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Squire_Dawson

Talbot Solara GLS

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My original thread had been lost in the forum upgrade. In a nutshell, I bought a 1980 Talbot 1.6 which needs work to put back on the road.

 

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It seems a nice car and should be useful on the motorways when traffic actually exceeds crawling speeds. The main jobs are to find a replacement carburetor, which is not easy, some welding and a good service. There are water leaks into the front footwells, possibly from the windscreen. Just running it up and down I find the clutch pedal very heavy - I don't know if this is a characteristic of these cars or the hydraulics need attention. Certainly all the fluids will be flushed out and renewed. The gearchange is the vaguest, sloppiest thing ever. The Allegro's (which are accurate in the first place), is very precise and positive in action. The boot slam panel has rusted away badly and, given that the metal here is very thin gauge, I am not sure how to go about repairing and strengthening it. I'll probably use a glass fibre kit if it can't be welded.

 

Now, recent progress has been slow, but are not French cars famous for electrical problems? Aye, we have them a-plenty. I am convinced that British cars have the best electrics in the world - all soundly engineered and excellent wiring diagrams. Foreigners have never been any good with electrics. When viewing the car, the indication for the side and headlamps worked - now it doesn't, along with the panel lamps. Both interior lamps fail to work. The passenger side electric window went down, but would not go up, so I had to tape up the gap to keep the weather out until I could solve it.

 

Removing the door card was easy and shows evidence of wax injection.

 

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It followed that if the motor was working then it must be a wiring fault, so I swapped the two motor connections around...

 

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...and was able to put the window up using the 'down' switch. So far I haven't got anywhere with the other electrical faults. Bizarrely, there is a plug and socket in the loom at the engine bay/scuttle, with three red wires, two with coloured tracers. In the absence of a wiring diagram I don't know what these do, if anything. Infuriatingly, the wires are too short for the connections to reach by a good few inches! Grrr!

 

 

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Excellent.

 

That engine bay looks awfully like one I was peering at this afternoon - very Simca. I take it the 1.6 is just a bored-out variant of the 1440 used in the Rancho, Horizon etc?

 

My favourite bit is the glass expansion bottle, which looks like it belongs in a Victorian chemist's shop.

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Excellent.

 

That engine bay looks awfully like one I was peering at this afternoon - very Simca. I take it the 1.6 is just a bored-out variant of the 1440 used in the Rancho, Horizon etc?

 

 

Yep the 1592 engine is a larger variant of the 1442 engine. The Alpine/Solara Horizon inner substructures are virtually totally Simca 1100.

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Do they have the same incredibly rattly tappets as the horizon? Ah, sounds of the 80’s

 

I remember my mate having a Solara as an old beater while they were in their death spiral worthless phase, it had a bit of an overheating issue and he wasn't exactly on top of maintenance.. One night after about 5 miles of driving with the temperature needle bent round the peg In a bid to get home without having to stop again, there was an almighty bang and sound of debris bouncing off the road. We pulled up, opened the bonnet and peered through the steam...so..err..where has the expansion tank gone?

 

Up until that point he hadn't realised it was made of glass. Think he replaced it with the plastic item from a VW of some description and on it ran. For a while at least.

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The plug in the engine bay is/was a diagnostic socket.

 

Thanks, presumably the other one has the same function?

 

This is beautiful!

 

My favourite bit is the clock on the dash, is it original or a retrofit?

 

Original Jaeger clock.

 

Somebody on the old thread said the small bubbles under the vinyl would be rust because Talbot did not paint the roof. This is annoying. Having driven it up and down, smoke came into the car through the vents. A plume of smoke rose from the engine. I think there's some oil on the manifold just burning off. Tappets clatter slightly but it hasn't got thoroughly warm to be that audible. Simca should be a good engine given that they were a long-established manufacturer who were familiar with Ford designs.

