MG TF - Track / (not so) Fast Project

1 month 2 weeks ago - 1 month 1 week ago #181405 by georgefreeman918
So here it is, my 2003 Sunspot Yellow MG TF.

I acquired the car at the back end of 2015, and since then it has been permanently off the road and garaged. I purchased the car from my brother who was going to sell it to webuyanycar.com, and I couldn't let it go.

Previous to my brother owning the car, it was owned by my father , so ultimately it was only right that it stayed in the family.

2003 MG TF
Sunspot Yellow
32k miles
1.8 Petrol
135bhp
Trophy 16" wheels
TT Stainless Exhaust

thumbsnap.com/s/WjwqY3Cw


The car wasn't great cosmetically, but mechanically it had had all the relevant work done, including the compulsory head gasket.

Somehow, both door handle mechanisms were snapped, so this was the first port of call. Unfortunately I couldn't find any in sunspot yellow so I purchased some blue ones and painted them - not a bad match for a first attempt.
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The interior was also looking quite tired, and I didn't like all the grey plastic. Upon seeing an image of the later revised Le500 interior, I sprayed all interior panels gloss black to smarten it up - I just need to get a new steering wheel badge.

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Plans are to track it, something I have never properly done. I have found MGOT (MG's on track) which are designated track days for MG's which seems to be a good starting point.

Plans are to currently improve:

- Suspension
- Brakes
- Increase stiffness
- Reduce weight

At the end of the day, its not going to be setting any lap times, but I am sure with a few focused modifications, can prove to be a fun, enjoyable track / weekend car.

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1 month 2 weeks ago #181407 by georgefreeman918
This week saw me take delivery of my new suspension units.

I have opted for Spax shock absorbers with Eibach Springs, reducing ride height by round 20mm.

I knew it was going to be straight forward. 14 years of road grime and salt had worked it way onto all surfaces and crucially bolt heads. Most came off with a lot of swearing, but others required further attention. Finally all bolts were off and the old suspension units on the rears were removed.

DSC00675 by George Freeman , on Flickr

At some point in its history, the rear callipers had been painted red and some of the suspension arms had been painted in Hammerite. I wanted to give the car a layer of under body seal so opted to do it at this stage, whilst the shock absorbers were removed.

DSC00676 by George Freeman , on Flickr

Whilst waiting for the paint to dry (didn't take long with the help of Storm Brian) I dismantled the old suspension units and built up the new shock absorbers and springs. They are adjustable dampers, (through a number of clicks) so will be looking online for optimum settings - I have read 12 clicks front, 15 back, but obviously depends on preference and conditions of use.

Shiny new units.

DSC00679 by George Freeman , on Flickr

Fitted. If you notice in this picture, I had actually fitted them the incorrect way round (damper adjuster not facing outwards) so had to remove and refit correctly. Doh!

DSC00677 by George Freeman , on Flickr

That was all for today, I will start on the fronts next weekend.

On an additional note, I have purchased some 4 pot AP brakes and 280mm discs that were fitted to the 160 Trophy for the front - I will probably just upgrade the discs and pads at the rear, after painting them properly. I've also purchase a full set of Goodridge braided hoses.
The following user(s) said Thank You: mowog73, cairnsys

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1 month 2 weeks ago #181419 by talkingcars
Good work so far.
Looking forward to the fronts.


Home to black MGZS180, yellow MGZS180, blue MGZR160, green MGF VVC and red MG Maestro T16.

MG - the friendly marque.

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1 month 2 weeks ago #181420 by BruceTF135
It's looking good so far. I love hearing (and seeing) about how people improve their cars. Keep us posted...

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1 month 2 weeks ago #181513 by mowog73
Looks good George!

Mark
95 MGF

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1 month 1 week ago #181635 by georgefreeman918
No progress this weekend unfortunately.

On a separate note, I need a new battery - can anyone recommend a suitable one.

Also, this led me to think what other engine components should I replace / renew to help in getting it running, bearing in mind it has been stood for 2 years? Is there anything particular I should look out for?

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1 month 1 week ago #181640 by BruceTF135

georgefreeman918 wrote: On a separate note, I need a new battery - can anyone recommend a suitable one.


I bought one a couple of days ago from Tayna - www.tayna.co.uk - Fantastic service, I ordered it Tuesday afternoon and it arrived before 9am Wednesday morning. I bought a Bosch S4004, £71.24 including delivery. 4 yr warranty. How good the battery will be, only time will tell but the price was keen and the service 2nd to none. The same company charge more via ebay so beware of that. Similar price from Eurocarparts at the moment with their halloween80 event.

Oh, mine was type 075 for my 2004 TF, which is probably what you'll need too. But check!...

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1 month 1 week ago #181641 by jelly
Got a yuasa on the mg came with car seems good, bought three tanya batteries wont be buying another!

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1 month 6 days ago #181759 by georgefreeman918
Not much of an update, but keen to keep on with progress. Currently stored at my dads, so only getting the chance to work on it at the weekends.

Finally managed to build up and fit the left rear Spax shock absorber and Eibach spring that I didn't manage to quite complete previously. Need to purchase some new lower shock absorber bolts as I understand they are susceptible to shearing.

[url]
|https://thumbsnap.com/WDxOMFUI[/url]

New rear anti roll bar drop link nuts and bolts fitted - I did debate upgrading to rose jointed anti roll bar drop links, however this can come at a later date.

I also used the spare time to clean off behind where the rear bumper fits and polish the stainless TT exhaust. The boot liner was removed and thankfully no rust was found!

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|https://thumbsnap.com/vfzysc2n[/url]

Finally, some goodies arrived. AP front callipers and 304mm discs for the front along with Goodridge braided hoses. I am currently looking for a disc and pad setup for the rear to balance out the improved front brakes.

DSC00686 by George Freeman , on Flickr

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1 month 6 days ago - 1 month 6 days ago #181760 by cairnsys

georgefreeman918 wrote:
Finally, some goodies arrived. AP front callipers and 304mm discs for the front along with Goodridge braided hoses. I am currently looking for a disc and pad setup for the rear to balance out the improved front brakes.


One option might be to fit the 280mm rear brake upgrade from MGF Mania (there are other suppliers of bug brake upgrades). This avoids having to worry about spot calipers for the handbrake. Should be a nice combo with the 304mm APs on the front.

Great post BTW. :yesnod: :yesnod: :yesnod:

Robin ;)

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