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MG Midget and Sprite Technical - Boot lid removal for easy refit

I need to get at the boot lock so lid off. Unbolt lid from car or hinges for easy refix is the question?
Thanks in advance, Dave
Dave Squire

leave the hinges attached to the car. Mark round them on the bootlid with permanent finepoint marker before removal.
David Smith

Thanks David.
Im glad I stopped and asked. Makes perfect sense.
I need my bed.
Cheers, Dave
Dave Squire

I use tippex because it can be picked off afterwards with care.

I presume this would work for boot lid hinges in the same way as it does for the bonnet hinges:

Check the lid is adjusted to fit correctly to start with. Before slackening any mounting bolts drill a small hole through the hinge and into the mounting plate that it bolts to. Something like 2.5mm drill works well. When you come to refit the lid use a small roll pin or drill shank in the hole to align the hinge back to the exact position it was in before. Or use a small self tapper in the hole before final tigtening of the fixing bolts.

At the risk of appearing an idiot because I'm missing something obvious, but why remove the boot lid to get at the lock?
Seems like more work and more risk of damaging something.
G Hawkins

Hi G, problem is the lock - not the catch - has tiny nuts with little room to manouver. The two large nuts you can see do not remove the lock, you have to get inside the inner skin and see the small nuts for the handle with the lock in. Im just too old to be a contortionist these days so taking the boot lid off my rat rod is the best option.

Thanks again Guy, thats the technique I needed to remember but couldn,t. I need to retire soon methinks. Work is just downright distracting from constructive diy stuff.
Dave Squire

Ha! Dave! Removing those little nuts that hold the lock is no problem. Refitting them, and getting the thread to start is a whole different matter! Even so, I am not sure how much the process will be helped by removing the boot lid, plus there is the added risk of scratching any paint you may have on there.

Thats exactly it. I have easily loosened the nuts but cos I use the car as and when I need it daily I need a good chance of putting them back in reasonable time. Ive got a workmate with a wood rather than laminate top set up so I can make any jigs to hold the awkward stuff like the lid in the same way my old man used hits woodwork benches years ago. (Spare the bench and ruin the lid :-) ho ho ) So I stand a good chance of doing reasonable time on lock nuts refitif if I can get the lid back on OK.
Don,t worry about the paint, there are several coats of different color celly from pre 2000 that have been applied rather liberally that keep the surface rust free if rather ratty.Certainly no shine. I just defend against scratches.
Thanks again for the screw in the hinge reminder.
Dave Squire

I understand about the fiddly nuts, but I've never had major issues with them.
With the boot lid open it's at quite a good height & nice and stable.
In my experience removing and refitting a boot lid is trickier.
Still 'one mans meat' and all that ;-)

G Hawkins

Things like this all depend on how tall/short you are your general build, age, flexibility, your garage/workshop facilities (or lack of, a garage and a lift would be very nice).

I got backache last time I messed about with boot handle with the lid on the car (another person had put it on upside down) and I've yet to fit the new gasket I didn't know I needed at that time).

It seems I'm the wrong height, size, build, age, fitness, flexibility for most jobs on the midget.

Having only a hardstanding to work on often it's too wet, cold (for some jobs), too windy (not me, the weather) or too warm and/or sunny for some jobs and me.

I've come in for a rest from working on my car and the sun - obviously I should be out driving the car instead but I must be paying for being very bad in a, or all past lives.
Nigel Atkins

Or, Nigel, maybe the problem is just too many excuses!
Anyway, l thought you were at the Fat Lamb this weekend?

Not excuses as the jobs get done (eventually), sometimes better than if done by a professional (and sometimes/often not). I rarely follow my own advice so make things more awkward for myself than need be.

Today, I cut and stripped the wires and then remembered I'd run out of 1mm bullets - but I did use PlusGas before removing fixings and during removal so no problems with the rust binding them.

My hands are definitely too small for the ratchet crimpers (and the one-hand grease gun).

The Gambol (five) V for Victory Tour (VE Day on the 8th) is next weekend, wonder if anyone will turn up in a German car.
Nigel Atkins

Not done this yet so wondering how others manage to arange their bodies to get to the lock nuts without taking the lid off and suffering major discomfort doing it.
Dave Squire

You don't need to contort youself to see what you are doing. Shut your eyes (it helps to focus) and undo the nuts by feel

As Guy said I just stand behind the open boot and reach under with spanner then fingers.
Never tried closing my eyes though...
G Hawkins

I did a rapid boot lid change in the wind tunnel (time is money!) ok. I've also changed the lock and handle with the boot lid on the car.

No-one has mentioned that with a fiddly job and difficult access how easy a job might or might not be can depend on what tools you have. In A/F I have a regular set of spanners and a short set and also a few half moon.

Easiest for that is a small ratchet combination. Sometimes the stud unscrews rather than the nut but it's just the same.

And how do you unbold the bootlid on a mk1 sprite, same procedure?

Ill get my coat...
A de Best

Indeed gents, tool problem it is then. Small ratchets and stubbys being sourced.
Dave Squire

the cheaper stubbies can have wide heads on them (well the ones I got have). I did have a lovely set of smaller spanners many years ago, they were just quite a bit shorter rather than stubby and had narrower and slimmer heads than the stubbies I have now.

Slim headed ratchet ring or combination imperial spanners are lovely to used, wished I'd bought two sets for myself.

It dooesn't matter how many tools you have you always need something different you haven't got.
Nigel Atkins

This thread was discussed between 02/05/2018 and 08/05/2018

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