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About mat_the_cat

  • Rank
    Rank: Renault 16

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  • Location
    Riding the trough of the fashion wave
  • Interests
    Anything with wheels or an engine...


  • Country
    United Kingdom

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  1. What's classed as high mileage for a truck?
  2. Thanks The claim is that it allows 70% of visible light though, and in practice it looks very similar to look through when you compare an untouched window. As I work for an optics manufacturer (not the drinking kind!) I have access to spectrometers which can measure transmission right across the spectrum, so let's see if the claims are true... I've not yet tried it in the dark, so good shout! Really I hope I don't have to take it off, as we go away in a week!
  3. I've now put the film on the side windows, but STILL awaiting strong sunshine to test it. In the meantime though, I placed one of the removed door windows in front of our log burner (yes, its been that cold!) and could barely feel any heat through it. Which suggests it should help reduce the greenhouse effect. I've also bought some 20mm foil-faced foam insulation for under the engine cover. This already had some fibre insulation, but this was sagging and allowing warm air to circulate behind. It also weighed a fair bit, but I was wary about whether simply swapping it for the foam stuff would lead to poorer sound deadening. So I used my phone to measure the sound level before and after, on an identical journey. Here is the replacement insulation: I'm happy to say that there was no increase in sound level afterwards; in fact there was a 1 decibel reduction in the average over a 20 minute drive, although that could well be down to measurement uncertainty using a phone! Need a longer journey to see whether that reduces the heat coming though the cover significantly though.
  4. To put my pedant hat on for a moment, there are a few more detail differences (as standard) which have yet to be pointed out: Headlights - the facelifted ones are made from a darker grey plastic, making them appear smaller. Slam panel - note the recess in the middle on the later car, and the missing slot where the information plate is situated. Washer bottle - moved to the nearside with the facelift, where I've mounted the header tank (OK, you can only see the corner of my washer bottle in the photo). What you can't see are things like the better positioned window switches, the improved fusebox (back in the 90s, every scrap early Stellar showed the same evidence of overheating of the high current fuses). More different than you'd think at first sight!
  5. I managed 25mpg on one tankful...pleased with that!
  6. Another victim of the Shitefest 2019 curse here, but only mildly. My engine wouldn't idle until Bridgewater, although was ok at speed. Made it difficult to pull away smoothly, as you may have noticed! I suspect a carb blockage which then cleared, but how it got past the fuel filter I don't know. I first thought Dollywobbler had broken it...
  7. I've yet to take the Stellar to a Shitefest without having mechanical worries on the way, so it would seem a common problem. Good luck, and let me know if you need any spares bringing down (I do actually have a spare oil pump as it happens, which I have no use for!)
  8. The crucial question is, which car?
  9. Have a good journey down folks, and I'll see you at some point on Saturday evening!
  10. First part of this plan was to install some solar film on the cab windows. You can get this in various grades, but the basic idea is that it cuts out a significant proportion of the infra-red rays, but lets through most of the visible light. So given that most of the van is well insulated, I want to cut down on the sun's heat coming in through the windscreen. Even with the aid of soapy water, manhandling a 2 x 1 meter sheet of sticky film inside the cab was rather tricky! With hindsight I thing I'd have adhered one edge on the glass without the soapy water, then removed the backing film as I went along. But I got it in: Then I squeezed out the water, to allow the film to stick: I'm not 100% happy with the end result, as if you look closely you can see imperfections, but not you can notice while driving. I need to replace the screen at some point, so If this makes a big difference I will apply film to the new screen before fitting. Anyway, this is the end result - just waiting for some strong sunshine to test it! You can see how some of the visible light is reflected, the effect of which is magnified at an angle. We made a trip over to Shropshire this weekend, but although the weather was a lot better than Wales, we didn't get any strong sunlight while we were in the van. Went to our usual spot in the hills, and arrived just in time to watch the sun go down.
  11. My mum, who has quite severe arthritis, finds it easiest to get into our Discovery rather than a normal car. Seat is at the right height so no need to lower into it, and lack of a sill lip means less need to lift legs. So based on that, look at the distance from the seat squab to the lip of the door aperture when considering.
  12. I hope we don't offend toooo much! Is there anybody going who would be able and willing to relay a bonnet to Vulgalor? Just wondering if I should try squeezing it in the car...
  13. After 22 years of ownership I've just hit the second major milestone on the Stellar! And 15k miles since the V8 went in.
  14. Yeah, probably. I used to work in temperature calibration, so there's no excuse! I did measure it with an infra-red thermometer, but without knowing the emissivity of what I was pointing it out, couldn't rely on it.
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