Welcome to our resource for MG Car Information.



MG parts spares and accessories are available for MG T Series (TA, MG TB, MG TC, MG TD, MG TF), Magnette, MGA, Twin cam, MGB, MGBGT, MGC, MGC GT, MG Midget, Sprite and other MG models from British car spares company LBCarCo.

MG TD TF 1500 - Normal to have tail lights not level?

I've been meaning to ask for a while - is it normal to have one tail light higher than the other on a '53 TD?

The earlier rectangular lights seem level from old photos I've seen but the round ones do appear more like mine (wonky).

(SWMBO is to the front left and, unfortunately, the gigantic bag that goes everywhere with her is not carrying spanners)

- Tom.

Tom Bennett

tom, have you measured these? to me, the photo looks like an optical illusion. if i eyeball using the bottom, aft lip of each wing they seem the same distance. regards, tom
tom peterson

Thanks, Tom.

I'd originally thought something similar but there's just over an inch difference between the levels of the lights. I'd checked the car was level (using several different points to measure between with a spirit level) but the offside is definitely higher than the near.

I'd always put it down as most likely the PO's rebuild (in the 70s) but, as everything else seems to line up, I recently got to wondering if it might be in the original design

- Tom.
Tom Bennett

Hey Tom. Noticed you licence plate. I have a 53 YB, the licence plates on it are HBO 337, so I guess I cars were registered in the same place a few days apart. Small world.
Larry Brown

Can you give us the measurements from the tips of the guards to the 6 O'clock base of the light plinth? Measuring with a spirit level may only allude to the suspension or assembly, even rear bumper assembly. I would be interested to compare with my TF.

Matthew Magilton

I noticed my rear wings do not sit the same. One tip extends down further than the other. I never checked to see if the lights were positioned with the same offset. Nothing I can do to adjust the wings either. Those holes are set and it is what it is. I don't think they were too concerned with perfect body alignment back in the day.
l rutt

And what are the measurements on your wings I.R.? We should compare. We could be blaming the factory in haste, considering the long history of these cars. I think too many faults are passed off as a lack of concern at the factory.

Matthew Magilton

As a point of interest.. One sunday our group of MG's were on a picnic in west central Florida. 4 men on Harley's came in and spent some time with us. They were all retired men 70 yrs Plus. They were retired from British Leyland and had been metal bashers . Their job was to hand make the wings for mg's.
This would lead me to realize that no two wings were exactly alike.
Sandy Sanders

Tom I have square so not sure how the round tail-light housings are made but could you change how it fits and make it match by changing the angle of the tail-light housing?

Richard Taylor

I also have a round taillight car, and my lights are exactly the same heights. I wonder if there might have been aftermarket fenders made available for repairs, as there are in today's market. I also wonder if sometime in its past life, someone didn't convert a square light fender to match for a replacement. I am quite sure that the fenders (sorry; wings) on our car were made on a press and therefore could't have left the factory with such a deviation.
Steven Tobias

I too have met a man who worked in England building fenders for the T-series MGs. He said that he reported for work by first going to the tool crib and signed out his tools and patterns. He then went to stores for a sheet of tin. The quota was to hand fender a car a day – 1 front left, 1 front right, 1 rear left and 1 rear right – there were no presses, just hammers, dollies and English wheels. He said that he asked if he could change to making 4 of the same fenders on each of four days as it would be easier. He was told he could not because he might get sick and they would have four cars tied up waiting for fenders and besides he would have to go back to fendering one car on Friday to meet his week’s quota.
He also said that the bonnets were trimmed to fit each car individually after they were assembled but that quality standards were very high with even a small imperfection in a fender being cause for it to be rejected.
John Crawley

If one guy was making guards for one car in one day, then there must have been at least 40 of these very highly skilled guys for a days production on 40 wheeling machines (and that is not including the Rileys and all the other BMC products amounting to many hundreds of cars each day) I understood (perhaps incorrectly) that by the time the TD's and TF's were being built the panels were all stamped by Nuffield Pressed Steel and then some hand finishing was done, such as edge reinforcements being added and TF headlight nascelles being electro-welded on and all the edges cleaned up.

Matthew Magilton

This thread was discussed between 15/03/2010 and 16/03/2010

MG TD TF 1500 index

This thread is from the archive. The Live MG TD TF 1500 BBS is active now.