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Maestro, please. - Bright Lights


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you are mistaken about the larger radiator- they got smaller, the new one you got is the same size as was fitted to my 1984 1.3 bASe

the fan switch retainer was same as your original one though

the fan switch should come on at 101℃  and go off at 92℃ if memory serves me well

88 is thermostat opening

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the fan switch does not put the light on

the temp on your car did not get remotely close to overheating!

i don't think you let the temp go high enough for fan to need to be on ergo switch didn't (overheating is in the orange shaded bit)

gauge should sit one mark below or on center of gauge and rise to about 2 marks above before the fan comes out to play

your "new" rad cap is missing a seal where the old one was blue

this is based on a  maestro1.3 base, 1.6 base montego, mg maestro 2.0 EFi & montego 2.0 GSi

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It's difficult to record absolutely everything that happens as it happens so as for the system not getting hot enough for the fan to come on, it absolutely did.  I had the gauge with the needle almost at the far right of the gauge and still no fan.  I had it hot enough you could hear the coolant boiling.  It was plenty hot enough for the fan to come on, I just didn't fiddle about with the camera to record it since, you know, the car was overheating and that was bad.

The old cap didn't seal, the new one does.  The new one is therefore better even if it's not correct.

You're correct, fan switch doesn't do anything with the temp gauge.  Trying to explain what's going on while it's going on and remember what I said for the write up and the video... I get muddled.  Fan switch only operates the fan, when it gets to X temperature bimetallic switch closes, fan comes on.  When it gets to X temperature bimetallic switch opens, fan goes off.  Unfortunately, mine is having the issue that the switch has no bearing on what the fan is doing because the electrical connection is being broken before it gets to the switch.  So all I can do is see stuff is getting too hot and that the fan isn't coming on and try and find the issue.

This was a messy video and write up in all honesty.  It was a difficult one to record and the images don't show the whole story.  You'll just have to take my word for it that the switches were duff, the car did get plenty hot enough, and the problem with the fan unreliability is with the wiring.  Having driven the car in stop-start traffic (something I don't have the means to record just yet) proved that the car could easily get too hot for the fan to come on, and that the fan would go on and off totally randomly, we're talking anything from a staccato burst of on-off, to refusing to come on, to coming on as normal and going off when the temperature dropped as normal.  There's definitely an issue in the connectivity between switch and wiring.

Anyway.  Bodge employed for now and that's just fine.  I'm not currently driving the car anyway because I haven't got welding gas to finish the bodywork off and get it in for an MoT.  I have too much shit to do.

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if you are going to use the "bodge" just keep the wire in door pocket and deploy as needed you'll prolly find just driving normal won't have it get too hot whereas driving with fan on will keep it too cool for most of the time

try looking at the temp thermistor in head fro strange gauge/light behavior

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  • vulgalour changed the title to Maestro, please. - Bonnet and Jets
  • 5 weeks later...

In the most recent Maestro video, I fixed a couple of issues.  The first was the bonnet.


This corner is the worst bit.  After I'd been driving the car for a while, rust started to appear and a few bits of filler dropped off.  The alignment is pretty poor on this corner too.  I know it's had a minor bump on this corner and it looks like the edge of the bonnet got shoved in.  Panel beating on the wing this corner suggests that got damaged, and a home made bracket on the headlight certainly reinforces the suspicion.  Damage doesn't run too deep, seems to be entirely superficial, so it doesn't really worry me.  You can see from the side that it's also pushed the bonnet back along its length so it has an odd shape, being a bit too short and much to curved.  The wing is also distorted along its length, curving away from the bonnet. The metal on the Maestro is very thin so it deforms really easily, it doesn't take a lot to put damage like this into a panel.



Not to worry, it's just four bolts to undo and unplugging the hose from the washer jets.


Don't forget to put a couple of squares of cardboard under the rear corners of the bonnet when you're doing this on your own, it'll save your paint.


Incredibly light panel considering it's all steel, and lifts away easily.  Just small enough to not be cumbersome, and quick enough to remove that if I ever did need full access to the engine it's easily got.


The washer jets need a little press from a screwdriver on one side of the stalk on the underside of the bonnet and they come out.  The ones on my old bonnet are in good shape, the new one not so much, so a swap was deemed suitable.  To fit, simply push them into the hole.  They're not brilliant, being just single jet types, and I could upgrade to Citroen misters, but they'll do just fine for the foreseeable.


New bonnet drops in the hole well enough.  It's got its own problems, namely a really shallow dent right in the middle from storage (before Peter or I got it) but is overall in much better condition.  It also has a better curve on the front edge, something I didn't notice had been flattened out a bit on the old bonnet until it was removed.  It's a slightly different red which is much more apparent on camera, in person it's close enough you don't notice it.  This Maestro is Targa Red, the spare panels are off a car that was one of the two Flame Reds.  It does highlight how wrong the shape of the drivers side wing is with a straight bonnet fitted.


