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GRILLE, Original, 1500 Early - BD-102E

On Nov 15, 2016, David T in Bedworth, Warwickshire, UK wrote;
"I have an early car April 1956. I believe the Grille to be early by the state of it, deep rust, bends dents etc. I have straightened and cleaned it up, but have noticed that the grille slats are actually chromed. Clearly visible is the aging of the chrome plate, I polished through a small area to what appears to be brass. Slats are definitely made of brass, no sharp edges and I cut into one at the rear near a rivet".
MGA 1500 grille, early MGA 1500 grille, early

For comparison with the more common later 1500 grilles, Don Tremblay in Rutland, USA wrote:
"I checked out the composition of the 1/2 dozen or so original grilles that I have and found the following:

  • Shells are brass
  • False nose pieces are brass
  • All brackets (6 qty.) are magnetic
  • The grille slate retainer strips (2 qty.) are aluminum
  • The rivets holding the slats in non loaded areas are aluminum
  • The rivets holding the brackets are magnetic
  • The slats (I tested 5 original sets) are magnetic which really surprised me. I would have thought that they were stainless (magnetic stainless) or brass.
  • None of the slats appear to be chromed.
  • "No aluminium retainers. Note the steel strengthnener in the center, this fits behind the shell, the rivets retaining the slats to brackets are steel, the other slat flat rivets are brass not aluminium, they look grey but on scraping one clean its brass, the first picture, look closely at the slats, the one has gone gold looking where I have gone through the chrome plate, also look closely and you can see the oxidation/ pitting ageing of the chrome on the slats".
    MGA 1500 grille, early MGA 1500 grille, early
    "Picture of the front. Note particularly the ageing of the chrome on the slats. I have aquired a repro grille that I thought of using but noticed that whilst the curvature was ok the profile of it was very different to this old grille".
    MGA 1500 grille, early MGA 1500 grille, early

    Very interesting. Not that I doubt any of this, just that it appears to be new information that is different than common knowledge. So I would like to see it verified before acknowledging it as original. As David wrote in his original post, "does anyone else have or heard of a grille like this"? Inquiring minds want to know.

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