Archive | Issue 48 RSS feed for this section

Bits & Pieces

10 May

Gary Wall in New Zealand has asked me to publish a correction to his article in the April issue which described the fitting of an XPAW to a TA. On reading the published article he noticed that he had made an error regarding the re-location of the dipstick. It should of course be moved to the nearside of the engine. Apologies!

Gary has also e-mailed a picture of his steering box bracket modification (used in fitting the XPAW to his TA). It simply consists of two flat uprights bolted to the off side of the two original mounting uprights. This moved the steering box up, forward and to the right. The track rods still cleared the YB sump. Note the lovely peacock blue colour of the car.

Wiring Diagrams for TA/TB/TC (early/late) TD & TF.

A3 laminated copies are available from the editor. They measure 42cm x 30 cm (16.5 inches x 12 inches) approximately. Cost, including UK postage is £6. They can be sent overseas for a little more. Contact me at jj(at)ttypes.org {please substitute @ for (at)}.

Drive safely!
JOHN JAMES
Editor


Lost and Found

6 May

TD12620

Patrick Reed in Western Australia is searching for the TD2 he used to own (TD12620 XPAG 13085, now 21246). It was Green with tan trim and has undergone a number of colour changes, including gold in the 1990s and at one time, cream. pnareed(at)gmail.com {substitute @ for (at)}.

TC3449

Graham Garrity has been looking through various vehicle record archives to establish a link to his original registration number, which he thinks might have been EDT 774. Graham bought TC3449 from a solicitor named Peter Edwards in Doncaster. Records show that a TC with the registration number EDT 774 was supplied to a local garage called Kennings and sold to the first owner, a Mr R S Hepworth. Unfortunately, there is no record to show that EDT 774 was in fact TC3449. ggarrity59(at)outlook.com {substitute @ for (at)}.

TC10183 (GFY 464)

The following may be of interest to the current owner of GFY 464.

A previous owner (Gary Hardware) bought the car when he was 19 for £165 in 1960. He kept the car for 4 years and said it was the best car he ever owned. He sold it in 1964 and bought a new Mini for about £550. The TC went to auction and sold for just over £100.

TC7153 (FAY 475)

TC7153 was originally registered 20 December 1948. It was registered to William John Ford in 1966 and then to Michael John Howard in 1967. In 1968 It was sold to Gary Schonwald who brought the TC to the States. In 1972 Schonwald sold it to Jerry Goguen, owner of Abingdon Spares at the time. Elliot Grover bought the TC from Jerry in 2000. He would like to fill in the blanks of ownership and learn of any history of this wonderful automobile. Perhaps readers can help?

tcelliot(at)gmail.com {Please substitute @ for (at)}

TA Registration Number DOG 474

Terry Ling in Western Australia is enquiring about his TA (chassis number unknown). It disappeared, early 1970s, from a private household garage in Earlsdon, Coventry where Terry had it stored. It was not particularly roadworthy and had no running boards. terryling813(at)hotmail.com

TA1350

David Hughes has found an original Instruction manual for the MG Midget Series T. It has the original MG Guarantee and early service history for chassis number TA1350. mifyer(at)aol.com

Front Cover – TC/9507

5 May

Earlier this year, having just read my copy of Mike’s “TCs FOREVER MORE!”, I was inspired enough to contact John James and join THE MG ‘T’ SOCIETY. John confirmed my membership and in his reply he suggested I write an article about TC/9507, which is the second of the three TCs I have owned.

Some history of TC/9507 in Australia

TC/9507 (Engine number XPAG 10242) was produced on August 25th 1949 and was sold new on January 26th 1950 by Sydney MG Dealer Ron Ward Motors to Dr. Bill Haymet who was the Director of Dental Health in New South Wales at the time.

In March 1975, when I lived in Adelaide South Australia, I purchased TC/9507 that was then located in Darwin in Australia’s Northern Territory, from Wayne Freeman who had bought the TC from Darwin architect Peter Dermoudy (famous for his flying saucer house) during 1974.

TC/9507 in Darwin when owned by Peter Dermoudy in the early 1970s.

Peter had owned the car since 1967 and I had seen Peter’s TC in Darwin some years before while traveling ‘around Australia’. I already owned TC/8752 but I left a message for Wayne to say if he ever wanted to sell the TC I would be interested to buy it.

In January 1975 Wayne was selling the TC to raise some money to purchase a new truck to work in the massive clean up operation after Cyclone Tracy that devastated Darwin on Christmas Eve in 1974. So, a deal was done.

In March 1975 the TC was delivered to Adelaide where it shared the garage with my disassembled TC/8752. TC/8752 was my first MG (also my first car) that I had owned sinceJanuary 1964. I had built up TC/8752 in 1964 as a ‘special’ with cycle guards, 13” & 15” wheels and a 1622 cc MGA engine.

If JJ agrees (Yes, of course!) details of this unique TC can be the basis of another article for Totally T-Type 2 magazine.

TC/8752 in 1966 at Riverside Raceway (Melbourne) quarter mile sprints.

When TC/9507 arrived in Adelaide it was drivable, but un-roadworthy, unregistered and was sand blasted all down the left-hand side that was caused by Cyclone Tracy. The engine in TC/9507 had been re-powered with a TF 1500 engine (XPEG 3548) and was fitted with a mix of 15” & 16” wheels that were chromed. The original engine (XPAG 10242) came with it in a wooden box.

When we moved back to Melbourne in 1978, TC/9507 went into storage and later that year TC/8752 was sold, in boxes, along with engine XPAG 10242.

Having to cope with the costs of two daughters school fees, a mortgage and establishing a new business TC/9507 remained in storage, unrestored, in our garage, for the next 19 years.

In January 1997 after a big garage clean up our girls suggested it was time to restore TC/9507 and restore it we did.

My plan was to have the major components restored, and new parts supplied by specialists irrespective of where they were located in the world. In my mind a specialist would do a better job because of their knowledge and volume of their business. The freight cost doing it this way would be offset by the quality of the work.

After many hours on my trusty Mac computer, using an Excel spread sheet program, parts were purchased from USA, UK and Australia. The body and chassis went off to Mike Sherrell in Perth and the mechanical work to Melbourne’s MG guru Ray Skewes.

In May 1998 the project was finished and TC/9507 was again on the road and registered as OWO 032, which was later changed to TC 9507 to match the chassis number.

TC/9507 arrives at home in Adelaide 1975.

TC/9507, at various times over the 20 years since I restored it, actually fits into all the TC classifications that Mike Sherrell highlights in “TCs FOREVER MORE!” as it is at various times a concourse car, a runner, a café racer, a touring car and a racer.

The article I have written is best read with a copy of Mike Sherrell’s ‘TCs FOREVER MORE!’ as I have linked the following comments, modifications and changes that have been made to TC/9507 using the page numbers as the reference.

