MG Midget - 'Project Rustbucket'!

  1. Afternoon all!

    Had a free Sunday (the missus is off saving lives) and nothing to do on my race car (waiting for parts to pitch up), so I thought I'd do a bit of MG stuff and post some pics for you all to laugh at :)

    My local friendly Machine Mart had a VAT-free day recently, so I treated myself to a Clarke 135TE gas MIG jobby. I've also gone and bought an auto-darkening helmet (from Weldequip, excellent service, thanks very much!) because my one-handed welding sucks and I don't want to go blind!


    With the welding kit acquired, I set about wandering round the car with a notebook and a brew, noting down what I definitely need to do - which is, floorpans/inner sills/outer sills/rear arches/door pillars both sides at the very least! The car came with quite a few panels, but most of these were O/S. The previous owner had started on the N/S already, so I wanted to continue his work. I ordered the sills and floorpan from the MG Owners Club, and they pitched up t'other day so I thought "best crack on". :welder:

    Today I measured the door gaps and was pleasantly surprised to find they are even both sides! I then took a lesson from the Bodgit school of engineering, found a shelf bracket lying around and tacked it across the N/S door to keep the gaps correct:


    Then, it was grinder time... A cutting disc made light work of the rotten outer sill, revealing:



    Surprise, surprise - a rotten inner sill. I then had a quick nosey inside the car and noticed that the rear spring hanger is knackered and breaking away from the floorpan:


    So question time...

    Should I remove the inner sill next and tack the replacement in where I can before fitting the outer sill and floorpan?

    Or should I remove the floorpan next, then replace the floor before the inner sill? This would probably be easier, but as the car has the structural integrity of a wet teabag is it just going to collapse like a clowns car?! :confused:

    Thoughts welcomed gents! Updates as and when wedding planning/racing/work allows ;)
  2. malcolm

    malcolm Hej!

    Bedford UK
    Good grief - those things get rusty. Having tackled something similar in the past I'd start with a new shell.

    Failing brace the door gap top and bottom and do the inner sill first. Positioning of that is quite important to door fit, so best to set the floorpan position from that rather than the other way around. There will probably be a fair number of repairs to make bits for the inner sill to fasten to.
  3. jrmig Member

    Gatwick, UK
    I've got one that looks like that :ashamed:

    Just a bit of surface rust really!!:laughing:

    Seriously - do the inner and outer sill first to get some strength in there - brace across the door as malcolm says and its also a good idea to put a jack under the floor with a good stout bit o timber just to hold it all together. The cross member will provide something to jack up to. Before you put the outer sill on make sure the door gap is correct and also check its alignment with the front wing. Something I forgot to do first time round and the gap was shocking :whistle:

    Last edited: Jun 22, 2008
  4. Paul.

    Paul. Moderator Staff Member

    Northampton. UK
    Hi, it looks like a bit of major surgery required there, the spring hanger will probably need to be repaired from both sides, this is going to be difficult with the spring in the way, why not finish stripping the car and make a frame to brace the door aperture at top and bottom, and side to side, put some legs on it and turn the whole thing upside down, I usually use the door as a starting point and build the body work round it, this way you can improve the fit of the door
    cut out piece by piece and do one side at a time then you have a reference. if your making your own repair panels make them in card first to get a good fit and make a note of any swages or creases they are there for a reason,
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