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Domes shonky autos-Winging it with the Kangoo and BMW fettling


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OK, the thread title is a bit misleading.

Yes, a Land Rover part failed. However, it was a Land Rover part fitted to the Kangoo. Bear with me.

On my way up to cycling on Tuesday night I heard a blow from the Kangoo exhaust-not the first time as i made the exhaust from a bog standard Clio 172 exhaust with some extra bits added to make it work on the Kangoo(the tailpipe exits on the opposite sit on the Kangoo to the Clio)

I stuck my head underneath, noted the location of the leak and thought "Nae bother, I'll pop in to Halfords on my way back from work and grab a bandage for that."

However, on the way to work yesterday the blow seemed louder. As the weather was shite I ignored it and headed straight to Halfords and then popped my head underneath.


We're going to need a bigger bandage...

And the Land Rover connection? This section was added to the new 172 exhaust I bought in order to get the tailpipe to the correct side. It came from the Freelander which started this very thread! As you can see the pipe has had repairs in the past but this time it failed completely at a welded (from the factory) section.

Anyway, temporary* fix applied.


And she's quiet(er) again. 

I really should just fork out and get a custom exhaust made for this...


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  • 2 weeks later...

So, the 924 is off to it's new home with a shiter last week. I'll let them introduce themselves in due course.

The space on the drive was needed for a company van for a new job I start tomorrow, so naturally last night I picked up another car.




The poor lad had advertised it for scrap money and wasn't prepared for the sheer fuckwittery of Gumtree users.

Luckily i was on hand to be his knight in shining armour who could string a sentence together, arrive at the arranged time and put a deposit down while he waited for his new car to arrive.  Fast forward to last night and I picked it up.

It seems solid underneath from a prod and the back axle looks intact. The exhaust flexi is fucked so I've ordered one of those up and will stick it in for an MOT when I get a chance-the Rangey and MR2 are both due soon too. Ideal just as the clocks go back...




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  • dome changed the title to Domes shonky autos-New shite-Endangered animal collection!
54 minutes ago, Ian_Fearn said:

Bloody brilliant cars these 169 Pandas. Is this a 1.2 with VVT?

I have no idea, it'll be Sunday at the earliest before I get to look at it. Is there an easy way to tell? 

It's definitely* a posh one, it's got electric windows!

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On 02/11/2022 at 21:13, Jim Bell said:

Great wee cars. Clear the plastic drain funnel things in the scuttle. It's raining a lot and if they're blocked you'll get internal WET. 

I don't know why I listen to you.

All I've done is cover the driveway in MANKY WATER 


and get my hands FILTHY by listening to your advice.


Now I have to ask matron nicely if I can go for a bath.




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1 hour ago, dome said:

I don't know why I listen to you.

All I've done is cover the driveway in MANKY WATER 


and get my hands FILTHY by listening to your advice.


Now I have to ask matron nicely if I can go for a bath.





You're welcome. 

Better out than in and all that. 

Now you don't have to dry the footwell out and the stinky mess stays outside. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Ok, time for an update. 

I got a look at the Panda for the first time in daylight last weekend so set about repairing the exhaust flexi and seeing if I could get the manifold bolts to come out so I could replace the porous sump. 

Manifold heat shield off with only one sheared bolt. 


Knowing that would come off but not having actually ordered a sump I left that and set about fitting the new flexi I'd bought.

Old one off, not in the best of health.


"Guaranteed to fit the oe exhaust " it said in the listing. Guess I don't have the or exhaust then. It wasn't going to fit without some careful craftsmanship*

Spare bit of exhaust chopped up to make a sleeve



And together.


It's assembled dry for now as it'll need to come back off when I do the sump, I also need to buy the correct clamp for it as it was scraping on the speed bumps cos I'd used one far too big🙈


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The Rangey was clearly feeling left out-after 100 miles last Saturday I went to take the dog out for a walk somewhere away from the local fireworks only to be greeted with every single warning light illuminated on the dash. Joy.

I limped it home and took the Kangoo instead.