The page number reference is shown at the start of each paragraph

5 FEW FACTORY FAULTS – Three more to add to the list:

SIDE SCREEN & TOOL BOX

The side screen box is lined with black felt, this may be ok for black weather equipment but it marks the later beige material of the side screens and why would you ever line a tool box with white felt?

SECURITY

The TC can easily be started and driven off by bridging the two fuses on the regulator with the spring clip that locates the regulator cover in position – No ignition key required!

WATER TEMPERATURE GAUGE

One has to ask why this was never fitted as a standard production item.

11 Mike details the remarkable performance of the Tomlinson TA/MPJG to win the 1939 Australian Grand Prix.What is even more impressive was that 15 years later this same superb handling pre-war TA chassis was still racing through asuccession ofowners. In 1954 it was fitted with a new lightweight single seat body and a supercharged XPAG TC engine by Curley Brydon who drove the car to finish second in the 1954 Australian Grand Prix at Southport in Queensland. Again, if JJ agrees, the later history of this TA can be the basis of another article for Totally T-Type 2 magazine in the future. (Yes, please!)

In the Chapter “LORE” Mike writes about the different forms of TCs that have developed over time – TC/9507 is a unique car as it represents all these different forms.

15 The CONCOURS CAR – If you don’t open the bonnet and look inside at the extractors, bigger SUs, K&N air filters, alloy tappet cover and side plate etc. refit the 19” wheels, the original bonnet and sides, weather equipment and radiator cap still looks as original as when it was produced in 1949. It would never win a club concourse competition but from a distance still looks like it could.

TC/9507 in TC section of an MGCC Victorian concourse event.

21 The RUNNERS – since 1998 TC/9507 has been a genuine and well used runner.

TC/9507 at Cowes, Phillip Island.

22 The CAFÉ RACERS – Remove the 19s, the full bonnet (weighs 20kg), strap on the aluminum bonnet (weighs only 4 kg), fit the 15” radial tyres, the reproduction pre-war racing radiator cap and the full tonneau cover and this full-bodied TC looks just as good as the more common cycle guard equipped café racer.

TC/9507 the “CONCOURS CAR”.

TC/9507 the “CAFÉ RACER”.

23 The RACERS – TC/9507 continues to perform well as a hill climb, sprint and regularity race car

TC/9507 The “HILL CLIMB CAR” at Rob Roy hill climb.

TC/9507 the “RACE CAR” at Phillip Island Grand Prix circuit.

41 TOURING IN A TC – TC/9507 continues to be a great touring, and long-distance touring car with its large capacity XPEG engine and high ratio Nissan differential.

TC/9507 the “TOURING CAR” at Strachan in Tasmania here with John Gillett’s K3030.

58 LUGGAGE RACK & the weatherproof ‘Rak-Bag’ is a strap on variant rather than the usual bolt on type.

TC/9507 with ‘strap on’ luggage rack and ‘Rak-Bag’ luggage container.

28 HIGHER RATIO DIFFS

The original 5.125 TC differential was replaced during the rebuild with a higher ratio 4.6 diff centre from the UK. Unfortunately, this excellent 4.6 diff from Roger Furneaux did not live long with the high torque XPEG when competing in sprint and hill climb events. It was replaced with a diff centre from a Nissan/Datsun Bluebird. There are two differential options from Nissan, the alloy carrier variant (from Nissan 510 Bluebird), with 4.1 ratio and the heavier duty steel carrier type (from Nissan B120 1200 Utility/pickup), 4.1 & 4.6 ratio that is fitted to TC/4134 race car.

Nissan has historically been the source of an improved steering box and engine valves for TCs but it is not often known that is an excellent supplier ofalternative replacement TC differentials to fit in the original TC axle housing.

Original 5.125 TC diff on the left, the replacement 4.1 Nissan diff on the right.

33 FRONT ANTI-ROLL BAR on TC/9507 is mounted directly to the axle rather than on to the spring plates

34 CENTRE LACE 19” WHEELS AND ‘OFFSET’.

TC/9507 is fitted with centre laced 15” wheels because there are more tyre options available for 15” than there are for 16” wheels that were used in the past. 70 profile is the minimum ratio for tyres that are permitted for historic racing in Australia by the regulatory authority CAMS. The tyres are currently 185 70 R 15 Pirelli P 6000s which are now being remade by Pirelli as this is a size that were used on the early Porsche 911 models. The original TC stub axles were upgraded with new spindles from Bob Grunau in Canada.

35 BRAKES are fitted with cast drums as a replacement for the original steel brake drums. A hydraulic brake light switch is fitted to the master cylinder replacing the original mechanical switch. Brake torque reaction cables are fitted from the top of the king pins and run back to the chassis.

38 The Panhard Rod that fitted TC/9507 to control the front axle location for competition events was sourced from Walter Prechsl in Germany

59 WIRING COVER in TC/9507 is fitted but it is split over the steering column for easy removal. Also fitted to the wiring cover is a simple toggle type indicator switch directly over the gear stick for easy operation. Because of the high compression, larger capacity engine, TC/9507 is fitted with a high torque starter motor and the electric starter switch that is required to operate the starter solenoid is mounted to the steering column bracket and the existing bracket clearance hole in the wiring cover allows for easy access.

61 CHASSIS

TC/9507 chassis before restoration in January 1997 and during restoration in December 1997.

KEEPING THE OIL IN

The over bored XPEG engine, which is now out to over 1600 cc, is fitted with lip seals front and rear and is oil leak free.

88 CLEAN AIR

The 1.5” SUs are fitted with K&N pancake type air cleaners when using the alloy bonnet and because of the clearance requirements a special fabricated alloy air cleaner manifold, modelled on the original TA type is used when the full bonnet is fitted.

TC/9507 air cleaner for larger 1.5” SUs and only used when the full bonnet is fitted.

115 The INTERIOR TRIM is from Collingburn (UK).

119 The WEATHER EQUIPMENT is again from Collingburn and the rear of the hood is fitted using press studs to allow for quick and easy removal for competition events.

121 ELECTRICS

The instruments were restored by John Marks’ Vintage Restorations (UK).

Dash board was supplied by Whitworth shop (USA) Centre Panel was restored by Whitworth shop (USA) Horn/Dip Switch was restored by Whitworth shop (USA)’

122 FUEL WARNING LIGHT is now used as the direction indicator telltale light.

The FWL is replaced by a much more accurate manually operated Rabone #1380 Folding boxwood 36” rule marked up with fuel level graduations.

Refer http://www.mg-tabc.org/library/TC-fuel-dipstick.htm

123 IGNITION/LIGHT SWITCH was restored by Whitworth shop (USA)

126 DISTRIBUTOR the original Lucas distributor has been replaced by a modern Bosch unit.

127 LIGHTING

Front

The period Lucas 700 headlights are fitted

with high performance halogen globes

from Classic and Vintage Globes (AU).

The front parking lamps are fitted with

direction indicators.

