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Newsletter February 2020

Reports:

Sorry Graham but no events to report this month, you will have to make up the Enjoying MG report as usual!!

A couple of things were different this evening, we started the Notices earlier, should we do the Notices at 8.15 every meeting? Please let me know what you think. Then there were some changes to the room, I tried to cover some of the hard surfaces in the room but I'm not sure this had any effect, however Matt has agreed to look into getting an accoustic survey done for the room, let's see if this gives us any assistance. The other change in the room was to move the booth benches back against the wall, most comments I had on the night were that this was an improvement for us, however so I have some definitive feedback to give Matt please let me know your views.

Future Events:

Club Night - Tuesday 3rd March:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

March Madness Run - Sunday 29th March:

Trevor & Angie have had a few problems with the venue for this run but we know it will start from the Golden Cross at the usual time of meeting at 11am to leave around 11.30. The lunch destination will still be in the Brailes area, so we should have some less travelled roads to experience. I will email the menu as soon as this has been finalised.

Club Night - Tuesday 7th April:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Asparagus Festival - Thursday 23rd April:

 

This is the start of the Asparagus season and is celebrated at the Fleece Inn in Bretforton, several of us attended last year and it was great fun, so Nigel has offered to arrange this as a Club event. In order for the venue to cater for the Pork Baps Nigel needs to collect names, so please let him know if you you like to take part in the display and run.

Drive-it-Day Run - Sunday 26th April:

Drive-it Day is a national activity arranged by the FBHVC to encourage all classic car owners to take their vehicles out to show them off and maintain the historical past of the British motor industry.

 

This year we will once again be starting from the club base, The Golden Cross at Arden Grafton. The run will head East and finish at Stratford on Avon Golf Club, Tiddington Road, CV37 7BA, for Sunday Lunch.

The Golden Cross will open at 10.30am for coffee and baps, the run will start at 11.00am onwards.

 


The menu for lunch is as follows;

Starters

Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Soup

Prawn and Avocado Tian

Creamy Mushrooms, Smoked Pancetta and Asparagus Pots Served with Crusty Bread

Main Course

Roast Rump of Beef & Yorkshire Pudding

Roast Loin of Pork with all trimmings & apple sauce

Fresh Salmon and Asparagus wrapped in filo pastry served with white wine sauce.

All served with a selection of seasonal vegetables and roast potatoes

Desserts

Selection of Desserts from the trolley

Followed by Coffee & Mints (Tea if preferred) - 2 or 3 course


The cost including gratuity will be; 3 course £18.50 and 2 course £16.00. Payment in advance please.

The Starters and Desserts will be served at the table, however the Roasts will be from the Carvery.


Please book for the run and lunch with Alan and Liz on:

alan.griffith@hotmail.co.uk or 01789 294776.


Club Night - Tuesday 5th May:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Stratord Races - Sunday 17th May: Nigel has offered to organise another of his guided days at 'the Races'.

Ragley Hall Classic Car & Transport Show - Sunday 24th May:

 

Please book with Fred on tbury04@aol.com the Show organisers need the final booking before the May Club Night, so to be sure of getting an advance ticket the closing date will be the April Club Night (7th April). The cost per ticket is £4.00 but this is for your car plus 2 Adults (& 2 Children is anyone wants to take them!!). Fred is happy to accept the booking by email and payment on the Club Night. He will then arrange the display area for us. This is a local show we have not been to for many years, I think the last time was with the Heritage Run, so will be good to go again.

Bidford Wings & Wheels - 25th May: Bank Holiday Monday, David & Diane will be collecting names nearer the time.

Club Night - Tuesday 2nd June:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Weekend Away 2020 - Dorset - Friday 12th June to Monday 15th June:

Nigel has advised me that one of the couples have unavoidably needed to cancel their place, so there is a Pool side apartment available with the deposit paid. If you are interested in taking this opportunity to join us, please contact Nigel as soon as possible ( ), no deposit required.

Quiz-on-Wheelz - Wednesday 24th June: More details later, Graham & Lech are working together again, so will be good fun.

Show Night - Club Night Tuesday 7th July: Our annual gathering to show off your cars.

BMC & Leyland Show - Sunday 12th July:

Badsey Flower Show - Saturday 25th July: Please note the change of date to that previously published.

The list for 'Possible Future Events' is still on the Club website, so if you would like to get involved and try running an event then let either me or Trevor (ardenmgclubevents3@gmail.com) know.

Other Events:

See the Events diary.

We have received the following invitations from other Clubs:

MGCC Midland Centre - As in previous years, the Midland Centre is working with the Midland Automobile Club (MAC) at Shelsley Walsh on their Classic Nostalgia weekend, which this year falls over the 20-21 June. The Midland Centre will only be present on Sunday 21st. The MAC has once again agreed to offer tickets to members of recognised car clubs at a discounted rate when purchased in advance, this year £15 per day if bought separately or £30 for a 2-day ticket. Camping is also available at a further £15 per night for Friday and/or Saturday. Tickets are now on sale through the MAC ticketing website -

https://www.classicnostalgia.co.uk/tickets

Please ensure that you enter the title 'MG Car Club' when prompted to do so during the purchasing process. This will help us and the MAC to identify who has bought tickets. If any of your group are already MAC members they may need to contact the MAC directly to obtain a vehicle pass - please check with them for details.

This year, as well as seeing a return of classic rally cars to the venue, the MAC will be hosting a special 'Made in Britain' display, and classic car clubs are invited to participate. The Midland Centre is presently involved in discussions with the MAC on how this will work for MGCC members, and further details will be circulated when available. In the meantime, please see general weekend details below by scrolling down this page.

MGCC Midland and SW Centres - are organising what is called a 'Naviscat' event on 3rd May this year. The location will be the Old Prison at Northleach, which is on the Fosse Way A429, near Cheltenham, post code GL54 3JH.

I have the details which I can forward to anyone who is interested to give this a try.

Churchill Show: Sunday 14th June. Most of us will be away on our Weekend away, however if you are not going to Dorset this may be of interest.

Coast to Coast: 7th to 9th August 2020. Morecambe to Sunderland via Penrith. I have full details which I can email to anyone who is interested in this weekend event or contact: norman@frenchblat.com. I have been advised that there are a few of the 60 places still available.

HARROGATE MG 2020/MGOC NORTHERN NATIONAL - Sunday 9 August 2020

Following a very successful show last year, we would, on behalf of the Chairman and Committee of Harrogate MG Club, like to invite you and your members to join us for the weekend (or just for the day) of the HARROGATE MG 2020 event.

We are returning to Pateley Bridge for our 35th show during the weekend of 8/9 August 2020 with show day being Sunday 9 August.

Don't forget there is a discounted entrance fee of £4.25 per person for prepaid entry tickets. You only need to purchase 5 or more tickets to qualify for this rate. Your members paying on the day will still have to pay the normal entrance feel of £5.00.

We are pleased to announce that there will be the usual evening of entertainment on Saturday night, following on from the BYO BBQ. Camping is available, on site, at £5 pppn, (payable on arrival) so why not make a weekend of it?

If anyone is interested in this event or woud like to organise an Arden MG Club stand please let me know and I can forweard further information.

Other Matters:

Donations: We are making progress with arranging presentations for the gifts we decided earlier in the year and Carol from the Alzheimer Cafe in Alcester will join us at a Club Night either March or April and the Fund Raiser for the MDNA will come to the start of the March Madness Run to accept our cheque and give us a short talk.

Route Books: I have still got a number of Rally Plates & Route Books from the last Heritage Run, if anybody would like one please let me know before I put them in the recycling.

What Have You Done With Your MG This Month:

Lech has not been out in his Midget (he doesn't use it over the winter) but as we have had such a mild winter he thought we might be interested to be reminded what real snow looks like. These were taken after attending the 'European MG Event of the Year' in Norway, above the Arctic Circle!! Despite the rain and wind I think I prefer the mild one.

    

David W has also been in touch and I went over to his unit to see what he is doing to prepare his MGB Roadster, in the light of last year's experience, for circuit racing, mainly with the Classic Sports Car Club events but also for his annual trip to Malta. Looks like there is still lots to do!!

 

Fred uses his MGs all year round and joined in the display for the Rallye Monte-Carlo Historic on the streets of Banbury. All the display cars got to parade through the start ramp and be showered with the steam jets.

 

I have made no further progress with refitting my windscreen, I damaged the seal so need to get a replacement, however I have still been busy, I purchased a full set of parts to fully refurbish the complete brake system (excluding the master cylinder which I put new seals in last year) from Midland Sports and Classic when they were having their 20th anniversary offers and I have just finished fitting all the parts just need to replace the rear hose and fill/bleed with brake fluid.

Whilst I had the front hub off, I also replaced the bearings, many thanks to Lex for the Xmas present.

   

Trevor has been putting pen to keyboard again, so we have the next instalment on the building of his Duratec MGB Roadster:

Restoration of and Installation of a Ford 2l Duratec Engine into our MGB - Part 3.

Sleepless Nights and Calculations

With many of the main mechanical design issues completed, it was time to consider the handling and engine management aspects of this project. This is not the first time I have been involved in a bespoke car build. For 25 years I was involved in motorsport, and during that time built 3 cars from scratch as well as making constant modifications to go faster than the next guy. I had to learn about suspension geometry, most of which is talking about points in space and weight transfer when you go around a corner.


The MGB has a solid rear axle connected to the chassis with leaf springs. Each wheel cannot act independently from the other. This set up does not lend itself to the finer points of suspension tuning and the roll centre height is fixed. The roll centre height is the centre of the differential unit. This means, if you can imagine it, that when you go around a corner the whole-body pivots about this point. Depending on the track, centre of gravity height, strength of the leaf springs weight distribution and shock absorber settings, a calculated figure for roll stiffness can be found. Of course, this is also true for the front wheels, they will also have a calculated roll stiffness, based on the same criteria as for the rear.

The front wheels are effectively a double wishbone independent set up. Now with this set up the world is your oyster when it comes to making changes. (or get it wrong and your world ends) The top wishbone is the lever arm shock absorber fitted as standard, the bottom wishbone is the spring pan. I wanted to fit an adjustable coil over shock absorber which would give me the biggest scope for tuning/balancing the front roll stiffness with the rear roll stiffness, plus with adjustable shock absorbers also fitted on the rear, I can adjust ride comfort. This all may sound rather daunting, but the law of physics dictates that the stiffest end of the car going through a corner will lose traction first. This means that either the front or rear tyres will have the greatest amount of weight transfer in a corner, the tyre becomes overloaded and says not today thank you, and you head for the scenery.


There are proprietary kits on the market - Hoyle, Frontline etc sold by most main MG spares outlets to convert from lever arm to coil over shock absorbers but these do not take into account the lightness of the Duratec engine, also, they are not as adjustable with regard to camber, caster, instantaneous centre and roll centre height plus other adjustments that I may require. To cover all my bases and with my knowledge of suspension geometry, I decided to design and manufacture my own fully adjustable set up. I do not have a dynamic software computer programme to show me the way (probably could not use one anyway) so it was good old pencil, paper and calculator. One of the hardest calculations was what strength of coil spring would be needed to keep the front of the car off the ground and give a good roll stiffness balance front to rear. I could find no information on this whatsoever, as all spring rates related to standard 4-cylinder MGB engines or the rover V8. Luckily this can be adjusted by changing the thickness of the anti-roll bar, if a complete cock up has been made. This will not help if the front springs are not even in the ballpark, but the anti-roll bar is a very good way of changing roll stiffness. Incidentally there is no anti roll bar on the rear suspension, as I believe there will be a bucket full of powered oversteer available. Powered oversteer puts a smile on your face.


The golden rule of suspension tuning is - only change one thing at a time and judge the effect. Well I have completely blown that one. Because of the vast difference in weight distribution, centre of gravity height and roll couple value, I have had to change many parameters to hopefully have a well-balanced handling car. Like all things in life - talk is easy the proof of the pudding is in the eating.

Some other aspects of suspension design that I have not covered in this part will be covered later. I am sure you are all bored now with talk of suspension, so I will move on to SUCK SQUEEEZE BANG BLOW but this will be for next month.

If anything, I have mentioned about suspension geometry has whetted your appetite to know more, please just ask.

Job Vacancy

As you read this, I should have had the car back from the" make it look all shiny and new paint man" and be well on the way to having put all the bits back on (if I can find them). I am afraid that this will mean a part 5 as there are some interesting bits not yet covered.

