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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 27-04-2005, 17:44 Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Modifying Newbies Look Here First

This is a definitive thread for those who are new to modifying Rovers and MG's.
I will put down all that I have learned from these forums, and urge others to do the same.

Wheels - Bubble 200/25/ZR

Anything up to 17" will fit fine without lowering.
With lowering 17's may rub at the rear under full load (1 driver + 3 passengers)
18's and 19's will also fit, but will almost certainly require arch work
The widest recommended width for wheels is 7.5"
The correct size PCD for 200/25/ZR wheels is 4 x 100. With an offset of ET38-45.

Induction Kits - K-series
K&N 57i and Pipercross open filters are great for noise, but lousy for performance.
If you require performance, a closed kit is advised (Pipercross Viper, Taipan II etc). Alternatively you can use an old Rover 820 airbox and surround your K&N 57i providing all the benefits of an enclosed system.
For a cheaper option, a panel filter will provide nearly as good a gain as an enclosed kit, but with less than quarter of the cost.

Suspension - Bubble 200/25/ZR
If you want to lower 30-35mm there is a wide variety of springs available to provide the desired drop. I personally recommend AVO lowering springs for the MGZR.
It is recommended that you do not go lower than 35mm on OE dampers, they just wont last like that.
If you want to drop lower than 35-40mm, then coilovers is the only real option available. Again there is a good choice of kits available.
A cheaper, but very good option is ZR dampers and springs. These can be had on Ebay for very reasonable money. The full setup should lower your car by 15-20mm. The handling will be greatly improved also.

Tuning - K-series
In short, there is no point tuning the 1.1 or 1.4 variants, for the money involved, you might aswell get a bigger engine (1.6, 1.8, 1.8vvc or 2.0turbo T-series)
Due to the K-series being popular in kit cars and motorsport there are a lot of tuning companies around (eg www.dvapower.co.uk).
It may take a while but I'm sure you'll find one within driving distance of you.
If you want BIG power (200+bhp) an engine conversion is the best way to go, the T-series is a reputable engine with up to 700bhp possible (The mental guys at ANR have proven that!).
Again many companies can do this...

TURBOING A 1.4 IS POINTLESS!! JUST GET A FASTER CAR!
This isn't technically true. While its a very expensive way of getting a little extra power, it is possible to see 130+bhp from turboing your 1.4. But once you take into account extra insurance costs, you may find buying a faster car the better option.

Exhaust - All models
In my personnal opinion the best way to go with exhausts is custom.
They don't cost as much as you think, at least inquire. you may be surprised
Otherwise there are many off the shelf parts available (eg Janspeed, Scorpion, Rage etc)
Tailpipe designs are ENTIRELY up to you, it's your car no one elses do it to your style.
If your on a tight budget a backbox will do just fine.
If you want to splash out a little a cat-back system is overall the better option.
Persoanally, I would stay away from "universal" backboxes. What you save in price, you make up for in bad looks and costs of fitting.
The cost of your exhaust all depends on what you want.
Looks and sound, a 180 backbox will do great.
Performance, looks and sound. You'll really need a 300+ cat back system.
Extreme preformance, looks and sound. You'll need Manifold, sport cat, and cat back system. 800+

Spoilers - All Rovers and MGs
MG spoilers are an attractive way of adding style to your Rover. They go on Ebay VERY frequently, if there is none on there just check back the next week.
You can fit spoilers like this...
Zr spoiler onto a Rover 200/25. 3 or 5dr, they share the same bootlid.
ZS spoiler onto a Rover 400/45 The saloon and hatch ones are not easily interchangable. It would be possible to make them fit, but it would be difficult.
ZT spoiler onto a Rover 75
By all means feel free to cross breed spoilers and cars. People on here have put ZS spoilers on 600s and it looks great. Don't be limited by normality


200 to 25/ZR conversion
It's a lot of work.
you will need:
New bumper, new front wings, new bonnet, new headlights, new bonnet slam panel, new washer bottle filler neck. there is also some electrics to do.
You will also need to find a bodyshop willing to do it
Insurance companies do not like this, as it involves cutting and welding back on structural strong points of the car. If you wish to do this PLEASE CHECK YOUR INSURER FIRST!

