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rickvw72 fleet: One lady owner Ford specialist


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Thought I’d put the varied fleet together in one post, make life easier for updates.

Starting with the oldest, longest owned and Lowest. The old bug:

CCC039CD-A6DA-4D00-B798-EB3606DC4863.thumb.jpeg.1d9fd72c2a61f68c2c3c0ff7474b3bb5.jpegThe car: 1972 Bug. My first car bought in 1999. Early panels, 67 only rear end. Removable panels on the back, high ratio GT gearbox, 1600 twin port engine. A combination that will fire you along at a terrifying 90mph!

2020 news: didn’t turn a wheel 🥺

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Second longest owned, since 2007. 

Mk2 Golf 16v GTI. My former everyday car, I’ve done 60,000 in this. On its third engine with me mind, now a tweaked 2.0 ABF from a mk3 Golf. Dyno read 172bhp when done several years ago.

Ive rebuilt this car twice, after originally arriving damaged, and later being restored properly between 2015-2018. 
Awesome machine.

2020 update: speedo clocks rebuilt, new headliner fitted. Done about 1000 miles, now in bed for winter. 
Engine bay tidying is the current project on this one. Clutch is hanging on as well now. The poor  clutch has had a hard life.

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Third longest owned, the biggest, slowest and most useful thing in the world.

1989 VW Caravelle with twin sliding doors. This I bought damaged in 2009, as a stop gap!

45CB1822-3154-41AE-A568-8C16EADA7BC8.thumb.jpeg.61b81f30e70a4d0ffc2cf75e30486f1f.jpeg2020 update: Not been out often in this year of crazy madness. New exhaust acquired, current issues include a slight coolant leak, gearbox mount gone, clutch juddering. Longer term issues are the body, at 32 years old, the rear arches are on their way, as are truthfully the sills. Tailgate rotten too, and a good replacement is more ££ than a usable car. 

plenty to keep me busy with this one coming up. 

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241F390C-1981-4992-B969-DAA250874781.thumb.png.1ce1aca43f56c8ecddbc7052ad4ddb82.pngThe fourth is more Autoshite than the last three, a 2002 Zafira DTI. 

No pics of this one, and I’ve had it four years! (Pic from google, but identical apart from mines an 02 plate)

2020 update: parked up since March with Covid lockdown rendering it reduntant. At 216,000 miles, this is gonna be re mot’d and sold soonish. 

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  • 1 month later...

New year update, what needs what

Civic. Air con now fixed. Mot this next week then due a service. Noisy gearbox needs attention, and clutch on its way. Currently on 155k miles.

Accord. Decent tyres acquired, need to be swapped. Old tyres have plenty of tread but are noisy chineseum. Rear anti roll bar knocking. Currently on 202k miles.

Mk2 Golf. Hibernating. Got Bilstein shocks, upgraded headlight loom and new mats. Not till it warms up though. Currently on 157k miles. But it’s triggers broom.

T25. Due mot in next 7 days. Exhaust system clinging to life! On 144k at present.

 Beetle. Needs something doing with it. It’ was registered New Year’s Day 1972 so 49 years today. Would like it back on the road this year. 

Fourtrak. Dear god it’s rotten. Slowly improving. Might it get done in 2021.

Zafira. Laid up, needs mot and potential sale or roffle maybe?much love for a 220k diesel Zafira of 2002 vintage?

Also have a large number of parts to sell.

And contemplating a job move for more work. Guess I’m not gonna be bored for a while! 5A0790C1-2250-4C81-BBD2-250D84DCB5FC.thumb.jpeg.621b3765fc9dc3ef583e0a5add8742a5.jpeg


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The beetle is lovely, it's nice to see one tastefully modded and able to keep up with modern traffic.

I had a Zafira diesel once (briefly) during my stewardship it got gradually harder and harder to start before becoming James Bond esq every time you went near the starter, if you could ignore that fact, it wasn't a bad motor really!

