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1977 GT Restoration project

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Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
Other small repair here....

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Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
Another job off the ‘to do list’, so both sides have the ant-tramp and rear spring hanger assemblies finished now. So much easier being able to copy from one side onto the other.

Once the underside is painted and the axle is in place, we can cut the actual tramp bars to length.

I can count on just one hand what’s left to do on the shell now, so we’re finally getting there with panel work.


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Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
Picked this used, but tidy roll bar up yesterday. Harvey will be making plates to weld into the car with captivated nuts for it to bolt onto while I’m doing other little jobs. It’ll then get stripped back to bare steel and refinished some time later during assembly of the car.

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Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
Hope my updates on here are ok. I started this thread without seeing the journel option and as not many people post any comments, I’m not sure whether I’m in-line with a regular process or not following etiquette.

We have strayed from a standard re-furbishment or rebuild of an MGB, but I’ll carry on unless anyone suggests otherwise.

It’s getting cold in the workshop, but we’re still getting stuff done

Sciroccosprinter Avatar
Sciroccosprinter Brian Telfer
Kilmarnock, East Ayrshire, UK   GBR
1977 MG MGB GT "The Old Girl"
This is like a master class in restoration! Talk about thorough! The roll bar you have, did that come out of a roadster ? I've got a 78 BGT and have been looking for a cage or bar for 4 years. roadster bars are easy to find but I reckon the GT bar would be taller than the roadster but have not been able to confirm . Brian

Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
Hi Brian, it came out of a GT and after seeing roadster roll bars, I’m sure they aren’t as tall. That said, I can’t be 100% sure about what the difference in height would be.

Used ones don’t come up for sale very often, so I was glad to drop onto this one. Mechspec know Harvey is funding the car himself and got in touch about this and at a very reasonable price.

Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
while I’m still on panelwork Harvey is a bit worked up - I need to move faster, so he made a start on getting the donor Rover engine ready for removal. He can get the MGB engine plate machined to suit at school, so this gets the ball rolling on that side of things.

A bit of mechanical work is a refreshing change and will be good to spur us on when we start mocking the Rover engine up in the Parts car engine bay. Its a peculiar looking thing in the workshop, but will enable us to make engine brackets and sort mechanical things out while the main shell is being prepared. The previous repairs carried out on this are really, really bad.

Cold dark nights aren’t particularly nice in the workshop at the moment - it’s not insulated or heated, so I’m reading up on relays and electrical things that need to be wired for getting this up and running.


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Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
Had a good day in the workshop today. The last bit of panel work on the shell is just the drivers rear quarter area. I’ll be making another Sebring outer and inner arch, but leading up to that is the rear corner section and also the lower repair panel needed after a sill fitment.

Still a bit to do, but setting a target for each task to get done is a good way of tackling this. I look at what we’ve completed so far and can’t imagine how many hours have gone into it.

Anyway, the Midget rear lower quarter repair section had an extra 1,1/4” deep strip of steel welded onto the top and got a little tickle with the hammers to make it fit up nicely. Having one side done already, makes these jobs much easier - all the head scratching has been done and we know where to make the cuts and joints.

The new inner and outer rear valance had another little closing panel made, so this got welded in place as before and the new lower corner panel could then get tacked into position. These fit really nice if the MGB quarter is trimmed across the line which would run through or across from the lower edge of the lamp panels on the chrome bumper cars.

As were going to be fitting the extended arches, I haven’t welded down along the joint to the MGB arch but these Midget panels lend themselves for a standard rear quarter panel too. Running a zip cutting disc through the new panel which was sat on top of the MGB lower quarter gives the joint needed for butt welding them together. You just need to discard the offcuts from the old and new and there’s a perfect joint.

Welding is just as before using a sequence of tacks, so not to distort the panel. Grinding down carefully, followed by a file and then polish with a 115mm Flexi disc gets it ready for paint prep. - really can’t wait for that.

Once this was done, I spun the car over and made another curved section to join the rear valance and lower corner section. Tracing the outline from the side already done made this quick and easy to do. It just needed running through the planishing hammer to profile it correctly before being tacked into place.

Before fully welding this, the tacks got ground down and a few minutes work with a hammer & dolly got the joints nice and even.


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Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
Next job is the repair section needed after fitting a sill, which should be done tomorrow. The car had previously been repaired in this area - looked to be accident related as there are a couple of dings under the bodyfiller, so I removed this using the Flexi disc followed by 80 grit on the DA.

There was also one of those awful immobiliser lock things that had been fitted to the rear quarter, just in line with the door handle so Harvey cut a small blank for that and it got welded in. Using a magnet on the back of this type of repair gives something to hold the repair or blank in position, keeping it flush.

If you leave a hacksaw width gap around the joint, this gives the best result for a nice level repair. If you don’t leave this small gap, the weld has nowhere to shrink into, so the panel buckles up slightly - not a great amount, but just enough to be a pain when your blocking down later. Just tacking this on the top, bottom, left and right first of all, allowing time to briefly cool I then just continued tacking until the joint was fully welded.

