Jump to content

Grogee's spannering (Puma, Maestro , Corsa & Avensis). MAESTRO CATASTROPHIC OMGHGF


grogee

Recommended Posts

A small window of time to get busy in the Maestro. I took it down to the local tyre fitters (Southam Tyres). I think they are pretty crooked but probably 'Normal' as far as fitters go. And they are walkable so I don't have a lot of choice. Anyway it was £30 for a wheel alignment; to their credit they managed to get the steering wheel straight too. Car feels much better. 

So much for my theory that it was toeing out too much, turns out it had too much toe in. Weirdly the roundabout squeal has gone, and it just feels much better to drive now. 

Treated it to the battery backup mentioned above. A case of crimping on some bullet connectors and hooking up the wiring. A short test showed it's maintained the clock time and radio settings, but the true test will be a prolonged sit in the lockup. 

20231004_123908.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Some bits for the Beamer today, fortunately GSF had one of their random sales on so these Drivetec bits were 'acceptable' price. I think the rear lower arm was £50ish and the TRE £20.

Had to order some brake shields too as the RH one was AWOL and the LH one is on life support. Annoyingly they're £18 each and made of tin foil. 

Fuck me the old TRE put up a fight. The car originates from Scotland so that may be why it was so rusted on. Firstly the jam nut wouldn't budge, I fired up the blowtorch and eventually got it moving 15° or so. Then worked it with some WD40 and gradually got it moving properly. 

Tried all sorts to remove the TRE but I just knew it was going to end up with the angry wheel. The problem is there's nothing to bite onto the track rod other than 15mm flats and my open ended spanner just slipped on them.

Bear in mind this is on the driveway, so I don't have the full 'heft' of someone under the car on a two post lift. 

Anyway I slit the TRE thinking I could wedge it open which sort of worked as then I could ram a socket over the remains and get the ugga-dugga on it, while the track rod was held with stilsons. 

Some damage to the thread as you can see but I'm telling myself it's not terminal. 

In contrast the rear lower arm was a walk in the park. 

Anyway all back together now. I have a bush for the LH front link still to do, along with the aforementioned brake shield of shonk.

Once that's away I'll be off up to Chorley (which is in The North, apparently) to collect a gearbox. It would be nice to think it could be all sewn up before November when driveway mechanicing becomes a battle between rain, cold and darkness. 

Oh, and it's got 2 new Khumo 'Ecsta' tyres on the back now. No* expense spared. Road test results: they are black and round, 14/10 would roll on them again. 

20231005_141537.jpg

20231005_141554.jpg

20231005_164418.jpg

20231005_164423.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • grogee changed the title to Grogee's spannering (Puma, Maestro, 5er & Corsa). BEAMER PALLIATIVE CARE

Today I jacked up the Maestro and investigated a funny noise it was making. I could hear a scraping noise as I was driving along so I assumed pads weren't being drawn away from discs. 

Stuck it in gear with the engine idling so I could actually see what was making the noise. Turned out to be the brake shield rubbing on the disc and I just had to lever it away to get enough clearance. 

Not quite sure how that happened but I did take them off during Operation Clutch to tidy them up and paint them. I don't remember bending them out of shape but I can't rule it out! Anyway all good now. 

With the weather being unseasonably nice, I'm taking the 'Stro to Fairford tomorrow to visit my stepdad. It's a nice drive with several pretty routes to choose from. Mrs Grogee is underwhelmed at the choice of wheels (to say the least) but she should be grateful at the chance to experience such a proud part of our motoring heritage. I'm sure* a four-hour round trip in it will win her over. 

Tom came out to help with the spannering but I think he must have nuzzled the sump because he's got a big greasy streak down his face now. 

Chef's kiss: @worldofceri's AS sticker on the rusty tailgate. 

20231007_140436.jpg

20231007_150411.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • grogee changed the title to Grogee's spannering (Puma, Maestro, 5er & Corsa). MAESTRO SCRAPING NOISE

Fuck's sake! You take one step forward and your car kicks you in the balls. 

