Condensing several decades of hands-on Mini experience into a restoration manual that works with and enhances existing repair manuals, Ian Ayre encourages the reader to evaluate realistically their own potential, equip a garage as restoration shop, and buy exactly the right sort of nasty old Mini. Showing two major semi-professional body restorations, on older and newer classic Minis, this manual explains how a full-scale rust rescue job can be successfully tackled, before looking at the aspects of restoration not usually covered in repair manuals, such as re-wiring, and rebuilding and retrimming seats. Once your Mini is on its way to to full restoration, you'll be shown the art of improving Minis, an art learned during the writing of hundreds of articles on modified Minis ... and in racing and crashing them!
Born in Glasgow and now resident in Canada, Iain Ayre is both opinionated and unfocused, and was warmly encouraged by his school to leave. After several random gap year jobs he decided to take an English and art teaching degree, but as teaching is hard work, he became a model portfolio photographer, cartoonist, advertising copywriter, copy chief and creative director, ending up as a writer at J. Walter Thompson in Mayfair. Unwisely, he launched an ad agency, and when that ended in tears, ambled into motoring journalism, writing for Triumph World, Classic Cars, MG Enthusiast, Kitcar, Japanese Performance, Redline, Jaguar World and Australian and US titles. He launch-edited Classic Ford, and wrote fourteen books about cars and one about gourmet dog food. In his spare time, he creates the occasional car: a Mini based three-wheeler, spaceframed XK120 replicas, a propane turbo V8 Cobra, and currently an Art-Deco-inspired Rolls-Royce boat-tailed two-seat speedster in aluminium.
Iain Ayre has been writing about Minis for longer than he cares to remember, starting with MiniWorld, before the Rolling Stones looked like raisins, and moving over to Mini Magazine while the Mini was still in production. Of the 1000 or so motoring magazine articles he has written, a good percentage have been about Minis. He has driven a Mini to Alicante and back for fun, and has even designed a three-wheeler, based on Mini mechanicals, which failed to make his fortune.
Since 2000, he has been reporting from North America on the US and Canadian Mini scene, and has sadly neglected his rare Canadian-spec Mini, in favour of assembling a Mini-Marcos, an obscure racing kit car based on the Mini mechanicals: this is fitted with a mean 1100cc engine, the spec of which is detailed in this new book. The Ultimate Mini Restoration Manual will be his second book on Minis: the first was a collection of surreal but entertaining Mini derivatives entitled Mad Minis.