What did Morris get wrong originally?

Discuss anything Morris Minor related.

Moderator: Moderators

Edward1949
Minor Friendly
Posts: 50
Joined: Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:21 pm
MMOC Member: No

What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby Edward1949 » Thu May 09, 2019 2:23 pm

What would you ask for if you could have had a word in Issigonis's ear in the 1940s?
My input:
Dear Alec,
1. Make it simple to drop gearbox for clutch overhaul, as in most conventional RWD cars.
2. Better access to master cylinder please.
3. To alleviate the catastrophic consequence of worn bottom trunnion/suspension collapse (admittedly caused by neglect), how about extending the threaded bottom of suspension leg to emerge from a hole in the bottom of the lower trunnion, and a large nut attached. This nut would spend its life doing nothing at all (it would have a couple of mm of separation from the trunnion, with good anti-dirt seals, it would be under no pressure), but its moment of glory would come if the trunnion threads failed.

ianmack
Minor Addict
Posts: 618
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2014 7:02 pm
MMOC Member: Yes

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby ianmack » Thu May 09, 2019 3:32 pm

Definitely put the master cylinder on the bulkhead. I’d also like them to persevere with the flat four engine but that would need the ear of old Morris himself and I think he was getting a bit set in his ways by then.

philthehill
Minor Maniac
Posts: 6427
Joined: Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:05 pm
MMOC Member: Yes

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby philthehill » Thu May 09, 2019 5:15 pm

Whilst it would have been nice to have the brake master cylinder on the bulkhead it has to be remembered that a lot of the parts were sourced from other vehicles in the Nuffield group including the master cylinder. All done to keep costs down. I am certain a lot of things would have been done differently but parsimony was the order of the day.


ianmack
Minor Addict
Posts: 618
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2014 7:02 pm
MMOC Member: Yes

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby ianmack » Thu May 09, 2019 5:46 pm

But if brake parts were bought in the Girling type of bulkhead cylinder is much cheaper, around £25 today against £70 oddfor the Lockheed. I think the underfloor location was a carry over from the cross shaft arrangement of mechanical systems.

Or did Morris own Lockheed?

Monty-4
Minor Fan
Posts: 399
Joined: Sun Oct 26, 2014 7:17 pm
MMOC Member: Yes

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby Monty-4 » Thu May 09, 2019 6:18 pm

The rear torsion bar arrangement would have been fun, as well as the flat four.

Given the prevelance of smoking at the time they could have also made changing the headlining easier!
68' 4-door Saloon, another 'Monty'.

les
Minor Maniac
Posts: 7201
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2002 12:00 am
MMOC Member: Yes

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby les » Thu May 09, 2019 6:25 pm

Yes terrible design, how can something so wrong still be around around seventy years on!! :roll:


ianmack
Minor Addict
Posts: 618
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2014 7:02 pm
MMOC Member: Yes

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby ianmack » Thu May 09, 2019 6:38 pm

les wrote:
Thu May 09, 2019 6:25 pm
Yes terrible design, how can something so wrong still be around around seventy years on!! :roll:
Stephenson’s Rocket is still around but that doesn’t mean it has no room for improvement :D

Chipper
Minor Addict
Posts: 648
Joined: Thu Apr 26, 2007 11:43 pm
MMOC Member: No

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby Chipper » Thu May 09, 2019 6:47 pm

These features would be nice:

1. Make it easier to add extras to the dashboard.
2. Make more comfortable seats, particularly in the later versions (I gather some of the earlier leather seats were more comfy).
3. Tougher halfshafts (I've broken three, without trying too hard, all admittedly since fitting a 1275 engine :oops: ).
4. Better rear axle location (anti-tramp).
5. Collapsible steering column for safety - even a VW Beetle has one of these!
6. Better door/window seals.
7. Better rust resistance.
Maurice, E. Kent
(1970 Traveller)

SteveClem
Minor Legend
Posts: 1696
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 11:37 am
MMOC Member: Yes

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby SteveClem » Thu May 09, 2019 7:42 pm

Remember that these cars were built to an affordable price! All the desirable extras would have made them too expensive for their market. Most families in those days struggled to buy a couple of bikes!

simmitc
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 3545
Joined: Thu Apr 15, 2004 9:43 am
MMOC Member: Yes

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby simmitc » Thu May 09, 2019 8:44 pm

A greater separation between the bores of 1&2 and 3&4, particularly on the 1098, in an effort to reduce head gasket failure.

