|MGB suspension upgrades|
|Thursday, 17 May 2012 00:00|
There is no single course of suspension upgrades that will work for everyone, but is there at least a basic route map that owners should follow through the many options on offer? That is the question we put to John Southall and David Sculthorpe at MGOC Spares.
Pictures courtesy of MGOC Spares
Last issue, we reported on a test drive in the MGBs of John Southall and David Sculthorpe. We’d met the pair on a visit to the MGOC HQ in Swavesey, and wanted to try out the club’s new Evolution3 front suspension. We were very impressed with the ride it gave, and while chatting afterwards, the subject arose of upgrading the MGB’s suspension in general. What we wanted to know was whether there was a logical approach to take, one that allowed you to upgrade as and when you had money to spare rather than having to bite the bullet and do everything a once. The critical points for any such approach to succeed were that each step would give you the maximum benefit for the amount of money spent, and that you wouldn’t waste your hard earned cash by having to ditch the bits you’d just bought for step one in order to take step two.
This provoked a highly informative discussion with David, John and Martin Bentley which went to prove one thing if nothing else – there is no simple answer to our question. The problem is that one modification plays off against another, that changes beyond the suspension will have an impact on what is needed there. Added to this, people can have very different goals and different needs, so what will be right for one owner or one car will not automatically be ideal for another.
However, that does not mean that we could not come up with some basic guidelines which you can use as a starting point for your own plan. The key thing is that you must have a particular goal in mind and develop a strategy for reaching it, rather than throw money haphazardly at the car. And oddly enough, that starts not with modifications at all, but with ensuring that whatever is currently on your car is in good condition. That means, for example, checking that your kingpins are not worn, that they are properly greased and turning freely, and that all springs, dampers and bushes are sound. And this is where having a clear goal is vital; there is no point replacing worn lever arm dampers one month, then ditching them in favour of telescopics the next. That is why your initial assessment may well suggest a different order of steps to the ones we propose here. However, if there are no immediate areas requiring remedial attention, we would suggest starting off cheaply, with the suspension bushes.
To read more of this feature see the June 2012 issue of MG Enthusiast - available here