My MG's Garage
After getting the TD Home for the first time my Wife and I gave it a good bath, a liberal application of Leather Cleaner to renew the Leather, Silicon Spray to renew the rubber parts, and Engine Degreaser. The ballast resistor feed wire was wrapped with a chromed plastic spiral wire loom, which I wanted to replace with a black plastic split loom. On removing the chrome loom, I was shocked to see the wire has burned all the insulation off. Following the wire back into the main wiring harness, which was split open (I keep a pair of medical bandage scissors in my tool box for cutting electrical tape looms) and the damage assessed, repairs made and the wires insulation cleaned with isopropyl alcohol. The entire assembly was re-taped (I should have used non-adhesive tape but at 11 PM on a Saturday Evening I just reached for my trusty roll of black electrical tape) and placed in a split plastic loom. At this time I decided to re-engineer the electrical. I relocated the ballast resistor to a location that would allow full contact of its heat sink to the chassis for better cooling, reworked the turn signal to remove the screws and the rubber grommet providing short circuit protection, added an auxiliary fuse block to keep anything I may add from being a mobile short circuit, and finished the driving/fog light circuits with relays (see my comments on auxiliary lighting). I then replaced the rotor, cap, points and condenser, cleaned the plugs, and took it to a local gathering of British Cars. I noticed that the ammeter was showing a constant 15 Amp charge. Evidently whatever took out the ballast resistor input lead insulation probably hit the voltage regulator, and probably the coil. After ordering replacement parts for these items, and a new fan belt, the car is now in a reasonable shape electrically considering its using Lucas Parts! See the shots below for the after effects.
The Dash is a wonderful piece of 3/8" solid walnut with a beautiful grain figuring. You can see the thickness from the under dash view picture above. When I got the car, the walnut was a pale almost tan, but after three coats of boiled linseed oil, it came back to some of the nicest wood I have seen. This winter, I plan to pull the dash apart, and I will put a high gloss polyurethane finish on it to protect and make it shine. I removed the mix mash of switches that were under to control the driving/fog lights which didn't work anyway. Above you see the replacement SPDT Center Off switches I installed. I tucked them up under the dash on the left so they wouldn't be noticeable, yet convenient to operate. These switches actuate relays that switch the lights. See my article on auxiliary lighting to discuss the actual hook-up and my reasons why I do it that way. I also adjusted the steering wheel which was pushed all the way forward. Next mirrors, and a new Tonneau Cover, and new rubber pedal pads. A few other bits and pieces, and it is starting to look like a new car.
Stay tuned for this saga as we begin the modification to get Brooke to become Brooke the Mighty (in deference to M'GILLICUDDY the Mighty)
Last modified: April 26, 2005
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