That done, attention could turn to the rear washer jet.  The front still worked just fine, a little fine adjustment to get them squirting to the right spot and nothing else required.  The rear jet hadn't worked when I got the car, the motor would run and you could see fluid in the line, but nothing at the back. Removed the one-way valve to check for flow and promptly broke it.  Also found that there was no flow in either direction through the one-way valve, so that was our main culprit.  Ordered a replacement and just plugged the washer line back onto the motor until it arrived.


I wasn't getting any washer fluid in the car or the headlining, which is good.  The washer line for the rear goes through the bulkhead and up into the roof, presumably up the driver's side A pillar, and then pops out at the back near the tailgate hinge.


It then goes into the tailgate, down the driver's side, and connects to the wiper motor mechanism to get to the washer jet on the tailgate.  I'm not sure my rear washer jet is proper, it's made of brass and looks decidedly home made.


Now I had a clear line, I was only getting the barest dribble out of the washer jet so I decided to remove it to see if it was blocked.  Unscrew the jet portion, and then the square bit that's screwed into the wiper arm boss.  I don't remember what the other Maestros I had were equipped with, I'm sure it wasn't this.  Anyway, it was pretty obvious the jet was blocked once it was removed.


Since I was getting fluid all the way to the back of the car I thought rather than pulling the hose out and all the work that entailed, I'd see if the motor was strong enough to just clear whatever blockages might be in the line.  Happily, after an initial splutter, it did just that and I now had excellent flow.


I also had a whole lot of black gunky stuff on the floor that had been spat out of the line. and more that came out of the brass jet parts in the ultrasonic cleaner.



Reassembled everything with just a hint of WD40 which I've found useful for preventing cross threading of brass pieces, and we now had a fully functioning rear wash wipe set up.



A little while later, the new non-return valve arrived, much slimmer than the old one, and I fitted that too.  Now the line stays primed and I don't have the wiper sweeping the rear screen without water so I shouldn't prematurely destroy blades or scratch the rear screen.


Nice easy wins.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • vulgalour changed the title to Maestro, please. - Winga Dinga
  • 4 weeks later...

As part of the massive parts haul I got from another Maestro enthusiast, I ended up with a much better wing than the one on the car, in a slightly different shade of red.  Removing and refitting Maestro wings is pretty easy, as it goes, so here is how that goes.  First, unbolt all the bolts along the top wing rail.

Then open the front door and fiddly about where the A pillar meets the wing until you can get a tool of some sort on the bolt crammed in there, once loose undo it by hand so you stand a chance of getting bolt and tool out of the gap without having to remove the door.

Undo the bolt holding the wing to the sill, which in this instance came undone surprisingly easily and without drama.

Then remove the front indicator which you do by unplugging the bulb holder and then pulling on that metal loop which is the retaining spring.  The whole unit will then fall out so make sure you're ready to catch it.

Then you can either unbolt the bumper corner from the wing or, because there's enough wiggle room with everything, pull the cap off the bumper.  It's a different approach for plastic bumper cars.

Then undo the three bolts holding the wing to the front valance, the top one isn't easy to see and you pretty much have to undo it blind.

Finally, disconnect the side repeater and you're away.  I learned since recording the video that the side repeater is supposed to have a tab you push in that frees the lens from the wing, mine was dirt-welded in place so I opted to disconnect the bulb holder from the lens instead as that was easier in this instance.

With the wing off, you can see where the bolts for the front valance go a lot easier.  There's been some sort of damage repair on this corner, nothing too serious since it's only affected the squishier bits of the panels rather than the structural stuff lower down, so I'm not concerned about any of it.

There's an interesting repair to the inner wing to make it the correct shape.  I'm actually sort of impressed by this.  In an ideal world I'd have a section of Maestro to replace this bit with, it looks like they couldn't quite get the original shape back and just sort of made the best of what they'd got and honestly, everything still lines up reasonably well with the outer panels on so again, not something I'm worrying about.

The paint on the wing I'd removed was a bit odd on the leading corner, I couldn't really figure it out with it on the car beyond being able to see it had definitely had some work done.  Once removed from the car, what had been done was much clearer and, frankly, pretty impressive.  Perhaps for the person who did this getting a replacement wing just wasn't that easy or cost effective so this is the route they took instead.  More on this later.

The replacement wing is in much better condition, very minimal paint damage, and no dents or rust problems.  It should also tell me how straight things really are since it's the shape it should be.

The only thing of note that jumped out on fitting the wing was the edge of the valance being deformed.  I did suspect it would be, so I need to spend a bit of time gently massaging this back to the correct profiles.  The metal on the Maestro is very thin, as cars of this era tend to be, so it's really easy to get things out of shape and back into shape.

The black trim line is different too, though the panel gap is reasonable enough considering the tab on the bottom of this wing is missing.  I did trim the tab off the other wing and then put it Somewhere Safe so of course I've not been able to find it to put it back on.  It's not vital, apparently the MG Maestros don't have this tab because of the bodykit and I've not noticed any issues with this wing flapping about or catching the door.


