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davehedgehog31

Hedgehog Motors - Dueling 205s

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405s are actually really good cars. I've liked both the early TD and 2.0 auto I've had so far....both had great seats and a nice driving feel, a bit more enthralling than BXs and Xantias in my opinion.

Agreed, the steering feel is great. I actually think the white one feels a bit sharper without the heft of the XUD over the front wheels.

 

My red one is a really nice car, in good nick, a nice trim level and the right engine. The white one is a bit crusty but seems fundamentally solid and it was also £150. The seats are spectacular.

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405's are great cars. I had one for a short while (GTX TD Estate), which unfortunately let me down at the wrong time - I was doing a 120 mile daily commute and the neglect it had suffered from previous owners led to me spending most weekends underneath fixing something. It eventually had to go and was replaced with my trusty K10 Micra. When it worked though it was a lovely waft mobile, the steering wasn't overly assisted, the brakes had the right amount of feel and stopping power without being stupidly effective (like all the modern toss) so I could drive it smoothly in a selection of unsuitable footwear! The long travel suspension and deep tyres meant it was quiet and smooth on the motorway, it wasn't fast but it didnt matter. 

A friend has a 405 Executive estate, also TD, and that thing is simply sublime. He's put over 40K on it and it never misses a beat, just keeps going and going. 

The XUD is an excellent engine, it couldn't be simpler and yet is refined enough to be useable and will always return a decent MPG - provided they get regular oil changes and you keep an eye on the coolant system, they go on for ever. A 405 that visits the local garage every year has 400k on it and the guy has had it from new! 

 

Any car post ~ 1998 is too heavy, too complicated and no more reliable. Nothing has really got better, just more safety and more emission controls and all the shite that goes with it. That and I despise anything that I has been deliberately designed to stop me fiddling with it! 

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So I've been absent from here for a bit owing to some personal issues. With that dealt with I have now re-found my shite mojo and will be contributing regularly again. 

 

The £150 pug's MOT expired at the start of January and it had been languishing in the lockup. The most obvious issue requiring attention was the non functioning handbrake. Up on stands and a quick gander revealed a snapped handbrake cable. The handbrake cable is in three parts, one from the lever and one to each wheel through a compensating bracket thingymajig. 

 

I bought the two required cables and set to replacing them. Rear lifted and the red fleet support vehicle 405 on hand with tools.

 

white1.jpg

 

As you can imagine, access was claustrophobic with the rear up on axle stands. I got the old cables out fairly easily. At this point Mr 320T turned up to collect vegetal and lend a hand. It was much needed as routing the cable up through the floor was an absolute bastard with four hands, nevermind two. With the hard bit done, I connected everything up, adjusted the drivers side drum brake and re-assembled. 

 

white3.jpg

 

With it's arse still in the air all seemed fine, handbrake locked both wheels. 

 

A quick check round revealed no other obvious MOT nasties, save for a non functioning indicator. Obviously, when I removed the lens the plastic holding it to the wing disintegrated. A quality* repair with indicator lens repair tape and super glue was implemented. Good as new*. 

 

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So it went in for it's test and promptly failed on the handbrake. Home, jacked up again and sure enough, the wheel I hadn't changed the cable for had no resistance at all, not sure if the cable had stretched or something. Either way, I changed the cable in question and with assistance from Brothers Touring, we got everything adjusted up properly. 

 

In for it's retest this morning.... pass!

 

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Now lowering the tone of the work car park;

 

white8.jpg

 

Quite satisfying, as it was probably destined for the scrappy but seems a fundamentally good car. It rides superbly, much better than the red one in fact. I think the red one may need new dampers. Will now be pressed into service. 

 

The battery seems royally fucked but is only a year and a half old. Got the receipt so going back to halfords to chance my arm.

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Fascinating Mr. Hedgehog, the 405 was indeed one of the best cars ever. Had mine from new, June 1994, did 400K in it, and parted company with it in 2004, part ex`d against a Synergie. Serviced every 6K miles without fail, it got through 7 cam belts, 3 radiators, 1 brake compensator, a few steering and suspension parts, numerous tyres, and not a lot else. Never had any problem with the engine - it was still returning 45 to 55 a gallon when it went. I seem to remember it needing a new starter and alternator now I think about it. My only regret was that it was a saloon and not an estate.  I can`t remember the last time I saw one - they just disappeared of the face of the earth one day.     

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Do any 1.4 405s still exist? I'd love* to try one of them.

Good to see you back Dave.

 

Cheers dude. 

 

I've never been in one, it must be glacially slow. 

 

Fascinating Mr. Hedgehog, the 405 was indeed one of the best cars ever. Had mine from new, June 1994, did 400K in it, and parted company with it in 2004, part ex`d against a Synergie. Serviced every 6K miles without fail, it got through 7 cam belts, 3 radiators, 1 brake compensator, a few steering and suspension parts, numerous tyres, and not a lot else. Never had any problem with the engine - it was still returning 45 to 55 a gallon when it went. I seem to remember it needing a new starter and alternator now I think about it. My only regret was that it was a saloon and not an estate.  I can`t remember the last time I saw one - they just disappeared of the face of the earth one day.     

