A Remembrance of Dave
by Ed Flax
Spring 1990. My two T-Series MGs are due at Port Newark in 3 weeks for the Circuit of Britain. After weeks of frustration, I can’t get the TD engine to run without overheating and desperately need help.
I call Dave Raymond and in minutes, he’s giving me information and ideas to test the cooling system and block for leaks. One test kit and a couple of hours later, the bad news is that my TD engine block is cracked on the top deck and can’t be fixed. Where am I going to get another block at this late date? How can I get it on the road in time to make the ship sailing? Am I going to have to rent a non-MG for the trip?
Dave is immediately there, offering to lend me a block from one of his TDs for the trip. In a day, I’m in Redding, CT. Dave’s already got the block pulled out, cleaned, honed, with a set of matching pistons, all ready to go. With lots of encouragement from Dave, I leave for home knowing that we will make this work.
With a few all-nighters, TD 0905 is back on the road, the engine running like a dream. After some break-in miles, the car heads for the docks ready for the trip. For three weeks and 3500 miles, from Lands End to John O’Groats, all across England, Scotland and Wales that car ran like it was meant to. My two boys, driving the TD, had the time of their lives. They couldn’t have made the trip without the kindness and help of Dave Raymond.
My chance to pay back some of Dave’s kindness came sooner than anyone expected, when Joanne’s TC racer lost its engine shortly after we arrived in England. I played mechanic’s assistant to Dave, passing wrenches, coffee and encouragement while Dave got that car right again in a day, to be able to run the Circuit of Britain.
Mine is just one story of Dave’s kindness. There are literally hundreds of MG enthusiasts whose trips to GOFs or local meetings would have been so much more difficult if not for his ever-present encouragement, incredible MG knowledge, talented mechanic’s hands and his willingness to share it all, keeping our little cars on the road.
We will miss you. Rest in peace, good friend.