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People keep complaining that Autoshite isn't what it used to be but back then it was a hub of great international activity, cunningly disguised as a dozen blokes posting up photos of Talbot Solaras, now it is several dozen blokes actually owning Talbot Solaras plus Ranchos, Visa's, Sierras, and burnt out Disastras disguised as a hub of great international activity.

 

Less talking, more action.

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Somebody on the old thread said the small bubbles under the vinyl would be rust because Talbot did not paint the roof. This is annoying..

l

 

That would be me! All this Solara and Rancho talk on here has got me pining for another Talbot of some description

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are not French cars famous for electrical problems? Aye, we have them a-plenty. I am convinced that British cars have the best electrics in the world - all soundly engineered and excellent wiring diagrams. Foreigners have never been any good with electrics.

Weren't these built in Ryton?

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 Glad to see that this car has finally found a new home, been for sale on and off for a couple of years.

 

The gearbox is the Citroen 428 unit, which was an interim unit before the Peugeot BE1 was fitted a couple of years later.

 

Re carb, first off just remove the slow running jets, one in each side (brass slot head screw) once out pull jet out of the screw housing and blow them clear, as they will almost certainly be blocked.

 

Heavy clutch may be a partially seized slave cylinder, readily available on ebay  

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Thanks, presumably the other one has the same function?

 

 

Original Jaeger clock.

 

Somebody on the old thread said the small bubbles under the vinyl would be rust because Talbot did not paint the roof. This is annoying. Having driven it up and down, smoke came into the car through the vents. A plume of smoke rose from the engine. I think there's some oil on the manifold just burning off. Tappets clatter slightly but it hasn't got thoroughly warm to be that audible. Simca should be a good engine given that they were a long-established manufacturer who were familiar with Ford designs.

Rocker cover gasket may be damaged, or more likely the nuts just need nipping up, especially the 4 along the back.

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Somebody on the old thread said the small bubbles under the vinyl would be rust because Talbot did not paint the roof.

 

I have never seen the roof of any car having a vinyl top being painted.

I'm not saying nobody did it, but not a single car with a vinyl roof I had was ever painted underneath.

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Can't say if this is the case with this marvelous example of the species, but there was a thriving trade at the Bristol main Talbot dealer in Solaras and Alpines with non-factory fitted sunroofs, vinyl roofs, garish paint jobs and unusual wheel trims. Me and my dad had strong suspicions that every one had some sort of cosmetic issue occur during delivery to the dealer, and they covered this up with vinyl and cheap (usually signal yellow) paint, after cutting a manual tilting glass sunroof into the roof. This suspicion was not unfounded - he ordered a Solara (a 1.6 LS iirc; the only car he ever bought new) but from a local dealer, not the big one in Bristol, and his one indulgence was the metallic pale green paint job that was on the options list. The day of collection from the dealer arrived, we drove out there - to be told its delivery had been delayed. Very much disappointed, we drove home, but on the way, spotted the arse end of his new car (reg RYD 693W) sticking out of a spray booth in a garage round the corner. We stopped. We inquired. It had been scraped royally down one side during delivery and was receiving a quick blow over. My dad, not knowing any better, or probably not wanting to wait any longer, took delivery of it two days later.

 

He kept the car for some years. He did lots of miles in it. I learnt to drive in it, I passed my test in it. Of course the panels faded completely different amounts. He traded it in at another Talbot dealership in Bath for a GLS in a fetching two tone metallic brown over champagne. This had all the toys - PAS, trip computer (including instantaneous mpg, which never worked), a strange suede-like fabric in a very pale beige, head restraints, hockey stick arm rests, remote control door mirrors (not electric), rear centre armrest, pepperpot alloy wheels. It might even have had central locking. I think it threw a conrod on the M4 within a couple of years, got a 'Silverseal' engine, which just managed to limp along long enough for him to trade it in for a Carina hatchback in claret.

 

Sorry, a Solara is all it takes to get me off down memory lane!!!

 

TL;DR - I think a few vinyl roofs were dealer fitted, not factory, so you might find paint underneath some of them.

