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Zelandeth

Zel's Motoring Adventures...Lada, Citroen, Mercedes & AC Model 70 - 16/08 - Painting the Invacar...

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Getting the impression that there are two types of paint on this car: the stuff which will come right off and that which is utterly immovable.

I think I'll just go round the car getting the easier stuff off then seeing what's left.

Again today I didn't really have much time to play with but was determined to make at least some headway.

So played automotive Tetris so I could get the Invacar actually out of the garage and see what I was doing.

Then slathered things with paint stripper again.

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Then ensued a good amount of waiting patiently followed by scrubbing and scraping.  Finally the pressure washer was employed to get rid of the residue so I could see what I was left with.

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I need to pick up a better paint scraper, this one is so blunt as to be essentially useless.  Think I need to be a bit more patient too to just see if it will slowly eat through the sections which have refused to budge so far. 

Nice to see the roof to bulkhead seal showing through again...feels like we are seeing progress though.

I'd really like to get a couple of hours in a stretch where I could just leave the stripper to work and hopefully get a couple of panels properly cleared.

 

In other news, with the van having ceased squeaking at idle a really horrible sounding rattle/buzz was brought to the forefront.

Initially this sounded like it might be related to the belt tensioner, but a bit of digging revealed a far simpler and easily resolved issue.  The U-bolt holding the exhaust downpipe onto the bracket on the gearbox had stripped the threads so it had worked loose.  This clamp was reused because the one supplied with the exhaust was fractionally too small.

I made up a spacer with a few washers to pack it out returning the nuts to a solid bit of thread, allowing it to be tightened back up properly.

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Nice simple fix.

While I was under there I had a look at all the joints on the system for any signs of leaks now it's got a few miles on.

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No tell tale sooty marks anywhere that I can see, nor could I hear anything chuffing so I'll take that as a win.

 

So the Invacar still needs paintwork, but at least the van is quieter at idle now.  I hadn't realised quite how awful it was until sorting this!

Edit: Yes I know the front exhaust hanger is missing the rubber.  This is another "things I've had to do to make a really cheap exhaust fit without touching stuff it shouldn't" and not buzzing.  Think this being fitted made it lift another hanger elsewhere off so the whole thing wound up sitting squint.  Just removing the rubber block seemed to be the easiest solution...the system is more than sufficiently supported.

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Well that's been a worthy experiment.  Using the cling film didn't seem to make a huge difference.  We did get a bit more paint off the rear moulding though.  It's a tricky balance with the scraper... there's about a 3% difference between the pressure needed to shift the paint and needed to dig into the gel coat, which is annoying.

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Did a little experiment later in the day with leaving the stripper on one of the really stubborn areas for a bit longer.  The results were... annoying.

Turns out that if you leave this stuff long enough it will attack the gel coat.

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In spite of that though the paint ain't any more interested in moving than it was before.  This is going to come down to a sharp scraper and patience it looks like. 

 

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Given they would probably wind up doing things the same way I am (guessing that media blasting isn't an option - especially as the paint is as hard if not harder than the material under it) so hours and hours of work by hand.  Probably wouldn't be looking at much change from £500 I'd guess as a total "sticking my finger in the wind" estimate.

It's not the worst job in the world, just time consuming.  If it wasn't so thick we could just look at painting over it as it's plainly not going anywhere, but it's just so thick...seems a bit ask for a high build primer...

If it was a metal body it would be a dead easy job...remove all the fixtures and fittings, then hit it with the media blaster... especially on such a small car with so little stuff to remove it would be a doddle.  ...Granted, a metal British microcar from the nearly 70s that's all steel would most likely have dissolved long since!

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at least the roof unbolts easy enough to make working on that potentially easier? :) (plus it would be an opportunity to go round driving roofless to flummox the locals even more :mrgreen: )

would taking the sander to the hard spots be an option?

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I hope you are wearing a PP3 rated respirator that's fitted properly to the face! I dread to think what is in that paint and how harmful the dust off is.

