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RichardKs wanderings: C6 trippin' like a week in Annexia, need bug powder dust to even handle a Lexia


RichardK

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Good start. Looking at these pictures I somewhat regret not buying it myself, but then there might be the right time in the future to become a C6 owner again.

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My spidey-sense is tingling.

As I understand it, @GeordieInExile bought new cables for the handbrake, which I even have the receipt for them being fitted.

Then a specialist in Edinburgh tasked with fitting a replacement secondhand handbrake module (after another garage refused to fit it) said "um it doesn't talk to the car, but the one on it is okay and the gears inside are intact we're stumped"

So... why can I hear a handbrake module motor running (including a couple of ratchety-click noises once or twice, but not a decrease in revs suggesting an increase in tension) when I pull the handbrake lever, but the brake is not being applied?

Could it be that a specialist independent garage tasked with an awkward job has been spouting shite to fob off a customer?!

Unlikely, I know. That sort of thing never happens... (and it does seem that it hasn't happened here, thankfully - I'd been thinking they left the new-secondhand module that won't communicate on the car).

But if they did try it, find the module didn't talk to the car, and then refitted the faulty module... that might make sense, except if the gears are intact etc - why isn't it pulling the cable?

But where's the other module if they did that, since they said the one on the car was intact and should work but didn't respond electronically.

(Answer - it's still with the specialist!).

So now the puzzle of which module is on the car is figured out (the old one, with new cables on) the result of it can be solved when I can be arsed to risk my neck under the arse end of a C6 on some sturdy ramps!

The fact that it comes up "Handbrake error" after trying to calibrate suggests it's talking to the car fine, so perhaps this "rebuild the module" malarky can occur.

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1 hour ago, Schaefft said:

Good start. Looking at these pictures I somewhat regret not buying it myself, but then there might be the right time in the future to become a C6 owner again.

One should never regret not buying a C6. Regret is dessert after the main course of purchasing 😂

But I do think it has potential to be a relatively cheap Michelin Star (sorry, Avon) experience.

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It's not the installing, it's the googleing, dead-end links, dodgy fileshare hosts and swarm of misinformation...

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I think the fear of that is why I went with a pre-installed machine off eBay when I had the C5. More expensive for sure but I really didn’t need any more stress than the C5 was already providing. Wish I still had it, there’s a few Citroens that I’ve said ‘non’ to because I sold the Lexia on.

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25 minutes ago, Agila said:

Wow. That's the most sexy door card I've ever seen.

Wait until you see the motion for opening and closing the door pockets. It's pure sex. So smooth.

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29 minutes ago, 83C said:

I think the fear of that is why I went with a pre-installed machine off eBay when I had the C5. More expensive for sure but I really didn’t need any more stress than the C5 was already providing. Wish I still had it, there’s a few Citroens that I’ve said ‘non’ to because I sold the Lexia on.

It really is the nastiest pile of shit to get working I've encountered yet for diagnostic software. If I've one regret it's that working in motoring press didn't give me access to the executive responsible for PSA's attitude to supporting older cars so I could cut off their fingers then tell them they were more than 10 years since production ended so tough shit, we can't get replacements.

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  • RichardK changed the title to RichardKs wanderings: C6 trippin' like a week in Annexia, need bug powder dust to even handle a Lexia

So, third-day thoughts:

Overall, this is a straight old thing. It's aged better than an XM would have in many regards, and I'd say that the advances in bodywork quality and engineering mean it's doing MUCH better than most CXs were at a similar age and price point. My first CX had done 289,000 miles on a 2400 auto carb lump, but it had rust holes (despite being South African import with A/C) and blebs, and many electrical things didn't work despite being literally a wire from component to battery in many cases. I'm a pragmatist where CXs are concerned and don't have strong feelings about S1 vs S2 but you could see the improvement in engineering on S2 door cards, centre console and trims generally from a 'sophistication' level, but the trim rarely held up to the first garage visit when things went wrong. XMs are similar. C6... I'm actually surprised by how much of the interior is still in good functional order after the repairs, number of owners, and depreciation it's enjoyed.

Diagbox is a PIG to set up not because of Diagbox, but because of the associated bits. As @ruffgeezer said when lending me the cable, a virtual machine is the way to do it. In theory Diagbox should have worked out the box on my 32-bit Win 7 Toughbook, but there are patches and things to apply and the VM is ready to roll. I can send a link or WeTransfer the one I have if anyone needs it.

The hiccup was winding Oracle's tech far enough back to run a VM on a 32-bit host. Once I'd got the last 32-bit clean VirtualBox installed with extensions, and wiped the remains of a bad earlier install from the machine, the VM diagbox worked first time and recognised the cable instantly. It pulled up the VIN and talked to the C6.

There are MANY modules on the C6. You can see why diagnostics takes a long time, and why the engine has to be running - a few times it was apparent the test wasn't going to work because the car had put the electronics into ECO mode. I've connected a charger, and I have a 12V power supply that I'll use when running tests and fixing things in future.

Problems revealed by Diagbox:

  • EGR solenoid locked - yes, I know
  • Something about flow
  • Something about the glow plug relays - this one, I think the BMW is suffering as well and it seems to be a common relay module that fails
  • The lane keeping doesn't work because there's a sensor not working - given the impact damage to the front bumper, I have a fair idea of why that is
  • The heater module reports no errors - my cold hands say otherwise
  • It's had a lot of fault clearing on the engine and Diagbox doesn't like that, as it has 50 records it can keep. I'll figure that one out later
  •  BSI reports no issues
  • It can't see the steering wheel buttons. That's apparently a common issue with a connector that comes off inside the column, so I'll explore that
  • The handbrake module is REALLY confused. It seems to think the handbrake is applied, but not exerting any force, but it can't move the motor to release or apply under Diagbox command. However, as soon as I stopped interrogating the module, it ran the motor. I Have Thoughts which will be confirmed when I've got the secondhand module in front of me to take apart
  • The steering angle sensor is showing a fault for the suspension. That might explain the floaty handling

Other things noticed:

  • Ambient lighting is still working on most doors, but it seems to behave oddly - the driver's door and seat switch lights came on and went out, then stayed out. I don't think it's a wiring issue with the door, but I do wonder if the LED for the driver's door light strip has retired.
  • One of the ashtrays in the rear doors has a broken bit of plastic. The fact that this is notable says a lot for how little else I've found wrong on the interior (beyond the vile sticky-soft-coating plastic finish everywhere)
  • The door seals - B pillar, on leading edge of rear door - have started to disintegrate. I think if I can replace those with new or as good as new ones, it'll cure some wind noise
  • The tyre pressure monitoring appears to be working. I'd assumed any sensors would be long gone, given the state of the wheels
  • The non-Michelin tyres seem alright, but when I have the car behaving it'll be getting a full set of Primacys if I think I'll get 10,000 miles out of the car
  • Aluminium doors still corrode. But not very much - less than a Jag XJ.

The worries:

  • It's been maintained in Britain, so it has broken undertrays refitted in the wrong order, missing clips, and crushed jacking points with rust, except very well hidden by plastic sill covers. OF COURSE IT HAS. Because no-one entrusted with a simple task like changing a tyre can be arsed taking the slightest bit of care with anyone else's property...
  • Um, that's actually it' Aside from that (which is quite a big one, since rust and being underneath hydraulic Citroens are two of my least favourite things) it seems pretty good. It even smells like a DEF-equipped diesel in reasonable health when backed into the garage, rather than the BMW's toxic smokehouse of 1970s bus garage aroma.

So it's now residing indoors and I can't really justify Yet Another Insurance Policy - the short-term cover expired today - so it'll be hiding there until the PT Cruiser sells. I suspect some polish might land on it at the same time :D

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Got to agree with you about the CX's and age/price etc 

My first GTi Turbo 1 S2 was 1500 quid at 12 years old and it had lots of things for me to sort out at the time. This looks to have aged infinitely better in its time than that had. Although i'd still wager the CX was probably more fun to drive

(i've only driven a C6 once for about 2 miles compared to tens of thousands of miles in CX's so i cant really compare)

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18 hours ago, RichardK said:

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May I ask the steps and software you used? With my Xsara chucking me an airbag light up I might need to dive into this world myself... The adapters are £30ish on ebay, I can bring my own core2duo laptop (I guess it won't run in a vm like every previous time I've tried this fucking hateful task myself) 

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5 hours ago, beko1987 said:

May I ask the steps and software you used? With my Xsara chucking me an airbag light up I might need to dive into this world myself... The adapters are £30ish on ebay, I can bring my own core2duo laptop (I guess it won't run in a vm like every previous time I've tried this fucking hateful task myself) 

What worked: download a torrent of a prepatched VM, download VirtualBox 5.4 32 bit for Windows 7 etc., run.

But not until I'd tried a million dead ends trying to avoid torrents... And my laptop is an i5, but the XP image for VirtualBox would probably be dead easy to clone to a real XP machine!

https://www.berlingoforum.com/thread-23776.html

Was one I followed I think -  but after the weekend I can wetransfer to you.

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Awesome, thanks! Downloading it now. If it's happy running in a vm and whatever diag cable I buy is happy running from usb i'll use my surface pro

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Got it! Safely ensconced on my server! 

Does the install work without an adapter? Ie if I got the install working and ready to go I can buy a dongle and it works first time with no issues?... 😂🤞

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I'd have thought so. I can't remember which of my craptops I installed it on so I'll have to check later.

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14 hours ago, beko1987 said:

I can buy a dongle a

Also - which dongle would we need?

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Unlike the X3 that disgraced itself...

Insured the C6 (£300 new policy vs £900 hilarious Aviva quote to replace Cruiser) to do run to Basingstoke. Which is a terrible place and I have no idea why anyone from North of Watford should visit.

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So far so good

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 Very funny, AA truck. Not needed here.

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Pretty car

Veered off M1 because hour delay, down to M25 via rural Hemel Hellstead and Duncetable.

M25 20 minute delay. Plus M3 50mph roadworks. Why, Britain?!

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Success, Back via A34 but without unscheduled stops. 8 hours of driving, 40mpg, wobbles, shakes, floats, but no FTP and still relaxed after.

The reasons I bought a new C6 are still very apparent in this relic.

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Bonus: gf approves of it.

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They are a lovely and very distinctive looking car. I would imagine that once they get to a certain age, all the 5 o'clock ones have bitten the dust and been sent to become baked bean tins or washing machines. It goes to show that with any car, find a good one, look after it and many years' service can be achieved.

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If it's any help, I used the information at this site to set up a Windows XP virtual machine on a Windows 10 PC. Was fairly straightforward to do:

https://helpdeskgeek.com/virtualization/how-to-set-up-a-windows-xp-virtual-machine-for-free/

After that, managed to get Peugeot PP2000 software working on it, though since then I no longer have the required PP2000 interface hardware

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9 hours ago, GeordieInExile said:

Ah man. Looking at the pics there, I almost miss this thing. 

I can send you a picture of the Diagbox 422 errors if it helps alleviate that  😂

I think the battery, recent or not, lacks the volts to sufficiently jolt the beast into behaving! And that's after sitting on a charger as well. 100Ah/900CCA recommended...

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Still sorting out bits of paperwork, but the retention certificate from taking the plate off the PT Cruiser landed.

I already have a plate for the C6, and besides, I don't want to tempt fate. The last car to wear K666 and behave well was my E36 cabrio, so...

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And aside from the coolant pipe incident, which I feel I am partly to blame for by not realising the damn hose clips are THAT fiddly, the X3 is being good. Since the vacuum hose was reattached it's quieter, cleaner, and quicker - VERY quick. I'm also not convinced the transfer box is faulty, it's not showing the "dead transfer box" light, it pulls like a train, it feels like the front and back are getting in on the action - it's just the rumbling centre bearing or rear diff making it feel a bit off/worrying.

And the front suspension that sounds like an early 2000s experimental industrial band like Stomp but with old metal fence posts.

I need to know which brand of "OEM" (bollocks is it, even Sachs/Boge/Febi are just outsourcing and rebadging the cheapest third-party shit they can source for cars this age) suspension links and joints is the best one to go for. While powerflexing the whole lot is appealing, it's also £700 for the kit and a shitload of work.

There is a new noise since the vacuum system got hooked up.

It screams at points coincidental with high boost. At first I thought it might be a knackered turbo bearing, but a bit of Google suggests... okay, Google is useless, but a few forums with 335d and X3/X5 advice suggest the noise is commonly associated with a bad exhaust manifold gasket.

 The amount of soot in that vicinity of the engine bay would back up that assumption. If not the manifold gasket, maybe the one between the turbos.

It never surfaced when the vacuum pipe was off, even under hard acceleration when the big snail woke up - and you can hear the small snail singing all the time at low RPM - which is another reason to suspect the gasket, and not the turbo.

Sounds simple, but I know better, so I have a plan.

I'm going to ignore it. And not drive too aggressively.

Which is difficult when you have a smallish black BMW SUV that can show tailgaters a preferable safe distance by doing 65-$notsaying before they've even realised the car in front of you has moved out of the way...

Since the waterpump, thermostat and vacuum hose shenanigans - and oil and filter change - it's looking a bit less manky around the breathers too. I have a new PCV oil separator to fit, but I'm hoping that correct turbo/boost/fuelling behaviour is clearing some oil out of the intercooler. I'm not seeing such big clouds of smoke from the back when booting it, either.

Keeping life simple is the best plan right now because I'm going to take some time over this one.

