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2005 Smart ForTwo Cabriolet - Mouldy, less broken, smelly & yellow


SmokinWaffle
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Hello!

I'm going to make a thread for each car I intend to keep for a bit or do some work on. I know that seems excessive and it'd be easier to make a fleet thread - but my mind doesn't work that way and I can't cope with messy documentation - plus this way it helps me keep track and motivates me more! Hooray!

You may or may not remember back in April @Merryck putting this pocket sized biohazard in the For sale section:

At the time I lived in Kent - not too far from him - but was imminently moving to South Yorkshire. We had a chat, I was interested but decided against it as I already had enough going on with a new job, moving 2 peoples lives 250 miles up the country - it just wasn't the right time sadly.

Then a week later, he messages me again and offers it to me - gratis. What a bastard. Now I can't say no...

So as well as getting my BX and my other halves Corsa up there (both road legal - driven, and getting and un-roadworthy 405 estate up there somehow, and trying to find a home for a K11 Micra I had in the garage before I left - now I have to figure out how to get a mouldy, not-MOT'd and barely running smart car from the very edge of the South East Cost to the Midlands pretty sharpish!

Why do I do this to myself....where there is a will, there is a way!

 

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Thankfully - as always - @worldofceri came to the rescue - and a week or so (I can't even remember - it's all a blur) after I moved in, shortly followed by a 405, this rolled off of the back of the trailer, and with a push (and Ceri sitting on a recycling bag, in a mask with the door half open) - onto my new driveway:

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Lovely.

On first look - aside from the bumper damage (all plastic panels everywhere so not a huge deal) - it's actually quite tidy - albeit grimy.

Lets take a look inside.

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Ah.

Smells......odd. Very odd. Makes me itch if I sit inside of it and frankly, genuinely makes me feel not quite right - must be the mould spores flying about.

I was it in for a little bit taking the battery out to charge it and didn't feel amazing afterwards.

First thing was to take a look at the snapped belt:

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After some googling it seems that this does the Alternator and the water pump - but when it snapped it wasn't run for very long at all afterwards - so fingers crossed. Wasn't driven onto the trailer either as it couldn't be started - due to the dead battery.

Seems they are actually quite simple to work on which surprised me - and very well documented online.

After some eBaying I found a genuine belt:

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Difference between that and a random brand was like, £4/5 so why not...

Got that - it's now sitting in the garage awaiting fitment.


Fast forward to....an amount of time later, and my other half got me a lovely Karcher K2 pressure washer with all the gubbins for my birthday and I set about attacking it with it:

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Satisfying.

Looked much better afterwards - this was purely a quick one with just high pressure water to get rid of the surface grime:

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It's a new colour! Funky. Wonder what it'll look like when I get some soap on it.

Wait, I thought, if this inside was mouldy - that implies there is some sort of place damp gets in. Turns out, there is a little gap in the left hand side of the vinyl roof - which I obviously didn't consider when pressure washing it with the power of a thousand angry men.

Opened the passenger door, and low and behold, footwell pond!

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Nice.


Dried it all up with a towel as best I could - it's dried since due to the bloody hot weather we've had thankfully.

 

I just need to pull my finger out and actually purchase a big ol' halfords socket set so I can start working on cars without struggling and we will hopefully have some progress of a real kind.


Favourite bit so far - the rear hatch!

 

Plan is to get the belt fitted, check fluids, get it so I can at least hear it running before I sink any more time into it - then take out all the interior and burn deep clean it, service it, get it MOT'd and then hopefully it'll make a nice daily car for nipping back and fourth to work in.

 

Looking forward to getting the roof fully down too - it's yellow, weird, and convertible. It's like my ideal car.

I can also push it up and down the drive with one hand and very little effort. :-)

Any comments, tips, tricks, ideas, suggestions ect are all very welcome.

Was considering signing up to this site as it's £15 a year - but has literally everything you could want to know about working on them it seems. Paywalls make me a bit annoyed but I'm not ready to cut my nose of just yet. Too young. https://www.evilution.co.uk/

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As I've said before get a Bissell spot cleaner, if you were still in that Kent, you could have borrowed mine, wouldn't be without it now, will bring those seats up a treat.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/313630621746?epid=2304969910&hash=item4905d78032:g:eyAAAOSwbRphAqSu

Image 1 - Bissell Spot Clean ProHeat Carpet Cleaner 36981

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White vinegar in a spray bottle kills mould as it burns it, smells a bit though it does fade eventually!

A wet/dry vac also is a great thing to have for the extractionphase after you've scrubbed and shampoo'd, as is a drill brush.

Also make sure you get a proper mask, as its a very bad thing to inhale.

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The battery isn't very old. I spoke to my brother and apparently he bought it just over a year before Ceri picked it up, so when you manage to get a belt on it it should be ok. I did manage to get it started.

Also one of the keys is out of sync, so can't be used to start the car. Apparently this is something that can only be fixed by a Mercedes dealership.

The roof moves back by pushing a little switch inside. It's electric, so you'll need to get some charge in the battery first. When it's all the way back I think you press the button again and it drops down at the back, then you can remove the two bars above the doors and they go into the rear hatch together for storage while you pose in your convertible.

There's also a secret lockable box under the drivers seat.

Can't think of anything else. They're weird little cars. Great, but weird.

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  • SmokinWaffle changed the title to 2005 Smart ForTwo Cabriolet - Mouldy, less broken, smelly & yellow

Thank you @outlaw118 and @Cento16v for the mould advice!

