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MG MGF Technical - TF lamps into F do go?

Been giving this idea some thought of late - and reckon that it *could* be done.

But worth it?
Rob Bell

>But worth it?

For the improved lighting yes.... but expense hassle? What needs to be done?
Paul Lathwell

Worth it - YES YES YES

What needs to be done - new TF Bumper and light units. Also soem attachment plates available from Mike Satur. Bumper goes straight in. Wiring as the indicater front lights are in the headlight unit then soem wiring changes have to be carried out. My auto mechanic used the connecters from the F to build a wiring adaptor - can provide details vis photos

this has been the best thing I have ever done to the car.


>>What needs to be done - new TF Bumper and light units...

I suspect that Dr Bell has an alternative plan up his sleeve. Come on Rob, what are you thinking about :-)


I think that Rob is thinking that with a bit of judicious cutting the lamp assembly/reflector could fit the shape of the original F headlamp..... We need a bit of expanded text from the man himself.

He is a Doctor afterall, a bit of transplanting shouldn't be too difficult for him... If a pig's heart can go into a human chest and all that......

tim woolcott

Okay - have a look at this:

Dieter will recognise the silver MGF in question - it's his car LOL!

Happily Dieter had a couple of pix, one of his F, and another of a TF - both taken from the same angle, so it was pretty easy to quickly 'photoshop' the two images, and that's what you see here.

We know that the top edge of the TF lamp is exactly the same profile as the F - so that's the easy bit.

Pioneering work by David and Mike has clearly shown that you can install the TF unit into the MGF headlamp space.

The problem clearly comes with the elongated shape of the TF lamp.

It's easy to see that the TF integrated indicator unit needs to be cut off to get it to fit under the MGF glazing.

What is less clear (and I've not shown it in the picture above), is that the TF unit is not as tall as the F lamp. So we'd need to think about how the gap would be filled...

Hmm, nuts, probably should have up loaded more pix last night to show this... But the overall look is kinda cool though, if we can get it to work :o)
Rob Bell

Looks great Rob,

I prefer my F's shape... :-D

Sounds like a bit of hassle though..
maybe design a new back plate, and just move over the lights from the TF to the new back plate?
Hanah Kim

I don't think that the back plate is the problem Hanah, rather than the textured black plastic trim around the light lenses - it simply does not extend down as far as the F's in that bottom corner in the bumper (as you look at that picture).

I think we need to offer the lamp up to the MGF glass and see what needs to be done.

It's going to be very difficult to get a good looking result, I suspect...
Rob Bell

Rather than just default for TF lamps are there any other manufacturers lamps that would work? better?

I think that you'd be looking at even more work in that case Kingsley.

Not sure about dimentions, but if you took your suggestion further, and one developed a suitable mounting pod, there'd be no reason why you couldn't fit BMW lamps to the F - but I'm not sure, as I say, whether there'd be space.

At least with the TF lamps, most of the work has been done for us...
Rob Bell


Some form of rubber/plastic shroud round the TF light to make it up to F size??

Mark Catterall

That's my current line of thinking too, Mark.

What I need to do now is obtain some damaged TF lamp units and compare them with the standard MGF items to figure out the dimentional differences. Gaps, if they exist, will hopefully be reasonably easy to bridge.
Rob Bell

Just posted the composite image onto Jerry's site:

Hmm, perhaps, looking at it again, I'm getting worried about nothing: the angles are slightly different between the two images, which might explain why the lower profiles don't match up well.

What do you chaps think?
Rob Bell

>>What do you chaps think?

That you won't really be able to tell without the real thing in front of you - photos and computers are all very well, but ...

Definitely worth persuing though Rob.


Price of complete front end change to TF spec in Moss catalogue is approx £600 and if you go for rear bumper change as well it's another £200 on top, personaly i think im'e with Hanah on this one i like f as is,that is until seen one done and would then change my mind i bet! Dave
DC Morris

I don't know how much Mike charges for his TF conversion kit Dave, but the Moss kit doesn't sound all that competitive.

In any case, I'd like to keep the F front end of my car. It is an MGF after all! LOL

The TF lamps would look a little like Trophy items - a 'Trophy plus' look then! ;o)
Rob Bell

>>In any case, I'd like to keep the F front end of my car.

Me too.


Well thats sorted then Ha! no orders from us, £600? think i'll book a hol, Dave T6 DCM.
DC Morris

Why not make it really easy ... swap your F for a TF. Seems a waste of money to me.

Gaz R

Best option IMHO would be to keep the tf bulb units and vacum form/injection mould a new housing to fit in the existing casing.

I'm sure you're right Kingsley. But doesn't setting up to produce injection moulded plastic parts cost an awful lot of money to do?

Been following the ABC Design 'snake-eye' MG ZR rear light cluster story from a distance. Investment in tooling for this lamp cluster was enormous, and the production run will not become profitable until after a 1000 units have been sold.

I don't believe that this is going to be an option for us. Much cheaper option would be to modify second hand TF units - unless someone tells me otherwise? Hey, maybe I'm wrong and injection moulding is dirt cheap???
Rob Bell

Rob injection moulding is dead cheap, the one problem the tooling would cost a lot which would take a long time to pay for itself or each light would be mega expensive also you would need 2 tools as the lights are handed.
A hacksaw and file is much cheaper.

I have looked at alternative twin head light conversions which are in demon tweak and sorry to say the F is not one which they make them for.

I am game for this conversion as I like the F looks but just want the better headlights.


Tom Randell


Take a look in the new MGF/TF FAQ in the section...

Common Problems - Lights - TF Headlight Converters.

There are some images there you may find useful. ;-)
Paul Lathwell

Just a thought ....

has anybody thought of buying a TF for all the 'improvements' and retro-fitting F light clusters?

