#1  
Old 08-10-2018, 10:37 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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They pranged my MGB

I took my 1966 MGB to Maaco a couple of weeks ago to have it repainted. I just needed to protect the metal from rusting, as the original body guy did a crappy job. Maaco did an excellent job on Mrs. L.A.'s Tacoma. I opted for the guaranteed-for-five-years paint job, and they sanded it down to the bare metal. I was hoping to pick it up today.

Maaco just called. They said 'We were moving cars around, and there was an accident.' They damaged my right-front fender, and will have to repair it and repaint it. They also asked where to get the chrome moulding, as that is not repairable. I sent them a link to Moss Motors. They said I might be able to pick it up late next week.

As it happens, Mrs. L.A. injured her foot Wednesday night and cannot drive. I guess I don't have to pick up the MGB, leave the Prius at Maaco, and then catch an hour-long bus ride to pick the Prius up.
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Old 08-10-2018, 12:02 PM
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Ew, rotten luck!

Years ago I was pumping gas into my car at a service station when an employee backed a car out of the service bay very fast. Alerted by the loud zoom, I dodged away and he hit my car and pushed it a couple of feet sideways.

The owner of the station, who did not speak English very well but keenly understood that an admission of guilt meant liability, came running out waving his hands and saying "No pay! No pay!" before I had even recovered from the adrenaline spike.

Fortunately the police concluded otherwise. One of my tires had been resting on a quartz pebble, and when the car was pushed sideways the pebble scored a bright white arc where it dragged across the asphalt, giving the officer a clear indication or relative motion.
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Old 08-10-2018, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
They said 'We were moving cars around, and there was an accident.'
I got that call when my old Ford Escort was in the shop for tires. They offered either 4 free tires, or repair of the damage. I took the tires.

That car was hit multiple times. I always took the cash, never repaired the damage.
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Old 08-10-2018, 12:50 PM
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If you're gonna have your car hit, no better place than already in the body shop.

I almost envy you.
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Old 08-10-2018, 04:17 PM
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I worked with a guy who had leased a Jeep. Very near the end of the lease, one of the parking lot attendants ran into another car with it. Don't worry, the boss assured him. We'll take care of everything, pay for a rental, it'll be like brand new, etc. After a couple of weeks in the shop, they were bringing it back when it got T-boned at an intersection.

Try to explain that when you're settling the lease.
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Old 08-10-2018, 05:47 PM
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They also asked where to get the chrome moulding, as that is not repairable. I sent them a link to Moss Motors.
Shouldn't a paint and body shop already know where to get parts like that? I know you don't just drop in to the local MG dealer anymore, but it still seems like it would be part of their business to have a network for stuff like that.
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Old 08-10-2018, 05:55 PM
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Shops do have connections for the stuff they routinely work on, but I don't know if anyone even sees more than one or two MGBs on the road in a year. A shop can do brisk business for decades and never put a hammer on one. They are likely equally represented in parts yards and such, meaning not at all. For such rare items, it's reasonable to expect the owner has already done the work of identifying a parts source, making them the logical first step in finding the parts.

Last edited by Inigo Montoya; 08-10-2018 at 05:56 PM.
  #8  
Old 08-11-2018, 12:03 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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I don't know if anyone even sees more than one or two MGBs on the road in a year.
Sad, considering they made more than half a million of them.
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Old 08-11-2018, 12:20 AM
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Ouuuuuch. I hope that they're able to repair it properly.

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Sad, considering they made more than half a million of them.
Even back in the '70s, they weren't exactly common here in the States (though I have no idea how many of that half-million were imported here), and you don't see a lot of 50+ year old cars on the road, of any make.

Last edited by kenobi 65; 08-11-2018 at 12:21 AM.
  #10  
Old 08-11-2018, 06:47 AM
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Shouldn't a paint and body shop already know where to get parts like that? I know you don't just drop in to the local MG dealer anymore, but it still seems like it would be part of their business to have a network for stuff like that.
Back in the early 80s I spent 6 months visiting junkyards in an attempt to locate headlight adjusting screws for my midget.
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Old 08-11-2018, 06:54 AM
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Back in the early 80s I spent 6 months visiting junkyards in an attempt to locate headlight adjusting screws for my midget.
Hmm, well the frogeye versions had pretty weird headlights, so I imagine the adjusting screws would be a little weird, too. Otherwise, I'd think the headlight screws would would have just come from the Big Bin of Common British Car Parts.

