Stacey Schepens, the MOGSouth Registrar and Treasurer has changed addresses.
If you have business with the MOGSouth Registrar or Treasurer use this new address for Stacey.
2426 Monta Vista Way
Hoschton, GA 30548
If you have business with the MOGSouth Registrar or Treasurer use this new address for Stacey.
2426 Monta Vista Way
Hoschton, GA 30548
[It happens to me all the time. The wrench won’t fit, it’s too small, so I get the next larger one and it won’t fit either, it’s too large. Nothing in between? What now, darn, it’s probably ‘Whitworth’. If you play with old British cars, you have most likely run into this situation. An interesting read with the morning coffee. Unless you abhor auto parts?? Mark]
Most of us think of car parts in terms of carburetors, engines, transmissions, brakes, and so on. The most common part in any car isn’t really noticed at all until you take one apart. Even then you don’t think much about it until it comes time to put the car back together again and, suddenly, you discover that you don’t have quite as many as you should. I’m talking about the nuts and bolts that hold a car together.
To make matters more interesting, a good many of the cars we deal with don’t use nuts and bolts that can be purchased from the corner hardware store. Much maligned and misunderstood, the Whitworth hardware used on older British cars has an interesting history.
Threaded fasteners go back a long way. In 1568, the first practical screw cutting machine was invented by a French mathematician named Jacques Besson. After that, things took off…after a fashion. By 1611 the idea had caught on in England well enough for it to be mentioned in a book, the significant point being that the companion piece to any screw—the nut—was mentioned as well. While the concept was basically sound, in practice there were a few bugs to be worked out. In general, a screw is a threaded fastener that is turned into a threaded hole; a bolt passes through the hole and is secured with a nut on the other side. In the 1600’s putting something together was a real chore. Once you found a bolt you liked, you had to find a nut, and that was a matter of chance [Still is, in my garage . . . . Mark] since nobody had any idea of making the treads the same. Once you found a nut that fit, (well, sort of) the nut and bolt were tied together with string. Since the threads on any one fastener were unique, taking something apart and putting it back together again could be a lifetime occupation. Just be thankful that the car had not yet been invented.
This happy chaos continued until well into the industrial revolution, when Henry Maudslay perfected a lathe that made it possible to adjust the thread pitch of a screw. This made it possible to make large numbers of identical screws. The idea of making the bolts for one machine all the same seems to have caught on. at least with the folks who had to put them together.
Making threaded fasteners on a lathe is time consuming, and therefore expensive. In 1850 a man from New York named William Ward perfected a system for forming the threads on a bolt by heating it to 1600 degrees Fahrenheit, and then rolling it between two grooved dies. The grooves on the flat dies were forced into the bolt, and the threads were formed as the bolt rolled between the fixed and the moving die.
This same basic system is used today, the only difference being that the bolts are not heated before being rolled. “Cold” forming produces much more uniform threads, allowing closer tolerances, and because the bolts are not heated, they are stronger.
Even today, the development of this technology would not really matter if there were no national or international standards for threads on screws and bolts. We would still be buying nuts and bolts as matched pairs. The man responsible for the development of the first standards for the production of threaded fasteners Is none other than Joseph Whitworth. [Who knew?? Mark] In 1841, his paper, “A Uniform System of Screw Threads”, set forth a concept that was to revolutionize manufacturing.
His idea was simple:
Finally, there was a system. If adopted, that would allow the fasteners used on one type of machine to be replaced with another “standard” fastener. The logic was hard to beat, and England adopted the system to the extent that by 1881 it was the effectively the British standard.
