 2CV, not quite MOTd as 2017 began. ZX carried forward, but soon sold.

Honda S-MX. Purchased September 2016.

Perodua Nippa. Purchased March 2015.

In, then out

Omega turbo diesel. A fun collection caper, but it didn’t win me over. Sold.

Daimler Sovereign also joined the fleet. It was mostly broken. Elly tried to help. Sold.

Daimler replaced by a Nissan Bluebird with failed head gasket. Got it fixed. Then sold it.

Proton arrived while the Bluebird project was ongoing. It was fun, but short-lived. Sold.

The final bill

Lexus LS400 replaced the Bluebird. And how! Hasn’t been cheap, has been fun.

Honda has been working hard, now has orange wheels and is still on the fleet! 15 months now.

Nippa fast heading for its three-year anniversary on the fleet!

Elly went to France in 2017 to meet the relatives.

The Invacar! This one is really coming together.

Invacar rear parts car

The spares project. This one likely to depart in 2018.

So, there you go. A quick visual recap of 2017 in cars. By my standards, a fairly sensible one. Until the Invacars arrived perhaps. Who knows what 2018 will hold!

A very Happy New year to all my followers. There will be a brand new video at http://www.youtube.com/HubNut on 1st January 2018 to welcome in the New Year, and it’s quite silly.

Fleet update – Nov 2017

Right. Winter is pretty much upon us, so let’s wrap up fleet happenings.

I’ll start with the Honda, as it has been by far the busiest car on the fleet this month, ferrying me up to Hinckley for a photoshoot, then to Birmingham for the NEC Classic Motor Show. It came back from Birmingham carrying a washing machine.

The trip wasn’t without fault, as the Honda managed to pick up a screw in the nearside rear tyre. I was forced to take desperate action. I went to ATS.

ATS offered quick and pleasant service to be fair.

However, it was otherwise problem free bar the fact that it’s still drinking oil. The cam cover gasket is leaking, but I’ve managed to break a captive thread, so I can’t actually remove it at the moment. For now, it’s rust-proofing the front subframe my spreading oil all over it. There are worse problems to have.

The Nippa has been working fairly hard too, having clocked up 3000 miles since MOT in March – which is quite a lot by Nippa standards. It has a windscreen wiper bush problem – as in the bush is turning in its housing. It’s not meant to do that. The spindle is meant to turn in the bush. However, it still works, so that’s a job for another day. It is due a service, but that just means draining the oil and putting another 2.5 litres of 5w30 in. No problem. He says. I did get given a lovely brochure for it at the weekend, which was nice!

A rather lovely gift.

The 2CV hasn’t turned a wheel in November. She’s hibernating, and I promised I’d finally sort out the paintwork I’ve been meaning to do since January. Elly has covered 5000 miles since then, including trips to Ireland and France, and once I started driving her again, I rather lost interest in paintwork. I must sort this out.

The Lexus has mostly been broken, as it repaid me for the recent cambelt job by breaking its alternator. I had a lovely 600-mile trip to see the Invacars, but then the Lexus decided it needed a rest. I swallowed a brave pill and, as the Lexus won’t go on my ramps, had to improvise.

Makeshift ramps – an old Dyane wheel!

A wooden ramp to get the car sitting on a Dyane wheel. Yeah, ok. Not ideal, but it’s not going anywhere. Yes, it is in park and yes, the parking brake is applied too. It’s just lifted the Lexus enough for me to get at the alternator. You can’t get at it from above really. Well, you can undo one of the fixing bolts from above, but then you’ve got to crawl underneath, while swearing, as you try to disconnect the wiring and free the thing from an impossible place.

Once out, the failure point was pretty obvious to be fair.

Broken brushes dot com.

One of the brushes seems to be melted into place. It wasn’t for shifting and the slip rings on the shaft of the alternator (just visible) are toast too. I need the car back on the road for a trip to Devon, so a recon alternator was ordered online with next day delivery. It arrived today. I must fit it tomorrow.

All this has served as a bit of a distraction from Invacar collection, but don’t worry. Next week, I will finally hire a truck and go and collect them! I’m pretty excited. Christmas may not be necessary this year. Nothing will top this.