The day had finally arrived to have the FE inspected and hopefully passed road worthy and to once more be registered for the road. I made the booking, paid the inspection fee and was given a date and time to have both the I.D. and road worthy inspections done on the same day, the I.D. inspection was going to be a walk in the park as this was done once before and I had the old I.D. forms, the one to worry about was the road worthy inspection. Now if you remember in the earlier chapters the FE was defected for a small hole in the Y frame that was bogged up and a rubber bump stop that had a split rubber, when I had made a phone call to the inspection office to make my booking I pointed out the defect notice and what the defects were and asked if the inspection was only for these defects or was the car given a full inspection, you guessed it or maybe not, but his reply was that they only inspect the defects as that was what was on the notice, lying bastards.

As I said the day had arrived to take the FE in to have it inspected, so nice and early I make my way to Regency Park to the I.D. inspection station fill in the paper work and wait my turn which wasn’t that long my name was called and I drive the FE into the inspection shed have a few words with the inspector and go behind the yellow line to wait, things were looking up on this day as there was no sign of the inspector that made my day two years earlier one I didn’t need. Not more than ten minutes had passed when the inspector calls me over to the FE and tells me all good, then says I had been in with this car before and mentions the reason he remembers it, is father had an FE and still had a few parts in his shed, then asked me why it had a defect on it, so I tell him what happened when I came the first time to have the car inspected and how the other inspector slapped the defect on the FE, he asked me who was the inspector, I tell him and his eye lids go up. No more said. His last words to me are you have a nice car and good luck at the road worthy inspection.

 I really didn’t think that the I.D. inspection was going to so quick, because I had almost two and half hours to wait for the road worthy inspection which was only a few streets away and would only take me a few minutes to drive there, but drive there I went hoping to maybe getting in before my booked time. I go into the office and give my name and give a spill that I’m booked in and that I didn’t realise that the other inspection was going to be so quick and if I could get in before, they tell me to wait and see. Good thing they have a TV there, at least time seems to move faster when your watching TV, around an hour goes by and they call my name, just when I was settling in watching a program with some interest, oh well. I’m told to drive the FE into this huge shed with two large doors and to go to the right hand side door. I pull up to the inspector that’s waiting for me out the front and he asks me to give him the mileage and all paper work I have which I do and then I start to feel that not all was going to be good, because this inspector says he had a Holden like this many years ago a FB model, I make a point that this is a FE, good start, not. Then he tells me to drive on to the four poster hoist, again not a good start, especially when I say why and he tells me he’s going to do a full road worthy inspection, unless there is any reason why he shouldn’t and my reply is, if the FE can’t pass this inspection then it shouldn’t be on the road, I was feeling cocky.

Before five minutes passed the FE was up in the air with the both of us under the car looking for who knows what, one thing I’ll give them at this inspection they let you stay with the car and get you to move around the car with them asking a lot of questions not on what you have done to the car but were you found how long you had it and the one they had all guy stuff. Within this period of time I counted five inspectors around the FE, all having a good look and commenting on the cars they had, they all called the FE an FC in fact no lie one of the inspectors thought the FE was a Buick when I drove it into the shed, and these guys are inspecting our cars oh well. I point out the new rubbers and the welded plate on the defect, but you know what it was no big deal this inspector was more interested in the front end, wheel bearing movement and steering, I ask the inspector I had the front end worked on new bearings, brakes and steering arms done, I let him know I have all the receipts in the glovebox if he would like to see them, I guess this guy has heard it all before, because all he says is the car will tell him what has or hasn’t been done, fair call.

Half an hour goes by and most of the other inspectors move on to other vehicles which only leave my inspector another inspector overseeing him and talking to me about the FE he had and that I had done a nice job on this car, I was feeling good this guy was loving my FE and telling the other inspector the small amount of play in the left front side wheel bearing was no big deal and that if I had pumped in a little more grease it wouldn’t have moved at all, all good. The FE comes down off the hoist a quick check on the boot and around the back windscreen, then he tells me to turn on the lights, all good and left and right indicators and then says that the indicators are in the wrong position and the FE will fail the road worthy, I have to explain to him that the indicators are in the tail lights and from factory, I don’t think he believed me, until the other inspector confirmed what I said, I said the FB was the first Holden model that had the tail light and indicator separated, the next step was on the rollers to test the brakes, passed.

Then I get told to park the FE in front of this large curtain and to let it run and to go to his desk and wait to see what he has to write on the inspection form, all he could comment on was that front left hand bearing and said give it a half a turn to tighten it up, apart from that the FE passed with full colours, the other inspector came over when I was ready to go to let me know I had a nice car and to take care of it, I felt really good the FE passed first time full inspection, especially when you hear of so many other vehicles being sent back to be inspected again. I couldn’t wait to go to the Registration office to get the FE some rego after fifty plus years off the road.
I hope you have enjoyed my restoration journey as much as I have, it’s a good feeling when you can bring back a car like the FE a part of Australia’s history to live once more.
Charlie Mifsud

Article ID: RESTO006

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