Curtis Jacobson's 1971 MGB/GT with Buick 215 V8
(originally published in MG V-8 Newsletter, Volume 5 Issue 1, February 1997. Revised and amended...)
Owner: Curtis Jacobson
BritishV8 UserID: Moderator
City: Longmont CO (formerly Greensboro NC)
Model: 1971 MGB/GT (purchased for $1.00 in 1987)
Date of Conversion: 1991 - 1993
Teaser! Scroll to the bottom of this page to see more up-to-date photos.
a 1963 Buick Special was purchased complete and running for $150.
Its 215cid engine was rebuilt with Silvolite 8.8:1, 0.030" oversize pistons,
a Kenne-Bell camshaft ("1XA" 0.462" lift, 260 degree duration, 110 degree lobe
center), and Edelbrock Performer 1404 500cfm carburetor. It's currently tuned for
operation at 5000' above sea level with 083 main jets, 089 secondary jets,
1460/065x052 needles, and yellow springs.
Engine mounting brackets were home-made; they utilize Barry Controls 22000 series rubber isolators. The MGB heater was removed and the heater/vent air inlet was converted for cowl induction, with a panel-type (Ford Probe) oiled gauze air filter at the firewall.
A Mallory Unilite distributor was originally installed, but it proved unsatisfactory for two reasons. Firstly, the Unilite distributor doesn't include integral over-voltage protection. Mallory acknowledges that this is a problem and causes a high failure rate, but instead of fixing the problem within the distributor (which would cost very little) they instead recommend users buy a Mallory remote "Active Power Filter" (~$39). A second problem with Mallory Unilite distributors is that they use relatively light gauge mechanical advance springs which lose their tension gradually over time. When it became obvious that the Mallory distributor badly needed to be rebuilt (i.e. "recurved" with new springs), I decided to instead have Jeff Schlemmer at Advanced Distributors rebuild my original Delco-Remy distributor. Jeff installed a Pertronix Ignitor solid state module in lieu of breaker points. The Delco-Remy distributor is unmistakably top-quality, more robust, and more easily serviceable. I use an MSD "Blaster 2" coil (and a ballast resistor) with it.
A Facet fuel pump was originally installed, but it was loud from day one and it didn't live very long, so it was replaced with a Mallory "Series 70" pump. The Mallory served well for ten or twelve years. When it failed, I replaced it with a cheap and cheerful fuel pump from Advance Auto (part number E8012S).
In May 2009, the original Buick cylinder heads were replaced with Rover 4.0L heads which have smaller combustion chambers (~28cc vs. ~37cc) and thus provide higher compression pressure. They were shaved 0.010". With the composite head gasket selected, they provide approximately 10.1:1 static compression ratio. The Rover 4.0L heads also have larger valves (1.570" inlet vs. 1.5", 1.350" exhaust vs. 1.312") and significantly larger ports than the original heads. For compatibility with the relatively high-lift camshaft, it proved necessary to have the valve guides cut down. Stock valvesprings were checked for coil bind, and found to be okay. All head work was performed by the experts at Abacus Racing. At installation, lifter preload was set to 0.040" (approximate average) by making and installing custom pedestal shims.
Cold air induction is one unusual feature of this Buick "215" engine installation.
Note also that a proper throttle linkage is employed, in lieu of a cable assembly.
Stainless steel vent lines ensure self-purging of air from the cooling system.
for about seventeen years, a stock chrome-bumper MGB radiator core proved more
than adequate for cooling the 3.5L engine. The key is that plumbing and airflow
need to be up to snuff. A transparent plastic remote header tank (VW part#
171121407E) was fitted high on the firewall. The radiator was re-ported to match the
engine (1.5" inlet and outlet) and the filler neck was removed so the radiator could be
mounted closer to the bonnet fully above and unobstructed by the radiator shelf (and
the reinforcement underneath which otherwise would block much of the core.)