Rear

The two D tail/stop lights are both fitted with LED inserts that were sourced from Shade Tree Motors (USA).

The black bodied direction indicators are originally from a Triumph Daytona motor cycle and are mounted using existing holes in the chassis. The lenses were sanded back to remove the raised lettering and painted with special black lens spray so they blend in to the rear of the TC unlike others that are all ‘shiny amber and chrome’.

These indicator lights are easily sourced from a range of suppliers, just google “SHIN YO Indicator DUC STYLE”

134 & 135 RESTORATIONS

The following pics show TC/9507 body, sand blasted by Cyclone Tracy, before restoration January 1997 and as it is today after restoration in 1997-1998.

The most significant and cost effective change that I have made to TC/9507 is the addition of a foot brace for the left leg. It is simple, cheap to make, easy to install and is quickly removable if required. There is no more sliding around on the slippery shiny leather bench seat using the steering wheel and your elbow over the door for location during cornering. Remember seat belts, if fitted, are a restraint and not a ‘location device’.

Fit a foot brace and I guarantee you will increase your driving pleasure and your lap and hill climb times will improve.

TC/9507 foot brace for the left leg.

To install the foot brace you simply wind down the threaded rod, that is used to clamp the battery in position, through the battery box floor. You are then provided with an upper fastening location to bolt on the foot brace while the lower end is simple screwed into the floorboard as close as possible to the gearbox cover. The foot brace is made from folded 20mm wide steel bar.

If you are a serious driver or competitor you can add an addition heel brace for the right foot. This can be easily bolted through the floorboard in a position that suits you best under the accelerator pedal.

Other ‘must haves’ are a fire extinguisher (1 kg powder type), this is easily located on the floor in front of the passenger seat and a battery isolator switch.

The TC is a wonderful car and every one is an individual. Please follow Mike’s REAR ENDwords “get in your TC and drive it, as far, as fast and as often as you can”

You can email me at info(at)snowtyres.com.au {please substitute @ for (at)} if I can help with anything further.

“ALL THAT GLITTERS IS NOT GOLD” – A day on a rolling road (Part 3)

4 May

In the first two articles I spoke of the original problem with my XPEG engine, being poor cold starting and inconsistent tick over, especially when cold, and that I did not have a hot restart problem. I previously reported a number of problems, now resolved: twin carburettor mixtures different, wrong needle profile, insufficient advance at tick over, after-market air filters too small, weak valve springs, leaking head gasket and, significantly, a worn A2D4 distributor. The needles were GJ and were changed to #6 that has a slightly richer profile at station 3 (working rpm range). The distributor was replaced with a CSI electronic with 16 selectable advance curves. Curve 7 was selected initially and equated to 100 advance at tick over, 260 at 2000 rpm and 380 at 4000 rpm or higher. We still had an inconsistent tick over, but otherwise on-road performance was good. The spark plugs at this point were NGK BP6ES.

Subsequently I changed the advance curve to 4, which equated to 100 at tick over, 260 at 2000 rpm and 360 at 4000 rpm or higher. This seemed to improve tick over a bit, but otherwise no obvious road performance changes were discernible. It was now time to check out the other curve settings on a rolling road, and to measure torque and bhp (at the wheels in 3rd gear). I kept in mind the research done at Manchester (UK) University on a XPAG engine in laboratory conditions and wanted to see how I could use the published data to good effect on my engine without having sufficient engineering skills to do other than make improvements of the kind available to most historic car owners.

Obviously, the engine has to be in good condition and settings such as carburettors air intake & mixture, tappet clearances and plug gaps are correct (see below). My engine has +20 thou bores (suggesting one previous re-bore) with no discernible bore wear, piston rings and main and gudgeon bearings free from play, & cylinder pressures in the range 160-170 lb/in2. The profile of the camshaft is not known butlobe wear was negligible. Tappet clearance is 14 thou cold, static advance is 100, fuel is Shell V-Power (low ethanol), plugs are Bosch W7DC at 12 thou (oops!) and later 22 thou, a 5-speed gearbox and a standard 4.875:1 differential.

Curves 1, 3, 5, 9-16 were not tested. Max advance of curves 9-16 were 40 or 42 degrees & thought too high for standard XPEG engine; “wot” is wide open throttle at 4500 rpm. Hydrocarbon emissions were measured at the exhaust pipe exit. The key results can best be summarised in table form, below:

Key features of the results are summarised below.

  • Spark plug gap has a significant impact on emissions. The correct gap is important for fuel efficiency but not necessarily for bhp output – surprisingly.

  • Adrian of A B Garage recommends returning to NGK plugs, which I will do in due course. 

  • Curve 2 returned a substantial loss of bhp (17) & torque (63) above 3200 rpm.

  • Curve 4 with the wrong plug gap shows slightly higher bhp & torque, but emissions are high at idle.

  • Curve 4 with correct plug gap surprised us with slightly lower bhp & torque throughout the rev range, but much improved emissions! That is to say, more of the fuel was used in the combustion process.

  • Curve 6 shows a substantial loss of bhp & torque after 4000 rpm, but also spoilt by wrong plug gap.

  • Curve 7 shows a generally good bhp & torque profile.

  • Curve 8 shows a steady increase in bhp throughout, but there is an anomalous result at 3600 rpm, which we cannot explain.

  • An ignition advance of 260 or 280 from 2000 rpm proves beneficial.

  • The engine performs well at higher revs when set to 380 advance.

  • With regard to tick over, curves 4, 7 & 8 produced at fairly consistent tick over at 900 rpm and this was judged to be satisfactory. We obviously could not test a cold start, which was carried out the following day in my garage. 

  • Power output at 4000 rpm seemed a little low, although the original 63 bhp at the flywheel would have translated to about 50-52 bhp at the wheels. Probably got a few losses in an ageing transmission!

  • Torque is not as published, largely because we are measuring at the wheels in 3rd gear, and is an arithmetical calculation based on bhp and engine revs rather than being measured correctly. It is the relationship between different curves that is of interest in this exercise.

  • We also noted the car’s rev counter was inaccurate: a displayed 1100 rpm was actually 900 rpm, and a displayed 3000 rpm was actually 2600 rpm, an average error of about 15%.

The final decision as to which curve to use came down to either 4, 7 or 8. We decided that the anomaly in curve 8 results could be a computer glitch or, indeed, a CSI ignition programme glitch, so on balance curve 8 gave a slightly better performance throughout the useable rpm range than curve 4, albeit with slightly higher emissions at 4000 rpm. In practice on the road the useable revs tend to be in the range 1500 – 3000 rpm with a 5-speed gearbox, so the anomaly in curve 8 readings is not quite so important. We decided to set the distributor at curve 8.

