MG-Cars.net

Welcome to our resource for MG Car Information.

Recommendations

Parts

MG parts spares and accessories are available for MG T Series (TA, MG TB, MG TC, MG TD, MG TF), Magnette, MGA, Twin cam, MGB, MGBGT, MGC, MGC GT, MG Midget, Sprite and other MG models from British car spares company LBCarCo.

MG TD TF 1500 - Crank hole misalignment

I hope the enclosed image is clear enough. If not let me know and I will publish them separately.

It is obvious that this car has been in an accident at some point. The hole in the radiator mounting bracket shows an interference when trying to insert the crank. The crank hits the housing for the steering rack. It seems to me that the steering rack has been shimmed up enough to cause this interference.
The engine mounts are new and seem to be in the right position.
Although it is pretty ratty looking the radiator mounting bracket is level and straight across the top.
I am thinking about removing the shims and see if I get enough clearance. There should be enough play in the tie rods.
Any ideas or suggestions are most welcome.
TIA,
Mort

Mort TD 1851

Unusual modification to the radiator support.

Tom
t lange

Mort

A trip to your local body shop may be in order so they can do a check of the frame to see if it may be pushed up.
Bruce Cunha

Mort, I have no idea what is wrong, but how do you put all those photos on one attachement?? I am dumber then h--l when it comes to computers.
Tom Maine (TD8105)

Mort, I think Bruce's advice is on the right track. The lip on the front cross member is bent and I wonder if someone ran over something that did the damage and twisted the cross member up in the back. That could account for the steering rack mounting brackets being lower and needing shims. That is assuming that the steering rack mounting points have not been damaged or inproperly repaired.
Jim Merz TD20660 RHD

hey guys, whether or not the front cross member is bent...shouldn't the relative geometry be the same between the steering rack and the radiator support? aren't they both bolted to brackets on the front cross member? the location of the shims would make me think the previous owner found the steering rack too low. which to me is counter-intuitive for the cross member being pushed up. mort, i think you should remove the shims and see how it looks. regards, tom
tom peterson

Mort,
I see the radiator mount is pretty hacked up. Have you checked to make sure it isn't on backwards? Now's the time!

I take it you can set it down on the springs & wheels, and I'm guessing there's a lot of weight off of it at the moment, but here goes... If you air your tires to your ideal pressures, with wheels straight, check your control arms, steering arms, axles, etc. aren't bent up, the upper & lower control arms are on symmetrical angles* left and right sides, then the tie rods ought to be on identical angles*, also (*with respect to the horizontal). That is what would tell you if that one thick shim is really necessary. The optimum steering is when the control arms and tie rods are as parallel as possible, otherwise, "bump steering."

On 2 TDs here, the steel front engine mounts have yielded and dropped, together with the thin steel flanges bending down on the rubber supports. Underengineered! Maybe it is an optical illusion from such a small picture (I did try blowing the photos up), but it looks like your steel flange is bowed down pretty good in img0225. Even going to a new rubber support, I fabricated a 1/2" aluminum bar to shim the engine back up to line up for the hand crank and to stiffen the thin flange on the rubber mount (see picture).

HOWEVER, you can spend days tweaking the engine, radiator support and rack & pinion, and then discover the radiator grille is way off and the bumper doesn't line up either. If you really intend to utilize the crank, you will want to fit the radiator and bumper on temporarily to see the bigger picture.


Jim Northrup

Mort, I have no idea what is wrong, but how do you put all those photos on one attachement?? I am dumber then h--l when it comes to computers.