Streamlining ductwork was placed ahead of the radiator. The slam panel, grille, and
oil cooler were all removed to streamline airflow and to reduce weight. Twin 8.5" Honda
Civic electric fans were mounted ahead of the radiator, with low-clearance fan rings
fabricated to increase fan efficiency. A stainless steel mesh bug screen on a lightweight
aluminum frame is sufficient to protect the radiator. An air dam was installed under the
front bumper to help reduce air pressure under the car and thus also to reduce air
pressure inside the engine compartment when the car is at road speed.
In May 2009, a new AFCO dual-pass aluminum radiator was installed. The new radiator was quite cost-effective because it's a popular, off-the-shelf model ("80107N"), except AFCO kindly reworked it to include 1.5" ports and a bung for a vent line to the remote header tank. The big advantage of the new radiator is that it mounts entirely above the MGB subframe and thus facilitates an elegant, easily accessible lower hose routing. The top hose is Dayco part number 70635 (1970-1979 Camaro and Monte Carlo) and the bottom hose is Dayco part number 71013 (1969-2006 Ford Mustang).
The cross-section of the new radiator's core is about sixteen percent larger than the old MGB radiator (12" x 17.75" = 213 in2 vs. 10.5" x 17.5" = 183.75 in2). Another advantage of the new installation is that the fan motors are spaced away from the core so they provide (about 25 in2) less blockage than before. I extended the fan rings right up to the new radiator core.
AFCO "Scirocco" dual-pass aluminum racing radiator (part number 80107N).
Twin Honda Civic electric cooling fans.
home-made sand bent Tri-Y headers into dual mufflers pocketed under the seats,
with exhaust dumping onto the ground just ahead of the battery boxes.
Making our own headers was really fun and rewarding, but the reason we made them was that back in the day we didn't know any good option. The RV8 hadn't been introduced yet. I'd heard a rumor that mail-order "block hugger" headers were restrictive and prone to cracking at the welds, plus they were expensive and could only be purchased by mail order (sight unseen).
"Tri-Y" headers on a V8 engine improve exhaust scavenging by separating pulses as much as feasible.
For the Buick V8's firing sequence, cylinders 1 & 5 need to be paired. Also, 3 & 7, 2 & 4, and 6 & 8.
(This is an older photo... it also shows the MGB radiator which was used for about seventeen years.)
These home-made sand-bent Tri-Y headers have slip joints at the collectors for easy installation.
This photo shows muffler placement, muffler heat shields, and Lokar parking brake cables.
I originally used the Buick 215 V8 front-cover and oil pump, an aftermarket
"high-volume" kit (longer gears and aluminum spacer) and remote filter, but the
original valve body was scored and would occasionally lose prime. Also, I came to
the conclusion that high-volume kits are a scam, and remote filters are messy.
I simply replaced the front cover and oil pump with new V6 parts from the local
Buick parts counter. The Buick V6 "metric" oil pump has an angled filter mount.
With the engine mounted where I've got it, a remote filter was no longer necessary
because an AC Delco PF47 filter spins right on! I have oil pressure as soon as the
starter spins, and great oil pressure under all conditions.
A Buick V6 "metric" oil pump facilitated doing away with the previous remote oil filter.
|Transmission:||1992 Borg Warner T5 5-speed manual, purchased new from Rockland Standard Gear for approximately $1000. Transmission is the same as a 1992 Camaro's, with the GM (angled) mounting and a 1 1/8" 26-spline input shaft, friction-lined rings (instead of brass synchros) and integral shifter linkage.|
|Bellhousing:||Buick, purchased loose with T10 transmission, flywheel, pressure plate, etc. (I sold the T10, and recouped my expense.)|
|Flywheel/Clutch:||I started with stock Buick parts. After running the car for several years I removed the flywheel and had a machinist friend grind off that heavy outer rim. The lightened (before: 33.2lb, after: 27.4lb) flywheel proved much more appropriate! However, after about fifteen years, when the original rope-type rear main oil seal failed and oiled down my clutch I decided to try something different. As long as I was replacing my original clutch (which had been from a 1992 Mercedes 190SL) I decided to "upgrade" to a new 10.4" Camaro clutch and diaphragm pressure plate. I don't need these heavier-duty (and just plain heavy) parts yet, but I might if I ever get around to installing a larger displacement Rover engine.|
Custom mount for a Girling slave cylinder, and shortened throw-out fork.
