So I thought to myself, perhaps I should consider changing the oil in my little Chinese-red racer. This is the first summer that I have had the opportunity to drive my ‘58 MGA roadster. During the past two years I have had to buy a steering mechanism all the way from New Zealand, new springs for the front suspension, a rebuilt windshield wiper unit, side curtains, the list goes on and on……
However, it’s worth the cost and effort, and, driving an MGA on a sunny day is still one of the best cures for that crappy day feeling, for the blues, or just to make one feel a bit special. Kids love to let you know that they ‘dig’ your car, they holler, give you thumbs up, high-five, smiles and whistles. It sort-of makes one feel ‘cool’ and young. Older people pull up along side you and comment: ”nice car”–“what year?”– “had one of those when they were new.” If you drive one you know what I mean. I’m off topic and I must get that oil changed. At our Hoser-eh’s pub nights last week we had talked about the ‘spin-on oil filter adapter’, It sounded like the way to go. No more fighting with that filthy oil filter that has become seized in its rusty holder.
Step number 1. Look up the part number in the handy-dandy Moss catalogue.
Number 2. bring up ‘bookmarks on the old computer—Little British Car Company‘– search–type in 235-940 and presto, up comes a part described as ‘Adapter kit, spin on oil filter’ MGA, MGB, thru ’67 (18G, G1, GB). Obviously this is the part I have looked for and at an excellent price to boot, thank you Jeff Zorn, MG guru. Oh, and I also need a shifter knob and the turning light green crystal (about the size of a lentil), might as well get that too.
A few days later my parts arrive, an event every bit as exciting as Christmas. I take the spin-on adapter out to the garage, open the hood – sorry, bonnet – and check my replacement part’s point of destination. At first glance it looks straight forward, spin the old one off–spin the new one on. A second more careful inspection reveals a major problem. My new adapter requires, what appears to be, a short rubber hose to transports the oil from the filter back to the engine. My car’s oil filter canister is ‘sans’ hose. A trip to Mike’s house (Mike also has an MGA, only his is in top-notch condition) proves that my engine is indeed different. A quick reading of the Tech Sessions chapter on the subject (18/1 Page 115) tells me that I must have a 1500 ZA Magnette engine. My engine number is BP 15M 5724–not even an MGA engine. That should mean something really important, but for now I have hit a brick wall. What to do next?
I check the condition of the oil, it’s golden and clear. Decision made. I will go for a slow, lazy drive through the old neighbourhood. “Hey, what year is that? I had one of those when they were new”,– “hey mister, nice car”. Now, there was something really important I was going to do to my little Chinese-red chariot, but for the life of me I can’t remember what that was. Driving my MGA always makes me feel so gosh-darned great.