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Today’s progress.

more Fourtrak welding, and we reinstalled my brothers BMW M3 engine that’s just been rebuilt after OMGHGF occured. Both the block itself, and the head needed skimming with a custom head gasket to repair. 
Ever bought parts for an M3? You really don’t want to (£££ ouch)






217AC8A6-DBDF-4C02-A150-40AF2EBFA49E.thumb.jpeg.b123941f92a871331e3f123ac05a3460.jpegRe made the outer panel at the bottom of the arch too, and primed up all the areas of welding inside this arch though. No photos of this sadly, it was -1 in the workshop when I gave up! 



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  • rickvw72 changed the title to Fleet news. MoT season, Tyring news, Xmas gifts!

January update.

crazy times for me work wise, as I teach in FE, so been a bumpy ride!

In the midst a few mots were looming. I don’t like having mots in the crappy winter months, specially on the old cars,  but circumstances dictate.

Civic- new arrival last year, so the first mot in my ownership. Result - fail on one bulb, can’t moan there.

T25- Normally a summer mot, this was on an extended test, expiring mid jan. Awoken from a 4 month slumber, starting without a jump, the old thing cracked into life, and only issue was the flasher relay stuck. Quick slap fixed that. Result - pass, no advisories! I’ll take that on a 32 year old van.

christmas was kind to the old Mk2 Golf. My presents this year an updated headlight loom with relays added, a set of bilstein dampers, and new interior mats. Hope this year improves and this can get fitted and the car used more this year.

Snaffled up a set of partworn tyres too, in 205 55 16. 50 quid for four, 2 with 7.5mm tread, 2 with 7mm, matched set of Falkens, all 18mth old. These are going on the daily Accord. 


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  • 4 weeks later...

Gave the accord a wash, clay bar, polish and wax. Cursed my stupidity for buying a large car!



Cant recommend these higher to be fair. A proper quality machine, cleaned up nice for 203k.

Made my personal debut having work done at dealers this week. After 21 years of driving! Accord went in for airbag recall. Fixed in 20 minutes to be fair, great service.

I expected a massive list of faults from them, and an excruciatingly detailed quote for work. Didn’t get any of it though, and was sent a video of my car being checked over which was pretty cool! Was surprised at the fairly empty showroom and forecourt though. Lots of Honda Es, and a few used CRVs but not too much else, sad sign of the times maybe.

Work still continues on the Fourtrak when I can, filler work on the drivers side arch, and making up the bits for the passenger side. Under the arches rust and loose sealer is being ground off, rust treatment, primer then painted. Starting to feel a bit of progress happening now.

Tidied up the unit too, and actually have space! Can’t remember when that last happened.



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  • rickvw72 changed the title to Fleet news. Honda Recalled, Daihatsu Rebuild, Unit Reorganise
  • 1 month later...

Hondas update.

Civic. Started to clay bar and polish the paintwork on this, coming up very well. Possibly never been polished before. Following on from its service, cleaning up is next step. Been practicing PDR of recent times and bought some kit, so will be giving some of its scars ago soon.

Accord. After several months and approx 6000 miles, a clonk developed on pulling away. A quick check on the ramp and the nsf compliance bush was toasted. 
Parts ordered, and onto the ramp she goes. 

About a second later, I realised the rear bolt was fused inside the bush housing for the wishbone. Cue much swearing and epic amounts of violence inflicted via rip saw, and i sawed the bastard off.

Rest of the job went simple, a £75 bush removal tool made easy work of the bushes, and I bought Genuine bushes for £22 a side, so I can do the other side too when I get time.

im back at work now too, so slipped on my bargain Falken tyre set, i scored for 50 quid a couple of months back. The tyres and bushes have made an astonishing improvement to what I’d class as a civilised car compared to the rest of the fleet. It’s a fantastic thing to drive now, great tyres, no tired bushes and properly aligned. A great testament to Honda as it passes 203,000 miles.




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  • rickvw72 changed the title to Fleet news. Honda Fettling.
  • 2 weeks later...

Fourtrak progress is slow, but continuing. To spur myself on I made a purchase:


An old Murex 235 mig welder.

235 amp, 3 phase beast. Had a play yesterday and it’s an excellent bit of kit. 30 years old, so it’s a classic. (Not as old as my 1967 compressor though.)

Accord boot took it with the seats up.

Accord and Civic are the only fleet on the road at the minute, and both continue as Honda intended. I had an accord thread which I won’t continue as there would be nothing to report, although I washed the Accord this weekend with Bilt Hamber snow foam, first time I’ve used a foam, and the car was completely minging. 