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50 minutes ago, SiC said:

I hope you are wearing a PP3 rated respirator that's fitted properly to the face! I dread to think what is in that paint and how harmful the dust off is.

Using [URL=https://www.toolstation.com/gvs-p3r-half-mask-respirator/p42614]this[/URL] but generally working outside when I can and with the paint wet.  Scraping it at least doesn't raise dust.

 

It's one reason I'd rather remove it chemically than take the sander to it though!

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Okay.  I have officially given up trying to get sodding links to work any more.

This fscking editor is seriously making me consider ditching this as one of my regular sites...which is a shame as it's about the only one which hasn't turned to a ghost town courtesy of Facebook etc these days.

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Seems a stupidly backwards step though...I've been able to neatly integrate links for the last 20 years, why do I now need to leave a messy block of text in the middle of my post?

Sorry, just the way my brain works (yay for autism) means I find things like that disproportionately annoying and can result in my wanting to hurl my phone at the wall in a hurry.

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I have the same problem but since I've spent years on a forum that had the same software, but that software was 4 years out-of date, I've had no problem sticking a link into my posts. Now that this new forum is able to auto-embed YouTube links and Twitter videos, it shouldn't be too hard to auto-embed other URLs.

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when you use the link function paste the url in top box the use lower box for your own link title

so- https://www.toolstation.com/gvs-p3r-half-mask-respirator/p42614

 

becomes this- link to respirator @ toolstation as used by Zelandeth for invacar shenangans but prolly shorter lol

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1 hour ago, Noel Tidybeard said:

when you use the link function paste the url in top box the use lower box for your own link title

so- https://www.toolstation.com/gvs-p3r-half-mask-respirator/p42614

 

becomes this- link to respirator @ toolstation as used by Zelandeth for invacar shenangans but prolly shorter lol

Not meaning to sound utterly dense...but what upper/lower box?  I only see one box...the one I'm typing in.

Not sure if this is just an issue when using a mobile device (as with the utterly maddening insistence of the cursor jumping back to the start of your post every time you return to editing).  Much as I'd love to never pick up a mobile device ever again, if I were to only post here when I actually have the luxury of sitting down at my desk and typing stuff up on an actual computer you'd probably see one or two posts a month from me at the most.  Yes, some of you may consider that an improvement... probably rightly so.

As it is, I'm mostly stuck posting from my phone...and I seem to keep finding ways that this new software version just isn't mobile friendly.  Which seems odd given how much the world as a whole seems to be moving away from desktop PCs..yes the old site was horrible on mobile, but at least you could force desktop mode there, the new version renders exactly the same irrespective of if I tick that box or not.

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Yeah the desktop site has this thingy 

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perhaps on your Phone you could try force a different user agent to try trick the site into giving you the desktop version?

(honestly sounds like a website bug if it wont give you the desktop site when you request it, cc @Slartibartfast )

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I think it's the website software being "too clever" to be honest.  I've been finding more sites lately which irrespective of whether you request the desktop site, if the site detects that the recipient is a mobile device it will force the mobile version... irrespective of if you've told your browser to load the desktop version.

Cineworld, I'm also looking in your direction.

To be fair, I never even thought about using the "insert this via this helper button" as I've never used that in my life so it just isn't part of the workflow my brain is used to.  I'll consider trying that next time, though it feels like a truly massively backwards step forcing people to use a dumbed down approach if they'd rather have control over their content as has been the norm for the last twenty years...BBCode has essentially been "standard" since the late 90s at least...if it ain't broke...

Obviously not the fault of the forum operators, just an utterly fluffing stupid design choice by the software developers in my opinion.

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This paint removal process I think is just going to be a long slog. 

Got a few better scrapers today and they're precisely zero help.  With the sharper blades they're just going straight through the paint and the gel coat, it's just too soft.  On a few of the larger flatter panels where there's a nice clean edge to the paint as it's been removed, using the blunt edge it's possible to work away at it...but I was successfully doing that with my old blunt scraper already.

Heat lifts the gel coat before the paint too, as I did poke it with the heat gun just to eliminate it as a potentially helpful tool.

I did bust the sander out again today just to see if I could flat back the area below the rear window where the surface was damaged by the paint stripper.  Looks like there's plenty of thickness to the gel coat to sort that out at least.

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There's quite a bit of pitting on the one panel...you can clearly see where the paint stripper was sitting the longest...

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No huge issue, it's nothing a really tiny amount of filler can't hide...just annoying to have made more work.

Next stop will be investigating soda blasting.  Either getting the kit to do it myself or getting someone in to do it.

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30 minutes ago, plasticvandan said:

I would have thought 80 grit on a da sander would have made short work of this?

The trick is trying to make light work of the paint but without sanding a hole in the panel under it...

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I think it's the website software being "too clever" to be honest.  I've been finding more sites lately which irrespective of whether you request the desktop site, if the site detects that the recipient is a mobile device it will force the mobile version... irrespective of if you've told your browser to load the desktop version.
Cineworld, I'm also looking in your direction.
To be fair, I never even thought about using the "insert this via this helper button" as I've never used that in my life so it just isn't part of the workflow my brain is used to.  I'll consider trying that next time, though it feels like a truly massively backwards step forcing people to use a dumbed down approach if they'd rather have control over their content as has been the norm for the last twenty years...BBCode has essentially been "standard" since the late 90s at least...if it ain't broke...
Obviously not the fault of the forum operators, just an utterly fluffing stupid design choice by the software developers in my opinion.


Zel, if the mobile version of the forum is irritating (and I agree, that’s how I found it - much improved over before but still not as good as desktop) then give Tapatalk a go. I use it and it makes life much simpler for me


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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8 hours ago, jumpingjehovahs said:

 


Zel, if the mobile version of the forum is irritating (and I agree, that’s how I found it - much improved over before but still not as good as desktop) then give Tapatalk a go. I use it and it makes life much simpler for me


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I have tried that, but just cannot seem to figure out how it's arranged...kinda like the modern versions of MS Office, despite giving myself a decent acclimatisation period I found I still felt like a five year old who's been asked to wire up the control system for the International Space Station.

As with so much technology these days I kind of feel like I'm just being left floundering cluelessly as "progress" marches forwards.

 

Back on topic...lost most of today as we were making our first trip over to the foster home currently caring for a rescue dog we're looking to adopt.  We really feel that this will do a lot to enrich the life of the one we already have, especially given the issues we've had with the communal dog club meaning that he doesn't get to socialise any where near as much as we'd like.

It's quite a long drawn out process, especially for a dog who is as timid as the one we've currently got our heart set on, but today was the first time we got to meet her.  Despite apparently usually being petrified of new people for ages, she was happily seeking affection and wanting to play with us in about twenty minutes.

Our hearts were immediately melted as she's absolutely bloody adorable.

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More importantly than her taking to us, she seemed to get along well with Tesla, and wasn't afraid to tell him off when he was being a butt.  He doesn't really know how to play with other dogs as he's just never really had the chance...so we're hoping she can help there.  She's also very, very affectionate, whereas he really isn't interested in fuss.  He wants to be *near* to people, but has little interest in actually touching them...whereas if you stand still for five seconds around her she starts nosing at your hand for pets.  So the two hopefully can teach each other different aspects of how to be a dog.

While she looks far more pure husky, she's actually a husky/German Shepherd cross just the same as Tesla.

How could anyone not love this face?

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Likely to be several months before she joins us (obviously assuming future visits and everything go well too), but it felt like the initial introduction to both us and of the two dogs to each other went about as well as it could.  It seems that she's a really good fit for what we're looking for in this household.  I think the rescue charity have been struggling to find a home for her (she's been with them for nearly a year now) purely because she's not a pure husky and they deal primarily with rescued sled dogs, so pure huskies & malamutes are easier for them to find homes for.

 

Hasn't left me much day to play with cars though...but I did have a dig through the box of random "air tool stuff" I picked up a few weeks back.  Found three things which may well each be useful for different stages of the paint stripping process. 

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Not honestly sure how to tell if the gun is a spray gun or soda/sand blaster.  Answers on a post card?

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It's a paraffin/oil/solvent gun for rustproofing or degreasing and cleaning, can also be used as an air lance if no liquid in the container. No idea if it's any use for applying paint stripper though, but I dare say some one on here has used one for that.

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Yeah, someone elsewhere has identified it for me.  Though we've a load of wooden fences so a rapid way of applying preservative to them will be very welcome!

...Oh...not to mention several cars which need to be rust proofed too.  Forgot those!

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Had a bit of an experiment with the paraffin gun this afternoon.  I still had some old underbody wax floating around, so I let it down a bit to a more spray friendly consistency then had a mess around with it.

Can't see me ever messing around with aerosol cans for this sort of job again.  The spray is far finer and just generally well behaved.

Didn't do a huge amount, just gave the front wheel arches and engine bay a blow over.  It's a bit hard to see as it's clear wax that's gone on over the black stuff already there.

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The top dust cover on the shock absorber has fallen off again.  I'll need to get inventive with a cable tie to make it stay in place I think as it's obviously not going to behave.

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Hopefully this should keep the rust in the bulkhead under the windscreen from getting worse too quickly until it can be cut out and replaced.

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Worked into all the little gaps under the struts and the cavities thoroughly misted.  Bonnet really needs replacing in the long term, but hopefully this should help it remain stable for a bit longer.

 

The Invacar has had a little more sanding work.  Have been going very gently with the P120 discs on the sander at low speed over the front of the car.  Unlike the rear this has no coloured gel coat... it's been painted from the factory.  It's also far thinner, so I'm aiming to just remove the loose areas here then I'll see how things look with some high build primer on there.

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While it looks horrible, this is actually smooth to the touch.

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Bonnet is still a mess, but is far closer to flat than it was!

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Then forgot to dust myself off before sitting in the driver's seat.

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Just a bit of dust about...

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Going to give one of those cheap soda blasters a shot for the rear body and roof...if it works it works...if not it's no huge loss and I'll just need to persevere...

 

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6 hours ago, Zelandeth said:

The Invacar has had a little more sanding work.  Have been going very gently with the P120 discs on the sander at low speed over the front of the car.  Unlike the rear this has no coloured gel coat...

interesting, one of half of TPA is from an Invacar the other half of TPA is from an AC? or are the 2 body sections original but just moulded differently for some reason?

(speaking of I wonder if the engine in TWC matches the engine number on TPAs Chassis plate :))

I never quite got to the bottom of if it was AC or Invacar on what was painted and what was moulded blue etc

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It's a bit hard to tell... entirely possible one or both of the body mouldings have been replaced during the life of the vehicle.  The front may well have a gel coat, if so it's an almost microscopically thin one and is flaking off the substrate like loose paint in places.

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Here's a question for you lot.

Heater and windscreen demister switch will be getting fitted in the not too distant future.  It's of a type which is visually identical to those already on the dash so should look like it's meant to be there.

The question is where to put it.

There are three options as I see it:

[] Immediately to the right of the speedometer.

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[] To the far right over by the no passengers sign.

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[] To the far left, between the handbrake and door.

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I'm currently leaning towards the first option...seems most in keeping with the original switchgear.  Should still leave me room to add the brake fluid warning lamp when the hardware for it is fitted.

 

Any votes for other locations? 

May well fit this to my spare dash as I want to take the dash out to sort a couple of wiring bodges I've seen under there.  Will make it a lot easier though as being off the car will vastly improve access.

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Zip by way of stuff actually done today as I've spent the whole day running around in circles getting the house back in order (and wasting two hours stuck in traffic on the M25).  As the van has a busy few days coming up it made sense to top up the fuel...

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(24.0mpg for that tank, so average is staying pretty solidly in the mid 20s mpg, tending toward high 20s if out on a decent run - I managed 32mpg once which was frankly staggered by for such a huge brick of a van with an engine from the 1970s).

I always feel better when heading out of my local area if I'm starting out with a full tank, even if I know that I'd have comfortably made it with well over a hundred miles to spare on what was already in there (this is a 75 litre tank)...force of habit I guess.

In the interests of saving some weight I figured it was time to start actually shifting some of the crap which has been rattling around in the boxes of stuff I picked up out of the van.  Box of tools no 1 contained:

[] Herma Combination Whitworth/AF/Metric socket set.

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[] Nice little Wanner grease gun.  This will no doubt still be going decades after the cheap one already in the garage has turned to dust.

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[] Proper set of De-Walt branded impact sockets.  Useful given I bought an impact wrench a few weeks ago.

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Also dragged in the second Core2 Duo based HP Server (complete with new, never opened monitor and keyboard), and what must be another couple of gallons of LHM.  If anyone on here needs any LHM please just ask...I've about four lifetimes worth here now!

Was just about to close the garage up when this arrived in the most comically oversized box I've seen in a while.  I should have taken a photo of it, the thing was nearly the size of the wheelie bin.

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Hopefully will have some soda blasting media arriving in the next day or two so will be able to give it a test run then.  Just didn't seem worth not giving this kit a shot at less than £40 delivered.  If it works, aside from saving me a lot of grief on the Invacar it will be an all round useful thing to have.  Bit like having a compressor...I doubt it's a tool I'll really appreciate until I've got used to having it around.

Certainly can't see me voluntarily switching back to a garage without air on tap...and I've not even got an air powered rattle gun or anything yet!  Do need a proper tyre inflator though.  The one I've got works just fine...but the sort of thing you used to see in garage forecourts just seems more "correct" somehow.

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Second visit to the foster home of (hopefully) our second dog this morning.

Time to shamelessly spam my thread with fluffy things...

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Nice to see that she was pretty happy in less than five minutes today.  Definitely remembered us it seemed like.

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This is probably the silliest photo of the day.

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We're heading back over on Tuesday to see how things go when out on a walk with her, basically so that the foster keeper can be sure we're able to deal with her if/when she gets panicked while out and about.  They've said based on what they've seen of us and how she's taken to us though that so long as that goes well that there should be no reason we couldn't adopt her.

I took a few dozen photos as usual, but won't spam this thread with any more for now!

Currently sitting sitting in the waiting room at the hospital for a routine appointment... they're running roughly 90 minutes late.  I was due to be seen at 1500.  Blarg... let's see how long this takes!

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17 hours ago, Zelandeth said:

Second visit to the foster home of (hopefully) our second dog this morning.

Time to shamelessly spam my thread with fluffy things...

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Nice to see that she was pretty happy in less than five minutes today.  Definitely remembered us it seemed like.

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This is probably the silliest photo of the day.

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We're heading back over on Tuesday to see how things go when out on a walk with her, basically so that the foster keeper can be sure we're able to deal with her if/when she gets panicked while out and about.  They've said based on what they've seen of us and how she's taken to us though that so long as that goes well that there should be no reason we couldn't adopt her.

I took a few dozen photos as usual, but won't spam this thread with any more for now!

Currently sitting sitting in the waiting room at the hospital for a routine appointment... they're running roughly 90 minutes late.  I was due to be seen at 1500.  Blarg... let's see how long this takes!

What a lovely dog, hope all goes well with her, she seems to have taken well to you guys. 

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    • By Dick Longbridge
      As with many of the members on here, I tend to read and comment a lot, but haven’t done much in the way of my own shite related posting. The onslaught of miserable teenage goat bummers (©Bollox2019) has encouraged me to share a little more, rather than look at the screen and shake my head. As my fiancée once told me, Dick is for sharing. Or something.
       
      Updates are likely to be sporadic, and not necessarily ‘car project work’ per se. Sometimes it may just be the odd photo.
      Anyway, now the disclaimer is out the way, and without further ado, I’ll start with this.
       
      I bought my Lambretta just over ten years ago. I’ve had a few over the years, and even dabbled with the dark side, or as they are sometimes known, Vespa.
       
      Collection of this scooter involved a fucked Transit, and a day trip to Stoke from sunny Cornwall. Breathing in diesel exhaust fumes which permeated the van through the rusty gaps under the back doors was becoming tiresome by the twelfth hour of driving. We managed it though, and the scooter was well worth the journey. It’s an Italian 1967 SX150, with a 186 Imola kit, plus various other trick bits. It was originally Verde Mela - a rare Innocenti colour - which is basically apple green. Unfortunately the previous owner stripped every last trace of it from the frame, and repainted it in a Peugeot metallic. Not something I could ever bring myself to do, but it looks good all the same.
       
      I had plenty of fun with the scooter, and even made it to the Isle of Wight rally on it (I’ve done this a few times on previous scooters). However, as with many of us, life and house got in the way, and it’s sat in the garage under a cover for way too long.
       
      I hadn’t fired it up for well over 12 months, so decided to drag the old dear out into the sunshine, fire her up, and give her a blast around the estate. I did a quick video of getting the scooter started - no sound because time lapse - startup was a bitch as the fuel was really stale, half evaporated and leaving the oil/ratio mix completely oil heavy. You can make out when it eventually fires up in the video - wait for the smoke around the back end!
       
      I’ll end by adding the startup video. I’ve got a load more photos somewhere on the external HDD, including some of my previous Lambrettas. I'll have to dig them out when I get chance.
       
      TTFN.
       
    • By richardthestag
      Been a busy 6 months on my old Range Rover that I own 50/50 with Fathathastag
       
      Bit of background first..
       
      We bought it March 2015 just as genuine early Range Rovers were starting to get noticed. Alas not early enough that we could have got it for a couple of hundred quid. 
       
      The car had been owned for decades by a Land Rover enthusiast and this particular car retained a lot of features unique to pre 1973 Range Rovers. Sadly he died a few years back and the car was left outside the front of his house. 
       
      I spotted it on eBay and arranged with the owners widow to view. There were no bids and my offer was good enough to take the auction off.
       
      The engine had been part way through a top end strip down when work stopped, I had no idea even if the car would move. But rented a trailer and relocated it from Watford to North Devon where fathathastag has a barn suitable for storage.
       

       

       
      The project is on the right, we towed it into the field and pushed it into the barn

       
      In May 2015 I got to do an assessment of the car. body wise most outer panels were ok, the inner wings looked ok, it clearly needed some work but was unsure how much at this point. main objective was to see if the engine was a runner.
       

       

       

       

       
      Found that the gearbox and axles were original to the car, but the engine was from an earlyish SD1
       
      while the seat covers are not original some of the plastic kitkat seat coverings are underneath, the rear seat especially
       

       

       

       

       
      The head has some nasty corrosion very near the fire ring seal, 
       

       
      When I refitted the head one of the bolts tore the thread out. bastard but not entirely uncommon with the alloy blocked RV8
       

       
       
       
       
       
    • By BorniteIdentity
      This week, for the first time ever, I felt old. I have sciatica which swaps from one side to the other, arthritis in one hand and what I think is the beginnings of IBS. On top of that it took me 2 weeks to remember a registration number that once would take me 2 seconds, and I forgot my parent's wedding anniversary.

      I'm only 32.

      Shit. No I'm not. I'm 33. I forgot that too. (Genuinely)

      So, it's about time I committed some of my tales to paper. Well, a shonky server... but that's the best you can do in 2016.

      First up, a list of the cars I've owned (as best as I can remember) in chronological order.