I started with two problems: poor starting when cold and inconsistent tick over (cyclic variability). Were these now resolved? Yes, is the short answer; cold starting has improved but still requires several engine rotations, which may just be how I set the choke initially, and tick over is now smooth at approximately 900 rpm. I am well satisfied with the outcome and along the way have improved my knowledge of the combustion process in XPAG/XPEG engines running on modern ethanol fuels.

A combined set of graphs for curves 4, 7 & 8 follows.

Neil Wallace
March 2018

(Click image for bigger)


Pictured here is the interior of Paul Mellor’s TC0980. Paul has now completed a chassis up rebuild on the car to a very high standard. The Dashboard is the original that was walnut veneered and polished by a friend of Paul’s who has a furniture making business. The Leather hides came from UK Hides near Brooklands and Paul’s friend and mechanic Mr John Smith completed the trim. He used the old trim as templates. The rebuild took 13 months and is complete except for the hood, which is expected any day.

Ramblings/Reminiscences of MG 5557

3 May

It was the summer of 1964 and I was driving back from a dinner/dance at Brighton Uni in my TA (MG 5557 – chassis number TA1679). Coming out on to the A23 it overheated badly (manifold glowing!) – a top hose had burst. The roadside repairs were carried out with ‘Hermetite’, (jointing compound), a bicycle inner-tube and the hose was tied with a stocking.

After waiting for it to cool down, the water level was topped up with water from a remote farm horse trough. Then, with fingers crossed and bated breath, I started the car, but Oh dear!…… knock, knock, knock, a big end had run.

We carried on with gentle acceleration, putting as little strain on the journal as possible. With luck and a fair wind, we made it back to Chiswick (West London), where I dropped off my wife to be, and I then headed back to my home in Ruislip, Middlesex without either breaking the crankshaft or the big-end journal.

After two weeks of scouring the pages of Exchange & Mart and various other publications, I found an early TC which was located in a house in Rochester, just off the river Medway. Unfortunately, nobody was around to loan me a car that weekend, so we risked driving MG 5557 across London with a slightly less noisy big-end, courtesy of STP (oil additive).

The journey through the City and the East End was fairly uneventful but there was bad news on arrival in Rochester. The owner of the TC came out to tell us that he had needed the space and had pushed the car down a bank and into the mud on the Medway. Undeterred, a handy lorry and driver were searched out and pressed into work.

Two hours or so later, the engine and gearbox were out and stashed behind the TA’s seat, also any other spares we could cram into MG 5557. These included a bonnet, for which a novel way of packing was dreamt up (it was simply fitted over the bonnet of 5557) and the headlamps and instruments, which were accommodated in the passenger footwell. All this for £12!!!!

We then set off for home, hoping that the big-end would survive. (I don’t think you could drive through London nowadays, looking and sounding as we did!). We arrived in Ruislip very late that night.

The following day, the engines were swapped over and a few weeks’ later I sold the car to a friend who had helped me.

The picture of the car with the rather substantial radiator muff was taken outside Arlington Park House in Chiswick. The other was taken in my parents’ drive, just before starting work on changing the engines over.

The person to whom I sold the car was a Mr John Cope and he later sold it to someone in South Ruislip. The car is now in the USA with Dennis Klemm.

I hope that this little story will be of interest and not too boring. It might hopefully arouse other memories of use and abuse.

I now have another TA (LTR 573 – chassis number TA1861). This car is the one that starred in Heartbeat, the TV series.

Peter Dennis

TA1679 sporting a rather substantial radiator muff (picture taken in the winter of 1964).

TA1679….with extra TC bonnet removed!

TA1679 – now with Dennis Klemm in the US.

MG TA & TB Wiring Diagrams in Colour

2 May

(Click images for bigger)

Manchester XPAG Tests Fuel and Tuning – Part 2: Choice of Fuel & Tuning Carburettors

2 May

Introduction

In the previous article I suggested steps that could be taken to mitigate the problems a number of classic MG owners suffer from: Weak Running, where the engine stops in slow moving traffic, especially on hot days, and the Hot Restart problem where a hot engine cannot be restarted after stopping for 5 – 10 minutes. The Manchester XPAG tests identified a further problem with modern petrol: Slow Combustion. Particularly at normal road driving speeds and with high throttle settings, modern fuel appears to burn too slowly, overheating the valves, cylinder head and exhaust system. This in turn increases under bonnet temperature, making the Weak Running problem worse.

In this article I will discuss how both by the careful choice of petrol and by re-tuning the carburettors, the severity of the Slow Combustion problem can be reduced.

The implication of these results is that the normal additives used to enhance the octane rating are possibly to blame for Slow Combustion and fuels that use ethanol or other chemicals as an octane enhancer perform better.

Beware! Before using ethanol blended petrol in your classic car, read this article first.

Remember that our cars are all different and the severity of the problems experienced by owners varies immensely, even between the same models of car. The suggestions in these articles should be taken just as that, suggestions for people to try; they are not intended as solutions to be blindly adopted. While the specific details only apply to the 1 ¼” carburettors fitted to the XPAG engine, the general principles apply to all SU carburettors.

Slow Combustion

Previous articles described how poor mixing of the air and petrol in the carburettor can lead to a problem called Cyclic Variability. This is a condition where, in every cylinder, the timing of each combustion cycle can vary significantly cycle by cycle, leading to some cycles firing too early, or pinking, and others firing too late, resulting in very hot gases and unburned fuel leaving the cylinder. It is as though something is making huge adjustments to the ignition timing every time the engine fires.

Carbon monoxide (CO) in the exhaust gases is an indication of poor combustion. CO isproduced when there is insufficient oxygen present to burn the carbon to carbon dioxide (CO2). In an engine that is running rich, insufficient oxygen is inducted with the fuel and this will lead to high levels of CO in the exhaust gases. However, at Manchester both the mixture and timing of the engine were set to the optimum for each test. Therefore, the high levels of CO are a direct indicator of poor combustion caused by imperfect mixing of the air and fuel in the cylinder – one cause of Cyclic Variability.

The measurements of the SU suction piston heights at Manchester provided an indication of the scale of this problem, particularly when using full throttle settings below 3,000 rpm. In addition, there was a strong correlation between the degree of enrichment seen below 3,000 rpm on full throttle and the levels of CO in the exhaust gasses for the different fuels, confirming the link between the Slow Combustion problem and poor combustion.

Choice of petrol

At Manchester 9 different fuels were tested, along with a 20% kerosene mix and the use of a nebulizer to improve petrol atomisation and mixing. Each of these combinations produced different levels of CO. As the Slow Combustion problem appeared at its worst on full throttle between 2,000 and 3,000 rpm, the diagram shows the average CO levels in the exhaust gas for each fuel or combination for these tests. The lower thelevels of CO, the better that sample of fuel is burning. The grey bars show the special fuels we tested and the orange bars the ones containing ethanol.

These results show significant differences in the levels of CO between the different fuels. The top performing fuel is the Sunoco Optima 98 that was also rated highly as not suffering from the weak running problem.

