25 Apr

MOGSouth Spring Meet 2017 – Greenville SC

What a great meet!! We had a ball!!

A superb location, a superb turnout and a great itinerary of events for the Club membership.  Greenville, SC has certainly grown up since I lived there around the turn of the century.  I was lost on almost every street we took.   The downtown has been transformed with cobbled streets, quaint gas lights, and gardens and trees aligning main street.   A plethora of shops, cafes and other delights were in place and we had numerous opportunities during the weekend to stroll and enjoy the sights.   The only challenge we had was parking.   No different than any other busy downtown.

The Spring Meet turn out was quite good and I was amazed at the variants of Morgan cars.  Series 1, 4/4s with Lotus Twin Cam, CVH, 1600, Plus 4 2 Strs, 4 Strs, DHCs, Flat Rads, Aero 8, Roadsters, Plus 8s and even Joe Speetjens in his Corvette powered Plus 8.   Lots of oohs and aahs and lots of tires to kick.  I think I counted 17 cars but might have missed one or two.

Members came from far and wide. In attendance were;
1. Graeme & Jenny Addie
2. Emma & Brian Slater (Graeme & Jenny’s daughter & Family)
3. Chuck & Karen Bernath
4. John Bigler
5. Mark & Andrea Braunstein
6. Austin & Jinny Britton
7. Pat & Judy Buckley
8. Lynn Craig
9. Rick & Sam Frazee
10. Lee & Trisha Gaskin
11. Gene Spainhour & Pat Harris
12. Gary & Judy Heck
13. Fred & Gay Hollinger
14. Richard & Janet Ihns
15. Andy & Anne Leo
16. Lance & Connie Lipscomb
17. Gene & Betsy McOmber
18. Brian & Rosie Miller
19. Dorothy & Glenn Moore
20. Ian & Barbara Shelmerdine
21. Joe & Cynthia Speetjens
22. John & Debbie Stanley
23. Robert & Nancy Ullerich

Saturday morning was a drive through the twisty bits to Ceasars Head State Park and then to lunch, a short drive away, at the Hotel Domestique.  Wonder drives, views and it was great to top it all off with as superb lunch.  Then back down the mountain and more exploring in and around Greenville.

Custom Sketch from Caesars Head SC by Lynn Craig. [I have better resolution if desired. Send me an email. Mark]

Dinner was at the Liberty Tap Room and Grill right nest to Flour Field, the local Baseball Stadium.  The place was electric as there was a ball game going on as well.  I was surprised the Liberty Tap Room and Grill could handle our crowd.  They did and the dinner was great.   (Be sure to see the pictures in the Photo Gallery. Event Photos )

Sunday came with a threat of rain, but we didn’t really get hit, heading south for Florida.  We heard others, heading north and west, did get a downpour.  Well, no amount of rain could put a damper on the meet.

‘Job Well Done’ to the Leos (Andy and Anne) and the Buckleys (Pat and Judy) who organized the event!!

18 Apr

Make A Leak-Down Tester (www.mossmotors.com)

[A recent report of a Morgan owner performing a compression test on cylinders to determine performance state reminded me of a need to measure not only compression per cylinder but also leak down.  This tool is simple and cheap and this article talks you through the process.  Mark]

One of the simplest but most useful pieces of tune-up equipment is the cylinder-leakage tester. It can tell you if your engine has damaged valves, worn rings, a blown head gasket or a cracked block, thereby pinpointing compression leakage.

The cylinder-leakage, or leak-down, tester operates on a simple principle: A cylinder with its piston at top dead center (TDC) and both valves closed, should be reasonably airtight. By injecting a measured amount of air into each cylinder and observing the rate of leakage, you’re able to see if the cylinder-piston-valve assembly is good.

If the cylinder doesn’t hold the air, it has to be escaping – either past the rings, through one or both of the valves, through a crack in the head or block, or past a leaky head gasket. By simply listening at various points of possible escape, it’s relatively easy to determine exactly where the problem is. Worn rings will allow the air to seep into the crankcase and out the oil filler tube; a burned exhaust valve will allow air to exit through the exhaust system; a burned intake valve will allow air to exit through the carburetor; a cracked cylinder head or block will allow air to escape through the radiator, as will a defective head gasket, which also may let the escape from under the cylinder head.

Okay, that’s what a leak-down tester can do for you. If you’d like one, you can buy one from any of several reputable manufacturers for a few hundred dollars. Or you can make your own for about $35.

First, you need an air regulator. It must be fairly small and easy to handle, and it must be the self-relieving type. That is, capable of providing 0 to 100 psi without bleeding the line it’s connected to. You’ll need a regulator with two outlet ports, threaded for pipe thread.

The next item on your list is a 100 psi pressure gauge available from plumbing supply houses. Be sure to get one with a threaded fitting to mate with your regulator.

Next stop is you neighborhood auto-parts store for a length of high-pressure hose, an adapter to screw into your engine’s spark-plug holes and some air-line quick couplers to tie it all together. Either a length air-line hose 12 to 18 inches long or a high-pressure grease gun hose will work. Depending on the size of the hose’s threaded end you may need bushings. At any rate, it’s likely to be male thread, so buy an air chuck to fit it.

You’ll also need a second male air chuck to screw into the inlet port of the regulator, and a quick coupler with a 1/4 inch male threaded end. These items are available in most auto-supply stores or through large chain stores and should cost less than $5 total.

[Ok, maybe a few more than $5, taking into inflation into consideration. This article was written in 2007. Mark]

One of the male air chucks screws into the regulator’s inlet side. Use sealant on all threads to make sure the connections are air-tight. The pressure gauge screws into one outlet port and the female quick coupler goes in the other. Plug any other open ports in the regulator.

Screw the remaining air chuck onto one end of the hose and the spark-plug hole adapter on the other. Make sure you use the adapter that’s sized for your car’s spark plug holes; keep the other one in a safe place. There, you have a cylinder-leakage tester!

Now, the next step is to learn how to use it.

Start by removing all the spark plugs from your engine. (Make sure to mark all the wires first.) Next, you’ve got to bring piston No. 1 to TDC on the compression stroke – both valves closed. Screw the hose with the spark-plug adapter into the No. 1 cylinder’s spark-plug hole. Connect the other piece of your tester to the air supply by using the male chuck that’s screwed into the regulator. This charges the tester with pressure. Adjust the regulator until the gauge reads 100 psi. Now connect the two pieces of the tester together.

Since you’re no longer injecting air into the cylinder, your gauge reading will drop off as some air seeps past the rings.  A 20-percent drop in pressure is the generally accepted limit for a healthy cylinder. In other words, if it drops below 80 psi you’ve got a problem.  Before condemning your engine, however, be sure the test are done on an engine warmed to operating temperature. (A cold engine will not hold air as well as one that’s warmed up.) Also, be sure the piston is at TDC on the compression stroke. Remember – all cylinders leak, but at different rates. The less leakage, the better the cylinder.





18 Apr

There May be More to the Story re: New Morgans in the US

Yesterday I posted some words that may have caused some concern about the availability of new Morgans in the US in the near future.

The main premise of my post was that, based on information obtained from sources I believe to be credible, they speculated that the MMC might not have the motivation to produce cars for the US.

It was thought that producing cars for the US would necessitate changes in the MMC production rates and methods and these are seen as challenges.

I have been subsequently been informed, by additional credible sources, that the MMC is not really concerned about production challenges at this point in time.  In reality, it is all the prerequisites – the legal details necessary to allow Morgan imports to the US – that have yet to occur.   And, the MMC does want to have a US market in the future.

So bottom line, regardless of their motivation at the moment, the MMC hands are tied.  We can only really speculate when and if, once all the details regarding the laws are resolved.

As this has yet to happen, we can try to accelerate the US Government’s actions by notifying our congressional representative of our desires.


17 Apr

New 4 Wheelers in the US? – Not Likely Anytime Soon!

