Richard Benson's 1975 MGB with Buick 215 V8 Engine

Richard Benson's 1975 MGB with Buick 215 V8 Engine

as published in British V8 Newsletter, Volume XII Issue 2, May 2004

Owner: Richard H. Benson
City: Elizabethtown, PA
Model: 1975 MGB
Engine: Buick 215 (from a 1962 Buick Special)
Conversion performed by: Owner

Engine Specs: 10.25:1 C/R, Stock Cam & Offenhauser valve covers. Weber gear reduction starter. in-line fuel pressure regulator, Accel coil, performance flex fan, Kenne-Bell oil pressure booster plate and a Buick V-6 high output oil pump.
Intake: Edelbrock 1404, 500 C.F.M., manual choke.
Exhaust: Buick 300 cast iron manifolds, 2.25" primary & 2.5" exhaust pipe.
Engine Electrical: NGK spark plugs, Accel wiring, clear distributor cap, new GM alternator, new electric fuel pump.
Cooling: D&D aluminum 4-Core radiator, Posies Street Rods custom aluminum shroud, and large overflow tank mounted on firewall.
Transmission: New Borg-Warner "World Class" T-5 w/ D&D Fabrications billet aluminum shifter, and Hurst shift boot & plate. D&D T-5 cross-member and mounts, Weber performance clutch, Weber hydraulic throw-out bearing, Weber cast aluminum flywheel.
Front susp.: Complete rebuild with V8 bushings.
Rear susp.: Tube-shock conversion kit, new bushes and spring pads.
Brakes: All new stock components and heavy-duty hoses.
Wheels/Tires: Datsun 280Z 14x6 4-lug alloy wheels with MG logo center caps. Goodyear AquaTread, 185/70x14.
Exterior: Rubber-bumper converted to chrome-bumper. New hood and fiberglass front fenders. Painted w/ Autumn Brown clearcoat metalic (2000 Lincoln LS color).
Interior: Dash and interior colored Desert Sand. Seats, Sunvisors and under-dash panels dyed to match. Tan seatbelts and trim. Pontiac Fiero seats w/headrest speakers. V.D.O. speedometer and tachometer. Stock wiring harness has been expanded.
Sources: MG V-8 Newsletter (which is now The British V8 Newsletter). SpeedPro Series Books: "How to Give your MGB V-8 Power", "How to Improve MGB, MGC & MGB V-8", "Porters Guide to Purchase and Restore". Videos: "MGB V-8 Power on a Shoestring Budget", "Classic Car Interior Re-Trim", AMGBA, "MGB Driver", D&D Fabrications.
Comments: Problems overcome: I purchased an MSD ignition box before I had completed the swap. When the time came to install the box, it turned out to be defective, however the warranty had since expired. I called their non-toll-free number: No satisfaction. Fortunately the car runs perfectly without the box.

I originally had a T-50 5-speed transmission with mechanical clutch fork. This was very problematic. I'd recommend the use of a hydraulic throw-out bearing and the D&D Fabrications transmission crossmember. The stock Buick starter is not dependable, so I would also recommend the purchase of an aftermarket gear-reduction starter.

Things I'd do differently next time: instead of extending the stock wiring harness, I would get an all-new Ron Francis or American Autowire harness and re-wire everything. I'd also mount the fuse-box inside the passenger footwell.

General recommendations: install a battery cut-off switch A.S.A.P. It makes it that much easier to work on the electrical system. A battery maintainer (i.e. trickle-charger) mounted in the trunk is a real plus: mine is wired directly to the battery terminals and I just plug it in when I store the car. I've learned a lot along the way: plan ahead and don't get too anxious when the end is near.

Richard Benson's 1975 MGB with Buick 215 V8 Engine

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