 

Question: the top trim level for the Solara when my dad bought his first was the SX - was this only available as an auto?

 

PS: Well bought, sir

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TL;DR - I think a few vinyl roofs were dealer fitted, not factory, so you might find paint underneath some of them.

 

Question: the top trim level for the Solara when my dad bought his first was the SX - was this only available as a auto?

 

The Vinyl roof was standard fitment on both the Gls and the Sx,so this roof would have been fitted from the factory new. The Automatic transmission was indeed standard on the Sx spec Solaras from launch. For the 82 model year you could then specify the 5 speed manual as an no cost option.

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Can't say if this is the case with this marvelous example of the species, but there was a thriving trade at the Bristol main Talbot dealer in Solaras and Alpines with non-factory fitted sunroofs, vinyl roofs, garish paint jobs and unusual wheel trims. Me and my dad had strong suspicions that every one had some sort of cosmetic issue occur during delivery to the dealer, and they covered this up with vinyl and cheap (usually signal yellow) paint, after cutting a manual tilting glass sunroof into the roof. This suspicion was not unfounded - he ordered a Solara (a 1.6 LS iirc; the only car he ever bought new) but from a local dealer, not the big one in Bristol, and his one indulgence was the metallic pale green paint job that was on the options list. The day of collection from the dealer arrived, we drove out there - to be told its delivery had been delayed. Very much disappointed, we drove home, but on the way, spotted the arse end of his new car (reg RYD 693W) sticking out of a spray booth in a garage round the corner. We stopped. We inquired. It had been scraped royally down one side during delivery and was receiving a quick blow over. My dad, not knowing any better, or probably not wanting to wait any longer, took delivery of it two days later.

 

He kept the car for some years. He did lots of miles in it. I learnt to drive in it, I passed my test in it. Of course the panels faded completely different amounts. He traded it in at another Talbot dealership in Bath for a GLS in a fetching two tone metallic brown over champagne. This had all the toys - PAS, trip computer (including instantaneous mpg, which never worked), a strange suede-like fabric in a very pale beige, head restraints, hockey stick arm rests, remote control door mirrors (not electric), rear centre armrest, pepperpot alloy wheels. It might even have had central locking. I think it threw a conrod on the M4 within a couple of years, got a 'Silverseal' engine, which just managed to limp along long enough for him to trade it in for a Carina hatchback in claret.

 

Sorry, a Solara is all it takes to get me off down memory lane!!!

 

TL;DR - I think a few vinyl roofs were dealer fitted, not factory, so you might find paint underneath some of them.

 

Question: the top trim level for the Solara when my dad bought his first was the SX - was this only available as an auto?

 

PS: Well bought, sir

 

 

 

Indeed quite a few Talbots were sold new with an after market vinyl roof, my everyday hack seen here was so equipped.  The way to tell is the lack of rust under the vinyl, and also the trim used along the 'join' on the rear was usually alloy and not stainless as used by the factory.

 

The GLS became a very high spec car once it replaced the SX -  the two tone car shown here likely the same as your Dad's, colour was Cafe Noir over Gilt Metallic.    

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I was spaffing over this on C&C! Well done for saving it, this must be one of the oldest Solaras in existence.

 

I know a couple of people who went to view it and were left disappointed as the seller's description left a lot to be desired and the pictures were taken quite some time ago. Glad you saw the potential* beneath the algae and rust and put your hand in your pocket. Top work sir!

 

The electric window fault sounds like a bad connection on the switch if it works one way but not the other. Pop it out, clean up the connections on it and the spade connectors onto it, and test it with the switch hanging loose before fitting it properly. If you don't get any joy, use some electrical contact cleaner (I use Silver Hook, brilliant stuff) with a long nozzle and spray a load into the switch and work the switch backwards and forwards a few times. I had to do a load of cleaning on various corroded electrical connections on the Sierra Base as that had been sitting around for ages outside (though not as long as this car) so I'd put money on corrosion being the cause of most of your electrical issues. Good luck!

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