By Peter C
I bought a lovely Mini Cooper S from @Sunny Jim which my wife and I collected yesterday. See here:
The Cooper made the 250 mile 4.5 hour journey to Buckinghamshire (from North Wales!) under its own steam but all was not well under the bonnet. The fresh air vents were providing anything but fresh air, I was choking on oily fumes. I stopped on route and wiped a lot of oil from the rocker cover and gently kept going, keeping the engine revs below 3k.
Before you read any further, I have absolutely no qualms about the car or the deal I made with @Sunny Jim I bought an 18 year old car with 120k, sold as seen, of course there will be problems!
I investigated further this morning. There was oil all over the front of the engine and on top of the exhaust manifold shield.
I went to remove plug lead No 2 and it came off in two pieces, the metal connector has split from the cable.
Next I removed the sparkplugs. Plugs 1 and 4 were a little moist but plugs 2 and 3 were sinking in engine oil.
The rocker cover gasket and plug well seals were obviously knackered, a typical R50/53 fault.
To get the rocket cover off...
All this had to be removed. It's by no means a difficult job but it was time consuming. There is a bit more space under the bonnet of my W123 & W124!
I've bought a new set of leads £18 and I'm picking up the gasket set tomorrow morning (£40). Hopefully the whole lot will go back together without any issues.
Look at this engine, it's hard to believe that it's done 120k miles in 18 years. Everything under the rocker cover looks mint!
In other news, to replace a blown brake light bulb I had to remove the entire light unit. How stupid. Modern* cars ehh?
The annoying rattle from the tailgate was silenced with a 4 inch length of insulation tape, wrapped around the lock catch.
I do like a clean exhaust pipe. Or two. Out came the Brasso and I am pleased with the shine.
And finally, I've noticed that the small lights in the front bumper flick on randomly. According to the experts on a Facebook group, the presence of LED bulbs is upsetting the system.
Been far too long* since I have done one of these..
Last night, I spent some time ( and not an inconsiderable number of £) ordering up parts to fix 4 of the fleet. Additionally, the Audi goes in on Monday for two front tyres.
By midnight I was cash poor and not yet part rich, so I downed the laptop and turned to idly browsing my phone..
Staying strong through the sea of " for sale" tags here, I upped the ante and broke out TEH DADDY!
Up in these parts, the bargains are oft far flung - population density and geography conspiring against the local bargain hunter.
Due to this, my default search includes a radius of 150 miles - annoyingly flagging up NI cars not worth the extortionate repatriation costs.
However, it also reaches into the far flung Ecosse.. catching exotic locations such as Duns and Huntly.
But not so this time, for lo, the tree did bear fruit and it doth fall not far from my abode.
This is the collection leg of the adventure, a TTT/ Split_Pin co-produced Caper.
My lift arrives at 8.
To mark the genesis of my fleet project thread I here present my new car: a 1997 Nissan Micra Shape-
It really looks that good. There is a reason for this: its previous owner was an old lady who loved the thing so much so she made every effort to keep it in good shape. It originally came from Fleet in the GU postcode which suggests to me it was bought by the present dealer at auction, hence arriving down here in Kent. Before seeing the car I checked its MOT history and its only fails were thanks to broken stoplights, which shows me that it was very well cared for. I suppose an example of this was that on the last MOT, an advisory was a corroded rear silencer. The silencer on the car when I saw it was new. Methinks the lady wanted to keep it as good as possible. It was kept in a garage and so all the bumpers and black trim are very black and the tyres are in very good condition. Spare never used! Also included a free Dettol first aid kit from 1997.
This car has 15000 genuine miles on the clock. We clocked over 15000 during the test drive! The lady owner really only trundled around her village in it and the MOT shows that it only did some meagre miles between tests. This, of course, came at a price. We saw a cherry red Micra from 2002 at the same dealer. Paint was shoddy and when they washed it the boot had massive sections of bare metal and it wasn't very happy. This car, however, is in fabulous condition and there was no contest between the two cars- it really is that good, inside and out. Immaculate interior, driver's airbag, cassette player... all there and all functioning (apart from cassette thanks to new battery and failed display). This meant that I bought it for £1600, £100 over what was my uppermost limit, but I knew I wouldn't see another like this that was in as good shape for a fair while. It was priced very ambitiously, at £1990, so I'm content in the fact I managed to slash a few hundred off the price. There wasn't that much paperwork though. All the dealership received was the logbook with 3 service stamps from 1998, 1999 and 2000, the radio key pass, a National Trust sticker, and the original paperwork holder. I suspect the old lady died and had her car auctioned, and the massive file of paperwork is now someone's egg carton, along will everything else she owned.
