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MG TD TF 1500 - 52 TD questions

i have noticed that about 2% of the cars i see have chrome wheel trim rings on them while the rest do not.
also see that some cars have chrome headlight buckets and some are painted.
were these options in the day? Done just in certain years or car number range?
just preference for owners now?
Thanks
TLW Wright

Based on past threads I thing the wheel trim was only an aftermarket item but the factory did change from chrome to painted (and maybe back) headlight buckets during the TD run. Jud
J K Chapin

I believe the Korean war prompted the change from plated to painted headlamps. Chromium ore was mined in Korea and the war interrupted supplies.

Jan T
J Targosz

Quick search indicates no production of chromite ore in Korea. Perhaps war use may have limited the availability of chromite ore for non strategic uses, but I have only heard of that during WWII.
Leading producer of chromite ore is South Africa . Regards, tom
tm peterson

Jud, do we know when the factory changed to chrome headlamp buckets?

Geoffrey M Baker

My car was built in May, 1953 and has chrome headlamp buckets.
S.W. Franklin

There was a shortage of nickel not chrome around the time of the Korean war, I presume because of the war effort.
Some of our cupro/nickel coins were not struck during this period.
Ray TF 2884
Ray Lee

Best I have for right now:

http://www.mg-cars.org.uk/mgtd/mgtd_production.htm#Feature
Christopher Couper

Mine, TD25009 was built in February '53 and has chrome buckets but I have no idea whether they are original. Jud
J K Chapin

Looks like they changed from chrome to painted in late 51. Mine's a late (Sept) 51 with painted buckets. Looks like I could get away with upgrading :)
Geoffrey M Baker

My TD (Oct.52) has chrome buckets that were on it when I bought it in Jan.62. No way of knowing if they were original. We all have learned that the production line used whatever was available to keep the cars moving. TD 20660 EXR
Jim Merz

My July 1951 TD8986 came with painted buckets but it has since been upgraded to chrome as I got a pair of overstock ones from the Lucas warehouse in South San Francisco back in 1977.
John Quilter (TD8986)

Early TDs had chrome buckets with a spot welded base, and a King of the Road Emblem. Soon after the headlamp buckets were painted with a riveted on bucket and a King of the road emblem, and the late '53 had a chrome bucket with a riveted base and NO King of the Road emblem.
TD 28929 made on June 30 1953 left the factory with the later chrome buckets. I believe the change was after TD 25,000, but I don't know.
To my knowledge there were never FACTORY chrome trim rings available. They were a popular period accessory. Several owners have painted the center of the rims the same color as the interior and radiator slats. My car has been this way since 1953, but it did not leave the factory this way.
David

D. Sander

Late 1953 chrome headlight bucket with a riveted on base and no King of the Road emblem. This headlight has been with the car since June 30, 1953.

D. Sander

My TD (24570) was built 1/29/53 and has painted headlight buckets with no KOR emblem. I've own it since late 1963. Not sure if PO changed from chrome to paint.

Bill
TD24570
Bill Brown

Bill,
No KOTR emblem? Is the base riveted on or spot welded? Your car may be one of the last ones before chrome came back.
David
D. Sander

David,

My car TD24953 was reportedly untouched from 1972 until I purchased it 3 1/2 years ago. Build date 2/11/1953. It came painted with no emblems. Jud's car is right behind mine with chrome and I think no emblems. Can't remember his exact number but it's really low 25000's. If I remember correctly Jud's build date is also 2/11/1953. No way of knowing if either Jud's car or mine has original buckets, but I think it's likely that they both do.

Kirk
Kirk Trigg

David,
Spot welded.

Bill
TD24570

Bill Brown

My TD3966 (october 1950) has the chromed buckets. Originally the brackets were painted body color, but the PO changed that in chrome ones.
I wonder if the differences in time that apply to the buckets also go for the brackets. Or were the brackets always body color ex works?

Jasper
JL Nederhoed TD3966

Bill,
Your headlights look like the early ones that were chromed. I wonder if they were changed/painted at some point?
David
D. Sander

Bills are standard 52 and 53 headlamps, prior to the big rivet chrome at around 25000.

TD19629

Christopher Couper

Underside of my (TD25009, build date 11 Feb 1953)headlamp bucket. No KOR emblem. Jud

J K Chapin

David, not sure the buckets may have been altered. The PO was a dentist and I would think he would of had the resources to re-chrome if necessary. He did change the interior to a custom Naugahyde and spend many $'s on that. Like I said, I've owned this car since 1964 and they were always painted. My TD is the later model with round tail lights and center mounted wiper motor.

Bill
TD24570
Bill Brown

This thread was discussed between 22/01/2015 and 27/01/2015

MG TD TF 1500 index

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