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MG TD TF 1500 - Fire Extinguishers and Mounts

I'm writing a Tech Tips article about fire extinguishers for our club's February newsletter.

> Will you give me your thoughts, suggestions, and experiences with fire extinguishers and with mounting them in your MGs ... TABC, TD-TF, MGA, MGB, GT, and midgets? I am especially interested in how/where you mounted your extinguisher in various MGs. Also looking for suggestions on extinguisher size plus any other info that you can provide.

I'll discuss dry chemical extinguishers and Halon/Halotron "clean extinguishers" in the article.

Thanks for your help,

LM Cook

It's just rolling about in the back compartment, hadn't thought about mounting it :) But a good idea. Mine is vey small (about 10 inches tall) and is a First Alert model.
I'm sure I long ago lost the mount fittings so I would have to make something up.
I bought it the day after I watched fuel spraying from inside the braided stainless steel hose over the carbs and down onto the hot manifold.
Geoffrey M Baker

Zip tied to the scuttle hoop.

Very expensive, but Halon makes a small chrome extinguisher that's about as nice as it can get for our cars. Because of it's size and nice looks, it should look good anywhere in the car and easy to mount. I don't have one, but it's on the list. PJ

One of the requirements in the NEMGTR Safety Fast inspection is that the car must have a fire extinguisher that is within reach of the driver when he's seated. Probably the most common location is attached to the floor directly in front of the passenger seat. This is just about touching the seat at its foremost position. Bud
Bud Krueger

Like Geoffery, it is just sitting in the back not mounted.
12" tall by about 5" round. Dry chemical powder type.
I would love to get a Halon one but to extensive for my blood, which sounds funny considering what I spend on the car and parts!

One suggestion is talk about clean up.
if you ever have to use the dry chemical do not try to wash away the residue, vacuum it, use a wisk broom and the shop vac.

Lew I like the idea of attaching it to the scuttle hoop, invisible but close at hand. However, zipties would need you to cut them to release it?
Geoffrey M Baker

Duh! Sorry, Lew, you ziptied the mount to the scuttle. Sorry, just having a senior moment.
BTW my extinguisher is a "dry chemical" unit.
I think I'll buy this:
and attach it to my rollbar.

Geoffrey M Baker

What about those automatic ones for in the engine bay? Anyone have one of those ? My dad had one 30 years ago but haven't seen one since. Perhaps the racing community still have them ?

And yes mine is rolling around the passenger foot well..

D Moore

The one in our TD (halogen) is clipped to the back of the seat, just above the starting handle. Cheers - Dave
DW DuBois

A 2-1/2 lb. Dry chem ABC rated fire extinguisher would suffice for any emergency fire situation that we may have with our cars. They hold enough extinguishment powder, and are small enough to mount just about anywhere. Just make sure they are mounted in an area safe from logical heat and fire sources. Most importantly, training to use portable extinguishers is key. Can't put the fire under control if you miss, no matter the extinguisher used.

Dry chem makes a huge mess, as the fine powder gets "everywhere". CO2 types are good, but unavailable in a small size. No powder clean-up. Halide types are banned here, so it is not an option. They are good around electronics, but are a health hazard.

Mount them where they can be gotten easily when needed... we all know how fast fires can progress.

How do I know all this.... well 43 years in firefighting.
... CR
C.R. Tyrell

Yes, Geoff, only the holder is zip tied. The extinguisher is free to be released with only a flip of the latch.

In any accident involving significant g forces, a fire extinguisher can become a lethal projectile if not securely mounted to something very solid. (this eliminates common tiewraps, imho). Ideally a location which prevents the extinguisher from becoming a projectile should be thought about. Perhaps tucked up in the rear under the top on the rear bulkhead? A solidly but quickly released mounting device is problematic.
The Halon extinguisher I have in other cars came from Aircraft Spruce and is retained with two SS bands and overcentre snaps. It's mounted in the trunk.
T W Moore

Mine is just behind the seat and always the top item. I never drive with the top up so its secure under the tonneau cover. If I am stationary for a long time (ie at a show) it sits beside one of my rear wheels.

