Jim Blackwood kicks off the 2008 British V8 tech sessions

British V8 2008 Tech Sessions

as published in BritishV8 Magazine, Volume XVI Issue 2, October 2008

by: Curtis Jacobson

Project Roadmaster (presented by Jim Blackwood)

Jim Blackwood led a hands-on tech session that got BritishV8 participants actively engaged in the "Roadmaster" project. That's right - wrenches were turned. If you're not already familiar with Project Roadmaster, you may like to read these earlier articles: MGB Roadmaster - Status Report 1 & MGB Roadmaster - Status Report 2.

Bolting doors back onto the bodyshell might not seem like a major accomplishment, but more important changes were taking place in quiet conversations. Several key players and vendors stepped forward and committed to helping the project move forward. A less-rusty bodyshell will be procurred, and key mechanical components will be transferred over. Terry Schulte committed that his shop will put a first-class paint job on the car when the time comes for that.

Big Block Buick V8 Engine
See? Plenty of room! A big block Buick V8 (455cid) fits like a glove into the "Project Roadmaster" MGB-GT.

Posten S-Divider   EGR (exhaust gas recirculation) ready
Poston "S-Divider" intake manifold (part #B-455) is aluminum, and will reduce weight somewhat.

Modified front crossmember (note the steering rack brackets)   Lower control arm
Modified front crossmember (note the steering rack brackets).

Narrowed Jaguar independent rear suspension   Lower control arm
Narrowed Jaguar independent rear suspension.

inboard disc brakes   Chevy Corvette master cylinder.
Jaguar inboard disc brakes, and Chevy Corvette master cylinder.

Jaguar wheel   Corvette wheel
For the time being, the Roadmaster is resting on mis-matched (Jag and Corvette) wheels - but that will change!

Fast Cars (presented by Ted Lathrop)

Paul Schils arranged use of a local shop's car lift, so that we could get up close and have a personal look at the Fast Cars suspensions, as installed on Terry Schulte's MGB-GT. We've discussed these suspensions in great detail in previous articles, so rather than repeat that discussion we'll refer you to our previous coverage: Fast Cars MGB Front Suspension & Fast Cars 3-link Rear Suspension. You may also want to review the rest of Terry's MGB GT V8 here.

Ted Lathrop explains features of Terry Schulte's MGB GT V8
Ted Lathrop explains features of Terry Schulte's MGB GT V8

Simple, robust motor mounts.
Simple, robust motor mounts for the small block Ford V8 engine.

Plumbing for the Ford engine's remote oil filter.
Plumbing for the Ford engine's remote oil filter.

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The oil filter is mounted below the driver-side headlamp bucket.
The oil filter is mounted below the driver-side headlamp bucket.

A Ford 8 inch rear axle is used in conjunction with the Fast Cars Inc. 3-link rear suspension.
A Ford 8 inch rear axle is used in conjunction with the Fast Cars Inc. 3-link rear suspension.

brace forward along the floorboard
The MGB's front leaf spring mounts are probably the weakest point on the chassis.
Fast Cars Inc. reinforces them by adding a brace forward along the floorboard.

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Mantell Motorsport (presented by Pete Mantell)

Pete showed up a full range of upgrade options for MGB braking, including even the potential option of installing MGC-sized components onto an MGB. It was a nice show-and-tell, where we could all handle and examine real parts in person. Here are a few of the parts that I took snapshots of:

Toyota "4Runner" brake calipers (part #'s C8554 & C8555) are becoming popular as a bolt-on upgrade for MGC.
However, with a little creativity and development work, Pete thinks they might be a good option for MGB too.

Notice that these 4-piston Toyota calipers feature two larger and two smaller pistons. This is to even out pad wear.
On most cars, the "trailing" edges of the brake pads operate hotter and thus wear faster than the "leading" edges.

This is a cross-drilled and grooved MGB rotor, from EBC in England.

This lightweight aluminum Wilwood brake caliper is part of the Classic Conversions Engineering "big brake" kit.


To go with the Wilwood caliper, this is a "big brake kit" rotor and five-lug hug adapter from Classic Conversions.


Advance Auto-Wire (presented by Steve Carrick)

At the British V8 Meet we learned some exciting news for fans of Advance Auto-Wire's excellent wiring systems. Steve Carrick has purchased the assets of the company and he'll be continuing its operations. (Steve has also renewed Advance Auto-Wire's commitment to supporting BritishV8 by sponsoring two articles in this edition of our online magazine.) If you're not already familiar with Advance Auto-Wire, you may want to review these two articles from our archives: Installing a Wiring Kit (with Dan Masters) and Installing a Wiring Kit (with Greg Myer)

Excellent schematic drawings for British cars are available from Advance Auto-Wire

Look how easily the wiring is accessed on Mary Schils' MGB!

eight fuses, seven relays, two flashers

Advance Auto-Wire fuse block

Classic Conversions Engineering (presented by Bill Guzman)

Bill's tech session was primarily a discussion of his new rear suspension design (although we talked a little about brakes too). If you'd like to know more about Bill's suspension, please refer to British V8 Magazine's article archive (Volume XV, Issue 3): The NEW "Classic Conversions" MGB 4-link Rear Suspension. A few small updates have been made to the suspension since the article was written. Notably, Bill has changed to a different supplier for shock absorbers (Carrera) and for link rods (AFCO Racing Products). The coil springs will now be chrome plated. The brackets will be powder-coated black.

Bill Guzman shows an MGB hub adapter

Carrera shock absorber

Disclaimer: This page was researched and written by Curtis Jacobson. Views expressed are those of the author, and are provided without warrantee or guarantee. Apply at your own risk.

Photo by Curtis Jacobson. All rights reserved.

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