Once the mutt was exercised i had a look at it. The battery light was also on so I started by plugging in my little cigarette socket voltmeter. Fired it up and the volts sat at 12-14 as you'd expect. However, a gentle rev would see them climb to 18v and connect 4 was achieved in the dash. Alternator it is then.

Water cooled too on this thing for maximum lols. 

Next morning I had to start the day by jumping the Rangey as the fucked alternator had drained the battery. Panda power to the rescue...IMG_20221106_104944.thumb.jpg.f595873e3cf315d3e4fb4613e7530844.jpg

Viscous fan and coupling off and the target was revealed IMG_20221106_130034.thumb.jpg.c08b2c8622df53b7d823fe4f121b364f.jpg

Once the coolant was drained and the belt and tensioner removed 6 bolts freed the alternator from the block.IMG_20221106_130423.thumb.jpg.1010c3db9c6f58af0098c1e4161a6d57.jpg

Now, this is where I made a booboo. I ordered up a rectifier which appeared pretty quickly. I stripped the old alternator down to fit the new rectifier.


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Friday afternoon arrived and an early finish from work meant I could crack on. Alternator back together and fitted back into the car. I decided to fire it up before adding coolant just to be sure. 

Good job as it was still overcharging 😭

So, what I learned on Friday was that the rectifier  converts the AC voltage generated by the alternator to DC. Its the voltage regulator  (highlighted below) that maintains it at the 13-14v needed to run the electrics


And lo, there was swearing.

However, not to be defeated I set off for the local scrappy on Saturday morning and found a 4.4 Rangey and X5, both of which liberated regulators.



Back out, stripped down and back together and, finally, the correct voltage.


Thank fuck for that!

Oh, and inb4 the OmGaLlLaNdRoVeRsBrEaK brigade, its a BMW part!

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  • dome changed the title to Domes shonky autos-New shite-Incontinent Panda and overcharged Rangey
  • 3 weeks later...

Well, things have escalated quickly with the Panda.

Despite applying heat/plusgas and being VERY careful trying to remove the exhaust manifold studs 3 of them sheared off. Bastard.

I have tried.

Left handed drill bits.

Welding a nut onto the stud.

All efforts failed🙄



Safe to say I don't have the skills/patience for either of those things so I've been strategically ignoring it.

At present I could scrap it and get my money back but I don't like being beaten.

It's not a bad example and being a 2011 car with 72k miles and £30 a year road tax it should be worth fixing. 


So, the head is shortly coming off it and it's getting fixed by someone who has a clue.

I've ordered up a head gasket kit and will chuck a new timing belt on it at the same time. 

I'm taking this as a learning opportunity - I've never done valve stem oil seals before so will use this little 8 valve engine as practice for the Mantas Duratec. 

It's stripped to a bare block and awaiting shiny bits coming from the U.S. and Musselburgh amongst other places. The block will get painted and then I can start assembling the bottom end. 

Spec of the engine will be

High Comp pistons

Stage 3 cams

New valve springs.

This should give the Manta 200bhp at the wheels which with it weighing around a tonne will make it go fast enough for me🙂




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  • dome changed the title to Domes shonky auto-Panda Problems
  • dome changed the title to Domes shonky auto-Panda Problems and Manta Mods

Pulled the head off it tonight. Bit of an arse of a job but not as bad as a Clio 172. 

Don't you love it when the tools are worth more than the car?


Heed aff


Heed on (bench)


I've got a head set with valve stem oil seals, figured I might as well change them on this as practice for the Mantas head.

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Manta Duratec block cleaned up and sprayed with hight temp aluminium paint-should last longer than trying to polish up the block.




I'll give it another couple of coats and then can move on to the rebuild - I picked up new crank and big end bearings yesterday 

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  • 1 month later...

Time for an update. What news of the Panda, I hear no-one ask. 

Well, I should have listened to Chris Packham



I killed it😳

TLDR the timing tools I ordered were for the non VVT Panda which 99.9999% of these things are. 

Mine wasn't.

It fired up and idled fine, first time I tried to give it an Italian tuneup bad things happened. Expensive things. 

It's been scrapped, the hateful little piece of shit. 

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So, the Panda was gone. Frustrating but the thing had fought me at every turn. Fuck it, what's next?