Of the top 6 best performing fuels, three were ethanol blended, one an ethanol blended Super grade, came in 3rd. Remember Cleveland Discol that was introduced in 1928 and mentioned in the first article? This fuel contained alcohol (ethanol) and these findings support the manufacturer’s claim that it “contributed to a brilliant performance and better mileage because it keeps the engines cooler and cleaner”.

The following diagram shows the average relationship between unburned hydrocarbons in the exhaust gas against exhaust temperature for the 2,000 to 2,750 rpm range. As the engine was fully tuned for each test, high levels of unburned hydrocarbons reflect poor combustion. As might be expected, the less of the fuel that has burned the lower the gas temperatures and the less efficiently the engine is running.

It is interesting to note at the bottom right hand of the graph, the 95 Octane + foil and 95 Octane + 5:1 kero both burn better than the 95 Octane on its own. Adding kerosene certainly improves the combustion, suggesting any fears it will not burn are unfounded.

The three red tests at the top right of the graph show that increasing the volume of ethanol in the petrol both improves combustion and reduces exhaust temperatures as more hydrocarbons are replaced by oxygen molecules. However, before filling up your car with an ethanol blended fuel, read the warning later in this article.

Unfortunately, these findings show that not all Super Grade fuels performed as well. The Super grade with ethanol produced 1.55 ppm CO while a different brand of Super grade without ethanol produced 4.16 ppm CO – more than double.

One question most people will ask is “did you see any difference in power output between the different brands?” The answer is yes. The average full throttle power output of the test XPAG between 2,000 and 2,750 rpm was 25.2 BHP; the difference in power output between the worst performing petrol and best was 1 BHP. While measurable, this difference is small and would not be noticed during normal road driving. However, this measurement wasobtained for an engine that was fully retuned for each fuel and rev setting. Different fuels showed different levels of enrichment due to the Slow Combustion problem. When an engine is running rich, it produces less power. Hence, when used on the road and where the engine is not being continually re-tuned, as in the tests, these fuels will produce less power than the tests predict.

The fuels that gave the maximum average power output were Sunoco Optima 98 and the Branded 95 Octane (Batch 2) with nebulizer.One surprising result is that adding 20% kerosene to the 95 Octane (Batch 2) reduced the CO emissions by nearly 50%. However, it also gave the lowest power output. It is not clear why adding kerosene should significantly improve burning and reduce the effect of Slow Combustion while, at the same time, reducing power output. The power reduction is not caused by the kerosene failing to burn properly, the level of unburned hydrocarbons in the exhaust (141 ppm) was slightly less than that of petrol on its own (149 ppm), suggesting peoples’ worries about the kerosene not burning are unfounded.

This test was run with a very high concentration of kerosene (1part kerosene to 5 parts petrol or 20%). Adding kerosene to standard fuel is perhaps something worth trying. Best to start with lower concentrations, e.g. 5% kerosene (1part kerosene in 20 parts petrol) and increase it if it appears to improve matters. Owners of high compression engines need to take care as adding kerosene also reduces the octane rating and could cause pinking. This is discussed more fully in the next article.

These results demonstrated differences in the performance of different brands and grades of petrol in the XPAG engine. High ethanol content fuels appear to perform best, but they bring with them another set of problems. Trying different fuels to find one that best suits your car, is not easy. Look at the difference between the two batches of the same brand of 95 Octane petrol, both bought within days of each other in Manchester at a filling station close to the University. The one without ethanol burned worse producing 50% more CO but with an exhaust gas temperature 50oC lower than the ethanol blended batch. Also, remember the composition of the same brand and grade of petrol will vary across the country.

However, for normal driving, remember the advice that was given in the last article; to avoid the Slow Combustion problem, do not open the throttle fully below 3,000 rpm. If you wish to accelerate, select a lower gear first. Conversely, if you are cruising in 3rd or 2nd gear and your revs are above 3,000 rpm you should change UP to a higher gear.

Nebulizer

A number of people have asked about the nebulizer and could it be used in a road going car? Unfortunately, the answer is no, it would not be practical.

The nebulizer consisted of a special nickel foil fitted between the carburettor and inlet manifold. The holes in this foil were around 8 micrometres in diameter, the same size as the dropletsproduced by afuel injectionsystem. As the inducted mixture passed through the foil, the droplets of petrol were forced to break up with the resulting turbulence improving the mixing.

Two things were special about this foil. Firstly, it was very thin and secondly, it had a 70% Free Area, i.e. the holes occupied 70% of the area of the foil, or the material of the foil only reduced the overall area of the inlet by 30%. As a result, the air flowing into the engine was virtually unaffected by this foil. A wire mesh would not have worked in the same way as they typically have a Free Area of only 30% – 40%. Using a mesh would have reduced performance by effectively reducing the diameter of the carburettor from 1 ¼” to under 1”.

Unless the air and petrol entering the engine can be filtered to remove any particles greater than 8 micrometres in diameter, such a foil would soon block and choke the engine. The reason it cannot be used for normal road driving.

Ethanol Blended Petrol

There have been numerous articles on the dangers of ethanol blended petrol. I will only discuss two aspects here, enleanment and water absorption.

Enleanment

Ethanol contains chemically bound oxygen molecules which is probably why it burns better in the XPAG. The oxygen is contained with the carbon and hydrogen molecules rather than having to rely on the turbulent mixing of the petrol and air. However, to offset this, a richer mixture is needed than with an unblended petrol.

The tests at Manchester used three ethanol blended fuels, two from the UK and E10 purchased in France. The good news is that none of these fuels showed significant degrees of enleanment. However, if you are planning to use E10, the advice is to enrichen the mixture by 1 – 2 flats on the jet adjusting nuts and keep an eye on the plug colour to ensure the mixture is correct.

Water Absorption

Separate tests have shown this poses a serious threat.

Ethanol blended fuel attracts and absorbs moisture from the atmosphere and once a certain concentration of water is reached, the ethanol/ water mix will phase separate from the fuel. Under normal circumstances, the risk of this is relatively small. However, storing your car forlong periods with its tank filled with an ethanol blended fuel poses a greater risk.

What is a more serious threat is that the fuel systems of classic MGs are far from waterproof. The filler cap is at the top of the fuel tank so rain can easily get in. The float chambers have ticklers on them that will also allow water in.

Even if only one droplet of rain gets into ethanol blended petrol, it will absorb ethanol from the petrol and sink to the bottom of the tank or float chamber. This droplet of water/ethanol mix is highly corrosive and will probably remain in the same place, corroding the metal, especially if the car is not being used.

I am sure you can imagine how shocked I was when I opened the storage container used to hold a test sample of steel and a section of float chamber in a water/ethanol mix for around 6 months. Yes, they are still in there hidden by the rusty water mix!

