More on replacement RV8 hoods
Lane (Oxford Blue 0855) from Andover recently had a number of replacement hoods
fitted and found discrepancies. (July 07)
My earlier RV8NOTE262 highlighted a problem I had found with replacement
hoods for the RV8 - there are two types of hood frame! From my further investigations
I have been able to assemble more information on the points fellow RV8 enthusiasts
should consider very carefully when contemplating a hood replacement. The information
here is based on my experiences with three replacement hoods - it has been
a frustrating and puzzling time!
First replacement hood
first new hood was purchased against the original Part No ZKC5279 via eBay
from a well-known MG supplier - MG Services Heathrow. Fitting by the supplier
was not available at that time but they suggested that I arrange this with a local
coach trimmer, which I did. The hood was delivered promptly in secure packaging
and the quality looked good. The local trimmer fitted the hood but found it was
very tight across the width and sat too high above the side glass, so much so
that water easily entered the cockpit and flooded the foot wells. Following a
period to allow the erected new hood to settle on the frame, the fit did not improve.
I spoke with the supplier and offered to take the car to MG Services Heathrow
but I was advised to take it to the original manufacturer - Coventry Hood and
Tonneau at Telford.
Second replacement hood
and Tonneau fitted another one from their stock with very similar results. During
that work it became apparent that RV8 hood frames varied in head clearance. Once
they realised that it was not the fault of my local coach trimmer they then said
another hood (No 3) would need to be specially made to suit my hood frame. This
was to be fitted at a later date. At this point I chose the blue fabric.
Third replacement hood
A third replacement hood in a blue material
was then manufactured to measurements taken from my hood frame and I returned
to have it fitted at the Telford CHT works. This time the hood was fitted without
any problems and there were much better results. The good news is CHT has assured
me that they now know what to do to overcome these hood size variances.
Whilst I did not have to pay additional costs for the hoods, unfortunately I lost
two days travelling to Telford and back from Andover and the expense had to be
for my account. So I cannot say the first and second hoods were defective as they
were well made - they just did not fit the frame on my RV8! I notice the eBay
advert posted by MG Services Heathrow now covers the variable hood frame difficulty
by requiring you to provide the key dimensions of the existing hood with your
So three conclusions for fellow RV8 enthusiasts considering
a replacement RV8 hood
Hood and Tonneau at Telford seem well worth dealing with if you need a replacement
hood as they did a good job fitting a good quality replacement hood to Mike's
RV8. They now know what to do to overcome these hood size variances.|
MG Services Heathrow adverts for RV8 replacement hoods on eBay now seek the
key dimensions of your existing hood with your order so they can supply a
hood which will fit your hood frame. The present link is worth visiting so long
as the present stocks last. Link
It is advisable to use the original hood as a pattern for any replacement
if the existing hood on your RV8 is a good fit and does not leak.
would there be two hood types?|
It has been suggested that following the
launch of the RV8, MG Rover received complaints of poor height clearance from
some RV8 owners. Certainly there were a number of comments in the years immediately
after the launch that the headroom in the RV8 could be a difficulty for some tall
people until the leather seats had settled a little. Well following those complaints
it seems MG Rover introduced a higher hood frame but they did not change the
frame part number. I am not sure how true this is as my initial investigations
indicate that cars manufactured well after my RV8 (VIN 0855) have the lower (presumably
the original pattern?) hood frame. However I am aware that the cars did not actually
pass down the production line in correct chassis number order so the exact change
point for the new hood frame in terms of chassis number may not be certain.
How can we check whether there are two hood frame sizes?
hood frame serial number plate is another useful piece of information and
I am hopeful it may be possible to identify the Tickford serial number change
point for the higher hood frame. The serial number can generally be found between
the offside outer hood side frame and the hood (in the area adjacent with the
headrest) and is better seen if the hood is semi-erect and slack. Dr Gavin
Bailey has commented "the Tickford labels are often missing from the
hood frames as they are only lightly glued on" so you may find you cannot
determine the serial number of your hood frame.
Serial number on the Tickford label. (Photo: Mike Lane)
So what are the costs of a replacement RV8 hood?
costs on the MG Services Heathrow advert on eBay as at 27th July 2007 are set
First replacement hood
was purchased against the original Part No ZKC5279 via eBay from a well-known
MG supplier (MG Services Heathrow). Fitting was not available at that time and
they suggested that I arrange this with a local coach trimmer, which I did. The
hood was quickly delivered in secure packaging and the quality looked good. The
local trimmer fitted the hood but found it was very tight across the width and
sat too high above the side glass, so much so that water easily entered the cockpit
and flooded the foot wells. Following a period to allow the erected new hood to
settle on the frame, the fit did not improve. (Photo: Mike Lane)
Near side screen fixing press-stud was too short on the first replacement
hood on Mike Lane's car. (Photo:
Second replacement hood
was another stock hood supplied and fitted by the original manufacturer,
Coventry Hood & Tonneau via MG Services Heathrow, with very similar results.
(Photo: Mike Lane)
Third replacement hood (blue) fitted by the Coventry Hood
& Tonneau at their Telford works is a much better fit along the top edge of
the nearside window and on the back edge of the nearside window glass by the press-stud.
(Photo: Mike Lane)
Near side screen fixing press-stud on the third hood fits much better and provides
essential weather protection. (Photo: Mike Lane)
Good weather seal between
the side window and hood
Mike has also noted many replacement hoods have
additional small extension pieces fitted so that the lower side press studs can
engage. He also notes that some cars have a tight hood material to door glass
fit on one side of the car but not on the other whilst others have a gap all round
on both sides of the car. Further investigation on this point has resulted in
a discrepancy being noted between one side to the other of about 10 mm in the
diagonal dimension between the centre of the lower side press-stud and the top
corner of the screen frame. This may account for the near side screen fixing press-stud
being too short on my car. But more data is needed to understand how just how
widespread this problem may be.
What an experience - three replacement
hoods to get one that would fit!
Looking back on his experience, Mike
comments "all I wanted was a replacement
hood with a good fit a hood of the same quality as the original".
Sadly it took three hoods and a great deal
of time to get there but at least we now have a recommended RV8 replacement hood
supplier and fitter.
Webpage posted: 27.7.07