As always, this car isn't exactly in showroom condition. While the inside is great and the floor is solid, and the underseal is in great shape, the not undersealed parts need a small looking at. Mainly the rear of the driver's side sill. It's really the only bubbling on the car. I suspect a well aimed stonechip managed to fester over the wintery salted roads, making it rust even more. It's around the size of a 5p piece, and will give me the opportunity to spray the insides of the sill with some chain oil to prevent any further corrosion. Behind the fuel tank there are a few rusty joints- places where the spraygun cannot get paint onto- which some Vactan and Dynax should put to rights. Alternator belt looks original because of the cracking and Nissan badges and will need doing soon as well as the front plate. As much as I like the 90's font and original dealer surround, the dishevelled R and general water ingress is a persistant MOT advisory. It could be the MOT station being strict (and most likely is considering there's a Saxo down the road with far worse blackening), however for the sake of peace of mind and all that, I'll get a new one made. The rear has already been replaced indicating this has happened before.
All in all, I think this is a nice plucky motor. I'll have it by the end of the week; just got to sort out tax, insurance, and it's going to have an MOT. As part of the deal it's getting the MOT and an oil and filter change which will be something ticked off the list. It has some love scratches and chips here and there, but it drives well, is stiff and controllable, and should make out to be a nice summer project!
Zel's Motoring Adventures...Jag, Citroen, Mercs, AC Model 70 & A Sinclair C5...22/07 - Merc Cleaning Begins...By Zelandeth
Well I've been meaning to sign up here in forever, but kept forgetting. Thanks to someone over on another forum I frequent poking me about it recently the subject was forced back into my very brief attention span for long enough to get me to act on the instruction.
I figure that my little varied fleet might bring you lot some amusement...
1993 Lada Riva 1.5E Estate (now fuel injected, as I reckon the later cars should have been from the factory...).
1989 Saab 900i Automatic.
1987 Skoda 120LX 21st Anniversary Special Edition.
1985 Sinclair C5.
2009 Peugeot 107 Verve.
Now getting the photos together has taken me far longer than I'd expected...so you're gonna get a couple of photos of each car for now, and I'll come back with some more information tomorrow when I've got a bit more time...
Firstly...The Lada. Before anyone asks - in response to the single question I get asked about this car: No, it is not for sale. Took me 13 years and my father's inheritance to find the thing.
Yes, it's got the usual rusty wings...Hoping that will be resolved in the next couple of months.
Next, a proper old Saab. One of the very last 8 valve cars apparently, and all the better for it. I've driven two 16v autos and they were horrible - the auto box works sooooo much better with the torque curve of the 8 valve engine. Just wish it had an overdrive for motorway cruising...
Next up a *real* Skoda...back when they put the engine where it belongs, right out the back. In the best possible colour of course...eye-searingly bright orange.
Seat covers have been added since that photo was taken as it suffers from the usual rotting seat cloth problem that affects virtually all Estelles.
Then we have possibly the world's scruffiest Sinclair C5...
Realised when looking for this that I really need to get some more photos of the thing...I use it often enough after all! We have a dog who's half husky, so this is a really good way of getting him some exercise.
Finally - again, I really need to take more photos of - we have the little Pug 107.
Included for the sake of variety even if it's a bit mainstream! First (and probably to be the only) new car I've bought, and has been a cracking little motor and has asked for very little in return for putting up with nearly three years of Oxford-Milton Keynes commuter traffic, before finally escaping that fate when my housemate moved to a new job. Now it doesn't do many miles and is my default car for "when I've managed to break everything else."
I'll fill in some more details tomorrow - I warn you though that I do tend to ramble...
Hi all, new to the forum. Thought you might be interested in what I've got myself into
I'd been after my first classic car for a while. If it's big and made in the 70s I'm interested. Looked at few things like P6s, Zodiacs, Victors, SD1s and various other things. Problem was I didn't want to spend a boatload of money on something that looked alright but underneath was actually a total heap. The solution was to buy a complete heap in the first place and spend the money fixing it.
So in January I went ahead and bought this from a colleague at work who was moving away and needed to get shot of it.
It's a part finished restoration (I prefer not started) and it needs a whole load of help if it's going to stand any chance of using a road again.
It's right up my street. Granada Coupes are quite odd and certainly stand out from the norm.
It still has the original engine, box, interior and most trim.
It came with loads of panels I need to repair it (mostly original Ford stock).
It came with so many spares I could probably build a few Granadas and still have stuff left over.
It was cheap.
Most of the front end has been cut off.
Most of the body structure is quite rotten.
It's going to take me ages.
I work at a restoration company and my boss kindly allows me to keep the car there. So I've got access to all the gear I need to restore it. I've been busy on the car for a while now so will post more pics over the coming days.