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MGA assembly in Australia, BODY WELDING - CKD-102D

Keep in mind that body shells for CKD cars in Australia were shipped as separate loose panels to be assembled and welded in Australia. The jig or fixture to hold the panels in alignment for welding was a car frame on legs, much different from body factory fixturing used by Pressed Steel in England. The difference in fixturing ultimately led to quite a number of differences in the way the panels were welded together or otherwise attached. There were places on the body that were difficult to access for spot welding, which lead to more manual welding in various forms (and sometimes riveting). The following photos and notes are courtesy of Greg Keenan in Australia.

On the Australian built MGAs the extension on the top of the hinge pillar was oxy welded to the pillar and then lead wiped to cover the weld. In the photo you can see the weld with the lead removed. The Australians also ran two short oxy welds on the other side of the hinge pillar as well as the usual spot welds. In having the opportunity to work on both Australian and English built cars I have found the Australian built cars easier to pick apart for repair as they used less spot welds. I have removed, repaired and replaced a number of hinge pillars on Aussie cars and I have found them all welded with those oxy welds.

The Australians used oxy welding in a few other places as well. One of them was the front body mounting where it was attached to the radiator duct panel. It wasnít spot welded, only oxy welded on the front edge.

On a car I am building for myself I removed the bonnet shroud to repair it and found the bulkhead panel that has the heater opening had not been spot welded to the inner guards on its vertical edge or on the edges at the top where it sits under the reinforcing brace. It was only spot welded along its horizontal edge to the inner guard. You can see in the other photo where I have put a few plug welds with the MIG in place of the missing spot welds. On my twin cam it is spot welded in that area. That particular car didnít have that many spot welds holding the bonnet shroud to the inner guards along the edges.


Another thing I have found on Aussie built cars is the holes in the inner guards and the guards have been roughly enlarged so the guards will bolt up. From the photo it looks like they have done it with the oxy and just blown the holes a bit bigger. I have seen a number of cars and they are all the same. The more I see and they are all the same I believe it must have been factory.

Cheers Greg.

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