The before and after pictures below show a piece of mild steel (left) and a section of a float chamber right that have been stored in water that had previously been mixed with E10. The degree of corrosion of both the steel and aluminium is extreme and it is hard to believe these are pictures of the same pieces of metal taken only 6 months apart.

While these are test samples, the problem shows itself in real life. This picture shows similar corrosion inside one of my float chambers, probably caused by water getting in through the tickler pin when driving in the wet. When I first looked into the float chamber, there was what looked like a worm, sitting underneath the petrol at where the corrosion is. This was almost certainly a small quantity of water.

For the past 6 years, I believed I had only been using an ethanol free, super grade petrol. This corrosion in my float chamber shows that, unbeknown to me, at some time, I must have filled up with an ethanol blended petrol.

Once a small quantity of water settles at the bottom of the petrol tank or float chambers, it will sit there permanently absorbing ethanol from the petrol and corroding the metal.

Unfortunately, the additives sold to protect fuel systems against ethanol have no effect; whilst they will mix with the petrol, they will not mix with the ethanol/water mixture.

The only practical solution to avoid this problem is to use a petrol known to be ethanol free, such as Sunoco Optima 98, or to drain the petrol tank and float chambers once a year and allow them to dry to ensure no water / ethanol mix remains. Perhaps it is also time to think about slosh coating your petrol tank, with an ethanol resistant coating, as this may help protect it.

Tuning the Carburettor

When race tuning an engine, the aim is to get the correct mixture containing as much liquid petrol as possible, into the cylinder to maximise the power output. Typically, engines are run on full throttle, high revs when they are raced. In stark contrast, full power, high revs is rarely used when driving on public roads. When driving on the road an XPAG will mostly run between 2,000 and 3,000 rpm on part throttle. Unfortunately, these are the conditions where the Slow Combustion problem is at its worst.

The steps taken to race tune an engine, such as matching the manifolds, gas flowing the cylinder head, etc., all reduce the turbulence and mixing of air and fuel flowing into the cylinder, making the Cyclic Variability and Slow Combustion problem worse. Ironically, Cyclic Variability can also reduce power output and it is possible, that when running on modern fuel, a mildly race tuned engine produces less power at road driving speeds than an un-tuned one would.

This effect is clearly shown in the tests using the nebulizer. The nebulizer was fitted between the carburettor and inlet manifold where it forced the inducted petrol to break up into small droplets approximately 8 microns in size, around the size produced by fuel injection systems. It did this at the expense of restricting the airflow into the engine, something to be avoided in race tuned engines.

A comparison of the power output using the same fuel and same level of tune showed the nebulizer IMPROVED the power output by 1% below 3,000 rpm. Above 3,000 rpm where Slow Combustion is not a problem, the restricted airflow reduced the power output.

This again points to the Slow Combustion problem being the result of Cyclic Variability caused by poor atomisation and dispersion of the petrol in the inlet manifold and cylinder. It also shows that, for road use, improving atomisation and dispersion can give a power gain, even at the expense of restricting the airflow into the engine.

The next sections suggest how the carburettor can be tuned to improve fuel atomisation by setting the petrol height in the jet and by ensuring the correct suction piston/spring combination is used.

Petrol height in the jet

The petrol height in the jet is controlled by the weight of the float and by the setting of the forks in the float chamber. Normally, this is adjusted by inserting a rod between the lid face and the inside curve of the hinged lever and bending the lever. When set correctly the needle valve should be just closed when the forks meet the rod. With the H type float chamber use a 5/16 inch rod; with the HS type with a hinged nylon float use a 1/8 in rod.

There is a problem. This time not caused by modern petrol! With an HS type of float chamber and the correct fork setting, a float weighing 28gm to 30gm is needed to achieve the correct fuel level of 3/16” below the jet bridge (approximately half way between 1/8” and 5/16” recommended in the factory handbook for the TC). The original brass floats only weigh 24gm which gives a petrol level below the jet bridge of 3/8” (as normally specified for SU carburettors). Modern brass floats can weigh as little as 22gm and the plastic stay-up floats 20gm. (Note: All floats made by Burlen are to the original drawing specification of 20-24 grams).

A lower petrol level in the jet has a negative effect on fuel atomisation and dispersion. The partial vacuum in the choke has to both raise the level of the fuel to the top of the jet and provide the energy to atomise it as it is sucked out of the jet. A lower level of petrol in the jet, requires more force to raise it to the top of the jet, reducing the energy that is available to break it into droplets.

Although no specific tests were run at Manchester, the first set of tests run by the students in 2013 used the standard weight floats and fork settings, which would have given a petrol height in the jet about 3/8” to 1/2” below the jet bridge. The second set of tests were runwith standard fork settings but using heavier floats to give a fuel height of 3/16” below the jet bridge. The latter tests showed an average increase in power output around 5% for three different fuels, however, this figure should be taken with caution as these tests were run many months apart and other factors may have influenced the measurements.

A photograph of the carburettor taken during the first set of tests shows the (artificially coloured red) petrol leaving the jet as a stream rather than a dispersed mist. Something not seen in the second set of tests.

Unfortunately, it is not possible to achieve the fuel level recommended by MG in the jet using the lighter floats. While it is possible to bend the forks up to raise the fuel level in the jet or down to lower it, care must be taken not to bend them up too far or the float will foul the chamber lid and cause flooding. Should you adjust the forks, it is worth inserting a pencil through the bolt hole in the lid and the centre of the float to check it does not foul the pivot support (highlighted on the picture by the red circle) before the needle valve shuts off.

Be careful to position the float chamber with connecting arm at right angles to the carburettor body. While it is tempting to move the float chamber closer to the engine to make it easier to remove the float, this both exposes it to more heat and lowers the fuel level in the jet.

To achieve the MG recommended setting, I carefully add solder to brass floats to increase their weight to 28gm – 30gm using digital kitchen scales to measure the weight. As stay-up floats are solid, it may be possible to put self-tapping screws into their base to increase their weight.

It is also very important that the float chambers are open to atmospheric. It is easy to think the purpose of pipes fitted to the top of the float chambers is to remove any petrol that overflows. This is not strictly true, they also act as breather pipes allowing the air pressure in the float chamber to remain at atmospheric. Care must be taken to ensure that these pipes are not blocked and the correct stepped washer is fitted between the lid of the float chamber and the boss on the pipe.

Suction Piston weight/spring force

Early TCs had fixed weight suction pistons of 8.5oz (240gm). Later cars 4oz (110gm) pistons and either a “red” spring which gives downward force of 4.5oz when the suction piston is closed or a “light blue” spring which gives a downwards force of 2.5oz. These springs are fitted on top of the suction piston to increase its effective closed weight to either 8.5oz or 6.5oz.

If it has not worn off, springs can be identified by a coloured band on one end.

The advantage of using the “light blue” spring is that it reduces the choking effect of the carburettor allowing more air to flow through it at high loads/ revs and is one modification favoured when race tuning engines. The disadvantage for road use is that it reduces the velocity of the air flow through the choke, which in turn reduces fuel atomisation and dispersion. Either a fixed weight piston or a light piston with the red spring fitted is suggested for road use.

