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rob88h last won the day on March 6

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  1. I’ve been enjoying being out and about in the Mini. I’ve put about 2000 miles on this season already. Here’s hoping to more.
  2. The Bell Tolls for this Focus around its emissions I recon. The last MOT was passed, but it was towards the upper end of the Hydrocarbon limits. On the same MOT I also had the fortune of the advisory [6.1.2(a)] Exhaust has minor leak of exhaust gases – which I’m sure helped reduce the tailpipe emissions. That was at 160k miles. We’re getting close to 170k now, the oil consumption has increased, and the exhaust is repaired. We’ll see how it fairs on its next test in January… For now, I’m just giving it weekly checks and ensuring it stays above minimum fill level with whatever motor oil I’ve got handy. The Granada, the Granada. It has been sat for about a year now, poor thing. It’s become a victim of short-term distractions in the project queue, always with the well-meaning intentions of a quick turnaround so that I can then return to the Granada. That’s not really happened in practise though, what with the 480 then becoming the Fiesta, the Taxi, the Audi, the Rover, the Sierra etc… That and I’m still regularly working on the Mini and the 440 and Focus on the side. My intentions are: 1), Buy less distractions (hopeful). 2), Finish off the Sierra to a level I’m happy with. 3), Get stuck back in on the Granada! In that order The only car worse off is the rotten MX-5 that doesn’t even get a look-in these days.
  3. Calendar shoe-in right here - no voting required.
  4. Thing 1: the numberplate is great in its own right. Thing 2: I love the fact there is a school bus sign in it.
  5. Sierra DieseL A line up of my Fords is a photo I’d like. The Granada is a bit behind in its roadworthyness (predictive text aptly wants roadworthy mess). I’m not even sure if it would start right now. Must try harder. Speaking of trying harder, I’ve been chipping away as some of the Sierra jobs. Some nitshit yet MOT essential jobs like hanging the rear view mirror and clamping down the battery - the original clamp and bolt was hiding underneath the battery, result! I also changed all the aux belts for new ones. The engine timing is on a (presumably for life) chain. I’m slightly annoyed that the two alternator belts have slightly different printed section spacing. I lined them up on the crank pulley end but they don’t match up. With my OCD put safely back in it’s box and buoyed by my recent Volvo electrics diagnosis successes I decided to tackle some of the suspect wiring jobs I’ve spotted. (Also @wesacosa made me feel a bit guilty about some of the safety in this wiring bodgery I’d inherited and ignored). The first and easiest was the speaker wire rear demister; aka fire hazard. I say easiest because it turns out it’s not actually the rear demister. Instead it’s a brake light and the wire was simply routed around the demister and tucked into the screen rubber. I’m very much guessing this is not OEM, and not a requirement on a car this old, so may strip it out before the MOT. Next was my “mystery purple wire”. It was jammed into the fuse blade of the dash lights, but the other end went to what I found out to be a fuel cut off solenoid. In the bag-of-bits that came with the car there was a fly lead with the same connector as the fuel cut off solenoid. The plot thickens. The other end was a spade connector, giving me something to look for in terms of original wiring at least. I did find it! and continuity checked it to ground. Nada. At least I know why the mystery purple wire is here now. Tracing it back I found this: Kill switch, bingo! With it switched I have continuity on the original* wiring. I put all that back together and it’s now running without the mystery purple wire in the fuse bodge. I guess the guy who got this running before I bought it never found the switch, but found that the fuel cut solenoid wire was at fault so just added the wire in. So close. There’s not much more procrastination to do on the Sierra, I really should just stick it in for MOT and see what happens… …probably fail on this rust. It passes the poke test, but hey, if it needs it it needs it.