Tom, Download a program by Goggle called (Picasa 3.8)! It's free, but does wonders with photos. Great for presentation, multiple photo collages. All kinds of photo arrangements are possible. A little complicated, it takes a little practice to use and understand the program, which becomes easier as you go. Enjoy. PJ
Paul J

Mort
In your photo 217 there appears to be a crease in the left hand chassis which would suggest some front end damage at some time in the past. I had a similar problem with my TD that had been in a front end shunt. I found that the point at which the radiator mount fitted to the chassis had not been straightened properly and therefore the crank didn't engage with the dog on the bottom pulley. I loose fitted the front bumper and the radiator support to check on the clearance and found that I needed to bend the chassis/radiator mounting point up by only 5/6mm each side to give enough clearance for the hand crank.
Best of luck.
Mick 52TD
Mick Cook

Tom,
I use a program called "Snag-It",, The program does many things, but one of them is that it allows me to place many photos into a word document, and then make that word doc into a postable "JPG" file,,,

SPW
STEVE WINCZE

Jim N. I almost hate to ask, but is your radiator support crossmember not on backwards? It appears from your image that the rad bolt holes are offset towards the front of the car rather than the engine side, although difficult to measure with the wrench obscuring the view, and the flange at the front seems too wide. Also the eye opening for the crank should extend below the flange, as per my image. It seems that this is a common assembly error on many cars. Respectfully Phil

Phil Atrill

Thank you all for those quick and varied suggestions. It gives me several things to examine. The car is currently on jack stands while I replace the tranny, wiring, floorboards etc. When it is down I will look at the engine mount and front shims and trueness of the frame.
Regardless of the alignment of the radiator and the engine I think the first problem to resolve is the relationship between the steering sleeve and the radiator bracket. I am including image 213 for clarity.
Jim Northrup, thanks for that image and the suggestions. I will follow up when it's on the ground.
Granted that the frame may be distorted but the radiator bracket is straight and level on top and is the same backward or forward. I hope I can remove some shims and create enough clearance for the crank. Then I will look at the engine and the radiator.

Mort TD 1851

To those questions about the presentation of the images, I am using a Mac. That makes computer life easier. I have had almost every version of the Mac since they came out in the mid 80's. I also have a good deal of experience with PC's and that is why I use the Mac as much as possible (99%).

Picasa is a good program for uploading many pictures to a web server so others that you have given permission to may view an entire album. Much more than e-mail or this web site can handle. But for this bulletin board you need something else.

Steve's suggestion of "Snag It" sounds like a good possible solution.

Any questions about how to do it on a Mac I will be glad to reply here or by e-mail.


Mort TD 1851

Phil and Jim Northrup, I took a second look at the radiator support. The radiator mounting holes are offset. Which is correct? Does it matter?
The lower picture is the back of my support. It does look like my support is on backwards. Turning it around would move the radiator closer to the thermostat and reduce some of that annoying offset in that short 2 1/4" hose. However, would the hood still fit?

Mort TD 1851

phil, i believe the shop manual photo agrees with you. jim's radiator bracket is reversed from that photo. see there are several posts in the archives from owners who say their cars were never apart that also show the radiator holes farther forward. i found from experience that is the only way my bonnet will fit properly. regards, tom
tom peterson

Mort
I just saw a bottom radiator support on ebay now, in the TD category.
Tom
'54 TF
Tom Norby

too slow to edit my last post..jim's pic shows the deep "V" forward..as does mort's. as you know, this position places the mounting holes toward the front of the car. which is opposite the shop manual photo but the same as horst schach's picture. regards, tom
tom peterson

My method of trying to remember which way the radiator support bracket is fitted is simple. The proper orientation is comparable to an older woman with pendulous boobs. In this case, only one side. The downward sagging front segment of the bracket is always located in front. No offense intended to some of the ladies.
Jim Merz TD20660 RHD

this factory pic should muddy the waters..deep "V" to the rear in this pic. regards, tom

http://www.mgcars.org.uk/mgtd/mgtd_heritage_pics.htm
tom peterson

If the TF and TD are the same, the rad bracket is mounted backwards. Mine was mounted the same way, which I had to change. I wonder why someone cut out the two knotches? PJ

Paul J

pj, second photo down in my previous post concurs with what you posted. i just went out and looked at my car and i see i misspoke in a previous post, the loop is toward the front as per the factory photo, deep "V" to the rear. which supports what phil posted here. mort would need to reverse his bracket to match the factory photos. regards, tom
tom peterson

I forgot a photo.