Filled up the Maestro as its a lovely day and was hoping to drive to see stepdad. 

Just as we were leaving I noticed the familiar smell of petrol and sure enough it's dripping out under the front of the tank somewhere. Mrs Grogee is delighted because it means we can take her modern Corsa and she doesn't have to suffer 80s BL nonsense. 

Anyway I shoved a drip tray under (actually a carved out 40l old plastic oil can) and we've left it to think about what it's done while we go out for the day. 

Thinking about it, I'm not sure I've ever filled up this car, so there's every chance there's a crack/leak somewhere in the top half that I've never spotted. 

It never fucking ends, does it? 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Turns out it's my fault again for trying to make things better again

Further up the thread you'll see where I cut a new seal for the sender unit because the old one was thin and old and looked a bit useless. 

That's where it's leaking from. Strictly speaking I don't have to drop the tank but I probably will just because I need it on the bench to get a good look at it. I think I'll be applying some fuel-friendly sealant to it; any recommendations? 

20231008_185651.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Update: tank fixed. I made a new seal out of bicycle inner tube, which is famously resistant to petrol (it probably isn't).

Plus some random red RTV sealant that isn't fuel compatible I've since found out. 

Tested it by holding the tank on its front so that the fuel in there rested on the new seal and nothing came out.

I wonder if it'll last?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • grogee changed the title to Grogee's spannering (Puma, Maestro, 5er & Corsa). MAESTRO FUEL LEAK FIXED
2 hours ago, JMotor said:

What an ungrateful pile of Maestro! How dare it!

Bet those seals are long since NLA anyway.

Did find this stuff online. Wonder if it's worth making a seal from something similar if it needs another one?

https://www.camthorne.co.uk/product/viton-grade-a-rubber/

Thanks, I found some sealant that's 'fuel proof': https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/266442178667?mkcid=16&mkevt=1&mkrid=711-127632-2357-0&ssspo=bXFkoCCWTRW&sssrc=4429486&ssuid=2Z40wC2iSsq&var=&widget_ver=artemis&media=COPY

I'm hoping I don't have to do it again but it's not beyond the realms of possibility. Luckily I'm getting pretty good at removing and refitting the tank. 

When I removed the previous home-made seal I noticed it had reacted a bit with the fuel vapours and shrunk/gone hard. 

I speak from experience when I say that petrol can be pretty nasty stuff. Still got PTSD from getting a face full (and earful) of it a few months back. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • grogee changed the title to Grogee's spannering (Puma, Maestro, 5er & Corsa). 5er good money after bad

Today I've been tackling the front radius arms on the Beemer. They have a big bush at the front of the car and both mine have very obvious cracks in the bushes which Mr MoT will see and fail. 

I was quite pleased with my slitting saw grinder action, surgically removing the nut after the BJ destroyed two Torx bits. Not sure I could repeat that if I tried. 

Getting the bush out was predictably a bastard. Big cheater tube over the hydraulic press lever and it popped and chuffed its way out of the arm. 

Unfortunately fitting it's replacement proved impossible. The press simply won't shift it, I am wondering if there is something broken inside because even though I'd tightened the valve with an adjustable spanner, it's no longer moving the arbour bit - I can hear the fluid 'hissing' so it's failed inside somewhere OR there's a pressure relief valve inside it. You can see its pressed in but still has about an inch to go which I just can't shift. 

Had a go with the bench vice too but no dice. I could try heating it up but I think I'm calling time on this procedure so I've bitten the bullet and bought 2 new arms (£150). That's in addition to 2 bearings, a TRE and a rearward arm so the total spend on the front suspension is now up to £310. Bastarding thing. 

Like all good* motor factors, GSF is shut this afternoon and tomorrow so it'll be out of action until Monday at the earliest. 

Sometimes you're the fuckee, sometimes you're the fucker. 

