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bravenrace
bravenrace PowerDork
7/18/12 10:32 a.m.

MG Midgets, that is. Whats the deal with these? My bro in law had one years ago, and I remember three things about it. One, it broke down all the time. Two, we pulled the engine by hand with a strap. Three, it was a total blast to drive. There are about a dozen of them on CL right now in my area, and they are cheap. What do I need to know about them?

ransom
ransom SuperDork
7/18/12 10:54 a.m.

Following this. I just blew it by missing a remarkably clean looking (in CL pictures...) Midget for challenge money.

theenico
theenico New Reader
7/18/12 11:06 a.m.

And I thought this thread was going to be about some cool new club in the Phillipines.

Oh well, MG Midgets are pretty neat also.

NOHOME
NOHOME HalfDork
7/18/12 11:08 a.m.
bravenrace wrote: MG Midgets, that is. Whats the deal with these? My bro in law had one years ago, and I remember three things about it. One, it broke down all the time. Two, we pulled the engine by hand with a strap. Three, it was a total blast to drive. There are about a dozen of them on CL right now in my area, and they are cheap. What do I need to know about them?

You need to know what you already said "They are a blast to drive".

If you swap in a Rotary or other modern engine, they are a very fast blast to drive. But that makes them expensive.

They break down a lot because they are old and most have not had enough maintenance to reflect the age. They are not inherently fragile.

Oh wait, the rear axles are kinda.

oldtin
oldtin SuperDork
7/18/12 11:09 a.m.

Spridgets - A-series engines up to 1974 - after 74 it's a 1500 triumph engine. Even when they broke, it's a fix it with a hammer and a screwdriver kind of car. Oh yeah, how do you feel about fixing rust issues? There's a few variations - round wheel arches vs square - early cars are square, so are rubber bumper cars. I think the round arches look better. edit - rubber bumper cars have a taller ride height - factory added sway bars to help on those.

25 choice challengers - 2 midgets on the list

Feedyurhed
Feedyurhed Dork
7/18/12 11:11 a.m.
theenico wrote: And I thought this thread was going to be about some cool new club in the Phillipines. Oh well, MG Midgets are pretty neat also.

I thought it was going to be about those 3/4 size dirt track thingies which I have always had a thing for. Either MG or dirt track........pretty cool.

N Sperlo
N Sperlo PowerDork
7/18/12 11:12 a.m.

ArthurDent
ArthurDent HalfDork
7/18/12 11:32 a.m.

The supply of cheap Midgets and Spitfires seems to have dried up around here in the last couple years.

fasted58
fasted58 UltraDork
7/18/12 11:40 a.m.

thought there was some new midget porn

nevermind

kreb
kreb SuperDork
7/18/12 11:46 a.m.
ArthurDent wrote: The supply of cheap Midgets and Spitfires seems to have dried up around here in the last couple years.

There are still tons around here (Northern California). What I'd like to do is to put a bugeye fiberglass front end on the standard midget body, which will mean that you actually have a trunk!

RossD
RossD UltraDork
7/18/12 11:47 a.m.

Calling Nocones! I'll post a teaser picture:

Knurled
Knurled SuperDork
7/18/12 11:54 a.m.

Rust, rust, and more rust.

If there's no body line separating the rocker from the rest of the car, it's all Bondo down there.

Basil Exposition
Basil Exposition Reader
7/18/12 11:56 a.m.

I vintage race a Midget. Talk about grassroots-- cheapest vintage ride you can get (except maybe Formula V's). Lots of parts availability, including gofast stuff. Easy to work on, except if you are tall and have to fold yourself in half to reach the engine.

I paid $300 for my car as a derelict and built it into a racer, which was probably the more expensive way to do it. I see former SCCA cars for around $5k pretty often, although it would take about 3 times that to build one. Vintage racecars tend to be a bit more expensive to buy, though aren't as highly prepped. I guess that's because they are typically more nicely finished and you need all the original steel panels and suspension to qualify.

