[Mgs] '65B Restoration Status, How to Proceed

Barrie Robinson barrie at look.ca
Fri Feb 20 08:37:24 MST 2015

Hello Peter,

I may be being too chatty but I have done a few 
cars the latest being a 1957 Aston Martin.  The 
one before was a build of an MGB GT V8 which 
started as a "driver" but ended up as concours  - 
but still driven all over the place except in 
salt strewn winter. If you are going to do the 
car up as a fun driver then I have the following suggestions

1) Take hundreds of photos (thank heavens for 
digital cameras). File in separate 
directories/folders such as Engine, Brakes, Front 
Suspension, Dash, etc etc.  Photograph routes of 
wiring, brake and fuel lines as well as 
connections to things such as heater hoses, brake 
cylinders and electrical blocks.

2) Never throw anything away. Keep a special box for all the bits

3) Replace the wiring with a "point to point" 
wiring system.  They are many suppliers of such 
systems.  I used one from Dan Masters for the MGB 
and I am delighted.   Such a system makes trouble 
shooting a breeze - and provides high 
reliability. Unless you want to go 100% concours 
then chuck the original wiring system (but keep in "old parts" box

4) Do not have your chassis chemically cleaned 
unless you are satisfied that the company really 
really undertakes a proper rinsing.   Sand blasting is a safer bet.

5) Before you put anything on the cleaned chassis 
squirt stuff inside. The best is Dinitrol which 
is not available in NA as it is too expensive - 
it lasts 10 times longer than other stuff but NA 
customers go for cheap not for good.  I bought a 
case from an aircraft supplies company (it is used in the aircraft industry!).

6)  Buy a rotary tumbler.  I had a few and Harbor 
Freight had the best.  Buy sharp sand from a 
building supplies place and  ground walnut shells 
from a pet store - it is sold as kitty litter!

7) Collect all you nuts, bolts and funny little 
metal bits - Run them in the tumbler for a couple 
of days (longer the better) using the sharp 
sand.   Run any electrical parts and other such 
delicate parts such as fuse holders using the 
kitty litter.  Block any holes to stop ingress of cleaning media.

8) Take all nuts and bolts and small metal parts 
to a cadmium plater.......if you can find one 
!!  If you so desire cadmium will polish up with 
a brief touch of the electric grinder wire brush- 
Wear a mask  as cadmium is regarded as toxic.

9) When you have dismantled all the suspension 
etc take them to be powder coated.   This is not 
inexpensive but if you are going to use the car 
it will pay off.   ALL my parts on the MGB and 
Aston were done - even brackets, brake fluid 
container, master cylinder, rear axle, front 
suspension etc, and all inside stuff..

10) Buy a whole pile of those plastic containers 
with dividers, label and put parts in according 
to their use.  Nuts and bolts are easily 
sorted.  I found that the best were the least 
high,1-2" ,  were the most useful. I also got 
single higher ones for the fuel sender and 
reserve petrol off-take thing but that may be an 
overkill (but it has proved useful!!)

11)  Check out what suppliers are out there - I 
have found sources that will willingly sell 
direct to enthusiasts and one can get 50% 
discounts sometimes - Mind you having a club name 
helps - got a 50% discount on rubber parts buying 
as the AMF Club.   I found a good place for BSF 
nuts and bolts, engine mountings and there are good Lucas bits suppliers.

12) Last and not least - ask around as there are 
far more erudite blokes on the list that know far more than I do !!!

I had a chuckle at the comments about bondo - 
Both my "classic" Maseratis had bondo 
!  Apparently the factory was not too shy in 
using it !!   Also never understand the view 
taken on costs of restoring.   My next door 
neighbour looked at my MGB GT V8 and was aghast 
when I told him the resto cost - He said I would 
never get my costs back.   I pointed to his now 2 
year old superb European car and asked how much 
he would get for his car.  So his could 
depreciate like mad but mine was all wrong 
because it also lost "depreciation". Huh?

