hursst

1960 MGA Restoration

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On 9/7/2018 at 6:05 PM, JV Puleo said:

 

Good for you! When I was in business, I would regularly give a customer a price. If it took ten times as long as I'd estimated, that was my problem. It's not the customer's job to pay for someone else's education unless it is clearly stated and agreed beforehand that the job is unique. An MGA transmission hardly falls into that category - or shouldn't if the mechanic holds himself out to be a transmission "expert".

 

The flip side of that coin is that there were jobs I could do in very little time. I stated a price and, if that was agreeable, did the job. That it took me an hour rather than six hours was my business.

I believe what you're describing was best stated as, "Some days you eat the bear, some days the bear eats you,..!!"'

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This weekend, I continued to make slow but steady progress on the MGA.  I got the transmission back, and was generally pleased with the results (for as much as I can see without trying it in the car).  I was charged a fair price.  The builder did find that the remote shifter linkage box and the entire clutch pivot mechanisms were completely worn out (Photos 1 and 3).  I found a used remote shifter linkage box (left in photo 1) to replace my original on the right.  You can see how the exit hole on the right is ovaled.  For the clutch pivot, the bolt wore through the brass bushing, then stared to wear thru the lever itself (Photo 3).  It also ate almost half of the pivot bolt away as well.  My car must have had 2 million miles or the previous owner lubed it with sand.  That's a lot of wear.  I bought some new parts from Moss and found a good used pivot on ebay.

 

Here's the mostly completed trans (Photo 2) with rechromed original shifter lever.

 

I also did 5 days at Hershey and was successful in getting some chrome parts dropped off, bought some new "1600" emblems for the MGA, and found most of the original tools for the tool kit (all the smaller tools were missing).  Bought some sanding long boards and sand paper, as I'll be finishing the doors , hood and trunk soon (at least with any filler or glazing putty, as it may be too cold to primer soon).  Also found a wire-wheel shop near Allentown, PA that should be able to inspect and repair my replacement wire wheels, if needed.  Want to get piece of mind before I repaint them and put them back in service.

 

Now I'm working on cleaning, priming, and painting the oil pan bolts, priming and painting the transmission tunnel, and getting the clutch slave cylinder onto the transmission.  Want to get all these small little jobs out of the way so I can concentrate on the doors, hood, and trunk

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Ref the wire wheels, you can get an idea of their condition viz-a-viz spoke tightness by tapping every spoke with a pencil. They should all ring with the same note if they are tight. If there is a dull thud, it is loose and needs to be tightened, which means the whole wheel is suspect. In my experience.

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I once lived in a street where somebody owned an E-type with spoked wheels. As it drove past you could hear the loose spokes moving....

jp 26 Rover 9

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My MGA had the same wear on the clutch fork pivot.  Spent a hot summer day in 1975 pulling the transmission out, replacing the bushing and putting it all back together.  The manager of the apartment house was not amused.  What fun.  

 

 

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Yes, the pivot bushing is a common wear point on MGA's. It is a small for the job bushing with no provision for lubrication.  A car that spends most of its life in the city suffers the worst. Same for the pins that connect the clutch and brake pedals to the master cylinder push rods.

 

 

Greg

Edited by 1912Staver (see edit history)
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As I told Luv2wrench....I have been closely following your restoration and the MGTD restoration. I owned three MGAs and a 1950 MGTD and I really never had the chance to restore them. Thanks for showing your work.

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More slow but steady progress made.  The weather has been holding out fairly well, so able to get more accomplished in the little time I find.  I got my parts for the clutch release pivot, so that's all shored up and placed in the transmission.

 

I got the last missing carb parts I needed at Hershey and put them on, so now the carbs are finally finished (Photo 1).  They will need proper fastener torquing and professional adjustment, but they should work well.  Saved a lot of $ doing everything myself and they turned out very well, for being a first-timer with carbs.  

 

I moved over to the repro floorboards.  I put some holes in them based on the rotted original ones I had as patterns.  I was somehow able to reuse the original seat fasteners and even salvaged, restored, and re-used 13 of the original seat fastener tacks/nails out of the original 24 that were on the car (Photos 2-3).  Still committed to as much originality as possible.  

 

Another update very soon, made more progress, but out of photo space for today.

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Edited by hursst (see edit history)
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Ok, they let me put in 3 more photos, so another update.  Started work on the steel portion of the NOS door.  It had quite a few under-the-primer rust areas that I had to dig out to bare metal and to remove most of the rust.  I ended up using some rust inhibitor spray to condition the metal before I primer/filler any of it to make it smooth again.  58-odd years of storage and moving around did a little damage to the door, but it's still incredibly solid (Photo 1).

 

I'm still working on the pretzelled front license plate bracket (photo 2).  I applied a bunch of bondo to it and sanded it down, but it's still quite sloppy and will need some more hammer and dolly work to get rid of the valley through much of the middle.  IT will never be perfect, but I think I can fool everyone into thinking it is a nice piece with enough effort.  I'll salvage this original piece yet.

 

I had more success with the transmission tunnel.  Hours of scraping off about 1/2" think layer of sand and oil with scrapers and screwdrivers paid off.  I was able to reuse every part here, from the screws in the shifter plate to the original trans filler plug and even the original U-shaped pad-like gizmo that goes on the front of the shifter plate in the middle of the whole thing (Photo 3).  I do have one small section of the mounting area at front left that will need to be cut out and a patch welded in, but it's only about 2" square.  Wanted to get it painted up for protection first and because it will be too cold soon, then repaint the small repair section after the fact.

 

Transmission is finished and ready for the engine to come back from the rebuilder.  I should be able to focus on the doors for the next month or two until the engine is ready.

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