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 Post subject: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: October 14, 2013, 11:32 pm 
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Joined: July 4, 2006, 5:40 pm
Posts: 1993
Location: Novato, CA
Pretty sure I never imagined starting a thread in this section of the forum, but here we are, thanks to all of you who cajoled, encouraged, admonished, inspired, and berated me into finishing the car.

Attachment:
MGL1.jpg


Although we have to wait a bit for licensing, the MGB Locost is done, and of course that's by my definition of done. Here's how the car turned out:

Specifications:
Wheelbase: 91"
Front track: 52"
Rear track: 51-3/4"
Ride height: 5-1/2"
Weight: 1565 lbs.
Balance: 48%/52% f/r with 190 lb. driver

Chassis:
Book build using McSorley book plans, 1" square 16 gauge A36 tubing, 1" x 1/2" tubing for the transmission tunnel
Welded with a Millermatic 140 (110v) MIG welder
3/4" round tubing bent with a conduit bender
Aussie mods include nose diagonal using 3/4" 16 gauge DOM, 1"x 1/2" 16 gauge tubes across driver and passenger floors
Roll bar from Kinetic, shortened to 16", bolted in, deleted harness bar, added upper seat belt anchors
Sheeting is 16 gauge floor and firewalls, 18 gauge trans tunnel, 16 gauge rear fender supports
Spray painted with 2K urethane and brush coated with Rustoleum Hunter Green gloss enamel

Suspension:
Front spindles from the donor MGB, A-arms pattered after book arms, adapted to the MGB swivel axle, professionally TIG welded
Triumph Metalastic bushes inboard, chassis pickup brackets canted 5 degrees for caster
Rear book suspension, Triumph Metalastic bushes inboard, 1/2" Heim joints at the axle
Shocks are GAZ adjustables 8-12 rear and 9-13 front, supplied by Kinetic through the U.S. importer (Brunton)
Springs are 325# front, 140# rear
Wheels are MG Rostyles from the donor, 14x5-1/2
Tires are Bridgestone 910s from the donor, 185/70-14

Steering:
Rack from the donor, unmodified, mounted considerably higher than the book so the tie rods are level at static ride height
Tie rods from the donor, lengthened 2"
Column is collapsible, from the donor, with a 9" supported extension and 2 MG universal joints between the column and rack

Brakes:
Front calipers from the donor, new rotors and pads
Rear drums from the donor
Handbrake from the donor, cable shortened 22"
Pipes are all new, pre-flared with new fittings from Moss Motors

Drive train:
Engine: MG B-series 1.8 liter OHV with bhp 94@5600 and torque 110@3000
Transmission: MG full-synchro 4-speed
Rear axle: MG Salisbury 3.9:1

Electrics:
Harness from the donor, most Lucas in-line female connectors replaced with new
Battery from NAPA, generic group 24
Starter from donor
Alternator from donor
Horns replaced with new MG horns, steering wheel ground switch, relay added
Lights are Britax rear, Speedway Dietz-style front, Lucas L488 parking and turn signals, new Lucas MGB reverse and tag lights

Cooling:
Radiator from the donor, water pump from the donor, hoses from Gates
Coolant filler added to the thermostat exit hose

Exhaust:
Manifold from the donor, Jones 18" x 1.75" Full Boar muffler, mix of aluminized 1.75" tubing from Summit
Heat shield fabricated from perforated stainless steel 18 gauge sheet

Fuel:
Tank is a Jaz circle-track 10 gallon supplied by Kinetic
Lines are Aeroquip to the pump, 5/16" aluminum fuel line from Summit through the tunnel
Pump is S.U. electric, mounted behind the passenger seat bulkhead
Carburetors are S.U. HIF4s from the donor

Body:
Nose from Kinetic
Scuttle fabricated per the book, all steel with 16 gauge firewall and 20 gauge cover
Hood is .050" 3003H14 aluminum, with clearance for the engine, carburetors, and coolant filler
Sides are .040" 3003H14 aluminum, rear is .032" 3003H14 aluminum
Fenders are Kinetic "Steamrollers" rear, narrowed to 8-3/4", aluminum front from Fenders 'n More, 9"x29"x24"
Windshield from Kinetic, laminated 1/4" glass cut locally
Wipers from an MG Midget, arms shortened 2" and adapted to 7" Anco blades from Summit
Body panels spray painted with 2K urethane and Rustoleum Hunter Green gloss enamel thinned 3:1 with acetone

Interior:
Seats fabricated from plywood backing, 3" foam, and poly-backed vinyl covering from Moss Motors
Seat belts are generic 3-point non-retractables from Summit
Dashboard is 0.10 6061-T6 aluminum, covered with oak veneer
Switches are standard MGB rockers, all new from Moss Motors, for lights, panel, fan, defrost, and hazard
Steering column switchgear from the donor for turn signals, headlight dimmer, flash-to-pass, and wipers
Gauges from the donor, additional Jensen-Healey voltmeter from eBay
Steering wheel from Mr. Gordon Lawson of Ontario, Canada
Paneling fabricated from fiberboard, 1/4" foam, and poly-backed vinyl covering from Moss Motors

Attachment:
parked8.jpg


Driving impressions:

I've only put 34 miles on the clock so far. My longest drive was a six-mile jaunt across town to get the car corner-weighted. Highest speed to date is 55 mph.