  6. You can have my gas I bought by mistake. I keep meaning to bring it over, just not been out your way in a while.
  7. This would be a terrifying collection mission: https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/747955116205553/ …lost temper and ended up taking it out on the car…
  8. Nice Saffron TR6 PI 😇
  9. Focus W_FOB - The Circle of Shite (To be sang as if in the Lion King) As is life, the Focus broke down when I went to pick up the spare part to finally fix the Volvo and get that back on the road! It seemed a bit symbolic that I can only have so many working cars at any one time. Upon joining the A12 I experienced heavy heavy vibrations. “Great”, I thought, “flat tyre”. A lay-by was coming up so I jumped in and jumped out. All for tyres were ok so my next thought was brakes. The right front was super hot and clearly binding (and stank). Frustrated I stomped the pedal a bit then tried rolling forward in the lay-by and it rolled nice and freely. Quick fix. We’ve got some miles to cover this weekend, and I didn’t fancy a motorway breakdown with the wife and dogs, so rather than going to the pub I did an F1* calliper and discs/pads change (yes both sides) New brakes never cease to be satisfying. I also got rid of the boiled fluids as a good excuse to use my new tool again. The driveway is becoming a bit of a three generation Ford garage. Post bedding-in.
  10. Volvo 440 M_CEC: The 2 year fix? (Long post alert - even I’m bored with it and it was my life…) For a good while the Volvo has been misbehaving. Dependable, but misbehaving. The following tale contains a lot of learning for me - a competent auto electrician (or even someone without several other distracting project cars!) would probably have had this all sorted in a weekend. For me it was over 2 years, lol. I can’t remember exactly when it all started, but December 2020 is when I first thought I’d fixed the Volvo 440’s running problem. See, my thread actually worked for a reminisce! Basically, I get random misfires. For a long time it’s been hard to diagnose because A), it’s intermittent and B), I hadn’t really worked out what sort of driving brought it on. For however long, I was just living with it, yet, in Dec 2020 I happened on decomposing HT leads. Passive diagnosis I call this. I was bleeding coolant from a hose leak and I could see the leads flashing, in the full light of day. Great, I thought, I didn’t even have to try and I’ve solved this. Well… with new leads it was still doing it. But “it is better, right?” I couldn’t really tell. It must be ignition though, the new leads have helped, but haven’t really cured it. I decided to change the plugs - and not those shitty 4 anode cross ones, some proper meaty sparkers. “It is better, right?” I still couldn’t really tell. Anyway, I went back to passive diagnosis and just learned to drive around the low rpm high torque problem regions. ^2020 (spoiler: I’m surprised how close I was back here) It seemed to be getting worse and worse into the summer until I finally had a complete FTP. Coil kaput. Legit. Boom, passive diagnosis for the win. When I thought about it, it was worse when hot - so the coil must’ve been breaking down in the heat but not so bad when cold I mused. With the coil replaced I was back in business. Nailed it I thought. But I was wrong. It was a red herring (or a symptom not a cause), the poor running and misfires came back. By winter 2021, with the new coil, it started to definitely get better, but it was still sometimes there and I’d started to notice it’s happening most after really long steady cruises, then accelerating. Semi-ignoring it hoping I stumble on the answer has not been working (surprise surprise). Coming into Spring 2022 it started to get a lot worse again. I was using the car a bit different after selling the Audi, taking it on a short trips to the park with the dogs. It became apparent this is what it hated the most. It would drive to the dog park fine, but on the way home it was running like a bag of dog shit. One time it struggled to get above 40mph without stupidly light load. So I grounded it. Sit rep: New (ish) plugs, leads and coil and it’s worse than ever. It runs ok cold, doesn’t like heavy acceleration after long cruises or being parked up. Q: have I ever changed the fuel filter. A: No. Having gone though a decent amount of the ignition system I started to think about fuel. The problem being it starts no problem cold or hot, so air entrainment or restrictions probably aren’t likely. I changed the fuel filter anyway, because maintenance. Q: Am I always misfiring the same cylinder? A: No. now I can invoke the issue a bit