It is understood that some remanufactured carburettors are fitted with “light blue” springs, so if you have new carburettors on your car, it may be worth removing the suction chambers and checking.

Effect of piston weight on mixture

When I was researching the effect of different springs on mixture, I found very little information on the internet; the purpose of this section is to clarify this point. NOTE: It is worth having read the article on Carburettors before continuing.

Suction piston weight affects the mixture in two opposing ways:

* The lighter the piston, the higher it floats for a given volume of air passing through the carburettor. This both reduces the choking effect of piston and increases the size of the annulus between the needle and jet…… making the mixture richer.

* However, the pressure difference between the choke and atmospheric is reduced, decreasing the force that is pushing the petrol out of the jet…… making the mixture weaker.

The following graph shows the relative effects on mixture between the fixed weight piston, a lighter piston with the blue spring and a lighter piston with the red spring for the 1 ¼” SU Carburettor

Both the blue and red springs change the mixture profile with increasing revs/load in the same way as changing the needle would. However, fitting a blue spring also makes the baseline mixture weaker.

Over the normal range of piston heights used for driving on the road, the ES needle can be used in all three cases. Carburettors fitted with a blue spring can be made richer by screwing out the jet adjusting nut which will move the whole blue curve upwards. Similarly, for those fitted with red springs, screwing the jet adjusting nut in, will weaken the mixture.

One problem with the blue spring is that when using the ES needle, the mixture becomes weaker as the engine revs and load increase. A more conservative approach is for the mixture to become richer as the extra petrol helps keep the valves cooler, helping to prevent damage to the engine. Using a red spring produces a more conservative mixture curve than with the blue spring.

1250cc MG TF 1½ inch carburettors

At this point it is worth mentioning that all original MG TFs were fitted with 1½” carburettors with “light blue springs”, rather than the 1¼” carburettors that were fitted to earlier T-Types. The findings from Manchester support the comments of the critics, who at the time said the bigger carburettors were not needed. Unfortunately, the engineers were overruled by the marketing people.

With these bigger carburettors, as the suction piston rises, the aperture is more like a slit than the taller, squarer opening would be in the 1¼” carburettors for the same throttle setting. With the 1½” carburettors, it is probably better to keep the blue springs to produce a squarer aperture and better mixing.

Conclusion

This article has discussed the Slow Burning problem which appears to be due to high levels of Cyclic Variability caused by poor atomisation and mixing of the petrol in the carburettor. It appears as though one possible cause is due to the chemicals added to petrol to boost its octane rating. It also suggests that steps to race tune an engine could make matters worse for road use.

The Manchester tests showed that with the exception of the specialist Sunoco Optima 98 petrol, the best performing, commercially available fuels are ones that used ethanol to boost the octane rating. This is not surprising as ethanol contains chemically bound oxygen, improving the oxygen/carbon/hydrogen mixing in the cylinder. Unfortunately, the dangers of any water in the fuel system when using ethanol blended fuels is very clear.

As Cyclic Variability causes an engine to run slightly rough, owners should choose the fuel on which the engine runs most smoothly; particularly on full throttle below 3,000 rpm. An indication of lower levels of cyclic variability.

Although Sunoco Optima 98 is around twice the price of pump fuel, its low volatility below 50oC, improved running characteristics, guarantee that it does not contain ethanol and long storage lifetime make it a fuel of choice for low mileage vehicles. It

can be ordered direct from the Anglo American Oil Company via their web shop www.aaoil.co.uk or by telephone on 01929 551557. Be aware, the law limits the amount of petrol that can be stored in a garage, or anywhere within six metres of a dwelling to 30 litres.

Adding around 5% – 10% kerosene to pump fuel reduces its volatility below 50oC and, it is not clear why, also reduces the degree of the Slow Burning problem. Care still needs to be taken to try to buy ethanol free petrol and owners of high compression engines must watch out for pinking as kerosene reduces octane rating.

If you live in the UK, remember you can legally add kerosene to petrol for cars produced before 1956, but you will need to apply to HM Customs and Excise for a Concession. Write to:

Mr John Loughney, Excise, Stamps and Money Businesses
HM Revenue & Customs
3rd Floor West
Ralli Quays
3 Stanley Street
Salford
M60 9LA

…….requesting a “General Licence to mix hydrocarbon oils under Regulation 43 of the Hydrocarbon Oil Regulations 1973 (SI 1973/1311)” giving your name, address, model and dates of production of the model of your vehicle.

Finally, the article discusses how the SU Carburettors can be tuned to improve fuel atomisation and dispersion by adjusting the petrol height in the jet and by choice of suction piston spring.

Ultimately, reducing the degree of the Slow Burning problem will lower exhaust temperatures, helping to protect the engine from burned valves and damage to the cylinder head. Lower exhaust temperatures will also help keep the under-bonnet area cooler reducing the severity of the Weak Running problem.

Paul Ireland

TB2019

1 May

MG TB 80th Anniversary 1939 – 2019
Newsletter 1 and Outline Program

Hello TB owner,

We now have 8 people who have expressed a keen interest in joining with other TB owners on an event to mark the 80th anniversary of our great cars. We realise this is not a big proportion of the 379 cars originally made but we think it is enough to make an event worthwhile and there is a good chance that others will join us as planning of the event progresses.

We have been looking at the different suggestions we have received, along with our own ideas and have come up with the following outline for a “flexible” weekend event.

The basic idea is for a weekend event from Friday to Monday where entrants would be able to book to join at any time such as:-

Friday afternoon / evening at the hotel
Saturday morning at the hotel before departure, at a mid-run stop (if there is one), at destination or back at hotel
Sunday at Hotel before departure, at mid run stop (if there is one) or at destination.

Similarly, entrants would be able to leave:-

At the end of Saturday afternoon before or after returning to the hotel, after the evening meal on Saturday or any time on Sunday or Monday.

Whilst we would like people to stay from Friday to at least Sunday we mainly want to see as many TBs together as we can.

If there is not enough interest for the whole weekend, one possibility would be to join in with another car (T-Type?) event on Sunday with Saturday as “TB” day.

The option exists to join in with a I day event such as the MGOCC Wings Run or the MGCC T Party for example and to build our weekend around them.

In order to plan an event that suits as many people as possible could you all reply to Mike & Jeff with your preferences from the details below and in particular a note on the following points would help us:

  1. Would you expect to spend the whole weekend on the event?

  2. Have you a preference relating to the overall locations noted, i.e. Cotswolds or Suffolk coast?

  3. Would joining in with a club 1 day event appeal to you or would you prefer that we did our own thing for TB’s only?

  4. Have you a suggestion for an alternative location?

We appreciate your answers are made with good intent but circumstances may change so any information given would be used on that basis.

