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MG Midget and Sprite Technical - Carb Conundrum

Recently the front carb on my 1500 has been flooding on a regular basis. I took out the float, which looks fine, but the needle appears to have a bit of a shoulder worn onto it.

I was going to replace the needle and seat with a s/h spare that I have, but I couldn,t get the brass hexagonal seat body to budge. There's not a lot of clearance to fit a socket over the hexagon and difficult to say what size would be required for a perfect fit. Is there a special tool for this?

I ended up fitting a new needle to the existing seat and will give it a try tomorrow but not being a matching pair I'm not holding my breath.


Dave, you've lost me a bit on this, if you can't get the seat out give it a spray with carb cleaner and a tap, if that don't work then give it some releasing fluid (that's not WD40) and a tap

but having had my problems with my previous car's carbs needles and seats and problems on my current midget I'd say don't worry too much about matching pairs - I bought a set of new needles and seats for my current car and found on one carb that still didn't help so swapped with one needle and seat on that one carb with s/h that a mate gave me and they worked fine, so I had a s/h set on one carb and brand new set on the other and it worked out fine
N Atkins

The right size socket will fit the body of the valve easily enough. It is a whitworth one, sorry I can't remember the size off hand - I just know which one it is in the toolbox! On one occasion when I was not at base I also found a metric one fitted - and I can't remebr that one either!
Paul Walbran

I remember using a metric socket and it fitted quite well. Was an 8mm or a 10mm I think.

M Le Chevalier

I thought it was a 9mm, to complete the confusion.
Alex G Matla

maybe it was a 9mm then, split the difference! I do remember it was part of a bicycle multi-tool as I couldn't be ar*ed going down to the garage at the time to try and find a socket that would fit, I thought I would try the metric ones in this bike kit on the off chance they would fit and hey presto!

M Le Chevalier

There is a special slim SU box spanner with a hole in the end for a tommy bar. I've got one but can't remember where I got it from. Sorry I can't be more helpful, but at least you know that they exist.

b higginson

There's a thought Bernie.

I thought box tubular spanners went out with the Ark, but I've got a stash somewhere that haven't seen the light of day for many years. At least you can make them slimmer by filing the external flats, unlike a socket.

I ran the engine up today and there was no leak from the float chamber, so hopefully it's now sorted.


This thread was discussed between 21/06/2011 and 22/06/2011

MG Midget and Sprite Technical index

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