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Really wish I had a four-poster lift. It would make C6 wrangling 10x easier. But I've looked up the procedure for replacing the EGRs and it sounds like a hideous job if you just want to driveway mechanic replace them or are paying for labour, but actually not too bad if you can take your time, don't have a deadline, and can work indoors.

The radiator has to come out, but I'm thinking "deep end, big breath, hold nose, dive!" and take the front bumper off (which needs rebuilding) and also headlights out to polish, and treat it in part as a restoration task.

My other thought is "This is 2006-7 electronics from a firm that is absolutely notorious for cheap over quality sourcing". How many ECUs and subsystems might have bad connections, leaking capacitors or other horrors? Where are the leaking NiCad battery packs lurking?

If I had more space I'd almost be tempted to buy another C6 for spares and experimental dismantling. But that's a slippery slope, that Citroëns often inspire - how many CX owners do you know who had more like a garden full of half-dead CXs?

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Turbos are generally extremely robust, if it had a problem with the turbo bearings that you could hear it would also be whanging oil out of both ends.

I agree it's most likely to be something else.

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21 hours ago, 2flags said:

They are a lovely and very distinctive looking car. I would imagine that once they get to a certain age, all the 5 o'clock ones have bitten the dust and been sent to become baked bean tins or washing machines. It goes to show that with any car, find a good one, look after it and many years' service can be achieved.

They're all 5 o'clock ones. Every single one. Maybe it was an act of spite for RHD models (and I notice it has that cursed invention, the remote brake cylinder, which makes me wonder if LHD ones have brakes more in keeping with the Citroen feel).

One of the things that has been fascinating about going back to C6 ownership is that in 2008-11 when I had my first one, my opinions about it being inferior to 'proper HP' Citroens and yet, also less impressive and cohesive than the cheaper, 'common' C5 II/X7 or whatever you call the proper C5s* were a source of friction on the C6 Owners forum.

Now I go back, EVERYONE had absolutely miserable experiences with their C6s in the end. Some were more dedicated or pragmatic, but none of these cars displayed the character and charm (and rugged refusal to die, in that neglected French car way) that an old CX or DS would, and none had found the wow-factor that the XM possessed to hold the owner's loyalty (I still consider the XM to be one of Citroën's best cars though - an XM Estate is a truly incredible vehicle, and they weren't that hard to maintain in hindsight).

Having discovered that on top of everything else, C6s RUST - the forums had lots of reports of rust after the cars got to six years old or so – I'm actually sickened by what PSA did to Citroën in this era. My instincts say "Peugeot was a family firm, still with family infliuence, and Citroën's popularity in the '80s and '90s really offended someone high up so they vowed to avoid the 605 vs XM situation again. Thing is, how many people want, or care about the existence of, a Peugeot 607**? The C6's nearest relative is the 407 Coupé – a car which has a couple of fans, but I don't believe got the HP3+ suspension option for the UK, and it was given a lavish leather-trimmed interior for the GT but failed miserably to capture the magic of the 406 Coupé or the 504 Pininfarina cars. Peugeot wanted Citroën to be the budget brand and Peugeot to be the prestige, but it was always Citroën prestige models that got the success, and Peugeot is remembered more for the budget ones of that era.

* one occasion, the dealer loaned me a 1.6 HDi steel spring C5 and I complained that the brakes were sharper and easier to regulate, that the layout of the RT5 nav was more 'bespoke' and looked better, and the C6 needed a fixed-hub wheel - and I've since had a 2009-ish C5 II Tourer on HP3+ that was nearer 300,000 miles than 100,000 and it was a bloody good thing until a SEAT Ibizia tried to kill it - @NorthernMonkey bought it and repaired the wing and headlight and I think it kept going for some time after, including an attendance at Shitefest near the bubble car museum.

** okay, I mock the 607, but it was on sale for a shorter period of time  from 2001-2007 and sold 6,551 in the UK judging by HML figures, of which 600 are SORN and 229 are on the road. However, that's for a car which went off sale when the C6 went on sale. If you judge by the same point in time - 12 years after sales/production end - the 607 had over 1,000 still on the road and 600 SORN.

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9 hours ago, RichardK said:

I need to know which brand of "OEM" (bollocks is it, even Sachs/Boge/Febi are just outsourcing and rebadging the cheapest third-party shit they can source for cars this age) suspension links and joints is the best one to go for.

TRW is/was supposed to be OE supplier around that time. They’ve seemed decent enough to me. 

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1 hour ago, EspenO said:

TRW is/was supposed to be OE supplier around that time. They’ve seemed decent enough to me. 

For the BMW? (I'm asking because I saw TRW logos on the C6 today 😂)

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