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MG TD TF 1500 - For P Hehir, New South Wales

Yes - they are 1/1/4" carbs - you spotted that right. The kink in the rad stay was when I had 1 1/2" carbs - back in the beginning. I have since detuned the car to make it last longer :)

If you have the dreaded vapor lock I would definitely recommend these spacers - you could also try to mount the carb feed this way round - to get the supply further away from the manifold.
Although I believe it is the fuel in the tube between the float chamber and the carb body that causes the actual block when it happens.

Anything that will help stop heat conducting to the carbs is a good idea and the bolts should be long enough to handle the spacer and a couple of caskets.

I can't say that up here in New England or when I was in England or Germany that I experienced vapor lock. But then I have always had the spacers in place on both of the TD's I have owned. There is also a heat shield that can help and the original had what looks like webbing behind the float bowls.

I have pictures of the heat shield - should you want to try one?

I also use JB Weld to close the tickler option on both the carb float chambers - as they will vent fuel onto the manifold even if the overflow pipe work.


R D Jones

Thanks Rod. When I last ran the car 43 years ago it had 1 1/2"'s fitted also. On hot days it wouldn't start after a run. I have a couple of sets of drawings to construct a heat shield but I will only go to that extent if I find it absolutely necessary. I'm in the process of reassembling the car at present so I will keep the tickler pins & ensure they are well maintained. I'm also attempting to have the car present in as original condition as possible hence the question about the handed float bowl lids on the other thread. It seems the TC, YT & TF's were definitely handed but the gurus seem to think that was not the case on the TD, which I think is strange. I can understand how things evolve on our cars but this would surely be the first instance of a change being made & then reverting back to an earlier approach. The handed lids enable the braided fuel line to fit/sit much better under the oil bath air filter. I would welcome any comment. What is the build date of your car? I have attached a pic of my old girl built on 1st Feb 1951. Cheers.
Peter TD 5801

P Hehir

You doing a great job there Peter looks really sweet

My TD was first registered July 17th 1953.

The first TD I owned came form Northern Ireland and was also a 53 car.
This was the heat shield that came with it and it worked really well.
Not too difficult to fabricate and it is bent in the right places to clear everything. The V in the bottom is to clear the throttle. As you can see it has suffered from some vibration and split in a couple of places but the webbing riveted to the back really redirects lot of heat away.


R D Jones

Back View.

R D Jones


Regarding the handed carb bowl tops. Both my TD have had these. (albeit Late TD's) If you swap the tops you can have the feed braded tube running in front or behind the dashpots. both ways work but the bowls have to be vertical for the float to work correctly as Gordon explained. Moving the feed line away from the manifold a few inches may help you, but convention seems to be that the feed line goes behind the dashpots.

Regarding the tickler - SU realized this was a mistake. Once there was an overflow pipe fitted it made no sense. They stopped fitting it all together once it was shown that petrol will gush out of the hole and allow fuel to dump onto the manifold.

It really won't matter if your TD is a perfect concourse example. Once it is consumed by fire no one will notice. It has happened - so this is not a pipe dream. That kind of Safety I feel should outweigh the lust for originality. Just my humble opinion.

Dave Boise lists a very simple and unobtrusive mod to the fork assembly inside the float chamber that will prevent the fork dropping down too low and allow the needle valve to stick open and flood the chamber. Well worth the effort & good insurance.

I use Gross Jett's which have a far larger seat area than the nitrite tipped needle valve and have never had one stick shut or open. But I still employed Dave's Mod.

Dave also shows a simple version of a heat shield modified from the Mini which you may also be of interest in. It will help with the Vapor Lock should you get it. It would be a lot easier to fabricate than mine.

Mine was made from thin sheet steel and looked rusty. Painted black it may have looked better. The back I think would need to be silver to help reflect heat. However I never experienced the dreaded Vapor Lock.

Back in 1970 when first put together, this is how I set it was up. Just a little tuned :) Since then I have put it back to STD -ish to try and make it last longer. Still a good driving car - just need the constant maintenance to save her butt.
After the first two months of tooling around the local neighborhood near London. I drove it down to Spain near Barcelona with the girlfriend, in the company of another MG midget. Never missed a beat. Great cars these TD's.


R D Jones

Thanks Rod. I was very interested in the float lever drop off adjustment & will modify my levers accordingly. Both Schach & Green include designs for heat shields but the modified mini shield you mentioned appears the less noticeable of the 3. If I find I suffer from vapour lock I will certainly use it. I appreciate the info.

In relation to the handed lids I should also have mentioned that the TD MK 2, along with the TC, YT & TF, also sported left & right hand lids. I have seen quite a few TD's here in Oz with right hand front & left hand rear lids but the sceptics point out that as only right hand lids are shown in the parts book & in the illustrations in the driver's handbook, left hand lids are therefore wrong on the standard TD. As mentioned above because of the better fit of the braided fuel line below the oil bath air filter, I've used handed lids on mine & will continue to do so.

Only drove my TD for 18 months in 1969/70 & had an absolute ball! She's been in storage ever since. I thought I could drive before I got the MG but quickly discovered I had a lot to learn when the rear first parted company with the road! The old girl certainly taught me a thing or two. It wasn't long however before I encouraged her to do that at every opportunity. I can't wait to get back behind the wheel & learn to "drive" all over again!
Peter TD 5801
P Hehir

This thread was discussed between 27/02/2014 and 28/02/2014

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