The Whitworth System was used as proposed for bolts and screws from 1/8″ to 4 1/4″ in shank diameter up to 1908, when an additional thread form was proposed—British Standard Fine (BSF). Presented by the British Engineering Standards Association, BSF was identical to the original Whitworth form except that the pitch was finer—meaning more threads per inch. Now a bolt with a diameter of 1/4 inch could have either 20 threads per inch (BSW) or 26 (BSF). The advantage of the finer thread pitch is two fold. A fine thread bolt is about 10% stronger than a coarse thread bolt of the same size and material. [I knew this but I didn’t know why I knew this. Mark] Fine threaded fasteners also have greater resistance to vibration. Those of you who have worked on cars with Whitworth hardware will have noticed that almost all the hardware is BSF for these reasons. Why use any coarse threaded bolts at all? Coarse thread fasteners are well suited for use in tapped holes in material softer than the bolt (such as studs in aluminum cylinder heads), and they are easier to assemble. It’s almost impossible to cross thread a coarse threaded fastener by hand.
For sizes smaller than 1/8″, the British adopted a Swiss Standard thread form for small screws and called it British Association Thread (BA). This thread form was adopted in 1903. Like the Whitworth form, it has rounded crests and roots, but the angle between adjacent faces of the screw’s threads Is 47 1/2°. Instead of being sized by fractions of an inch, they are numbered OBA, 1BA, 2BA and so on up to 22BA. For some reason, the larger the number, the smaller the screw. Other than that, the system is analogous to our “machine screw” system where numbers are used (e.g. #6, #8, #10).
A question often asked (well, once in a while anyway) is why didn’t the US adopt the Whitworth System? As it turns out, we did. By 1860, most of Europe and the US were using the system. In 1864, however, the move to establish a “National” thread system was under way. William Sellers was instrumental in persuading the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia to set up a committee whose prime goal would be to set up national (meaning American) standards. Sellers, who made machine tools, was dissatisfied with the Whitworth System on several points: The 55° angle was hard to gauge and the rounded threads caused an uncertain fit between the nut and bolt. He also argued that the rounded threads were weaker than a system he proposed where the angle between the opposing faces was 60° (not Whitworth’s 55°), and the crests and roots were flattened. The Franklin Institute adopted Seller’s system, and by 1900 it was in use throughout the US and much of Europe. The American system had both line and coarse threads called, logically enough, American National Fine (ANF) and American National Coarse (ANC).
The Whitworth system is further complicated by its tool size designations. American tools (and European for that matter) are sized by the head of the bolt or the size of the nut. A 1/2″ wrench fits a bolt with a head 1/2″ across. A Whitworth wrench is sized according to the diameter of the shank of the bolt, not the head. A 1/4 W (Whitworth) wrench is actually a bit larger than a 1/2″ American wrench—0.525″ to 0.500″. As if that wasn’t enough, in 1924 it was decided that the heads of the Whitworth bolts were too large, so they were down-sized.
The “new” bolts and nuts were made so that the old tools could still be used, but on different bolts. The old 3/8W wrench now fit the 7/16″ bolt. To enable the tools to be used easily, they are marked with both sizes. The old size, which stands for the diameter of the bolt’s shank, is marked with a “W”. The new size is marked with a “BS”, which stands for the bolt size and consequently the new wrench size. For example, the old 3/8W wrench also fits the “new” 7/16″ bolt and is therefore also marked “7/16 BS”. The head of the bolt it fits is 0.600″ across the flats, larger than 19/32″ but smaller than 5/8″. [I am so glad there isn’t a test at the end! Mark]
Because the wrenches are unique, there are no American counterparts. Use of the closest American wrench will often result in the rounding of corners and the springing of the wrench jaws.
The Whitworth System, with its associated BS thread system, was in use by British automobile manufactures until 1948, when Canada, the US, and the United Kingdom adopted a “Unified Thread System” that incorporated features of Seller’s and Whitworth’s systems. Actually, the push to standardize an international thread system was initiated during the First World War. The necessity for a system that both American and English manufactures could use was a direct result of the war effort. The fact that the allies shared much of the same machinery and equipment made interchangeable parts essential. The issue was the subject of various international conferences from 1918 to 1948, with the 2nd World War playing the role of catalyst for the adoption of the Unified system. The Unified System was adopted by the British automobile industry on a large scale in 1956, when most of the common fasteners on the cars built that year were of the Unified Thread System. The fact that the major market for these cars was in the US was no doubt a major factor in the decision. The Unified System is basically the same as the American system in use—the two thread systems were American National Coarse (ANC) and American National Fine (ANF). They became the Unified coarse and fine. A few related industries, notably SU, did not make the switch, and used Whitworth and BS hardware until they ceased production.
