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MG Midget and Sprite Technical - Air Cleaner Decals

I was wondering if the ďCooperĒ decals on the air cleaner were applied to all engines or if they were a special edition or after-market item? There were no air cleaner decals on my car when I got it.

How were they positioned from the factory? Was the text right side up when viewed from the left side of the car, as shown in Terry Horlerís book on page 81? Or was the text right side up when viewed from the front/right, as shown in the Horler book on page 100?

Paul Noeth

just saying, not meaning to upset you-

why not put them as you think they look best, you've got the engine bay the way you want it and it looks good so why worry now too much about absolute originality

I've no burning interest in originality or concours/show cars but I would notice a few things that stray from the strict line on your engine bay now but which air pan decals and what way up I wouldn't notice

just saying, not meaning to upset you
Nigel Atkins

" I would notice a few things that stray from the strict line on your engine bay"
care to share them Nigel?
David Smith

Hi Nigel, no offense taken. I make no pretense about this being a historically correct restoration. Quite the contrary, I see this as a resto/mod. The idea was to put it back on the road as a driver and make it as reliable as possible. The car was extensively damaged by rust and neglect, so much so that it could never be a good example of a unmolested midget.

But with that said, if I can put something on correctly or incorrectly, I would rather do it the right way. Horler shows it both ways, albeit, on different models. So I wondered if the decals were ever on the original 1098 in the first place, if they went on in a particular way, or if it was at the whim of whoever was on the line at a particular moment?

Just for fun, what do you see that jumps out as not being original?

Paul Noeth

I'd have thought the label instructions would face out to the nearest wing but have no idea - David possibly does but he's too busy taking the p*ss out of me at the moment (which is fair enough as he's got a lot of winding up to catch up on) :D

I'd only spot the very, very obvious but as David has asked I'm sorry but I don't care to :) - again David would be able to list them for you if you were really interested

I'm really glad to hear you'll be using the car, as I've always used my classics for everyday use I try to get them very reliable and that now includes avoiding many modern made original parts

I've changed some parts and components for the sake of reliability and cutting down on servicing requirements a bit and also to make the car more usable at any time (I did notice you'd made one too, or possibly two)
Nigel Atkins

Paul, very nice job on the engine bay, a job to be proud of.

Just had a look at some photos of my now sold all original car and the decals are positioned to be read looking from over the left wing - same view as your photo. That was on a 1963 car but a 1098 and same style filters.

Lets see some shots of the rest of the car!
John Payne

i don't think there are any, it looks to be standard US spec to my eye.
David Smith

yeah, x2 on the kudos, that is one beautiful looking engine bay, period correct hose clamps and all!

Only thing I see that would loose you points at Pebble Beach is the alternator conversion, but that's a totally acceptable change in almost everyone's book.

Norm Kerr

c'mon now David, just imagine that's my engine bay (as if!) and not Paul's that should get you well started

for modding, as well as alternator I thought there might be something else but getting a better look now I see I was wrong
Nigel Atkins

I'll play, Paul,

In addition to the alternator, Isn't the copper heater pipe non-original. Great looking engine bay. I also would like to see pics of the rest of the car.

Do you have a vented oil filter cap? We are trying to solve a mix and match crankcase venting issue on another thread.

C R Huff

Very nice engine bay,
apart from the alternator the most visible difference for me is the heat shield. This should have a straight top with no cut out at top left for the gulp valve. The before image shows the correct style, the after image has the later type of heatshield. Irrespective, it's a good looking engine compartment
PN Sellen

well done Paul it seems it's just me that thinks there's more paint and copper (top heater pipe included) than original

and I wonder about the ignition system(?)

the cap should be vented/filtered

I think the heat shield is the other way round, cut out is correct
Nigel Atkins

nothing wrong with the copper pipe (see Horler pp. 81 & 100), the heat shield looks correct too (p 81). What is interesting is that in the 2 pics quoted, the decals on the air filter casings face opposite ways. So maybe it was random, or maybe it changed when the casings changed from the radiused edge to the bevelled edge type.
David Smith

not that it matters and I could well be wrong but I didn't think the copper pipes were original (perhaps the heater pipe was as that's what I was given incorrectly for my later car) or some of the painted pieces and I thought it was accepted that there are, like all books and databases, errors in Terry Horler's book

I'm far too young to know the cars when factory fresh and don't know anyone, directly or indirectly who worked there at the time so suspect that many 'original' cars had small variations when they left the factory as there are thousands of items and lots of different people that made the cars up

and by the looks of things the steering wheel is on the wrong side (or I suppose given the sales volumes it aint)
Nigel Atkins

so how many copper pipes other than the heater pipe are there Nigel?
David Smith

errr, getting my nose to the screen perhaps it is me perhaps they are not copper, L pipe under rear pan handle, vacuum?pipe around engine and I see now the other pipe is a pink? wire

my initial comment to Paul was really to do with the alternator (and I thought those two wires to the coil looked odd)

I expect I'm wrong about my thoughts on the paint on the rocker cover retainers and carb heatsheild too

will I ever get my Show judging badge, SpecSaver keep turning me away too

label on the washer bottle ??? anything?

