Sunday, April 30, 2017

Kate's MG, Part 9

At the end of Part 8, I was impatiently waiting for carburetor parts from Virginia-based Moss Motors. In actuality it only took a week, and most of that was not Moss' fault. I ordered the parts on a Saturday, and they shipped Monday morning, via USPS. Not UPS, but the post office. According to the post office tracking site, the parts sat in the Richmond, VA postal facility for about four days! But finally they were delivered yesterday, and today after church I got right to work. This little pile of stuff is what $100 worth of MG carburetor parts looks like:

Monday, April 24, 2017

Kate's MG, Part 8

In Part 7, I ran out of time after building a nifty carburetor stand for the SU carbs on Kate's MG. The next day I went back to the shop to try to figure out why the front carb was running a steady stream of gasoline out of the overflow vent - the open brass pipe in the picture below. I suspected it had to do with some binding in the float, and sure enough, with a bit more cleaning and adjusting, I was able to get the float to hang normally:

Friday, April 21, 2017

Kate's MG, Part 7

In Part 6, we learned that the front carburetor had an incontinence problem - it wanted to run gas out the front! That's almost always a problem with the float or needle valve, so I pulled the carbs one more time:

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Kate's MG, Part 6

Today's post is a mixed bag, but heavily biased to the positive! Let's call it 10 steps forward, and only two back.

As promised in Part 5, today's work was to get a real mechanic involved to assess the basic safety of this MG. I just didn't feel qualified to give it a clean bill of structural health, even though my investigations made me very hopeful. John Zimmerman and I had lunch, and then he agreed to follow me to Lancaster Mitsubishi, my local garage of choice. That seemed like overkill, but during the 2-mile trip, the MG started running very poorly and smelled very strongly of raw gas. I was glad to have the insurance of a rescue wagon behind me!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Kate's MG, Part 5

In Part 4, it was obvious that we were close to having a driveable MG.  Without further ado...

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Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Kate's MG, Part 4

At the end of Part 3, I said the next task was the brakes. It was, but I didn't go nearly as deep as I thought I might. I was able to free up the stuck pad without removing the caliper, and called it good for now. I have been obsessing about the elephant in the room - the rusted sills on the MG. There were pictures from the outside in Part 1, but without further inspection, I can't know if the car is even safe to drive. There is visible rust from the front wheel well to the rear wheel well on both sides, and in the area called the "dog leg" right in front of the rear tire, there's a good-sized hole on each side. Here's the driver's side:

Monday, April 10, 2017

Kate's MG, Part 3

Just a quick post, with more good news! I ended Part 2 with a list of work to do next, and the very first thing was to installed the roller wheels on my EZCarlift so I could rotate the MG 180 degrees. John Zimmerman was once again available and willing to help, so off we went. You have to remove the wheels and tires from the car, which required a BIG breaker bar - some garage monkey had really hammered the front wheels on. But eventually, the car was ready to rotate:

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Kate's MG, Part 2

Part 1 got the car to the Grant St. Garage and gave some initial impressions. Now, it's time to dive in. I'll start with the good news: it runs! Here's the video:

Friday, April 7, 2017

Kate's MG, Part 1

My good friend Kate has owned a 1974 MGB for many years. It was her fun driver in grad school in Washington, DC, and for some time thereafter. But, in a typical "ran when parked" story, it gradually became unused, and for the past 5+ years has sat in the corner of the barn like this: