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Grogee's spannering (Puma & MG Maestro). French spaceship FTP'd


grogee

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Rear brake back on. 

It is, theoretically at least, driveable. 

I re-read my 'help' thread on the Maestro forum about non functioning indicators - the advice was to check hazard switch because they gum up/get dirty. Worked it a few times and sure enough the indicators work again! Result!

I dropped it off the stands and went for a sneaky (slightly illegal) drive up and down the bypass. That's as far as I've driven it now. 

Sitrep:

Good news

Engine is sweet. Well it's a bit ticky but that might be sticky tappet (does this have hydraulic tappers?).

Gearbox is sweet, good old Honda.

Clutch is heavy AF, but it didn't feel too bad once on the move. 

Pulls to the left a bit. 

Brakes stop but they are a bit shit. Will investigate upgrade (does Turbo use bigger discs and calipers?)

Bad news:

There's a nasty noise from the rear, something is scraping something else. I'm wondering if the brake I put back together is rubbing on the drum? Kinda looks ok though. 

I haven't fixed the exhaust blow yet. 

 

I celebrated by checking the lights are working: some of them were. After some fiddling and new bulbs most of them were but can't get fog lights to work. Gave up. 

Time's up though and we're in full moving house mode now. Ironically the temp accommodation is just down the road from Grumpy Tim's, which might make life a bit easier at some point but it will still be 'wintering' in my council lock-up. 

The one logistical problem is that Grumpy Tim said if and when he does the work, he wants F&R bumpers removed and fuel tank removed. Obviously then it's not driveable so I'd need to trailer it, but more of a problem is that I don't have anywhere to remove those bits, unless I ask my semi-employer.

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Nowt more spanner action, in fact today was tool transport time for which I borrowed this beauty. 

I do like driving a van, can't put my finger on it but it's just satisfying somehow. Master Grogee was co-pilot.

Anyway, tools out of cabinet into boxes -> boxes into van -> cabinet into van -> drive to semi employer's residence -> unload cabinet -> refill cabinet -> take boxes home. 

In amongst all this I managed to lock myself out of the house and had an uncomfortable 20 minutes waiting for @Cluffy to turn up with my spare key so I could empty my bladder. 

Was close to urinating on my own driveway, which would have been a nice parting gift to the neighbours.

Finally - just had to take a pic of the old gear gaiter. Hiding inside is the BL roundel. Every time I see it, it fills me with joy. Can't explain why, it's just a happy thing to see somehow. 

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11 hours ago, Matty said:

Can't wait to see this done @grogee. Can you not work bloody faster?? Missus can do the move for you 😆

Well. Phase 2 is bodywork, and that's down to Grumpy Tim. Let's see what sort of quote he comes back with. 

Phase 2.5 is finding a house with a garage and a drive so I can continue Works.

6 hours ago, High Jetter said:

Huh, MG Maestro? How fast you want it to go? :)

Medium, please. 

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Idly browsing eBay last night, as you do. Came across these rear arch panels for Maestro. Auction started at 99p, I messaged the seller to ask if he'd sell offside arch separately but he said he'd only sell as a pair. 

Anyway look what they're up to now... I hate parts rarity.

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Fucking cars! Took the Puma to Cov to visit the office today. Driving back I gave it a little boot in 2nd and noticed revs rise without road speed rising... Sure enough the clutch has chosen this moment to expire.

The good news is I have the parts - new clutch kit and Ford concentric slave. The bad news is this has happened just when I've lost access to my drive, garage and tools! Fuxache.

Dropped into Shaun the friendly garage and got a quote of £220/4 hours to change it. I'm sure that's perfectly reasonable (it would take me longer) but could do without a £220 bill so close to Xmas. He's advised changing crank seal at same time (which I would have done too) so I've ordered a Reinz part.

I can nurse it for a bit while driving, it's not too bad unless you boot it. So I should be able to manage until 22nd when it's booked in. 

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Blimey. Just had a call from the guy in Northants who did "Glyn the wheel guy"'s welding on his MG Maestro.

