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MG MGB Technical - rubber

There are long standing rants on every classic car site with relation to the abysmal quality of rubber products. Rebound straps with little or no reinforcement, gators and boots which decompose themselves in 12 months, wipers which are so rigid they don't wipe, glass seals which split and are dimensionally compromised, etc., etc..
Whilst going down this well trodden road with Jody Walker of BCC Parts at Silverstone, he mentioned that this was an issue he was keen to address, but needed some support, in the form of e mails and letters, to convince his "powers that be".
He has approached several UK based companies, all of whom are quite enthusiastic, but are quick to point out that it is unlikely that they can compete on price grounds, with sweat shop goods made from re-cycled tyres and flip flops, but quality and longevity will be up with, and in some cases, better than OE!
I for one would be happy to pay the price for a product which fits, works and LASTS!!
If you would like to support his "crusade" please drop him a mail. on;
Allan Reeling

Alan, check out McGregor, in Canada. He carries the best available rubber products available today and they actually fit! RAY
rjm RAY

Interesting Ray, some of their products are actually made in the UK!!
Allan Reeling

I bought some new stainless (quality) wiper blades from a well known supplier earlier this year.
They lasted exactly 6 weeks before the rubber disintegrated.
I would be willing to pay a fair amount of extra monies if I could be sure I could get quality parts, some of the replacements available nowadays are awful.

I always have to resort to buying replacement rubber blades from the local motor factors and adapting then to fit. Incidentally I find the Trico type of backing far superior to the Tex, especially on the GT screen. Please drop a mail to bcc.
Allan Reeling

Allen, what do you mean by 'Trico type backing'? Is that the springing element of the blade? The Tex ones I have at the moment have thin stainless strips either side, but I also had plastic in the past. These seem to work OK on the GT.
Dave Smith GT

Ray, Martin Macgregor does have good products, but in a conversation with him, there are parts even he will not stock because there are just none available that are not junk. Wing vent rubber is the one I called him on having replaced 3 set in 5 years.

He explained that there are just not any good ones out there so he does not even stock them. Having a company take on the really bad ones like this one would be great.
Bruce TD4139 Cunha

Dave, It's the design of the stainless steel framing/backing/support for the rubber element. Tex have a longish centre with two small, "hinged" arms. Trico style use multi sprung elements which, to me, exert better, consistent pressure, Especially on a GT screen.
Allan Reeling

I have emailed Jody at BCC. However nobody can make money -ie afford to stock- if we only need say 4 grease retaining seals for the lower fulchrum. It might be an idea to list the bits we need and offer to buy a "pack" containing them. We then hold the stock (and use as needed) rather than BCC.

Grease retaining seals. Steering rack gaiters.handbrake lever boots. Wiper blades. ?coolant hoses........
Michael Beswick

Fuel filler grommet - the one you see on the outside of the rear panel round the filler cap. Mine is completely disintegrating at 6 years old. As for coolant hoses, I have used silicone hoses that seem very durable, so maybe not required?
Mike Howlett

Club rubber coolant hoses 20-25. Silicone 125......??!!
Michael Beswick

"Club rubber coolant hoses 20-25" Hmm, I wonder how long they will last? You get what you pay for, generally. Clive Wheatley offers two hose kits for the MGB GTV8 (all 6 main hoses), reinforced rubber for 68.45, and a silicone set for 120.45. I know Clive won't sell garbage (unlike plenty of other traders) and I expect his rubber set will be the best quality you can get, but I still think the silicone set would be my preference.
Mike Howlett

Silicon has other advantages associated with longevity; it's more abrasion resistant and more flexible. It's also easier to cut too, but you do need to buy better, rolled edge, hose clips .
We will have to see exactly what BCC come up with in terms of commissioning, stocking etc.. and where they are prepared to go as regards specific items.
Good quality hoses are available, as mentioned above, but there is a distinct lack of quality, dimensionally accurate, roadster screen seals and pads, boots, gaiters, fuel filler grommets, wipers, GT hatch and windscreen seals and quarter light to door seals, plus the fulcrum seals as mentioned.
Allan Reeling

I'm glad I replaced my roadster wipers 27 years ago and not more recently! However V8 replaced in 2000 (when it was a daily driver) and 2013. ZS replaced in 2007 and earlier this year, all from Halfords. I have Smartscreen in both the MGBs and swear by it, only rarely need them to be on continuous. I've debated putting on on the ZS as well as the single-speed intermittent is rarely at the right periodicity for light rain.

Alan, Any further news from BCC? I had no acknowledgement /reply to my emails.
Michael Beswick

Only a mail a couple of days after my first post to say Jody had had "several mails already".
I'll drop him line again for an update.
Allan Reeling

Michael 9and others),
Mailed Jody at BCC yesterday, reply as follows;

Hi Allan,

We have had a good response from the public, thank you, and my colleague Jon, who you also met at the MG show, is in the process of meeting with potential suppliers so I will keep you posted.

Kind regards, Jody
Allan Reeling

Did this go anywhere?
Michael Beswick

Hi Guys,

Only just caught this post, but would be very happy to pay more for better quality products. I have spent hours replacing items which have lasted a few months instead of a few years, lower fulcrum grease retainers grew to twice their size in 3 months, this really p**sed me off, so I put the 20 year old ones back on and they have been fine. I now do my very best not to buy anything new if I can re-furbish what I have because it doesn't only apply to "rubber products" it applies to everything in the classic car market.

G Cherry

Michael, not had any communication with BCC since the above post in July. I'll drop them a line to see if there has been any progress.
Allan Reeling

This thread was discussed between 06/06/2016 and 02/11/2016

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