Improved heater control valve.

cococola
Minor Fan
Posts: 219
Joined: Sun Apr 21, 2013 10:30 pm
MMOC Member: Yes

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby cococola » Thu May 09, 2019 9:46 pm

Nothing to change..I love everything about my Morris Minor cars :D
Morris Minors..... such fun :D

pde2000
Minor Friendly
Posts: 79
Joined: Thu May 11, 2017 12:52 pm
MMOC Member: No

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby pde2000 » Thu May 09, 2019 10:44 pm

It's not so hard to get to the master cylinder really, you just put a jack under the torsion bar and push it up out of the way to access the bolts.
The earlier minors were dipped in a plating tank after the spot welding had been done so were relatively rust proof. When I scrape off some of the original paint the shiny tin is still mint.
Lord Nuffield on the other hand was a pompous old fart and wanted to stick with his old designs of separate chassis and running boards, so Alex did a great job getting most of his design past the board.
My beef is with Austin who released the A series engine without a proper oil filter (803cc) just as they merged with Morris.
Black 4door series2 deluxe 1954, mostly original, a bit tatty but reliable runner. purchased 1996

irmscher
Minor Legend
Posts: 3615
Joined: Wed Jul 14, 2010 10:53 am
MMOC Member: Yes

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby irmscher » Thu May 09, 2019 10:46 pm

Nothing I can think of :D

ManyMinors
Minor Legend
Posts: 1426
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2014 9:41 am
MMOC Member: No

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby ManyMinors » Fri May 10, 2019 8:08 am

pde2000 wrote:
Thu May 09, 2019 10:44 pm
It's not so hard to get to the master cylinder really, you just put a jack under the torsion bar and push it up out of the way to access the bolts.
The earlier minors were dipped in a plating tank after the spot welding had been done so were relatively rust proof. When I scrape off some of the original paint the shiny tin is still mint.
Lord Nuffield on the other hand was a pompous old fart and wanted to stick with his old designs of separate chassis and running boards, so Alex did a great job getting most of his design past the board.
My beef is with Austin who released the A series engine without a proper oil filter (803cc) just as they merged with Morris.
I agree that the master cylinder isn't SO much of an issue.
The steel quality used on the early cars was pretty good and I think even the first cars were rotated in the "Rotodip" paint tank but they certainly weren't "plated".
In the interest of accuracy, the brilliant designer was surely Alec. Not Alex :wink:
I feel that there was almost nothing "wrong" with the original car. It was a shame that the old plodding sidevalve engine had to be used but that was down to economics and quite honestly, having owned both in the past, I would rather have a sidevalve Minor than the Series11 803 motor which I agree was a poor thing :cry:

jaekl
Minor Fan
Posts: 414
Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2008 7:40 pm
MMOC Member: No

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby jaekl » Fri May 10, 2019 11:37 am

It's interesting that many of your objections are with post Issigonis changes. Or items that no one was even thinking of at the time, but nothing that were contemporary shortcomings.

Edward1949
Minor Friendly
Posts: 50
Joined: Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:21 pm
MMOC Member: No

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby Edward1949 » Fri May 10, 2019 12:38 pm

jaekl wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 11:37 am
It's interesting that many of your objections are with post Issigonis changes.

Fair point. Having owned a 1950 Lowlight many years ago ( ie as near to an unmolested Issigonis as it gets) I reckon it had the best interior of all, and the best mechanical refinement (if that's a word you can use about a Morris Minor :o ).

