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MG TD TF 1500 - sputter and die!

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Andre de la Chevrotiere

Andre - First thing to check is if the fuel pump is delivering fuel - quick check, remove the lid of the float bowl - is there fuel in the bowl? If so then the fuel pump is probably ok. The other two possibilities are the ignition coil or the capacitor (condenser). The only real way to check either of these is by replacement. Cheers - Dave
D.W. DuBois

Might also want to check the dashpots for oil. If there is no oil in them the mixture is too lean for acceleration and it will sputtered and die on acceleration.

Alex Waugh

Andre, I just went through this. Might not be the same cause.... search for 2 recent threads with "sputter" in the title.

Also, I'm convinced the el-cheapo, "this might work" exhaust system from the previous owner was causing a problem as it was choked down quite a bit because of really sloppy welding in a 2 pipe system. Not even close to factory spec.


WAS THE FUEL PUMP TICKING ???? Do you have tickler pins on the fuel bowls?
SPW Wincze

I have not checked the carb bowls yet. Dashpots have oil. I do have a new Moss SS exhaust system on the car. Also, the fuel pump is an aftermarket solid state unit sold by Moss called "Facet electric fuel pump". I did read today that the pump is susceptible to vapor lock at temps over 140f. I will search "sputter" on this site to see other options. Thanks
Andre de la Chevrotiere

I would suggest you get out your multi-meter and check the coil. Your symptoms sound the same as my experience with a dying coil. If you are running well for about 20 minutes or so, it is not likely that it is your fuel pump. Not sure of the Facet has that same reliable "tick" as the beloved SU.
Charles Duffy

One of the first things I changed was the coil, because it was getting almost too hot to touch. I replaced it with a new one, I drove the car 30 miles without a problem, then the next trip out....7 or 8 miles and the symptom appeared again.

I wish I could tell you exactly what I did to correct the "sputter to a stop, wait 5 minutes to drive again". Quite honestly I am not 100% sure it's been corrected.


I really doubt if it is a "Vapor Lock" problem,,
Do you know how old the Facet is?? I guess they di=o wear out and don't pump. Is there any filter in the line? I found this link,, As usual, Dave D has some excelent suggestions,,,1788533

SPW Wincze


As soon as this happens, disconnect the fuel line at the carb and turn on the ign. If gas spurts it's not the pump. I tried a second pump in my car with no improvement.

Are you running on ethanol gas? Can you touch the bottom of the fuel bowl just after sputtering?


Need to do systematic check. Pull top of float bowl first to see if full or dry. Rig up spark tester- just an old plug with the gap opened up a bit, pull and put in plug wire, crank over to check for spark. Then go from there. George
George Butz

I had the same problem. Mine was caused by a loose/bent distributor shaft. Had a small radial "wiggle". There is only a 12 thousands gap at the points. Any looseness in the shaft will cause intermittent sparking.
Peter Dahlquist

This thread was discussed between 31/05/2015 and 02/06/2015

MG TD TF 1500 index

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