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Good Buys

Things we’re happy to recommend

On this page we list a few things that we like and perhaps you too might like.

In some cases there’s a link to somewhere you can buy it. In some cases, we earn a commission if you follow that link. Whilst we like it when that happens (and it helps to keep Petrolheads Welcome working) you’re free to buy from anywhere you like, of course.

If you have something that you think we should be telling our members and visitors about, please let us know.

Thank you.

High Performance by Peter Grimsdale

This excellent book is a factual look at the post-War British Car industry’s impact on the world and the world of motorsport. However, it reads like a novel and so is hard to put down.

Recommended.

Read more here.

Portable Solar Phone Charger

Ideal for keeping your phone battery topped-up, just in case you need it… breakdown anyone?! You can charge whilst driving and independently of your car’s power… especially useful if you’re running a positive earth car.

There are many types on the market. We’ve chosen this one at random.

They also make a great stocking filler.

Read more here.

There are some car battery heath ideas further down this page.

The Road trip Book – 1,001 Drives of a Lifetime

This book pretty much covers it all, broken down into regions, distance, climate and even degree of difficulty. It also includes ‘must sees’ and stop-offs en-route… that’s exactly what we at Petrolheads Welcome love!

When you’ve ordered this book, sit down with a coffee and our website to find places to stay along the way.

Read more here

The Racing Driver’s Pocket Book

It is indeed pocket-sized and packed with stories, techniques, history, famous faces (Fangio, Moss, Campbell) and famous places (Le Mans, the Nurbugring) and famous racing brands (ERA, Maserati, Bugatti, the Silver Arrows).

A great stocking filler.

Read more here.

BriteAngle: LED Warning Triangle

We keep one of these in our classic car boot (and also have the motorcycle version on a classic bike). They are collapsable and easy to stow. More importantly, they’re brilliant, in the true sense of the word. Classic cars certainly didn’t come with such things when new… nor hazard warning lights! This unit would also enhance the version supplied with most modern cars, especially on a foggy night.

Read more here

Bamboo Paddle Skewers

Ok, this is slightly tongue-in-cheek, but if you’re a concours entrant, it may just be the difference between winning or not. If you watched my “possibly the most boring classic car video ever” (and got that far in) you will have seen me using these. They’re great for poking around in difficult to reach parts of your car, especially wire wheels. They can be used as food skewers too, apparently.

Read more here

Classic Motorsport Routes

Penned by ace driver and auto-journalist, Dickie Meaden, this is another volume that’s totally aligned with what we do… recommending places to drive your classic or sports car. What better places to drive it than some of the world’s great motorsport venues? Fancy retracing the steps of the famous Targa Florio or Mille Miglia? Maybe the forests of northern Europe are more your thing.

When you’ve ordered this book, sit down with a coffee and our website to find places to stay along the way.

Read more here

When Sex Was Safe (and Motor Racing was Bloody Dangerous)

We thoroughly recommend this weighty tome. It’s an amazing, truly amazing, selection of ultra-high resolution images of historic motoring events, accompanied by present-tense descriptions. The stories, many of them well known, range from Grand Prix of the 1930s to the 1960s Le Mans. Perhaps more astonishing is the lengths to which the producers have gone in creating this masterpiece.

It’s not cheap nor easy to obtain, but well worth the effort and would make a brilliant gift. I know, as that’s how I received it (and still regularly treat myself to re-read).

Fire Safety Stick

These ultra-lightweight and non-residue fire extinguishers reside in most our cars. They’re easy to store away in a glove box, door bin or under a seat.

They work by taking off a safety tab, striking the base on a hard surface and then pointing the spray end at the fire… a bit like holding a Roman Candle, if that’s not an inappropriate analogy!

Read more here

Portable Jump Starter

There are many versions of these excellent little boxes of tricks, but every classic car owner should have one… better still one in every car! We’ve used one to start a car with a dead battery. You simply attach the leads from the unit to your battery with the crocodile clips supplied and start your car. Easy peasy! Much easier than trying to use jump leads across two cars… especially on a cold wet night.

The photo is one of ours, but we’re not recommending any particular version, only that you should keep one handy when travelling.

Read more here.

‘Trickle’ Charger (or, more accurately, ‘intelligent battery charger’).

Whilst we’re on the subject of battery health, these are a must for anyone who owns a car that’s not used as a daily driver. They work by constantly monitoring the battery’s voltage. When the voltage drops below a set level, it commences trickle charging, in much the same way as a car being used on the road would do. They’re ideal for all cars, but perhaps most important for any car that has a small continuous battery drain, e.g. for alarms and trackers.

The photo is one of ours, but we’re not recommending any particular version, only that you should have one (for each of your cars).

Read more here

EVO – Aston Martin: Behind the Wheel of a Motoring Icon

This book is written and illustrated by EVO magazine and so is full of brilliant descriptions of driving a huge timespan of great British motoring icons. From the pre-War cars to the Vulcan, with features on the Bond cars (including the DB10) and Valkyrie. It goes without saying that the photographs are top notch.

Read more here

Jim Clark: Portrait of a Great Driver

This is now something of a collector’s item but worth tracking down. Originally written in 1968 shortly after Jim tragically died in a Formula 2 race at Hockenheim.

You can find out more about Jim’s life and career at the Jim Clark Motorsport Museum.

Passion for Speed: Twenty-Four Classic Cars that Shaped a Century of Motorsport 

This book has the added dimension of a CD that records the sound track of each of the cars featured… and what cars they are! All are from author Nick Mason’s private collection that includes a Panhard B1,  Maserati 250F, Ferrari Enzo, McLaren F1 GTR and, most famously, his Ferrari 250GTO.

Read more here

The British at Le Mans: 85 Years of Endeavour

The stories behind the photos of the history of “the British race held in France”. This book is ideal for all fans of the famous 24 Heures du Mon and, when you’ve read it from cover to cover, start planning your visit there, to its museum and your stopovers en-route.

Read more here

Brooklands: The Official Centenary History

One of the worlds’s oldest motorsport venues is now a museum and regular venue of the motoring press. It wasn’t always so, as gallant racers defied the speed-unworthiness of their cars and the immensely steep banking to reach terrific speeds for long periods. Scandal and intrigue stalked those early days of paddock life, some of which is recounted in this commemorative volume.

Read more here

The Last Road Race

Richard Williams is a highly regarded motoring (and music) writer and this book is a good example of why that’s so. Here he recounts the 1957 F1 Grand Prix, the last to be raced on public roads. His writing includes testaments from some of those involved, including Stirling Moss, Jack Brabham, Tony Brooks and Roy Salvadori.

Read more here

Please note, we only recommend things that we have used or read ourselves. We simply want to enhance the joy of being a Petrolhead by sharing these things with you. If you don’t like something we’ve recommended, please tell the supplier or manufacturer, rather than us, as they’re best-places to do something about it.

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