I spent a week or two perusing the usual suspects and viewing a few things nut nothing was worth saving.

I resolved to give up. Last Tuesday I turned up to my usual MTB night ride and one of my friends said"I've just bought a new car, want to buy my old one?"

You can guess the outcome...

So, what have I bought?

It's a 55 plate VW Golf 1.6 FSI SE. My mate was the second owner having had it for 8 years. I have the original bill of sale for the first owner who was  70 years old when she picked it up. Not often I can say I'm the youngest person that's owned a car...






The drivers front wing is rough as the rear right hand door. Fortunately these bits both bolt on(door skins are removable on these) so I'll keep my eyes out for one breaking in the correct colour.

Naturally, being a VAG car it had the usual


A quick poke with Carista confirmed the code was for the EGR valve. I pulled it off but it was clean so i wasn't sure why it was giving a code until I removed the top plastic cover.



There should be teeth all the way round that big cog-the vale must have been sticking and repeated attempts to open it had stripped the teeth.

Now I'm no fan of EGRs but I'm even less of a fan of persistent EMLs which means I might miss another problem. 

A trip to the local scrappies revealed a solution.


That one looks a bit better...

I fitted that and took it for it's first drive on a mix of Motorways and A roads.

The economy was impressive.



It drives very well, unlike most of the end of life VAG scrap I've been used to. My mate looked after it well so I've got a full service history with it.

There is a judder when pulling away from a standstill, the gearbox mount is pumped though so I've ordered a new one of those.

It'll get that and a service and then I'm going to just use it. As much as I love the Rangey I do like the idea of something simple and reliable I can just jump in and drive.

I'll run the Golf til it's MOT is due(April) then hopefully get it a pass and get it sold on-it's just a wee bit small for carting my MTB about.

The Rangey may appear on here for sale, it'll be a sad day but I've had it over 2 years which is a long time for me to own any car!

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So the Rangey and Kangoo both had burning oil smells around them which was annoying me. When the Panda went I spent some time on these as they'd both been neglected.

I knew the Rangey needed a rocker cover gasket-I'd changed the first one over a year ago but it was such an arse of a job that I'd ignored the other one. 

With the rocker cover off you can see the clearance you have


Yeah, that's tight. The design of the gasket means you can't use zip ties to hold it in place so it locates correctly for added fun*


The old one had been there a while and also been professionally fitted. Did I work on this before?



To be fair I worked out the best way to fit the new one was a thin bead of sealant around the rocker cover then put the new gasket on and leave it to dry. This meant it couldn't move as I maneuvered it into place. In theory. So maybe the last person that was in here wasn't that daft. The gasket was old and cracked so had been there a long time. This technique did work so fitting the new gasket was a lot easier than the other side had been

It seemed sorted for the next few hundred miles but the oil smell returned-a feel of the gasket revealed it was leaking again and wasn't seated properly on one corner. I undid the bolts and managed to get it back into place, we'll see how long that lasts...


The Kangoo had an oil leak from t he top of the rocker cover. There are two possible culprits-the dephaser solenoid and the crankcase ventilation doohicky. I'd replaced the solenoid seal which wasn't in great condition but there was still oil leaking. I popped off the crankcase breather and the gasket had definitely seen better days. Common problem on these, the solution is to do away with the gasket and use RTV. 




This seems to have cured things which is nice.

It's off in next week to get a custom stainless exhaust fitted. My homebuilt bodge job lasted 3 years so I can't complain, it'll be good to have a non blowing exhaust on it again.  It'll still be stealth looking though with a downturned tip, I'll stick with the stealth look for it.

Then it'll be MOT time-its 3rd MOT in my ownership!

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  • dome changed the title to Domes shonky autos-Panda's Extinct, I've taken up Golf instead. Rangey and Kangoo no longer smoking too
2 hours ago, loserone said:


Hear you had an early finish today, did you see my new* car?