The Unified System was not destined to last. Having seen that everyone could change over from one system to another, the International Standards Organization launched a campaign to replace the Unified system with a version of the metric system that originated in Europe. It has been slow going. Since 1966 there has only been a partial changeover to the ISO metric system in the American and British automotive industries.
The Whitworth system should not be viewed as a stumbling block invented by the English to keep us from putting their cars back together again once we’ve managed to take them apart. I don’t believe it has anything to do with our minor disagreement back in 1776 either. The Whitworth system made it possible to manufacture complex machinery on a large scale, and it made it possible to work on that machinery without having a full-time clerk keeping track of the different nuts and bolts. Each system takes some special wrenches and sockets, and you might have to think for a minute or two about which wrench to use, but heck, if it were easy, anybody could work on these cars.
Four Morgan wire wheels for a 1963 Morgan +4 are available, if anyone is looking for wheels.
Email: Bryan@TatePartners.com if interested.
[I am not a Aero type but this is pretty! Enjoy, Mark]
It’s easy to spot a Morgan car in a line-up. The iconic vintage silhouette has nostalgic appeal, even if you aren’t especially motor-mad.
In a booming, increasingly tech-driven industry, these cars still speak to their roots. Established in 1910, the Morgan Motor Company is the oldest family-owned sports car manufacturer in the world.
But this legacy comes with a massive sense of responsibility. “There’s a real sense of stewardship running Morgan,” says chief executive Steve Morris, who took the helm in 2013.
Keeping our iconic shape allows people to relate to our cars, and strengthen our wider brand
“Having more than 100 years of experience in the automotive industry is a very powerful thing. Because of our history and where we’ve come from, we have a real sense of authenticity – and we really feel a responsibility to do our best for our audience.”
Though classic in style and handmade in the original factory in Malvern, these cars are all underpinned by modern automotive technology. This blend of old and new offers drivers an experience unlike any other. “Keeping our iconic shape allows people to relate to our cars and strengthen our wider brand,” says Mr Morris. “That’s very important.”
Road to success
Mr Morris joined the company aged 16 as a sheet metal apprentice, working his way up from the shop floor through to management. “There are many different routes into management, but I think I was very fortunate,” he says. “Being able to grow with Morgan, and having that grounding in the business itself, has helped me understand how the business ticks.”
I think in the next five years we’re going to see more change in the automotive industry than we’ve had in the past 100
Throughout his 35 years at the company, one thing that’s really stood out for Mr Morris is the loyalty of the customer base. “We’ve seen a lot of change but one of the fantastic things about working for Morgan has always been the friendliness of our wider audience,” he says.
“When you have that connection with them, they become your evangelists and your brand ambassadors.”
The business has tapped into this growing fan base. It now runs regular tours of the factory, which have been hugely successful. “We have 35,000 people paying to visit the factory each year. That in itself demonstrates a high level of enthusiasm for the brand – and that doesn’t happen overnight. That is part of our heritage.”
Wheels of change
But despite the dedicated customer base, being a niche manufacturer comes with a few challenges. “We’re still playing in an incredibly aggressive marketplace, with ever-changing technology,” says Mr Morris.
“I think in the next five years, we’re going to see more change in the automotive industry than we’ve had in the past 100, what with the onslaught of electrification, hybridisation and the pace of technology in general.
“At Morgan, we’re constantly trying to create and reinvent; I think we achieve that too. It’s interesting to talk to people who visit the factory regularly – even after a year’s interval, they’ll tell us how surprised they are at how things have changed.”
