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MG MGB GT V8 Factory Originals Technical - Bonnet louvers: (i) type, and (ii) rain issues

I was wondering if anyone has found a particularly period-authentic type of bonnet louvers, and if so, whether anyone has solved the rain issue. I'm 100% convinced that they would greatly help the heat issue ... I've driven the car with the bonnet detached altogether and in such case the temp needle never, ever goes to the right of "N". But the rain issue is one which requires some thought -- after all, unless you're in love with rust you can't just have water pooling in the grooves on top of the frame rails, so it seems to me you have to either (i) situate the vents right over where the water would fall through the engine bay harmlessly (I can't think where this would be, though) or (ii) figure out a way to redirect the water to the ground. I don't fancy the Escort Cosworth louvers as they don't look period-correct to me -- surely there's a more appropriate type?

I know that in my area there are guys who will cut louvers in your hood for a couple bucks per louver, and you pick the size. They look like the typical louver you see in hot rod hoods. I picked up this particular person's literature at a swap meet/car show. Most of his business came from the hot rod crowd, but hey, most of us fit somewhat into that catagory. Maybe you have someone near you who'll do this job for ya.
As for water, go to Click on links, pick the MGV8 sites, to MGV8 conversions, then MGB thumbnails. Click on the body modification thumbnails, see Bonnet/Hood Vents. Whew! Then you can look at the different approaches to this taken by John Bourke and Martin Harvey.

Hope this helps,
Joe Ullman

The link for the site suggested by Joe is…
…I’m guessing you have seen it because you expressed an opinion of one of the louver styles shown.

You didn’t mention what year your MGB was; but there could be a few different styles of louvers that could be considered “period” during the eighteen-year production run of the MGB.

The most common are the rows of louvers that are punched directly in the panel, but they seem period for the fifties. For the sixties I picture chrome louvered inserts and the seventies brought about body colored plastic louvered inserts.

You might want to take a long walk through an auto salvage yard to look at other cars to see what you like and how it matches your idea of period correct. You can take the opportunity to see how they solved the rain issue. Try to picture how it will look on the very curved MGB hood and watch for vents or grills other than just traditional hood louvers. I recall seeing pictures of a vented MGB that used what was considered grills from a Pontiac and another one that used other vents from a Trans-Am.

MG never used any louvers during MGB production, but they do now! See if you can get your hands on a set from the Extreme MGs proposed by MG Rover.
George Champion

I was reading through the UK based MG enthusiast magazine (jan 2002) issue that featured an MGB powered by a Cosworth DOHC turbo.

To help with under bonnet ventilation they stated that "The scuttle air intake for the heater is now used to extract warm air from under the bonnet". With this they lost the heater so in the next sentence they said..."a revised heater arrangement using a midget matrix mounted under the dashboard is under development.

I can scan in some photos from the magazine if anybody wants them.

Graeme Weston

This thread was discussed between 03/04/2002 and 04/04/2002

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