I'm a masochist from Leeds who is running two rusty, worn out Triumph Dolomites as my only transport in rural Aberdeenshire. You might recognise me from various other forums and Facebook groups. Realistically I need to buy a modern car of some sort, but instead I find myself looking at Ã‚Â£300 Citroen BXs and Triumph Acclaims on Gumtree and thinking "yeah, that'd fit right in with the rest of the broken cars I can't afford".
On to the cars, the main attraction being my 1976 1850HL "50 Shades of Yellow" that I bought for Ã‚Â£850 and is currently my daily driver, here is a picture of it before I sanded off some surface rust and sprayed it badly in the wrong shade of yellow with rattle cans:
Within a month of purchase I managed to plant it in to a steel fence backwards after a botched gear change on a wet roundabout and ruined the N/S rear wing, although judging by the other dent that's packed with filler it looks like somebody had already done the same. I also managed to destroy a halfshaft and one of my Sprint alloys (good for an extra 15hp) in the incident, so now it's sitting on it's original steelies but painted black (good for an extra 5hp).
It's only broken down on me twice. once with some sort of fuel delivery related problem which may or may not have been an empty fuel tank and once when the thermostat jammed shut and it overheated and blew out some O-rings for the cooling system. It has recently developed a taste for coolant and oil which is rather annoying, although it's done 89,300 miles which is about 80,000 more miles than BL engineering is designed to last, I'm keeping my eye on eBay for replacement engines...
I tried to keep ahead of the rust a bit by rubbing down the arches and re-painting them, but apparently rattle can paint isn't great when you are spraying it at -5C, it also highlighted how although my car might have been Inca Yellow in 1976 it's now more of a "cat piss" sort of shade. So I ended up with the wrong shade of yellow which has rust coming back through after 5 weeks. Did I mention I'm incompetent?
The other car is the first "classic" car I bought, so I can't bear to sell it. It's a '77 Dolomite 1300 and it cost Ã‚Â£1400 (about Ã‚Â£400 too much) and has been nothing but a pain in the arse:
It looks much prettier (from 100 yards) but that's most due to the darker paintwork hiding the rust. It lives a mollycoddled life in my garage, where it somehow still manages to rust, and is utterly rubbish. 0-60 is measured on a calendar, top speed is 80ish but at that point it uses more oil than petrol, it rarely ventures over 50mph and if you encounter an incline of any sort you can kiss that sort of speed goodbye, along with about Ã‚Â£20 of 20W50 as it vanishes out of the exhaust in the form of blue smoke.
One of the PO's had clearly never heard of the term "oil change" so it developed into brown sludge that coated everything internally with the next owner(s) blissfully pouring fresh oil on top of it. This lasted until about 600 miles into my ownership when there was muffled "pop" from the engine bay and the car became a 3-cylinder. The cause was catastrophic wear to the top end causing a rocker arm to snap:
As this was my first classic car I'd assumed it was supposed to sound like the engine was full of marbles, it wasn't.
I put the engine back together with second hand bits declared it utterly fucked and promptly did another 5000 miles with it. After about 3500 of those miles the oil burning started, valve seals have gone so it's been relegated to my parent's garage as a backup car and something to take to local car shows as the 1850 is now embarrassingly ugly. I'm keeping my eye on eBay for replacement engines (deja vu, anybody?) Oh, I also recently reversed it into a parked Ford Fiesta and royally fucked up the rear bumper, rear panel and bootlid. Did I mention I'm incompetent?
There have been two other cars in my life. My first car, a 2008 Toyota Yaris 1.0 an it's replacement a 2012 Corsa 1.4T. I didn't really want either of them, but it's a long story involving my parents and poor life choices. Ask if you want to hear it!
So that's a brief summary of my current shite. If you want more pictures or details of anything do say as I've got photos of almost everything I'd done with the cars.
Now in my mucky hands is this S Type Mondeo Lincoln. It's not like a Mondeo Lincoln though, just uses some of the bits as it's from a time when jaguar was experiencing some 'technical' issues.
It has managed to hang onto the feel of a premium car but for the use of cost saving interior plastics made from the same gear that land Rover used in the discovery 2 of the same era, I know, I have one of those too! That has some BMW switches in it though.
This jaag was cheap. Why did I buy it? All I wanted really was a small convertible for the summer to smoke around in, this is the polar opposite.
The price was good but these cars are without their expensive issues. I liked the body. It's virtually rust free, a freak of nature and it had a set of premium tyres on it which suggested it's had some money chucked at it.
That's all I wanted really from it. The bolt on stuff and mechanicals are fairly easy to sort out, plus I can upgrade as I feel fit.
Today I've been bonding with this machine. It's got to beat the 3 series I have as a good daily or it's out. It's going to be a tall order, the 318 is bionic!
