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Porsche 924 white


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For the last few months I've only been able to share with you a love of automotive cack from the last couple of decades of the previous century, especially anything BMC-BL-AR-MGR etc. But now I've got a fantastic Autoshite of my own, so I can bleat on about that endlessly and plan to do so, right here, right now.





I've been looking for a fun* car for a few years now, without really committing to anything. For about a gran i've previously got all hot and bothered about a Cincquecento sporting (before Inbetweeners ruined them), a Puma, a 205gti or cti, a mg metro, mg maestro, a mgf, a rover 200vi, and more recently I started rubbing my trousers repeatedly about a local low mileage rover 25gti (one for the rover anoraks).






As you can see from my first post on AS:












...I confidently predicted back in June that in 6 months I'd be the proud owner of an MG Maestro, but true to my name I got distracted and ended up with something completely different.






So, why a 924? Blame GarethJ of this parish. He put forward such a compelling argument for the 924 here:












...and again here:












...that the car went from 'not even considered the merits of ownership' to 'top chod and I definitely should' immediately.






So what appealed to me? These are the main reasons:



1. Fairly simple mechanics, a car that I could learn some car mechanics on.



2. Back seat, essential for the dustbin lid.



3. The mrs approves. 



4. It's surprisingly economical, and has a lot of vw/audi parts.



5. They were galvanised in the 80's. Great. Likely to dislove a bit slower than anything elas on my chod for a gran list.



6. Cheap for what they are. Scene tax dodging on a massive scale. If they were a VW, Audi, Karmann Ghia or almost anything other than a Porsche, they'd be worth twice as much. And I wouldn't be able to afford one.



7. The 70's Pascha interior. Wow. Just wow! And pop up headlights. POP UP HEADLIGHTS!!!



8. It's not a proper Porsche mate... Yes, great. A Porsche that Porsche enthusiasts aren't enthusiastic about. That's the car for me.



9. It's got a van engine. Yes, there's nothing I want more in a car than for the Top Gear/Pub Bore car loving squad to misunderstand it. (Maybe explains the love for the MG Maestro?).



10. Underdogs are for winnaz.






What's not to like? Er, just the ==PORSCHE== graphics most of these have down the sills. Ruins the clean lines of what is, to my eye, a sexy devil of a car. Also smacks of attention seeking. Is it really that desperate to be accepted as a Porsche?






I started looking for a 924 for about £750, but the kindly folk at the owners club made a sensible suggestion to up my budget to £1000-1500. This seems to be about the right amount for a car with an MOT that doesn't need expensive/extensive work doing to it. The less attractive alternative appears to be spend £750 on a car and then another £750 on work that needs doing to it.






So this summer I've been watching any 924 that came up on ebay, autotrader car&classic, gumtree etc for £1500 or less. Unfortunately they were all either wrecks, automatic, the other end of the country, boring interiors, out of my budget or red. Or any combination of those.






Having nearly bought a low mileage but incredibly rusty grey MG Maestro from Aberdeenshire out of desperation (lucky escape) I nearly choked on my Port and crackers I was so surprised to spot this thread from GarethJ:












Surprised that he was moving it on, but excited that it seemed to be just what I was after. So we talked, and I headed up a few saturdays ago on a very un-epic, un-autoshite collection un-adventure. (Bus to East Croydon, then one train right through London to Flitwick, and a lift from the station from the Gent himself. Took about 90 mins & £20 door to door).


















As I looked over it, Gareth went about soldering some ignition wiring to fix a starting problem. I couldn't work out if having the seller working on the car as I was viewing was a really bad sign, or showed commitment way above and beyond expectation. Being a bit new round these parts, I decided it was probably just the Autoshite way.






Like all Autoshite, the photos flattered it, but it was nice and solid, with only a couple of bits of rust that will need sorting at some point. Had been resprayed at some point, and not especially well, but white hides all sorts, and I'm not buying it for Concourse. No leaks, all the electrics work, and  the interior is even more fab in real life. As much as I tried, I couldn't find any reason not to buy it. We had a drive, and I liked it even more. Nice exhaust sound, steering heavy for parking but really nice on the move. Nippy enough, without being silly fast. Gareth took me past a house that had a couple of Maestros fizzing away in the front garden that the owner was slowly turning into a shrubbery and I decided that bizarre as it might sound, buying a Porsche was the sensible option.






Other than the usual, what should I look out for on these... Having consulted every possible bit of info on the web, the same stuff comes up over and over:



1. Rust... the galvanising doesn't last as long as you'd like. I'd like it to last forever, ideally. Especially rear end of the inner & outer sills, battery tray and front valance.



