May 1, 2012 at 10:31 pm #234125
I had thought I was driving my VW based TD at a lower tire pressure for a smoother ride. I had 24psi all the way around. At the advice of Ed I lowered the front to 18psi. What a difference the 6lbs made! I went from two handed driving a fast go cart to one hand cruising. I checked the VW manual and there it was 18 psi front for radial and 16psi front for bias ply. I cant believe I never checked the manual or asked fellow members advice. For those driving a VW based car, lower the front tire pressure to 18psi as Ed suggested to me. It will make your cruising a joy. Thanks again Ed.May 2, 2012 at 9:27 am #250359Paul MossbergKeymaster
Another happy ending!
Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
2005 Intermeccanica Roadster
If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to https://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)May 2, 2012 at 10:06 am #250360Marc LipsiusParticipant
That won’t wear out the tires faster?
That may help a lot in my clearance issue with my front fenders making a sharp turn.
I have a hard time looking at a “flat” tire on my car, but I am going to try that.
What pressure are yo running on the rears?
mrlmd2012-05-02 10:08:06May 2, 2012 at 10:42 am #250361newkitmanParticipant
I ran my VWs 18 front and 22 rear. and then adjusted for best fuel milage. I can see where staying with 18 in the front would help with smoother and easier handling. I guess its because our TDs are a tad lighter. Great info Mike.
VW based 53MGTD - "MoneyPenny"
"If one thing matters, everything matters" - from the book The ShackMay 2, 2012 at 11:11 am #250362
The thanks go to Ed on this. I was a total duh on this, maybe because I grew up in an era where most just pumped in 30-32psi all the way around and drove on. The VW specs were the same 18psi in the front and I speculate the replicas are at least 200lbs lighter up front.May 2, 2012 at 11:12 am #250363
I bought my TD sight unseen. Towed it home and had never driven it before arriving in my driveway (I am a professional idiot, – do not try this at home). My first ride around the block on paved road was no fun. Then I took her out on the highway and ripped her up to 50mph. Hazardous! There was a small gusty wind and I was all over the road. But I had owned a few VW’s before and felt that all this squirrely handling was something I could fix (or at least I wasn’t going to sell my TD until I had given it a good honest effort).Forum members suggested lowering the front tire pressure to 18+/- pounds. My tires had 30psi in them. Wow. What a difference! But I was still not completely happy. More forum reading. I noticed that my front end sat un-naturally high. And was almost as stiff as my old 1948 Jeep CJ2A. More forum help here: “take out all the small leaves only leaving the big ones in both of the front beam tubes”. This meant taking out a total of 12 of the smaller torsion leaves (sounded like an awful lot to me). There were lots of forum words of encouragement and good forum photo’s: so I undertook it and took all the small leaves out figuring that I ccould put some back if necessary. Double Wow! I now have a TD that rides perfectly.I still do not like driving in gusty winds (Ed described driving our TDs as pushing a brick down the highway). But on a calm day, I have had her up to 70+ mph with lots of pedal left and was very secure albeit wind blown. Wind wings helped some, but truthfully not much. I am most happy at 45mph on a curvy country road (very unlike what exists here in Eastern NC).First step in improving ride: Get the tire pressure right. Most likely is should be much lower than you would think, as the VW based TDs are very light by the bow. Now my TD rides, handles, & corners much better than my old MGTF-1500 ever did (and it was perfect).May 2, 2012 at 12:50 pm #250364
Roy I followed your torsion bar removal and successful results. I plan to do the same to mine when I pull my body for new pans. I plan to follow your posts on this when I do mine. I may have to go with an adjustable beam because my car is level with about 3″ of tire to fender clearance and think I may need to bring it back up to ride height. My beam has never been cut and turned. As a side note I read on the Samba that 1/4″ on adjusters make 1″ travel in ride height. I cant confirm this myself, but they all seemed to be in agreement on this.May 2, 2012 at 1:18 pm #250365
Mike, is your floor pan relatively flat and parallel to the ground? 3″ seems about right and mine is about 2-1/2″ now. Mine dropped about 3 inches when I took the leaves out (and rode softer and more controllable.) Mine had a definate up angle before but now is darn close to parallel. I’m wondering if maybe yours already has leaves removed?? If they are all still there and you remove, you will need the adjustable beam. Changing this (the angle of the chassis relative to the pavement) of course changes the steering geometry. After reading a whole bunch, I aligned mine myself with a bit of trial and error (and maybe some luck.) and all’s well.May 2, 2012 at 2:09 pm #250366edward ericsonParticipant
Mlrmd–re “won’t tires wear faster”?
