Category Archives: Members’ Cars and Photos

’78 MGB Conversion of Gene Lillie

This is the 1978 MGB chrome bumper conversion of Gene Lillie. He is almost complete on his 9 ½ year restoration program. He kept the frame and most of the body parts. All parts were ordered from on line catalog sales locations, no parts were from old cars found lying around. When replacing the exhaust system, he had a muffler made that fits in the wheel well to avoid dragging on the ground. The interior has been almost completely replaced, only the dashboard remains from when he first bought it. He enjoys showing it at local car shows and he often gets stopped by people to tell me how well the car looks.

'78 B Conversion of Gene Lillie '78 B Conversion of Gene Lillie '78 B Conversion of Gene Lillie

’74 Midget of Tom & Lynette Hummel

'74 Midget of Tom & Lynette Hummel '74 Midget of Tom & Lynette Hummel Tom and Lynette Hummel became owners of their MG by chance. Tom was visiting his mother when he saw a small red convertible drive by. As he was leaving, he saw the car again. He drove by it slowly and saw a for sale sign on the front seat.

They then took the car for a test drive. The owner gave them a list of problems but they did not matter as they were in love with it already. The next day they bought the car. The owner had the 1974 Midget for five years while she lived down the street from his mom. He had never seen it before that day. The photos show Lynette in the Midget on the day they bought it and the other one is Tom washing the car.

’73 B of David Perkins

The December 2009 Queen B is the 1973 B of David Perkins: Here is his story:

Here are some pictures of my newly restored (in 2009) 1973 MGB. The frame, most body trim, chrome bumpers, and engine are original. The interior is new, as are the wire wheels, and the convertible top. The British Racing Green paint job is also new, as well as all of the front/rear light lenses. It runs beautifully at about 87,000 miles, and never needed any major mechanical work. I replaced the wiring. I’ve owned it since 2005. Nearly all of the restoration and paint work was done by Mods for Rods in Fountain Hills, Arizona.

'73 B of David Perkins '73 B of David Perkins

1977 B of L. Gene Enke

The latest issue of the Octagon’s Queen B is the 1977 B of L. Gene Enke. Here is the story:

Our 1977 red Queen B is a “favored toy” which we have owned since 1979. She traveled with us well through the years including holidays on the gulf coast and the east coast. With 90,000 miles and no mechanical issues (all original), she is now relegated to local trips. The top is put down is April and back up in October. She has enjoyed a total body restoration several years ago and is in “show condition”. The car attracts its share of attention and is widely recognized in our area. British Leyland would be proud of its product.

'77 B of L. Gene Enke

'77 B of L. Gene Enke

'79 B V8 of William Lane

'79 B V8 of William Lane

’79 B V8 of William Lane

This issue’s Queen B is the ’79 B V-8 of William Lane. Here is the story:

This is my “King B”. It has a 5.0 liter Ford V-8, Borg-Warner 5 speed transmission and narrowed 8″ Ford rear end. All work done by owner. It is best described as G.L.H. (goes like hell!).

'79 B V8 of William Lane
'79 B V8 of William Lane


79bv8williamlanev8engine

'79 B of Larry Youngblood

The March 2009 issue’s Queen B is the ’79 B of Larry Youngblood. Here is his story:

About six years ago, a former high school welding student of mine, called me on the phone and asked if I still had my Midget and if I was interested in another MG. Of course, I had to go look. Drove down to the small town where he lived and there it was outside on the driveway, covered in a ratty blue tarp. Pulled it back and what I saw was rough. Interior basically gone, no top, engine froze up, sill and fenders rusted but other than the top, it was all there. He wanted $700, I offered $500. At the time I had no way of having the car delivered to me so I offered him $20 to trailer it to the school where I work.

Once at the school (end of year), I had my few remaining students (all the rest were out co-oping) start tearing it down. Pulled the engine, removed the head and discovered that the #3 piston was “welded” to the cylinder wall. After removing the crank and other pistons and rods, we took a 2X4 and an engineers hammer to the #3 piston and finally popped it out. We then gave the engine to the Engine Rebuild Class for renewing. Continued stripping the car.