Price for sill patches, arch and roof repair £600! That's a blimmin bargain in my view, even though I expect "mission creep" as he gets going. 

Bad news is, it won't be until Feb. Not necessarily a problem as we'll probably still be in temp accommodation and the maestro safely in its council lock-up. But fun to have something to look forward to in the spring.

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Just been to see Grumpy Tim with @Cluffy. He's a fussy bugger, but knows his onions. Said the arches would be £500 per side and that doesn't include sills and roof! Then went on to say that the 'best thing' would be a full respray at £7000-8000.

Of course he's right, and he does a superb job, but I don't have £8k stashed for Maestro respray and if I did I'd have bought a good one. 

I think I'd rather give Northampton Man £1000 to sort all the bits I can see with a blow over. I know it won't last forever but it'll get me mobile and hopefully it'll look half respectable.

Oh, on the journey the nasty noise from the rear 'fixed' itself, I think it must have been handbrake cable because now the handbrake doesn't work at all. I think the drum has rubbed through the cable. Ah well, another job for next year.

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Maestro is now tucked away in its council lock-up.

Yesterday's driving did reveal some new and exciting problems. The exhaust is blowing: I knew that it wasn't sealed around downpipe to middle, but it's also got that "1 in 4" flatulent blow of a not-sealed exhaust manifold. I'll have to have a proper look in the spring, but I may try the double gasket trick which worked on my Puma. At least I know I can get the bolts out now and I put ceramic anti-seize on the nuts. 

Also that zizzing noise is quite noticeable. It's possibly alternator bearings which isn't serious, or oil pump which is. 

That's in addition to the handbrake I've mullered, but luckily cables are still cheap and plentiful. Unlike body panels, which are NLA.

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Oh, and an apology to Grumpy Tim. He actually offered me some of his garage space to work in, which I thought was nice, although with the caveat that it would only be when it wasn't 'too full'. Unfortunately it's not practical with my tools all over the place.

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  • 2 weeks later...

FACK! Farmed out the clutch job and provided parts. But as it turns out, the wrong parts. Or so it seems. Either that or faulty. Either way, a massive pain in the arse, and I've got to pay double labour. 

The crank seal I bought (Victor Reinz) is listed as same part number shown on Ford parts catalogue. 

But, he's bolted it all back together and it's now leaking from the crank seal. So - box has to come off again, flywheel off again and change seal again. For FUCK'S SAKE! (Pictured is my workings out for why I bought that seal.)

Of course garage asked where did I buy the parts (eBay of course, always eBay) and now they think I'm a clown.

Meanwhile I'm without a car so am having to drop Mrs Grogee at work in her Alfa then drop Master Grogee at school; traffic was biblical this morning and he was late for school.

They're going to try and get it done Friday but no guarantees, meanwhile the bill will be £500 odd instead of £240.

FACK!

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Apropos of nothing, have a pic of me in 1992 with my Mini 1275GT. I'm staying at my stepdad's house, and this pic is in his downstairs convenience.

First car, loved it, it was shit, etc. Actually it wasn't shit but it was a bit shonky.

Also, I weigh about twice as much today.

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@Cluffy and I went to Essex (a five hour round trip) to pick up these wheels this morning. 

I would say I treated him to this breakfast, but the place only took cash and so he had to put in a tenner towards it.

Crusty wheel will be going to my ex-tame wheel man for resto, along with the 3D print centre caps (to be sprayed in the same silver) if I ever order them. 

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1 hour ago, grogee said:

@Cluffy and I went to Essex (a five hour round trip) to pick up these wheels this morning. 

I would say I treated him to this breakfast, but the place only took cash and so he had to put in a tenner towards it.

Crusty wheel will be going to my ex-tame wheel man for resto, along with the 3D print centre caps (to be sprayed in the same silver) if I ever order them. 

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I’m still full. God knows how you’ll manage a work Xmas banquet this afternoon but full props to you!

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Sister Grogee had her car towed to a garage and has been quoted £679 for an alternator and battery.

Now this sounds ludicrous to me, even if I budget a generous £70 for battery, £100 for alternator and 2 hours labour.

