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Re: MG Midget clutch

Subject: Re: MG Midget clutch
From: (Denise Thorpe)
Date: Fri, 5 Apr 96 10:52:01 PST

>   I bought a 1970 MG Midget three months ago. Previous owner said all it 
> was a new clutch to run.  The 
> previous owners bought the new clutch for the car.  I installed the new
> clutch,pressure plate, and throw out bearing.
> I bleed the system about a dozen times. Then I pushed the clutch in and had
> someone push the car to see if the clutch 
> would release or not, it did not release(note: car was not running).  So I
> bleed the system again ,and tried pushing the car again.  still did not work.
> I saw on the list about the slave cylinder rod had to be 3" long .  Well my
> slave cylinder rod is 3" long.  could someone give me anymore advice.  My wife
> loves the car but she would love it alot more if we could get it to drive.
> Please get me out of the doghouse with my wife. The engine is a 1275.  Thanks
> for any advice!!!!!

Weekend before last, I replaced the clutch master and slave cylinders in my 
B.  There had been a lot of discussion on the list just before this about 
how hard it is to bleed a clutch and I didn't remember it being that bad, 
but my last experience was 15 years ago.

Years ago, I owned a '79 Spitfire and when I replaced the master cylinder, 
I let the car sit for half a day and then pumped the pedal a couple of times 
and the clutch was bled, but the clutch line in a Spit is strictly vertical.

After the new cylinders were in the B, I bled the clutch at the slave cylinder 
with my boyfriend working the pedal.  This obviously wasn't doing any good.  
Then we bled at the connection to the master cylinder.  This actually caused 
the actuating rod down at the clutch to move and the clutch could then be 
pumped up so that the car could be shifted, but at a certain point, it became 
obvious that no amount of bleeding at this location was going to get all the 
air out of the system.  I was out of clutch bleeding time and I had to drive 
the car to work, so I drove it pumping furiously on the clutch pedal every 
time I needed to shift.  After three days of this, the clutch no longer 
needed to be pumped up--it had bled itself.  I'm not sure if I'm recommending 
this as a procedure to be followed because pumping up the clutch for every 
shift is tricky.  I'm a trained professional and can do this while eating a 
carne asada burrito.

Someone (Motorhead?) suggested pushing the slave cylinder rod into the slave 
cylinder after the system had been bled as much as possible.  Based on the 
geometry of the system, this should work, but I don't know how difficult this 
is because I've never done it.  If I were going to do it, I'd use a big pair 
of water pump pliers to push the end of the rod into the slave cylinder 
housing with the cap off of the master cylinder.

Good luck!

Denise Thorpe

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