Bits & Pieces

Number plates

I’ve recently received the front number plate for my J2 which I ordered from Tippers in St Austell, Cornwall. I have the back one – it’s the original – but I remember, going back 56 years ago as a 19 year-old youth, that I thought that a self-adhesive registration on the front apron looked “cool” (was the expression “cool” used in those days?), so I discarded the original front number plate. It must be out there somewhere, and could be in the loft at any one of three previous addresses.

Anyhow, the prospects of finding it after all these years is zero, so I’ve had to buy a replacement.

Tippers was established in 1932 and claims to be the only remaining manufacturer to use the original equipment and techniques to make fully authentic registration plates for classic, vintage and veteran vehicles.

I received good service from this company, so I thought I would pass their details on. Website is:

Paint code (TD2399)

I received an enquiry from New Zealand asking for the paint code of Huw Davies’ car (this was the car in the article Finding and buying a cheap T-Type, what possibly could go wrong? in the August issue of TTT 2). The paint code used was RAL1015 light ivory. It was the closest that Huw could find to match the colour of the car when he acquired it. It was ‘off the shelf’ i. e. it did not need mixing.


This is an interesting piece of kit sent in by Steve Tayler in Alberta.  TC9903, whose blasted and freshly painted chassis awaiting the start of  restoration is shown in the picture, was a Home Market car imported into Canada from Terry Bone about 44 years ago. The UK registration number was HGB 508 (Glasgow). It was purchased as a restored car but was a bit rough, although quite useable. Steve has owned it for 42 years and is just now embarking on a complete restoration. It has sat by patiently waiting while he restored his other cars and bikes. Other cars are a ’51 TD and a ’53 TF.


Another Home Market TC under restoration, an early 1946 car, originally registered MG 6950, is in the US with Joel Stager.

It has taken Joel more years than he would have liked to get to this point, but earning a living and kids have been real constraints. The good news is that there has been lots of progress since retirement.

Two Airline Coupes – the first, PA0286 and the second last, TA0355

Col Schiller in Queensland kindly sent me some photos of his two Airline Coupes.

Many TTT 2 readers will be familiar with TA0355 (MG 4952) as it was featured in Issue 13 (August 2012).

Col says that both cars will fit on his truck – here’s how!

Petrol leaking from the fuel cap on tight right hand turns

The following has been received from Lionel Uden:

“At a recent club meet I mentioned the annoying problem of petrol leaking out of the fuel cap when taking a tight right-hand turn. Even with only half filling the tank it still occurred.

One member (Simon) said he had no problem. He had fitted his fuel cap with a circular cork washer. Another member (Clive) had fitted a neoprene washer to his and had no problems even with a full tank.

I decided to try both. First up, Simon’s solution – a cork washer. It improved things but not 100%. Clive then sent me a neoprene washer which he had obtained from a friend.

With a new cork annulus fitted, bingo!

Later I met ‘the friend’ (David), who told me where he gets them from;-

T & P supplies. eBay. You can order whatever size to want. The washer I fitted is 5mm thick, 50mm outside diameter and a 4mm hole.

IMPORTANT! Don’t forget to punch a couple of holes in the washer, otherwise you will create a vacuum in the tank. The least of your problems will be the engine will stall through fuel starvation.

Worse could be a damaged fuel pump.

I punched 4 holes in the one I fitted and all is well. Just to prove the point I filled right up to the neck then took the car for a spin to include several hard right handers. Not a drop escaped. The reflection in the tank demonstrates it is full almost to the brim.

This solution is a lot simpler than fitting pipes.”

Ed’s note: Lionel kindly sent me five (5) neoprene washers. I’ve kept one for myself, so four (4) are available. If you would like one, send me an e-mail to jj(at) [please substitute @ for (at)]. There’s no charge (if sent within UK).

XPAG Front Seal (Graphited Rope Seal)

Further to Eric Worpe’s article in Issue 67 (August 2021) he’s reconfirmed that the size needed is 8mm squared or 64 square mm.

Some calculations as follows:

“The actual space for the packing is 55.5 square mm so that results in a reasonable compression of the gland packing when in situ.

The maths works out at:-

Width of gland housing = 9.25mm

Diameter of gland housing = 48mm

Diameter of pulley contact surface = 36mm.