Spray on, jetwash off. That’s nice and simple, and gave excellent results. The effort polishing and waxing it a few months ago, along with the impressive foam stuff, meant it went from 2000 miles of winter road shite filthy, to shiny in 30 minutes.

Road salt + Japanese metal = tin worm. Arches are starting to blister, so there’s a job on the list for spring. The question is how far do I go?

Options are, go full on, gtind it all back, cut out the pitted steel, weld and paint the quarters. 
Or, sand the rust back, rust convert and paint the arch lips, which will slow it but not “fix” it.

Ive got the kit for either, so it’s a tough one, as if I go first option, I might as well paint both bumpers, as they have scuffs and scrapes. And then I’m into restoring the thing.

See the issue is this really. It’s a great car, comfy, does what I need perfectly and I can’t think of a newer replacement I want. But it’s also a 204,000 mile £700 car, that’s used for commuting and carrying stuff. Do I let it drop to bits or try to make it tidy?


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  • rickvw72 changed the title to Fleet news. MiG bought, Japanese rust decisions
  • 2 weeks later...

Bank holiday + half term = fun.

Started by washing and taxing the Mk2 GTI. Filled it up with fuel and had some great fun on the lanes between my house and unit.

528A4201-FE24-470C-BB76-A6D8F6F45DAA.thumb.jpeg.170b6cb5868c66e323c8682ed96dc375.jpeg049962FC-D9FA-41DF-8793-A0E77E013887.thumb.jpeg.90ddf3f1297fabe5d6d3440900805be5.jpegI’ve had this nearly 13 years now. I can’t imagine ever selling it. Probably my favourite car of all time.

Welding continues on the Fourtrak, new 235 amp welder a revelation. I’ll take some pics next time, as I’m onto the passenger arch now, and it’s starting to be made of actual steel at the back, rather than corn flakes and mud. 

Both Hondas have needed fuel. Cleaned out the Civic washer bottle that was gummed up, and now it squirts like a pressure washer. Nothing else needed.


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  • rickvw72 changed the title to rickvw72 fleet: The Mk2 is taxed, the Fourtraks still rotten
  • 2 months later...

Fleet update.

Accord - someone has bumped into the rear bumper, and has damaged the paint. Had a small knock from the front suspension, so have retorqued  the nuts and bolts, and all seems good now. 
Had this 10 months / 8000 miles now. Had one suspension bush go in that time. Averaged 45mpg, useful for stuff like ...

9C7148BB-C742-4A7F-93DC-F1AAB9B26931.thumb.jpeg.040b10e12829a6439807505291618907.jpegCollected a bargain Facebook sale engine and gearbox for the Civic.

Civic - owned over a year now. Still got faults it had when bought, clutch near end, noisy gearbox and tired CV joint. Gearbox (and full engine with ancillaries, spare) now acquired. Will be getting fixed soon. 

Mk2 - all good. Will get regular use now weathers improved. 

T25 -

BE699DC7-4116-4DBC-A75D-458FB726ADAD.thumb.png.1d354286b06149ffd4e5883bc5b14b4e.pngMade it Santa Pod last weekend, and afterwards we headed to New Forest for a few days, in glorious weather. For an 1989 Van, the old bus did near 500 miles all told, having spent most last year idle. Not one issue, and I reckon it did 31mpg. Usual cruising speed about 65mph, too, so not so painful. It’s terrible how overrated these VWs are. You wouldn’t beleive how many 20 plus year old vans I saw from other makes doing similar (it was 0)

Fourtrak - made of rust, and slowly coming on. I’ll update the thread when I’ve done the drivers sill and floor, which is next area. Looks a mess at the minute, need to get it primed up properly soon.


My brother is jealous of the time and money I’ve wasted on a great big blue rusty tractor, so has bought a Discovery TD5. Owned about two weeks and so far it’s shat all it’s water out, then it’s steering juice, now starts when the ignition switch remembers its job. Bet the traks welded up by the time the disco is drivable. 

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  • rickvw72 changed the title to rickvw72 fleet: 500miles in a 32year old Van

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