Lots available out there. I wouldn't pay any more than $500 for a non-runner and maybe a few thousand for a solid, running car. The best one in the world would struggle to get to five digits. Many parts cars are available, though there is a dearth of good RF fenders.

I'd avoid the rubber bumper 1500 versions (post-1974). The motor isn't as tunable or as reliable. It always had overheating issues, etc., etc. The 1275 has a lot more tuning history and ability. Besides, if you want to vintage race, the cutoff is usually 1972 and the 1500's won't qualify.

ransom
ransom SuperDork
7/18/12 11:59 a.m.

How 'bout height? It's been years since I got a ride in one, and I mostly remember it being awkward getting in because I had to thread my boots lengthwise between the door opening and seat...

I heard an anecdote recently about someone about the same height as me (6') but with a remarkably long torso owning one and driving it comfortably. Does that mean there's no legroom?

Raze
Raze SuperDork
7/18/12 11:59 a.m.

...so why don't you toss one?

a Midget was on my short list when I bought the Fiat, even nice ones cost nothing: http://atlanta.craigslist.org/nat/cto/3135745715.html I should have bought one, I still might, sigh....

motomoron
motomoron Dork
7/18/12 12:08 p.m.

Is it wrong to hotlink my own car from GRM Reader's Rides?

Teh E36 M3
Teh E36 M3 Dork
7/18/12 12:13 p.m.

I've got one. Brian Kraus has a (very fast) rotary one. Mine has a 4age, and it's faster than it needs to be. Doing it again, I'd probably build a good, stock 1275 and supercharge it. Rather than build a monster that will never be perfect. They're easy to fix, fun to drive, and have all the parts you could ever want a click of the mouse away.

bravenrace
bravenrace PowerDork
7/18/12 1:37 p.m.
Raze wrote: ...so why don't you toss one? a Midget was on my short list when I bought the Fiat, even nice ones cost nothing: http://atlanta.craigslist.org/nat/cto/3135745715.html I should have bought one, I still might, sigh....

Exactly the kind of car that lead me to post this.

ransom
ransom SuperDork
7/18/12 1:43 p.m.
motomoron wrote: Is it wrong to hotlink my own car from GRM Reader's Rides?

Only when you attempt to hotlink the page instead of the image...

I think perhaps you meant this:

... and that can't be wrong...

mmosbey
mmosbey Reader
7/18/12 1:43 p.m.

Sounds like you're not having trouble anyway, but around here, I've often seen Midgets listed on CL as MGBs.

Chris_V
Chris_V UltraDork
7/18/12 2:06 p.m.

My old square fender one:

Love these little cars. Mine had the 1275 and was pretty stout. Rust is an issue, as was mentioned, and the round rear fenderwell cars tend to crack above the wheelwell opening, or at least I heard that years ago (which is why I was told that they went back to the square wheelwells). More roomy that they look to start with, but still tight. And damn they are small out on the road. But that makes them feel much faster than they are.

noddaz
noddaz Reader
7/18/12 2:13 p.m.

Hmmm... I wonder if a Ford 2300 would fit in there...

1988RedT2
1988RedT2 UltraDork
7/18/12 2:22 p.m.

Your idea of cheap must be different from my idea of cheap. There's a '76 for $10k, a '62 for $9k, a '79 for $3.5k and a '66 for $3.8k. None of them look like screaming deals to me.

However, there is this sexy Italian number....http://richmond.craigslist.org/cto/3140617500.html

pinchvalve
pinchvalve UltimaDork
7/18/12 2:27 p.m.

Quite a few on Pittsburgh CL, including this one:

bravenrace
bravenrace PowerDork
7/18/12 2:27 p.m.

In reply to 1988RedT2:

No, my idea of cheap is pretty close to yours. There's a bunch of under $4500 cars fairly close to me. That sexy italian is tempting, though.

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