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2018 GTA Polar Bear Run was a Blast! 
by the Georgia Triumph Club - Jan 1, 2019

Holiday Party - 2018
Approximately 57 PMGR members attended the annual Holiday Party at Parkers on Ponce on December 9th.

Theresa Gaffney received a special award from the North American MGB Registry for her article entitled "Driving Miss Eloise".  Kathy and Jack Orkin also won an award for being the "Champion of Useless Knowledge", an annual honor bestored on those who get the highest score on Mike Cook's trivia contest held each month at the monthly member meeting.  

The food was great, as always, and the company was excellent! 

2018 Holiday Party

November Tech Session

On Saturday, November 10, Reinout and Henneke Vogt sponsored MG Day with several activities for all, ladies and gentlemen, drivers of As, Bs, and T-Series MGs, and their navigators.  The day started at the Vogt's home in Decatur at 10AM.


Tech Session

We talked about the different types of car lifts and why Reinout decided on the four-post Atlas 408. We then rotated some MGs on the lift to check out any problems or just to inspect suspension, exhaust, brakes etc.  Barry Rosenberg, PMGR's professional british car expert, made some needed adjustments to cars, as well.

Tech Session, Nov.18, 2018


Some of the ladies made blankets for cancer patients of the Cheyenne River Reservation in South Dakota.  Their neighbor and retired nurse, Annie, worked with the tribal health program for eight years. The community of incredibly strong and resilient people survives on one of the lowest income per-capita in the United States. Cancer patients frequently travel four hours to reach a facility for their chemotherapy.  A “comfort” quilt helps to keep them warm on the long trip as well as during the treatments, which may last several hours. 



The previous owner of the Vogt's house left a 50 yard zip-line in the backyard. Reinout installed a seat and a safety brake to make it safe for multiple thrill rides.

At about 12:30, we departed for a little driving tour.  
We took a direct route to Stone Mountain and worked our way back on some of the hilly and winding DeKalb County roads. There were a few challenges or questions along the way before we got to Avondale and our reserved parking spot in downtown Decatur. 



We had a late lunch and drinks at Victory Sandwich Bar at 340 Church Street, Decatur, GA 30030, 

MG Day was a great event and many thanks to Reinout and Henneke for a fun, useful day.

Fall Tour - 2018

Once again, Rick and Margery Hartlein produced a wonderful Fall Tour. For a change, we headed west to Lake Guntersville State Park Lodge near Huntsville, Alabama. The group increased in numbers after departing North Point Mall, as some decided to meet the tour enroute.  We headed west via Rt 140 to our lunch stop in Mentone, AL.

We lunched at a wonderfully funky Wildflower Café. After an enjoyable al fresco lunch in the back garden of the restaurant, we took time to browse around the town. . Mentone was, at one time, the home of the Mentone Springs Hotel, established in the 1880s around 3 mineral springs that promised healing powers. It is also the home of Camp Juliet Lowe founded in 1920 by the Girl Scouts of America.

We departed Mentone to continue our journey west through what is left of the Piedmont range in Alabama, giving us interesting 
roads and some wonderful Fall vistas. Perhaps the best part of the ride was traveling on Rt 67 along the east coast of the Lake Guntersville shoreline.  Although the State Lodge has been there quite a few years and Rick suggested we shouldn’t expect a 5 star hotel, we found our rooms neat and clean with a wonderful view of the lake shoreline.


We gathered at the hospitality room to munch on cheese and crackers and sip a brew or two before heading over to the Lodge for dinner. Dining at the Lodge was a raucous affair, as the room filled with families hunkering down to the “all you can eat” seafood buffet” while many of us chose to select from the menu. The food was enjoyable and the service was upbeat and filled with Alabama enthusiasm. Many of us returned to the hospitality room to kill more brain cells before drifting off to bed.

Reinout Vogt was in contact with Jeff Powers, in Huntsville, who recently purchased an MG-M and invited us visit his collection. With the Reinout's yellow Corvette in the lead, a small group of us headed to Huntsville on a sunny Saturday morning. An hour later, we pulled up to a non-descript building in the heart of Huntsville, the home of Jeff Power’s eclectic collection of cars. oup of us headed to Huntsville on a sunny Saturday morning. An hour later, we pulled up to a non-descript building in the heart of Huntsville, the home of Jeff Power’s eclectic collection of cars.
Packed to the gills in the converted service shop was a wide variety of British and micro-cars. The list ranges from his recently purchased 1934(?) M to a Lotus Evora with something of everything in between. Jeff’s approach seems to be to ac- quire cars that have both a meaning to him and a story to tell. As he lifted the dust cover from each car he told each story as a loving memory. Some cars have personal memories for him, others held a memory for him of the people he acquired them from.  It's a personal collection to warm the heart of all of us who love cars.