Oh!  One more thing !!  Manuals are sometimes 
wrong - rarely admittedly, but it does happen.

At 05:57 PM 2/19/2015 -0500, Pete Ryner via Mgs wrote:
>I wouldn’t be concerned with a bondo job from 
>a reputable shop, but if you need rockers and 
>other major parts replaced, not just repaired 
>I’d only take it to an experienced MG 
>shop.  You have a great looking survivor that is 
>worthy of a good restoration.  Wish mine was that clean.
>Of course it isn’t my money and a good shop 
>will cost thousands, typically more than what a 
>completed MG is worth.  You didn’t mention 
>where you live.  Is there a club in the area that may be able to help?
>Good luck with the project
>From: <mailto:mgs at autox.team.net>dave n via Mgs
>Sent: Thursday, February 19, 2015 11:04 AM
>To: <mailto:mgs at autox.team.net>MG List ; 
><mailto:mg-mgb at yahoogroups.com>MGB Group
>Subject: Re: [Mgs] '65B Restoration Status, How to Proceed
>do not take it to a shop that has not worked on 
>old british cars.  they don’t have a clue and 
>won’t do it right.  your car will be bondo’d 
>and a mess.  it is well worth taking to someone who has experience.
>From: <mailto:mgs at autox.team.net>Dan DiBiase via Mgs
>Sent: Thursday, February 19, 2015 8:52 AM
>To: <mailto:mgs at autox.team.net>MG List ; 
><mailto:mg-mgb at yahoogroups.com>MGB Group
>Subject: [Mgs] '65B Restoration Status, How to Proceed
>I apologize for the length of this note.....
>My '65 B has been stuck in limbo for a few years 
>now, as circumstances have made it difficult for 
>me to free up any time to work on this project. But I expect to have some
>time this coming year to re-start.... Here is the background -
>I purchased this car in 1999 with the intention 
>of restoring it to (mostly) stock condition, not 
>to be a concours car but an enjoyable driver. 
>'Mostly stock' meant, in my mind,
>that it wouldn't necessarily be as it came from 
>the factory - I want to put an O/D in it as well 
>as upgraded tires, etc. The condition of the car 
>was pretty darn good for a $600,
>non-running example. There is one rust hole in 
>the passenger's side rocker, so I assume that 
>there is additional inside and on the other, 
>although frankly they are in better
>shape than the ones on my '76 B! Also some rust 
>in the rear fender. But overall, the body is in 
>good shape. Mechanically, the parts are all there but the engine accessories
>were all removed when I bought the car and the 
>engine itself is seized. It is probably the 
>incorrect engine for the car, being a G-series 3 
>main bearing car - it should be a GB
>5 main bearing engine based on the build date. I 
>have a couple of GB blocks that are rebuildable. 
>I may also just take the '75B engine out of my '76B and use that, as I expect
>the '76B - being pretty rusty - to only have a 
>few years of life left in the body....
>Current status is 'mostly' stripped. Wiring 
>loom, engine/trans, steering column all remain 
>in the car. Everything else has been removed and stored away.
>I'm at the point where I need to make a decision 
>about proceeding. I am assuming that my next 
>step would be to remove the engine/trans and wiring, and I can proceed to have
>the body looked at...? I don't really have the 
>skills/tools to do the welding work necessary to 
>replace the rockers, nor am I really that 
>interested in learning... ;-) The nearest MG
>'specialists' are over an hour away but there 
>are several reputable body shops in my area (at 
>which I have had work done on my 'regular' 
>cars). I'm wondering about thoughts on
>using a regular shop. And also what sort of 
>things I can do in terms of prep to reduce the cost of this work.
>Other comments appreciated.
>Oh, and lots of pictures are here => 
>Dan D
>Mgs at autox.team.net
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Barrie Robinson                         Go with the flow - but paddle hard
MGB GT V8 in concours condition
Aston Martin DB 2/4 MkII under restoration
barrie at look.ca
Barrie, Ontario
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