20+bhp chip on Ebay
They don't work, and they will also kill your engine. Nuff said.
Not entirely true. Whilst they do work, they will kill your engine.
They trick the ECU into thinking its cold all the time, and the ECU pumps more fuel in to warm the engine (or something like that!). This is bad. Your engine will sieze.
If you really want one, all they are are cheap resistors that can be found at any hardware store.
The variable ones you see, these are just variable resistors.
The "Race mode" ones you see. These are just resistors with an on/off switch.

Brakes - Bubble 200/25/ZR and 400/45/ZS
The most common (and from what I can tell easiest) up grade for the spongy brakes that come on all smaller engines (1.1, 1.4, 1.6 and I think 1.8) is the 262mm upgrade from larger engined Rovers/MGs. It is a straight swap and you can find these parts in the "For Sale" Section or on Ebay.
For more powerful brakes, the 282mm upgrade from ZR160s and ZS180s is an easy one to do.

Insurance
I know, I know. We all hate it, but it is a legal requirement.
When it comes to insuring a modified car, you should state ALL the mods. Any you have not stated, will be likely to invalidate you cover. If this happens, you will not recieve any money from your insurer to repair/replace your car. Nor will any person you hit.
Third party Fire and theft is only advisable if your car is worth 0-300. Depending on how much you are willing to lose should the car become a right off.
I know how silly it can be if the car is only worth 50, and you're paying 1000 a year to insure it. Believe me, I've been there.
By paying for the crappy car to be 100% legal, you are building up a NCB (No claims bonus). The more NCB you have the lower your insurance quote is likely to be.
If you hit someone with TPFT cover, you will recieve no money to repair/replace your car, but the person you hit will recieve money to repair/replace theirs.
With TPFT, you will also recieve money if your car is stolen. I think you also recive money if it is damaged without anyone being at fault. But I don't know this.

Fully comp is advised if your car is worth more than you can afford to replace. This is generally more expensive than TPFT cover, but should you hit someone, you will recieve money to repair/replace your car.

In both TPFT and FC, if someone hits you, their insurance will pay for it.
If they are not insured, then you will have a long and painful process getting repair money. This is why you should insure your car. Other people should not have to pay for your ignorance! Of course, I'm not saying anyone on here would do that, but we all know that people do.

Insurance and tuning.
You have two options if you want more power but don't want to pay much. You can tune your car to be fast, or buy a faster car. More often than not, buying the faster car is cheaper in the long run.
Although it seems at first glance that tuning your existing car will be cheaper, chances are its not.
For example, You have a 1.6 Rover 200 Mk3. You want give or take 140bhp. Tuning the 1.6 to this high an output will cost around 2,000. Now, I can't possibly tell you what it will cost you in insurance. Only your insurance company can tell you that. What I can tell you, is insurers HATE tuned cars. Say you were paying 800 a year for the standard 1.6, aftertuning it you could be paying 1,500+
Now, the total cost of that is around 2,700. Thats a lot.
If you were to sell you 1.6 and buy a 200vi (which sell for about 1k I think), you'll have 140bhp straight off the bat. You'll also have better suspension, gearbox and brakes to cope with the power.
Then you'll have to insure it. There is a good chance the insurance will be high. I would say if it was 800 for the 1.6, you're looking at about 1-1.2k for the Vi.
that makes for a total cost of 1,400, minus whatever you sold the 1.6 for.
I know what makes sense to me!

Please feel free to add your bit and correct me on anything I have missed or stated incorrectly. Please post constructive posts only. Thank you

PS-I know I have stuck mostly to 200's 25/ZR's but they're all I know about!

(Just an idea but possibly a "Sticky" thread?)

Last edited by Stiff; 01-05-2007 at 13:04.
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 29-05-2005, 13:00
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bumper and side strips colour coding:

NO NEED TO REMOVE THEM, if you're lazy and dont wanna risk breaking them, just suround them with addesive tape and old news paper pages then spray them, looks as good as if you removed them.

In the same topic, I'm sure someone will be good enough to post tips on spraying things properly, I personnaly go to a bodyshop whenever I have something to spray.
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 29-05-2005, 23:50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt
Not the best advice tbh, much better idea to take them off. Just be carefull and take your time!
No, definitely not a good idea. Just simply masking with news paper is not enough. The particles of spray will most likely become airborne and be drawn to parts of the car not protected.
Tried that, done it and you always end up with spurious particles of paint on your nice shiny paintwork.

