Citrojim's Activa, 207 and Bike Tales

Tell us your ongoing tales and experiences with your French car here. Post pictures of your car here as well.

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Post by andmcit » 08 Jan 2009, 00:18

citrojim wrote:My Activa has not moved since Christmas Day so tonight, and having one
less passenger than usual, I took my Activa on the big "dad's taxi" run.
It's first run in 2009. Did I ever enjoy the drive. Having a few days away from the
Activa makes it all the better an experience of driving it :lol: They are great :D


Yes Jim, one of the real reasons I appear so fickle with the many cars I
have! It's like driving it new again which sometimes draws your attention
to issues you may have overlooked. :D

I've only driven the new s2 V6 purchase about 5 miles since I brought it
home New Years Eve, but certainly got a real buzz out of driving it and am
looking forward to giving a thorough point to point check on the weekend
- something else I do enjoy!

I needed to get my black A6 TVA MOT'd too and after the faff about with the
locking wheel bolts was finally able to change the front pads, secured the
outer OS CV boot and swapped the front Activa ram as it was soaked with
LHM but seemingly dry around the very vulnerable leak of return pipe so
I'm not sure what that's all about - can they leak through past the main
plastic bellows - is there any source or reference to recon/fix these!!!!?

New MOT in my hand, I've enjoyed driving it this week and strangely
(very fortunately!!) the horrid coolant issues and wet footwell have gone!
Yep, I don't believe things fix themselves either and whilst fearing the worst
with the matrix, at the time I was encountering water loss from the main
rad I can only put it down to a scuttle leak or a leak in the matrix that
responded well to K seal!!!

All the best,
Andrew
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Post by CitroJim » 09 Jan 2009, 09:23

Excellent news on your Activa Andrew :D K seal is FTW :D I'll natter about rams later...

Ahh, yesterday :twisted: Where do I start :roll: What a day. It did not start well. I went to fire up the 2.1 at 07:00 yesterday morning and the central locking did not respond on the pilp. Odd. Unlocked manually and the interior light was dim. Strange?

The Alarm was doing strange things too.

My battery was as flat as a pancake :twisted: :twisted: But why?

It had it's MOT the day before and it now seems there is a new item they must check. For whatever reason they turned on my heated seats. Quite why I have no clue unless they're now part of the MOT...

Now, when I wired them I was lazy and wired them straight to a live supply via a fuse so... Mr. MOT tester put them on, I never use them and so they stayed on all night. Result...

I am a silly-billy and must ignitions switch it :oops: :oops:

Still, after a charge of the battery, all was well :D

In fact, the forced disconnection iof the battery seems to have done some good in that it gave the engine ECU a good reset/clear.

More later, time to get stuck into work. I'm exceedingly busy :twisted:
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Post by jgra1 » 09 Jan 2009, 11:08

Jim can we get my heated seats to work :) ?


i have all the wires just a bit stuck....
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Post by CitroJim » 09 Jan 2009, 14:00

jgra1 wrote:Jim can we get my heated seats to work :) ?


You want to accidentially discharge your barttery as well then John :lol:

No worries, can do... The main problem is rigging an ignition-switched supply but soon I'll have that sorted as I MUST do it to prevent a reoccurrance of what happened yesterday :oops:

Mike, without the switches, it may be a small problem but they don't actually carry the full current, they just basically switch resistors that in turn allow the main controllers to set the temperature. It'll not be that difficult to recreate suitable substitute ones.

I'll dig out the circuit diagrams later..
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Post by Xaccers » 09 Jan 2009, 14:06

A fun with batteries there Jim!
At least you know why it went flat, Joan next door drove my other estate and flattened the battery regularly (no idea how), so I bought a new battery for Cassy, fitted her old one (about 3 years old) in Jenny and now Joan is regularly running that flat too!

