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MG Car Repair/1980 MGB LE Two Cylinders Not Running


Dave wrote at 2014-03-12 21:43:50

Problem solved.  I should have continued to follow good diagnostic procedure.  I trusted that the machine work had been completed correctly on the head. I was incorrect.

After reaching a dead end on finding the problem, I found a different head and used it instead.  My son needed a head for his car and took my "defective" one and diagnosed the problem.

He found that the valves and seats on those two cylinders had not been ground correctly.  We have now changed machine shops.  From now on I take nothing for granted.  When I have a head reconditioned, I will turn it upside down and fill the top of the cylinders with kerosene and test for leakage at the valves as shown in the John Twist video.  This is how he determined the flaw in the machine work.  The new shop corrected the problem and installed new valve guide seals (the previous job was wrong too).  After another valve job and a lot of frustration, his car purrs like a kitten on that head.  Note to self, never assume.  Test, test, test.

Thanks for your help.


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Howard M. Fitzcharles III


MG from 1956 (USA versions only) up and Engine theory.


Dealership line mechanic on MG, Triumph, Jaguar for 15 years, Instructor in commercial mechanics school 2 yr. Product information manager for piston and valve manufacture, Instructor & hotline answer man for import car parts importer 15 yrs.

Associate member SAE EAA member

Import Car magazine

ASE Master Auto with L-1 certification up to 2000

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