2. Engine... Piston rings can wear out. Things seem to wear out unspectacularly on these cars rather than break spectacularly.



3. Electrical... these are the most likely probs... battery to starter cable can melt and short on exhaust, electric windows and sunroof can be trouble, headlights can struggle to pop up or pop down, and as the fusebox is under the battery tray if that's rusty then water comes into the footwell in an entertaining fashion via the fusebox. Pretty much anything electrical can be a problem. It's what these old Porsches do best.



4. Fuel tank leaks... hard to get hold of new tanks, also rear axle/gearbox needs to be removed to replace tank, so an expensive job.



5. Clutch... with gearbox at the rear it's a costly job to replace the clutch.



6. Rear glass hatch... can leak water, and exhaust fumes into the car.






I knew about all of the work that Gareth had done over the summer, as it was documented here and on RR. Although no guarantee, it helped to know that a fair bit of stuff had been done to it, especially the fuel tank and clutch had been replaced for the mot.






So, I bought it. Then drove it home avoiding the motorways as much as possible. Although I have to say it's been a long, long time since I grinned so much going round the M25. Here's some photos, which flatter it, obviously:








































































































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That looks pretty tidy. I had 2,a red 82 924, and a perpl 84 924S on teledials and with the "straight" steering wheel (I prefer yours). The cooling system on my S kept airlocking until I belt and braces'd it and stuck a new stat and rad in. Someone told me at the time that if you don't put a proper Porsche-approved battery in it, the car will handle funny! Go figure.

Well bought, sir, that looks well.


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Give the sills a GOOD poke with a screwdriver or similar. Any signs of blistering under the paint will not be good news! Also any exhaust fumes entering the car can be either rear hatch seal or the sealing around the rear lights.

That apart, lovely looking purchase. Enjoy!


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Love the acid-trip interiors on these.

Looks lovely in general.

Hope it keeps you grinning for for the foreseeable future.


Yip, they don't make interiors like them ones no more, Guv.


It looks like Gary Kasparov and Tim Rice spent all night munching mushrooms and then spewed their mad sex antics on to a large bolster of cloth.


Said cloth then driven to Stuttgart by Shakin' Stevens in a Ford Transit at top speed all the way.

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  • 2 weeks later...

A quick update on 924 ownership:


I'm not sure just how sensible it is to pressure jet wash a 28 year old car of mostly unknown heritage, but I thought that washing it would be a good way to get to know the car a bit better.

It cleaned up nicely, and a bit of Mer gave it some sparkle too. Wheels came up nicely with some alloy cleaner too. It's also good to know that the sunroof & rear hatch don't leak. The usual factory fitted lift/remove sunroofs are well known for leaking via blocked drainage holes, but this one has a retro fitted glass tilt/slide webasto affair. 


I couldn't quite believe my luck when I started jet washing the sills and the ==PORSCHE== decals started to lift off. A bit of persistence and both sides lifted off a treat. I've now got the sticky backing of the decals left on the car. I'm going to try a bit of petrol/rag to remove them. Or I could leave them and see the PORSCHE lettering fade in and out depending how dirty the car is. 

Unfortunately they took a couple of bits of paint with them, so I've got a bit of bare metal to deal with. Ho hum.








The black waxoil coating on the leading edge of the front valance came off with the jetwash too, and makes it look nicer, but has also uncovered some rust and previous touching up. at either end by the joint with the lower wings.


So, on the whole the car looks tattier around the edges, but at least I've got some idea now of what needs doing to make it look a bit smarter.



In other news, I gave it a bit of welly going around a nice open roundabout then a filck to the left to come off, and heard a loud, alarming bright metallic clanking from the rear, like the sound of something fairly significant coming off the car. Despite the instant panic I felt, I was a bit confused. It was the wrong sort of noise for a wheelnut, or an exhaust bracket, not dull enough. The car felt the same, brakes and steering as before, so I turned round to have a look.


Gareth, if you left a combi spanner under the car recently, it's now by the central reservation on the A22, Ann Summers roundabout. Can be rescued if needed.


That's all for now.

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The only thing I can think of with a loud metal clonk is the exhaust, the stainless steel aftermarket one looked a bit close to the driveshaft when I was under it.  Maybe with the car leaning one way then the suspension unloading the driveshaft hit it?


Looks much better without the PORSCHE letters!

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  • 1 year later...

Apart from an initial enthusiastic flurry it's clear that I've been a bit rubbish at keeping this tale of 924 ownership updated.

That's all about to change though, as I will now embark on bringing it up to date a month per post. So hold onto your hats for 18 months in 18 posts in 18 days. Probably.


Starting now.