originally, I fitted a Girling (0.87" bore) slave cylinder to the side of the
engine, pushing a shortened lever. It worked, but pedal effort was too high with
the original three-finger pressure plate. After running the car several years
I fitted a Tilton "hydraulic throw-out bearing". The HTOB helped with pedal effort,
but frankly the Tilton unit was a pain to set up and bleed. (Its extended length
wasn't as long as I think it should have been, so it was operating at its limit.
Also, I had a seal failure shortly after initial installation.) When I switched
to a diaphragm pressure plate I decided to go back to a simple, serviceable
external slave cylinder.
The home-made Panhard rod attaches to a Ford 8.8 axle. A "doubling plate" sandwiches and reinforces the trunk floor.
I installed a Moss coil-over front suspension quite early on.
It never gave me any problems, but the design seemed rather unambitious.
Its design doesn't change the car's basic suspension geometry.
Kingpins, leaf springs, etc. were all replaced with new parts. An ADDCO front anti-sway bar was installed on polyurethane mounts.
I made my own steering column to move the whole driving position rearward in the car, not just because I'm tall, but also for improved weight distribution.
At the rear I installed telescoping shocks, but I found the ride to be very harsh so I discarded the shocks that came with the kit and replaced them with more appropriate shocks ('84-'88 Dodge Colt, Monroe 5877ST). They aren't great, but they're a whole lot better.
I can't stress enough how much adding a Panhard rod improved my car. I'd driven the conversion several years before I fabricated one. It certainly makes the car feel more confident in corners.
|Rear End:||1992 Ford Mustang 5.0 8.8" Traction-Lok limited-slip differential with 3.27:1 gearing. 2500rpm at 70mph. I purchased the complete rear end at a salvage yard for $500 in 1993 and then had the housing narrowed and leaf springs brackets installed locally for $100. Custom Moser Engineering alloy axle shafts cost an additional $290. The hardest part of fitting the Ford axle was fabricating a parking brake cable system.|
new MGB master cylinder. (Note: these are now made by Lucas instead of Lockheed).
front - MGB (Brembo) rotors, EBC "Yellow Stuff" pads, Wilwood 2psi residual pressure valve.
rear - Ford 9" diameter drums, 13/16" wheel cylinders, Wilwood 10psi residual pressure valve.
Lokar parking brake cable set connected to (3/4") extended MGB lever.
Falken Azenis RT-615 tires (205/50, 20.4# new) on Panasport 8-spoke wheels
(15"x6", -22mm offset, 15.0# each, polished rim). McGard 64000 lug nuts (1/2"x20 by 1.5", cone seat).
Note: I formerly used Goodyear 195/60 tires on Minator 8-spoke (14"x5.5", 13.6#) wheels.
Fuel level - Stewart Warner (electrical)
Oil pressure - Stewart Warner (mechanical)
Water temp - Stewart Warner (electrical)
Speedometer - VDO (electronic/programmable)
Air/fuel ratio - AEM (electronic. Uses a Bosch UEGO wideband oxygen sensor.)
Tachometer - Sun (I got it used, as a gift. It doesn't match, but it works well)
Notes: the first three gauges (above) are mounted in a removable panel with the switches, circuit protection, etc. In theory, you could unfasten four Dzus (quarter-turn) fasteners and a couple electrical connectors and take the whole assembly to your workbench for service, but if I ever rebuild it I'll move the circuit protection to the area over the passenger-side footbox to simplify the overall design.
In May 2009, a Racetech (made-in-England!) steering wheel was installed, utilizing a quick release hub.
A handy tuning aide, the AEM air/fuel ratio gauge utilizes a Bosch UEGO wideband oxygen sensor.
Nippondenso 45A internal-regulator alternator from a Chevy Swift (Suzuki part# 31400-86210).