Based on this limited amount of driving, I have so far found the car to exceed my wildest expectations in terms of chassis stiffness, ride, and handling. There is no bump steer. The spring rates are near perfect and the shocks never bottom out. The ride is firm but comfortable. There is very little body roll. Nothing squeaks or rattles. The car is extremely well-balanced with no tendency to understeer or oversteer all the way to the limit, which is a lot of fun at the speeds I've been driving. We'll see if it's still fun at higher speeds.

I take no credit for any of this. Either the Locost is just that well-designed, or I got very lucky. I do have to take the blame for the excessive weight, but I wanted a stiff chassis and I got it. All of the interior panels are steel, fully seam welded. The floor is 16 gauge steel and only stitch welded, but still extremely rigid. I added an Aussie-type nose diagonal and additional cross tubes under the cockpit floor. Everything else is out of the book. I didn't cut any corners. Most of the brackets are exercises in engineering overkill. I don't plan on redoing any of them.

The MGB engine and high weight limit performance to about that of a Mazdaspeed Miata. I'm not complaining. There's plenty of torque and it's a lot faster than any of the MGBs I used to own. I'm not much of a power fiend in any case, but I have to admit I was hoping for a little more punch. I'll have no problem dealing with it. I'd much rather have a moderately powered car that's fun to toss around than a rocket on roller skates. The car should be a blast at autocross.

The driving position is a little strained with the 16" steering wheel. I had to figure out a way to relax my clutch foot without moving it very far from the clutch pedal, but I think I've got it. I also feel like I'm sitting about 1" too high, so I may take some stuffing out of the cushions at some point. OTOH, the higher position gives me more leverage on the controls, so we'll see. The gearshift is easy enough to reach, but quite a bit farther away than a good ergonomic car like a Miata. I'm almost used to it.

I love carburetors and distributors. The car starts instantly hot or cold and runs beautifully throughout its rev range, thanks to millions of miles of needle refinements by the Skinners' Union.

Issues:

Only 3 so far:

The front fender stays interfere with the bolts holding the upper A-arms together. This occurs about 1/8" before normal full lock, which isn't enough to motivate me to fix it.

The engine leaks a little oil. It leaked briefly in the donor, but I fixed it by replacing the oil filter adapter O-ring. The new leak appears to be coming from seepage through the cork valve cover gasket.

The right front tire has a problem staying inflated. There's nothing wrong with the tire. It leaks at the bead. It doesn't leak if I keep the pressure over 30 pounds, but that's way too high.

Would I build another one?

Only if the stars aligned like they did in 2011. It might be fun, but it's a huge amount of never-ending work, although it might be easier to tolerate the frustration since I already have one I can drive any time I want. The thing is, if I built another one I can't imagine doing anything differently, so I'd end up with two of the exact same car. Maybe the second one would be a different color. A darker shade of green, maybe.

Attachment:
frontview8.jpg


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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: October 15, 2013, 12:15 am 
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Joined: October 24, 2008, 2:13 pm
Posts: 4930
Location: Carlsbad, California, USA
Congratulations. I'd say Bon Voyage, Nick, but I think we'll still see you around the place even though you've "graduated."

Cheers,

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Damn! That front slip angle is way too large and the Ackerman is just a muddle.

Build Log: viewtopic.php?f=35&t=5886


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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: October 15, 2013, 9:29 am 
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Joined: July 17, 2008, 9:11 am
Posts: 6240
Location: West Chicago,IL
Way to go Nick. Looking fabulous! :cheers:

I think the part that makes the rostyle wheels work so well, is the lack of silver highlight on the 5 radial ribs. The dark charcoal on everything except the outer rim really makes a difference.

Happy motoring.

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Chuck.

