So she’s been part of the Bridge Classic Cars family for 5 weeks but today’s the day our 1966 MG Midget restoration is finally complete and we’re ready to to send her home.
It’s been fun, a lot of highs and very little lows which we love.
We hope to be seeing this little beauty again for many years to come. It’s the Festival of Classic and Sports Cars at Helmingham Hall, maybe we’ll see her there.
As our final full day comes to a close on our 1966 MG Midget, it’s a been a busy week but a very rewarding week.
And even after all these years in the business, we occasionally slip up too but luckily our slip up was only minor and we were able to resolve it in super quick time…the wheel spinners!
To finish off the freshly refurbished wheels we thought it would look stunning if we fitted brand new MG wheel spinners.
We’ve had them on the shelf since day one, when we first ordered all of the parts we thought we would need. It’s good to be prepared.
As they were one of the last components to fit we left them in their boxes to avoid them getting any damage.
Turns out, there are two types of MG wheel spinners available: 8TPI and 12TPI. Today we discovered that the earlier models of the MG Midget have 8TPI, guess what we had purchased all those weeks ago, and didn’t think to check…yep 12TPI. Wrong!
So a quick call to the guys at Moss Europe and overnight delivery of the 8TPI spinners and she’ll be done and ready to go home.
As you’ll see from the image gallery, the roof is finally complete and works a treat. The original plinth that we had refurbished has now been attached to the front grille and is looking amazing on the car. The chrome B-Post plates have arrived and the wheels are on…not secure…but on!
One thing I forgot to mention yesterday was the door cards. The interior of this beauty was actually in very good condition so very little work was required. Once the car had been painted and we fitted the existing door card we felt that next to the brightness of the red they just looked tired. We called around and managed to secure a set or brand new doors cards, exactly the same style as the existing ones and they even had the white piping so we snapped them up! A great decision we feel.
It takes longer than you think to fit a brand new roof to an existing frame system.
But you can’t beat the look of a brand new roof so the efforts are well worth it!
Here we are working on doing just that. We’ve had the existing frame-work refurbished so it now looks as good as new. The hinges and mechanism needed a bit of freeing up but once we had added a little grease and gently worked on all of the moving components the roof was ready to me measured out and fitted.
If you intend on fitting a roof yourself we strongly advise you get an extra pair of hands to help you. Two pairs of hands to stretch the roof and secure tightly into position is most definitely better than one pair trying to attempt it. It is important for the roof to remain tight at all times and a good eye to make sure it is straight and in position.
See..it pays to take risks!
After running out of options to replace the tired looking plinth we were forced to take a risk and see whether we could re-chrome the original part.
I am fairly confident when I say that there are no more original front plinths in existence and believe me, I have tried everywhere! And as yet, no one has been able to re-produce them either so having spoken to, what seems like, every single MG parts supplier in the world we had no choice but to see whether we could refurbish the existing plinth.
This is a very challenging exercise as the material used to produce these originally, not only dent and mark very easily but are very difficult to re-chrome.
Having repaired the imperfections we managed to re-chrome and polish the part up to a superb condition.
A special thank you as always to Tony and the guys at Wyatt Polishing in Thetford for their help.
I think you’ll agree, it looks amazing.
Now to fit the new MG badge to the front…
Work is now underway on re-assembling our 1966 MG Midget. It’s been a very good, productive day so far. Everything is looking so lovely as it’s nice and shiny.
When re-building a car or components of a car it’s always best to loosely fit the parts. This way, if you find you need to adjust parts later down the line you can do it easier and without causing any damage. There’s nothing worse than getting this far and then causing slight damage, it is so disheartening. Loosely fitting the parts will reduce the risk of damage.
Just a couple of minor alterations we still need to do; the rear bumper and rear number plate light is not fitting quite how we want them too so we need to concentrate a little bit more of our time to these areas.
Our 1966 MG Midget has returned to our Ipswich workshops late this afternoon from the paint shop and she’s looking absolutely lovely.
The wheels have now been removed and taken away for restoration and the new/old and re-chromed parts are all organised, ready to be fitted up.
Its the end of the day now, we’ve had a very busy day going here there and everywhere so a fresh start in the morning. First task: Asa and John to get stuck in with re-assembling this beauty.
We are now just waiting on the front plinth to come back from Wyatt Polishing. Craig has tried his hardest to source a new plinth but as a lot of you may be aware and according to our various MG contacts the plinths have not be produced for over 4 years so getting hold a new one is almost impossible. So off to Tony to see him work his magic and getting the plinth looking brand new again!
We’ve just got back from the workshops in Needham Market where we had our first inspection of the new re-spray on the MG Midget.
We are due to see it back in the Bridge Classic Cars workshops tomorrow afternoon ready for re-assembly.
A few slight imperfections were found this afternoon on our visit so these will now get our full attention to keep us on track with our timings.
As you can see we have managed to rescue the original bonnet which is fantastic news as it keeps the car original. If replacement parts are required then this can be arranged but it’s always great to see original parts restored if at all possible.
Once the car is back with us at the Bridge Classic Cars workshops we’ll prepare her on the ramp ready for re-assembly. At this stage the wheels will be removed and refurbished ready for final installation.
This is where a car really starts to take shape.
With the final touches complete our 1966 MG Midget is now ready for paint.
All of the parts, including the new and re-chromed components are all ready and waiting for the re-assembly.
We are now well underway with the paint preparation. The bodywork needs to be stripped bare of all existing paintwork, any imperfections can then be worked on and straighten to ensure a perfect paint-job.
It is crucial to get the preparation absolutely right, this prevents any further work further along the journey.
It doesn’t take long to strip a car of it’s components.
If you are new to restorations do ensure you document where certain parts you have removed originally came from. It seems like a simple thing to remember but when you have a million and one things going through your mind, you might find, when it comes to rebuilding the car you have no idea where the piece you have in your hand actually goes…we’ve all been there.
Here is our 1966 MG Midget stripped of its external parts including all lighting and brightwork.
The next stage is to prepare the bodywork ready for paint.
Today we welcomed the a 1966 MG Midget, in with us for a few weeks undergoing a restoration ready for the great line up summer shows here in Suffolk.
She’s come in to us from Stowmarket and our plan is to strip her of all internal and external components.
The bodywork will then be prepared ready for a brand new full spray. The chrome work will then be assessed and a decision will be made as to whether to re-chrome or renew the various parts.
We expect the work to be completed within a 5-6 week time frame.
Here she is arriving at Bridge Classic Cars today.