But before I get all indignant I thought I'd get a second opinion from @sierraman and @RoverFolkUs:

2007(ish) Ford C-Max 1.6, it's a Mk1 but with the snazzy rear lights eg facelift.

I have a sneaking suspicion that their garage has been on the make for some time, so this might be the final straw. @djoptix what garage would you recommend in the Bristol environs, they're in St Wherbergs.

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1 hour ago, grogee said:

Sister Grogee had her car towed to a garage and has been quoted £679 for an alternator and battery.

Now this sounds ludicrous to me, even if I budget a generous £70 for battery, £100 for alternator and 2 hours labour.

But before I get all indignant I thought I'd get a second opinion from @sierraman and @RoverFolkUs:

2007(ish) Ford C-Max 1.6, it's a Mk1 but with the snazzy rear lights eg facelift.

I have a sneaking suspicion that their garage has been on the make for some time, so this might be the final straw. @djoptix what garage would you recommend in the Bristol environs, they're in St Wherbergs.

 

I’ll do it for £679 if you want 🤣

petrol is easy as fuck on those BUT you will need the tool for twin pulleys for stretch belt. No more than 1-2 hours labour, tool is £25 for a knock off one that is perfectly adequate but works on other stuff with twin pulley stretch belts. 

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Concur with Sierraman. Alternator is about £90 + vat trade on those. So let's say £120-150 + vat with a reasonable markup. I'd get it done in an hour, let's say max 2 hours reasonable. 

Alternator probably £300-350 all in absolute max if we say they pop a new belt on at the same time. 

You're looking at £120 for the battery fitted at a garage? £80 if you go to F1 Autocentres, other fast fit outfits available. 

Does it actually need replacing? Pretty uncommon for both to fail at the same time. 

Maybe the battery went flat due to a faulty alternator but that doesn't mean it's kippered. I've rescued many batteries with a nice slow charge. 

If the battery is kippered, the smart charge system may refuse to charge it if it's that bad. 

Really needs further diagnosis as they might be wasting her money by changing both

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£600 is way over the top for that job. Cut belt, undo PAS reservoir and bracket, three bolts 15mm iirc. Undo earth and connections etc, drop new unit in, bolt everything back together and then fit the tool to the water pump pulley, set it all in sequence, wind the belt on the refit a/c belt. Would definitely spaff £25 on the tool, can’t explain how much easier it makes the job, none of this shit with screwdrivers or levering the alternator off the wing or whatever. Make sure you get the correct belt, there are two types, the wrong one will NEVER fit whatever tool you use. I’ve got the Dayco part number written down somewhere in the workshop.

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Oh ok my reply stands then. Alternator is more of a £500 job on the 1.6 diesel DV6. It's a pain to access so 2-3 hours labour and the unit itself is about £200 + vat trade 

So yeah, £3-350 for the alternator. £120 for a battery? Absolute max I'd have thought. So it's basically £200 too rich. My prices are South East prices based on £70/ hour labour. I expect the further 'oop North or West you venture, the cheaper. 

Please ask them what brand alternator and battery they intend on fitting. Bosch/Yuasa/Exide Calcium is a must for a ford. If you hear the words "Starline" or "RTX" or the Alternator then advise your sister to spin on her heels, run. Then once she's done some running, run some more. 

I suspect because it's been towed in they've seen it as a crisis job that's unlikely to be driven away elsewhere so it's get it done there or go without 

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2 hours ago, grogee said:

Sister Grogee had her car towed to a garage and has been quoted £679 for an alternator and battery.

Now this sounds ludicrous to me, even if I budget a generous £70 for battery, £100 for alternator and 2 hours labour.

But before I get all indignant I thought I'd get a second opinion from @sierraman and @RoverFolkUs:

2007(ish) Ford C-Max 1.6, it's a Mk1 but with the snazzy rear lights eg facelift.

I have a sneaking suspicion that their garage has been on the make for some time, so this might be the final straw. @djoptix what garage would you recommend in the Bristol environs, they're in St Wherbergs.