They could have made clutch replacement easier though, especially as clutch plate material was inferior then and needed more frequent attention.

pde2000
Minor Friendly
Posts: 79
Joined: Thu May 11, 2017 12:52 pm
MMOC Member: No

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby pde2000 » Fri May 10, 2019 6:23 pm

ManyMinors wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 8:08 am
I agree that the master cylinder isn't SO much of an issue.
The steel quality used on the early cars was pretty good and I think even the first cars were rotated in the "Rotodip" paint tank but they certainly weren't "plated".
In the interest of accuracy, the brilliant designer was surely Alec. Not Alex :wink:
I feel that there was almost nothing "wrong" with the original car. It was a shame that the old plodding sidevalve engine had to be used but that was down to economics and quite honestly, having owned both in the past, I would rather have a sidevalve Minor than the Series11 803 motor which I agree was a poor thing :cry:
In the sales brochure the process is described as rustproofing. I did have a book on the history of the minor, with an image of the tank that had the whole monocoque submersed in solution.
Attachments
20190510_180354.jpg
20190510_180354.jpg (639.49 KiB) Viewed 704 times
20190510_180222 (1).jpg
20190510_180222 (1).jpg (678.28 KiB) Viewed 704 times
Black 4door series2 deluxe 1954, mostly original, a bit tatty but reliable runner. purchased 1996

RobThomas
Minor Legend
Posts: 2531
Joined: Thu May 11, 2006 10:34 am
MMOC Member: Yes

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby RobThomas » Fri May 10, 2019 6:54 pm

Better wheel bolts with the 'correct sized' heads.
Triangulated top suspension links.
ore adjustment to the door hinges.
Better strength on the B-post corner with the waist rail to stop cracks.
Better seatbelt mount design on 2-doors.
Better sealing of the aft corner of the front wings to keep rust away.
More access to the rear nut on the M-cylinder.
Locks outside BOTH doors.
Longer Eyebolt threads.
Cardiff, UK

ManyMinors
Minor Legend
Posts: 1426
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2014 9:41 am
MMOC Member: No

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby ManyMinors » Fri May 10, 2019 6:59 pm

pde2000 wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 6:23 pm
ManyMinors wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 8:08 am
I agree that the master cylinder isn't SO much of an issue.
The steel quality used on the early cars was pretty good and I think even the first cars were rotated in the "Rotodip" paint tank but they certainly weren't "plated".
In the interest of accuracy, the brilliant designer was surely Alec. Not Alex :wink:
I feel that there was almost nothing "wrong" with the original car. It was a shame that the old plodding sidevalve engine had to be used but that was down to economics and quite honestly, having owned both in the past, I would rather have a sidevalve Minor than the Series11 803 motor which I agree was a poor thing :cry:
In the sales brochure the process is described as rustproofing. I did have a book on the history of the minor, with an image of the tank that had the whole monocoque submersed in solution.
The rustproofing carried out at the factory was simply rotating the body in a tank of primer which was known as the "Rotodip" process as I referred to earlier. This ensured that every square inch and nook and cranny was covered in an anti-rust primer and it probably went some way to help give the cars a longer life. This is a simple but effective way of applying a coat of paint but it is not "plating". Many early MMs still became very rusty within a decade or so - including the "first Morris Minor" now displayed in the Gaydon museum which was rebuilt around a new bodyshell after about 12 years use due to serious rust.

pde2000
Minor Friendly
Posts: 79
Joined: Thu May 11, 2017 12:52 pm
MMOC Member: No

Re: What did Morris get wrong originally?

Postby pde2000 » Fri May 10, 2019 7:23 pm

I had a look at that rotodip reference and found this http://www.austinmemories.com/styled-34/index.html
It seems the chemistry was to help the primer stick to the steel. I always assumed the shiny steel that was revealed when the rubber underseal was broken away was a tin plate. Before i had mine resprayed there had been a botched attempt at fitting a new windscreen following a broken pane of glass, and a large sheet of black paint had come away with the sticky tape that held the temporary plastic cover, revealing a yellow/cream primer that was very tough.

Anyway this car has survived better than others i have had, without any special care.
Black 4door series2 deluxe 1954, mostly original, a bit tatty but reliable runner. purchased 1996


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests