Chicagoland MG Club: Driveline April 2015

MGAguru is on the Prowl

MGA Guru is Gone Mobile

A short month (4 weeks) just ran up another 4,000 miles. From Vicksburg, MS (on Feb 21), we drove in the small hours of the morning to Denham Springs, LA to join the northwest contingent of British Motoring Club New Orleans. Then we caravanned east (giving a TR4 a tune-up en-route) to Ponchatoula, LA for some antique shopping, then a bit south to Akers, LA for a casual lunch at Middendorf's Restaurant having collected 44 club members and friends. After a late lunch we got to install a new electronic fuel pump in a MG ZB Magnette to get it out of the restaurant parking lot and on its way home. Yes that was just one day of the past 28 days, and not atypical. Next day we were in Harahan LA to sort out a problem with disc brake conversion on a different ZB Magnette, and the following day a meeting with the collective British Motoring Club New Orleans (32 present).

On Feb 25 we crossed the Mississippi River for the first time in the trip, having now traveled every state east of the River, time to head more west. We spent a few days with a friend in Abbyville, LA checking out his collection of British vehicles (including a Ferguson), lending a hand to fix a few. On the 28th we took a short country cruise with several British cars including dinner and an evening visit to a local cruise nite, needing to push AND jump-start a TR6 to send him on his way home.

On March 1st we were out of Louisiana and into Texas, over a ferry crossing and through some rain, fuel stop in Port Arthur, landing at a friend's home (Pete and Nancy Newton) in Deer Park, TX, having anticipated this visit for some years. Pete has spent several years resurrecting a derelict MGA 1600-MK-II, now serving as a daily driver. Severely stuck fuel jets required carburetor overhaul and tune up.

Now I need to condense two weeks into a couple of paragraphs. Essentially we were zipping back and forth across Texas from Houston to San Antonio, back to Houston for a few days, then back to San Antonio area, and finally off toward College Station before heading north out of state. We met with Alamo MG Association (30 present), then Houston MG Car Club (30 present). I was resuscitating a 1954 MG TF belonging to Karen Hallett in Houston. We also visited Don and Jane Greer (near San Antonio) who have a 1952 which I managed to revive and tune up to put it back on the road.

We visited Ray Holtzapple and his MG Shop in Houston, collecting a copy of Engineering Technical Data for MG EX-187, and a complete list of every MGA Twin Cam produced showing all original factory equipment and colors and many of the owners, a copy of a report written by Russell Lowry in June 1955 detailing the personal and activities involved in the 1955 24 Hours Of Le Mans race with the then new (prototype class) MGA cars. We visited Phil Auldridge in Dripping Springs who runs Austin Classic Limo. Here we found a Hudson Hornet, a Cadillac Super 8, and BIG vintage Jaguar. Also a couple of Nash Metropolitans, and a very nice MGA with wire wheels. We visited Chris and Heather Spence in Austin, TX. Chris has a nice MGA 1600 tucked in with a classic Chevy Nova. We paid a short visit to Jeff's Resurrections in Taylor, TX, where we found lots of classic cars. Down the road an hour was Scott's Automotive Salvage Yard in Bryan, TX, where I collected pictures of at least two dozen British cars. Then we headed north for serious, nesting in southern Oklahoma by late night.
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