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For Chod & Ulster: WED 29 MAY DAMPNESS!!

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12 hours ago, The_Equalizer said:

I was about to say I like the wheels. I guess what I should say is I like the front wheels what with the rears looking like they are a totally different style.

Only the finest quality motors at Ballyclare... you know that!

(Mind you, we're assuming that the nearside and offside wheels also match...)

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On the road today for a meeting, so took the opportunity to swing past Ballyclare on the way back... (obviously, I'm still kicking myself for missing the pogweaseled Renault Fuego last week)

A strangely familiar rump greeted me...


Well well well, if it isn't @R9UKE 's septic-plated  Lexus ES300 in all its glory...


Three litres of far-eastern V6 goodness, brought to you via Maryland and rural Co. Fermanagh. Mmmm. Velour interior was very clean and very lovely.

Arches slightly more in need of some tidying, but a lovely motor nonetheless... if I remember, it's the non-functioning dash which is causing the bother on this one (TADTS).


Still, it's in significantly better nick than its much newer neighbour...



Ew. Crusty. Doubtless some Rathcoole Cowboy will be delighted with this later on.


So what else caught my eye?




Yep, it's a V6 Sport. Slightly bleary of eye, but reasonably clean overall. Not with the glorious red leather interior, sadly.


You can always tell when a Jaguar's had a genuinely careful owner, because they collect all the trim bits that fall off and keep them all together in a little heap. Bless.

Otherwise, a bit samey today - plenty of shagged Audis, crispy Accords and low-cost-big-liability Land Rover products.


Fiat Croma is an unusual sight. This one boasted a whole two weeks' MOT left, which inspires CONFIDENCE.



Early 2000s Poxhalls, Doom-Diamonds and Pewjoes. Meh.

Oh, hello.


Not so many booted Polos about these days (ok, so it's a Spaniard wearing a German mask).

Shiteworthiness points boosted significantly for ROI plates but no accompanying paperwork, for simply hours of fun dealing with endless DVLA forms and on-hold music. Where else could you possibly buy so much bureaucratic heartache for so little? Nowhere, that's where.

Kinesthesic parking sensors in evidence here, as with much of Ballyclare's fine wares.


What was I saying again about low cost, big liability?





Over at the far side of the yard is what appears to be an embryonic Rotten Row, comprising cars that have been through the ring but, for one reason or another, neither their new owner or the previous keeper wants them enough to arrange transport.

Not a great advert for the once-mighty SAAB, is it?


The two closest, SEZ and MEZ, were sitting in a row across the yard back in March, but with no ring docket visible on the screen. With this sidelining, their future maybe isn't looking rosy. Same for the ropey-looking big Audi, and... ooh.


I really hope someone takes pity on this reasonable-looking K10 Micra; scarce wee things locally now.

Just as I was leaving (duty calls), an oul fella rolled into the yard in this...


Chock-full o'wob, and I'm not sure if he was there to buy or sell - but what a cracking heap. This place never disappoints.


Ideally, I'd like to pop back up later tonight and see to what dizzy heights these assorted sheds ascend, but I suspect I've enough to be doing later on, sadly.

But! We really must get another proper social event in the calendar for the Nordie bunch...

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Impressive lot of mangled rot boxes in true Ballyclare style. I was very tempted to pop up on Wednesday too, but I had your [stoney faced] MoT tester and the Jag impressively failed its MoT on front brakes (fair enough), broken front spring (no idea how that happened) and the World's smallest rust hole. I will not doubt go on about this at another point, but it would be jolly good for another NI catch up.

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Daah… sorry to hear about the Jag - hopefully those won't be dreadfully difficult bits to fix (springs are a DIY pain best avoided, I'd imagine).
How are we all fixed for next Wednesday, say?
Next Wednesday may actually work for me

Sent from my TA-1012 using Tapatalk

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22 hours ago, Datsuncog said:

Daah… sorry to hear about the Jag - hopefully those won't be dreadfully difficult bits to fix (springs are a DIY pain best avoided, I'd imagine).

How are we all fixed for next Wednesday, say?

Next Wednesday sounds great provided I have not forgotten I am doing something (this often happens). I am sure my missus will set me straight.

I have done springs on the my previous Merc, but these look in a different league and I will probably bottle it. I have been buying calipers and the like. All in it is going to be goodbye £1K - ouch!

Would be good to see you lot. Where's Faker?


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13 minutes ago, Datsuncog said:

So then... anyone fancying a turn up to Ballyclare later on tonight?


I'm working ( as per bloody usual ) so I will have to tag along some other time folks

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Daaah, the curse of shift work, hey... wouldn't wanna go back to it myself.

But never worry, I don't think they're gonna run out of shite anytime soon up there - so there will be a next time...

...and I'll be sure to snap anything interesting and post it up here for your viewing pleasure. 😉

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Probably a bit overdue, but I'd feel somehow derelict in my duties if I failed to make a note of some description regarding last Wednesday evening...

So. Do we have a theme?

Seems about right. Hit it.




The auction was surprisingly packed, given the deeply inclement weather. Presumably those who arrived early couldn't believe how super-minty tonight's entries all looked, and hung around... wonder if they looked quite as showroom fresh once they dried out and the lacquer peel and bleached-grey trim reappeared... never buy a car in the rain, they say?

