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Maestro, please. - And Again


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13 minutes ago, beko1987 said:

Bet a 2l efi one flew! They don't look heavy! Could the brakes steering gearbox and suspension keep up though? 

vented disks, honda 5 speed close ratio gearbag, lowered suspenders & rear arb

yeah was nippy enough but goodly amount of torques to enable laziness

all maestros have decent brakes really

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I had a customer who drove a red clubman diesel. He was a New Zelander and had the most kiwi accent I've ever heard. 

I can still hear him saying :

"it's tha frahmpiest caah ah've ever sin bit it's fahkin emazing on phewell" 

Apologies to any kiwis. 

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I'm difficult to buy for, apparently.  Part of this is because I have pretty much everything I need and I'm not good at asking for things I want.  When I do ask for a specific item it's usually for one of the cars and it's usually met with the objection of "I can't buy you that, it's not a proper gift" which I find very confusing.  So most people have resorted to giving me money so I can spend it as I like, which is fine, but I would derive quite a bit of joy from unwrapping bits of car while everyone else is unwrapping their soap gift sets and tech.  Ah well, guess I'm not like other people.

Anyway, all this is to say the Maestro is getting the benefit of my festive money this year in the form of new headlining fabric and new rear shocks.  The former is a job I'm looking forward to, I really dislike when I my fingernails touch the painted headlining board when I use the sunvisors.  The latter is a job I'm not looking forward to at all, the suspension has clearly never been touched so I'm expecting all sorts of bolt related shenanigans and I have to use the spring compressors which nobody likes doing... but I think my spine will thank me and it will be nice not to have stuff bouncing around in the boot every time I go over a bump.

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The next video will be going up on Tuesday the 5th of January.  All video uploads after that will be on Tuesdays and I'm aiming for a maximum of 1 per week, and a minimum of 1 per month.  Depending on how much content I actually have available, and how popular the uploads prove to be, will dictate how often I upload, it's a part-time thing after all.

The next video will go into more detail on the leak hunting, how it's done, and how confusing it can be, what worked and what didn't.  In the meantime, here's some update to tide you over until upload day rolls around.  So, I did think the water was coming in through the seam on the a pillar to sill panel under the door seal.  by the looks of the black paint that's been applied, someone else thought along these lines too.  The seam was a bit gappy (there's a few factory seams like this, just seems to be a case of cba from new) so I loaded it up and smoothed it out as best I could with some seam sealer and, once dry, plonked the door seal back on.


Then it was acase of waiting for some rain, which came along fairly promptly.  Had my attempt to seal up the rear light cluster worked?



Initial signs were very promising, until I checked the light cluster itself.


I also found water was still getting into the front so I removed the door card.  The drain holes in the door were clear, and the moisture membrane looks to have never been disturbed so it didn't look as though the water was getting in that way.  I did find out why the front door speaker on this side (and probably the other side, I've not looked into it yet) wasn't working which is that the paper cone has failed and water was getting onto the connections.  I unplugged the speaker and plugged it back in and now it works again.



With all that done, I started putting tools away and found I'd gained an assistant.  Showed willing, just a little slow.


Buttoned everything up, left the car again and the weather dutiful rained all over everything and I found water was still getting in.  I was fairly confident it was getting past the seal on the rear light cluster now but not sure about how it was getting in at the front so decided to load up the one spot where the roof seams meet the windscreen seal with some Captain Tolley's Creeping Crack Cure.  A lot of product disappeared into the seal so my gut feeling was that this was the culprit.  Sure enough, some rain later and the product had reappeared inside the car and since I knew where I'd put it in and now know where it got out I can somewhat confidently say that it's the windscreen seal or bonding that's failed which is letting the water in up front.


Because I was fed up of bailing out water every time I wanted to use the car, I stuck the Lanchester's half-cover on.  This proved successful at keeping the rain out and since it covered the two suspected ingress points, I felt like I was on the right track.  Then Storm Bella happened and broke the cover, so I had to sew that back together again and bail quite a bit of water out of the car.


Then it was a case of waiting for products to arrive.  Covid restrictions and the festive period meant everything was delayed until today, when most items turned up.  This included some butyl tape which I used on the rear light cluster.  My other attempts at making a seal for this had failed because the seals weren't fat enough.  I used two layers of tape and that might have been too much.  Hopefully it will fill wherever the void actually is in the cluster and prevent further water ingress.  Up front I used some Arbomast sealant.  I then took the car for a drive to try and warm it up and dry it out before leaving it overnight to see whether or not it lets any water in... it probably won't rain now, unlike every other night just recently.



It's a slightly messy job with the Arbomast, I'll clean off the excess once I know I don't need to put more in, the stuff is non-setting so it's quite easy to clean up at any point after the fact.  There was quite a large void behind the windscreen trim on the driver's side so I wonder if the bonding material on this side just wasn't adequate.  Fingers crossed that this solves it, Arbomast is usually really good stuff for this sort of job.  Another arrival was the Metro head restraint trims because I was fed up of the passenger one rattling.  The car didn't have any trims on this side so it was the metal bars of the head restraint rattling against the metal socket inside the seat, the plastic trim acts as a bush and sort of locking mechanism so the restraint is adjustable.  I managed to break one of the trims, but luckily the seller had one left so I've ordered that and will replace the broken one when it arrives.  Case of me being slightly hamfisted and the plastic being very old and fragile.


Another item to arrive was the seed bulbs so I could sort out the one telltale that had failed.  Happily that was just a blown bulb and was the only bulb in the dashboard that wasn't working.



