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MG Midget and Sprite Technical - 1979 1500 midget .. starting problem

hey guys

really want some help!

i got the girl running with a fresh battery right this is how it happend.

first i fitted a fresh battery
then i pulled out the choke and after about 4 turns of the key no problem started lovely

then silly me hit the choke and it popped back in causing the engine to cut out

so i again pulled the choke back out and re started the engine and it fired up for about 30 second then died on me

since i havnt been able to get her started?

any idea's at all?

anything at all

new to the whole MG scene and forums can not wait to get her on the road just need this problem resolved


AJ Farrell

Hi Anthony,

welcome, sounds like you might just have had too much choke (might be many other things though)

a fresh battery in good condition is a great idea but do check for 'water' level in each cell and that the lugs,connections and leads are fully clean, secure and protected

it may be that you took the fusebox cover off but if not get a replacement

the best thing you can do as anew owner is to buy yourself a reprint of the original factory owners 'Driver's Handbook' as they will give you loads of info on how to own and drive the car plus servicing schedule and details, (Ref: 0058) -

I believe prevetion is better than breakdown and roadside repairs for this I suggest doing a rolling 36,000-mile service plus replace a few other parts (as required) ASAP whilst regularly driving the car (that the main thing regularly driving it)

I have a 'new owners advive notes sheet' that many hear consider OTT but if you want it just email me

nigel atkins (one word) at bt internet (one word) dot com

I've never owned a 1500 so even less certain with those than I am usually

loads of great useful videoes here, principles apply regardless of model -

BTW if you want to put your vechicle profile up and add your first name to save having to type those in various post just click on(my) View vehicle profile and on that page look under the photo and it tells you with links
N Atkins

site's on a go slow it missed my edit

I meant

sounds like you might just have had too much choke by not reducing the amount the choke cable was pulled out

the Driver's Handbook will help you with this

(course it may not have been this)

if it's not been run for a while or is a car that sits a lot and/or for a long time then a good steady 50 mile dual-carraige or motorway run may give it the blow out it needs then a 50 miles twisty road return journey to wake up steering, suspension, tyres, brakes, clutch, gears, transmission, cooling system, ect - the car's electrics and heating
N Atkins

Check that your choke cable isn't stuck on - it happens sometimes.

Also, just because it's an old car and there is a choke, doesn't mean that you have to use it! In fact, on my 1500, I rarely have to use it - and, even when I do, then you are often better getting it to turn over without it - and then opening it as it does - in fact, my BGT is the same - it's only the 1275 that needs the choke as I'm turning over ...

Check that everything else is running smoothly - accerlator cable etc to the carbs.

One question though - is it turning over or totally dead?


Right guys thanks for the response

I Replaced the choke cable today as my old one was jamming but i new of that so i had to shut the choke with the hood up.

it was turning over but just wouldnt fire up


A friend of mine who works in a garage came round about a hour ago as he wasnt free any other time so we got the lights out and set to work first of all we had a little tool to check there where a spark from each plug ... NO PROBLEM

so we moved onto the fuel

Fuel Pipes heading to the carbs where dry ?

so we moved to the fuel tank ... it was half full.. so i had fuel!

so my next idea ... fuel pump? took the fuel pipe coming from the tank to the pump of and it was dry ? so we took the pump out and made sure it was clear after a few pumps it was sucking perfect... so then he reached down an noticed that one pipe was a little lose.

we then moved to under the car to find out the rubber pipe going from the pipe under the car to the fuel pump had a bit of ware on it, then found out that the fuel pipe has some how been ripped of and become disconnected! therefor no fuel going to the engine!

so somewhere along the way between the yard and the car being delivered the pipe must of got snagged on something and been pulled with enough force to pull the fuel pipe off

Thanks ever so much for the help guys

and i no, im an idiot :P should of been on the first things to check :)

Thanks again

AJ Farrell

thanks for the update Anthony

good thing about these cars is that if the engine wont start or suddenly stop it's usually only ever fuel or electrics

means you can go for that blow out run - excellent hood down weather over the next few days or so

positively warm(ish) last Sunday
N Atkins

This thread was discussed on 09/11/2011

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