This results in gland packing height of (48 – 36)/2 =6mm.

Gland packing height X width = 6mm X 9.25mm = 55.5 square mm.

The typical maximum velocity is around 30 metres per second for graphited packing.

Engine revs at 6,000 rpm = 100 revs per second.

Diameter of running surface is 36mm, so circumference is 3.147 X 36mm = 113.3mm.

113.3 mm = 0.1133 metres.

Thus, velocity of running surface is 0.1133 X 100 =11.33 metres per second at 6,000 rpm.

Well inside the 30 metres/second specification.

Several suppliers are listed on eBay, a 2-metre length of 8mm packing costs around £12-50 See which gives a reasonable specification.

As the total length of the packing is about 130mm, some 15 lengths could be obtained from 2 metres.

This works out at about £0.85 each packing, so a nominal £1 per total length.”

Since Eric’s supplier reference I have obtained a 2- metre length of the graphited rope seal and can supply this for £2 inclusive of postage within the UK. Fourteen lengths are available (one length is already spoken for). Please contact me at the same e-mail address as given for the petrol cap neoprene washers.

The 2-metre length of graphited rope seal.

XPAG Front Seal (modern lip type rotational shaft seal)

There were some typo errors in Paul Busby’s article (Issue 67 – August 2021).

Paul has notified the following corrections:

The eccentricity tolerance on shaft diameter (out of round) is 40 microns not 4; similarly the surface speed should read 20 M/sec, not 2 M/sec a typo error with ‘0;s .. The shaft diameter tolerance (undersize) is -170 microns about 0.007″ for a 36mm dia shaft.

Since the article, there have been a couple of enquiries about doing the machining to accommodate the seal. As you will appreciate from the following comments by Paul Busby in answer to one of the enquirers, it is not a cost-effective job for the home mechanic:

As for tool and pilot for cutting timing cover/sump for lip oil seal, this would be rather expensive and not justifiable for the average T type man one-off job, as specially made and ground tooling. I am willing to provide the service to cut the timing cover/ sump and provide the special scroll seal I use (while you wait) but would need the block complete with crank/sump/timing cover all assembled and torqued up. Cost for service including seal £60. Could even do the job on site if local or if owner is prepared to cover travel expenses   Hope that helps? If overseas we have a problem, as the cutting tool and pilot is bespoke specially made and cost is in the order of £300. Seals are £20, plenty of these as had to buy a min quantity to get them.  

Thin steel gaskets for tappet chest cover

Mention was made of these in the February, April, August and October issues of TTT 2.

An initial order for 20 steel gaskets and 40 nitrile bonded cork gaskets was originally placed. This was followed up by another 10 and 20, which all sold. Following Paul Ireland’s article Keeping Oil in an XPAG in Issue 63 which was recently reprinted in the Octagon Bulletin, there was yet more demand and another 10 and 20 were ordered and quickly sold. As there still seems to be demand, another 10 and 20 have been ordered and should be available when this issue appears.

Just to re-cap, the cost of one thin steel gasket and two nitrile bonded cork gaskets is £12.50 plus £3.20 postage.

To order, please contact me at the same e-mail address as given for the petrol cap neoprene washers. This is likely to be the last batch.


Stanley Daamen sent me some interesting details about a Triple-M event held in Hurwenen, The Netherlands, from 13-15 August this year.

To make the ‘Matchbox’ pictures a structure was erected like you see in the picture below:

The car was then driven in and parked.

Then, with the wonders of technology, attendees were given a ‘Matchbox’ picture of their car, as per a couple of examples below:

Stanley first contacted me last December when he sent me this very nice Christmas card with Christmas Greetings from him and his wife, Ellen.

His TC is TC3392, which left Abingdon on 25th August 1947. The car was found in a poor state of repair in 1974 in Germany, close to the Dutch border. Stanley completed a total restoration by 1979, including making his own ash frame.

Here’s what the car looked like, as found:

Here’s a picture taken during one of the first test drives in 1980. Stanley recalls “It was a happy moment that the horse posed so beautifully for my TC, 1 HP against 54 HP.”