Guys seems as though you are going down the wrong path here ,trying to modify the TF lamps to fit the F. Iwould modify the F lamps by using a different back plate and insert 90mm head lights (Xenon!!!) and a halogen dipped beam,relatively simple, I think;-)Using a Trophy style black surround.
Who wants 'em??

Mike I agree

Other alternative pray for a front end collision and fit it out qith TF parts. Thats what I did. Amazing the power of prayer especially if you suffer from religious indegestion.


Xenon lights Mike, count me in!! Living down a country road makes it a perilous journey home every night :¬/

Would this give us the blue tinge also??



Mentioned the Xenon option as well to Rob.
Though the problem is (IMO) you need outside washer or wipers and height correction.
Is it ?
Dieter K.

I'm interested - depneds, of course, on price!!
Jason H
Jason H

>Though the problem is (IMO) you need outside washer or wipers and height correction.
why? do they take up space in the footwell?
Will Munns

mike (posted anonymously), sounds like an interesting idea, and Dieter had already suggested this to me as well. The same opinion from two people whom I so highly respect should be telling me something, but the TF idea is something I'd like to persue a little further...


Okay, the TF lamp efficiency is no better than an F - and actually that isn't the reason why I'd like to try this conversion.

First is the 'projector lamp aesthetic'. Second is that we should hopefully get away from the dipped beam diffuser deterioration that we get with MGF lamps. And third, well, it'd be something different ;o)

But yes, I too would be interested to hear more about your ideas regarding adapting the current lamp to accept xenon and halogen bulbs. But not a terribly cheap option???
Rob Bell

Rob, the modification would be new lamp units in the existing lamp body, it isn't a question of just changing bulbs. This would give the look of a projector lamp, could even have a ali trim ring as well;-)
The xenon lamp (gas discharge) units are Hella and IIRC are around 225 pounds each the halogen units are about 40 pounds so if you had 2x xenon,main and 2x halogen dipped plus some adapter bits this would still be around the 360 mark or 220 for four halogen units.

Mike, that's interesting - the prices are a lot cheaper than I'd been thinking of (ie 500+ quid for the Xenon).

220 for the Halogen conversion sounds good - how long would it take you to develop these?
Rob Bell

Oops, yeah you are right Rob, 2 x225 (xenon units)+2x 40 for the halogen units plus say 60 for the adapter mounting panels = £590.00. Good job you are on the ball could have cost me !!


That'll be a pint then, the next time I see ya! ;o)

Assuming that you had enough interest Mike, how long would it take to get the new lamps made up?

Sadly not soon enough for MoT man WRT my car... (any luck with the diffusers?)
Rob Bell

Excuse a simpler though...

Does anything else have lamps that are anything like the F's in shape? (and preferebly non-plastic lenses inside!) Some of the other modern cars have totally enclosed multi-light sets: would any of them fit?

Or are you constricting yourself to just MGR parts?


Another idea: an adapter for the dip lamps so that they'll take an H4 and just use the dip part of it?

That way you can do away with the lens, as there's an integral reflector in the bulb...

I adapted a m/c headlamp years ago so that it took an H4 in place of the very dull original unit :-)


>>Though the problem is (IMO) you need outside washer or wipers and height correction.
>why? do they take up space in the footwell?

They are mandatory to pass (at least) the german TUEV/MOT (not speaking about other problems you might get with them by using different lights than original :-)
Using the TF-Lights as an exchange to the existing light cluster has one additional benefit: you can retrofit the originals for TUEV/MOT
Andreas H

I think Scoobies have about the same light clusters. And for these Demon Tweek does a kit without the glass cover. The have kinda te same shape of the *F*´s and include indicators!

Looking as I walk into town, it looks like there could be a couple of possible options. Newer Golf's have a lamp cluster that looks like it could fit (though I've not taken a tape measure to one - that would look suspitious!)

Other alternative (Mike!): a way of fitting the double headlights from a 45/ZS or 75/ZT. I think they'd go, but they'd need some form of surround as they are 2 separate round units...


Was reading some stuff on Rav4 forums (as my mum's Rav4 has rattles too! Damn it), and went over some of the HID coversions they had on their cars.

Relatively cheap about $350~$400 at eBay. They do sell H1s and H4s. It's a relatively simple swap by the look of the kit, just need to make some holes at the back of the headlights (the black covers) so that the wires can run in and out, thus some other electronic connections can be made.

Initially was worried about the heat produced from those, (making the situation worse by melting those silver reflective surfaces) but they are 35W, and produce less heat than conventional halogen lights that we are using right now. Seen some of the photos and they look great and bright.

One problem is that I heard there are some European laws that don't allow conversion kits in the headlights as they do not have an auto-leveling function which is available on factory optioned cars. They provide the horizontal level of the bulbs at all times to stop blinding the drivers from the opposite side. That's why you see the white and blue lights flashing when Mercs, or some Audis go past.

Any thoughts on this one? There is no such law here.

If you want the brightness for your safety, might be better to opt for this than going for TF conversion.
Hanah Kim

Bound to be similar laws here, although I've not heard about them? Usually you can get away with a surprising amount with aftermarket items in the UK ;o)
Rob Bell

Hi Rob,

and it's not that expensive either I thought..

400 US is like... 230 pounds or something.


Hanah Kim

or 800 Kiwi

Would these bulbs work better in TF-style lamp enclosures I wonder?
Rob Bell

According to the Philips (automotive) site

Note “Please note that Xenon light can only be fitted by a professional car dealer. To comply with European legal requirements Xenon light can only be fitted to your car in combination with an “automatic leveling device” and a headlamp whindshield clearning system”. To find out more, please consult our FAQ section.”

This thread was discussed between 11/02/2003 and 25/02/2003

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