Pull Handle MGB Door Part 1-Exterior

Author: A. Henderson
These doors were used on MGBs until approximately Car #57100.  However,  there are some later recorded examples of cars numbered into the 59000s with pull handle doors.  It is likely that the official change point recorded did not include all bodies built, and as there were significant changes to the B posts and doors themselves, earlier bodies which may have been delayed at Pressed Steel may have been completed after the official change point.  #59195 in Iris Blue is 1 example of a later car.
No MGB GTs were factory built with pull handle doors.
The following photos document most of the unique features of a pull handle door.   The pull handle vent window frame will be examined in a subsequent article.
Features identified include: 

Pull handle Outer Handle
Pull handle Rubber Door Buffer
Pull handle Door Lock Cylinder


Most parts to repair the pull handle latches are available as kits from Moss Motors.  Early door lock cylinders using the Wilmot Breeden FP series keys are unavailable.

Early MGB Keys

Author: A. Henderson
The earliest of the MGBs used
keys supplied by Wilmot Breeden in the “FP” series as per the MGA.  The keys
were either round headed, or rectangular in body shape.  Ignition locks using
the “FP” series of keys had the key number stamped on the face of the ignition
lock cylinder, and on the latching part of the trunk lock cylinder, and on the
barrel of the door lock cylinders.  Key #s were also clearly stamped on one face
of the key.
Later MGBs   used the Wilmot
Breeden “FS” series of key.  It is possible that some cars may have received
sets of “FS” series keys prior to totally exhausting the supply of “FP” series
keys.  The latest car which I know received “FP” series keys had a car number
of 11,100 approx.  Later MGBs were supplied with “FS” series keys to the end of
production in 1980. “FS” series keys could be round headed, pentagon headed, or
Although it is possible to
key all of the Mk 1 MGB locks to operate with a single key, all were supplied
with 2 different keys of different code, probably so that an ignition key could
be left at a parking or service facility while enabling the driver to lock his
trunk and glovebox.
FP lock cylinders are
extremely difficult to source, as the trunk and door lock cylinders are unique
to the very early MGB. 
There are few sources for
original “FP” keys.
Photo Caption 1:    The 2
variants of the “FP” key
Photo Caption 2:    FP keys
beside the pentagon shaped FS later key.

Early MGB Key Fobs

Author: A. Henderson
The Mk 1 MGB was delivered
with leather samples to match the primary interior colour attached to two of the
factory supplied keys, 1 each of the ignition and door keys.  These samples were either black, blue or red.  The
originals have a silver stamped “MG” octagon on one side and “Real English
Leather is Used in this Upholstery ” on the other side.  Some replacement ones I
happened across are accurate as to leather colour but use a gold stamping for
the printing.
It is unknown as to when the
practice of shipping original keys with leather fobs installed was discontinued,
but before the start of Mk 2 MGB production.  It is believed that these fobs
were also shipped with the MGA.
Photo 1:  Unused Replacement
Single Key Leather Fobs
Photo 2:  The original fob in
blue to match the leather used only in iris blue cars
Photo 3:  The stamping on the
reverse side of an original fob.

Early Body Colour Rear Bumper Corner Fillers

Author: A. Henderson
To Car #28264 approx. Jan 64
The first several years of
MGB production used a painted, body colour filler between the corner of the rear
bumper and the body.  This is attached by 4 posidrive blunt head screws into
blind fixes inside the trunk.  The filler is made of steel with an outer
slightly rolled edge.  The filler was painted body colour prior to its assembly
to the body of the car. 
Later MGBs to the end of
chrome bumper production use a slightly smaller in all dimensions bright alloy
filler attached by 3 screws.
These early rear bumper
fillers are NLA new from any known source, but can be successfully made from 18
ga steel with a hammer rolled edge.  Many unknowing owners substitute the later
commonly available bright alloy filler. 
 Pic #1  Early Body colour
 Pic #2  Later bright alloy

Very Early MGB Front Signal/Parking Lamp Lenses

Author: A. Henderson
Early MGBs until the 1967/68 market in the USA and 1966
market in Canada had all clear Lucas signal/parking lamp lenses.  The switch to
amber/partial amber lenses was completed by the 1968 model year.  The 2 bulb
lamp body was replaced completely as was the lense for the 1970 model year
although the new one piece lense shape remained identical to the 1962-69
Very early MGBs had a unique parking lamp lense in that
the flutes on the lense were horizontal, matching the flutes on the signal lamp
part of the lense.  These parking lamp lenses with horizontal flutes are
unavailable from any known source. Replacement lenses with the later, vertical
flutes are available from normal sources either as OE Lucas, or unbranded
 The plastic used in these lenses reacts badly to UV
rays and takes on a white, milky appearance over time.  It is unknown as to the
specific change point from horizontal to vertical fluting on the parking lamp