I have many miles to do in the next few months, I need a motorway cruiser auto. The odd jaunt for a few hundred miles is the 318's and my clutch legs limit!
Now, this car has been owned previously by a few members on here, the work it requires is because it is a cheap car and 20 years old and has a jaguar badge on it. There are a few issues with it.
As said, it has to be put into immediate service. I've owned it 2 days and it's already done over 300 miles, and will do all that again tomorrow! So let's get started!
After about 100 miles yesterday, I reversed it for the first time in my ownership and when braking the noise was alarming! Had a look and the outer rear brake pad was metal on the disc. I only had another 60 miles to go!
A phone call on the move saw a set in stock back home to be picked up. Sweet.
That was yesterday, I've got a day now to change the rear pads and sort out the dropped headlamps with a couple of screws... A couple of hours it'll be Sorted... He says...
WIND BACK CALIPERS! Yes, they are. My special tool? Sorry? What? No tool?
Well, I cobbled together a bar and a pair of molies but Christ, that was messing about! I wanted to secure the caliper to the mounting to hold it still but the sliders internal thread was cross threaded on both sliders, so I had to tap them out first. It worked but not without a fight. Then my neighbour came over to have a nose at the new aquisition... Him: Morning, how you getting on"?, Me: "Shit, you haven't got a brake caliper tool have you"? Him: "Yeah, I'll go get it".
Sticky slider syndrome ^
Fully padded up ^
I took a look around under there, it's nearly all shot. Most ball joints are exposed to the elements so all need replacing but not before a decent jet wash.
There's little play in the joints so all that goes on the list of parts and graft! Wheels on, I loosened and torqued all the wheel nuts around the car and done the Tyre pressures, we were running soft all round.
Next was the front lights. A screw mod can be done but I took the back off the units and they were, well toast. Nothing much holding the inner lenses still at all. There was only one thing for it...
I had readied myself for this. I got hold of a replacement lamp mounting kit with all parts made from nylon. This involved dissecting the lamp which was tough! The mounts that came out, or what was left of them were weaker than Jacobs crackers and just crumbled. To get the bumper off, the plastic under tray bolts were all seized so I had to grind them off. More knackered parts were seen. The auto box cooler has shed most of it's cooling fins, the radiator is sweating and the power steering is hemorrhaging fluid on full lock. There's also a coolant leak at the thermostat housing and there's a high pitch whine at 1000 RPM which turns out to be the alternator. More for the list.
Still, back to the lights. I need to be able to see tonight so I took a level off the tourings lights and marked on to a wheely bin, these are pretty spot on. Then I can use the bin for the Jaags lights and I won't be far off
Going back together nicely it was a good time to run some tcut over the faded lenses. They need a more intense compound and a machine but will do for now.
Looks smart yo!
Then it got dark...
I then drove 120 miles in it and drove it like it was stolen. It had it, all of it! Slight brake judder at 90 and I couldn't get the alignment done as I had no time (see above pics)
So now we have to price up priorities like the knackered joints on the rear and a full service, two Goodyears and investigate the power steering leak which, I'll hazard a guess at the rack seals are fubard.
So in summary, I got a bargain barge that has it's fair share of issues, the interior quality is a bit shocking in places but when the hammer is down, none of this matters! It fits in, it can be a proper giffer cruiser with radio two on at 30mph but it'll turn into a bruiser with some oldskool hardcore at a tonne. It's come to a good home.
Train tickets booked from a train station 30 miles away to save Â£9 on the recommendation of the Mrs
Mrs booked and primed ready to drop me off at said train station.
Mobile tool kit primed and ready, missing almost every vital component due to EU regulations about leccy tape and screwdrivers on trains (I left them all at my mums house yesterday).
If I do break down, I should have something to listen to while I work out whether I'm with the AA or RAC or none of the above.
Not pictured: pile of cash
HI GUYS, WHATS UP?
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After a year of very little vehicular tinkering, mostly due to lack of time and monies, I am just as broke but back fettling festering fucking heaps.
If you've been here long enough to remember 'bump for a real thread', why the best Peugeot 405s have 20p stuck in the handbrake or the significance behind D701 SWL then you may remember me from such hits as welding up a chronically rotten Lancia Y10
or pouring LHM all over the local area in an incontinent XM
AND MUCH MUCH MORE
Between then and now I have been mostly quiet on here but have still been working on multiple cars in New Zealand which mostly made the scrap in the UK look showroom fresh, there's some good stories in that lot that I'll try and type up for your unenjoyment frm time to time if I'm running out of actual new content again.
But onto the latest tat faffing:
In 2009 an 83 Ford Fiesta with no MOT and a fair bit of rot around the edges turned up on the driveway of my great aunty. It was a bit grotty around the edges and the old lady who owned it had given up driving so it was just sat there waiting to be taken away an cubed. Being 17 and desperate for wheels, I spotted it and persuaded my Dad that we could take it on and fix it up, which we did and got it through an MOT.