20231014_123838.jpg

20231014_123909.jpg

20231014_130718.jpg

20231014_152728.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

38 minutes ago, Tepper said:

Probably a bit late now but when I was messing around with these bushes a heat gun made a good bit of difference, you can't use a blow torch on the ally but a hot air gun was enough to get things moving.

I did think about this but then I decided the ball joints on the other end weren't that great so it was better to replace the whole arm. I mean they were fine, no play to speak of, but they weren't nice and stiff like newer ones so chances are they'd be coming off again anyway. 

It's annoying because the motor factors is shut today, otherwise I could have got it fitted today. 

I do hope to not be fucking about with the front suspension again any time soon. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

New arms fitted to the 'Trigger's Broom' BMW. No pics but just imagine an oily underside with shiny new bits. The Maestro was pressed into service as a parts run car: GSF in Leamington had the arms for £80ish each so I 'click and collected'. 

It was a pleasure to drive the Maestro today. The engine seems a little happier so I'm wondering if that's down to using 98RON. It doesn't stumble as much on light throttle now. The gearbox is a joy; it's possible to select first with your left thumb while your palm rests on the passenger seat. 

Tomorrow I'm off to Chorley to get a gearbox for the Beamer. My mates' garage-with-the-two-poster is about 10 miles away so the Maestro will continue to see use to get me to/from there while I'm working on it. 

I worked out that tomorrow's trip to Chorley will cost me less than £30 in diesel using Mrs Grogee's Corsa, which is incredible for a 270-mile journey. 

Screenshot_20231016_165604_Maps.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Maestro came out briefly because the forecast was for no rain. So I left it on the drive overnight and it rained, of course. 

Anyway the jobs were minor: 1) fit the steelies for winter storage, and 2) repair the ns side repeater. This had parted company with its orange lens so it was just a bulb sticking out of the wing. 

I managed to get some pattern replacements for £not much but of course they didn't fit without some modification with a drill. Anyway all good so it's back to being 'legal' again.

I still have an ambition to take it to Wales for a lad's weekend in a couple of months. I mean it's Wales in November so it's likely to be wet, but if the temperature stays above freezing I might just avoid the salt. 

I've fitted the plastic wheel trims so it doesn't look quite so Autoshite. They are pretty scuffed up but serviceable. 

I managed to bag a NOS set of trims a while back for £40ish but ironically I don't want to put them on as I don't want to damage them... What a twat. 

Also installed yet more stickers: an Atlantic 252 one from @AnnoyingPentium I think, and a tweed beard Maestro Owners Club one.

On the one hand it's now a bit over-stickered but on the other hand you're not the boss of me so I can do what I want. 

20231026_135353.jpg

20231026_135359.jpg

20231026_135407.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • grogee changed the title to Grogee's spannering (Puma, Maestro, 5er & Corsa). MAESTRO ON WHEEEEEEEELTRIMS
36 minutes ago, Matty said:

Do you not fancy the mg graphics and red strakes on the lower doors @grogee? Ah go on now, you know you do! 

Not factory fit, at least on my vintage. I think they came in the later 'wave' of EFi that had body colour spoilers, spats etc. Possibly around the same time Turbo arrived but that had its own la-de-dah body kit. Weirdly it's the Metro I remember most with the big MG octagons on the lower body. 

ae490490adff4f695d8831b6d20b97cf_L.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Rightly or wrongly (it's wrongly) I've decided to take the Maestro to Wales next weekend. It's a 3 hour drive. I know it's a bit leaky on coolant so I'll bring plenty of spare water &  AF to top up. 

Are there any friendly shiters near Dolgellau in case I have catastrophic shite failure? I do have AA cover but a bolthole might be good if the worst happens. 

How do other shiters clean the undersides of their cars to make sure winter grot doesn't take hold? 

Forecast is wet-ish but not biblical so I think it'll probably just be mud that I have to contend with. 

