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MG MGF Technical - HGF .....Yay

Right looks like the gasket is on the way out! Small bits of mayo on the dipstick etc.

So with the MOT due in 3 months and I know I need to get a new CAT and headlight I've been doing some looking for a new motor.

Thou it would appear a car with any kind of character is going to cost a packet I thought I'd hang on to the old F and have a go at spending some money on her and getting her back to the original condition as I really like it!

Anyway I'm guessing a HG replacement is going to be around 400 - 500. Now I think I could spend that money better elsewhere so am going to do it myself and found an aritcle on the t'internet, a very helpfull article by Mr Parker. Unfortunatly it either wasn't completed or you have to subscribe to the MGOC site (it isn't clear) does anyone know if Roger got round to finishing it off??
He got to the point of removing the off side engine mount and dropping the engine to replace the Cam belt!

Rich Baker

you know, after that it's all refitting is the reverse ;-)

Will Munns

There will be someone around who can lend you a engine service manual, you don't have to remove the pullies as long as you don't need to skim the head, and this makes the job a whole lot easier!

replace the waterpump, belt and tensioner while you are in there, if you don't you will regret it in a year!
Will Munns

looks like it has it included (for 4 it's worth a punt?)
Will Munns

Excellent looks like I'll get one then!

Am pretty sure it hasn't warped as the car hasn't over heated just getting drops of may on the dip stick!
All seems normal at the mo, no temps issues or real drop in the water level!
Am thinking it happened about 4 months ago, the radiator developed nice leak which I just (i know I know) kept topping up for about 4 weeks before I got round to changing and it had run pretty low on coolant on a couple of occasions!

yeah I know its the refitting thats going to cause the bleeding and a whole new dictionary of swear words!

I've got a little list of things I need!

So far

cam locking tool
gasket (obviously)
engine bolts
cam belt
coolant pipes
oil, coolant etc

new to the list is

water pump

Anything else?

Rich Baker

Do you really have a HGF ??. How much is <drops of Mayo on the dipstick> ??
It is common to get a little mayo due to condensation at this time of year if the car is not regularly given a good hot run. How much is a real drop in water level ??.
+ alternator belt !
Geoff F.
G. Farthing

The dipstick has an intermittent light covering up about 2/3's of its length with a reasonable blob on the bulb.
I've also spotted a couple of small (about 2mm dia) blobs of, off white stuff in the water!

Car dosen't really do short journeys.

Mainly 36 miles to work on the m-way in the morning and the same in the evening!
So she gets a good run everday!

Its 10 years old and 94,000 miles thou so not done too bad!

Another question the metal dowels they introduced later in the production. Would I need to get the head and block machined to get them to fit or are they interchangable?
Rich Baker

engine bolts are usually not required, the manual tells you how to work out if they are over-length.

You'll want some flushing stuff to clear the oil from the water and visa-versa.

you will need a bloody great breaker bar to remove the crank bolt and a torque wrench to 120Nm to do it back up.

You will also need some way of locking the crank while you work.
Will Munns

Arr....I'd gathered some form of scaffolding might be necessary!

If i leave the engine in gear won't that hold the crank in place plus the hand brake on?
Rich Baker

no, not even close

you will need an accomplice, and be prepared to sit on the car, stand in the boot etc etc

Will Munns

"sit on the car, stand in the boot"

Err sit in the for applying the foot brake I guess?

Not sure about standing in the boot thou???
Rich Baker

I personally would never replace the headgasket on a K Series without skimming it, its not expensive to have done (about 30) and when you look at the face of the head it usually has marks in it where the piston liners have been pulled into the head.

It makes it a lot easier not to skim the head but may prove a false economoy.

Good luck, its not a difficult job to do and access in the rear of the F despite a lot of garages opinions is pretty good.


Andrew Smith
A D Smith

Before I get on with ordering the stuff anybody got a guide price for Mike S doing the work......?

Rich Baker

>Err sit in the for applying the foot brake I guess?

I guess your garage might be a bit bigger than mine, but in order to get the right position to make sure everything went back in line I had to sit/stand/squat on the bulkhead
Will Munns

Right well the job is well and truly underway!

Bad light has just stopped play!

Done so far!
New landrover bottom rail fitted. Sump back on!
New L.R. headgasket fitted
Engine all screwed back together!
New water pump and tensioner fitted!
Old cam belt off, new one on!
Engine back on all mounts!
Now I had a quick go at getting the cam belt back on and flippin eck I don't know how I'm going to do it!

Any hints for tomorrows fun???



home straight!

if you have the manual tensioner then remove the locking bolt that goes thru the slotty bit (damn my explanations need work), this means that you can move the adjustment further up than before giving you a precious few extra mm.

then it's a case of getting the belt on the side without adjustment, I did this by rotating the crank by 1/2 tooth, belt over by 1/4 width and then cranking the crank back by the 1/2 tooth to bring the belt back tight before trying the 'adjustable' run on the other side of the engine
Will Munns


Well sort of!

About 6:30 last night all completed!

Started her up and apart from the exhaust blowing (damaged one of the cat nuts) all seemed ok!

warmed her up and all seemed ok.

Followed the bleed instructions no probs!

Finally went to take her out and she didn't want to go at all!

Lumpy no power and generally a bit s***e.
Am thinking I've got the cam wheels / crankshaft a notch out!

Is this typcial symptoms?

I couldn't see properly due to bad light so will be checking again tonight!

Oh and thanks for the help all!

Yup, remember that you don't align the cam wheels horizontally, because the engine is at a slant.

With the locking tool out of the car, locate the middle peg(s?) and colour them in in a really obvious colour, this will make it easier to tell where the misalignment is (with a mirror)
Will Munns

He he right after an hour and a halfs worth of swearing and bleeding over most of the car finally go the cambelt all back on and timed correctly. Finally drives like it should!

Just a quick hint for anyone thinking about this. In the end I loosened the adjuster off till it was just about hanging on, this gave a bit more play in the belt and made getting it on a dam sight easier.

One last thing!

When I took the head off I noticed lots (about 10mm deep) of oil sitting on the pistons and quite alot of oil sitting in the water channels on the side nearest the engine!

Can I assume that this happened when I moved the head as there seems to be quite alot in the water now. I cleaned it out as best I could at the time but didn't get close to getting it all!


yup, when the head came off. I guess you didn't mop the oil out of the head before moving it.

The crap in the pistons will (probably already has) blown thru, but you should get some coolant flush to flush out the oily water (otherwise it will just coat everything and make heat transfer less efficient)
Will Munns should have done this first!


Right trip to halfords tonight, and no I didn't mop any oil out!

Lessons for the future I think!

Cheers for the help Will, much appreciated!

Just wait for next weeks installment when I change the pas pipes over!

>when I change the pas pipes over!

Dear God no....

That job is impossible in an F!

(electric PAS)
Will Munns

Oh crap. I've got a PAS rack on my desk at the moment and about 5 pas pumps....must have it on my brain!

I meant coolant pipes!

coolant = pas.....don't you know anything!


Ah... coolant pipes are a piece of cake.

Coolant hoses are a bit more tricky (say fitting the PRT[hermostart]) but still _way_ easier than the head.

Just get the back of the car reasonably high up. The hoses have a white stripe on them which should coincide with the white stripe on the pipes.
Will Munns

This thread was discussed between 30/01/2007 and 20/02/2007

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