Overdrive Manual Transmission

Price: - Item location: San Luis Obispo, California, United States
  • Condition: Used
  • Make: MG
  • Model: MGB
  • SubModel: RD
  • Type: Convertible
  • Year: 1977
  • Mileage: 140,000
  • Color: Blue
  • Engine size: 18V
  • Number of cylinders: 4
  • Power options: Cruise Control
  • Fuel: Gasoline
  • Transmission: Manual
  • Drive type: RWD
  • Interior color: Autumn Leaf
  • Drive side: Left-hand drive
  • Options: CD Player
  • Vehicle Title: Clear
  • Want to buy? Contact seller!

1977 MG MGB

Located in California. Ready to drive away.

1977 MGB Roadster; refitted with factory LH-TypeOVERDRIVE TRANSMISSION.

Purchased in 1995 by current owner.

Mileage since new: approximately 140,000.

Mileage since engine block overhaul: approximately 36,000.

Mileage since engine cylinder-head overhaul: approximately 46,000.

Mileage since suspension overhaul: approximately 16,700.

This car was sealed in a dry shipping container in rural interior San Luis Obispo County, California (a reletively low-humidity environment) for twelve years from 2005 into 2017 when it was re-licenced with Alaska registration and put back on the road, driven periodically and garaged in San Luis Obispo County when not driven by myself exclusively, the owner, when visiting the area from my Anchorage residence. It has never been outside of California during my ownership and I believe it was originally sold in California, possibly in San Luis Obispo, as there was a MG dealership present back then. The original blue California plates (2) are included for historical authenticity. While equipped with a Weber DGV carburetor and pre-1975 exhaust header, the California emissions-compliant Stromberg carburetor and duplex manifold are included, though the air pump may be missing, however, it was in need of replacing. The air-rail should be available, subject to confirmation. The original catalytic converter mounted dangerously right beneath the Stromberg carburetor, became ineffective as its internal components deteriorated; it is now a hollow shell. An alternative exhaust pipe customized to mate with the original duplex manifold, with the hollow original catalytic converter mounted as factory-designed with a functional catalytic converter mounted downstream under the floorboard is included, off-vehicle. California emissions rules, absurdly, require that the catalytic converter be visually compliant with the original design, even if it is non-functioning and a functioning one is mounted downstream in a safer location. This equipment has a conventional muffler and is in good condition.

Engine Details:

Always fueled with premium, never overheated/no boilover.

Odometer reset to indicate engine block mileage since rebuild; currently: 36,000+/-. More detail under the heading: Drivetrain (2004) > Speedometer serviced... .

Cylinder head rebuilt November 1997; 10,000 miles driven before engine block rebuilt.

Both the cylinder head and short-block assemblies were rebuilt by Alternative Performance, San Luis Obispo, California, a well-regarded and highly recommended automotive machine shop at the time, specializing in gasoline engine rebuilding.

Cylinder head work included:

Die-penetrant tested and resurfaced.

Hardened valve seats (for unleaded fuel), new exhaust valves, new guides and seals; re-surfaced.

Head was installed with all new head studs and nuts during the first reinstallation, reused when reassembled after block rebuild.

Oil and filter replaced at 3,000-mile maximum intervals, Castrol 20/50.

Oil consumption: remains nil to minimal, i.e., normal during 3,000 mile intervals.

Engine Block Rebuild, January 1999 included:

New Oil Pump.

New Water Pump.

New Timing sprockets and Double-Row Chain.

All New Bearings.

Block die-penetrant tested and resurfaced.

Replaced camshaft with a serviceable unit.

New Pistons.

Flywheel resurfaced, new starter ring gear installed.

All new cold-galvanized freeze plugs (brass not available).

Permatex Aviation Gasket Compound used where appropriate.

Copper head-gasket (new in both cases) and torqued to specification.

All new Engine Mounts.

Break-in procedure per Alternative Performance recommendation performed, including 2000 RPM first 20 minutes for camshaft break-in and pure (distilled) water coolant for head gasket seating first 500 miles.

4-row oil cooler and hoses (new) installed prior to the engine rebuild.

Radiator boiled at time of rebuild, cooling system always serviced with 50/50 glycol anddistilledwater. Fluid remains clean and oil-free. Hoses and belt in good condition.

A failed electric radiator fan was replaced with an aftermarket suction fan, augmented by the remaining stock fan.

Ignition System:

Crane Cams XR700 electronic advance, enhancing the original distributor assembly.

Intake system:

Weber DGV carburetor installed. Original Zenith Stromberg carburetor and combined intake-exhaust manifold are included off-vehicle.

Exhaust system:

Pre-1975 cast exhaust header, eliminating all problems with loosening exhaust pipe fasteners, etc.

Straight-to-Glasspack resonator/muffler, reasonably quiet, tight, no rust.