If there IS a fire in my car the first thing I am going to do is exit the vehicle, then reach behind my seat and get the extinguisher. If the time it takes me to get out of the car and grab the extinguisher is not enough, then the car was history to begin with and no small extinguisher was going to make any difference.
Christopher Couper

I guess FE-36 clean guard will be an optimum.

sorry the links ended in a tapeworm - so once again:

or ..

.. see the difference


Theres this (page in German only, unfortunately)

A piece of tube filled with an environmentally acceptable substitute of halon that is mounted under the hood and melts when there is an engine fire - for our cars probably the most likely type of incident. The only alternative I can think of is a Rallye type extinguisher tank with outlets in the engine room (which is big and expensive)

A club member once had a Lucas type electrics fire under the dash - by the time he managed to stop the car, the fire had already done most of the damage and fortunately did not progress any further.

I cant imagine --after having brought the car to a stop at a suitable place -- getting the extinguisher untangled --- opening the bonnet side panel with a fire under it and then using the extinguisher...
So Im a bit doubtful about the usefulness of an extinguisher in general, nevertheless there may be cases where it is of use and better to have one than not. Given the damage that powder does, which is probably just as bad as a fire, I got myself a CO2 one. It is big indeed, but at least looks good in polished chrome. The only sensible place I can think of to mount it is in the passenger footwell at the very front. There it wont fly around in case of an accident (which mostly generates forward Gs.). In the back theres too much stuff just thrown in all the time - I would not find it when I needed it....

Rgds, Mike

Mike Fritsch

Thanks for your suggestions, recommendations, and real-world experiences. Please continue to discuss your fire extinguisher set up. Also looking for mounting locations for MGBs

I sat three sizes of extinguishers in my TF to see what location works best for me.

An extinguisher mounted on top of the gearbox cover seems to work best. It will accept a 5-lb extinguisher without taking space from the cockpit. Might need to remove the extinguisher to check the gear oil level. I wouldn't trust sheet metal screws to hold it, so the gearbox cover would need to be removed to secure the bracket with bolts and nuts.

>> Any ideas how to secure a bracket to the gearbox cover without removing the cover?

FTFU has a bracket that pinches the gearbox cover:

I tried setting an extinguisher in front of the passenger (and driver's) seat. My wife and I are "vertically challenged." She often rests her foot on the floor where the extinguisher would be. So that location is eliminated for us.

I usually have stuff sitting on the side curtain box and have the tonneau cover snapped, so mounting it there could be difficult to reach quickly.

My TF had a little 1.5 pound dry chemical extinguisher and bracket under the dash bolted across the two supports for the TF (missing) under-dash-shield. Looked OK and was out of the way, but I kinda feel that a 1.5 pound extinguisher would just tickle a fire and make it mad.

Halotron and refilled Halon are still available in Florida. That's the way to go.

LM Cook

What Bud said.
Jack Long

Halon is the best, but illegal for mere mortals in U.S. unless you have one already.

There are 3 different chemicals in the "dry chemical" type.

#1. The most common and inexpensive is monoammonium phosphate found in the typical 1A-10B:C This type is rough on aluminum if not cleaned up soon, and would never be allowed anywhere near sensitive, or expensive, electronics. The FAA does not like this one anywhere near aircraft. The 1A part allows it to be categorized as good for wood, paper, etc. because it sort of creates a "crust" layer over what is being extinguished, excluding oxygen.

#2. Also common, but can be a little harder to find is sodium bicarbonate, typically found in 10B:C which is not rated for wood, paper, etc. as it does not build up that "crust" like the corrosive monoammonium phosphate. It will not damage wiring like #1. It will smother burning fuel, oil, solvent, etc. As it does not build up that "crust," if something is not put out by being smothered, it could re-ignite more easily, which would require another squirt of 10B:C Should only cost up to about 50% more than #1 in the same size.