Screenshot_20231111_152452_Maps.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 hours ago, Sunny Jim said:

There's others closer to Dolgellau (and hopefully you won't need any help anyway) but if you do get stuck and if there's any thing I can do I think you still have my number.

Pob lwc!

Many thanks Jim. I need to brush up on my Cymru. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

I haven't done owt for ages but today I retrieved the Maestro from its winter slumber and brought it to base for a session with the Cleveland Steamer (steam cleaner borrowed from @Cluffy).

Of course the battery was completely dead despite my battery saver contraption and I faffed about for ages jumping a 'good' battery onto the flat one which didn't work so I had to remove the dead one and replace with a good spare that I've luckily hoarded. 

The upholstery steam clean was inspired by Bangers & Cash. I saw an episode where Matthewson Sr gave his slightly dismissive schpiel about a MG Maestro that had come in, and he'd suggested a wet vac was the best thing for saggy cloth on seats. 

I'm too tight and lazy to hire a wet vac from Tesco so I figured a steam cleaner might be the next best thing. 

Truth be told the seat cloth isn't particularly saggy or dirty but I've had a 'must do something constructive' itch for a while now so I gave it a good seeing to. 

It's now drying* out in the sun* and after football (Argyle 2-0 Sunderland @ h/t) I'll drop it back to the council lockup. This time I'll disconnect the battery as I'm unlikely to be using it much in December.

No pics so have a shot of the brochure wot I bought off someone here but can't remember who. 

20230722_123113.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

BMW news: Centre rear brake light borked, so I've investigated replacements and found an Ali Express LED unit for £40 posted. 

In other 'good' news I've only just learned that the 5 Series Touring has an openable tailgate window, eg you don't have to open the whole tailgate. 

In entirely predictable news, I just went outside to try it and it doesn't work. 

I strongly suspect that in order to get at the brake light, I'll need to get the window bit open. There is a vid on the Tube for it which involves wrenching the inner trim off uncomfortably. 

Tl;dr: More fun and games coming up to keep the needy Beemer happy. 

Screenshot_20231126_142905_Chrome.jpg

20231126_112325.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, grogee said:

BMW news: Centre rear brake light borked, so I've investigated replacements and found an Ali Express LED unit for £40 posted. 

In other 'good' news I've only just learned that the 5 Series Touring has an openable tailgate window, eg you don't have to open the whole tailgate. 

In entirely predictable news, I just went outside to try it and it doesn't work. 

I strongly suspect that in order to get at the brake light, I'll need to get the window bit open. There is a vid on the Tube for it which involves wrenching the inner trim off uncomfortably. 

Tl;dr: More fun and games coming up to keep the needy Beemer happy. 

Screenshot_20231126_142905_Chrome.jpg

20231126_112325.jpg

With that window sticker you may have created the most desirable BMW in the western hemisphere 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

BMW news: Today I faffed about with the tailgate to access the centre brake light. Got there in the end thanks to a YT video showing me how to manually release the latch for the upper glass bit. Then the spoiler unbolts with the brake light attached to it. 

Then @Cluffy helped me lift the gearbox into the boot and I drove to my mates house who has a 2-post lift.

Not much progress to report other than draining the autobox fluid; Mrs Grogee arrived to give me a lift home shortly after I'd got it up in the air. 

My challenges will be with the exhaust which is supposed to come off to get to the propshaft. Although I may unhook it and rest it on something eg stepladder to give me enough room to get at the prop flange bolts. 

Also the heatshield bolts are rusted to fuck but meh, I was expecting that. 

I've got a used torque converter to go on as well. It has six coupling threads whereas the existing one has three but I think I'm going to chance it and hope for the best. At least the gearbox numbers match up. 

Also I need to invent a way of pumping fluid into the box - the Chinese pump I bought is dead as a dodo. 