“Any suspension will work if you don’t let it.” - Colin Chapman

Visit my ongoing MGB Rustoration log: over HERE

Or my Wankel powered Locost log : over HERE

And don't forget my Cushman Truckster resto Locostusa.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=17766


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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: October 15, 2013, 1:39 pm 
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Joined: August 12, 2012, 6:38 pm
Posts: 1935
Location: worcester county, Massachsetts
Heeey, look at you, all "Completed Build Showcase" and stuff. Well played, sir, well played ;-)

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The B-3 build log: http://www.locostusa.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=13941

The Jag Special Build Log: http://www.locostusa.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=19012


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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: October 15, 2013, 2:12 pm 
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Joined: October 6, 2009, 9:29 am
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Location: Tallahassee, FL (The Center of the Known Universe)
robbovius wrote:
Heeey, look at you, all "Completed Build Showcase" and stuff. Well played, sir, well played ;-)

Yep, like he said... The car is just gorgeous, Nick. Well done!
:cheers:

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Quinn the Slotus:Ford 302 Powered, Mallock-Inspired, Tube Frame, Hillclimb Special
"Gonzo and friends: Last night must have been quite a night. Camelot moments, mechanical marvels, Rustoleum launches, flying squirrels, fru-fru tea cuppers, V8 envy, Ensure catch cans -- and it wasn't even a full moon." -- SeattleTom


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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: November 10, 2013, 11:28 pm 
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Joined: July 4, 2006, 5:40 pm
Posts: 1993
Location: Novato, CA
Licensing step 1 of 4 completed. CHP verified proof of ownership, completed all the necessary paperwork, and tacked on a VIN plate.

Attachment:
uhaul8.jpg


Attachment:
chp8.jpg


Attachment:
officer8.jpg


Attachment:
paperwork8.jpg


Attachment:
drill8.jpg


Attachment:
vin8.jpg


Next step is getting a SPCNS certificate of sequence for the SB100 smog exemption.


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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: November 11, 2013, 9:23 am 
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Joined: July 17, 2008, 9:11 am
Posts: 6240
Location: West Chicago,IL
A very BIG day. Congrats!!!!!

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“Any suspension will work if you don’t let it.” - Colin Chapman

Visit my ongoing MGB Rustoration log: over HERE

Or my Wankel powered Locost log : over HERE

And don't forget my Cushman Truckster resto Locostusa.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=17766


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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: November 11, 2013, 2:10 pm 
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Thanks for posting the process photos. That guy doesn't look so scary!

If they are like many States, you can make an appointment for them to come to you, but it might be a couple months wait.


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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: November 11, 2013, 3:17 pm 
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Joined: December 24, 2007, 5:11 am
Posts: 1303
Location: Seattle area
The step most of us look forward to but fear. Thanks for showing us it doesn't really hurt.

A big congratulations Nick. Well done.

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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: November 11, 2013, 6:14 pm 
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Joined: April 11, 2006, 10:27 pm
Posts: 569
Location: Murfreesboro TN
Great job. I really like the MG wheels on there. Now to get it fully on the road and have a blast. Congratulations. :cheers:

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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: November 11, 2013, 6:33 pm 
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Congratulations, seeing as you made it British racing green I would add a little Union Jack plate on either side of the car. Image Congratulations and a very nice looking car!

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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: November 13, 2013, 3:27 pm 
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Posts: 1935
Location: worcester county, Massachsetts
Nick congrats on achieving legality!

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The B-3 build log: http://www.locostusa.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=13941

The Jag Special Build Log: http://www.locostusa.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=19012


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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: November 14, 2013, 3:07 am 
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Joined: October 19, 2009, 9:36 pm
Posts: 2183
Location: meadview arizona
well Nick, you've graduated from the university of locost, something that many have tried and almost as many have failed!

the car looks spiffing, a credit to you and all the locosters on the forum.

like me, you may not have got here without the support of this forum,and i hope, also like me, having built the car, you will not leave us but keep comming back to spur on builders old and new, you may not know this but you have learnt how to hand build a complete car all by yourself and on the way you have also aquired valuable skills that you are duty bound to pass on to the uninitiated and unskilled, this is the legacy that a true locoster has to bear i'm affraid.

good luck with the car.

regards John.

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from this day to the end of the world.
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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: November 14, 2013, 10:12 am 
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Location: Carlsbad, California, USA
john hennessy wrote:
well Nick, you've graduated from the university of locost, something that many have tried and almost as many have failed! . . .


I think you have something there, John. Maybe it needs to be a T-shirt for we "undergraduates" and a sweatshirt with a photo of your finished build in the center of a Locost University crest when it's completed along with "I graduated" at the bottom.

The T-shirt could maybe say "Locost University - Graduation Rate 3%" or something like that. :lol: Personally, I think this is my third year as a sophomore!

Cheers,

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Damn! That front slip angle is way too large and the Ackerman is just a muddle.

Build Log: viewtopic.php?f=35&t=5886


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 Post subject: Re: Nick's MGB Build
PostPosted: November 14, 2013, 10:52 am 
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Location: West Chicago,IL
I don't know if this is correct but it sure sounds good.

"Universitas Minimus Sumptu " (Locost University)

"Finitoque Currus" (Finished Charriot or car)

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Chuck.

“Any suspension will work if you don’t let it.” - Colin Chapman

Visit my ongoing MGB Rustoration log: over HERE

Or my Wankel powered Locost log : over HERE

And don't forget my Cushman Truckster resto Locostusa.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=17766


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