The red TA parked in the ‘Matchbox structure’ belongs to Stanley’s friend, Maurice Estourgie. It is TA0264, an early car. Maurice bought TA0264 in 2014 in the UK. It was previously registered JK 6000 when it was here.

Staying in The Netherlands, this is TC8204 belonging to Bart and Marjoleen Sanders. The car has travelled around a bit, having been in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Ohio, USA and then with its present custodians.

Bart tells me that “Our summer holiday 2021 took us from the French Alps around Albertville, to the Italian, Swiss Alps around Domodossola and back. On own wheels, around 3400 km round trip.”

TB/TC Gearbox Synchromesh

This article by Eric Worpe appeared in Issue 67 (August 2021). Hugh Pite found the article interesting and asked Eric if the synchro’s would still work if an actual Acme thread was cut instead of a series of circular grooves (which he envisaged would be somewhat easier when using a taper attachment set at 7 deg). He also asked if a high strength retainer Loctite was used on assembly and sought confirmation that the procedure was started using thick-walled tubing.

In reply, Eric thought that a series of grooves would work, but one would still need the axial furrows to drain the oil away. He confirmed that a high strength retainer Loctite was used on assembly as well as a 2 thou interference fit.

On the thick-walled tubing question, Eric said that  bronze tubing is continuously cast in a wide range of sizes and wall thicknesses, so it’s possible to minimise wastage. His only concern was whether he should have used phosphor bronze or the ubiquitous SAE 660 bronze which is free cutting due to its lead content. Grinding the cutter tool was the trickiest part, even using a tool cutter/grinder.

TC battery cover clip position

According to Paul Busby, with the change in ribbing depth (flutes) on a TC bulkhead also came a change in battery cover clip position by 1/4″.

Early deep rib cars have the clip closer to the edge than later shallow rib cars. Paul only found this out by sending Bob Lyell one of his battery covers from a late TC.  It clearly did not fit his early  deep rib TC. Worth noting when anybody is searching for parts.

An alternative fixing method for Type 160 mirror

Brian Burrow says that a fellow owner likes his attachment of modern (ex-Moss?) mirrors, drilled and threaded into the solid brass windscreen bearers.

16” Wheels for the TB/TC  – optional equipment.

Eric Worpe drew my attention to the availability of 16” wheels for the TB/TC from Abingdon. They were listed under Nuffield Exports M.G. Technical Literature L8 (June 1949) which was a supercharging leaflet. Mike Card mentioned this to Eric.

There must have been an equivalent Home Market publication.

Talking of supercharging, this is TC4472, one of a small number of TC race cars built in South Australia in the late 1940s. This one was built for David Harvey by Tony Ohlmeyer.

Tony was the MG guru in Adelaide who introduced John Gillett, (who sent me the picture) to MGs when John was still at school. Tony’s formula was short chassis, very light aluminium body with rounded tail (à la K3!) finned vented brakes, track rod axle restraints and air pressure fuel supply.

Engine is 1340cc with a belt driven J100 Marshall supercharger. Top speed with current axle ratio is 110mph, 1/4 mile 14.6sec. Weighs about 530kg. 

John says it is great to drive; it’s agile and predictable ……but, aerodynamics are against it.

He has owned and raced TC4472 for many years. It has been entered again for the Sandown Historic races in Melbourne 5-7 November, one of the regular Aussie historic race meetings. The car ran at the Australian Grand Prix events in 1950 at Nuriootpa (2nd, David Harvey) and Albert Park in 1953 (Jack O’Dea) and was subsequently owned in 1954 by Jack Brabham early in his career. In Australia it runs in the Class L(b) for historic race cars.

2 thoughts on “Bits & Pieces

  1. Stephen Tayler says:

    I was pleasantly surprised to see the photo of my TC 9903 on the rotisserie.
    This is the 3rd car that I have used it on, and after you have used one it will become a permanent part of your restoration tool kit. Virtually every part of the car is available to you at hand height in a standing position.
    Unfortunately the TC chassis is more delicate than the MGB and MGTF that I previously used it for so after the firewall , wiring loom , brake lines, and springs are on I will drop it down onto stands, so as not to stress out the mounting points.

  2. Neil Nicholson says:

    I am very interested in the seats in Stanley Daamen’s TC3392
    can he tell me what vehicle they came from as I would like to fit them into my TC0358

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