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MG TD TF 1500 - TF Ride Height

Could someone give me the measurements of the front bumper chassis bolt hole centers from the floor and the rear chassis bumper bolt hole centers, also from the floor? My car seems to be setting a tad low in the rear, about an inch compared to the front tires and fender opening in relation to the rears. I'm sending my rear shocks out to Peter Caldwell for a rebuild, along with stiffer valves and it would be a good time to have some rear spring work done if needed. With two people in the car it will bottom out when hitting a small sharp dip in the road. Front shocks are perfect as Peter rebuilt them last year. PJ

I am not sure of the correct ride height.
The front wishbones should be flat horizontal and the flat section of the chassis horizontal.
I think you will always bottom out in a TF. Many years ago I fitted TD springs for this very reason. With a full load of fuel,two people and touring gear it was way down.
I also think it reduced roll oversteer when driven enthusiastically.
Ray TF 2884
Ray Lee

Ray thanks for that info. Level chassis is a big help on determining the proper profile. I will check mine, but I think it might be close to those specs. I'll check it later today. Again, thanks a bunch for that info. PJ

Paul. This is what I get when measuring my TF - 320mm at the back and 385mm at the front. The tyres are 165 x 15 Blockley radials, just in case it makes a difference.
Dave H
Dave Hill

I fully realize that TF and TDs are not exactly the same at the rear springs, but I had a similar bottoming out problem with our TD,, NEW springs solved the problem,,
Note,, these are NEW springs, not re-arched old springs.

Steve Wincze

Paul -

I feel that my TF rides too low in the back:
15" = Center of front bumper bolts to ground.
12-1/4" = Center of rear bumper bolts to ground.
Nearly full tank of gas.
165-15R tires.

The rear springs are flat when the car is on the ground ... no arch in them, which I understand to be correct for TFs (?)

When I bought the car, the rear axle hit the rebound bumpers when I drove over the slightest bump in the road. Peter Caldwell at Worldwide rebuilt my rear shocks last year. It doesn't bottom out now.

FWIW, my neighbor's TF-1500 rides great. Doesn't bottom out. Smoother over bumps and brick roads than mine. I don't know it's height above the ground, nor do I know if the springs have been changed.

LM Cook

Only about two gallons in the tank when I measured it, but the springs are not quite flat. Otherwise my measurements are very similar to Lonnie's.
Dave H
Dave Hill

Thanks guys, I didn't realize that TF springs had a flat profile when supporting a full load, gas and passengers. I'll have to make a decision what I need to do to eliminate the problem. Thanks for all the input, much appreciated. PJ

Reactivating this thread here.

I have similar measurements as Lonnie Cook to bumper bolts, but this figure could be dependent on tire size.

I measured from rim of knockoff to bottom of fender lip.

RHD drive car, RHS side is 12.5 and LHS side is 12.25, would have expected RHS to be lowest.

It feels good and I have not noticed any bottoming, next time I am under the car I want to look at rebound rubbers and see if any evidence of touching.

What measurement are others seeing from rim of knockoff to lip of fender at the rear.


P G Gilvarry

As the thread up and running again, can I squeeze in my query as well?
I am just about at the rolling chassis stage of my ground up TF rebuild - no body or transmission - it was difficult to get the rear springs into position and my 75kg doesn't make any impression on the height, not a mm. I checked the springs and it would appear they are from a TD. I can dismantle the springs and get some curve pressed out or leave them and hope that the body + transmission + occupants + fuel will be enough to induce some straightening but it really doesn't feel that it is going to move. Anyone who has swapped to TD springs got any comments?
C I Twidle

Hi Chris,
as I said at the start of the thread I have TD springs fitted.
It is a personal preference as the UK roads are full of potholes and it stops the bottoming out. I had brand new shockers with the old springs and it still bottomed out when loaded. The difference in ride height is only noticed by the picky. I also think it reduces roll oversteer (no anti roll bar).
Ray TF 2884

Ray Lee

Thanks Ray, can't wait for the far distant day when mine looks like yours!
Because of the shortened distance between the spring eyes (due to the increased curve of the TD springs) the links are at full stretch and I need to use a lever to force them to start to rotate in the right direction. Even when I give them this little bit of encouragement I still can't induce any movement with my body weight. The individual leaf dimensions are identical between the two models, I'm just surprised I can't get any reaction. The roads near home on the Blackall Ranges of Queensland are certainly no better than those here in the UK (I'm in the New Forest at the moment) so the idea of keeping the springs set up to TD specifications is becoming more appealing.
C I Twidle

Are your rebound straps in place?,they should keep the spring in the correct position.
You will be amazed how much everything comes down with the all the bits in place.I had to use a pry bar to make the links go into place.
Ray Lee

Thanks again Ray, the fact that you used a pry bar has probably saved me the time and expense of removing the springs and having them reset. There were no rebound straps amongst the bits that comprised the car but someone kindly measured and photographed theirs so that I could fabricate some.
Actually someone else pointed out that the forward bolts should go from inside to outside otherwise they will hit the wings when you try to remove the springs so I will have to do a partial dismantle anyway.
C I Twidle

A few years ago I measured the front bumper bolt height on about 15 TF's attending the UK MG Live weekend at Silverstone. They varied from 13 - 15 inches, and the average was 14 inches, which mine is set at with radial tyres. I cannot obtain a reliable rear measurement because my springs are after-market copies and are clearly not of the correct specification. I have correct springs on order but they are unlikely to be fitted until winter.
1955 TF1500
N D Wallace

This thread was discussed between 16/12/2015 and 08/08/2017

MG TD TF 1500 index

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