Lol, news travels fast. I was in the vicinity of your new chariot today but as the weather was clucking horrible I wasn't hanging around outside in the scrapyard waiting area to look at your new car😉

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  • dome changed the title to Domes shonky autos-Kangoo Exhaust and MOT, Rangey suspension troubles

The Kangoo exhaust has finally been fixed. I really, really wish I'd done this sooner. My standard 172 exhaust never really sealed properly and knocked off the axle most of the time, although a days drag racing at Crail did actually cure this til the bit of Freelander system I'd used to make it fit gave up completely at the back end of last year..

Shout out to Reaper Exhausts in Kirkcaldy, a fellow Clio botherer. He did a cracking job of fitting the biggest boxes he could under the van and dealt with the super tight clearance between the lowered beam and the floor. Of course I had to keep the standard looking downturned tip for the stealth look.

Not much to see from the back.


But if I reverse over you your last view will be of a very well made exhaust.



Suitably buoyed by this I stuck it in for an MOT yesterday and prepared it by giving it a wash. Be fine, right?




I picked up a gaiter kit and then collected the van. 


Aye, that's pumped. Should probably have fixed that after it was advised last year

Track rod split, thankfully I'd replaced both inner and outer since I bought this so it came apart easily.


New boot on and back together


And 25 minutes after picking it up it was back round for a retest.



Next up pads and discs, then it's off to @GingerNuttz to get a new wing as the one on it really lets it down.


Oh the exhaust-It manages to be quieter for cruising and at idle but louder on full throttle and according to my ass dyno it feels quicker too. Win win!





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The Rangey had given me occasional suspension worries recently with a variety of warnings but thankfully it maintained ride height and didn't FTP. I duly ignored this for a while but reset everything with the code reader and took it a drive. After 10 miles or so, just as it was settling down to motorway setting (it drops 20mm at 70mph) the warnings came back. I went home, plugged in the code reader and here's what i got.



OK, rear height sensors then. But what's this about Canbus error? I googled the shit out of it until I found this interesting post on FFRR.com-a great resource for these things.


Interesting. Lets have a look at the old height sensors then.


I hate working on the rear of this thing. The front is fine but the rear is a cunt to get in the air. Here we are with 2 trolley jacks and 4 axle stands as well as the wheels under the sills and I was still shitting myself. They say you can do this from underneath without even jacking it up, that might be true on a ramp but fuck rolling around under it. At least this way I could keep myself out of the way a bit more.


Here's what the sensors look like, a simple hall sensor with an arm connected to the suspension arm to tell the ECU what is happening.


LHS, the one that came up as faulty-the wiring doesn't look too clever here



RHS wiring was fine but the bottom bolt had seized into the arm of the sensor, I think that might be why it was getting invalid readings.

2 new sensors were ordered up and fitted with new hardware and the crusty connector was given a good seeing to. 


Back down and she's looking a bit arse high.


I reconnected the battery and fired it up, expecting to have to calibrate the suspension. However it sorted itself out and seemed to respond to requests to change ride height quicker.  Another 10 mile test drive and it behaved perfectly and the time taken to change from normal to motorway and back seems quicker. Result!

Of course having sat for a while I have a sticky front caliper-I had a look and he piston doesn't look great. At £35 for a new caliper it's hardly going to break the bank so I'll get one ordered up and fitted.

And then... it's going up for sale. I honestly love the thing but it's time for a change. I've had it over 2 years which is a long time for me. I'll miss the amazing waftability of it and it's still a great looking car even at 21 years old so will be hard to replace. I'll get an ad up on here first before I brave the great unwashed. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'd been scouring the usual places for a new wing and door skin for the golf, they really let it down. 

Patience prevailed and I found one breaking locally on Friday - 15 minutes away!

Both are a lot better than what was on it. IMG_20230224_180108.thumb.jpg.6b5de15765ff18237a58c091c1e1400b.jpgIMG_20230224_180105.thumb.jpg.f3c105093292ed3dcae55bec411fc73f.jpg

Compare and contrast.




I got stuck in today and swapped them over. The hardest bit of the door skin is getting the handle off. It appears easy in the YouTube videos but I had to fight both the donor and mine.

The front fell off.


The side fell off.



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  • dome changed the title to Domes shonky autos-Rangey for sale, Golf no longer rusty
  • dome changed the title to Domes shonky autos-Winging it with the Kangoo and BMW fettling

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