Someone mentioned that the clock looked like it wasn't illuminated.  Now, I was pretty sure it was but it didn't go brighter or dimmer when you turned the lights on so I thought it best to see what was actually going on with that.  Looks like whoever did the fuse repair also did the bulb repair here and there's an LED soldered in place of the bulb holder.  Funnily enough, I do have the bulb holder for this, it was in the car, and the new bulbs I've got are a direct fit.  Once I dig out the soldering iron we'll undo this repair and put a proper bulb and holder in there.


Another exciting order to arrive was the new headlining material and glue.  The board in the car is in reasonable, if not perfect, condition and since the Maestro is a hatchback I'm hoping removal of the board will be fairly hasslefree.  Trying to get moulded headlining boards out of saloon cars is a horror all its own.  I went for a generic pale grey rather than anything exciting since the more exciting options I could find weren't the sort of material I wanted to use.



Shock absorbers also arrived today, as did the front bumper corner that was feared lost in the post which actually arrived two weeks late.  No fault of the seller on that one, just a victim of seasonal circumstances.  Plenty of good content still to come on this car.  Annoyingly, since resolving the rattling head restraint I'm now aware of the rattling aerial, something I hope to resolve when I have the headlining out since I should then have good access to it.  I imagine a trim clip or bit of foam, or something of that sort, has come loose and is allowing the aerial housing to rattle inside the A-pillar.  I've got a valve cover gasket on the way to cure the one oil leak I know the car has.  I also suspect the manifold gasket might have failed which is the cause of the blowing exhaust noise I can't pin down.  If the gasket has blown out underneath the manifold where I can't get in to feel for exhaust come out, that would explain it, especially since the car quietens down considerably once warm.  Gaskets are plentiful and cheap, happily.  Everything needed on this car seems to be plentiful and cheap, it's so nice to be able to so easily find things.

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After leaving the car without its cover on overnight I can confirm the leaks I knew about seem to be fixed now.  The problem is the leak I didn't know about: tailgate seal.  The seal on the car is pretty flat and tired, adjusting the striker/latch won't help.  Maestro uses a finned top seal (assume what's fitted is original) that's larger than anything I can find and I'd like to go a little larger than what's on the car because I suspect the measurements are squashed down a bit.

Here's a little diagram of what I'm after, with measurements.  I've checked the usual places and while I can find top seals with and without fins, I can't find a finned top seal with these dimensions.  Ideally, I want one that's ever so slightly bigger because I suspect the measurements I've got are on the small side of what should be there, due to squashage.  The seal has a small fin on the top, and it also has a prominent ridge on one side, that's not a deformity of the seal, that's how it's actually shaped, and I can't find anything like that at all.


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I haven't found a match as yet.  It may not be the problem after a bit of thinking and investigation today.  It was super parky outside so I had a crack at this leak hunting and little else. Failed to take any photos. Took the tailgate panel off and it's wet inside while the boot was basically dry except for a bit on the inside lip of the bottom of the tailgate. The wiper spindle area all looks dry, the water seems to be getting into the tailgate and draining out into the car, possibly through the rear window seal at the bottom where Maestros do tend to suffer from rust a bit. Considering how much wetter the inside of the tailgate and trim panel was than anything else, I suspect my issue is actually in the tailgate and it's just overflowing into the boot area, which means even if I had a really good tailgate seal it wouldn't make any difference.

So, I made a moisture membrane out of a binbag and some tape and we'll see how that does. I've got a feeling that's the wrong solution, the back of the trim panel has disentegrated foam tape on it that would have sealed against the tailgate and served as a moisture membrane, it also has vents in the trim panel which my new moisture membrane has effectively sealed up. I'll probably replace the foam tape with the butyl tape I've got left over and squidge some Arbomast into the tailgate window seal and that will probably fix the issue.

Happily, the front of the car is still bone dry so I think I've cured the water leak up front now. I doubt the videos on this particular adventure will do well, but hey, it's all part of old car ownership and care when you don't own a several hundred square feet workshop with lovely lighting.

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Got a tip on a potential candidate on eBay: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Large-Car-BOOT-SEAL-Trim-Rubber-EDGE-Mazda-Bongo-Roof-Seal/121741575480

Listed as being for a Mazda Bongo, it's a generic O profile top seal rather than a finned version.  It's oversized compared the seal on the car but so far, it's the nearest to anything big enough I've been able to find anywhere, the various rubber extrusion and seal suppliers elsewhere only seem to carry stuff that's too small or much too big, the Maestro seal seems to be a fairly non-standard size, at least for contemporary common applications.

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I've been having trouble getting the Maestro to warm up now that it's almost cold enough for me to get the big coat out.  Today, it didn't matter how or where I drove it, or for how long, I struggled to get the temp gauge up to 1/4.  As soon as you got over 30mph, the temperature just fell almost down to the stop on the gauge.  I don't think there's a blockage, the radiator and hoses all get warm and the engine too, the heaters put out what little is available to them, the engine just doesn't want to warm up.  If the engine bay was hot while the gauge read cold, or the radiator had cold spots, or the hoses were differing temperatures then I would question the guage, or the radiator, fact is the engine bay is just staying really cold.

I have ordered a new thermostat, that seemed a sensible starting point.  I'm also wondering if fitting a radiator muff would help.  The engine is a bit lost in the engine bay and there's lots of space for cold air to get in and leech all the hot air out so I wonder if the cold running is in part just due to the nature of the car.  I would have expected the little A series to be working pretty hard in the Maestro and to warm up pretty quickly.  I haven't ventured onto the motorway because I've not had call to and I suspect doing 70 in fourth isn't going to be an aural delight, even if I did I don't expect it would help because there's going to be so much more cold air being pushed into the engine bay at those speeds.

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  • vulgalour changed the title to Maestro, please. - And Again

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