Sometimes, in fixing a problem, you make it worse.

As I mentioned in my earlier post, the idler screw kept working itself from where I set it (about 900 RPM) to nearly wide open at 2,800 RPM. That’s not good on the motor, not to mention my nerves. I’d take her out for a short while and she’d find herself idling too fast.

After consulting with “experts”, I decided to put a dab of Loctite on the threads. In their expert opinions, “That oughta hold it”. I got back from NAPA with the product in hand. I popped up the hood/bonnet and fired up the engine. With screwdriver in hand, I gave a light turn to the idler screw and…


The head of the idler screw separated itself from the rest of the screw. There were curse words to follow. Then, I shut the hood, shut off the engine, and considered for the 40th time why I have a Little British Car. Then, I watched some pretty good playoff football games.

Idler Screw

Today, it was 65F degrees and sunny in the late afternoon. I fired her up and drove to my friend’s shop, never idling less than 2,500 RPM. On the other hand, I had her up to a speed in excess of the posted limits, so there is that.

I removed the air filters and got the nut and body of the screw off the carb mounts. Then, I drove home, again at 2,500 RPM. But, with the wind in my hair and the sun on my skin. I will try to see if there is a match at our local Ace hardware store. Otherwise, I’ll order at $0.75 bolt and nut from Moss Motors and pay $12.00 in shipping.

Hey, I got 2 days of driving my MGB in January. That can’t be all bad.