Cheers for the advice @Merryck (and the car)  - and @Timewaster they are a weird little thing!
 

So - I finally got myself a decent toolkit in the form of a Halfords Advanced 175PC set - £200 reduced from £255, then some other cheeky discounts from a friend got it down to £170 or so. Bargain. 

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So of course I had to christen it by attempting to fix something.

Jacked up, Wheel off (3 stud - a rare treat), irritating plastic plugs removed from plastic cover that hides the belts after much scuffed knuckles:

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The remains of the shredded belt!

Cleaned that all up, and after much swearing and poking (and finally getting the nut loosened on the alternator pivot thing):

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Hooray!
 

Although I'm also now just realising how much less adjusted the alternator is given the position of the old nut mark - should I adjust it back to where it used to be do you think? Probably should - feels tight but I guess it needs to be tighter? Thoughts? Not really sure how tight it needs to be and that seems like a big margin of error. Equally - it's been in the place it was before I loosened it for however many thousand miles - who am I to argue...now I take another look also it does look a bit slack on that bottom pulley.

Checked the fluids - oil is okay-ish - enough to be safe, coolant was maybe a smidge low but not really.

Bonus engine shot:

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Isn't it cute. It's basically a Mercedes SLK.

Also realised how much more access I have to the water pump pulley at the top - wish I'd known that when I was swearing and working blind with my arm in the wheel arch...

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Fitted the battery in the passenger footwell, not awkward or irritating at all.
 

Life! Radio lit up. Key in.....key symbol on dash, doesn't turn over. Quick google - turns out if this happens I need to hit the unlock key whilst the key is in the ignition. Hurrah! Now it shows that it's in neutral.

Tried to start it - one crank and it turned over half-ish then clicked. Not enough oomph in the battery - probably because I used it to help the 405 start before Ceri picked it up...blast.

I'll leave it on charge for the night - adjust the belt tomorrow to be tighter (still would appreciate opinions) - then give it another go.

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Bonus pictures from when it was picked up:

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The last journey Ceri's Kia made - taken minutes before it gave up the ghost in a rather large way.

And a great couple of pics of how it was shunted around the yard - not road legal but of course not needed and the Kia was broken so this was the only option!

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Fingers crossed tomorrow we should have a running smart car - might need to pop to get some fuel for it though. Once I've verified all is well and it's up to temp without exploding - I can start on the interior and getting it MOT'd.

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Sorry if I've missed it on the thread but have you checked the alternator spins freely? They can seize up very easily on these, even after standing for a short time. This results in a slow/no crank. A spanner or socket on the pulley nut and some WD40 or similar will hopefully get it turning again.

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6 hours ago, mrbenn said:

Sorry if I've missed it on the thread but have you checked the alternator spins freely? They can seize up very easily on these, even after standing for a short time. This results in a slow/no crank. A spanner or socket on the pulley nut and some WD40 or similar will hopefully get it turning again.

Oh how I wish I'd read this before I started it up...

Squealed like a stuck pig, alternator was seized. Turned it off. Belt was okay - if a little hot.

I then spent 2.5 hours attempting to get it unseized using....alternative methods:

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got it turning with a socket on it - but after a zillion turns it is it looser but still very far from being able to turn by hand. Even with several thousand litres of WD40 (well, the cheap equivilant), tapping it to loosen it, ect ect. Turns semi-freely 3/4 of the time, 1/4 is tougher - but very much not able to by hand.

Put the belt back on thinking a crank might free up what's left - still no luck when cranking it - looks like it'll either need a rebuild or a new one. Boo. I now also have ruined my hands turning a socket ten million times and hitting my hand on the floor 20% of those turns.

BUT it was a fun learning experience. Anyone know anywhere in South Yorkshire that rebuilds alternators? :-) 

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I don’t know anywhere in South Yorkshire but one of the best in the business is Mike Jordan at Just Alternators and Starter Motors (www.jasm.co.uk)

He is on the south coast so courier costs may put you off but if you have no reliable alternative you can drop it to yourself, I’d choose him. Turn around was pretty quick when I used him a few years ago. Like posted back the day after he got it. He does prefer that you arrange your own collection but that is pretty easy done. 

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16 hours ago, jamescarruthers said:

I don’t know anywhere in South Yorkshire but one of the best in the business is Mike Jordan at Just Alternators and Starter Motors (www.jasm.co.uk)

He is on the south coast so courier costs may put you off but if you have no reliable alternative you can drop it to yourself, I’d choose him. Turn around was pretty quick when I used him a few years ago. Like posted back the day after he got it. He does prefer that you arrange your own collection but that is pretty easy done. 

Appreciate the advice - £45 for the OEM one refurbed is more than fair to me. 

I've found a place locally (Chapman Auto Electrics for anyone interested) which seems to be well reviewed. I'll give them a bell at lunch, if not I will probs or arrange it with Jasm. I'm often down the south east coast ish anyhow. 

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  • 3 weeks later...
39 minutes ago, 124Cab said:

@SmokinWaffle have you made any progress with this little treat? I’ve been watching with much anticipation - so much so I’ll be collecting one of my own on Saturday! 

Hello! I haven't yet, been busy with work and its still on my drive with 3 wheels awaiting me getting the alternator out! It's very endearing though, so it will get done! 

 

Hopefully yours isn't also mouldy! 

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