The Morgan Motor Company has seen more than a century of relentless change, though – and perhaps remaining true to its roots will ensure its survival. “I feel in some cases, we could be an ‘antidote’ to some of the things that are forced on the industry,” Mr Morris says.
“I’d like to think we’ll go from strength to strength, and we’ll continue to make cars that delight our customers.”
Melvyn Rutter (and his business) have always been big supporters of MOGSouth. Unfortunately, when our Newsletter died so did their advertisement.
Now Melvyn is back with a new advertisement on our website!
Melvyn’s advertisement provides a direct link to their main business website as well as a link to their extensive Morgan parts and maintenance services web site, https://mogparts.net. His new parts website offers online shopping, parts and accessories for the all Morgans, to include the newer cars and the M3Ws.
While we have a great set of US based club supporters providing much of what we need to keep our Morgans on the road, there are times when Melvyn and his UK based business are desperately needed. I have to admit I am a big fan.
Please go to http://www.mogsouth.com/supporters/ to see Melvyn’s new advertisement and follow the links to his websites.
[Ken and Pat Kreuzer are visiting the UK and attended the 2018 Morgan Motor Company’s Thrill on the Hill. They have also rented a more modern Plus 4 for their adventure.
Here are a few words on the event and be sure to view the great pictures from their MMC Factory visit and the from the event.
I am envious!! Mark]
FYI, The Plus 4 we are renting is fun. I have to fold back the hood to get in. At least its not held down by a dozen lift the dots and can be sealed from inside.
How many car companies would invite their customers, dealers, employees and local food and gift purveyors to a giant picnic at the factory? Morgan, the only privately owned car company in the UK did just that this August. Celebrating 50 years of the Plus 8, and, unfortunately the end of the naturally aspirated V8 engined sports cars, the show featured a year by year display of the model starting with the 1968 prototype brought over from the states.
The factory and some UK dealers showed a number of cars ready to empty one’s wallet. Factory tours were available and some of the things we found interesting were crates being prepared for shipping the engines for US dealers to install in new traditional cars now available to us for the first time in years and a alloy skinned body also ready to come here for someone’s classic four seater. In the same shops that hand made wood framed bodys are made, Morgan have installed a 3D printer for making prototypes of new parts.
Managing director Steve Morris and the heads of design and marketing gave a lively Q and A about the company while keeping information about new models up their sleeve.
Live music and fireworks capped off a unique automotive event.
Don’t miss Ken and Pat’s great pictures of the event. Click Here!
Ken and Pat Kreuzer
FIRST THINGS FIRST – Dorothy Needs to Know the following information for the Hotel, the Restaurant, the Hospitality Suite, etc.
Please send her an email to email@example.com or call 678-513-2931, (c) 404-678-4236. DO THIS NOW !!!
__(Check Mark for Yes) Staying at The Partridge Inn, 2110 Walton Way, Augusta GA 30904 – 706-737-8888
__(Check Mark for Yes) No hotel needed, NOT staying at the Partridge INN, but attending the Fall Meet
__(Check Mark for Yes)Bringing a Morgan
(If Yes) Year ________Model__________Color____________
__ Number of People for Dinner Saturday evening at The Cucina 503
Friday September 14, 2018
Hotel Arrival – The Partridge Inn, 2110 Walton Way, Augusta GA 30904
Hospitality Room – The Cigar Bar – First Floor of Hotel (opens at 3:00 pm) No smoking allowed!!!
Dinner Options – (FYI, if not driving, book the Hotel shuttle)
Evening Activities in Augusta
Saturday September 15, 2018
Breakfast – 6-10 AM, included with your Partridge Inn Room (or $12.99 if not a guest)
9:15 AM – ‘Group Photo’ on stairs at Inn Front Patio
9:30 AM – Depart for Washington, GA
11:15 Lunch Options
12:00 PM – 1:30 PM – Jones Auto Museum, 312 Thompson Hwy 25 Cars in Mr. J. Jones private museum and 50 more cars in his 2 other buildings, approx. 4 miles outside of Washington. Mr. Jones is opening his museum just for our group free of charge. He will leave the gate open to the gravel road up to his car barn. Collection began in 2005, restored Fords, Chevy 409, 55 Chevy Convertible, 70 Chevelle, 69 Chrysler Hemi, etc. Photos allowed, but requests they not be “splashed” all over the internet.