Jim Merz TD20660 RHD

The reason that these notches were cut, was to gain acces to the radiator fixing nuts. I know because it is not easy to get them in (or out) with the mounting bracket the wrong way round (mine is)

Regards

John
J Scragg

Tom Norby, Oregon, USA, tsnorby@mind.net

Mort
I just saw a bottom radiator support on ebay now, in the TD category.
Tom
'54 TF

Tom,
Thanks for the tip. I just bought it to replace my ratty looking one.
Mort TD 1851

Hei ll. another thing to consider is the distance between the oil pump and steering
column if you are lifting the engine or
lowering the sreeing racck.

Thoralf. Norway TD 4490
Thoralf Sorensen (TD4490)

Thank you Thoralf,
I discovered that when I jacked up the rear of the engine to remove the transmission. When I turned the steering wheel the oil pump scrapped the paint of the steering column.
Mort
Mort TD 1851

Mort,
After double checking your pictures, I suggest you don't reverse it! Our 3 TDs have that orientation.

Reversing the support will move the radiator a good inch closer to the firewall and the bonnet won't fit.

By the way, posting multiple photos isn't all that desirable since I usually have to downsize a single shot to upload. Detail suffers.

One way to pack more pictures together is copy and paste them into a single picture in decent Paint program (PaintshopPro for instance, Microoft Paint isn't up to it).


Jim Northrup

I examined our '51 and the engine is too low to engage the handcrank. Like the human anatomy, the front mount sags with age.

On our '50, after adding 1/2" aluminum shim to engine mount to line up with handcrank, I wound up shimming the rack/pinion up 3/16" (in picture) for a touch of clearance between steering column and oil pump.

A 1/4" - 3/8" shim on the engine mount may have been a good compromise.

It would be interesting to see the factory installation order. I'm willing to bet the radiator and supports were preassembled before the bracket is bolted to frame during chassis build, and then steering came after the radiator. Not going to lose any sleep over it.



Jim Northrup

Mines the opposite of Jim Northrup's, and everything fits fine, thanks.

Dave

Dave Braun

Mine is the same as Dave and Phil's.
Mike
Mike Hart (52 TD 16378)

mine matches the factory photo in the link i provided farther up the thread. opposite of the way jim has his installed. regards, tom
tom peterson

Dave,
I find this very intruiging. I thought about running to your website to see what you did.

I scrutinized the bonnet seams to radiator & tub, particularly on our '51 since I'm fairly sure that front end has never been torn apart.

In Horst Schach's Restoration Manual, two photos are not that clear, but page 59 looks like the thinner web towards the back, and on page 123, also, with the holes biased towards the front. His had been removed and could'v been reversed.

The illustration in the Moss catalog looks like a compromise between the front & back, and could argue the case either way.

The "mgtd_heritage_pics" referenced by Tom definitely shows the thin web forward, but that is not a production car, but a '49 pre-TD prototype.

Mort,
Glad to see you're going to have a decent looking support now. Did your TD have the radiator/fenders/bonnet already on with your support on in that direction? ...and did the bonnet fit??? Are you thoroughly confused yet? You might want to try your support in both directions just setting the radiator in place, and spend some time with a tape measure! If you don't have a hoist to work on it from below, you might want to try bolting radiator to the support and then bolt the support to the frame.

Jim Northrup

Well the variety of answers makes it perfectly clear what to do. I will try the radiator bracket both ways and see which fits my car the best.
Neither will resolve the vertical clearance problem between the steering rack sleeve and the bracket holes. The frame and the two brackets that hold up the steering sleeve have obviously been mangled at some point in time. I will wait till it's on the ground to evaluate the shimming and/or something else to get the crank in. I'll post some results in a week or two.
Thank you all for all the reports and suggestions. They all help
Mort
Mort TD 1851

This thread was discussed between 28/03/2011 and 31/03/2011

MG TD TF 1500 index

This thread is from the archive. The Live MG TD TF 1500 BBS is active now.