Welcome to our resource for MG Car Information.



MG parts spares and accessories are available for MG T Series (TA, MG TB, MG TC, MG TD, MG TF), Magnette, MGA, Twin cam, MGB, MGBGT, MGC, MGC GT, MG Midget, Sprite and other MG models from British car spares company LBCarCo.

MG Midget and Sprite Technical - Anti rattle gear stick kit

I have a 59 frogeye with a smooth case gearbox. I have just bought an anti rattle kit (see picture).
It would appear that after removing the gear stick, I should put the larger spring down the aperture, followed by the plastic cup, and then replace the gear stick with a new o-ring in place, on top. Is that right? Its just that the plastic cup's radius is too large to fit down the aperture and so doesn't sit on the spring.

The kit comes with 5 components, but the only old part in sight when I removed the gearstick was the o-ring! Concerned they may all be sitting in the gearbox somewhere!

Graham V

It's more likely that the PO never fitted the kit at all. If the plastic cup is too big for the socket then it's wrong, so send it back. The bits are not going to fall into the gearbox as they are under the gear lever, and in any case they should stay in the extension if someone managed to lose then when trying to install. AFAIK the cup is the same for all boxes, but I might be wrong (always possible!).

L B Rose

The anti rattle plunger if dropped will find its way to the drain plug eventually providing it doesnt get mashed along the way
S G Macfarlane

If you look at the Moss diagram you should have parts 108-109 and 141-143.
The O ring fits between the gear lever and the plastic/nylon 'button'.
It's a good kit and stops that annoying sizzle.

Jeremy MkIII

The O-ring fits in a groove in the lower ball of the lever; or is that only on the later type?
David Smith

Depending on which gearbox you have the new (brass coloured) plunger might be different to the existing one so compare them before replacing one with the other.

That plastic cup should look like the ones below. -

Nigel Atkins

I agree with Les. Call them and ask. I'm sure I had the wrong size nylon button once, though I must confess the same part number seems to go for all gearboxes.
Nick and Cherry Scoop

Thanks for all your really helpful comments

In the end, I very carefully ground down the outer circumference of the nylon cup, until it fitted nicely. It took a while but that's ok.

Having then fitted the adjusted nylon cup, the spring & the o-ring, I then fitted the brass plunger (items 108 and 109) but found that it made the gear stick much too tight (I couldn't compare it to the existing plunger as there was none). So I added a thick washer to part 110, to draw back the plunger, and that has done the trick. Such an improvement!

I am still not clear if the missing parts (none of 108-109 & 141-142 were present) would have found their way into the gearbox or not. Its possible they were discarded by a previous owner as I have always had that rattle (but not now!). I guess a change of oil would be a sensible precaution.

Graham V

a gearbox oil change is always a good idea especially if it's filled with engine oil. On the MGB they recommend gearbox oil changes every 2 years or 24k-miles whichever is the sooner.

Do a thorough oil change by getting the oil as warm as possible first (easier still with warm weather) and leave to drain for as long as possible to get as much of the old oil, muck, crud (and bits?) out as possible.

Take the oil filler plug out first, if only to make sure it does come out before you drain the box then can't refill it and it will help with draining.

As you say doing the oil change means you can check the condition of the oil and look for any bits in the oil.

When it's engine oil in both engine and gearbox some use a different colour oil in the gearbox to that in the engine so that they can tell if it's the engine or gearbox leaking (or both).

You would learn more about your Sprite by meeting up with other Sprite owners and going out in other Sprite that are in good running condition (and not just bright and shiny Sunday afternoon cars which aren't always the best of runners).
Nigel Atkins

Coincidentally, I was searching for something in the garage today and came across a spare nylon cup.

I only had my metric callipers to hand, so diameter is 15.8 mm.

It would be interesting to know the dimensions of the new items.

Dave O'Neill 2

Hi Graham,
You're welcome to drive no e on Tuesday night at the Ace Cafe.
G Lazarus

Nigel, I'll be changing oil just as soon as I get some time

Dave, Sorry I didn't measure it but I did speak to supplier who said he'd never had a problem before. I guess it might be because I still have the smooth case box.

Gary. It was of course your idea to fit the anti rattle kit, and I am appreciative of that, as there was a big improvement. I hope to be there Tuesday.

Graham V

ISTR problems with a recent anti 'zizzle' kit also,
the 'o' ring was the wrong size - lever ball would not go back in and another bit - could well have been the plastic bit ended up in the bin also !

This was on a rib case.

More quality parts !

richard b

Graham, just out of interest, how did you get the spring and cup to stay in place when you replaced the gear lever and started to compress the spring?
Guess why I'm asking.........
Peter Blockley

'glue' the spring to the bottom of the cup with a large dob of grease then fit in place with long needle pliers - or surgical tongs or large tweezers if you have them!
David Smith

Strange. I guess my set up must be different to yours. I simply dropped the spring in, followed by the cup, then the gearstick and just tightened it up. No problem at all.
I'm assuming you have the cup the right way up of course.

Graham V

Thanks. Dob of grease sounds like a good idea. I don't think I had the cup the wrong way up, but its so long ago I don't remember. I didn't bother to replace it, content to live with the gear lever "sizzle" which is usually masked by all the keeping the engine revs up.
Peter Blockley

I just put a new anti rattle kit in my rebuilt ribcase box and found exactly the same:

Nylon cup too large

Brass plunger is too long, if you wind the securing bolt fully in it crushes the spring inside the brass plunger.

As I am fortunate enough to have a lathe, it turned down the nylon cup and took a few mm off the brass plunger (and put a large washer behind the securing bolt head so that it presses firmly on the gearstick ball but not so much that it makes it stiff to move.
R Cohen

Interesting to hear it wasn't just me then!
Graham V

This thread was discussed between 03/05/2018 and 08/05/2018

MG Midget and Sprite Technical index

This thread is from the archive. The Live MG Midget and Sprite Technical BBS is active now.