 

Thats a good innings! 

 

I've only seen two since I got mine and both have been estates. I see one of the two reasonably regularly on the way to work, I give the old buy who drives it a knowing wave each time.

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I've not bought a car this year, in fact I've actually sold one. That needs to change. 

 

I unsuccessfully bid on something on eBay, never met the reserve but after discussion with the seller I've agreed to buy it. It has no MOT and hasn't had for some years. This can only go well. 

 

Thankfully there is not* one instance in history of one of these cars ever overheating or rusting, so I should be fine. 

 

I'll be collecting tomorrow, this will mean five cars at the Inn, something will have to give. 

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I'll be collecting tomorrow, this will mean five cars at the Inn, something will have to give. 

 

I'd be interested in your astra if you needed to sell something. Now I no longer have a 1.5 mile commute to work I need something that does MPG's as the CRV is eating me out of house and home. Performance not required as my new commute consists in sitting in a traffic jam on the M74!

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I'd be interested in your astra if you needed to sell something. Now I no longer have a 1.5 mile commute to work I need something that does MPG's as the CRV is eating me out of house and home. Performance not required as my new commute consists in sitting in a traffic jam on the M74!

Good to know dude, it's the most sensible member of the fleet but will definitely keep that in mind.

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That would be good actually, I've thought about towing my dad's trailer a couple of times.

 

Kullekshun capers about to get underway. A 45 minuteish drive from Balloch to Blantyre where I will abandon the Astra for the evening and return on the iron horse tomorrow.

 

MOT booked for tomorrow, providing the fucker makes it up the road.

 

I've still not seen the steed, but providing it will drive and is not rotten I'll be crossing the man's palm with 200 bar. Driving home in a car with a parchant for overheating which hasn't had MOT for the last five years at the height of rush hour may be ill advised, so I may retire to a fast food outlet and wait for it to blow over.

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So what does two hundred quid buy you? A fetching two seater, mid engined sports car with no MOT.

 

Made it to a fuel stop. Have no interior backlights or indicators, are run off the same fuse, unfortunately changing the fuse has not resolved matters, waiting for the traffic to die down before taking it back up the road to the MOT station.

 

Initial impressions other than that are good, although it's cold, dark and wet so I've not really dug into it. fbab71eae8ce7d11e0a4f8d60c038f32.jpg07c2956a083b318de669fba05e96d605.jpga3c426ed2217052f172e0b9a8c2e8fd6.jpg

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Had a 2004 TF in 2007, only time Ive had a newish car. In fact until last August it was still the newest car I'd owned! Really liked driving it but didn't have the top down too often, should have got a hard top for it. Technically it was my wife's car, she'd wanted one for years but it didn't last long, she was pregnant within 6 months of buying so it was replaced by a ZS!

 

Good luck with it, definitely looks good in the dark!

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A full recap then. 

 

Having not bought a car since early December, I had an itch to scratch. I had a frustrating string of failed eBay bids and unanswered Gumtree messages. 

 

I spotted a red 1999 MGF VVC in Blantyre with bidding only around the £160 mark. It had no MOT and hadn't done for five years or so and had been sat around a long time. It looked to be added to the list of failed bids, I missed the reserve. I messaged the chap and asked what he wanted for it, £200 he said. Sold.

 

The car was relatively nearby in Blantyre (Blantur for the locals), I nipped in on the way home from work to get a look. The guy selling it was at his work in a Porsche specialist, there was a rather lovely 944 in.

 

At £200 my investigations comprised of checking there was actually metal formed into sills and that the thing started, due diligence completed I handed over £200 and set off to find motor spirit. 

 

It arrived no bother. Two most obvious issues were the complete lack of interior backlighting and no indicators. Both are run off the one fuse, I checked this and it was fine, oddly once I reseated it the indicators started working but no interior backlighting. Temperature gauge also shagged, which is ideal* on a long dormant Kettle Series. 

 

I got it up the road without issue and stashed away in the garage. I noticed all four tyres have loads of tread and the front two are Toyo Proxes.

 

Some rusty scabs but as far as I can see nothing that a bit of vactan and undersealing won't keep good for the forseeable. Back window fucked. Main issues are around electrical items, aforementioned backlight, various bulbs, electric windows don't work, fan only works on top speed, just little niggles like that. All in all, it seems a decent tub and should be fun through the summer. 

 

Changed the oil with the Pela last night seeing as I had a surplus. 4L out, 4.2L in. 

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Well, the roof works and the cover for it is there, if a little manky.

 

I removed the centre part of the dash, all the plugs for the various switches were unplugged at the back. Someone has been at this and threw the toys out the pram.

 

I managed to break an electric window switch, crack the back window and not fix any of it's issues. A successful evenings tinkering. 26a87538e908c0c51c1bb1e3951a11f1.jpg1f1e2aeed15277187af0a8f1a70fac94.jpg

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