Kind Regards
Jeff TB0489 & Mike TB0457


Location for the event

Option 1

The main area we have concluded as a suitable base is the Cotswolds to Banbury area, which is easily accessible from all parts of the UK and from the cross-channel ports.

Places of interest we have considered from this area are:

Black Country Museum.
Bletchley Park.
British Motor Museum.
Heritage Motor centre wings & wheels weekend (attending one day only).
40s weekend event such as Wartime in the Cotswolds (attending one day only).
Bourton on the Water.
Motor Museum
Model Village
Model Railway Exhibition
Blenheim Palace.
Croome.

Option 2

Another area suggested is Southwold/Aldeburgh, Suffolk, it is a lovely area with some lovely driving roads for trips. It is an area not regularly frequented by classic car trips so may be relatively unexplored by many, the downside of this area is that it is not so easily accessible from most parts of the UK.

Places of interest for this area are:

Sutton Hoo burials and museum,
RSPB Minsmere,
Adnams brewery,
Walberswick,
Heveningham Hall country fair/car show (30/6 – 1/7 in 2018),
Southwold seaside resort, pier etc
Orford Ness nature reserve and War Department experimental area.

Suggested Outline Program

Friday

Arrive at hotel
welcome drinks
evening meal

Saturday

Start around 10.00 run (possibly with mid-morning stop) to a place of interest
Lunch get together around 12.30 – 13.00
People to depart when they want to return to hotel for drinks and meal

Sunday

Depart around 10.00 run (possibly with mid- morning stop) to a place of interest
Lunch get together around 12.30 – 13.00
People to depart when they want to return to hotel (or depart for home) for drinks and meal

Monday

Depart around 10.00 short run to a place of interest

Websites for Places of Interest

Option 1

Black Country Museum http://www.bclm.co.uk
Bletchley Park https://bletchleypark.org.uk
British Motor Museum https://www.britishmotormuseum.co.uk
Heritage Motor centre wings & wheels weekend http://bicesterheritage.co.uk/events
Wartime in the Cotswolds 
https://www.gwsr.com/Wartime_in_the_Cotswolds__28th29th_April_2018–post–13.html

Bourton on the water:

Motor Museum, http://www.cotswoldmotoringmuseum.co.uk
Model Village, http://www.themodelvillage.com/
Model Railway Exhibition http://www.bourtonmodelrailway.co.uk/exhibition.irs
Blenheim Palace https://www.blenheimpalace.com
Croome https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/croome

Option 2

Sutton Hoo burials and museum https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/sutton-hoo
RSPB Minsmere https://www.rspb.org.uk/reserves-and-events/reserves-a-z/minsmere
Adnams Brewery https://tours.adnams.co.uk
Southwold https://www.exploresouthwold.co.uk
Walberswick https://www.explorewalberswick.co.uk/
Heveningham Hall country fair/ car show (30/6 – 1/7 in 2018), 
http://www.countryfair.co.uk
Suffolk coast https://www.thesuffolkcoast.co.uk/explore-suffolk
Orford Ness https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/orford-ness-national-nature-reserve

Ed’s note:

Jeff Townsend jeff.townsend(at)hotmail.co.uk
Mike Inglehearn mingle54(at)btinternet.com

For both addresses please substitute @ for (at).

Mike’s TB is pictured below.

The Editor

1 May

Welcome to Issue 48!

Spring made a brief appearance in the UK in mid-April with almost high-summer temperatures for a few days, but then retreated to serve up wet and windy weather with below average temperatures. It’s all to do with the Jet Stream, about which I know little – only that, if it is in a favourable position we get good weather.

As I pen this editorial I am hoping that the Jet Stream will be kind to us by the middle of May, because this is when we are travelling to Bakewell in Derbyshire to join the MG Octagon Car Club’s ‘Founder’s Weekend’. This weekend is held every May in memory of Harry Crutchley, who founded the MG Octagon Car Club. Harry started the Club with a small group of pre-1956 MG enthusiasts in the Stafford area and built it up into a worldwide organisation. He had the foresight to realise that the retailing of spare parts for members would be both an added draw for membership recruitment as well as a useful service to members in enabling them to keep their cars on the road.

Planning for the Tour of the Cotswolds continues apace and we have now got a design for the rally plates. It actually took some time to get permission to use the Cotswolds AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty) logo, due to a change in personnel in the Cotswolds Conservation Board and it instilled in me the need to build in plenty of time for delays when putting these tours together.

It’s subscriptions renewal time for those who have opted to receive the printed copy of the magazine. Subscribers who are not on e-mail will find a renewal notice with this issue, but in a few cases where payment has been made already there won’t be one. For the others, renewals have been sent by e-mail and payments have been arriving on a daily basis. The subscription has been held at £15 (UK), but for EU and Rest of World, the subs have been reduced to £20 and £25 respectively.

In the previous issue, I published an aerial photo of a gathering of TFs, which was said to have been taken at a meet in Victoria, British Columbia. I incorrectly captioned this as a gathering of 50 TFs, but the number was actually 41. This prompted a couple of e-mails from Australia, which told me that the photo was actually taken at the Werribee Mansion in the outer suburbs of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia and marked the 50th Anniversary of the TF.

My information which led to the publication of the aerial photo came from Canada, but the stated location by the person who e-mailed me was clearly incorrect. On reflection, I can see how the mix-up possibly occurred (two Victoria’s, albeit thousands of miles apart!) but I apologise both for getting the number wrong and more importantly, for getting the location wrong.

Again, in the previous issue, I said that I had written to the Head of Data Protection in DVLA about the Agency’s refusal to offer its previously advertised service of providing details of past owners. Having received a reply from somebody in what I would term the general correspondence section of the DVLA, I said that I would write to my Member of Parliament. I thought about this and came to the conclusion that as my MP is extremely busy right now in his role of “Chief Brexiteer” it would be unwise to trouble him. I therefore wrote again to the Head of Data Protection on the 11th April with the message that as I had initially written to him I would have expected to have received a reply from him.

The silence was deafening until I received a letter dated 1st May from the Senior Vehicle Data Protection Policy Manager telling me that my letter had only just reached his department. All very strange, because I have evidence that my letter of 11th April was received and signed for on 13th April!

I leave you with two rather splendid pictures of Paul Mellor’s TC0980. Paul has just completed a chassis up rebuild of the car to a very high standard. There is a picture of the interior later in this issue. Paul tells me that the car is going to be featured shortly in Classic and Sportscar.

JOHN JAMES


DISCLAIMER BY THE EDITOR

Totally T-Type 2 is produced totally on a voluntary basis and is available on the website www.ttypes.org on a totally FREE basis. Its primary purpose is to help T-Type owners through articles of a technical nature and point them in the direction of recommended service and spares suppliers.

Articles are published in good faith but I cannot accept responsibility or legal liability and in respect of contents, liability is expressly disclaimed.