I did have the "Stig" all lined up to give a full road report on the finished car. Some say if you pay him enough money, he will write whatever you want, he does not, so I had to sack him. This means there is now an open position for somebody to give an honest report on this car to see if we have come close to our original hopes.

So, do we know of anybody who has owned an MGB for a long time, has a feel for all things MG, is a pillar of society, honest and may have at some time owned other cars that shall we say handled better than your average saloon. Names on a post card please.


You will need to wait till next month when we will have Part 4 (this is becoming an epic).

Enjoy your MGs

Paul

----------------------------------- 

Newsletter January 2020

First of all can I wish you all a Very Happy & Healthy New Year to enjoy your MGs

I have received a number of comments that we should start the notices earlier in the evening, which I'm happy to do, so at future Club Nights I will stand up to give the notices around 8.15/8.30pm.

Reports:


Chilly Willy Run: This got the New Year off to a great start, this year we started and finished at the Golden Cross and a few folks took advantage of the bacon rolls before the run. The route was set out using only gritted roads but the weather was warm enough that we didn't need to, however there were some interesting roads for us to travel along. It would appear that one of the junctions changed from when we did the recce as it appeared different to the instruction but it was so close to the Cross I don't think anyone got lost!! It was great to see that two thirds of you took the day seriously and used your MG, my 'B' was indisposed but we did bring the 'New MG 124 Spider', maybe this is what the MGB should have become. There were 33 of sitting down to lunch and the staff at the Cross did their usual great job looking after us.


Club Night & AGM:

 

Very well attended for the January meeting with 54 signing the register for David. We quickly went through the AGM, Roger advised the that the Club had more than sufficient funds, which include a balance from the Heritage Run. David gave a rundown of the database with 96 now listed as a result of 9 new people, although only 62 were active in 2019. Alan expressed his thanks for all the support he had received over the years attending events and especially to his bank of willing helpers. Alan has stepped down from the role of Event Secretary and advised this was due to an impending house move out of the area (but not too far he will still come and see us), so Trevor has volunteered to step into this role, otherwise the existing officers were re-elected in the absence of any other volunteers. The minutes will be uploaded to the website.

 

After the AGM David announced the winners of the award for the 'Attendance at the Most Club Events' and the worthy winners were …..... Alan and Julia, well done, the get the bottle of Champers.

More of Norman's photos in this link: http://normanlarge.com/ArdenAGMJan20/

Future Events:

Club Night - Tuesday 4th February:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Club Night - Tuesday 3rd March:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

March Madness Run - Sunday 29th March:

Trevor & Angie have a venue planned for this event.

Club Night - Tuesday 7th April:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Asparagus Festival - Thursday 23rd April:


This is the start of the Asparagus season and is celebrated at the Fleece Inn in Bretforton, several of us attended last year and it was great fun, so Nigel has offered to arrange this as a Club event.

Drive-it-Day Run - Sunday 26th April:

Alan & Liz have planned a venue for this annual run.

Club Night - Tuesday 5th May:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Ragley Hall Classic Car & Transport Show: Date to be confirmed but usually the end of May, Fred is organising our display.

Bidford Wings & Wheels - 25th May: Bank Holiday Monday, David & Diane will be collecting names nearer the time.

Club Night - Tuesday 2nd June:

Social gathering at the Golden Cross.

Weekend Away 2020 - Dorset - Friday 12th June to Monday 15th June:

41 people are booked for this year's weekend away, details of the event are on the website, please talk to Nigel if you would like to join in the fun.

Quiz-on-Wheelz - Wednesday 24th June: More details later, Graham & Lech are working together again, so will be good fun.

Show Night - Club Night Tuesday 7th July: Our annual gathering to show off your cars.

BMC & Leyland Show - Sunday 12th July:

Badsey Flower Show - Saturday 25th July: Please note the change of date to that previously published.

Other Events:

See the Events diary.

Other Matters:

After sending out the last Newsletter I had reason to try and contact Alan & Hazel Carter, you may remember a previous Newsletter article from Alan in the 'My MGs' stories, Hazel replied with this sad news.

Terribly sorry to say Alan did not make it this far.

Forgive me for not letting you know - it's been very distressing losing him to such a cruel condition.