(first time I've ever noticed the carb to carb pipe clips are at different heights too)

(I even look at the wrong photo on page 100 and thought the carb decals were different anyway)

I live in a property that has uplight shades and shades that are so heavy when I turn the light on the room gets darker and this I'm told is fine, the kitchen is the only room with a proper light and I'm not allowed in there at certain times

I moaned about all this once but when I got up off the floor I realised I was wrong!
Nigel Atkins

pertronix'd have thought the label instructions would face out to the nearest wing but have no idea ->> Nigel, that is my thought as well. It would read the same as the number tag on the chassis rail below.

Does anyone know if the decal was put on all engines, or only on special edition cars?

<<well done Paul it seems it's just me that thinks there's more paint and copper (top heater pipe included) than original>> When I got the car the top heater pipe looked to be a standard piece of copper water pipe with a 90 degree bend that was somewhat collapsed. It looked homemade. The ends were a bit ragged and it looked like the piece was cut with a hacksaw. I ordered a replacement and it was similar in size and shape except that the ends had a nice little flared bump to keep the hoses secure and appeared to be mandrel bent allowing full flow. I assumed this to be an after-market replacement. Maybe the original was steel and the replacements are copper to prevent rust through.

The vacuum line on the engine was steel, corroded and in rather poor shape. I could not find a steel line of the same size but I did find the right size in copper. Sharp eye on that one.

Also the hydraulic lines, which were originally steel, are now copper/nickel.

Paul Noeth

>>Does anyone know if the decal was put on all engines, or only on special edition cars?<< - someone will know (obviously not me)

thanks for all that Paul, I'm not going as mad as I thought I was

until recently over here we were supplied with that top heater pipe for earlier cars like yours for the later cars, it's bent the wrong way for later cars but by the time I found this out I'd broken the bracket off my original black painted pipe, so it went on with two P-clips and a lot of tension in all the fittings - it was in copper but I didn't know if they were originally

batteries don't normally leak now, easy to forget how things have changed

the L shaped pipe I thought was a (perhaps copper) hydraulic pipe I just used the question mark in the wrong place

I wish I'd got the better suited Datsun 5 speed in mine instead of the Ford T9

according to TH's book (and as much as I could determine) your car should have a vented/filtered oil cap (page 80), see my photo with cap against purple microcloth in the long 'Engine breather...' thread here, I'd suggest you swap to the vented plastic cap (not the less efficient chrome)

also on page 81 the photo shows the same heatsheild as yours in the after photo with the cut out (for breather pipe I'd guess) so I'd have thought you have got the correct heatsheild fitted (I can't tell from that photo and don't know that the heatsheild or rocker cover fixings were painted)

I thought others might pick up on my hints about the electronic ignition, I spotted those delicate wires, do make sure that they don't scuff with movement inside the dissy, I think when this happens some owners blame the unit for being faulty instead of looking at the initial installation which they probably done

Nigel Atkins

<<<<Do you have a vented oil filter cap?>> No it is not vented, at least to the best of my recollection. Iíll look at it again but Iím away from home right now so I canít check to be sure until next week. However, this is the same filler cap that was on the engine when I got it. I think it is original.>>

Nigel, I was wrong, it is vented. But there is no steel wool filter inside of the cap like shown in your photo. As best as I can tell it is just empty.

Paul Noeth

Hi Paul,
the filter isn't really steel wool, well not in the modern ones I've had anyway, they're a small sheet of metal mesh folded in half lengthwise and rolled to fit inside cap, the mesh is a bright finish and lubricated with something

everything is away now but if you need a photo I can do it tomorrow

the new filtered caps only cost £4 here from MGOC Spares but as far as I know others sell the exact same thing for £11.40 (I know because I got caught once assuming they'd all be about the same price)

I think you could treat yourself to a new one at whatever $s is to £4

I think you do need the filter to restrict airflow (I think that's important, see other looooong thread) and I suppose to stop small grit or metal shards that your engine bay's not covered in :)

also the cap has a seal (above the bayonet) which on yours is very squashed (perhaps at one time it was forced on to one of those alloy rocker covers and wasn't a good fit) and your cap is a bit battle scarred

this also brings up the PCV, if it's new then it might not be as steady in operation as the original ones (in good condition) and to check it's been put together correctly and the test of it working have a look in your Driver's Handbook - if you've not got a copy email me and I'll scan the relevant page for you, I'm sure you want the car to go as well as it looks
Nigel Atkins

to save you looking in the other very loooong thread here the photo of the cap I have

if you want a photo of the mesh filter I can take one for you

Nigel Atkins

This thread was discussed between 29/10/2013 and 06/11/2013

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