This alternator is very lightweight and has been perfectly reliable for many years.
All new home-made wiring featuring crosslink insulation (instead of PVC) and Packard Metri-Pac sealed connectors. Where possible, the wiring has been moved inside the car (instead of running under the floorboards, etc.) Fuses have been moved inside the cabin because (a) it's a cleaner, drier environment and (b) it's cooler.
Single 12-Volt battery in passenger-side location. A battery disconnect switch (with key) has been fitted very near the battery.
I've upgraded most of the lights to more modern designs: front turn signals from VW Jetta (part# 165953155), side markers from Hyundai Excel, license plate lamps from Toyota Corolla, and a Chevy S10 rearview mirror with integral map lights in lieu of the original dome lamp. All these lights function better than original equipment (e.g. more efficient reflector and lens designs, lighter weight, more streamlined styling, plus they're inexpensive and pretty much maintenance-free.)
After many years of using halogen sealed beam headlights, I purchased a set of Wipac "Quadoptic" (Made in England) H4 halogen headlamps at a BritishV8 meet auction. Their light output and pattern seem quite good, and I'm very pleased with them so far.
Left: Chevy S10 rear view mirror with integral map lights. Right: 12V power socket & binder posts.
PPG basecoat/clearcoat. The color is one of the darker shades of British Racing Green -
Jaguar's "Brooklands Green" (from the mid-nineties) - with a white Sebring stripe.
The car's interior has been painted to match. Floorboards, luggage area, tranny tunnel,
etc. were painted with rugged, textured 3M "Rocker Schutz" rocker-panel paint.
Note: I recently sent a big batch of steel engine compartment parts off to Pete Mantell
of Mantell Motorsport to media blast and powder coat in satin black epoxy. I'm very
pleased with the look, and the powder-coated finish should prove more durable than the
previous paint job.
The six-point roll cage was made from 1.75" seamless (DOM) mild steel tubing, w/ 0.090" wall thickness.
Note the horizontal tubes (a) under the dashboard, (b) at shoulder-strap height, and (c) low, behind the seats.
In this view, you can also see the built-in tool chest. Its lid is held down by Dzus quarter-turn fasteners.
The lightweight polycarbonate rear quarter windows are easily removable for terrific ventilation.
They're secured in place with Dzus quarter-turn fasteners, three per window.
(The right-hand photo also shows one of many supplemental cage-to-body brackets.)
six point roll cage (which aids handling due to improved chassis rigidity), plus
I stitch/seam-welded all body seams in the engine compartment for added strength.
Five point seat belts. Home-made aluminum dashboard (with early-model MGB
padded eyebrow) and aluminum door trim.
I invented quickly-removable rear quarter windows. The glazing is polycarbonate instead of glass for a big weight savings, and they're mounted to lightweight steel box-tube frames which are held in by three quarter-turn (Dzus) fasteners per window. Built-in tool box in cargo area.
|Cost:||right about 10 grand. I didn't save receipts, and I try not to think about it. Honestly, these cars can be pretty economical if you're disciplined. I did most of the work myself or with the help of friends, including especially Rob Henson (formerly of Virginia Tech and Volvo Trucks, now at John Deere) and Ashley Dudding (formerly of Virginia Tech and Volvo Trucks, now at Hendrickson), two really gifted engineers. Ashley is a master of the almost-lost art of welding with acetylene.|
I have a very strong preference for chrome-bumper MGBs, and especially GT's, so
I generally disagree with the common advice to seek later model cars for conversion.
The later chassis may possibly make sense for people who will be buying pre-made "kit"
parts and who are intimidated by a little metal work, but otherwise it offers little
advantage. To handle or look right, later MGB's should be lowered to early-model specs
or even lower. They also need to lose their awful, heavy black bumpers. Those changes
have offsetting costs of their own. Contrary to common advice, I didn't have any
problem locating my Buick 215 V8 engine with plenty of clearance to the steering/suspension
crossmember and unmodified steering rack. (I've never understand the make-work
suggestion of using a later model "rubber-bumper" crossmember, rack, steering u-joint,
steering column, etc. - plus lowered springs. That's nuts! My oil filter even spins
directly onto the engine. How often do you see that in by-the-book conversions? It's
proof that there are many ways to skin a cat.) Finally, at the time and place where
I built my car the state emissions requirements would've been harder to meet with a
later-model car. I would've had to fit catalytic converters for annual inspections.
