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MG TD TF 1500 - MRN vs FA ignition cylinder

The question came up on if an FA ignition cylinder is correct for a Nov 1, 1950 MGTD.

I asked Craig Seabrook about this. Here is his answer.

IMHO: TA, TB, early to mid TC used MRN
Later TC & early TD used a mix of MRN & FA
Mid to late TD used FA.

So by this, a FA could be correct for my TD.

I know Bill Chasser said both his and his dad's car have MRN, they are late 50 or early 51 I believe.

Is there any data out there on this production change?
Bruce Cunha

I don't disagree with this assessment Bruce, except to say that I'm not aware of any TC's here with an original FA. The FA was available from late 1949 so, although unlikely, it is just conceivable that one or two may have been fitted to a TC. It is also highly likely that a defective switch in a TC could or would have been replaced with an FA, thus adding to the notion that the FA was original to the TC. Obviously there were plenty of MRN's on the shelf in the early 50's waiting to be fitted as there is evidence of these still being installed in TD's well into 1951. It just comes down to the definition of early, mid and late. I'm not aware of a precise date even though previous attempts have been made to firm this up. In your quest for originality there would be few, if any judges out there who would be able to substantiate pinging you for presenting with an FA though. For the benefit of other restorers the switch with the window is a much later replacement and is definitely not original. Cheers
Peter TD 5801
P Hehir

I have a friend that has an original 1949 MG YT. I will see what cylinder is in it.

You are correct that the key cylinder is a part that could have easily been replaced over the years. Lost keys, etc.

I think you thoughts on that the FA could have been in the Nov 1 1950 TD are valid.
Bruce Cunha

Bruce I doubt whether an owner would have gone to the trouble of replacing a cylinder if he's lost the key, as replacement keys were readily available then as they are now. Changing the cylinder does require removing the switch from the dash and dismantling the unit. These replacement keys may not have been cut on the correct Wilmot Breeden Union blanks though. I do have some Romco MRN and FA keys which were presumably used on other marques but not on the TD. It would be great if the first use of an FA and the last use of an MRN in a TD could be confirmed, but the chances of getting accurate info almost 70 years after the event is now highly unlikely. Cheers
Peter TD 5801
P Hehir

For what it's worth, my TD ( EXLU 3257, build date Sept. 12,1950) has an MRN ignition cylinder which I believe to be original to the car.
Have to second your compliments on the other thread regarding Craig Seabrook. He restored my entire instrument panel to a superb level last year. Genuinely nice guy to to talk to and supplied me with an original Wilmont Breeden Union key.
SA Harvey

Thanks Steve. Yours is about 6 weeks older than mine. I also know Bill Chasser has an MRN and his is a month or so newer than mine.
Bruce Cunha

Lazarus, TD10855, build date October 9, 1951, has FA-539.
Bud Krueger

RD 12789 First week of January 52' has FA-596

Jim B.
JA Benjamin

This thread was discussed between 13/08/2019 and 16/08/2019

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