To recap, I'm rubbish at car mechanics. About 20 years ago I tightened the fanbelt on my old Mini Clubman estate, and that's about as much as I've done, other than replacing windscreen wiper blades, topping up fluids, etc.


So after a month or 2 of living with the 924 here's my initial list of things that need noting/doing/avoiding where possible:


Water temperature gauge not working
Oil pressure gauge gives random reading each trip, from 1 to 5 bar
Injector seals need replacing
Trace and sort battery drain


Fit rear seat belts, so all the family can have low slung fun too
Clutch has low biting point - needs adjusting
Tiny bit of rust in passenger sill needs welding
Clock not working
Smell of fuel in car - maybe corroded fuel pipes need replacing
Smell of exhaust in car -maybe hatch rubber seal needs replacing
Lights don't pop down fully
Alternator cooling hose missing, needs replacing


Sticky remains of =porsche= sill decals need removing
Bare metal patches on sills from decal removal/previous respray need attention
Rust at ends of front valance need attention
Rust bubbling below rear spoiler needs attention
Rear Porsche decal needs replacing


If/when I fancy it:
Fit nicer looking stereo
Repair split passenger seat fabric. Or just leave it.


November 2013 was a busy month. I did 3 jobs.


Job 1: Injector rings:

I joined the 924 owners club immediately and a bloke called Karl, who is lovely and races a 924 contacted me and said that he was the bloke that Gareth took it to, and suggested that I replace the injector seals, as he'd recommended it to Gareth but didn't think it had been done. He though they needed replacing to solve poor running and starting issues. The mechanic that services our other car used to work for a VW/Audi dealer in the 80/90s and said they would routinely replace these as it was a quick cheap job that could make a big difference to running.


Having no experience of 924s to compare mine to, I wasn't really sure whether it was running smoothly or not... how smooth is a 28yr old car going to be?
After taking it to work via the clogged stop start streets of South East London it developed a significant misfire, with popping from the exhaust, loss of power and the car vibrating so much I felt nauseous sitting in it at tickover, which was down to about 500rpm. I had visions of the injector seals having disintegrated with bits of crumbling rubber causing trouble as the bits moved around the engine, blocking up important components, and an engine running on mostly air with a hint of fuel. Time to sort it.

I got said injector rings from a place called Frazerpart, who are really useful/helpful and good value specialist suppliers for old Porches. Seals were £1 each, and I also got a length of flexible hose for the missing alternator cooling duct too.
I replaced the injector rings, which was quite exciting because it was my first proper mechanical car maintenance job.




Injector seals were still intact, and the injectors themselves were really mucky




Got the rings off, so hard there was no way they were going to slide of so I had to break them.




Wondered how to clean the injectors. I had some carb cleaner but on the back of the can it says to avoid spraying on rubber components so I got a bit worried about using it. I used an old mayo jar of unleaded and let them soak for about an hour.


While I was soaking them I had a good poke around the engine, and thought I'd have a look to see where the spark plugs were. I was surprised to find that the 2 middle leads came away in my hands. Facepalm! It suddenly dawned on me that the lumpy running might just be caused by only firing on 2 cylinders.

I was so keen to confirm this that I forgot to take photos of the clean injectors or the new seals in my rush to get everything back together. Went for a quick drive, and the car was brilliant. The misfire was cured by having all 4 cylinders working (it's funny how the most obvious things are the easiest to overlook!) and it ticks over and pulls really nicely in all gears, and from low revs.

I'm pretty certain it's faster than before. In fact I'm sure it is. It definitely wasn't this much fun before the misfire started. It turned into a much longer drive than I intended. Best 30mins of 924 ownership so far!




Also fitted hose for Alternator cooling. Apparently it's important because the back of the alternator is close to the exhaust manifold but most 924s I've seen don't have it attached. This is the kind of car mechanics I can manage with aplomb... cutting a hose to length, and tightening jubbly clips to each end. Job jobbied!


Job 2: Choons

The car came with an 80's Sharp stereo, which despite having a fantastic 5 bar graphic equaliser for adjusting all manner of hertz, just didn't look right with the interior. A bit too 'Dixons' for my liking. So I changed it. Via owners club I got a very attractive Blaupunkt Bristol 27 which I fitted and am very pleased with. Sounds fantastic, looks fantastic.








It's got a nice sound, plays my old mix tapes that I made up in the 80s and 90s, and is manual tuning so I can while away hours rolling the tuning button up and down the airwaves looking for some decent radio to listen to. Then put on a mix tape from the 80s or 90s that I made up.


Note condensation on dials. We'll come back to that in the future.


