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MG Midget and Sprite Technical - Cutting back front wheel arches

Greetings all. This is somewhat of a reintroduction as I haven't posted on this board in a decade or more, this being the amount of time my midget has been in storage.

Anyway, it has been unearthed now and started, but clutch and brakes were siezed so engine/box is now out and various other bits dismantled for inspection and while doing this I am contemplating cutting back the inner wheelarches as I've already got a forward hinge/remove GRP front end and I've always liked the look of race cars which have had this done.

Any thoughts/advice? Is it still allowed MOT wise?


Yes I did this once and largely for the same reason. Looks great when it's all clean but in reality the wheels fling up a large amount of undesirable sh*te often wet, which soon covers the engine and electrics. So it stops looking pretty and may promote electrical gremlins earlier than expected. I ended up putting them back on.

I didn't cut them off my race car for the very reasons Fergus mentioned, as well as the stones that would be flung up damaging the bonnet.
Dave O'Neill 2

agree with Dave and Fergus, I've kept them on my race car too. However in the quest for weight reduction I've often seen the upper flat sections removed and replaced in ally sheet, maybe one day that job will get to the top of my To Do list.

In the end the car made up my mind for me - the outer seams of the inner wheelarches were quite corroded so having trimmed off these and then the unsupported corner I ended up like this.

Hopefully a good compromise.

Other progress:
- Clutch unsiezed, engine repainted and back in.
- New brakes fitted, ready to bleed
- Wheelarches cleaned and repainted with some magic stuff from Eastwood.


Why not fabricate inner wheel arches out of fibreglass but bonded to the flip front?

MG Moneypit

As you say -- good compromise--
I cut mine right off on my racer-just because I cut everything else off that created weight-didn't get all that messy as it got regularly cleaned but there certainly was an ever increasing mountain range of little dents along the tops of the front guards from stones flying up off the tyres
William Revit

Rob - I did consider that but you'd need to get them to match up nicely with the remaining steel, and more importantly I wasn't in the mood for fibreglass work.

Other good news is I've found a man to respray it for me (I was never happy with my attempts) so need to get it back together and MOT'd so I can take it over to him.

I see you have a Marina engine. Anything interesting inside?

MG Moneypit

It's an A+ block rebuilt with internals from the MG Metro sometime early 90's. A friend was doing rallies in a mini so the bits came via the Rover motorsport scheme.

Unfortunately my nice ported head cracked between the valves so I had to go back to a standard one. I still have it though, on the chance that some new valve seats would recover it.


I was trying to work out what was attached to your brake calliper, but I now think it may be a hole in your tarpaulin ;o)
Dave O'Neill 2

I think you will find it is a Marina block which is inline with the oil filter at the top and rear of the block. The A+ in-line block looks similar but is a ribbed block.

In the decade that you have been gone there is now a book that has this stuff in but which previously didn't.

Are you the same guy that left your midget in the girl friends garage went to buy a pack of smokes, then came back 10years later and the car was still sitting where you left it, so you just opened the door and took it.

Was that you?? God what a great story that was
1 Paper

Daniel - you are correct, it is a Marina block, that car also donated the radiator.

1 Paper - not I, but sounds like a good story.

This thread was discussed between 14/03/2017 and 17/06/2017

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