Charged Jenny's old battery all day yesterday and fitted it last night (was showing 13v), and charged Cassy's old battery over night, so will see how it goes.
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Post by jgra1 » 09 Jan 2009, 18:05

Jim dont worry about me battery ;)

I have the rheostat/temp control things, and can see the minute voltage changes they put out.. but neither seat seems to do much when they're on...
somethings not connected or both heaters are kaputt..
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Post by CitroJim » 11 Jan 2009, 00:27

jgra1 wrote:somethings not connected or both heaters are kaputt..


So often that is the case John :( The elements break after a while and repairing them is very difficult as you'd have to remove the leather and that's a job I'd never want to take on lightly unless I had a scrap seat to practice on...

I've been busy down in the forum engine room today...

One subject I've been working on is how to restore a deleted user and bring all their posts back. That's been fun and in doing so, I've learned a lot about how a phpBB forum works. It's not as simple as it looks :roll:

I've developed some SQL scripts to partially automate the process and have been testing it very carefully on my test system and I won't attempt to do it on the real forum until I'm 100% sure it's not going to have any unforeseen consequences.

One thing that does go for ever is PMs. I could restore them but it's a lot of work. In investigating that aspect though, I can see how PMs could be archived off to some otehr format and also, how a person with posts spread across two user accounts could merge them into one so it's been a useful exercise :D

Whilst doing that, I've also been doing trial migrations of the forum to a test phpBB3 installation. Following Steve's hard work in tidying up the memberlists, the migrations ran very sweetly :lol:

I've also repaired a duff Lexia today. Nice to do a bit of hardware work inamongst all this software work...
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Post by CitroJim » 17 Jan 2009, 23:43

I was about to start this entry by typing my usual opening line.. "It's been a busy week..." so I won't even though it has :lol: Just accept from now on that it's been a busy week, it always is and will save me typing it each week!

Work has been mad this week. Again it always is so from now on, just take it as read each week. More typing saved!

As reported elseware, the financial side is now all up and running and the forum web server is all good again after I broke it. less said about that the better except to say two things: I won't do it again and Webfusion Technical Suppport are pretty good :D

After a week of mainly working behind the scenes on the forum and having precious little time to post, I'm pleased to say some oil (LHM actually) ended up under my fingernails today :D

Typically, as I turned by back on the forum for an afternoon, my Internet connection died and rendered the forums inaccessible :twisted: That after the internet link had been good for months on end. Sorry about that :oops:

On Thurday I received a call from my Pug 205 owning nephew to say his engine would not start again. Regular readers of this ramble will know a few weeks ago his diesel pump packed up due to some contaminated fuel. Seems it's happened again to the replacement pump he had fitted :roll: he's cracked off the injector unions and he sees no fuel coming through so it is the pump again :cry:

I have his old pump in bits across my bench and it's repairable so today, now it's warmed up, I've started rebuilding it for him. Honestly, until now it's just been too cold to do the job.

Paul (fatherjack) popped in to see me today. Paul was in the area working and we had made arrangements to have his strut tops replaced on his 1.9TD. It was a good day for it, dry, sunny and breezy but not too cold. The actual replacement was straightforward and a pleasure to do on Paul's early and very tidy VSX. We did it just in time though; on the nearside one daylight could be seen through it and it was distinctly "crispy" under the rubber as well as being distorted. Definitely not very far off letting go at all; caught just in time :wink:

One of the new tops was a "New Old Stock" one and the other a new-new one. They had differing gaiter rings on them so on one side it was necessary to replace the gaiter as well.

We ran the Lexia across Paul's Hydractive ECU and as expected, all the usual faults were recorded therein. All reset fine :D We also proved Paul's normal/sport switch was woring despite no bulb illumination. The bulb apepars to have gone but what a tricky job they are to replace :twisted: Any tips?