better I started pulling HT leads and the miss is all over the place. Q: Does a 1994 Volvo have OBD? A: Kind of! Not your normal scan tool port type deal, we’re talking blink codes. I didn’t know about these, but you put the lead in the various numbered circuits and press the button for various reads and watch the LED flash you out little codes. You can also use it to command actuator cycle checks. Nifty. Result: O2/Lambda sensor is toast. By now I’ve replaced the fuel filter and the O2 sensor, I have no blink codes and it’s still blinking bust and running shite. I’ve tried ignoring it. I’ve tried “listening” to what it has to say. Now it’s time to start asking it. These 1.8i Volvos run some form of Bosch Jetronic integrated fuel and ignition EFI type deal. Something is clearly misread or misunderstood at the ECU. Most likely something to do with temperature effects. After a bit of research, I have found I have the single point injector type. It doesn’t use a MAF but instead monitors Intake Air Temperature and Manifold pressure. PRIME SUSPECT. Running like shit when hot ambient air is about, after run and parked up or after steady cruise. The connector block for the Intake Air Temp sensor and Fuel Injector is shared. The Injector resistance checks out. BINGO! Intake Air Temp sensor is reading as an open circuit. The poorly Volvo doesn’t know when it’s eating hot air and and the ECU isn’t switching fuelling or timing maps hence running like crap. Try as I might I could not find a replacement part for the upside down picture, so step in a breaker: For what we are about to receive may the Lord make us truely thankful. L_FPE gave it’s life so others may live. 12 backfire salute. Etc. With a replaced Intake Air Temp sensor, so far, so far, the running problem seems to be gone for good. I did the KFC drive cycle, the worst for hot air: A warm up, slow queue through the drive-through, engine off to nosh in the carpark, startup again and then drive off with an engine bay full of as much hot air as Donald Trump. It used to throw a fit doing this. Now it seems to cope. It’s no longer grounded, but still resides in the naughty spot because I’ve too many other cars still. If your cars not running right, keep going. You’ll get there.
  11. Time to get creative with the zip-ties 🙃
  12. Meguiar’s Ultimate Compound. Then Meguiar’s Gold Class Carnauba wax on top. It’s come up really well but photos do flatter it (as ever). Red diesel is cherry red right? Pretty sure you’re joking and this is just what happens to diesel sat in a Sierra for 20 years. Got me worried now, I don’t want any trouble. I was like that when I got it Mr. Officer. Maybe I’ll flush it with some vegetable oil or liquidised pig shit (whichever has the least tax on it) as @MrDuke and Mr. @greengartside suggest. 👍
  13. That’s really kind of you, but I already have a couple in reserve and ready to go on. Sierra DieseL progress update o’clock! Straight in with rebuilt drums. New springs, copper grease on the backplate contact points, the works. Despite not having 14 hands they went together ok. The handbrake mechanism and cabling under the car even seems to work despite zero investigation. Parts In Motion have sent me the wrong rear flexi hoses, so we stop there and can’t bleed despite having just invested in an Ezeebleed kit and a newly shod spare wheel. Looking forward to trying that out. Getting the old flexi hoses out was a knack and required some live problem solving. They’re secured in with some little fish plate (is that the term?) clip type thingy-ma-bobs (or is that the term?). My m8 Archimedes suggested I lever up the lowers on a fulcrum consisting of my pliers. The tops came out thanks to my other m8 MacGyver suggesting hooking one of the old hardened steel brake springs and jerry-rigging it to the tripoid fitting of the much loved slide hammer, as there was no fulcrum for method Archimedes was banging on about. I’ve also changed the fuel filter. There’s 3/4 a tank of this rancid diesel in the tank, but the mighty Indenor seems to gobble it up readily. I get the feeling it’s not a fussy engine. Did you clean out the fuel filter sump/ “crud accumulator” I hear no-one ask. Yes. I also changed the seals, pre-filled it with the minging diesel, then proceeded to knock it over when trying to refit the bugger spilling about half a litre of diesel all over the engine bay and gravel. Damn it. At least I won’t have weeds for a bit. Primed and started up ok though, so job jobbed despite the spillage. While waiting for the rear brake hoses I progressed the polishing up the left flank.
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