On my cars, if a part breaks I don't replace it with a similar part. I require that replacement parts must be better by design or of demonstrably better quality. In some cases, that requirement pushes me into unorthodox designs, but I believe my philosophy has helped me to build a more reliable MGB.
The main reason British cars have a questionable reputation for reliability is their electrical systems. If it weren't for Lucas, everything would be different. There might still be an MG dealer in your town! If you're willing to accept the challenge of upgrading to a better engine, you certainly shouldn't be intimidated about upgrading the car's electrical system. Research first, starting with the BritishV8 newsletter, of course! You really can re-wire your car with better parts and techniques than MG ever had access to.
I particularly recommend Japanese OEM alternators and electric fans.
Wherever possible I try to use modern-OEM parts, and I usually prefer parts from a junkyard or local car dealer's parts counter over anything from a discount parts superstore or hot-rod parts catalog. (I refuse to buy parts from Walmart, or any part made in mainland China.) There are parts on my MG from at least twelve different OEM's representing six countries.
This little car still makes me smile every single time I drive it. I've had her
over twenty years and I'm comfortable with her, but she is by nature and intent a continuing
project. Since sorting out the conversion she's proven very reliable, although after about
fifteen years I did have to replace a leaky rear main bearing seal, which required pulling
Frankly, I've driven much more powerful and refined MGB V8 conversions... but Bonnie
still feels, sounds and looks more like a racecar than any other MGB I've driven. I wouldn't
trade her! (Being a GT, plus having a cage, my car is really noticeably more rigid. In
my opinion that's a great thing.) My main plan for the future is just to drive more!
This shows one of the custom motor mounts and the Buick V6 "metric" oil pump, which angles the filter forward.
Note: my friend Pete at Mantell Motorsport media blasted & powder-coated all the black steel parts shown here.
Notice the tiny Nippondenso alternator and the external clutch slave cylinder, both on custom brackets.
The seven accessory mounting bosses on Rover 4.0L heads are placed differently than the two bosses
on original Buick 215 heads. Upgrading heads necessitated significant alternator bracket modifications.
Also, two bosses had to be cut off to clearance the driver side bulkhead. A very surprising difference
between Buick and Rover heads is that exhaust port spacing is actually slightly different - just enough
that I had to enlarge all the mounting bolt holes in my precision-made headers!
Notice that the radiator is directly above the anti-sway bar, not out in-front-of the anti-sway bar!
The engine also sits uncommonly far rearward. Obviously, the point is better weight distribution.
As measured at British V8 2013, this car weighed 2150 pounds "wet" (i.e. full tank of fuel).
That's about 160 pounds lighter than original, and 277 pounds less than a "factory" MGB GT V8.
Corner weights: 521 (LF), 546 (RF), 542 (LR), 541 (RR). Distribution: 49.63% front to 50.37% rear.
2011: A Custom Carbon Fiber Bonnet Is Installed
The new bonnet weighes less than five pounds. Over twenty pounds less than the steel one!
These photos are from shortly after I received the bonnet from Dave Craddock of Preform Resources.
Hood pins will be installed to hold down the front of the bonnet. Hidden aluminum tabs hold down
the back end. They slide into slots cut into the MG's steel bodyshell, above the original hinges.
The large "RV8 style" bulge in the bonnet provides room for growth.
I've been thinking of making some changes to the induction system...
My car has looked old-school for a long time. This is something a little different.
The front of the hood skin is now held down by a pair of OMP aluminum hood pins.
(At right: the view from below. The hood skin is stiff without reinforcements.)