No. The lower pressure in the front is commensurate with the load on the tire–300, 350 lbs. Keeping them at 24 lbs or higher would make them wear faster in the center part of the tread.
BTW, I tried to impart the same advice over on the MG forum. Those guys are mules. They’re shouting me down and saying 30-32 is the way ’cause that’s what modern tires get.
OK then. Enjoy the ride, boys.May 2, 2012 at 2:11 pm #250367
Ahh Ed, those purists..they know not what they do!
Mike N Scarlett2012-05-02 14:11:27May 2, 2012 at 2:15 pm #250368
Roy I am sure my beam has not been turned. The grub screws are still at the 45 degree angle and there are no weld or grind marks. Im pretty sure no torsion bars have been removed as it takes my 220lbs jumping on the front bumper to make the springs squat.May 2, 2012 at 2:35 pm #250369
photo of my car. Sits pretty much the same front to backMay 2, 2012 at 3:24 pm #250370
Mike, Your car’s attitude looks right to me. Leaf removal & adjustable beam to restore height are in order.May 3, 2012 at 9:52 am #250371Marc LipsiusParticipant
I reduced my fronts to 20 psi, the rears to 25 psi and I do say my car rides much softer and sticks to the curvy roads very well riding around my area. I had it out on the road up to 65mph and it drives straight and smooth, but does get blown around a little by the wind. The ride seems much better to me. Thanks.
The very slight reduction in tire diameter doing this didn’t change my fender clearance – the outside edges of my tires still rub in a tight turn in either direction, and my front end is about 3/4″ lower than the rear of the car (don’t know if the previous builder removed any leaves or not).
What I am going to try and do is leave the shocks I have in place but try place shims on the top of the shocks, maybe a 1/2″ or so, to raise up the mount, therefore raise the body and fenders, providing that the top bolt of the shock is long enough to put on a lockwasher and single nut, instead of the 2 nuts locking together on there now. That will raise the body, leave everything else as is, and may be the easiest way to stop the tires rubbing, instead of spending a fortune in money and labor for an adjustable beam to raise the front an inch.May 3, 2012 at 10:02 am #250372
mrimd, Assuming that you have standard shocks, putting a spacer/shim in the shocks will not change the height of your TD at all (unless your shocks with helper springs around them). It will not give you more tire clearance. A shock absorber only slows (dampens) down the bouncy baby carriage ride that would exist if there were no shocks at all. You may have to do some investigating and see how many leaves you have in your beam tubes. Or perhaps an adjustable beam is in order.May 3, 2012 at 10:23 am #250373edward ericsonParticipant
That car sits plenty high & shouldn’t rub. Thing to do is crawl under and adjust the steering stop bolts. You’ll lose a tiny bit of turning radius but save the fenders.
Look on the steering box for a tab with a bolt that goes through and has a lock bolt. You should be able to find it. Make the side that contacts the steering arm just a bit longer–half a turn, 3/4 to start. Then test drive.May 3, 2012 at 6:12 pm #250374john barryParticipant
Thx guys .. I am enjoying following along these posts and topics …Usually which are way above my head..The tire pressure topic posts are excellent ..thx againwish I could hit Carlisle and catch up with you all ..maybe this fall if Roy does his eventjohn
jebarry2012-05-03 18:17:06May 3, 2012 at 8:40 pm #250375Paul MossbergKeymaster
No worries brother!
Carlisle happens every year!
Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
2005 Intermeccanica Roadster
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