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MG MGF Technical - A lighter way to enjoy an 'F'...

As a slight rebellion against the Dark Side (brought about by lack of funds mainly) I'm considering what could/has be done to reduce the overall weight of an F, rather than trying to increase the power. Particularly since less weight immediately means better cornering and braking too.
I believe the Cup cars were significantly lighter than roadgoing versions but I've not had an opportunity to examine one, has anyone any info?
Something German has been acquired to be the daily runner (main cause of reduced funds!) so I don't have to retain any 'creature comforts', although it will still be used on the road so I can't go too crazy. Been reading up on carbon fibre and other composites, and discovering that the process of replicating a panel such as a bonnet isn't *totally* beyond the reach of the amateur, but I'm also aware that structural rigidity is a Good Thing so care is needed...

Merry Christmas everyone!

Mike Hankin

Lose the sound deadening from the parcel shelf, the spare wheel, internal carpets.
Bob Millar

The easiest way of loosing weight without changing the appearance of the car would be to remove all the sound deadening carpet although not sure what weight we are talking about but it is a start.

You would need to lift the carpet up first to find the deadening carpet. There is quite a lot in the car foot wells behind the seats under the seats, on the engine cover.

Really when it comes to loosing weight just remove things which dont affect the rigidity of car like glove box, stereo but you also know what you will still need in the car so its up to you at the end of the day. There is of course changing body panels but that cost unless you find a team selling up parts.

Tom Randell

It isn't easy to save a signifant amount of weight without going into radical mods like removing the passenger seat and all carpets, the hood frame, replacing panels ....
Considering a weight of 1100 kg and a power of 120 bhp, to achieve the same effect on the weight to power ratio as a power increase of 10 bhp, you would have to remove 85 kg !

The carpet is already headed for the bin, although I wasn't expecting that alone to be a significant saving. But, having scared off the girlfriend :-( I can now remove the passenger seat. Having once had the bonnet drop on my head I know for a fact that it's quite heavy (the bump on my head estimated 30-40kg!), so replacing it with something lighter would be worth a go. Already got a plan for a mould, it seems once you have the right shape the process of making a carbon fibre isn't too difficult. Or, failing that, a friend has a laser scanner and owes me a favour! Doing the same with the boot is another possibility. Despite the likelihood of getting wet at some point (maybe winter isn't the brightest time to start this!), I'm prepared to sacrifice the hood & frame too. Did MGR ever confirm the weight of the SuperSports prototype? Losing the windscreen is off limits so I guess I'll not match it, but it'll be interesting to see how close I can get. Good point Fabrice, and I have already budgeted for the usual throttle body/exhaust/induction mods, and maybe even porting the head. My main objective though is to be able to carry as much speed around the bends, and that only comes down to grip & weight. Has anyone any experience of what difference slick tyres make? Obviously we're no longer talking road use ;-)

Mike Hankin

Slick tyres have made around 2 seconds per lap difference around Donnington.

There used to be a firm who could supply you lightweight doors, bonnets and bootlids. Think it was Krafthaus who became AH Assemblies... the guys who made the infamous front splitter. Not sure if they are still going. Try giving Techspeed a call. They should know.

Paul Nothard

A racing bucket seat for the driver would probably worth around - 20 kg... And the entry models are quite cheap.

That's funny, I'm also a weight weenie... but about bikes ;o)
see for example...


It's amazing how much difference removing

* carpet and all sound deadening material
* soft top hood and frame
* passenger seat

can make. I stripped out my car recently looking for water leak sources and found that my ABS kicked in far quicker than normal!!

By the way - unless you want to upgrade your wheel bearings and flanges to cup car spec items (pricey) don't put slicks on - half a dozen laps will kill the OEM bearings. Also, we (MGs on Track) don't allow slicks ;-)

Dave Livingstone

Thanks Fabrice, your link has at least helped me select the lightest helmet! Thanks Paul, I'll see what Techspeed can suggest - whilst I'm prepared to get my hands sticky, if there's an off-the-shelf option I'll extend the overdraft and save a steep (and possibly fruitless) learning curve. I'm presuming the comparison between road tyres and slicks was on the same car, with no adjustment to tracking?

Mike Hankin

Typed too slowly there... Thanks Dave for the cautionary note, hadn't actually considered the bearings. Hmm. OK, I'll stick with road tyres and put the saving towards a few MGs on Track sessions (maybe all my cornering speed needs is a bit more practice..!).
Mike Hankin

The cat can go, hardtops are much lighter than softops, windscreen and frame is structural. Door can be lightened (but with the loss of side impact protection), bonnet and boot can be made out of fibre (when doing this think bonnet pins rather than hinges, it makes the structure much simpler and lighter - and with it weighing next to nothing you can lift it off wholesale).
Windows and mechs can be done away with.
Airbags and ECU can go (and wireing - I beleive it is a compleatly seperate loom)

Hi Mike,

I spoke to Smith And Deakin a fews ago - they'll happily reproduce wings, bonnets and bootlids in glass fibre, so long as a template is provided. Could be another avenue to explore on the road to the 'lightside' ;o)

BTW I agree about the comments regarding seats: some decent sparkos are fitted to the MG GTF coupe concept, so we know that they fit, and out to save plently of lbs (if not ús)...
Rob Bell

In my case, I could lose 20 kg from my own body, eating less and drinking nothing...

And of course, practising more sports...

Have a good holidays...

If you really want to loose some weight change the subframes for race weight ones as well as the other stripping out and race seats.

DJC Dorrell

I think this says it all....
Alan Brooke

I quotefor the web page Alan Brooke gave ... "max muppets" I like that!
Cecil Kimber

This thread was discussed between 23/12/2004 and 30/12/2004

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