12:00 PM until whenever – if not going to Auto Museum
Afternoon in Augusta
Evening Activities in Augusta (after dinner)
Sunday September 16, 2018
Looking forward to seeing you all at The Partridge Inn!!
Glenn and Dorothy Moore
Photography by Troy Ziel, John H. Sheally, Bob Dunmore, and Patrick Brinton; courtesy of Tcherek Kamstra and Morgan Cars USA.
Hemmings Editor’s note: We’re pleased to be able to share the story of “Dolly,” the first prototype for Morgan’s Plus 8, a model devised a half-century ago that debuted at the 1968 Earls Court Motor Show, and would first come to the U.S. around 1971. From 1974 through 1992, it would be available here in limited numbers thanks to a propane fuel conversion that was devised by Bill Fink, principal of San Francisco, California’s Isis Motors Ltd., now called Morgan Cars USA. The Plus 8 was built in two series — the original Rover V-8-powered version of 1968-2004, and the BMW V-8-powered version of 2012-2018.
This piece was written by Tcherek Kamstra, sales and marketing director of Morgan Cars USA, and Bill’s stepdaughter.
‘Sixty-eight was an auspicious year for Morgan, and the man who would become the longest-standing Morgan dealer in the United States. American Morgan dealer Bill Fink became enamored with Morgans during his years spent rowing at Oxford. He bought his first car in London in 1962, and soon after taking possession, he drove it to the factory for the first of innumerable visits.
From this beginning, Bill’s enthusiasm grew so much that, by 1968, he was regularly selling Morgan parts to grateful owners all across the United States. He named his business Isis Imports, after the river he often rowed on while at Keble College.
When American laws made it seemingly impossible to meet the stringent requirements for importation, he figured out how to legally bring Morgans into compliance by converting them to run on propane. This process took years to develop and implement single-handedly, however Bill is a determined sort and has always had a talent for finding solutions when faced with a problem.
Having spent quite a bit of time figuring out how to make the propane idea work, Bill obtained parts in the USA and brought them over to England. He then converted a standard car in a borrowed workshop and drove the car straight to Malvern, in hopes that Peter Morgan would be interested. Not long before reaching the factory, a red Morgan started coming up behind him. Suddenly, the car pulled out and passed him. Sensing a bit of a challenge was being instigated, Bill sped up and passed the red car. Not to be outdone, this Morgan was soon in front of him again. The two cars continued this for about three miles, and when Bill pulled into the Morgan car park, the other Morgan zipped around the building, out of view.
Maurice Owen inspects a mock-up of the V-8 in an altered Morgan Plus 4 chassis.
Peter Morgan came out to look over Bill’s propane conversion. After some discussion, he said he would like his chief engineer to have a look at the car. Bill agreed, and was soon face-to-face with the driver of the red Morgan with which he’d just been having a bit of one-upmanship. That is how Bill met Maurice Owen, the man who would end up being one of his closest friends. The car Maurice had been driving that day was a Plus 4 he had modified using a V-8 engine. Its license plate read OUY 200E; this was the first prototype for Morgan’s newest model, the Plus 8, which would be introduced in 1968.
Development engineer Maurice Owen (in white) and Dolly.
With Bill’s solution for bringing new Morgans back to American approved by Peter Morgan, the two men shook hands, and Bill was now the official dealer for the United States. Visits to the factory were increasingly frequent, and the red prototype Plus 8 caught Bill’s eye, as it sat unused in a shed. Over the years, he asked Peter about the possibility of buying OUY and bringing her to the States. After a period during which a previously interested buyer didn’t finalize that car’s purchase, Peter told Bill it was to be his. A member of the staff scoffed a bit at the American who was silly enough to want the car, but want it he did, and in 1977, the purchase was made.