In his honour I am writing a book about his life and all the things we did to stay positive during the 18 months he had Motor Neurone Disease. He died peacefully with me and his best friend by his side on 5th June. He was cared for at home after he gave up work in December 2017, until the last 2 months of his life when he was in Marie Curie hospice.

I am happy for you to pass this note on to the members with my contact details.

Finally, Alan sold his beloved MG in the summer of 2018 as by then he had lost the use of his arms and legs. Half the sale proceeds were donated to the charity that supported us, MND Association.

 

Alan will of course be remembered within the Club as the person who named our 'Quiz-on-Wheelz, I have asked Hazel to let me know when her book has been published, I for one will be very interested to read about their 'journey'.

Donations: In Roger's report for the AGM he stated there are still some funds left from the Heritage Run and the 'Run' committee have decided to make donations to the Shakespeare Hospice, Alcester Alzheimer Cafe (both organisations we have supported in the past) and Motor Neurone Disease Association. The last of which is in memory of Alan Carter. There will be £500 for each of them. It was discussed that the funds the Club holds are more than required for our normal needs and it was suggested we make a further donation to The Air Ambulance.

Club Clothing: Due to an omission on my part, we need to place another order for the Club Clothing, so if anyone would like to purchase any of the items please let me know and we can spread the carriage cost between more people. Please let me know before the end of January.

Club Equipment: In the last Newsletter I mentioned the 'protection' bags for the Flag Pole & Banner, I have now gone one further and purchased a large bag (intended for a Xmas Tree) to carry them around. If you are using the Club Equipment at an event please treat it with care and use the covers.

Proposed Event List: Please look at this list (it is on the website, not far down the list) and remember that it is not exhaustive and any new event CAN BE ADDED, for instance it has been suggested we have a Dinner Dance at Xmas so I have added this to the list it just needs someone to volunteer to organise it.

Another suggestion I have received is to try using a different venue when we have a special evening on a Club Night (a Guest Speaker for instance) where another room may be more suitable. Great, all we need is the idea and someone to arrange it, please let me know and we can add it to the calendar.

As you can see in the minutes of the AGM, Trevor has been elected as the new Events Secretary and he has agreed to take over the coordination of the 'Events List', so please direct your offers to volunteer for events to him ( ardenmgclubevents3@gmail.com )or of course I can forward and message.

Route Books: I have been having a clear out and found a number of Rally Plates & Route Books from the last Heritage Run, if anybody would like one please let me know before I put them in the recycling.

Links to Norman's Photos:

As you may have realised by now Norman has become our 'official' photographer and his selection of shots goes back some time, he uploads these photos to his own website and the full selection can be seen (I only publish a small number of those he takes), so if anyone would like to view the back catalogue follow any of these links:

2020

http://normanlarge.com/ArdenMGCWRJan20/

http://normanlarge.com/ArdenAGMJan20/

2019

http://normanlarge.com/ArdenMGCCWRunJan19/

http://normanlarge.com/Patrick/

http://normanlarge.com/MarchMadness/

http://normanlarge.com/ArdenMalvernA19/

http://normanlarge.com/DriveIt19/

http://normanlarge.com/ArdenMGJune19/

http://normanlarge.com/AMGCShowNight19/

http://normanlarge.com/ArdenMGQonW19/

http://normanlarge.com/ArdenMGCBroughton/

http://normanlarge.com/AMGCSkittles/

http://normanlarge.com/ArdenMGNov19/

http://normanlarge.com/ArdenMGCWRJan20/

2018

http://normanlarge.com / Plum2018

http://normanlarge.com / Arden30

http://normanlarge.com / Show18

http://normanlarge.com / AMGCWW

http://normanlarge.com / AMGCRaces2018

http://normanlarge.com / 25Heritage

http://normanlarge.com / DriveIt

http://normanlarge.com / MalvernMG18

2017 Heritage Run:

http://normanlarge.com/HeritageRun17/

Click on the link, then click on any photo to view a larger image and scroll through them. A copy can be downloaded but if anyone would like a hi resolution copy Norman would be happy to send it to you, just note the event link and the photo number and ask him or myself.

What Have You Done With Your MG This Month:


For those who thought having no windscreen in my 'B' was a poor excuse for not bringing it on the Chilly Willy Run, here is a photo of it looking very forlorn in the garage.

Enjoy your MGs

Paul