Classic Car Articles
It was just too difficult! Edgar Hains wanted to call his business Ford Four as a reflection of his experience and interest with Ford engines, but came across problems with a slightly larger organisation that used the first part of the name. Perplexed at what to do he thought of a way around the problem and came up with Fjord Four Ė perfect of course as in Scandinavia the letter J is silent. Whatís the connection with classic cars? Well itís typical of Edgarís outlook on automotive problems. There is always another way to fix a problem and 9 times out of 10 it provides a better result.
Way back when, Edgar started out as a fitter and machinist and went on to work in general engineering and tool design for about 10 years. Then he became attracted to other peopleís garbage and the call of the recycling industry became too strong. Gradually he found himself being drawn to motor vehicles until such a time that he found that he was recycling old motor vehicles. We all know this is a fancy way of saying that he moved into the wrecking business, but that drew him closer to the world of motor sport.
He soon found that he was being called upon to find the occasional part for a competition car, and thatís where the frustration at being unable to help his customers came in.
Edgar then made the decision that he wanted to be in a situation to help his customers and if he couldnít find the part needed then he would provide the appropriate engineering environment to make the needed component. So not only did he buy out his then business partner, but also bought all the necessary engineering equipment. Having trained in engineering and tool design he wanted to return to what he enjoyed the most.
As Edgar described it to Classic Car Gurus, he gets a great deal of pleasure out of taking a piece of rubbish and making it work properly.
Initially it was making flywheels and that evolved into rebuilding gearboxes followed by preparing cylinder heads and also calculating and making the correct camshaft for an engine. While it may have started out as Ford only, that now includes all manner of gearboxes such as Toyota and Holden. Edgar also covers all stages too. As standard as the day it left the factory to fully modified for racing with different ratios and larger diameter layshafts.
With three Bridgepoint mills, surface grinders, cylinder grinders, gear shapers and lathes Edgar is proud to say that Fjord Ford is well placed to take on any task. This includes making complete straight cut gear sets, fitting larger bearings for differentials and machining engine blocks to take crankshaft oil seals. In fact Edgar now proudly says that he can take on almost anything and when itís returned to its owner itís always better than when it was new.
It also doesnít matter what marque it is either. For instance when we called, Edgar had just finished rebuilding a close ratio gearbox for a Hillman Imp. He is willing and more than capable of taking on anything to do with motor vehicles, although he does shy away from bodywork.
Being involved in the industry for so long Edgar is also more than happy to share his expertise with fellow enthusiasts so that you donít waste your hard earned dollars. For instance he is well versed as to what happens when you change or upgrade gear ratios. He says in many ways it is always a compromise, as when you fit improved ratios and retain the standard differential, you are likely to end up with a car that is slow off the mark. Then if you change the differential ratio, you are likely to run out of puff before you reach a decent speed. The answer is a compromise somewhere in the middle.
Edgar also believes that just because you may have prepared you car for competition there is no need for it to run rough, be noisy and just look plain silly. Edgar welcomes the opportunity to discuss the options with customers on any make of car or even other general machining to help you out when others have thrown up their hands. Edgar says that he has had particular success in keeping the aging forklifts purring the way they should.
Give Edgar a call or drop in, as he welcomes a chat, especially when it concerns a difficult engineering problem.
23 Spray Ave.,
Mordialloc, Vic 3195
(03) 9587 1588
Proprietor: Edgar Hains
Mon Ė Fri 9.00am to 5.00pm
Saturday 9.00am to 1.00pm
Words by Patrick Quinn