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MG TD TF 1500 - Steering column help please.

The column was completely disassembled when I bought the car. What part numbers does part number 8 (in the attached diagram) go between?

TD 12524

TW Burchfield

Looks like the felt bushing. PJ
Paul S Jennings

The shop manual calls it a distance tube.
TW Burchfield

OK, I'm confused. I just went to the Anglo Parts web site and looked at the catalog picture for the TD/TF steering column. The part listed as # 8 in my original post is not shown. The catalog picture is otherwise identical to the one I posted. Part # 8 is also shown in the shop manual as part # 52 Distance tube, column adjustment. Can anyone throw some light on this?
TW Burchfield


If it is the felt bushing [#13] this dia. form Moss shows you where to put it. It is a split piece of felt so that you can add - replace at a later stage without disassembling the whole thing.
It goes under the Clamp assembly [#9] inside the steering column tube to take up the slack. There is also one at the bottom of the tube as well. [#14]

On MY TD I don't think I have this "Distance piece" if it isn't the felt bushing


R. D. Jones

Thanks Rod. I've already installed the felt bushings. The part I'm referring to is a hollow tube. I wonder if it goes over the key that keeps the two shafts together?
TW Burchfield


The hollow piece that Moss refers to as DISTANCE PIECE (Clamp() fits between the ears of the clamp that surrounds the steering column and is held by a bolt through the bracket on the bottom of the dash. The bolt passes through the DISTANCE TUBE. Keeps you from crushing the stationary portion of the steering column when tightening the support bolt.


Jim Haskins 1953 TD
J. M. Haskins

Jim, thanks. I have the clamp and the distance piece you refer to. I also have hollow tube similar to the one shown as part # 8 that is shown in the diagram in my original post. That is the part I'm inquiring about. I believe the part you are referring to is listed as part # 16 in the same drawing.
TW Burchfield

It goes underneath the chromed spiral piece, #7 on your diagram. The Steering diagram (Page 23)on the Abingdon Spares catalog shows the relationship. Bud
Bud Krueger

Thanks Bud. It looked like it might go there but I was unsure. Odd that the Moss catalog doesn't show it.

TW Burchfield

I don't see the point of the distance piece under the chrome spring piece?? Moss also do not show it on their diagram?
Abingdon Spares do. #52 page 23.

I had to take mine apart today to remove the wheel and drop the dash. Moving the direction indicator S/W to be under the dashboard.

Took a good look at the set up but I do not have this distance piece fitted.
I normally have to move the wheel all the way towards the dash to allow for my tummy - Which seems to have grown all of a sudden :)

A distance piece would prevent full forward motion I would guess? My chrome spring is almost all the way compressed when in the right position - and the clamp tightened.
The only slack I have is due to wear of the felt bushing. I think I will have to replace it with greased leather cut form an old belt. The felt just does not hold up to well.
It is most likely because the shaft was cadmium plated back in 1970. The surface is therefor not as smooth as it could be.

R. D. Jones

Hi Tim,

If you have access to a lathe I cannot recommend strongly enough making a nylon bush to replace the original felt one. Even after fitting a new split felt bush I could lift the steering wheel and it spoilt driving the car. A solid bush makes a world of difference.

Jan T
J Targosz

I think the felt bush works OK if you get the right thickness of felt, as it needs to be a really tight fit to avoid any slop. The first one that I bought was no use at all, so the secind time around I took the thickest available (the stock from the supplier varied a lot), then installed it with graphite grease.
Dave H
Dave Hill

GREAT Idea! I believe you are standing on the threshold of your new cottage industry. I will purchase the 2nd one! The skills of a Machinist are those I have long admired. For production simplicity, perhaps turning a long Bushing to completion....followed by sectioning to necessary Length. It is, I suspect, much easier to install also.
M Brand

Wouldn't the nylon bush have to be split to be installed?
TW Burchfield

If you remove the steering wheel and the spring cover and clamp - you could slide a solid bushing right onto the shaft and insert it into the outer tube.
No problem there.
R. D. Jones

I turned the bush to fit the shaft/column in my car. It's possible they will vary from car to car. I made it top hat section so the clamp now runs on the nylon rim which will help location. I had fitted a brand new felt that wasn't easy to install. The nylon one simply tapped down. What I disliked about the old set up was if I held the wheel at 3/9 o'clock I could move it vertically. I know others have made this mod.

J Targosz

This thread was discussed between 04/06/2015 and 06/06/2015

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