At 11:47 AM 12/4/2000 -0500, Larry Cogan wrote:
>I have a 59 MGA with the original 1500 engine. .... In looking at the
Vicky Britt and Moss catalogs I see two diff dipstick versions. A straight
stick for earlier cars and a stick with two 45 degree bends for later cars.
.... I also note that the catalogs show the straight stick without any
"stop lug" to set the depth of the stick into the sump. Not so concerned
about originality as much as having a properly calibrated dipstick.
Except for the double bend in the top of the later model, the two dipsticks
are functionally identical from the bend down, and neither one has a collar
stop. There is a small indentation (about one inch across) in the bottom
corner of the oil pan directly under the dipstisk. The dipstick bottoms
out in the oil pan with a nice metalic clunk. The MIN mark is 1-11/16
inchs from the bottom end of the stick. The MAX mark is 2-1/16 inches from
the bottom of the stick. Nothing else matters, except for the appearance
and the top seal. The MGA seals the top of the dipstick tube with a LARGE
(much larger than necessary) rubber boot that is a tight fit on the stick.
You put the boot part way up on the stick, and then push the stick into
place until it hits the bottom of the pan. In the process the boot lands
on top of the tube and is pushed up the stick to exactly the right
position. Next time you put the stick back into the engine the boot just
touches the top of the tube at the same time that the stick hits the bottom
of the pan.
>Does it make any difference or should I be obsessing about more important
things (like that strange noise between 2400 and 3100 rpm)?
Incorrect oil level makes a HUGE difference. I personally have butchered
the rod bearings on a nearly new engine by autocrossing it when one quart
low on oil, as the oil pressure disappeared in a hard turn. I know someone
who did a couple of extra engine overhauls because of excessive oil
consumption and a terrific amount of smoking and blowing of oil out the
tailpipe and out the tappet cover draft tube before discovering the wrong
dipstick had the oil level at least a quart too high. I'm still thinking
the last two overhauls were unnecessary and a waste of money, caused only
by ignorance of the wrong dipstick.
>I realize that I could simply drain the oil, put in the specified amount
and "recalibrate" the wad of tape to that level, but that seems quite
Or just file new marks on the dipstick in the appropriate locations, as
1958 MGA with an attitude