After lunch at one of the may brew pubs in the historic quarter of Huntsville we headed back to the lodge to get refreshed before Dinner.  Then we traveled as a group into the town of Guntersville for our evening meal at the Aqua, a seafood restaurant located on the main drag behind the Wyndham Hotel, overlooking the water.

Sunday, we broke into smaller groups to head back home via routes that best suited our varied destinations.  Many followed along the "Trail of Tears" historic route through Alabama and into Georgia.

Thanks again to Rick and Margery for another fine Fall Tour.

October ORF -
The ORF Tour held on Wednesday the 17th of October was well attended. Participants included, Larry Norton, Erich Starzinger, Jay Franklin, Tom George, Laura and Roy Oppendisano, Joe Rushing, Bruce Kosbab, Wally Carlisle, Tom Nadelhoffer and Joe Tew. We had 3 MGB roadsters, 4 MGBGT’s, 2 MGA roadsters, and 1 Triumph Spitfire in the group.

There was a light rain falling as we met at the Dawsonville IHOP for breakfast @ 08:30. The rain stopped after breakfast and just in time for our 09:15 tire kicking, lie-telling, and drivers meeting in the parking lot. Bruce was the only one who braved the elements by going topless. His MGA looked very sporty with the full tonneau cover in place.

We departed the IHOP parking lot @ 09:30 for our final destination of Chatsworth, GA. We negotiated some twisty back roads from IHOP to downtown Dawsonville. At the historic square in Dawsonville we picked up HWY 53W towards Jasper, Ga. After a few miles on HWY 53 we came to the newly installed roundabout where we picked up HWY 183 towards Ellijay. (Roundabouts appear to be the newest fad for the Georgia, as-well-as most of the local county DOT’s). After 10 miles on HWY 183 we came to the intersection with HWY 52. There was DOT construction taking place…..probably another roundabout!! We took HWY 52 toward Ellijay. This took us through Georgia’s “Apple Country”.  We were running a little ahead of schedule for our bio break in Ellijay so I made the decision to make an unplanned stop at one of the apple barns/shops along the way.  Everyone has their favorite apple barn/ shop to stop at and mine is Reese’s. They have a great variety/selection of apples to choose from and other apple products like apple stuffed pastries and apple donuts!

After a short shopping spree at Reese’s we saddled up and got back on HWY 52 for a scheduled bio-break in downtown Ellijay. We made a short stop in Ellijay, where Tom George joined the group, and we got back on HWY 52 for our lunch stop at the Village Cafeteria in Chatsworth, GA. HWY 52 between Ellijay and Chatsworth was a twisty, curvy route with numerous elevations changes taking us through parts of Gilmer and Murray counties, the Chattahoochee National Forest and over Fort Mountain which peaks at 2,850 feet. There are several overview pull outs that provide excellent views of not only the valley below, but also views of the Cohutta Mountain range. We reached Chatsworth, GA on schedule around noon for lunch at the Village Cafeteria.

The food at the Village Cafeteria is very good and the service is quick and friendly. They have ample seating for groups our size. In fact, they have just completed renovating and expanding their facility. This was our third ORF run to the Village Cafeteria with great results!! The group split up after lunch. While several participants headed for home, the rest of the group headed for Barry Rosenberg’s new shop located at 85 Oak Morris Ridge in Jasper, GA. After a short drive on back roads from Chatsworth, we picked up HWY 136 E which took us through Talking Rock, GA and on to Burnt Mountain Road in Jasper, GA and from there to Barry’s shop.

Barry continues to upgrade and improve his new shop. The most notable improvements this visit were a shiny new lift, a neat and tidy parts room, but probably the most appreciated improvement was the renovated bathroom with a working commode!! Barry had 2 TR6’s, a Bug-eye Sprite, a Triumph Spitfire and an MGB-GT in his shop in various stages of repair and/or renovation. 

Tech Session - Engine Rebuild by Barry Rosenberg

The subject engine had been previously prepped and made ready for assembly, as I knew time would not allow an entire rebuild in one session.

