SOLD - 1967 Austin Healey BJ8

My wonderful Healey will be up for auction at TheFinest’s Boca Raton Concuors d’Elegance auction on February 11th. 

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This might just be the coolest Austin Healey BJ8 on the planet. We've owned several great Healeys before, including one restored by Kurt Tanner, and nothing we've had compares to this beauty. The odometer reads under 13,000 miles at the time of writing. Based on what we know about the car's history, the mechanical, interior and undercarriage condition and the opinions of several experienced restorers and avid Healey drivers (who've driven this car), we believe this mileage to be accurate and correct. This is a traffic stopper that runs and drives like it's a couple of years old. It's a "car-guy's" dream with patina that has to be seen in person to appreciate. 

I've posted just under 200 pics below to give you an exact representation of the condition of this car, but what these pictures find it hard to convey is the personality and presence of this car; truly one of a kind and impossible to repeat or recreate. This car elicits a response and emotions from people that I've found extraordinary; very different from those who've appreciated and/or commented on one of our restored cars.

This is a true barn find, last registered in 1971 and having been parked by the daughter of the original owner in 1972, not to see the light of day again until being wheeled out in 2010. An absolute JOY to drive and patina like nothing I've seen before. She's had a thorough mechanical refurb and new carpet. The valve cover and wheels have been refurbished as well, but just about everything else is original, including all of the chrome, the period paint and that AMAZING INTERIOR.

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THE STORY - Approximately five years ago, Ned Gallaher (of Gallaher Restorations, Landrum SC) was working on an old MG, he jumped in for a trip to the gas station, where he was approached by Jeanne Millet. In Ned's words: "She was driving a van that looked like she lived in it. She came up to me and asked about the MG that I was driving and if I knew someone local who worked on them. I told her that I did. She said that she had two cars in her garage that had belonged to her dad and hadn't been driven in 30 years. She said she might be interested in restoring them and could i come by for a look. I went to her place a little while later and found the Healey with a 1960 MGA and gave her an estimate to get them running again. i also told her that I'd be interested in buying them. I saw her a couple of times after that, but she neither wanted to sell or repair them. In 2010, I had a call from lawyers who were handling her estate and they asked if I'd be interested in purchasing the cars. It turns out that she was receiving meals on wheels and she stopped eating. They notified the authorities, because she lived alone. She was committed to a hospital, where she later died. She was approximately 90 years old. She had no next of kin, so everything was going to the Humane Society. There was so much stuff in her house, it took two auction companies to sell everything. I bought the MG and Healey and got them out of there. There was a 1947 Woody in another garage which was sold at auction." 

Ned purchased the car with his friend Alan and spent the next two years working on it, on and off. I've seen it in the back of his place for a long time and I've asked him over and over if he'd sell it. One day I got a call that I could buy it. I jumped at the chance. Now it's your chance to not just own a super-cool barn find, but to own one that's been completely sorted!

Here's what's been done to the car since being pulled out of Jeanne Millet's "barn":

Replaced exhaust system with stainless steel.

Rebuilt brakes, new rear cylinder, new pistons front, new hoses front and rear, new master cylinder, rebuild brake servo unit.

Repaired handbrake.

Rebuilt clutch master and slave cylinders, replace hose, flush system, replace metal h.p. line

Replaced water pump and hoses, new antifreeze, new belt for water pump

Removed radiator and had it cleaned

Installed new fuel pump

Removed fuel tank and had it cleaned.

Rebuilt carburetors, installed new floats and needle valves.

Replaced all fluids

Greased all fittings including front up-joints

Replaced angle drive on 5 speed, removed, cleaned and lubed the cable

Replaced spark plugs and points

Replaced overdrive switch, removed and cleaned the screen in transmission for overdrive unit and changed fluids.

Installed tail lights

Installed over-riders on bumpers

Removed the seats and installed new carpet.

Repaired lights

New battery

Sent wheels to Hendrix Wire Wheel Repair in Greensboro SC for repair

New tires fitted and balanced

Original valve cover removed and refinished.

Since found by Ned, only the carpet, the valve cover and wheels have been refurbished cosmetically. The paint and interior have been left as untouched as possible. There has been no paintwork on the body since found. There is some period "custom" paintwork which has faded but can still be seen on the bottom part of the body. It appears that Mr. Millet wanted a two-tone appearance and had the bottom part painted a darker shade of blue. The car may have been delivered this way, we simply do not know. The roof was painted black and Mr. Millet (pronounced millay) also added fender mirrors and fender-mounted turn signal/brake lights. One of the turn signal/brake lights was broken, so we removed the stems and lights, but left the base, with a chrome cap placed in the hole. Mr. Millet also painted "Candlewood Kennels" on the doors. From the very little that I could find on the Internet, it seems that the family ran a Kennel in Easton Massachusetts which bred Whippets. I found several instances where Jeanne was acknowledged as having shown their dogs in the early 1960's. We believe that Jeanne lived there until after her father's death, then moved to South Carolina in 1972. (If anyone reading this knew the family when they lived in Massachusetts, I would appreciate any information). 

NOW THE PICS… ENJOY! Call Ken to discuss this car 828-674-6155

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G And S Motors LLC, 16A National Ave, Fletcher NC 28732 ~ Tel: +1 (828) 654-3222