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In Memory of Masaaki Sakaguchi

1949 - 2014

by Hiroshi Ogawa — September 2014

19 APR 2009 with MG-PB 1935 made at Imperial Hotel

Born on 26 January, 1949. After graduating Chuo University, Department of Science and Engineering, he joined a game machine manufacturing company. With his technical capabilities and trend of the world, the company grew rapidly. But as he was suffering from an illness he had to leave the company. After he recovered he joined Matsukawa Koki managed by his friend. They had been manufacturing machines investigating the earth's core. There had been some problems with the machines. After Masaaki joined the company and improved machines, the sales record was greatly increased. The company purchased the latest machinery as manufacturing and production orders continued to grow because of Mr. Sakaguchi's efforts. Masaaki produced tools and badges of titanium with edge materials during the break time while at work. He undertook the production of various parts that were out of producing for owners of classic vintage car. After he left the company he found a job at another company again and continued the machining job to a retirement age afterwards.

31 MAR 2013 at our monthly meeting working for my MG-TF control box

His first car was Nissan SR311 Fair Lady 2000 purchased in Osaka followed by TOYOTA Sprinter Trueno.


He purchased an MGB as a first owner of it in about 1980. It was an exhaust emissions controlled car, so the performance was not good. He tried to adjust it in a repair car shop, but did not succeed as this time he did maintenance his car by himself.


His next purchase was green Austin Healey 3000. The condition was not good so he overhauled and repaired it including rebuilding the engine by himself and finally made it a perfect car.


He joined the Austin Healey club of Japan and met Mr. Ono who was an owner of Austin Healey as well. He repaired Mr. Ono's Healey perfectly as well using his maintenance experience.


25 AUG 2013 at our meeting Masaaki was driving my MG-TF

He started the breakfast meeting at the restaurant in Tokyo with 3 Classic Vintage car owners including Mr. Ono. It's called "Roppatsu Kai from 1988. He met many Classic Vintage Car Owners there. ("Roppatsu Kai" means six cylinders engine).


He purchased the green coloured and contest conditioned MG-YB made in 1952 in June 1992. It was imported to Japan in April 1987, beautiful condition and very close to original but the mechanical condition was not good. He repaired engine and emission by himself and finally made it perfect.


In Oct 2008, he sold Healey 3000, and purchased Green MG-PB made in 1935 from UK. It is arrived at Honmoku pier in Yokohama in December, and delivered into the garage on February 2, 2009.


The MG-PB also had a lot of noise problems and condition problems but he made it perfect condition. Sakaguchi did overhaul of engine, emission, clutch exchange, but he was most proud of the electric equipment system particularly the distributor as introduced on the International MG Y Type Register. He was also proficient in fuel systems and his skill of overhaul and repair of SU carburettor and fuel pump to a professional standard too.


Austin Healey, MG-YB, MG-PB, all of three were green. Also regarding the two-tone colour, he told in Y's parade he prefer the colour of YB-1547 so it seems he liked green.


Sakaguchi was called "Saka-chan" from the members and he offered adjustments of members car at breakfast meeting every time, His lecture about distributor was popular among the members. He didn't require any money for repairing and adjustment. The happiest for him was seeing happy faces of owners and hearing the words of praise.


On Friday, May 9, 2014, working his MG-PB, he felt sick and called an ambulance and went into cardiac arrest on arrival at the hospital. He passed away on 13 May because of cerebral infraction. He was 65 years old.


17 APR 2013 going to Suntry Hall to listen Munich Philharmonic orchestra with his son Kentaro

Mr. Ono's recollection


Seven or eight years ago, the couple of the British MG Car Club executives visited Japan. I took a day off and escorted them and their Dutch friend living in Japan to city trip in Tokyo with Mr.Hosoya and Saka-chan. We visited to BRG (the parts shop of British car) in Ichigaya and Tokyo Tower, etc. driving my TOYOTA Estima. We had the dinner in a Japanese restaurant in Rihga Royal Hotel in Waseda. I have a memory that tested some Japanese word to them. Saka-chan was enjoyed it very much.