Finally was able to move the car to my home garage and got it up on stands. I then removed the rusty sills, inner panel and castle rail. Welded in all new metal and of course, new dog legs.

Front fenders were gone, so had to find new/used ones. Found a good used fender in Arizona and the other was a perfect NOS item that I got from Matthews Parts in Birmingham, Alabama.

Had some minor rust issues at various places on the floor and footwells. A few patches and good to go.

In the meantime, I was busy ordering new parts, interior components, etc. Got to know the UPS man very well!

After all the welding work was done, I started to do the body work but after working off and on for five years, I thought it might be good to let the Autobody Class at the vocational school work on it. Took them nearly the entire school year to finish the car but they did get it finished and I trailered it home for final assembly. The original color of the car was Pageant Blue. My wife picked the new color of ’02 Ford Mustang Mineral Gray.

As I was assembling the car, I found several flaws in the paint but I wanted a “driver” so I am not too concerned. Overall, I was very happy with the work they did.

The engine rebuild came out nice and has been running for the last couple of years with no problems.

In 2007, I took the car to its first two car shows and a lot of folks really liked the color and various little details that I have made such as the Fiero seats, wood cup holder, Bimimi top/wind blocker combination.

I also own a ’75 MG Midget that I purchased new when I was about 22 years old. The MGB was built to use as a “fair weather” daily driver as it has a bit more room for my old bones and fat belly. In the summer, it gets driven most every day and even in the winter on mild days.

'79 B of Larry Youngblood

'79 B of Larry Youngblood

'79 B of Larry Youngblood '79 B of Larry Youngblood

'70 B of Jeff Wergeles

The December 2008 Queen B is the ’70 B of Jeff Wergeles. Here is the story:

I purchased this car in July 1974 with 21,000 miles on the odometer. It was Pale Primrose. It was repainted and given a new interior in 1987. Now, 34 years later, the car has 108,000 miles on the odometer and is still in my garage. It’s driven regularly.

'70 B of Jeff Wergeles

'70 B of Jeff Wergeles

'70 B of Jeff Wergeles
'70 B of Jeff Wergeles

'79 B of Donald Hutchens

The October 2008 Octagon Queen B is the ’79 B of Donald Hutchens. Here is his story:

'79 B of Donald Hutchens My love affair with MGs dates back to the late ’50s and early ’60s with a ’58 MGA and high school days. Quite a story, which also includes a ’63 MG Midget and later my son’s first car, a red ’77 MG Midget in 1984.

Now fast forward to 2007 being married for 42 years to my wonderful and understanding wife and with our kids out of college and on their own, I realized I had not found or owned the car I always wanted, a MGB roadster. Now the story of my find and purchase of a red 1979 MGB.

It is late summer of 2007 that I am reading our local newspaper car ads, which I usually do on a daily basis and this ad appears:

MGB 1979
Runs good
Standard Trans.
xxxx.xx
Call xxx-xxx-xxxx

I see this ad and read it daily for approximately 2 weeks, so on a pretty sunny Sunday afternoon I told my son about this ad and we laughed but we agreed to call and see if this car was still available. To our surprise, it was, so we were able to set up a time that same afternoon to see this car. Another surprise was that the car was about 4 miles away, stored in a little building in a new housing development. From reading the ad and the price that was being asked, at best it could only be a project car. Maybe good for parts and not much! We arrived at our appointed time and met the owner at the gate of this gated development. We then go to the little storage building and raise the door. SURPRISE is an understatement as here sat a red MGB roadster with the top down, a little rusty and faded, surrounded by stacks of boxes so close you could not open the car doors. The owner stated that the top was good and a new battery had just been installed.