But the frogeyes were all Sprites rather than Midgets, weren't they?
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Old 08-11-2018, 08:48 AM
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Even back in the '70s, they weren't exactly common here in the States (though I have no idea how many of that half-million were imported here)...
There was a dealership in Lancaster, CA where I lived in the mid- to late-'70s. MGBs were fairly common. In the '80s I had a '66 that my mom bought new, and two '77s. At that time, '77 MGBs were selling for about $1,500 so there were quite a few of them driving around. I still see the occasional MGB between where I live now and Seattle. A few couple/few years ago there was a very nice, red, 'rubber bumper' one parked at the corner market.
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Old 08-11-2018, 09:05 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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Ouuuuuch. I hope that they're able to repair it properly.
Me too. The thing is, the front fenders are new. Now I'll always know it's been damaged.
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Old 08-11-2018, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
There was a dealership in Lancaster, CA where I lived in the mid- to late-'70s. MGBs were fairly common. In the '80s I had a '66 that my mom bought new, and two '77s. At that time, '77 MGBs were selling for about $1,500 so there were quite a few of them driving around.
I stand corrected, though I know that the southern California climate is a lot kinder to cars than the Midwest is. Whenever I've been in LA, it's always been fun to see how many older cars are still on the road (and still in great shape).
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Old 08-11-2018, 05:53 PM
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By the way, "pranged". Very English.
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Old 08-11-2018, 05:57 PM
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Back in the early 80s I spent 6 months visiting junkyards in an attempt to locate headlight adjusting screws for my midget.
I hope he said thank you.
  #17  
Old 08-11-2018, 07:33 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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By the way, "pranged". Very English.
I learned it as an aviation term. (Bob Stevens, I think.)

Prang - To bump, crunch, bend, or break an aircraft.




.

Last edited by Johnny L.A.; 08-11-2018 at 07:35 PM.
  #18  
Old 08-12-2018, 04:26 AM
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More than you ever wanted to know: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAF_slang
  #19  
Old 08-12-2018, 10:06 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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More than you ever wanted to know: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAF_slang
I can't help but think of the 'RAF Banter' sketch.


I'm positive I learned the term from Bob Stevens's Prop Wash: A Fractured Glossary Of Aviation Terms.
  #20  
Old 08-13-2018, 08:19 AM
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I can't help but think of the 'RAF Banter' sketch.
Would "cabbage crates" still mean 'German' or would it apply to Korean vehicles as well?
  #21  
Old 08-14-2018, 03:10 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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Tuesday. I thought the shop might have an idea when they will have my car repaired, so I called. I asked, 'Do you have an ETA on the MG?' The guy was like, 'Still the end of the week.' It sounded like he thought I was wasting his time.

Dude. If you didn't break my car, I wouldn't be calling you.
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Old 08-14-2018, 03:26 PM
Hilarity N. Suze Hilarity N. Suze is offline
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When you said "pranged" I thought you meant they painted it with cheap watercolors.
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Old 08-15-2018, 12:38 PM
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If you're gonna have your car hit, no better place than already in the body shop.
Also the best place to hit a car...

A few years ago, I clipped a parked car while parallel parking. I left a note, but did more damage to my own vehicle than the other one; enough that I wanted to get it repaired. While dropping it off at the body shop I was backing up in their parking lot, and lightly tapped a parked car behind me. (It was apparently not a good week for me to be behind the wheel!) Luckily that car was already in for a fender replacement, so the shop told me not to worry about it.
  #24  
Old 08-15-2018, 08:13 PM
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Shouldn't a paint and body shop already know where to get parts like that? I know you don't just drop in to the local MG dealer anymore, but it still seems like it would be part of their business to have a network for stuff like that.
The car has become too rare for that. Best for Maaco to contact someone in an MGB club to find out. I'll bet this fix is costing them plenty.
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Old 08-15-2018, 08:45 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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I'll bet this fix is costing them plenty.
I doubt it. They're repairing the fender, rather than spending $900 for a new one. The trim is under $30. So it's just labour and paint.
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Old 08-16-2018, 02:47 PM
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But the frogeyes were all Sprites rather than Midgets, weren't they?
No, the early Midgets were frogeyes too (Hence the generic Spridget label).
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Old 08-16-2018, 03:24 PM
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No, the early Midgets were frogeyes too (Hence the generic Spridget label).
My experience is with the 'B', but I do not think this is true. The MG Midget (as we're talking about -- not the 1936 to 1955 T-type MG Midgets) was introduced in 1961 as an up-market, badge-engineered version of the Austin-Healey Sprite Mk.II -- which was also introduced in 1961. So no frog eyes on the MG.
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Old 08-16-2018, 03:35 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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Speaking of Austin-Healey Sprites, my neighbor is selling his.
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Old 08-16-2018, 11:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robot Arm
Shouldn't a paint and body shop already know where to get parts like that? I know you don't just drop in to the local MG dealer anymore, but it still seems like it would be part of their business to have a network for stuff like that.
We’re talking about Maaco here. Fine for basic paint and ding repair, but expecting them to know much about an MG than how to spell it is like expecting the crew at McDonalds to understand Kobe beef.
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Old 08-17-2018, 01:10 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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I have an extra valve cover, which I found when I was cleaning out the trailer. Someone painted it red, instead of the original dark red. I thought, 'Hey, I have a can of the original-colour red in the Jeep! I'll just go ahead and refinish this puppy. Why not?' So I sanded it to give the new paint something to stick to. (Actually, I'll get some primer and put that on first.) I went out to the Jeep to get the paint out of the little box of MGB stuff I'd tossed in there. I grabbed the can of paint and... it's practically empty.

So a new can of paint has been ordered. The new stickers, oil cap, and grommets should be here today. But I have to wait for the paint.
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Old 08-17-2018, 03:25 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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Got the call. The car is ready!

