It’s amazing how quickly an engine will go together once you have all the parts ready. Having a little knowledge helps as well so my engine will likely take longer to reassemble than it really should but I’m getting smarter all the time! I installed the pistons today and it went reasonably smoothly but will of course will be quicker next time.

So what did I learn? Primarily that the Grant piston rings that I bought for the MGB are easy to install once you know the technique. I purchased one of those cheap piston ring spreaders and they do a great job of fitting the rings into the groove once you get used to them. The only issue I had was installing the 2 rings and the oil control ring in the lower groove. I made the mistake of putting one of the iron rings on first and then the oil control ring is too thick. Of course, if I had researched this better beforehand I would have known with the Grant piston rings you put the oil control ring on first and then the lower and upper rings sit on top of the oil control ring. Once I had this figure out life was easy, a few minutes per piston.

Grant oil control ring for MGB
Grant oil control ring for MGB
MGB Grant piston rings installed
MGB Grant piston rings installed

My cheapo piston ring compressor worked well at compressing the piston rings and getting oil all over the place. I figure too much oil won’t hurt and too little could be an issue. Make sure the piston is in the right bore and facing the right direction and a few taps with a wooden hammer handle and the pistons slide in easily. This is good.

Installing MGB GT pistons
Installing MGB GT pistons

And here we have it, all 4 pistons installed, moving freely and ready to have the connecting rod caps tightened up to 33 ft lbs. Easy peasy.

MGB pistons are installed
MGB pistons are installed
MGB engine lower end back together
MGB engine lower end back together with a little blood for colouring

There is not much more to do down here except for installing the oil pump and wiping the blood off the inside of the engine. I’m sure bloods a good lubricant but I’ll remove it even if it does match the colour of the block. I’ll have the oil pan on soon, it will be great to finally seal the MGB engine up again.

 

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