|The MGA With An Attitude
Changing BALL BEARINGS to ROLLER BEARINGS - FS-206
Before you get carried away with the idea of converting your MGA front wheel hubs from ball bearings to tapered roller bearings, read this.
At 03:13:49 UK time on 10 July 05, Mick Anderson wrote:
"Just an observation from when I fitted tapered rollers to my MGA 1500 in 1959 (foolishly without the spacer tube). Outside of my house I had a gently sloping road that then became flat for a long distance, traffic was a couple of cars a day. I let the car roll on the slope and then waited for it to stop on the level part. I was surprised how much further it rolled with the ball bearings. I would have changed the tapered bearings back to ball bearings, but I had already taken metal off the stub axle to make the tapered rollers a sliding fit. When someone wiser than I told me that the stub axle would break, I used the spacer tube and shim system of the tapered bearings of the just released MGA Twin Cam."
I have never done this conversion, and do not intend to, and do not recommend it. If someone can convince me that there is some functional advantage to it, I might be encouraged to post the conversion instructions.
Yes I know the tapered roller bearings can take a higher lateral load, but how much is enough, or why should it need more? My MGA ran more than a quarter million miles on the original ball bearings with no problem, including a lot of serious autocrossing on sticky race tires, several sets of them over several years. Cornering forces with the race tires are high enough to produce stress cracks in original type steel wheels, but the ball bearings hold up just fine.