The engine had been bored .030” over and the rings fitted to the bores and pistons. However, the set of rings that came with the .030” pistons must have been for a set of .020” pistons because the ring gap was over .037” -- Correct gap is .012” to .017”. New rings had been ordered and installed although one was left off the piston to explain how to gap a ring. Cam bearings had also been installed as they are the first thing to go into an engine and their installation is very critical. If you get them in wrong, the rocker arm on the MGB engine will not get oil. I have seen this before.

I first installed the crank using petroleum jelly as my lubricant, explaining that it will stay on the bearings as long as the owner wants to let the engine sit. Then, a normally simple job, to install the crank thrust washers. I start off with standard size and measure end play. Knowing the end play I want is .004” to .006”, an easy calculation tells me how much oversize I need to go on thrust washers. Unfortunately, I could not get the standard set in.  45 minutes was wasted sanding new thrust washers to fit the engine and allow the crank to rotate freely. 

Next was piston fitment and a showing of different ring compressors. Again, petroleum jelly lubricated my bearings and the entire piston sides. Next came the camshaft, stock for an early MG engine with mechanical tach drive, but put into this later engine. Then the cam timing was set with the gears, timing chain and tensioner.

A new water pump was to be installed; but, first, I wanted everyone to see that the new water pumps are not like to original ones. The flange for the pump pulley to bolt to is in the wrong location in comparison to the old pump. Craig showed and fixed the pump to match the original unit. So far in this rebuild we had wrong rings with right pistons; incorrectly made thrust washers and a poorly assembled water pump.

One of the things I talked about is that I do not install my oil pump until the head is on and valves adjusted the first time. So, we installed the already assembled head. Two valves were left out for demonstration and pointing out the incorrectly installed hardened seats (set too deeply in the head). Then the lifters were coated with the proper cam lube and petroleum jelly then installed in the bores. They had been previously test fitted. The head was torqued and the valves adjusted.

Then, I talked about the modification I make to the oil pumps for better pressure, packed it with my jelly and installed it. We did not get the pan on that Saturday due to time management on my part. There had been too much talking and answering questions and not enough work being done. But it was supposed to be a teaching process and that requires me to answer all questions.

Sometimes during the day, Tom Nadelhoffer and Larry Norton became cooks and servers and made lunch of burgers, dogs, buns, beans and chips. Thank you for your help. Tom Bosko did a video of the session and after the second time doing so; I am still not comfortable working in front of the camera. I have no fear of the camera, but I fail to remember it is there and that it can show great detail when I am pointing out something small but important, such as the dot indicating the top side of the rings. Maybe by the time I do another tech session next year I will get better.

Ron Human, whose engine it was, came by Monday to finish the assembly and paint it. That went without any problems. The engine was painted a Damask red as original and left overnight to dry. And I must say, it looked great; pictures included I hope. You may not be ready to build your own engine but at least now, you know somewhat of what it takes to do. You can understand how long it takes to do it right. And there is never any reason not to do it right.

We pull the engine, take it apart, measure everything necessary, clean the parts not going to the machine shop, order the parts, take all items to the machine shop and make a return trip to get them when done, assemble the parts with the new pieces, assemble the engine, paint it pretty with a hardened acrylic enamel, install it, get it running, and then tune it. And, we only bill for 35 hours on a four cylinder engine. Sixes are slightly more. Those of you that came Saturday, know what I am talking about.


The monthly ORF today was another chilly one -- 18 degrees near Suches, where we stopped to join with Tim Gaffney and take a break -- but, the sun shone brightly and the view of the snow covered mountain tops was exquisite!  Unfortunately, at 60 MPH while running the mountain "twisties", it's difficult to manage a cell phone camera to capture the moment -- so nobody did.  We had 11 cars running the excellent route -- thanks again to Tom Nadelhoffer.  Additional ORFs were: Larry Norton, Mike Cook, Jim Doran, Jay Franklin, Jeff Adams, Manny Gil, Jim Unger, Wally Carlisle, and Steve Ratcliffe Our morning target was the Cajun Depot Grill in Ellijay, GA, where Paul Van de Walker joined us for lunch.. The Cajun Depot Grill is inexpensive and the food is good. It's definitely a "do again" place. With the temperature all the way up to about 38 degrees and the wind at 10 knots, we headed home at about 2PM through Dawsonville. Fun trip, good time!