So this is my website, I have almost no experience in websites, but being an engineer I thought I would have a go. I want to learn a bit about websites, or at least how to use templated ones, tell a few tales and record things I find interesting. Primarily I am inspired to record what I am doing with my building of a Gardner Douglas GD Euro Cobra Mk4.
I will also write about some of my cars and other things that may only be of interest to me.
As The Who sang in 1978… “Who are You?”
Well, I am Nigel Cooper, born in 1956, with a fondness for family, close friends, dogs, specific cars and enjoying and discovering wine.
I only ever paid proper attention to maths and the sciences at school and it seemed easier to go to university than work, so I did. Since graduating I have been an engineer all of my working life.
I am now retired as of May 2015, having worked for 34 years as a consulting engineer designing all manner of mechanical and electrical systems for major building projects. I worked in various countries around Europe, even setting up an office in the Middle East, but mainly I worked in London. You may have shopped in a Mall, stayed in a Hotel, swum in a Pool, connected to Data Centre, been treated in a Hospital, worked in an Office, sat in an Auditorium or Sports Arena or even lived in an Apartment building that I was involved with. I am proud to have been a senior partner in the firm and helping it to grow to the business it is today, I will always wish it every success. My work had always kept me happy and busy, perhaps too busy, so I am now revelling in the freedom to do what I wish when I and my family wish.
I have always been interested in cars and tinkering with all manner of mechanical and electrical things. I dismantled things as a boy and eventually was able to repair far more than I broke. Luckily my dad was a fitter, working with precision engineering, so he was practical and had tools I could borrow until I collected my own. My early car and motorbike history, as a schoolboy and student, was funded by part-time jobs. Lack of funds meant that the only way I could keep on the road was to repair, rebuild and maintain everything myself or with the help of my brother. I did have dreams of better cars, which never faded but had to wait a long time until other life essentials were paid for. My foremost schoolboy dream was to own an E-Type and that, eventually, came true when I was 50 (and again at 52).
Recently, in the summer of 2017, I needed another diversion after a disappointing venture into American Muscle (Those American cars from the late sixties were beautiful to look at but barely evolved from hay-carts in terms of build quality, technology or handling).
I wanted a V8, to make the sound-track and to be an open two-seater to ruffle my hair whilst it remains. I considered a TVR, then thought about the fun of building my own car. I needed another project, (my other cars work and don’t need a whole lot of attention!)… This quest led, after much review, to Gardner Douglas. IMHO Gardner Douglas are the most developed and modern vision of the Cobra, it is not slavish to the now superseded elements of the original design or materials and is sensibly upgraded. The Cobra is also within my reach as some dreams aren’t; I realise I am unlikely ever to own a Maserati Bora.
Welcome! (this is really for me, but hopefully you will find something of interest)