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MG Midget and Sprite Technical - 2 Minute Job?

I tried to remove the filler plug from the axle, but it was split and just broke up.

I have tried WD 40, easy out, heat, hammer and chisel to try to get some radial movement and I think just about any combination of the above, but it still refuses to move...

Anyone got any ideas how I can get it out.

Tony Brough

If you can, chisel off the remnants that protrude past the casing

[wrap each drill bit with tapeabout 1/2 inch from the tip to prevent it going too far and possibly damaging the diff]

Pilot drill through the centre of the plug (3mm should do)

Keep increasing the drill size until you are cutting right out to the edge.

Just dont start drilling the original threads

You will find whatever remains of the plug by that point can be picked out with a small flat screwdriver.

You may wish to remove th diff to ensure you get all the swarf out once done - or even better would be to remove it before hand and save risking any damage.

Thanks for the reply Peter.

The diff is already off so no problem there. I will try drilling it out more until the remaining bit of the plug is thin enough to remove.
Tony Brough

If you have a welder, weld a bit of slightly smaller square bar to the remainer of the plug and wind it out.

Disconnect the alternator first before welding.

Assume your petrol tank has no leaks !.

It looks like you stil have a bit of square left so another option is file up a bit of square bar until it is a good interference fit - tap it in and try again - must be a really good fit.

richard boobier

buy a cheap 1/2" extension bar

grind all the crappy chrome off it and make it small enough to put in the plug

chuck it in the hole and throw a heavy weld around it

the heat from the weld alone should help shift it, but it will also allow you to fit a good grolly bar and start swinging it around the garage.

Im still going for the drilling route though

but when you get out to 3/8" or 10-11mm fire an old extention through the hole thing and weld it on from the inside of the casing providing the plug is flush or even protruding through the other side

You could try this as suggested by Richard
Robert (Bob) Midget Turbo

Once you've got that out if you're replacing it with a plug that has a 10 mm hex hole don't buy from MGOC as the two I bought were not quite 10 mm and I had to file down my drain key to fit

I bought them 3 years ago but I bet they're still on the same batch

You're welcome to my old square plug if you want

Better than WD-40 for penetrating is Plus-Gas or if you can get them Rapideze or Kano Kroil
Nigel Atkins


Most likely they weren't 10mm but 3/8" AF hex socket.
David Billington

David I'm not so sure, but as usual I could be wrong, I know it would make sense to be 3/82 but I'll almost certain (allowing for memory) that they also sell 10 mm drain key/sockets and when I spoke to someone they told me they ordered 10 mm (unless I'm going more mad than usual)

I'll see if anyone has (I haven't) a 3/8" hex and try

Ford g/box is 10 mm hex would that plug fit rear axle?
Nigel Atkins


Maybe you can buy them with 10mm hex sockets but I looked up taper plugs in the Unbrako information and they gave 1/2" BSP ones as having 3/8" AF sockets. 10mm is 0.393" and 3/8" is 0.375" so close but you're not likely to get a 10mm key in a 3/8" socket. Now as metric pipe threads are metricated BSP I wonder what is available in Europe as a taper plug and whether they have 10mm sockets in place of 3/8".
David Billington

Id be tempted to do what ( Robert (Bob) midget Turbo, England ) suggested BUT use an air or electric impact driver...

I got a 1/2" electric driver and it really make fast work of stuck, frozen, or over torqued hardware... Ive only had one job the electric impact driver didnt work... and that took 2 large meaty men both on a 6 ft cheater bar on a 3/4" driver to break it free

impact drivers are cheap... like $60 on avg at H.F. plus lots of uses

But I really think bobs method wih an electri impact wrench is the wat to go.... maybe even get a bolt with left handed threads so the torque is with the threads.

Tony, did you use the proper tool? You probaly did. If not this is the perfect tool for it.

Arie de Best


That is Cool, Is that yours? where DID you find that little gem?


Unfortunately I didnt have such a wonderful tool available.

I have tried a bigger "Easy Out" but still no movement.

I am going to go down the route mentioned by Richard and Bob. As I dont have a mig welder myself it will mean a taking it to my friendly local welder.

Thanks for all the suggestions.
Tony Brough

Drain plug wrench pt no 07179 still available from Draper tools priced at 6.74 inc VAT cheap as chips norman
N Speak

David's gonna love this - I used one of those multi drain plug tools (Draper), specially bought for the purpose of removing square holed original plug and as that prong was tappered I had to cut it down to get a snug fit, I assume the plug socket got a little splayed over the years

As with a lot of multitools (the one I have at least) just about does the job but isn't as good as a single specific tool, although Arie's looks a lot better made than mine

David it makes sense now that I've got 3/8" plugs but I'm (almost) sure I was told they were 10 mm otherwise I wouldn't have tried the 10 mm tool (which I may have already had or bought just for the job, can't remember now)

At the time I was committed as the car was on stands axle empty and one of the two original plugs with cracked sides so I filed down the 10 mm tool to fit new plug and moaned about it next time I was in the MGOC shop

As I said Tony's welcome to my square plug (and multitool if he was nearer) - they only go in two treads so should come out reasonably easy - once you get 'em started that is
Nigel Atkins

Draper tools drain plug wrench Pt No 07179 priced at 6.74 inc. as chips
N Speak

Tony and N, you posted whilst I was still typing see my comments about my Draper tool

Next time Tony try my technique, soak plug in Plus Gas (or better still Rapideze if you can still get it or Kano Kroil if you can get it) then go off for a liesurely cup of tea, if it still wont move after you also tried tightening then soak a bit more and leave it to the next day - that usually works
Nigel Atkins

typical of me - whilst putting that Draper multitool back in the shed I found a couple of 1/2", threaded, (gas) plugs and caps

David, the plugs have square heads on them, the original square socket drain plug threads into the 1/2" cap so I assume the 1/2" square head plug will fit the rear axle (?) - article, that I've seen before, says 3/8" -

the square head fits an open ended (not ring) 1/2" spanner

if these do fit the axle they would be good for the fill/level hole but not so good on the drain hole as they would stick out even further below the axle casing meaning even more chance of jaking on the plug rather than axle

have I made something simple complicated
Nigel Atkins


If you're stuck, I'd be happy to help.
Dave O'Neill 2


That would be great if could weld a bolt on it for me, as I can't get it over to the chap I usually use for my welding until next weekend.

My email address id tonybrough at who2click dot com

Tony Brough

Good news Tony, well done Dave

David of course you are right it is 3/8" AF hex socket

I'm sure at the time I was told it was a 10 mm but , who knows

I think I turning out to be the English Prop
Nigel Atkins

My plan for would domination is working

ha ha hahaha .... HAhaHA...... HAHAHAhahahaha........ HAHAHAHaa........ HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA............. ####HAHAHAHAHAHA#####


Just to let you all know that Dave came up trumps, welded a bolt on the plug and with a bit of help from a "grolly bar" as Peter would describe it eventually unscrewed.

Many thanks Dave
Tony Brough

Glad to help. I enjoy a challenge.
Dave O'Neill 2

My 3/8 drain plug key arrived today

Franklin Tools 3/8 Inch Male Drain Plug Hex Key (301TB)

not the cheapest solution but it is the correct tool for the job so worth getting and difficult to find a one-off alternative

bar comes out so you can also use a 19 mm spanner or socket set to release stubbon plugs and then use the bar so as not to over tighten the plug next time

eBay -

Nigel Atkins

This thread was discussed between 12/03/2011 and 17/03/2011

MG Midget and Sprite Technical index

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