Yesterday was not a good day. I got up bright and early (by my standards) and went out to have a crack at doing some more jobs on the Maxus. After spending some time trying, and once again failing, to persuade either the bottom ball joint or the track rod end to come free, I decided to go underneath and have a go at cleaning up the inner sill where it needs welding. I then noticed a small hole in the very back of the inner sill on the edge of the wheelarch. I poked at it and it quickly became a bigger hole. Big enough in fact to stretch part way behind the outrigger. So it's now going to need two bits of welding rather than just the one, and the "new" bit I've found is on a curve so it's going to be more complicated to do.
I couldn't do a lot about that so I decided to have a crack at the brake pipe. This did not go well. The union where the pipe goes into the flexi was rusted solid, and just rounded off when I tried to undo it. It didn't help that access is spectacularly shit - the metal pipes go up between two crossmembers and then loop back downwards to join to the flexi, so it's impossible to get any decent sized tools in there. Stupid bit of design.
At one point during my efforts to get the union to undo I noticed brake fluid dripping out. Initially I thought I'd managed to loosen the union but actually it was the brake pipe that had snapped and was pissing fluid out. So I then had to run around like a twat undoing the brake pipe at the front of the van (which fortunately came apart relatively easily) and plugging the pipe so the master cylinder didn't empty itself of fluid.
I was getting extremely pissed off with the van by then, so I brought the newly acquired C5 round to the house and gave it a good hoover out and wipe down. I then drove it to Norwich, and on the way back I got a phone call from my mate who I'd swapped the Dodge Caliber with for the Citroën, telling me that the Dodge was fucked. So I went round there, we swapped back and I headed for home in the Caliber. He wasn't wrong. There was no boost whatsoever, the turbo was making a strange rattling noise, and after about a mile it was chucking out so much white smoke that I couldn't see the road behind me. Fortunately the roads were fairly quiet being Sunday night, but the few cars I did encounter coming the other way all had to brake as they got past me because they couldn't see where they were going. The car would just about manage 50 on the flat, eventually.
My mate had added some oil as it was below the minimum on the dipstick, and I chucked another half a litre or so in to bring it up to where it should be - in the 12-mile journey home, it had used all that and most of the rest of what was in the sump, and the oil pressure light started coming on a couple of miles from home. It got me back, by some miracle, but the back of the car is now covered in oil droplets and there's a puddle of oil under the exhaust where it's dripped out.
Removemycar are going to give me £385 for it as scrap, which is quite a lot less than it owes me but there you go. I'm officially done with modern* diesels.
Today went slightly better - I managed to persuade the brake pipe union on the van to come apart, and I also found another union which I hadn't spotted before halfway down a crossmember, which means I only have to replace 4' of pipe rather than the full 16' I'd initially thought. In fact as luck would have it I had an offcut of copper brake pipe exactly the right length, so I'm going to make it up and fit it tomorrow and the van should at least then be mobile again...