A year went by where the holes in the wings got filled with expanding builders foam and filler, the steels were replaced with RS 4 spokes from a SuperSport and the chunky bumpers were swapped out with earlier chrome ones. While it was slowly being improved I knew it needed more substantial work and over the year I got hold of a genuine pair of front wings and a pattern front panel, then in March 2011 I taugt myself how to weld, on the few holes in the boot floor before moving to tackling the very sad inner front wings and front panel. After a respray, I hurriedly chucked it all back together in 2 days and drove it to Glasgow for the annual Mk1 Fiesta meet at Loch Lomand.
Its looked really rather snazzy
That was 9 years ago now though. For a couple of years I tried to buy other cars to use through winter and keep it nice, but a combination of the Fiesta being amazingly good in snow and the general unreliability of my winter beaters meant that this got used in all weathers. Then I left for four years and it was left at the back of my parents drive. Time has not been kind, rust has been bubbling through on the seams on the front and rear panels, on the wings and the scuttle for some time. On coming back, I used it for a few months through last spring and from a distance it looked grand, but up close you could see it had been a bit neglected. I ended up getting a Ford Puma and the Fiesta sat languishing at the back of the drive again for a good 6 months or so while I tried to find the time to fix it, then lock down occurred!
I started on the back, no photos of what it looked like before I started but it really wasn't pretty. Holes on either side of the boot floor, a big old hole on the passenger side of the rear panel and a very scruffy edge to the drivers side where it meets the rear quarter. After scrubbing back all the rust, trating the surface rust and welding in new metal, it looked like this after a first smear of filler.
With a bit more work and some paint, it now looks like this. I've run out of paint and am struggling to get hold of any decent Ford 'Ocean Blue' at the moment but I'll get some more layers on as soon as I can.
The corners of the boot floor have also had a tickle with the MIG:
The seam behind the boot latch, under the boot seal had also rotted out, so that's also been ground out and new metal let in. I haven't got too prissy with the filler and how this edge looks, seeing as it will be hidden.
On the original restoration I did have the good idea to make the wings bolt on as they were originally held on with spot welds and I wanted to be able to get behind them to clean out and rust proof behind. Obviously these good intentions never came to anything and they've not moved until I pulled them off about 2 weeks ago. The passenger side needed a bit of complicated work close to the leading edge of the door. leading into the inner arch and floor pan. No before pictures but it looks alright all welded up and covered in seam sealer, red oxide and Hammerite. I've got some proper Dinitrol stone chip stuff on the way which I'll spray around under here to try and protect it a bit better than it was before.
The drivers side is probably a bit worse, a hole in an awkward spot at the bottom behind the wheel , a hole below the scuttle drain and a big old load of rust all around a box section that runs across the back of the inner wheel arch.
Today I managed to weld up the majority of this mess There is no longer a big hole in the floor and the bit below the scuttle drain is solid. Just the outer edge down next to the door and the outside rectangle on the box section to fix up. Probably an afternoons work if you exclude waiting for paint to dry. I need to make a decision on if I try and find the spot welds for the front panel and take it off to de-rust it properly. It looks a bit nasty on the front edge, but behind, my cheap seam sealer and hammerite has cracked, letting water into the joints between the panel and the inner wings and cross member. I don't really want to take it off as it's going to be a bastard to line all the panels up again but it might be for the best in the long run unless there is some fantastic (probably Bilt Hamber) product that can creep into the joints and fuck up the rust.
There's also this spot under the windscreen on the scuttle panel which I'm dreading, if only because the screen will need to come out which will almost certainly mean it will break and then it will start raining.
I'll make some decision on this tomorrow. I've got some time on my hands because tomorrow the Fiesta will have to wait because it's chod collection time!
To be continued.
By Peter C
Woke up this morning, had a little time before I had to leave the house for work, had a quick look at what’s new for sale on Retro Rides and saw an ad for a W124 200E manual, located 15 miles from home. I had no intention of buying a car today but I had to have it! I called the seller and arranged a viewing.
2 x rusty front wings (TADTS)
1 x rusty rear arch
Needs a polish
Tracking is out because new track rod end was fitted for MoT
Engine has oil leak/s
It’s a W124 200E!
5 speed manual transmission
Brand new MoT
Superb MoT history
4 x as new Continental tyres
Last owner for 15 years, her husband before that for 4 years
Very tidy MB-Tex interior
All electrics work
The dealer kindly delivered the car to my house but I managed a pez station shot on route:
Remove front wings, cut away rust and apply plenty of wob.
In-situ similar repair for rear arch
Clean and polish
Leave patina and enjoy the car as it is
I will update this thread once progress is made.
Hopefully these two will become good friends.