#3. Expensive, and generally not available at WalMart or Home Depot is Potassium-Bicarbonate, another B:C not specifically rated for wood, paper, etc. I have heard it is about 2X as effective by weight. Similar to #2 in its non-corrosiveness, etc. Purple K is a brand.

Halotron is an alternative to dry chemical. It is supposedly the best next to Halon. Very few bad points except expense. The expense of this type of fire extinguisher generally keeps it in the vicinity of very expensive and elaborate electronics. It requires little or no clean up, and application will not damage a hot engine, like similarly expensive carbon dioxide which can cause cold-shock.
N Tesla

I have a Halon in our car. A good friend had a very minor fire in his TD, and the dry chem put it out but the residue made an EXTREEM disaster in the engine compartment.
Ours is mounted on a piece of finished pine on the floor just in front of the drivers seat. The wood mount has a another piece of 2" wide wood perpendicular to it and extends about 12" under the seat. This piece is shaved to fit under the seat. It has a brad at the end furthest under the seat to hold it into the carpet.
Very secure, and very easy to get to in an emergency.

Steve Wincze

I just read and didn't know, that Halon has been banned in many country's around the world due to it's Ozone deleting qualities. Hand helds might not be around much longer and soon impossible to refill. Makes you think doesn't it. Like Freon 12, try and buy it. PJ

I did a little research. There are some really expensive automatic systems designed for racing. Some running in X,XXX.

I found this though from a company call Fireblitz in the UK.

Space volume suitable for:
1kg - 1.7 cubic metres
1.5kg - 2.5 cubic metres
2kg - 3.4 cubic metres

It uses FE-36, or Hydrofluorocarbon-236fa (HFC-236fa) from Dupont as a replacement for Haylon.

Price is from 90 - 150 roughly depending on size.

I reckon in our cars the mid size one would be plenty ?

What do you guys think ?

D Moore

Mine sits vertically on the shelf behind the passenger seat and is secured by Velcro strips attached under the seat back adjusting fixture. Even with the tonneau in place (99% of my driving), I can snatch it pretty quickly and the Velcro yields to a good tug. Jud
J. K. Chapin

Mine is now attached to the rollbar.
Geoffrey M Baker

I contacted FireBlitz for some advice.

The 1kg size is more than adequate (and frankly the only one that will probably fit)

I was concerned about the extinguisher going off as the car is moving and the gas being pulled out of the bay. They said that the temperature inside the bay has to reach 79 degrees C before it goes off - this wont happen until the car stops anyway.

The also recommended putting it on the fuel side of he engine bay. Electrical fires won't create enough heat to raise the underhood temperature to 79C until it is way too late unless the sensor bulb happens to be very close.

Fancy integrated systems allow for this by having a long 'hose' wrapped around the bay which effectively releases the gas right where needed when it melts.

So.. I am ordering a 1 KG version for my car. Not perfect compared to the really expensive race versions -but pretty good.


D Moore

Dry chrome one attached to scuttle hoop w/zip tie (mount) on passenger side. The carbs & fuel lines are on that side! IMHO: Just about anywhere is in "reach" in a "T" car!

David Sheward 55 TF1500 # 7427

Here is my FireBlitz installed. Harder than you would think to get it to fit anywhere. In the end this is about the only option.

Plus side is the auto release mechanism is close to where any fire will start.

Down side is they are supposed to be mounted vertically ( or up 30 degrees off vertical ).

Means only half the gas will be released.

Should be enough as it will cope with a space 1.7m2.

Anyway since it was the only option I won't cry over it.

I bolted the mounting to the wooden panel underneath my battery.


D Moore

This thread was discussed between 05/12/2015 and 16/01/2016

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