My son managed to climb into the little car and hit the starter and the roar of the four was music to my ears. With only 2″ of clearance of the garage door, the little red MGB was very carefully backed out of the building. Now we could inspect what we had found. First was the current year license tag and the car was last out for a trip to the beach on July 4th as told by the owner. The owner also told what brand and weight of motor oil that was used and that the original owner’s manual was in the glove compartment. By now the roar of the four was sweet, sweet music. Our inspection was really getting serious as we were under the hood, under the car, in the trunk, under the mats, under the door and in the battery area. We were looking for rust and did not find any. We raised the top and the top was in good condition as the owner had said. The tires were in excellent condition and they were a matched set of Michelins with almost new tread. We found in the trunk an excellent spare tire mounted on an original MG wheel ready to go. Also folded neatly was a tonneau cover and top cover and all original tools and jack all in excellent condition.

Now came the driving test and wow! Great handling, brakes good, straight stops, all lights working even the side lights, brake lights, turn signals, clock and also a nice radio set up. All gauges work, temperature gauge right on target, oil pressure right on line with owners manual when driving and when idling. The clutch and gears were as smooth as silk. One more check as the title does number match, motor body and VIN number, etc. Yes, I offered a price and the owner accepted as he is moving to Texas for a new job and does not have time to complete the restoration. The car had 101,402 miles on it and was owned 11 years by the previous owner.

The only thing done to the car by my son and me, was to wash, wax, vacuum the carpet, dust the seats and dash and drive it! Changes that I would like to make in the near future are to install a European type license tag and MGB original type wheels. I would also like to clean and detail under the hood.

This rare find is now a proud member of our family and is run almost daily, except on rainy days.

My son, seventeen year old grandson and 10 year old granddaughter say this little red MGB is not for sale and are waiting for the car to be passed down to them.

A rare treasure can still be found in 2007 or today. You just have to check them out!

'79 B of Donald Hutchens

'79 B of Donald Hutchens

'73 B of Art Isaacs

73 B of Art Isaacs
73 B of Art Isaacs

The August 2008 issue’s Queen B is the ’73 B of Art Isaacs of our technical staff. Here is his story:

I am the second owner of this car and bought it for $300 in 1990. It had fortunately been abandoned inside a garage, so rust was not as bad as it could have been. Though there was some minor collision damage to the front and rust along both sills, the car was basically complete and solid and much of the body remains original even now. The dealer emblem on the rear is from the original new car dealer sale. I took on a full rebuild and restoration that took about 3 years to complete. I still consider it a work in progress, as refinements and improvements are always being made. The Hong Kong and China plates are legit and owing to my working there, but just for show in the US. The NJ “QQ” tags are hidden beneath the HK ones. Though never intended as a show car, it is primarily driven for enjoyment, it has consistently garnered 1st and 2nd place in class honors at shows it is entered in. Even after these many years, it continues to be a source of much enjoyment, pride and entertainment.

Back View

The dealer emblem on the rear is from the original sale to an associates’ son when he was a student in Denver. The Hong Kong and China plates are real and owing to my working there and being an active member of the MG Car Club – Hong Kong (the HK club badge is set in the grille), but are just for show and generating interest in a sea of red MGB’s here in the US. The NJ “QQ” tags are hidden beneath the HK ones which are on removable slip plates.

Interior

The instrument panel and gauges are all original. I used a coverlay on top and sat hours with black silicon and a toothpick to repair cracks in the vertical face which, 18 years on, are still holding up with the repairs invisible. The steering wheel is a Grant Signature Classic. It is not available from any of the MG catalogs, but from most auto parts chains and the JEGS or JC Whitney catalogs. The MG logo horn button is home made from the plain kit piece, but all else is available for all MGB’s.

Engine in place and trimmed

I modified the Stellings & Hellings air cleaners from the HS application by drilling-out the threaded holes in the back plate so they can be fitted to the HIF carbs. I recently changed to a Pertronix electronic ignition and am very happy with the results.

'73 B of Art Isaacs

'73 B of Art Isaacs

'73 B of Art Isaacs

'73 B of Art Isaacs