 

Ah, just put two and two together, I'm going to look at their shower tomorrow!

I use Stoke Gifford garage, they're always busy though, but I've always been happy with their service. I imagine they would give her a quote if she rings them. Lee who runs it will probably come across as a bit grumpy but he's a good guy.

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24 minutes ago, djoptix said:

Ah, just put two and two together, I'm going to look at their shower tomorrow!

I use Stoke Gifford garage, they're always busy though, but I've always been happy with their service. I imagine they would give her a quote if she rings them. Lee who runs it will probably come across as a bit grumpy but he's a good guy.

Ah great, she'll look after you. She makes good tea

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56 minutes ago, RoverFolkUs said:

Oh ok my reply stands then. Alternator is more of a £500 job on the 1.6 diesel DV6. It's a pain to access so 2-3 hours labour and the unit itself is about £200 + vat trade 

So yeah, £3-350 for the alternator. £120 for a battery? Absolute max I'd have thought. So it's basically £200 too rich. My prices are South East prices based on £70/ hour labour. I expect the further 'oop North or West you venture, the cheaper. 

Please ask them what brand alternator and battery they intend on fitting. Bosch/Yuasa/Exide Calcium is a must for a ford. If you hear the words "Starline" or "RTX" or the Alternator then advise your sister to spin on her heels, run. Then once she's done some running, run some more. 

I suspect because it's been towed in they've seen it as a crisis job that's unlikely to be driven away elsewhere so it's get it done there or go without 

Yeah. Pay the money or faff about towing it elsewhere. Pretty naughty I think. 

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No updates on the fleet really. Puma is behaving itself with new clutch (and crank seal) installed. I did the cam and crank seals t'other end in the summer, so it ought to be oil tight.

Except it isn't, it's leaking slightly from (I think) the PAS pump, which I'm treating as a rust proofing measure.

Anyway it's been alright in this cold snap, I think the rear washer might be blocked although it might be frozen. I'm taking it to a detailer place (I know, two bucket wrong'un) on Thursday for some TLC and some sort of snake oil coating. It's bloody filthy and I can't wash it myself, so why not?

Today I went to Coalville to buy a door for the Maestro, nearside rear. £60 and it looks reasonably straight and un-rusty. Unfortunately it's red.

Fortunately I've spoken to my new bodybuddy 'Kevin'. His worksheet has grown to include doing the OSR arch as well as NSR arch (I can see it's bubbling through). So the total list now comprises:

Roof repair

Rear arches

Both sills

Spray repairs

Spray door

All for just* £1000. 

I managed to find a couple of sills made to order, I think from Norn Irn. But they're not coming until late Feb.

Managed to bag some Spax rear shocks for £22, I don't know if these will lower the car (I hope not). 

Meanwhile our house move continues at pace. We've found a place and offer accepted, just got off phone to Skipton (highly recommend them) and we're full steam ahead for purchase. The clock is ticking though, because if we complete before May 18th we get a nice fat rebate which will fund Mrs Grogee's "new" (used) car - so far, S-Max seems to be favourite.

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We booked a mobile valet bloke to come and do Mrs Grogee's Alfa today, but he cancelled due to the freezing weather. I don't blame him really but the need to wash her car was pressing - it was getting hard to use simply because it was so dirty. Crap lights, dirty boot handle, couldn't see through windows etc.

Anyway I used my loaf to think of an alternative. The local Shell car wash has been broken for weeks, so I had a look to see what delightful Daventry had to offer. Being a bit of an armpit, I figured there would likely be a hand car wash place. Sure enough, London Road provided and a group of very cold gentlemen set upon the Alfa for an hour. 

Inside and out was quoted at £25 but when I saw them individually scrubbing each floor mat, I decided a tip was in order.

It was so cold, they were trying to thaw out their water bowsers with a kettle of hot water!

An outstanding job in terrible conditions, hats off to them. Sure, it'll be dirty again soon, but it's much more pleasant to be in, and the lights work too.

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  • grogee changed the title to Grogee's spannering (Puma & MG Maestro). French spaceship FTP'd

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