Drop link failure on an MGBGTV8
Alan McLean launched a V8BB thread saying "the drop link on the driver's side of my V8 snapped clean off at the joint were the rod meets the U shaped bracket. I have ordered a replacement pair which should arrive before the weekend. My question is, I seem to remember reading an article somewhere about this as been a known weak point on the drop link and that some additional welding around this joint solves the issue. Does anyone know of this?" He later added "my concern was that with having a beefier anti roll bar fitted (7/8") that it was putting more pressure on the drop link and that's what caused it to snap off."

Geoff King responded "I’ve had a 7/8” ARB for the last ten years or so [on my V8 Roadster] and while the drop links are adjustable with rose joints the U shaped end is as standard and has never been a problem. Having said that the weld looks virtually non-existent and is possibly a friction welded during manufacture. T
hey are Part Nos. AHH6543A and AHH6544A."

Bill McCullough added "I experienced the same problem on one occasion, but the failure occurred within five miles of the links installation, I presumed it was an isolated example of bad welding.
I rewelded the offending link by disconnecting it at the anti roll bar and swivelling it down to provide access for a MIG welder - don't forget to disconnect your battery if you adopt this approach, electric welders can 'severely damage your cars electrics' if the battery remains connected during the welding."

Anthony Wotherspoon then highlighted that "Moss mention [on their website] about putting an extra weld on the drop links when you look into the item description. But to me surely you would just manufacture the item correctly in the first place?" The link to the Moss webpage was found - the text on that webpage is:

It is recommended that the joint between the upper link and main stem should be strengthened with weld on the standard links. Full competition cars can use rose-jointed links; these are easily adjustable on the car to allow last-minute tuning.

Victor Smith added "looking at the webpage with the link [provided by Geoff King], is Moss indicating that for an MGBGT and MGBGTV8 the "LINK, Outer, Competition/Rose Jointed" item is their replacement part?" See an extract from their webpage below.

Geoff King responded "MGS30791 is an alternative and interchangeable replacement for the standard AHH6543A/AHH6544A. It is similar but not identical to the drop links I have it on my car as part of the John Hoyle tubular double wishbone coil over damper front suspension."

He added "I wonder if there is anyone with an RV8 willing to share the details of the drop link fitted to their car. I know it is different to the MGB/V8 but the suspension is very similar and it would be interesting to see what MGRover changed."

Alan McLean then sent a couple of photos of his damaged drop link to the V8 Webmaster which are included on the first of the documents below.
Gordon Hesketh-Jones reported a few weeks later he had ordered a pair of RV8 drop links and had successfullu fitted them to his MGBGTV8. His note was "as a high-mileage MGBGTV8 user I become paranoid when I hear about basic parts involved in safety failing in service without giving any prior warning - for example as soon as the reports started coming about brake servo failures some years ago, I had a brand new one fitted together with all new pipes for the brake fluid. The recent failure of a drop link on a factory V8GT reported in the V8 Bulletin Board was scary, so Ron Gammons' comments stating that the basic RV8 version was far sturdier and stronger but that the fixing the dimensions were virtually identical to those of the MGBV8GT, convinced me to go ahead.

Interestingly, none of the usual MG suppliers had the RV8 version available, but B&G had them in stock and they arrived here in Cornwall quite quickly. Fitting was quite easy - except for the fact that one of the original drop links could not be extracted from the new spring pan (fitted just five years ago), so the pan had to be removed and introduced to an oxy-acetylene torch. After fitting the track was re-checked and there had been no change. To be fair, the original drop-links fitted by Abingdon had lasted for 420K miles and showed no visible signs of cracking, but you can't be too careful!" So confirmation they can be fitted.

For information see the five documents available on the V8 Website via the links below:

Drop link on an MGBGTV8
Extract from the MGB Workshop Manual AKD3259 showing the anti-roll bar link together with the photos provided by Alan McLean. More

Comparison of two drop links

Additional photos from Alan McLean who says the "drop links were ordered as a set (left and right) from the same supplier but as I said in my posting on the V8BB they are like chalk and cheese as regards quality and finish as you can plainly see." More

Drop link on an RV8
Extracts from the RV8 Repair Manual AKM7153ENG and the RV8 Parts Manual showing the anti-roll bar link on an RV8. More

MGBGTV8 and RV8 drop links compared
Photos and a note from Ron Gammons. More

Broken drop link removed from the car
Alan McLean shows the fracture. More
Updated: 130812

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