All Hands To The Pump

Has the world’s weather has gone crazy?

America is being thrashed by snow gales and stupid cold temperatures that are breaking records, the UK is seeing more rain than it can cope with, again. Last year we had droughts and hose pipe bans would you believe. We have not escaped completely unscathed, but we have been here before and we are well prepared, in fact, a bit like cracking an egg with hammer to be precise. The pits that some of the cars sit over in the lesser used work shops can turn into small swimming pools if we don’t kept an eye on them. With that in mind, a while ago we purchased a water pump for that very reason. It wasn’t an ordinary pump as you would expect. It’s a pump from the old British Army fire engines, named the Green Goddess. The original brief was to design a portable pump that could be carried by two men (they would have to be big men mind you) to the source of the water and used to pump water back for the hoses for a fire. It can move a staggering one thousand litres in a minute. Where am I going with this?  Well, it has a car engine as the power source – of course. The engine was used for racing and was also known as the Coventry Climax which was later fitted into the more common road car known as the Hillman Imp in road spec of course. However in race spec for its class, the Hillman Imp was pretty good racer thanks to the very versatile engine that was light, strong and would rev its little cylinders out all day long.

The pump looked to have seen better days and had not been started for a number of years. We found out that the magneto wasn’t working, hence no life. But we had a plan, we fitted it with a coil and battery to spark her into life and it now works. We will get round to fixing the magneto, but for now we like the retro wind up handle and the power from a battery and coil, the hand cabled throttle control, the one gallon fuel tank, the tiny water tank etc. We will also paint it back to its proper green colour and restore it properly, but for now its doing it’s job, and doing it very well. It was a good buy for historical reasons and also does a brilliant job decades on.


The down side of this pump, we start it up, it clears the water, it being the pits fill up again, we start the pump and the cycle repeats. The current drainage works fine and is always pretty good except for the most adverse condition like we are having now. So we have to keep watch, we can even have some fun with it and rev it up for max pump or slow it down for a more sustained pumping, which is still too fast for what we really need. We would rather have it that way round than having a pump that can’t keep up to be honest. The other issue with the design is the open air, the rain on it can make things a little damp should we say. But, we have Gibbs Brand, a generous spray with the Gibbs keeps the parts water tight and she starts pretty much first time, every time now.

The high winds also had an effect on some of the trees unfortunately, so we decided to cut a rather precarious looking tree down before it damaged anything. We also had a little lake form where the debris from the trees blocked some drainage, we cleared the blockage and the pump sorted the rest out as well.

Wikipedia has some good notes on the Hillman Imp which I have added at the bottom, along with the Green Goddess and Coventry Climax engines, there is much too much information to post here on it all but it’s worth a quick look.

The Hillman Imp

The engine

The Racer

New Stock:

We have had some new stock items delivered to us and we are very pleased with, we will post these very soon once we have had time to catch our breath. Stainless Steel parts that looks like polished chrome no less!! Interested? We were.

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About Mustang Maniac

A business dedicated to restoration of Classic Mustangs. We supply parts for all ages of Mustangs 1964 to present day, servicing, restoration and custom builds. Anything your Mustang needs, we can help.
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5 Responses to All Hands To The Pump

  1. I saw that pump and its a great bit of kit.


  2. wow, that was pretty vicious


  3. Debbie says:

    Thank you mentioning our US plight of snowfall! It has been a hectic few days of accumulating snowfall and wondering if we can make it into work. Thank goodness the Nuessle family has a sensible little Honda that I can drive while the Mustang relaxes a bit in the garage. Roads are horrible, yet lend themselves to self induced drifting. Hopefully the weather will break for all of us on both sides of the pond.


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