April 2012: My First Home-Made Carbon Fiber Part
This custom carbon fiber and epoxy recirc shield touches the bottom of the bonnet all
the way across, preventing any airflow from bypassing the radiator. This part only
weighes about five ounces! It'd be even lighter if I had tools for vacuum bagging.
Foreground: the new carbon part, freshly removed from the mold (and trimmed on a bandsaw.)
Background, bottom to top: a quick-and-dirty fiberglass/polyester prototype, an MDF "plug",
and the fiberglass mold made by draping over the plug. Obviously I could have made the
recirc shield out of aluminum or whatever, but learning new fabrication techniques is fun.
May 2012: Coilover Front Suspension with Dropped Spindles
Gutted and milled out Armstrong lever shock absorbers have been combined with GAZ single
adjustable coilover shock absorbers from Moss Europe and Eibach 525 pound/inch springs.
Lower spring pans from Moss Motors have been drilled out to reduce their weight. Dropped
spindles sourced from Targett Motorsports lower the car one inch, but more importantly
they shift the suspension's roll center higher. Most importantly of all, the steering arms
have been modified to minimize bump steer associated with the lowered ride height.
April 2013: Wilwood Dynalite Brake Calipers and 11.75" Vented Rotors
Wilwood Dynalite four-pot forged aluminum brake calipers and 11.75" vented rotors,
sourced from Bill Guzman at Classic Conversions Engineering.
Electronic Fuel Injection
A bespoke fuel injection system is gradually coming together! The basic plan is to combine
a Rover manifold and injectors, a custom cowl-induction plenum, a GM throttle body, and a
custom built/programmed MegaSquirt (speed-density) control system.
6061-T6 aluminum (16-gage) has the right properties for a wraparound plenum wall. However,
to form it with modest force you must first anneal the bend region. Draw a line on the surface
with a Sharpie, and then use a propane torch to heat the surface until the line disappears.
(I had to repeat the annealing process several times as I worked my way around each bend.)
December 2012: a Rover fuel rail has been extensively modified, then electroless nickel plated.
The plenum wall has been welded up. I also fabricated a new air cleaner housing.
This photo shows attachment of PCV and MAP sensor port block to the bottom of my plenum.
The guys at Peterson Fluid Systems in Denver certainly do beautiful TIG welding, don't they?
They're fun people to work with too. (Photo by Mike Morten for BritishV8.)
Rover intake manifold thermostat bypass has been relocated to suit Buick style timing cover.
These trumpets have been carefully trimmed to equalize volume and length from
intake valves all the way to the tips of the trumpets.
Plenum wall trimmed down (at an angle) and capped with a lid.
Note racing stripe offset to one side, to echo my car's paint scheme.
My very good friend Scott McRoberts has been incredibly helpful with this project.
I heartily recommend his family business: McRoberts Machine of Longmont Colorado.
The throttle linkage is rather elaborate, but it seems to work well.
I sent it and some other parts out to be electroless nickel plated.
I'd planned to use a Hyundai crank sensor because they're widely available and have a nice
form factor. After mounting the Hyundai sensor on my engine, I thought to verify its signal
output. Instead of producing a 0 to 5 volt waveform, the output toggled between 5 and 8 volts.
So... this is a second generation Hall effect sensor on a second generation bracket.
This is a "36-1" trigger wheel: it has 36 teeth positions on ten degree centers and one
missing tooth to provide a reference for indexing. I mounted the trigger wheel between
balancer and crank pulley on the six existing bolts. (The six-hole pattern is unusual.)
The trigger wheel shifted my crank pulley out of alignment, so I made a spacer for the
water pump pulley and a new outboard bracket (and spacer) for the alternator.
Here's a snapshot of the MS3-Pro engine computer. Initially, I'll only use it to control
electronic fuel injection. It's much more powerful than that! Ultimately, this same tidy
black box will control electonic ignition and will be handy for data logging too.