20231201_172133.jpg

20231201_172043.jpg

20231201_172030.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • grogee changed the title to Grogee's spannering (Puma, Maestro, 5er & Corsa). OUT, DAMNED GEARBOX

Progress of a sort. Disassembly was hampered by shitty heatshield and exhaust mount rusty nuts but nothing that the spinning wheel of destruction couldn't cope with. 

I'm attempting to leave the exhaust attached - again, partly a rusty nuts thing (zorst to cat nuts) but also because it might stay somewhat sealed that way. It's an I6 not a V8 so the cat sits to one side of the box and don't look as though they'll impede progress. There is of course the risk of bending and breaking, yadda yadda. 

Also had much confusion trying to turn the propshaft with the box in neutral and the handbrake on... Bellend. 

I've bent up some of the heatshields good and proper because of the exhaust being (nearly) in position but it's that soft aluminium stuff that ought to bend back OK. 

The torque converter is mounted to the flex plate with just three bolts - one of which I dropped into the bellhousing, like the bellend I am. No matter, it's all coming off to do the crank seal, assuming it plays nicely. 

I think I'm going to lower the car so the box rests on a table while I take the last bolts out. Getting the new one back in is going to be a bit of a game I think. 

20231202_144408.jpg

20231202_162427.jpg

20231202_171937.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A chance YouTube video combined with a major mechanicing snag have made me rethink my approach. 

Firstly, I watched a video that stated the mechatronics ECU (solenoids + electronics) is coded to the car. So bolting the other gearbox on would most likely result in lots of red lights and no go. 

So having learned that nugget, I thought that instead I might transfer original ECU to new box. 

Then I started attacking the bellhousing bolts. Fuck this bolt and whoever did it up... I managed maybe two turns straining and using the breaker bar before I chewed the head up. I tried smashing another socket on but it just slipped again. Considered grinding the head off but space is really tight there, I can't get the grinder in and even if I could, the chances of grinding the wrong thing are very high. 

It definitely has been cross-threaded, it's not just a case of loosen then spin off. Question is - by whom? Done at the factory or by a different ape? 

Now, consider the situation: if I bolt everything back together, I have a working car with a slight gearbox judder. I could MoT it then sell it to WBAC and get enough money for another whip. 

If I continue down the 'box off' route I might get past the point of no return and have an immobile BMW stuck in my mate's garage. 

So Plan B is to change the seals in between the mechatronic unit and the gearbox itself. Another YouTube vid I watched said these seals get hard then leak and cause many different issues, so I stand a chance of curing the fault with this method. The cause might well be too-low pressure going to the lockup clutch, which would lead to the slip I'm experiencing. 

So I removed the filter pan, spilled loads of ATF on my mates garage floor, then carefully removed the mechatronics block, observing the bolt sequence. This gives access to the seals. 

Interestingly one of the seals I took off was hard as rock so this might well be causing issues. I've ordered some pattern replacement bits but they don't arrive until Thurs at the earliest so I'm twiddling thumbs for a few days. 

20231204_111427.jpg

20231204_132732.jpg

20231204_132735.jpg

Screenshot_20231204_080310_YouTube.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • grogee changed the title to Grogee's spannering (Puma, Maestro, 5er & Corsa). GEARBOX STUCK: ABORT MISSILE

Addendum: I think I mentioned I dropped one of the torque converter to flexplate bolts into the bellhousing.

As I reluctantly decided to start Plan B, I realised that there was no way the car was moving without retrieving that bolt. 

LUCKILY someone at BMW was having a good day when they designed the bellhousing. After half an hour of poking magnets down the inspection hole, I realised there were two tiny access holes on the bottom. I managed to jimmy the bolt along to one of these holes then wriggle it free. It only just came out which makes me think that's what the holes were there for!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 07/10/2023 at 15:32, grogee said:

. Mrs Grogee is underwhelmed at the choice of wheels (to say the least) but she should be grateful at the chance to experience such a proud part of our motoring heritage. I'm sure* a four-hour round trip in it will win her over. 

 

she is in no position to talk- she likes a corsa!🙄

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...