Fuel System:

Fuel tank has never leaked or had any problems; the fuel pump (and associated rubber hosing) was replaced with the original-model SU pump at some time between 2000 and 2004. Apparently, I failed to record this in the maintenance record. Other rubber fuel hoses are in good condition, all having been replaced at other times, as deemed needed.

Drivetrain (2004):

Stock Type LH Overdrive Transmission (used, unknown mileage) installed in July 2004 during suspension rebuild project. Input shaft seal and cover gasket renewed. Overdrive filter screen renewed and new overdrive control and backup light switches installed. It has performed as designed and with no problems; reduces engine speed by approximately 500 RPM in 3rd and 4th gear.

Clutch (heavy duty) installed during 1999 engine rebuild retained. All new high-grade fasteners, new clutch pivot lever bushing; clutch and components had about 19,300 miles accumulated since engine rebuild at time of suspension and transmission project.

Roller Bearing type throw-out bearing (i.e., not the standard carbon friction type) installed with clutch replacement during engine rebuild.

Rear axle bearings replaced and driveshaft tubes-to-differential housing re-welded by a shop contracted by British Sportscars, San Luis Obispo, California. Welds appear to remain intact.

Used serviceable propeller shaft (sized for OD transmission) with new U-joints installed; all new high-strength fasteners utilized.

Speedometer serviced and calibrated for OD transmission; odometer reset to indicate mileage since engine block rebuild. Odometer read approximately 94,000 miles at that time, presumably accurate since new in 1977. New speedometer cable.

Original 4-speed transmission is included if desired. It needs rebuilding; when shifting from second to third, there was a developing lack of synchronization.

Suspension Rebuild (2004):

All flexible buffers/bushings and mount pads replaced with premium "Prothane" components. Crucially, this includes the front axle assembly (front-end assembly) cross-member beam-to-chassis attachments. The cross-member was removed, disassembled, cleaned and repainted with zinc-rich primer and finished in black before reassembling with shocks, axles, brakes, steering gear, etc.

Refurbished (all 4) stock Armstrong shock absorbers installed.

Front and rear springs replaced with new 1" lower than stock.

Swaybar mounting bushings and links replaced.

New Tie-Rod Ends.

All wheel/axle bearings renewed.

Steering arm gaiters replaced.

Brakes: all rotors, drums, caliper-piston assemblies, drum brake piston assemblies, shoes and hydraulic flex-hoses renewed. Rubbing/chafing of brake drums (an MGB general design quirk) against backing plates is minimal and only during harsh maneuvering at higher speeds; much improved over condition prior to project commencement.

Rebound straps intact (rear axle), replaced twice since purchase in 1995.

New tires installed May 2017; 4 Toyo Extensa A/S 185-65-14. As a result of being a lower profile than the previous 185-70-14 set, the speedometer is off by 4-5 MPH. In hindsight, I should have kept the previous size for that reason and for probably better fuel mileage. They look good, though. The spare is original to the car; original jack and lug wrench kit.

Interior (the would-be next and final substantial project):

Original upholstery (Autumn Leaf), door and window seals and carpeting are due for replacement; driver's seat-cushion cover is deteriorated.

Robbins zippered rear-light hood (i.e., convertible top) was replaced in late 1996, and still in serviceable and waterproof condition despite neat and durable repairs following break-in when the vinyl fabric was neatly cut in two places in 1997 (it's not a good idea to lock the doors).

Dashboard surface veneer exhibits a crack on top, typical, in need of an overlay repair.

Passive-restraint shoulder harness seatbelts from Moss Motors newly installed in 2017.

Inexpensive AM-FM receiver and CD player and stereo speakers. Nothing special, i.e., of little/no interest to thieves.

Aftermarket cruise control, functional.

Engine block cockpit heat control valve replaced summer 2017.


Some minor dings and dimples as shown in accompanying photographs.

Paint (factory original Tahiti Blue) in good condition, with some recent chipping damage to the boot lid and bonnet in need of touch-up after a horse or horses attempted to chew on the body while my back was turned as the car was being moved from its safe long-term storage container through a pasture (horses are not to be trusted around valuable objects, as it turns out).

Original floorboards are intact with no rust.

Bonnet lift: dual air-oil struts installed 2017.

Battery newly installed May, 2017.

Windshield wiper motor may need servicing or replacement; operates somewhat slowly, good enough for light-moderate rain. Or, maybe that's as fast as it's designed to operate. This is the only MGB I've known.

Right door skin exhibiting the typical stress crack associated with mirror mount; stop-drilled, and a stainless steel machine screw, locknut and washers installed to stabilize many years ago. The crack has not grown as a result (see picture).

Electrical system:

Alternator replaced in 2005. I haven't had a dead or low battery since putting the car back on the road in April, 2017 and driving it periodically.

Battery new in April 2017. Battery cables in like-new condition, no corrosion.

No trades, etc. I'm trying to reduce my accumultion of stuff. For Sale only.