They are not hard to get off. The plastic is quite flexible and they will easily pop off the clips if you pull them right and take your time.
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 30-05-2005, 10:18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tad
bumper and side strips colour coding:

NO NEED TO REMOVE THEM, if you're lazy and dont wanna risk breaking them, just suround them with addesive tape and old news paper pages then spray them, looks as good as if you removed them.

In the same topic, I'm sure someone will be good enough to post tips on spraying things properly, I personnaly go to a bodyshop whenever I have something to spray.
Remove the side strips. It 's possible to get them looking good by masking, but as the paint doesn't penetrate round the rear edge, some have reported problems as much as 2 years on with peeling at the edges. It's only 1/2 hours work to remove the door cards if you know what you're at.

Most 400 bubble wheels fit 200s/25s, and look natty, and vice versa, though the tyre sizes might differ from 4 to 2 on identical rims.

Enjoy.

DD
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-06-2005, 20:37
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Just for anyone interested it all relates to the 400/45/zs as well really as they the same engines etc.
Bodykit wise again mg bits fit but this time zs not zr i.e spoilers bumpers and the front end conversion is again possible but costly. There are kits out there for the 400/45/zs if you wnt one just not as many as for the hatch, but then again you will syand out more as they less common.
Wheels i had mine lowered on 17's with no probs and after removing the arch liner and havin the arch lips rolled i've been running around on 19's for ages.
Suspension wise watch out as the rear springs on 400's have different diameters i found this out the long teidious way so check you size first, pi are the only company to list both rear sizes, the other companies do the more common size. zs suspension fits as well including aftermarket setups i have a avo coiler kit for a zs on my 400 so take my word for it.

HTH
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 27-04-2007, 09:13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stiff View Post

TURBOING A 1.4 IS POINTLESS!! JUST GET A FASTER CAR!
Great post stiff. Dont really agree with the above though and dont think many R5 GTT Owners would either

Personal preference, Id rather have a 1.4 Turbo than a nasp 1.8.

2L Turbo than a 2.5 V6.

All comes down to the money in your pocket though, cheapest way is to get a faster car

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stiff View Post
20+bhp chip on Ebay
They don't work, and they will also kill your engine. Nuff said.
too true, cant stress this enough
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 27-04-2007, 10:14 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marsh View Post
Great post stiff. Dont really agree with the above though and dont think many R5 GTT Owners would either

Personal preference, Id rather have a 1.4 Turbo than a nasp 1.8.

2L Turbo than a 2.5 V6.

All comes down to the money in your pocket though, cheapest way is to get a faster car
I'd rather have a slow reliable nasp 1.4 than a fast 1.4 turbo that broke down each time I filled up wth petrol! And R5s are fugly.
Of course it is all down to money. But if you can afford to shell out s on turbocharging an engine that will never see the far side of 180bhp. You can afford to shell out for a 1.8/2.0 turbo whcih are both capable of more than 180bhp.
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 04-10-2007, 00:47
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just to add, to all those who are painting their non-painted plastics, the reason paint peels of is due to the weather. As it heats up, the plastics expand, and as it cools they contract. this movement eventually causes the paint to peel...

...unless you use a plasticizer. I'm not sure how they work, but i know they DO work. I've seen many a car ruined by the peeling paint. I've used plasticizers on all my unpainted plastics (including your dash parts on leathered cars as they get extremely hot in the summer, don't we all know!) and i've never had any trouble!

thought i'd add that

as anotehr person said, if you can afford it, get a bodyshop to paint your kit. Their professionals for a reason well 99% of the time, you got the occasional faker!
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 04-10-2009, 12:37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigrick2k View Post
Ok ive just been told off for txt chat so better rewrite.

Ive just written off my much loved Mg Zs 180.

Im hoping to drop the engine into a Zr.... Can anyone give me any information on any sucessful conversions please????????
Good luck. Its been tried a couple of times. Both resulted in not very good conversions that took months to complete.

The engine doesn't fit straight, sits at an angle and needs totally rewiring. Huge job and really not worth the hassle.

Stu

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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-11-2010, 21:17
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Just a reminder that the idea of this sticky thread is to make a comprehensive list of lessons learned when making modifications and is not intended for general queries. These should be made by starting a new thread in the most relevant section.





The Modification and Tuning section is intended for some of the more ambitious or interesting engine and body changes. Regular changes such as big exhausts and air filter kits don't really qualify and are better covered by the specific vehicle sections where these mods are very common and will get more replies.



