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MG MGB Technical - any 12V battery fit?

I need to replace the two 6V batteries on my '68 B and wondered if there was a 12V battery that fits in one of the battery bays. I have seen reference to a group 26 battery on US forums but wondered if there was a UK battery that would do the job.
Steve Church

Don't know if you can get them over there but here I use the American made endurant BCM650. They are expensive but much cheaper than 2 6V ones. It fits straight in, you don't need a clamp - just put a piece of 3 x 2 timber on top and let the battery cover hold it down. I got 14 years out of the one in my car - 66 GT. I have fitted many to customers cars and only had one fail - after 4 years. Move the earth lead over to the RH side.
Garth
Garth Bagnall

Type 063 will fit without any probs (maybe trim the base depending on make)
K Harris

"(maybe trim the base depending on make)"

Which nullifies the guarantee, be aware.
P Hunt

There's been quite a bit of blog about this subject with most people appearing to go for a battery that required modification to the clamping points or some bending of metal. My conclusion was that a Bosch S 4000 with base dimensions of 175mm x 175mm, and a height of 190mm would be ideal. It's 42Ah and 390A CCA is quite adequate for a B. No mods of any kind required as far as I can tell. When I last looked it was available from Alpha Batteries for 65.
Let us know how you get on.
Richard Coombs

I've used the 063 in both my roadster and Gt without any modifications having to be made except for the need to flatten the retaining angle for the 6v batteries. Alternatively a piece of plywood can be fitted in the base of the carrier to equal the depth of the upturn. Incidentally I fitted the battery in the passengers side carrier as this leaves the drivers side one clear for the fuel pump. The capacity of 43Ah is more than adequate for the B and one of mine is now 4 1/2 years old and still going strong. To undertake this mod it will be necessary to fit an insulated cable joiner to the end of the main cable and carry that over to the nearside box fitting a new cable clamp to it. Battery hold down clamps will need to be fabricated to fit but these are relatively easy to find in a breakers yard and the rods can be cut and bent to fit one of the holes in the side of the carrier.
Iain MacKintosh

Thanks Richard, I've just found one of the Bosch batteries for 43 inc delivery after Googling it. Looks ideal.
Steve Church

Hmm price just gone up to 53 since I enquired. Guess they cottoned on that it was too cheap!
Steve Church

I use a type 063 on my '73 B, no modifications to car or battery although I have a couple of pieces of high-density foam to raise the battery off the battery cage lip. Wood would do just as well.

53 delivered is still a good price for a Bosch battery, I paid 32.99 earlier this year for an unbranded Type 063 battery delivered from www.carbatteriesdirect.net came with four year gurantee for what it's worth.
Mike

I heard last week that a Fiat Punto battery - type 202 - fits perfectly and is the same size as a 6v.

I have seen them with between 340 and 390 CCA.
Dave O'Neill 2

I believe that the Bosch S4000 is a type 202.

I measured the bottom of my battery bay and it was about 205mm wide. Seems not quite enough for an 063. It is a Heritage shell though so maybe different to originals. Guess I'll make up a dummy battery section of correct footprint and see.
Steve Church

Here in the States my son found the Everlast battery 12v size 17HF at Auto Zone which fit the battery well with room to spare. We are resurecting a 72 MGB.
B Barbour

The endurant I suggested is 650 cranking amps & it fits perfectly into the original rubbers in the box. Also totally maintenance free.
Garth
Garth Bagnall

Dave - did you send an instrument voltage stabiliser gizmo to a Vic Birch in Essex a couple of years go? He needs help with it and someone directed him to me.
P Hunt

Me? No.
Dave O'Neill 2

I have never worried about a Warranty on a Battery, after all they cost less then 1/2 a Tank of Fuel and last many times longer!!!
K Harris

After trying my daughters Peugeot 106 battery (a type 063) in the car it looks like I shall be going for one of these. Whichever compartment I use I shall need to extend the positive cable. Can anyone suggest a joining connector to do this? I can always solder the wires together but wondered if there was some kind of ferrule that would do the job.
Steve Church

Durite manufacture a sleeved connector complete with two screws and an insulating sleeve which works very well. These should be available at a good motor factors although I got mine from Lucas UK sadly no longer with us
Iain MacKintosh

K Harris, maybe you've never had a battery fail under warranty. I have, and I wouldn't have appreciated the vendor telling me "never mind, they cost less than 1/2 tank of fuel".

Steve - why do you want to extend a cable? If the battery goes in the right-hand side you can simply move the earth cable from the left battery compartment to the right. If the new battery is that much higher than the original you need to be very careful it isn't going to short out on the cover.
P Hunt

Remember the "Lifetime Guarantee" batteries from Unipart and Charlie Browns, seemed just right for the classic car owner who may keep his car for 20 years.
But Charlie Browns went bust, and I don't think Unipart do car batteries now.
c cummins

""K Harris, maybe you've never had a battery fail under warranty. I have, and I wouldn't have appreciated the vendor telling me "never mind, they cost less than 1/2 tank of fuel".""

I didn't say the vendor should say that, but they do fail from time to time and they are not that expensive in the Grand scheme of things !!

Ken

Not a tight a*** :-)

K Harris

I just had a $135 muffler fail on my truck. I installed it in early '96. It had a limited lifetime warranty. The only sticking point was that I had to have the original receipt. Who keeps receipts for that long? I do. To the dealers dismay, I brought the old muffler in along with the receipt. You should have seen the look on his face. All it cost me was freight from the factory, which the only place in the country that had it. I'm about to install a new water pump on my supercharged engine. The original County brand lasted 7 years, but covered only 13,000 miles. I have a spare, but I'm waiting for a new one that I ordered. It, too, has a lifetime warranty. I keep my vehicles forever, so it pays to get a part with a good warranty. RAY
rjm RAY

I was intending to put the battery in the passenger side for better weight distribution. But even in the driver's side I think I need a slightly longer cable if the +ve terminal is on the prop shaft side of the battery. I must admit to not trying my trial 063 battery on the drivers side. I'll have a closer look over the w/e.
Steve Church

Steve, I wouldn't worry about the weight distribution. The weight of the battery is small compared to the weights for humans so the springs will easily cope with the difference, just as they do when you drive alone.
As to the longer +ve lead, if you fit a master cut-off switch on the rear heelboard the old lead will easily reach that and you just need to get a length of new lead and fit with suitable connectors. Are you sure you don't have enough free length. I found mine to be overlong to reach the front and you might find an inch or so from pulling it through.
Have you fitted the 063 yet? I was hoping you'd go for the Bosch to be my experimenter. I'll be doing it myself some time soon(ish).
Richard Coombs

If you fit the switch in the heelboard where the 12v cable runs down behind it you only need to cut the existing cable and solder lugs to the ends, and it ends up longer anyway.

Look carefully at the switch, the ones I have seen are designed to be mounted on the front of the panel, but need a large irregular hole to be cut, which then has only a very small overlap in places to prevent water coming into the cabin. If you fit it on the back of the panel you only need to cut a circular hole, which is much smaller and gives a larger overlap, which should be treated with Waxoyl Underbody Seal or similar.
PaulH Solihull

This thread was discussed between 14/07/2010 and 20/07/2010

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