Although designed to be easily removable for service or upgrades, this instrument panel has
in fact served without modification from 1991 until now. Originally, a fuse panel was
mounted on the back side of the panel. As part of the EFI installation, I decided to add
several relays and to make the long-overdue upgrade from glass fuses to blade fuses.
This new fuse and relay center will be mounted on the firewall next to the MS3-Pro ECM.
Incidentally, the two relays and two fuses at right are highly recommended features of
the MeqaSquirt installation. Fuel pumps and injectors produce a lot of "noise" which
could potentially compromise the ability of the control module to "hear" various sensors.
Part of this fuseblock was assembled by American Autowire (and marketed as a "Comp-9" kit).
I bought it (at auction) because I recognized they'd used DillBlox modular components. Thus,
it was easy for me to add a two-#10-power-stud block and also a two-relay-two-fuse block.
I also re-wired one of the previously existing relays to control my radiator cooling fans.
An intake air temperature (IAT) sensor is installed between the new fuse/relay center
and the MS3-Pro controller. Cables to the switch/gauge panel will pull out about eight
inches further. It attaches with three Metri-Pack connectors. The oil pressure gauge
is mechanical, and in this view you can see the hose that connects to it.
In-tank fuel pumps offer major advantages: fuel cools them and also muffles their noise.
However, a stock MGB fuel tank measures just six and half inches tall. I decided to
mount a Walbro GSS250 (190 liter per hour) fuel pump at a 45 degree angle.
A Honda Civic (1992-on) prefilter facilitated the installation.
Fuel sloshing within the tank could easily cause the filter to come loose from the fuel pump,
so some sort of baffle is highly desirable. I fabricated a "false sump" type baffle from
materials in my recycling bin: an old solvent can and scraps of half inch box tubing.
A new fuel outlet was fabricated from an AN-6 male weld-in fitting and a scrap of 5/16" stainless
steel tubing. Electrical passthrough connections were created by stacking PTFE washers of two
different outside diameters. The MGB's original fuel pickup remains in place, but will now
be used as a return line directly to the false sump.
The higher pressure fuel supply line is PTFE (Teflon) lined with stainless steel braid
and a black outer sheathing so it's easy to keep clean plus less destructive to chassis
paint along its routing. Fragola straight AN-6 fittings are used at the fuel filter.
Fragola sixty-degree swivel fittings are used at the fuel rail and fuel tank.
Install it and forget it: an AC Delco steel fuel filter will provide years of
trouble free service. AN-6 adapter fittings mate it to the new fuel lines.
Fuel injector and sensor wiring is clipped to a formed and nickel plated steel rod
assembly, and then covered in nylon convoluted tubing of various (staggered) sizes.
Throttle position sensor (TPS) and Idle Air Control (IAC) stepper motor valve
connections on the side of the throttle body assembly.
At this point the EFI system is running very, very well in batch-fire mode and I've put a
couple thousand miles on it... but I want more. With the addition of a cam position
sensor, I'll be able to upgrade to sequential injection and implement electronic ignition.
This photo shows the Ford Taurus/Windstar V6 cam position sensor I bought to adapt...
Center: the new custom Buick-compatible cam position sensor I built with help from my good
friend, machinist Scott McRoberts. Left: an old Buick 350 distributor contributed its drive gear,
but I decided not to use its housing. Right: Ford sensor housing. The Ford shaft was cut
down in diameter, shortened, and flats were milled onto it to drive a Buick oil pump.
Here's what the new custom cam position sensor looks like, installed. What exactly does this
part do? Besides mechanically driving the oil pump, the sensor simply tells the computer
which stroke the engine is on. That's why it only needs one "tooth", and why the computer
only needs to check its output once as the starter motor turns over the engine.
This simple bracket between the cylinder heads will support the ignition coils.
Here's the mount I invented to hold eight Chevy LS2 Truck ignition coils. These are
bad boys - possibly the most powerful coils ever installed by any major OEM. I'll
use the wire harnesses Chevrolet supplied with them (one per cylinder bank).
Now I'm ready to measure for new spark plug wires.
Use by written permission from "britishv8.org" only.