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1988 Fiat Panda, minor update.


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All done! Almost completely uneventful, thankfully. One of the rear tyres on the Panda was flat when we set off, we pumped it up but by the time we got back it had gone down again, it was perished anyway though, so no great loss. The Golf pulled the Panda without any drama and felt comfortable at 65.

The Panda isn't too bad at all. I've heard it running but it doesn't start very well, I think an ignition service will sort that out. It's a long term project though, don't expect any heroic levels of work rate! I'll update as and when.

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As a bit of a sub story the seller, in the doorway in the loading up picture, had a yard chock full of tat, including an OMGHGF Rover and a diesel Rover. He's near J9 of the M42 if anybody's interested. PM and I'll pass on his number. I'll try and get him to e-mail me a list of all the junk he has.

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  • 3 years later...

Holy thread resurrection Batman!

Having had this Panda in my garage since 2016 I thought it was about time I did something with it. When I bought it it didn't start very well, I initially suspected ignition components, the battery is shagged so I nosed my van up to it, connected the jump leads and tried stuff. Unbelievably all the electrical items worked! I have it a try on the starter, it turned but wouldn't fire, not even trying. I don't know why but something was telling me it was the carb, I stripped it down and sure enough the main jet was partially blocked. I gave it alla good clean then threw it back on the car. 

It fired right up, result!

Well no.

The water was low, so as I topped it up I was running the heater fan, then all of a sudden nothing electrical was working, except for the engine. All body electrics have disappeared, confusingly the temp guage is right over on the L/H stop, even with the key out of the ignition. Disconnect the battery and it slowly returns to the R/H stop, where it should be. Two steps forward and one back, it's a start though I guess.

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So, I've been out and taken a look, predictably the little female spade connectors are corroded, they're very difficult to clean up but I had a go. Then I went round with a jump lead from the battery earth to various earthing points, while doing this I noticed that there is only an earth strap from the battery to the engine, no sign of one to the body, or even from the engine to the body. I did manage to get everything going at one point, then depressed the clutch and... It all disappeared again! 

Tomorrow I'll pick up the earth cable I have at my folks place and make up a decent earth. Hopefully then I can move on and start work elsewhere.

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One earth point to the body is behind the passenger headlight on the inner wing in the engine bay. As Vin says look like a hedgehog. Don't just clean the spade connectors but unbolt it and clean where the shell and hedgehog touch. 

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Yeah, I'm familiar with them, I did clean the 'hedgehog' to body interface, they were clean already though. The spade connectors are almost impossible to get a good surface on. I'm fairly convinced that once I get a proper earth strap fitted from battery to body it'll cure it.

Thanks for the replies. Are you a Panda owner, I'm prolly going to need some spares soon!

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4 hours ago, spartacus said:

Yeah, I'm familiar with them, I did clean the 'hedgehog' to body interface, they were clean already though. The spade connectors are almost impossible to get a good surface on. I'm fairly convinced that once I get a proper earth strap fitted from battery to body it'll cure it.

Thanks for the replies. Are you a Panda owner, I'm prolly going to need some spares soon!

Panda and Y10. The Panda been sitting in a lockup since 2005. Still got quite a few spares. 

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Just thought I'd mention, there is also an earth strap from the starter to the bulkhead, in the area below the heater box.

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  • spartacus changed the title to 1988 Fiat Panda, minor update.

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