All of us in the US have been following closely the new regulations that allow Morgan to create cars for import into the US.   Some of us have happily placed orders and paid deposits to the dealers.  The rumors had been at least new Roadsters would find their way to the US.  I have to believe this is still possible but . . .

I am not the only one skeptical.   The Morgan blog thinks otherwise as the MMC is currently at production capacity and selling everything they produce, now, without the US cars.  It’s a question of their motivation.

And, it doesn’t appear to just be just the bloggers and their speculation.  They are talking the MMC management directly and drawing their conclusions from these discussions.

Some quotes from the blog.

“I’ve heard that Morgan isn’t really interested in filling those [US] orders (325 cars) as they are selling every car they can build right now and have no interest in expanding, ramping up production, etc.”

“I talked to [MMC Management] about this very issue earlier in the year. 
No real interest in filling the [US] orders. 

“Production is at capacity, without adding an extra shift to extend the working day they cannot make more…and to do this would require a major change to the organisation of the production side of the business. 
Also, it would need a new team of craftsmen to do the work. They have enough trouble training/finding people to replace retirees and leavers.” 

“There is no realistic way they can go from 750 cars to 1000.”

Hopefully, we are all wrong, and new cars will come to the US in the coming months, however I am not holding my breath.


11 Apr

Morgan – A Technology Infrastructure Upgrade?? (malvernobserver.co.uk)

[We recently saw the MMC purchase an integrated computer based manufacturing system called IFS.  I guess modernization is inevitable, even for Morgan, but I sure would like to know the scope of this effort.  Mark] 

CLOSE Brothers Technology Services has been awarded the contract to finance the technology infrastructure upgrade at Morgan Motor Company’s Malvern headquarters.

The work forms part of a strategic technology refresh project aimed at ensuring the company is well positioned to continue to produce its cutting-edge cars at its 100-year old factory and prepare it for future business demands.

The systems which will be deployed as part of the contract will focus on cloud-based integrated systems and improving the mobility of the company’s employees to boost and improve its already outstanding customer relations.

Ian McVicar, chief executive of Close Brothers Technology Services, said: “Morgan motor company already had a strong relationship with Close Brothers Motor Finance and approached us to help finance technology that not only met their requirements today, but also set them up for future success.

”To ensure that this was achieved, we provided a benchmarking and due diligence service aimed at ensuring their locally sourced technology solution was fit for purpose and competitively priced.”

03 Apr

Morgan Run for the Hills in the UK (www.malverngazette.co.uk)


THOUSANDS of Morgan cars will be returning to their home town of Malvern this summer for a very special event.

Morgan Motors and the Morgan Sports Car Club have joined forces for Run For The Hills 2017 at the Three Counties Showground, billed as an event not to be missed by fans of the hand-made cars.

The event promises to be the biggest gathering of Morgans since the company celebrated its centenary in 2009.

Run For The Hills promises two days and nights of live entertainment, Morgan themed events, trade stands and much more.

It will include tours of the Morgan factory in Pickersleigh Road, where visitors can explore the history of the family-owned British marque, from the first three-wheelers built in 1909 by founder H F S. Morgan, through over a century of innovation and craftsmanship to the modern high-performance Aero range.

There will also be a gala dinner, and the weekend will finish with the English Symphony Orchestra headlining the Morgan Prom Spectacular, with a firework finale set against the backdrop of the Malvern Hills.

A fundraising auction at the dinner will raise money for the British Heart Foundation, which Morgan has this week declared its charity of the year,

Steve Morris, Morgan’s managing director, said: “Run For The Hills is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate everything that people love about Morgan. Whether you have a Morgan in your driveway or just a poster on your wall, Run For The Hills is for all enthusiasts.

“Every Morgan ever produced was crafted in Malvern and what better way to celebrate over 108 years of innovation than by bringing the cars home? We look forward to welcoming thousands of cars back to the hills that have echoed to the sound of every Morgan for over 100 years.”

A range of ticket and accommodation packages are available including single day tickets, gala dinner tickets, weekend tickets and concert tickets.

For further details, visit morgan-motor.co.uk/runforthehills.