Job3: Hole in passenger sill:

Hole in passenger sill spotted. Looks like a priority job so I’ll get that done eventually at leisure. I checked inside sills by dangling my iPhone into the vents at the back of the door closure and videoing the dangle and they look to be OK. I think normal people check this sort of thing before buying a car.






Noted, and ignored. Easy job.


That's all from November 2013. See you next month tomorrow!

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Nothing too catastrophic gone wrong, really!


Rich, I love the radio/cassette you've removed, and I've been looking for such a period cassette for the Maestro for a while now, as I can use an adapter in one to run an MP3 player through. Would you be willing to sell it? (if indeed you still have it).

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I've had a sneaking ambition for several years, to one day get a 924 and strip it out to make a cheap track-day weapon. However, I couldn't physically bring myself to remove a single piece of that interior. It must be an utterly blissful place to be, regardless of the actual driving experience.

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AngryDicky: I advertised it here in nov 2013 when I took it out and there were no takers. It sat in my shed filed under 'too good to chuck' until about a month ago when I took it to the dump. I'm truely gutted, I hate chucking working stuff out.


Others: Oh yes, the interior is mega awesome. I'm dead serious when I say its the thing I like most about this car. In time the world will realise how epic this interior is, but in the meantime we will just have to be content with being ahead of the curve.

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Only one small job done, fitting a battery cut off switch. Like this one:





Other than that that, it was a month of driving and enjoying the car. Including popping over to Wrotham, Kent for the Autoshite Southern meet up. I seem to remember that this came about because Vulgalour was coming this way to collect something Princessy, but I think there was a change of plan at the last minute because he wasn't there. I'm trying to remember who was, and apologies if I forget anyone but I think Wackywacerwill, Keef, Outlaw118, DSDriver, AlexG and Angrydicky turned up a bit later in his A35. And now let's go over to the gallery...




















It was a fun morning, and nice to meet some quality shiters and their chod. In fact, it might have been the afternoon, I can't remember. Everyone said we should do it again, but we so far we haven't. But we should.



On the way back cruising through the Kunt Centryside along Pilgrims way up into the Surrey Hills I decided I should stop and take some moody photoshopped photos of the low slung sports hatchback. So I did.






















That's all for December the year before last. See you next month tomorrow!

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A very happy New Year! I started 2014 with a trip over to Brooklands for the New Years Day Gathering and despite really awful weather it was well worth it. It was sort of like this but better:




I posted some photos of the day in my Chod Bothering thread so I won't repeat them, but they're here:




There's a brilliant bus museum at Brooklands, which was not only interesting but a nice rest from the relentless rain.

I think I might have spotted where Porsche got some inspiration for their Pascha madness:






I also decided I'd pull off the rubbing strip, because a couple of the bits were bending back at the ends anyway, and I had a suspicion that it might look nicer without them. The black horizontal line seems to break up what is quite an elegant, well proportioned and coherent shape. I thought if I preferred it with them then I'd get a new set and reapply them, no bother. It was shortly after I pulled them off I found out they are NLA. So it's a good thing I prefer it without them.












The car now looks a mess, as it's got sticky residue from the rub strip and the Porsche sill decals stuck to it. I'll sort that out at some point in the future, because you can't see it from the drivers seat, unlike that lovely Pascha interior and brown dashboard, which you very definitely can.




In other news, my son broke our torch, so I couldn't find the foot pump to pump up the tyres late one afternoon as it was getting dark, so I thought I'd treat the car to some expensive 50p air from the local petrol station, and being a tight arse and trying to get around all 4 tyres before the money ran out I managed to get the air hose caught on the aerial which then snapped it. New aerial ordered for about £10 off ebay and then fitted without drama, or photos. Also bought new torch, and found new higher up place to store it.




In other other news, I decided to fit rear seat belts so the three of us can go out for some low slung family fun. I took loads of photos because I wanted to do a step by step 'how to' guide for the owners club forum, but the short version is something like this:






Dismantle the folding rear seat back:




Pull up the rear seat base:




Locate the holes in the transmission tunnel and arches with the captive nuts in them while admiring the pretty glue patterns:




Accurately stab my gorgeous upholstery to make a hole to get the belt brackets to locate in:






Fit the seatbelt brackets:








Refit the rear seat upholstery:




All done:




Finally have a cup of tea and a boaster, or two:




It worked out well, because my son really likes going out in 'the white car' because he's got his own little window that he can look out of, and because the seats are just the right size for him. He falls asleep in it quite a lot, but that might just be because the heater is awesome and the car is always lovely and warm. There's been a lot of interest in the seat belt 'how to' I did, because the 924 would appear to be a good choice for those of us with small children. I'm quite surprise how many people I've met with a 924 and kids.


Anyway, it's been quite a busy January, see you next month tomorrow!

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