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Re: Mixed thoughts here on my clutch......

To: "MG List" <>
Subject: Re: Mixed thoughts here on my clutch......
From: Max Heim <>
Date: Mon, 24 May 1999 12:40:51 -0700
While I would concur with others that holding the car on hills with the 
clutch is a bad habit (why not use the brake? it's what it's there for), 
I agree with you that any problems that it caused would first manifest as 
premature clutch disc wear. I have heard of other cases where the 
throwout bearing prematurely failed, for no apparent reason. The quality 
of the replacement parts is probably part of it -- I don't think anyone 
is getting 25 years on their second clutch! Then you add in the 
cumulative wear on all the parts, throwing  off the alignment and 

I think I would carefully check to see that the bearing was completely 
releasing when the pedal was at the bottom end of its travel. The 
condition of the master and slave cylinders, and the flexible hose, are 
factors in this, as well as the wear on the push rod and pivot bolt that 
someone else mentioned. The last time I had the engine out of my car (for 
other work), I replaced the clutch disc, pressure plate and throwout 
bearing (even though they had only about 15K miles), the slave cylinder, 
flex hose and push rod, the pivot bolt, and the bushing. This is probably 
the proper approach to a 27-year-old vehicle.

I don't know how your mechanic ascertained that the throwout bearing was 
shot; not that I'm disagreeing, but I assume you haven't pulled the 
engine yet. It is possible that upon teardown some clue will reveal 
itself as to the source of the problem. Right now I'd have to think that 
excessive bearing wear without clutch disc wear indicates constant, light 
contact. This could either be caused by light left foot pressure on the 
clutch pedal (as your mechanic thinks), or by the failure of the throwout 
bearing to release completely (possibly due to weak hydraulics or worn 

Good luck

Brent Beermann had this to say:

>Ok, last week I posted a message about my clutch throw out bearing.  I
>recieved responses at both ends of the spectrum.  Some told me how terrible
>it is to drive holding your foot up in front of the clutch (not putting
>pressure on it and disengaging it) and also slipping the clutch on hills.
>They said that would make it go very quickly.  Others told me that they had
>been told the same thing by the shop, that the throw out bearing went
>because of riding the clutch.  They also told me to drive the car as I
>wished making sure that certain key clutch components were ok.  I've
>certainly got mixed thoughts here on this.  I mean, I would figure that the
>clutch disc would go before the Carbon bearing would unless something else
>was worn or adjusted improperly.  Can somebody please help me out here,
>because I'm not too thrilled about paying the shop another $800 to put a new
>clutch in after I just paid them to do it a year ago.  It just doesn't make
>sense to me.
>Brent Beermann
>Facilities & Technical Support Specialist
>Unix Systems Managers, Inc.
>SkyPager: PIN 9309123 or


Max Heim
'66 MGB GHN3L76149
Runs great, 
looks particularly bad since some SUV clown backed into it.
If you're near Mountain View, CA,
it's the red one with the silver bootlid.

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