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MG TD TF 1500 - TF Fuel Overflow Pipes

Hi All,

I know,I know it has been raised before...........................

With regard to TF steel overflow fuel pipes,I have always thought that the lines are held together with a brass clip at a part of their run.

Looking at Frank Cronin's excellent photos of the unrestored TF9052,
the pipes do go through the hole in the bearer plate. However,is the brass clip affiixed to a bolt of the timing cover first?(through which the pipes go).

I seem to remember a close up photo on BBS depicting the actual
layout? Can't find it in the Archives.

Rob Grantham

They are copper pipes on my car. Sirry but I don't know about the clip.
Dave H
Dave Hill

Rob, paste this into your search engine, you might get lucky. PJ

The clip is there. Its just hard to see, as its on the front of the bearing plate.

Gord Clark
Rockburn, Qué.

Gord Clark

Hi Gordon and Paul,

Thankyou for your responses. When you do look closely at the photo,
I can see the outline of the brass clip now! The clip seems to be affixed to the bearer plate under the head of the setscrew holding the bearer plate to the block face. Done.

Re the second entry of the Thread,tried to eradicate it but to no avail.
I also would like to change my name heading to lower case! Popped up one day in erroneous upper case.

Rob Grantham

Mine are steel and have been silver soldered? into the union but they have been cut off, now only 2 inches long. It is a difficult job to shape them and fit them with everything in place, I haven't attempted it yet.


G Mills

I enhanced the clip photo a bit in Photoshop and I added a picture from Frank Cronin

Jim B.

JA Benjamin

Rob, click on 'customize' up on the top right line of options. Take it from there. Bud
Bud Krueger

Rob, no argument about the clip, its location & the bolt that secures it. I, like Dave, believe the originals were a brass union with a copper pipe. On the TD at any rate. Also I can't believe they would mess about feeding the pipes through the hole in the bottom of the bearer plate. Especially on the TF. What's the point? Much simpler to go over the top & down. I know there are just as many for & against on this one, however I'm going with what the factory had to say. The illustration on page 46 of the M.G. Midget (Series TD) Operation Manual Sixth Edition makes this very clear. The pipes go OVER the plate. Cheers
Peter TD 5801
P Hehir


Yes,originally on TFs they were steel pipes soldered into the carby bowl brass fitting. Copper on earlier cars. Many of the originals were replaced by use of copper,particularly during the 1970s-80s !

I have had contact with an experienced MG contact from New Zealand
today. He provided me with evidence on two(2) relatively untouched TF motors. Like the original motor in TF9052,there were the two(2)
overflow pipes running through the bearer plate,then being held via a brass clip which was affixed under the head of a setscrew gathering up the bearer plate and then into the face of the block.

Peter,as you know,the sketches in the pre production Owners Manual,
for TFs at least, is far from definitive and accurate. For example,the instrument knobs depicted are not what was supplied to the cars,nor were the wire clips to the breather tube hoses. (Jubilee clips were fitted in the actual production runs).

Now the challenge for me,is to redirect/reaffix the overflow fuel pipes
whilst the current TF is totally together! Hmmm..........

Thankyou to Jim and Bud also who 'enlarged' the photo shot of TF9052.

Rob Grantham

it is fiddly but can be done, I used cunifer brake pipe O/D reduced with emery to fit the banjo. I tried with steel pipe but cut too many fingers!.
Ray TF 2884
Ray Lee

I note your suspicion of the TF Operation Manual Rob but as far as the TD is concerned I've yet to find any errors in the Operation Manual, apart from one inverted illustration of the front end. Worth noting that both you & George have commented here on the difficulty of installing the pipes through the hole on the TF. The over the top path is so much quicker & easier. However, I suppose in the absence of irrefutable evidence, either path should be acceptable. Mine do go over the top however & will remain as shown on page 46. Cheers
Peter TD 5801
P Hehir


I have now checked out a very original,low mileage TF owned by
Mr Colin Stafford of USA (TF6688)which is on the Gallery section of The Original MGTF Midget web site. Yet again,a photo has shown the route of the overflow pipes through the hole in the front bearer plate,held also by a clip on the front of the bearer plate! Also,the pipes do not look like copper.

It is the relatively untouched cars that I take most notice of in looking at how the Factory fitted up parts.

When cars are 'got at' by previous owners over many years,the changes made can erroneously become the 'norm' re originality questions. I was surprised some years ago when I discovered that
the rear sidescreen cloth on both TDs and TFs,was in fact originally affixed (three(3) per side) to the steel sidescreen frame via aluminium,dome headed solid rivets ( with Ali washer under the head).
It was assumed for years in Australia at least,that the dreaded nickel
plated bifurcated rivets were done originally. Owners from around the world,who had owned their cars from new,demonstrated that their untouched rear screens were indeed affixed with the aluminium,solid rivets. An original,untouched TF here in WA also had the ali rivets in place.

Rob Grantham

Ray L.,

I am encouraged by your confidence in re setting the overflow pipes for my TF. i will need that encouragement as the temperature in Perth will hit 36 hot today!


I've only had two or three unmolested TFs (engines never removed) in the shop over the years, and can confirm that on two of them (all I can remember) the pipes were steel (unlike TD, which are copper), and were routed as in the photos above - through the hole, and down through the clip.

I seem to see a rubber collector on the end of the pipes in the Cronin picture; neither of the cars I remember had such a thing. Was it original and rotted off, or an owner-supplied improvement? I suspect the latter; but what about oil filler caps with a rubber sleeve covering the chain? I've never seen one intact, with my own eyes, but I have heard sworn that there was one. I just don't know.

I firmly believe that the operator's manuals are NOT a guide to originality, any more than the factory sales brochures are 100% accurate and infallibly accurate. Manual revisions were done with a maximum of speed and a minimum of effort, re-working earlier drawings. Why does a TD in a 1953 manual still have solid, early 1950 wheels? Too much trouble to re-do it, I suspect. Why does the TD Mark II brochure show bucket seats and cooling air scoops on the front brakes? Because they used the prototype for photography, not a production car. More than one owner has asked me to find those parts to make their Mark IIs more authentic!

Tom Lange
MGT Repair
t lange

Given that no two cars that ever left the factory were absolutely identical in every respect, due to different suppliers & parts availability in post war Britain as well as many hands on the assembly line and that it's impossible to find a car that hasn't been "got at" to some degree, including the so called "barn finds", it's really difficult to state that this was definitely the way it was done. Having said that however, if there are more examples of "original" TF's showing the "through the hole" route, then so be it.. I've modified a P clip to accommodate both lines & found that to prevent them vibrating together it was necessary to slide a small plastic sleeve over each of them before the clip was tightened. Cheers
Peter TD 5801
P Hehir

The factory was never concerned with originality!

So after they thoughtlessly neglected to write down all of the nitty-gritty details and some 60 years has passed, the best we can do is take note of unmolested cars and draw our own best conclusions.


Amazing how nitty details emerge from these threads vs copper and steel on the TD and TF.

If I knew before installing and bending my copper overflow pipes, I would of zinc plated the copper lines to look like steel!

Oh well.

Go for it Rob!

Frank Cronin

Hi All,

Just had a chat with a friend in Leeming ,WA who discovered and purchased his TF about four years ago in Western Australia. The car had been in storage for over 35 years and relatively untouched from new. Solid wheels and brought out from UK by the previous owner.He indicated to me that the fuel overflow pipes went through the
hole iin the bearer plate and then was 'clipped' in the same way as seen in the original USA cars.


Rob Grantham

This thread was discussed between 03/02/2016 and 06/02/2016

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