Tuesday 28 March 2017

Footwell End Panel Repair

Whilst waiting for the paint to dry on the A-Post I started to prepare the footwell end panel ready for welding. Just the same with all the other repairs I drill holes on the welding contact points, spray with weld-through primer and add a couple of coats of chassis paint on those areas that will be hidden forever.

There were a couple of signs of rust on the original metal chassis so I wired brushed that all back to clean bare metal and applied a coat of rust converter. Once dry I will prepare for welding in the normal way.

A-Post Repair Continued

The next step is to prepare the outer A-Post repair panel ready for welding into position. This involves drilling more holes and spraying a coat of weld-through primer on the contact points, but applying chassis paint to those parts that will be covered up for evermore.

One of the issues that I had with this panel was when I test fitted it for the first time the door gap increased near the top as you can see below:


There was something not quite right and I took me a good while to work out the the panel had not been bent in the correct place. The photo below shows the panel after I had flattened out the flap and re-bent the flap in the correct place with the red line showing the old crease. The door gap is now correct. Panic over!

Tuesday 21 March 2017

A-Post Repair

I am sure that I remember saying some years ago that one of the most important parts of restoring an MG Midget was to make sure that the doors fitted. Everything has now come down to this point. Did the chassis bend and twist when I removed all of that rusted metal? Or by some chance of luck did it all go according to plan. Welding in the door hinge repair would answer that question.

I cannot remember how many times I fitted the door whilst attached to the hinge repair, but it must have been a lot. I took my starting point from the top part of the repair against the original A-post as you can hopefully see from the second photo. I then made sure the repair was vertical and tacked a couple of small welds to hold it in place, then test fitted the door again to make sure all was lining up as it should and finished welding it in.

This left a small custom repair job that took no time at all to sort out. I do love making these.

I had to fix another rust patch around the windscreen support hole which also turned out very nice.

This now only leaves the outer skin of the A-post to fit and if the test fitting is anything to go by we are looking ok to crack on with it. 

There is some adapting to do to get the line correct on the top left of the repair to ensure the gap is consistent, but I am confident it will work out.

So looking forward to finishing this front side.

Sunday 5 February 2017

Right Hand Outer Sill in!

At long last the outer sill in all welded in and looking good!

I then needed to complete a repair to the point where the wheel arch meets the sill, as there was some rust in that area I had to cut it out, make a new section and weld it all in.

The issue I need to resolve is to close up all the gaps as I can see no reason to keep this as it is. The only reason I left a gap was because there is one on the left hand side and from photo's I have seen online there is also a gap. Why leave a gap where water from the wheel arch can come through the gap down to the A post? More research required!

Monday 30 January 2017

Outer Sill Welding into Position - Part 1

After many hours of alignment preparation I decided to bite the bullet and weld the outer sill into position. I chose the lower contact points first just in case there was any metal warping that I might to able to correct in the top of the sill.

First off I needed to clean up each weld using my mini wire brush attachment.

After that I clamped around each hole and used a pick to ensure that no primer and only bare metal was exposed to ensure a clean weld. I made sure that every weld was completed at a different points on the sill to reduce overheating and warping.

Quit impressed with some of these welds. Funny how some go so well and others end up with too much metal in them.

Next job is to check the door alignment and complete the welds in the top of the sill. I will need to make sure there are no gaps around the sill which might let moisture in. Then grind it all down smooth and paint it to protect the section until it is time for the soda blasting!

Saturday 28 January 2017

Outer Sill Alignment

In order to make sure I get this outer sill aligned to the best of my ability I consulted with my friends at the MG Cars Enthusiasts' Club. They, as always gave me some valuable advice which was to properly line up everything first and make sure that the door looked good. 

But there was one job that I have been putting off for some time, not for any particular reason other than I was just nervous about cutting more metal away from the A post pillar.

The problem I have with this repair is the repair panel itself. I have noticed that the new panel is slightly smaller to the lower left of the hole where the windscreen support slots into. I guess that is something I will have to tackle at some point.

For now I needed to cut some metal away so that the A-post panel will fit in place so I can test fit the door, the wing and the A-post to make sure the outer sill is in position and ready for welding.

Oh look more rust! Hardly surprising as this spot it a usual suspect in terms of rusting points. I'll be back to sort you out later, but for now it was time to check the alignment.

I think that it all looks fairly good for a test fitting. I am happy with the gaps as they all seems to be constantly equal and straight. Hopefully I can start to tack some welds in tomorrow.

Wednesday 25 January 2017

Outer Sill Preparation

For the last couple of evenings I have been preparing the outer sill for one of my most nervous welds to date. If I get this wrong it could ruin the entire look of the car.
Gaps, wheel arches and bolt holes all have to be carefully considered to ensure I don't mess this up.

First job is to prepare the inner sill that is going to be covered for evermore (hopefully! Not doing all this again in a hurry) by painting it in a couple of coats of black chassis paint to protect it from the rust.

Then I drilled all the weld holes in the outer sill, took it back to bare metal and sprayed the edges with weld-through primer to protect the join from rust. I applied a couple of coats of chassis paint to the inner section, as shown below.

Next I presented the outer sill to the inner sill and sprayed a little primer through the holes to highlight the welding line.

This was then stripped back to bare metal and sprayed with weld-through primer.

 Finally the outer sill in (hopefully) in position ready for welding.

The gaps and arches all look good, including the two ends of the outer sill which I was relieved to see ends perfectly in-line with footwell end and the rear bulk head. Must have done something right! In case you are wondering why the blue wing, the guy I bought the MG Midget off included it in the price as the old one was too far gone.

Next post will be welding in the sill and then on to the A and B post repairs and fitting the door.

Tuesday 17 January 2017

Where does the time go

It has been a long while since my last post, but I have been somewhat busy working on the house that we bought nearly two years ago. Every room and the garden needed to be redone. During the summer I spent nearly all my time working in the garden trying to transform it from a jungle to something we can enjoy as a family. During the winter months to date I have been sorting out the bathrooms. I'm happy to say that I decided that enough was enough and it was time to get back to the MG! 

There was a couple of things that encouraged me to get back it, the first was watching quite a few episodes of CarSOS, kind of hoping that I would appear on the show, only to get frustrated that it wasn't me and telling myself I must get back into the garage. The other was some nice gifts friends and family gave me for Christmas.

My last post explained about getting ready weld in the floor. Well I am please to say that I completed that job back in the summer. I just don't think I took any photos. My next job is to align the outer sill and prepare the area for its fitting.

I am so happy that the sill and the wing appears to line up really well. The b-post repair also looks like it should fit into place with near perfect gaps all round.