I drove down to Bellingham (25 miles). The guy brought the car around. There's overspray and tape residue on the hood from re-doing the fender they bent. They're going to polish it out, but that was a wasted 50-mile trip!
  #32  
Old 08-17-2018, 06:38 PM
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Speaking of Austin-Healey Sprites, my neighbor is selling his.
Looks like he sold it. Ad pulled.
  #33  
Old 08-17-2018, 08:16 PM
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Looks like he sold it. Ad pulled.
He parked the car in front of his house this morning, and I saw him talking to someone around noon. Then I saw the car driving around the neighbourhood. When I brought my MGB back from the paint shop, I didn't see the Sprite. It turns out it is behind a tree in my sight line, and it's under its cover again. I hope he sold it, as he said he needed the money. OTOH, it was neat having another British car nearby.

As for the MGB, it looks good. Not great, but pretty... and the metal is protected now. When I picked up the car I went to close the door, and there was no handle. They found it under the seat and put it on. When I got home, Mrs. L.A. discovered the right-front turn indicator was basically hanging by a single loose screw. The other screw is gone. *sigh* Also, I got a new gas cap from Victoria British. It broke immediately.
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Old 08-18-2018, 11:49 AM
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And... They put the wipers on backwards, which was a bit of a surprise when I turned them on to wipe off the morning dew.
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Old 08-18-2018, 12:46 PM
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Well, if you're going to own a British car, you may as well go the whole hog and experience British levels of workmanship too
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Old 08-18-2018, 03:47 PM
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Looks like he sold it. Ad pulled.
He lowered the price and put up a new ad.
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Old 08-18-2018, 07:45 PM
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Took The Missus for a ride. It was fun.
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Old 08-18-2018, 07:51 PM
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And... They put the wipers on backwards, which was a bit of a surprise when I turned them on to wipe off the morning dew.
Did they add more dew?
  #39  
Old 08-19-2018, 09:42 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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Well, if you're going to own a British car, you may as well go the whole hog and experience British levels of workmanship too
Next: Get the lights working.

The other day I discovered my car has a 'flash-to-pass' switch on the turn signal stalk. Today I found out that that's how they were made. I drove my first '66 MGB for years and never knew that was there! In any case, that works. The brake lights work, as do the turn signals.

Otherwise, I have no headlights, no tail lights, and no front marker lights. I didn't think to check the gauge lights, and it's too light to check them now. The map light switch is frozen solid and is immovable. I suspect a bad switch, so I'll try to pull the switch today and just connect the wires directly together. If I have lights, then I'll know it's the switch. If I still don't have lights, I'll suspect bad grounds on the headlights and position lights circuit. No idea where they're grounded, though.
  #40  
Old 08-19-2018, 10:24 AM
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He parked the car in front of his house this morning, and I saw him talking to someone around noon. Then I saw the car driving around the neighbourhood. When I brought my MGB back from the paint shop, I didn't see the Sprite. It turns out it is behind a tree in my sight line, and it's under its cover again. I hope he sold it, as he said he needed the money. OTOH, it was neat having another British car nearby.

As for the MGB, it looks good. Not great, but pretty... and the metal is protected now. When I picked up the car I went to close the door, and there was no handle. They found it under the seat and put it on. When I got home, Mrs. L.A. discovered the right-front turn indicator was basically hanging by a single loose screw. The other screw is gone. *sigh* Also, I got a new gas cap from Victoria British. It broke immediately.
I have a spare locking cap around here somewhere if you want it.
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  #41  
Old 08-19-2018, 10:28 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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I have a spare locking cap around here somewhere if you want it.
I just got an email from Victoria British. They're sending a new cap. Thanks, though!
  #42  
Old 08-20-2018, 01:40 AM
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I just got an email from Victoria British. They're sending a new cap. Thanks, though!
Hope it works this time.

Make sure you have this on hand too.. More important than Blinker Fluid for BMW drivers

Seriously though, get a tube of dielectric grease and as you clean the corrosion off your ground points and bullet connectors, give them a good coat. IME experience, Lucas gets a bad rap - just keep the corrosion at bay (hard after 50-60 years) and things work the way they should.
  #43  
Old 08-24-2018, 01:32 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is online now
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I have an extra valve cover, which I found when I was cleaning out the trailer. Someone painted it red, instead of the original dark red. I thought, 'Hey, I have a can of the original-colour red in the Jeep! I'll just go ahead and refinish this puppy. Why not?' So I sanded it to give the new paint something to stick to. (Actually, I'll get some primer and put that on first.) I went out to the Jeep to get the paint out of the little box of MGB stuff I'd tossed in there. I grabbed the can of paint and... it's practically empty.
I sprayed the valve cover with high-temperature primer this morning. Since I was done with the primer, I thought I'd just put the can in a cupboard. There's a full can of MGB dark red engine paint in there.

Well, now I have an extra can.
  #44  
Old 08-25-2018, 04:12 PM
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The other day I discovered my car has a 'flash-to-pass' switch on the turn signal stalk.
My old BMW turn stalk works the windshield sprayer when you pull it toward you. Took me forever to figure that out. And I have the manual and everything!
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