      Main Cars
      1985 VW Polo Formel E. C158 TRT. This was given to me even before I passed my test.

      1991 Rover Metro S. J801 TAC. Bought about 3 months after I passed my test as I was convinced the Polo was about to shit its gearbox.

      1987 Volvo 360 GLT. D781 ___ Managed three months in a Metro before the small car and smaller petrol tank became a bore.

      Ford Mondeo and Honda Civic Coupe by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1999 Ford Mondeo Zetec. V384 DBJ. Still the most I've ever spent on a car. It was 3 years old and cost, from memory, about £8,000. Just think of the Rover R8s you could buy with that now!

      1987 Volkswagen Golf GTI 8v by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1987 Volkswagen Golf GTI D79 CVV. I very nearly bought a MK1 Golf 1.1 but was persuaded, by my father amusingly, to buy this one from a different friend. From memory I gave about £500 for it, and sold it to some racers later that year for about £300. Amusingly, 16 year later I'd sell the Hartge wheels that came with the car for £530.

      1999 Toyota Avensis CDX by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1999 Toyota Avensis CDX. V781 GDP. By far the best car I've ever had. Bought in 2002 for £5300, it had previously been a company car at British Telecom. I ran it from 62,000 to 174,000 before it became surplus to requirements. A German chap bought it on ebay for about £500 and drove over to collect it. Hero.

      2001 Ford Mondeo Zetec by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      2001 Ford Mondeo Zetec. Y821 EEB. I should have loved this car. I gave £500 for it in 2008 which was stupidly cheap by anybody's standards. It needed 4 tyres (which actually was nice to pick good ones for once) and a coil spring. Sadly, it was just bill after bill after bill. I sold it and promised to never own another Ford. I nearly succeeded.

      1998 Nissan Almera by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1998 Nissan Almera GX Auto. S58 NLO. My late Grandfather's car and, upon reflection, my first proper attempt at bangernomics. I bought it for £500 in 2008 from the estate and ran it for well over a year and 30,000 miles. It was also my first automatic which, whilst a bit dumb, did lock up into overdrive and give a good 36 mpg no matter how it was driven.

      2004 Ford Fiesta 1.25 LX and 2006 Ford Focus 2.0 Ghia by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      2004 Ford Fiesta Zetec. AG53 BWL. My wife's car which I ran for a couple of years when I bought her a Focus as a wedding gift.

      2003 Rover 75 by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      2003 Rover 75 Club SE. AX53 BFA. This is where my career as a serial car buyer really began. Ignoring all of the warning signs I decided to press a K Series into a daily 100 mile commute, which it did with aplomb. This wasn't actually the car I set out to buy, the one I'd agreed to buy OVERHEATED ON THE FORECOURT whilst I was doing the paperwork. Consequently I couldn't leave fast enough and bought a different car later that day.

      2004 Toyota Avensis T30-X by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      2004 Toyota Avensis T3-X. KT53 DWZ. Sensible head back on, I decided to get back into something I trusted when my 3rd son was born. This was a lovely car, but not without its problems. The VVTi oil burning issues are well documented and do frequently occur. Ironically, this was less reliable than the Rover it replaced! Despite fearing the worst and 3 months off the road, the new owner has just MOTd it.

      1999 Toyota Avensis SR by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1999 Toyota Avensis SR. V263 GDP. Back into bangernomics territory again. The last MK1 Avensis I had was the best car I'd ever had, so I hoped to replicate it with another T22 Avensis. This one came up for sale in my favourite (and rare) colour with a numberplate sequential to my previous car - so it was meant to be. I still have this now, and tomorrow it will tick around to 185,000 miles having been bought by me at 100,500.

      Side Bitches

      1974 Morris Mini 1000 by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1974 Morris Mini 1000. GEL 517N. Well, I always wanted one - and was young, free, single and well off at the time (2003). A memorable trip to buy it when I called my new girlfriend by my ex girlfriend's name 20 miles into a 200 mile weekend away. She's never forgiven or forgotten but we're still friends. Oh - and married.