Happily, the fitment of the wing is pretty good.  It aligns with the bonnet much better and while there's certainly some adjustment to be had to make things better still, it's good enough for what this car is and better than it was, so I'm happy with that.  I don't even mind the red being slightly wrong, the paint on this car isn't fantastic so it just sort of blends in with the survivor look of the whole thing.

That wing then.  My working theory based on the damage seen is that something hit the front corner of the car quite high up, squashing the wing and bonnet down, and breaking the headlight bracket (you can see the repair to it in one of the pictures above). Perhaps a lorry reversed into the car or something like that, the damage that's been repaired wouldn't really take a lot of force to cause. Instead of buying a new wing, whoever repaired this (and it looks to be an old repair) spent the time to chop out the whole front upper corner of the wing and weld in a new piece.  They also spent the time to beat out the surrounding metal work as best they could and even cut new slots for the indicator unit guides to go into to keep everything aligned.  In addition to the work on the wing, there's a lot of crude panel beating on the inner wing at the upper corner and that unusual bolted-and-welded bridge repair.  It's all quite impressive really, it's an awful lot of time to effect a repair like this and whoever did it must have really liked the car to invest the effort.



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  • 3 weeks later...

I am struggling with motivation lately, and it being summer.  I hate the summer.  Anyway, had a crack at replacing the handbrake cables today since there's damage to the outer sheath on both sides at the back and I've got spares.  Drum came apart nicely and the insides look lovely and clean with no issues, hoorah!  Unfortunately I just couldn't dismantle the handbrake cables, I don't have the tools suitable for the job and kind of just gave up.  I'm going to leave the spare parts in the car and instruct the garage doing the MoT to replace them if needed for a pass.

That leaves me with one tiny spot of welding in the boot that probably isn't even an MoT issue, and the little bottom tab on the front wing that definitely isn't an MoT issue, and it can be booked in.  Just need to work up the motivation to haul out the welder. As far as I know there's nothing else of concern on the car and many of the things that might have been a problem have all been addressed so it should go straight through.  It's surprising how much work it's needed since its last MoT, I guess that's what happens when you start getting fussy about things being right.

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I know that now, I didn't know that when recording.  The side repeater had welded itself to the wing with dirt too so doing it the way I did was actually easiest.


Rust busting mission today failed.  A tiny filler worm fell off at the front when tapping the new tab for the bottom of the wing into place.  Turns out there's some little perforations in the leading edge of the sill I'd not seen due to underseal so I need to clean up and repair that.  The holes are barely anything and all localised to a tiny patch but I can't leave that undone now I've seen it.  I'll also have to check the passenger side since it's probably the same.  Well hidden bit of rot that one, mostly because it's normally covered up with the wing and the arch liner and I only saw it because I was repairing the wing bottom.

The bit of rust in the under-boot around the rear exhaust hanger has proved impossible to deal with in the conventional way because my grinder physically won't fit where I need it to so that I can cut the rust out.  I'm going to have to get creative with wire wheels and files to deal with that one.  It's probably not an MoT failure, I just want it sorted now I know about it.  I also learned I need some more flap wheels and other consumables and right now I'm flat broke.  It's a combination of factors but basically I'm out of spare cash until work picks up again, which in the current financial climate it might not for quite some time, which isn't ideal.

On the plus side, the Maestro appears to have a stainless steel exhaust.  I didn't know this because it's filthy, so hadn't seen it until I was under the car today.  It might explain why it sounds throatier than my friend's very similar pristine Maestro. That's saved me a bob or two, which is nice.

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Pictures help.  I'll be putting a video together when I've finished all the stuff I need to do, so in the meantime here's this.  I reckon I'm going to have a go at cleaning all the muck off the exhaust, if it really is stainless steel (from the downpipe all the way back at that) then that definitely improves resale value.



The bit of rust at the leading edge of the sill was very well hidden and should be very easy to correct.  It's covered up completely so the shape doesn't need to be accurate, just good enough.


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  • 2 weeks later...
  • vulgalour changed the title to Maestro, please. - The Low Down (grille)
  • 1 month later...

To celebrate failing the MoT and then passing the MoT, I felt I could actually commit to the next Safety Dad Tat video with all the accessories I've been acquiring.  First, I just needed to test a little something out...


Yeah.  That's just the right amount of ridiculous and tasteless for what I'm doing here.

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1 hour ago, vulgalour said:

To celebrate failing the MoT and then passing the MoT, I felt I could actually commit to the next Safety Dad Tat video with all the accessories I've been acquiring.  First, I just needed to test a little something out...


Yeah.  That's just the right amount of ridiculous and tasteless for what I'm doing here.


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  • vulgalour changed the title to Maestro, please. - Bright Lights

they are replacement lights the originals would have been marked up as Lucas

Lucas Homofocal headlights is what they are- wide angle & long range in one unit

the driver side one looks like it should have a plastic cover not a rubber one- which is where the didelight wiring is routed iirc

they were also used on the leyland roadrunner

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