A gentle grind down, then a Flexi disc and a whizz over with the 80 grit, still in the DA and you could just primer this.

I also blanked off the trim fixing holes on the rear quarter too. I hold a section of copper behind, as the weld won’t stick to it and it saves a ‘blob’ of weld needing fettling on the inside.


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Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
So here are the two panels needed for the lower rear quarter panel after replacing an outer sill. One is a lower repair section for the rear wing and the other being a lower B pillar panel - what doesn’t get included is the bit needed for joining these together, so I’ll show how we got around this. I’ve looked for ‘how-to guides’ on this and was surprised how little information there is, considering this is a popular repair. Here is a simple, but good way of doing this.......

First of all, the return edge on the lower rear wing panel needs hammering back on itself, otherwise it won’t fit flush against the sill. Before doing this, sand down the black cathodic type primer and spray on some zinc weld through primer. I remove all of the black primer back to bare metal as it can flake off with panel work, so once this bit is done, you know it’s got a good corrosion coating in place. For now, just spray the zinc local to the edge needing hammering over.

Tapping this edge over progressively completes the fold and if held against a dolly, or over a solid surface during hammering, the outer surface won’t waver or distort. Once the return edge has contacted the main panel, there’s no need to assert any more force with the panel hammer.


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Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
To get that little B pillar bottom section sitting as it should requires a bit more steel adding to the the edge that meets the sill. We did this on the other side, so I’m sure this must be a common thing. The angle of this lower edge, once clamped in place - good luck doing this by the way, doesn’t run parallel with the recess on the sill - see first picture. It also doesn’t drop down to the lower quarter panel as it should either. This repair section is talller than it needs to be, so when you trim that area down, this can be added to the other end. It just needs scribing or marking and can then be tacked, followed by being fully welded in place after it’s dressed up well enough. As ever, always better to leave too much material when doing this and then trim it down as necessary.

As these bits aren’t good enough to clamp into place and just weld in, Harvey used some card and scribed around the seal aperture on the other side and then taped it onto where we are working. Neither side would be absolutely identical, but it gives you an idea how far out the panel is without some adjustment.


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Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
Now both of these bits have had an initial bit of attention, there’s nothing provided to link them together. The original rear (lower) quarter panel has an additional profile that spot welds it onto the B pillar. On the other side, I scribed and joined the repair panel onto the sound & original section around the door aperture area. This side could have been done the same, but Harvey didn’t notice I’d done it like that and just cut the old panel away.

Looking online, I couldn’t find any means for doing this which surprised me so here’s my effort which works rather well.....

Scribe and trim the return edge of the lower repair panel from the B pillar, so whatever lip is then attached, sits snug to the inside of this - the pictures should make more sense. Then hold a section of sheet against the repair panel and use a sharpie to mark around the profile. Allow 5mm to the bottom of this, which will get folded at 90 degrees and then 15mm the other side for the flange to be spot welded on the B pillar.

A really neat way to make a lip or fold is to use a 10mm diameter coach bolt - cut off the threads and then run a slot through the centre to a depth equal to the fold required. If you run along the edge, progressively levering up on this little tool, you end up with a neat fold. Don’t worry about the inner edge of this lip just yet, it can get trimmed later on.

Zinc prime this, plus also the lower repair panel and behold....it fits like it should and can be welded to the inside / underside.

A quick fettle over the weld with just a Flexi disc and more zinc coating and this gives exactly what you need to get onto the B pillar. Any weld penetration on the outside polished up and is not visible, plus there no distortion whatsoever around what will be the lower aperture around the door.


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Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
Here’s more pictures associated with my last post......


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Mark Burton Avatar
Nottingham, Midlands, UK   GBR
I wouldn’t ordinarily go to so much detail on something like this, but as I found such a lack of information on this repair I thought I’d document it.

With the lower quarter panel zinc primed, clamped onto the sill and lined to the edge or recess, you can’t really go wrong in lining up. Quite literally, if the panel is clamped and lined up to the top edge and recess on the sill - there’s little chance of it being wrong. The other reference point of course, is the panel needs to line up with the door aperture edge on the existing panel. I tacked this in place and dropped the door on just to be sure and there you go.

You’ll notice that we’d scribed and trimmed that lip to suit what is needed for spot welding the B pillar section now too. It’s usually better to add extra material and trim back once it’s been dressed and planished.

Removing the door meant we could then hammer / dolly the joint to the existing quarter panel after it was tacked, before committing to fully weld it up. Plug welds onto the bottom edge got the usual gentle grinder and Flexi disc treatment and now I just need to close this off with the little B pillar section.


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rocannon Avatar
rocannon Platinum Member Frank .
Clairvius Narcisse Township, Bokor, St. Kitts and Nevis   KNA
1967 MG MGB GT "GT From Hell"
1980 MG MGB "Restored By Photoshop Inc."
eye popping smiley eye popping smiley eye popping smiley eye popping smiley eye popping smiley
I am in awe.



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