      1977 Ford Capri II GL by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1977 Ford Capri II 1600 GL. SMY 675R. I can't remember why I bought this, other than I thought it'd be amusing. It was bought from Norwich for £350 and was perfectly well behaved for the 8 months that I had it (other than a flasher unit expiring). I remember being shocked just how much the windscreen would ice up inside, and duly sold it in November to a guy who was going to drive it daily! It's still alive and now, apparently, black! (Update - it's now silver!!!)

      1989 Volvo 340 DL by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1989 Volvo 340 DL. G67 AVN. I bought this for £80. Unbelievable. It was utterly bloody perfect. I wanted to do a banger rally which is why the guy gave it to me so cheap. I'm still yet to do that rally, but no longer have the car. I sold it for about £300 to a family who were clearly down on their luck who, I hope, still have the car.

      1996 Toyota Granvia by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1996 Toyota Granvia. N775 JEV. My wife and I decided to increase our numbers further and, with our 4th son on the way, larger transport was required. We quickly realised you can either have 4 children and no apparel, or apparel and no children. After trying a very tired Mercedes Viano, the Granvia was found for 1/4 of the price and it's still here 2 years later. I can safely say that we'll never sell it - it really is another member of the family.

      1993 Mercedes 190e by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1993 Mercedes 190e. L795 COJ. I've admired these cars since I was a child. In fact, one of the very few toy cars I still have from my childhood is a Mercedes 190e. Regular readers of "Memoirs from the Hard Shoulder" will know what a PITA this car has been since day 1, but I get the feeling it's a keeper. We'll see!

      1983 Ford Sierra Base 1.6 by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1983 Ford Sierra Base. GVG 510Y. Not explicitly my car, but it should be documented here for reference. Oh - and the V5 is in my name. The story is online for all to read as to how five of us acquired what is believed to be the only remaining Ford Sierra Base. Make a brew and read it, it's a fantastic story.

      1982 Ford Sierra L by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1982 Ford Sierra L. LCR 503Y. I accidentally won this on ebay for £520. Upon reflection, I shouldn't have sold it - but short stop of saying I regret it. I could never get truly comfortable driving it and, in fairness, I could scratch my Sierra itch with the base if I wanted. Sold it at a stupid profit of £1250. It is believed to be the oldest remaining Ford Sierra in the UK.

      1979 Volvo 343 DL by Bornite Identity, on Flickr
      1979 Volvo 343 DL. DBY 466T As you'll see above, I'd had a 360GLT as a younger lad and fancied one of these earlier cars. The variomatic is, frankly, terrible but amusing. This car has just 8000 miles on the clock and inside was absolutely timewarp. Sadly, the huge bill for the Mercedes 190e cylinder head rebuild meant I had to sell this car shortly after acquiring it. Since then I've had a bit of money luck, and now realise I didn't need to sell it after all. Typical.

      I think that's it. My arthritis is playing up even more now. I've left out a few cars that were actually my wife's, but if I find pictures will add them in at a later date. I'll run this as an ongoing thread on cars and what's happening.

      Current SitRep:

      Purple Avensis: Just about to click over 185,000. Minor drama this week when an HT lead split but otherwise utterly fantastic, fantastically boring and boringly reliable.

      Granvia: Just done 1000 miles in a month around Norfolk, 6 up with suitcases. 31mpg achieved on the way up which is good for an old tub with a 3.0 Turbo Diesel on board. ODO displaying 175,000 which is a mix of miles and kilometers. Say 130,000 miles for argument's sake.

      Mercedes: Being a PITA. It's had the top end completely rebuilt after the chain came off. Now needs welding to pass another MOT and the gearbox bearings are on strike. It's about to go into the garage for winter until I can stomach it again. 151,000 miles on the clock.

      Sierra bASE: Still on sabbatical with AngryDicky who only took it bloody camping in cornwall! Legend.
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