Bill at the wheel of Dolly.
So why did Morgan go down the V-8 path 50 years ago? The answer is quite simple. By the mid 1960s, Morgan’s relationship with Triumph was coming to an end because the new straight-six engine would not fit into the Plus 4. An alternative would have been a V-6 from the other long-term engine supplier to the company –Ford– but their engine was too tall to fit under the bonnet. Then came a phone call from Peter Wilks, a director of Rover, asking for a meeting in Malvern.
During the meeting, Peter Morgan was asked if there was any possibility that Rover might acquire Morgan in a friendly take-over. Peter was polite with his response, saying he was flattered, but they’d like to soldier on for a while as they were, thank you. Then, turning the tables on the man from Rover, he asked if there was any possibility that Morgan could acquire some of the V-8 engines that Rover had just started to build under license from Buick. They were light and compact and would just about fit into a Morgan. Wilkes responded that he thought this might be possible. Was this a bargaining ploy to sweeten the bitter pill of selling the company? We will never know, as a few months after the meeting, Rover was itself taken over by Leyland, the owners of Triumph. After some torturous negation, the agreement to provide the Rover 3.5-liter V-8 was confirmed, and production started in 1968.
The SU dashpot-clearing bonnet bulges that called to mind a famously endowed country singer, inspiring Dolly’s name.
Of course, obtaining the engine was just the start. It was just about the right size, but a special engineer was needed to squeeze it into the little Plus 4. Maurice Owen, an experienced racing engineer, was that man. He’d previously approached Peter Morgan, inquiring if he had any special projects in mind, so when the V-8 project arrived, he was appointed. He worked, mainly on his own, in the development shed at the back of the factory. He was a practical man, so work was often carried out first, and drawings done afterwards. He was left very much alone squeezing that engine into OUY, principally by stretching her chassis by two inches. Indeed, the first time he drove her out of the factory gates, it was just after midnight on a cold February  night; no one was watching.
Initially the car had a big Holley carburetor. After a drive at a Prescott test day, American driver Mike Virr, impressed by how quick she was by the standards of the day, said to Maurice, “You can’t sell this to little old ladies.” “Oh, that’s alright,” said Maurice, rubbing his hands. “We’ll just de-tune it a bit.” The car sprouted two SUs, with their distinctive covers, and became “Dolly.” All later cars, including the second prototype MMC11, did not have these appendages, as the engine was eventually mounted a bit lower.
Maurice and Dolly, here in racing trim with Bill’s preferred #61 livery. Dolly would be the only Plus 8 to run wire wheels.
Tcherek and Bill have told us that Dolly should be arriving in England now, traveling home by boat, for the first time in four decades to help celebrate the Plus 8’s anniversary. This car, driven by Bill, will participate in Morgan Motors’ annual “Thrill on The Hill” event, which begins with a car show jubilee at the factory in Malvern Link on Saturday, August 11, and culminates in the Prescott Hill Climb in Gloucestershire on Sunday, August 12. Also joining Dolly will be “MMC 11,” Morgan’s own 1968 Plus 8 that inspired the special 50th Anniversary Edition model; “AB 16,” Peter Morgan’s own Plus 8; “J 9546,” the final Plus 8; and “Plus 8 50th,” the first of those 50 cars built.
Steve Morris, managing director of the Morgan Motor Company, commented: “We’re excited to announce the return of Thrill On The Hill for 2018. Our annual Summer events have continued to prove popular among owners and enthusiasts alike, and we expect this year to be better than ever as we welcome visitors from around the world to celebrate 50 years of the Morgan Plus 8.
“I’m particularly excited that we are able to bring OUY 200E, the very first Plus 8, back to the UK from the USA specifically for the event. We look forward to seeing everyone on the 11th and 12th of August.”
It’s a weekend that no true Plus 8 fan will want to miss.