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MG Repair is a community effort -- with a little help from my friendsHere the car is up on Jacks.  No Special Tools needed, The Shade Tree Mechanics DreamOne of those little Mechanics Chairs is a wonderful addition to a shop, it saves knees and backsMost of the parts came off the Left side very easy, I wish it were true for the right. 
 
Barry and I nearly died taking off the right side.  Here you see the Roll Bar and Tie Rod End are still frozen even after 6 Hours of trying to loosen themAll the parts we can take off are removed.  Notice the wonderful repair we made to the steering arm boots when the car was obtained, just before we put it away for winter storage.  Duct tape is such a useful tool.Here is a close-up of the problem pieces.  After six hours of fighting to get these off, we finally found the easy way to remove them.  Use a propane torch and liquid wrench.  Even then it took some effort.  Eventually heat and persistence winsFinally all parts are off and the reconstruction can begin.  This is the starting point. 
 
This is the right side lower A-Arm bolt and sleeve.  The sleeve is corrosion welded to the bolt.  Some judicious application of a dermal tool and cut off allowed me to remove this part as evidenced by the missing flats on the head. Thanks to Mark Brandow's advice, we are replacing most of the bolts, it's only about $50 to do that, and the time and labor saving is worth the few dollars on a project of this scale.  So far it has taken us about 3 full days over 3 week-ends to get to this point.  I expect that One of the PDO's undercoated the car with a thick soft tarry substance.  This attracted great quantities of sand, and generally made the bottom of the car a gooey terrible place to work.  The steering assemblies had 3/4 inch of this goop all over them.  Mineral spirits cuts and cleans these parts.  I think I spent more time with a brush in my hand than I did with a wrench in my hand. Even though I had many of the bolts and washers we still cleaned them up in case we needed the partsHere is the steering assembly cleaned up, inspected and ready to go back on the car.   
 
This is a shot of me cleaning parts under the watchful eye of the chief steward.  Pat Farrell and old friend, and an active SCCA Chief Steward drops by "The Works"  to lend a hand and swap lies as we have for almost 30 years. The old parts off, we finally begin to renew the suspension.  We will be adding tube shocks so first the lever shocks are refilled, and the valves removedThe shock has been renewed, and the brake line refitted for an extension.  Here you see the shock tower mounts in place and new boots on the steering armsYou can see the new steering arm boots, Tie Rod Ends, mounting bracket for the tube shocks, and brake line attachment brackets are installed, before to putting in the lower A-Arm 
 
Pat and I start to put the lower A-Arm/Spring Pan into position.  As an ex-Army Aircraft Mechanic,
 "O'l Sarge" would be glad to see the open manual close by for ready reference.
When we put everything together we encountered a small problem.  Notice how the Shock Tube, will contact the bracket holding the Hydraulic Bulkhead Connector.  This won't work too well, I think.This bracket's position was probably determined on how "Alf & Nigel" at the Abingdon Plant felt that day, or perhaps how much Half & Half they consumed at the pub with their shepard's pie at lunch.  After careful measurement, we determined that we only had to cut a small portion of the bracket away to allow sufficient shock tube clearance.  So first we started with the end cut using a close in hacksaw.  
 
Here you see the depth of cut made with the hacksaw, now an angle cut needs to be made from the base of the bracket to the longitudinal cut.  We could have continued with the hacksaw, but this metal bracket is substantial, so we chose to switch to a dremel tool & cutoff diskHere is the completed modification, you can see the end nut of the hydraulic line from the master cylinder in the upper left cornerIf left as such the square cuts would probably develop stress cracks due to the vibration. Here we use a grinding ball on the dremel tool to round off all square intersections into a fillet to prevent stress cracksA final adjustment with the MG "Fine Adjusting Tool", and the modification of the bracket is complete/ 
 
The lower bracket was set too far in to allow sufficient clearanceA pair of washers behind the bracket brought it out to allow the shocks to freely clear.  However, washers that would fit in the channel did not have a large enough hole to clear the mounting boltsHere you can see the lower bracket moved out enough to allow the lower shock mount to clear.  Notice the flat flange of the bolt extends about an eighth of an inch past the lower A-Arm ChannelThe shock tube now clears the Lower A-Arm sufficiently 
 
Once the tie wraps holding the shock tubes are cut, getting them compressed enough to slip over the bolts is a pain.  Here a purpose built tool was devised to make the job easier. This last modification to the brackets gave me plenty of practice in getting the shocks compressed.In the next few shots you can see the bracket clears the shock tubeHere the suspension is at full drop. 
 
Here the suspension is under full compressionThe only thing left that rather bothers me is that the brake line kinda hangs up on parts here.  Also, the banjo nuts that attach the hydraulic line to the front brake calipers was too big.  A little grinding of the banjo outer shell with a dremel tool, and it fit nicely.This cured the leaks in the system.  We then filled the system with DOT5, and we were done  
     
     
     
     
  

Last modified: April 26, 2005

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