Tonight, in my desperate efforts to avoid detection by the auction regulars, I'd gone for this season's popular 'elderly farmer' look, modelling a scuffed off-brand waxed jacket, Tuffa yard boots and tweed cap (all soon sodden). 

My carefully assembled catwalk-fresh look was usurped, however, by another chap in a cloth duncher who looked a bit like Frank Zappa's brother (just visible to the right of the above pic), with long grey hair and beard. Ah well.

So, what riches were to be found on the premises?


This 2003 Rover 45 was Lot #1, it transpired. Didn't see it go through, and doubt it realised much - even though it looked a tidy enough old bus with only a few giffer-dings.



On down the row, this facelifted Mégane I cabrio had a ding to the front o/s wing and bumper, but otherwise appeared extraordinarily clean.


The additional info sheet stuck in the window, presumably by the vendor themselves rather than the auction, highlighted its many good points. Front discs and calipers did indeed appear to be brand new items.



Gangsta daddy-wagon: a Chrysler Voyager tricked out with Halfords' finest. Bangin'.



These P12 Primeras seem to always struggle to even crack the £200 barrier with a full MOT - are they really that dreadful? I kinda liked them when they were current, especially the estate version, although I understand UK and European sales were always disappointing, leading to its axing in 2006.

Could Renault have cut its losses in 2002 by rebranding a jazzed-up version of this as the new Laguna, rather than stubbornly persisting with their marque-slayingly awful heap of dung? It may not have been a marvel, but at least this one might have been less likely to blow its fuel pump and throw electrical faults up every ten minutes. The front end always did strike me as reminiscent of the Laguna I/ R16...



More Japanese grey porridge in the form of the final incarnation of the Nissan Terrano, in SWB format. On sale from 1993 to 2006, until it was indirectly replaced by the Qashquai, these were unusually long-lived beasts and still find a ready market amongst the horsey set, I'm told. The otherwise identical Ford Maverick is a rarer sight now.



Repaired, you say? Where?



Southern plated Polo saloon from a few weeks ago still seeking a home (or has already been brought back by its new owner - either is plausible). The Fiat Croma (modern, not 80s) was still where it'd been parked a fortnight previously, though with no card on the screen. Hmm.



I do quite like the 106/Saxo... I have a thing for ultra-basic little hatchbacks, and this one looked not too bad...


I should probably bite the bullet and get one for a while, before these stop being bangers and start changing hands for silly money, the way AXs seem to be going...


Moving inside, out of the rain then... the ringside area was filled with a heaving mass of damp people, enjoying* the fine cuisine while choking on the copious fumes from a particularly nasty Audi A4.

Beside the ring there was...




Aha. Well well, if it wasn't SEZ and MEZ, the Fancy-Pants Vectra floppytops, who have been hanging round the yard since at least March, and which I'd snapped a fortnight earlier as part of the expanding row of gently distressed SAABs:


Here they were now, clearly in pride of place, just in time to provide some top-down summer fun* for some lucky* punters.

Why, MEZ even had the top down, all ready to go.

A snide thought flickered into my mind. I instantly dismissed it.

Then I read the auction card.


No, I was entirely correct.


The_Equalizer had joined me by this stage, and to be honest we spent much of the auction talking about bathroom fittings rather than paying attention to the cars going through the ring.

By cracky, getting old is a funny thing.

In fairness,not many of the cars could be described as either interestingly old or hilariously decrepit, and so it was hard to get overly enthusiastic... I also calculated that it wasn't really worth risking my kneecaps for a £500 Scenic or a £900 A4.



The little Mégane cabrio appeared, but bidding topped out at £300 - and it was, apparently, nowhere near reserve.

With the usual cavalcade of scruffy Focusususes, dinged Zafiras and rolling deathtrap Audis, we nipped back outside to make eyes at the Renner, at which stage The_Equalizer got chatting with another happy Mégane cabrio pilot and I had to dash off, in order to procure the world's most expensive cat litter, which is only sold at Pets at Home (and, presumably, outlets such as Chanel and Gucci).

The rain had eased off a little anyway, and there were rainbows everywhere...


Tarmac rainbows count, right?


I'd also like to find out what the craic is with this, shunted into the corner. K10s aren't common at all these days...

A brisk 20-minute dash over the hills to Abbeycentre netted me my £50 cat litter (yeah, I know) - and also revealed that the Forester's clutch is very much on its way out. Much judder, much slippy-slippy.

What do we say?


Ah now.


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16 hours ago, Amishtat said:

Another entertaining write up there.. But wait a minute. FIFTY POUNDS FOR FUCKING CAT LITTER? 

I know, right?! I've bought at least three cars for less than that...


Some sort of super-mega low-dust anti-static maximum-absorption low-odour paraben-free dolphin-friendly shiz or other. It's made in Germany. Precision engineering for feline turds.

I bought two bags of the stuff (£26.99 a bag) so I could use a '£3 off when you spend over £40' voucher. £51 for 26kg.

It does last a lot longer than the cheapo stuff, though it still ends up tracked up the fucking hall every morning. But at least Cat is not shitting in our (or anyone else's) garden.

Hopefully I won't need to buy another bag this year... hopefully.

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