Thanks.

Last edited by 1955diesel; 08-05-2011 at 15:56.
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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 08-05-2011, 11:07
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Thread cleaned up to reflect intention of original post.

Posts removed from this thread can now be found here - Posts edited from Newbies thread.

Last edited by 1955diesel; 08-05-2011 at 15:58.
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 09-05-2011, 14:58
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More about Engine Tuning -

Camshafts.

Perhaps some of the biggest power gains and changes to the engine's character are available with a cam change. These are available in a whole range of specifications from the near production through to full race cams that produce their best only at very high engine speeds. Bear in mind that you require different cams depending on whether you are going to run hydraulic tappets or solid ones and that you may also need to set up the timing using vernier pulleys or perhaps stepped drive pins. Additionally, to get the best from your mods you are going to need to retune the engine's ignition and fueling which makes the whole exercise quite expensive!

Head and Manifold Fettling -
Around 5 bhp is available almost for free by cleaning up the valve seats and manifolds. This is simply a matter of removing any steps that the gas flow may encounter and at its most basic can be done using careful work with an electric drill and flexi drive. More serious modifications involving changing the shape of the ports should not be attempted unless you have the required experience and knowledge of the engine.
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 09:36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stiff View Post
Tuning - K-series
In short, there is no point tuning the 1.1 or 1.4 variants, for the money involved, you might aswell get a bigger engine (1.6, 1.8, 1.8vvc or 2.0turbo T-series)
The reason for the above statement is quite simple. The smaller capacity engines are already in quite a high state of tune for a production engine and most of the components fitted are adequate to support even the larger capacity variants so don't leave much room for further gains to be made. The way to increase the power significantly is by making a camshaft change, but by the time you have paid for these, the vernier pulleys required and a remap you could easily get better results by increasing the capacity to 1800. This mod would then place you in a better position if you decided to go for still more power!

As for turbocharging the 1.4, see this thread - 1.4 Turbo K series 242.4 hp 216lbft torque

Last edited by 1955diesel; 12-05-2011 at 15:26.
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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 31-07-2011, 21:24
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MG 16" wheels on R25

Hiya folks,
I am wanting to replace my standard 14" Rover steel wheels for a set of Hairpin MG 16" alloys. The Rover wheels are 185/65/14 and the MG wheels are 205/50/16. My question is do I need a spacer or something so the wheel doesn't rubbed the inner arch?
Cheers
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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 31-07-2011, 21:38
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I have an 04 R25 with standard R25 14" (185/65/14) steel wheels and I want to put a set of MG 16" hairpin alloys on. The tyre size of those bad boys are 205/50/16. My question is simple for those in the know...Do I need a spacer or something so the tyres don't rub the inner arches and mechanics etc?
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post #16 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-08-2011, 17:27
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Not really the right thread to be asking that :P but no you don't. As the wheels get bigger the width of the tyre gets smaller, so the overall diameter is the same.

I upgraded my 200 from standard 14s upto 17" straights with no problem
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post #17 of 21 (permalink) Old 22-11-2011, 21:03
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spoiler light help

i want to put the zr spoiler on my 214si and I know it should fit but will the brake light form my spoiler fit into the zr one, or will i have to buy a new brake light too?
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post #18 of 21 (permalink) Old 21-02-2012, 22:30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by conor13524 View Post
i want to put the zr spoiler on my 214si and I know it should fit but will the brake light form my spoiler fit into the zr one, or will i have to buy a new brake light too?
Buy a new brake light too, its different size.
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post #19 of 21 (permalink) Old 24-03-2012, 21:53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by conor13524 View Post
i want to put the zr spoiler on my 214si and I know it should fit but will the brake light form my spoiler fit into the zr one, or will i have to buy a new brake light too?
You will have to buy a new brakelight because the rover brake light is about an inch to short to fit. I found that out the hard way. I still need to get one for my spoiler on my rover 25
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post #20 of 21 (permalink) Old 13-02-2013, 20:55
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which injectors

Hi all .. bit new to this site so hope this goes in the right place ... done a few mod's to my mg zr td 115 .. Next on the list is injectors .. so which are the ones in want? Is it any from 200,400,600 diesel or does it ave to be a sdi or sd model. Also lookin for someone to remap it when fitted in the next day or to..
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