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MG TD TF 1500 - Ethanol strikes again?

My local bass player friend called me and said his TD kept quitting and acted starved for gas. I found minimal fuel pump output, which would eventually stop. The inline filter in the suction side (I know it is on the wrong side- it has been in that location since 1969 according to the owner!)did have fuel and a bunch of gunk in it. We bypassed the filter, and it pumped a little better- and delivered about 1/8" of gunky water in about 1" of gas into a cup. The car had not been driven for a few months, and was stored in an unheated garage. We drained the tank, flushed it a bit, changed the filter and pump, and back in business. I always blame the ethanol- what do you guys think? George
George Butz

I was pleasantly surprised upon moving to North Carolina to discover that fuel without ethanol is available at the pump, at least here along the coast. A lot of people use it in their outboard motors. In Illinois I think ethanol was mandated by law because of all the corn grown there.
Bob McLeod TD 5618


Just came in the house from the garage where I had been cleaning up for most of the day. Decided to see what the MG would do after a long winters nap. Key on, pulled full choke, pulled started and she fired and died. One more pull and she was running on all four. Held her at 2k for about a minute and then let her idle. Amp meter charging, 70# oil pressure cold dropping to 60# at idle when 70 degrees C. Tomorrow clean her up and a first drive of the season. Yes, I agree no alcohol fuel is the answer. Stopped using the 10 percent stuff two years ago and she runs almost like a modern fuel injected vehicle.

Are you other southern dudes getting the urge to take a ride?

Best regards,

Jim Haskins 1953 TD.
J. M. Haskins

A long winters nap in Florida, what the hey. I know it gets cool up near Jacksonville, I've been there in February but come on, MG owners are not wimps.

On another note, there is no ethanol-free gas in the NYC metro area so count your blessings if you can find it where you live.

Jim Neel

Do you know by chance a Don Macleod that used to live in the Jacksonville area and had a black MG-TD.
Sandy Sanders
ss sanders

Jim N, Winter is our best driving season, but we did have a lot of wet rainy days this year. Actually the guy was just too busy to drive it for a while. There are a couple ethanol free stations a few miles from here. The marina and airport using airport transfers sevenoaks will only sell it to you in gas cans due to no road taxes being paid on it. George
George Butz

With the alcohol mix usually you won't find any water in the tank; one of the few upsides.

What you may have had was soo much water that the alcohol couldn't hold it and it actually separated, called, coincidentally, phase separation.

While a little water mixed with the alcohol will further mix with the gas, and burn, a lot of water will layer out in an nonburnable mix in the bottom of the tank. It's easy to get mad at the alcohol but with non-ethanol gas, that much water would probably bring you to a halt anyway.

Since having the engine stop due to water in the fuel, or for any reason for that matter, in aircraft, there's a provision to drain the accumulated water from the tank sumps. Two of my tractors have the same provision. It's too bad that there's no drain in seldom used cars.
JE Carroll

We have a Shell fuel quality here in Norway which is unleaded 98 octane without any ethanol. For winter storage I fill up the tank before having added 100 ml of isopropanol. Store the car in a garage wich is kept above freezing with the aid of a small electric oven, and try to start the engine and pump the brakes every two- to three weeks. Works for me.

I did run on 95 octane 5% ethanol the first couple of years I owned the TF, until I learnt about the "unethanoled" alternative. I also use a few teaspons of 2-stroke oil in the petrol when I refuel. Approaching 9.000 miles in my ownership - I bought it in june 2010. Best decision I ever made to buy it? Was out driving again yesterday, +5 degrees celcius and raining. With sidescreens and roof up, and the Mojave heater on fan speed 1 I had a lovely drive, made even better by 1960s Rolling Stones from the loudspeakers. Sorry, I do get carried away sometimes.


Jan Emil Kristoffersen

You can buy it in Oklahoma, usually Conoco has it. About 15 cents more a gallon. But, I've burnt corn gas in the 72 since 2006 and have had no bad results from it! Plenty of power, runs smooth etc. The engine has to be set up for it, mixture, timing, spark plug heat range and NO carbon in the cylinders. I'd rather have the engine set up to burn corn gas, as that's just about all you can get anymore. Because of that, I mix mine with Marine Sta-Bil, supposedly counter acts the alcohol. Works for me. PJ
Paul S Jennings

Sandy, I don't know him. There is another MacLeod in the Detroit area with a TD. We should adopt the TD as out official clan car.
Bob McLeod TD 5618

Don/Jan Macleod lived in Jacksonville and had a unique MG-TD. It was made in Germany. I know that some time ago he moved up north and now has relocated further south.
FYI. My maternal grandmother was a Macleod from Stornoway Isle of Lewis.
esane AT msn dot Com
ss sanders

Sandy, small world! We will be in Stornaway this summer as well as a week on the Isle of Skye.

Bob McLeod TD 5618

This thread was discussed between 22/03/2014 and 23/03/2014

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