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MG MG Y Type - Engine installation

I have the engine ready to go back in (again...long story) it easier to put it in leaving the gearbox in place or remove the gearbox and attach it to the engine and put them in together...when i have done it in the past I have just put the engine in...however it's difficult getting the gearbox splines into the engine and it can be difficult job...any comments?

Not sure - but I have usually put the engine in first, the rear end suspended from above on a hoist and brought the G/B up to the flywheel, if the G/B is in top gear the drive shaft can be rotated to engage the clutch splines, don't forget to to put copper grease in the flywheel bush
B Mellem

I would support the tail of the engine and remove the gearbox just before pulling the engine probably and refit being the reverse. But then I do not do this half as often as others!

Paul Barrow

Having just done this - twice! (don't ask) I just put the two in together as engaging the splines is easier off the car. is awkward. There is only just enough clearance to get the tail of the gearbox over the mountings if you remove the rubber blocks and only refit them when the front of the engine is behind the cross member. Even then you have to strain the bell housing a bit up against the bulkhead, assuming it is still fitted. And thereby hangs a tale as to get the front of the sump over and past the cross member you need to be continuously adjusting the angle of the whole shebang as you move it backwards - or rather it is easier to push the car forwards. To achieve this you need a good engine crane which can lift the lot high enough to get over the cross member in the first instance and you need some means of easily tilting the lot so that the gearbox is well below the engine as it is fed into the waiting space. The problem with the bulkhead occurs when trying to get the tailshaft over the gerbox mounting while the front end has still not fully cleared the cross member (it can be done but there is not much room!). Removing both front floor pieces and then the gearbox rear mounting completely would make this easy but it can be done without albeit at the cost of a few unobtrusive scratches to the bulkhead and cross member! Have you just painted it all? I had. The other scratch poss/probability is on the front of the battery box, on a YB with a centre box anyway. To avoid this as much as possible keep you crane jib as low as you can by keeping your chains, or whatever suspension medium you use, short and as far forward on the engine as possible to give as much clearance as possible at the back of the head. Of course the need to balance it all makes this difficult. Certainly the rear suspension point should be forward of the bell housing. Suspending the lot from the rocker cover studs would solve this problem but they don't look strong enough to me especially as I like to have a suspension strap which goes right underneath the engine for confidence. I think for future use I would make up a couple of suspension points held under the rear head nuts. I expect, however, that by the time I do it again (tempting fate there) I will have forgotten this! A couple of pieces of old carpet fastened to the front of the battery box and draped over the cross member are useful but don't make them too thick - there really is that little clearance! With the right tools and a sunny day this can be done alone but take your time. On second thoughts maybe I'll leave the gearbox in and fight with the splines!

Good Luck.
Ian Thomson
ian thomson

I have found it is easier to install the gearbox first, then the engine. To help the alignment of the gearbox input shaft splines, you can fit four "guide pins" to the engine (from 3" long metric bolts with the heads cut off).

You also need to remove the radiator and the front engine mounts completely. Be very careful not to damage the steering slip ring when moving the engine into place.

Tilt the front of the gearbox up as much as you can without fouling the firewall (retain with a soft strap around the battery box) & fit the engine a little "downhill". The pins will help align the spigot bush & splines. Pull the car towards the engine in top gear - this will rotate the spline as it contacts the clutch plate & will pop in easily. Once engaged, put the gearbox in neutral and push the engine up to the bellhousing. Fit a couple of the bellhousing bolts finger tight, then remove the guide pins.

I have always lifted my XPAG engines by the rocker studs - they are more than strong enough in tension. I also use a "tilting device" to change the lifting balance as required. It is a home made device using 3/4" threaded bar - shown in the attached photo. You can now buy similar devices ready made, but they were not available when I made this one in 1987.

Good Luck

The Classic Workshop


I try to keep the engine as light as possible so the head and starter is removed but not the oil pump - this on my engine is impossible to fit within the chassis
B Mellem

I removed and replaced a TD gearbox last week and I will do another one this week-after installing the clutch and pressure with a centering tool (I use an old first motion shaft) set one spline groove at 12 O'Clock, put the gearbox in gear so you can turn the tail shaft and first motion shaft. I had the engine jacked up and I built a platform under the gearbox, when I positioned the gearbox on the platform and pushed, it slid into place on the first attempt!
S.R. Barrow

This thread was discussed between 10/10/2019 and 27/11/2019

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