'68 88":

1968 Series IIA 88" HardTop

The White 88” came with RoadWarrior.  Sometimes Rovers just stick together and don’t part when you buy them, like orphan sibling.  We found it at the Badger’s when Joe called in response to our add with his three rovers, the RoadWarrior, the White ‘68 88” and his Blue diesel (which we did not buy.)  The White 88” sat in a field all alone.  From a distance it looked great.  In fact it looked like it was restored.  It was straight, one color, and not dented.  It didn’t run--its engine was frozen solid and the gas tank was rusty and full of dirt.  On the other hand its interior was great, still pebbled gray, and again it was mostly straight except for a few dings on the front fenders.  The paint was thick but even, and from ten feet away-- wow!  Joe said he was taken in too, his son was going to restore it and change engines but he had moved on to other things.  Anyway when we bought RoadWarrior to get another 109 five door, White Car was essentially thrown in.  So it was ours.  We did not need another ordinary 88” but how could you resist its looks?

At home we moved the engine from RoadWarrior, which ran, to the White 88”.  We washed it and it looked like the one to restore especially with the Kodiac heater.  And then a funny thing happened.  The project stopped.  The car was running, not well but running, and we had a number of others to contend with.  It sat safely in hibernation inside our barn, waiting for the sticky clutch to be repaired.  Then RatsNest was dropped off into our hands and it looked so promising, being an original owner Late IIA and all.  Is it the White 88’s fate to be the Rover that people move on from?  Do Rovers have fates and destinies?  So dad’s ’68 88” now sits and stores the chain saws and weed whips.  She’s now a sort of barn since we rented our barn.  Baring the moss, she’s still a looker from ten feet away.

Can you get too many Rovers?  And how did it get to be Da’s?  Well, when a father and son buy Rovers in our family, someone gets each one.  Sometimes I would give one to Roo like LittleCar, and he would give one to me like RatsNest.  When he would take one like RoadWarrior, Roo would give one to me like Da’s ’68 88”.’  And then Roo would say, damn, that’s the one to restore, I’ll take the 88” cause its so straight and do a frame up, and then it doesn’t happen and its still a "barn."  So Rovers are about father and son exchanging gifts, hopes for the future, running out of energy, moving on to other projects, and looking at it from ten feet away and saying wow!  We are going to do a frame up on that one because LittleCar’s engine is almost shot.

Next Rover:  Rat'sNest

Back To The Dirty Dozen