All in all a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon was spent :D

Paul and I also struck a deal on his poorly V6, the one with the duff gearbox. All being well, I collect it next weekend. If anyone is travelling between MK and Lincoln next weekend, let me know as a lift would be appreciated :wink:

I've been studying how the autobox works and I may finally have lost the plot here but I'm going to see if it is repairable. At any rate I'm going to find out why it died and have a jolly good go at fixing it.

The downside is that my 1.9TD will have to go to make room. Currently on loan, it'll be up for grabs in May - exactly four years after I bought it.

As soon as Paul left I had to make a mercy dash to B & Q to pick up a new central heating timer for SWMBO's house. She complained yesterday she had no heating but the hot water was OK. One side of the timer had packed up. I dashed to B & Q to get a replacement and caught them not far off closing time. I picked up one but in my rush and hurry I picked up the wrong type. I did not notice until I was wiring it in and by that time it was too late to go back and exchange it for the right sort :twisted: I did a bodge on the wiring and thought I'd done it but although the heating was OK, the hot water side was not and with four women in the house, that's the critical bit!!!

Still, all fixed now except I have to go back to B & Q again to get a refund on the wrong one :twisted:

My eldest daughter had a bit of a smash in her Honda Civic yesterday. She was turning right into a side-road when she got walloped in the side by a 4X4 driver turning right out of the same side-road. Claimed he didn't see her :roll: Happily he admitted liability at the scene and his insurance company (LV) has already swung into action. They're good but expensive. The 4X4 was brand new with only 220 miles on the clock :shock: makes a bit of a mockery of 4X4s having better visibility than a normal car though....

Nic was fine, a bit shocked but otherwise OK. The Civic looks to be a write-off as the B pillar is damaged. She's not worried as she was soon to trade it in for a Pug anyway. Saves her the trouble :lol:
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Post by fatherjack2002 » 18 Jan 2009, 01:40

A massive thank you again Jim , you made what was a major job look like a "walk in the park", but then again you have experience and a few strut replacements under your belt :D :D :D , i think that after watching ( and learning) i would attempt a strut top change myself in the future :P , but i hasten too ad that i would need a helper to re-locate the strut as that was a little on the akward and heavy side getting it back in place :shock: .
As Jim mentioned the tops were badly corroded to the point of seeing daylight thru one side :shock: :shock: , concidering i do approx 400-500 miles per week i don't think it would have been long before they speared the bonnet !!.

Jim i don't know if its the new strut tops , or re-setting the hydractive , or both , but the car now drives and feels 100% better, and it doesn't "limp" on full lock in foward or reverse now , so it may well have been the distorted N/S strut top that was causing that.

As Jim mentioned my ill V6 is now headed South, which is a relief as a " public spirited" ( a police phrase not mine :x ) neighbour reported my V6 as abandonded, which resulted in "police aware" stickers on it even though it has T&T :x :x, .

All in all i had a really enjoyable and educational day , it was good to put a face to a name, and if any other members i might meet are as friendly as Jim its no wonder the forum is a first class success..
Thanks again Paul.............................
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Post by red_dwarfers » 18 Jan 2009, 11:24

fatherjack2002 wrote:All in all i had a really enjoyable and educational day , it was good to put a face to a name, and if any other members i might meet are as friendly as Jim its no wonder the forum is a first class success..
Thanks again Paul.............................


Jim is a fantastic bloke, his workshop is like a mini Citroen specialist garage :lol: Of the three members I've met, they've all been brilliant chaps, theres something about the people that deliberately own Citroens :D

A V6, Activa and 2.1 TD :o That will be a picture!

How did you both go about getting the strut out of the way? Me and father ended up pulling out the NS driveshaft on our first attempt :oops: In the end we levered them out using an iron bar on the wishbone and subframe, much neater :lol:

EDIT: One last thing Fatherjack2002 - DRINK :lol:
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Post by CitroJim » 18 Jan 2009, 12:15

red_dwarfers wrote: theres something about the people that deliberately own Citroens :D


Indeed Kev, you are right there :D and you, Paul, confirm that is absolutely true. It really was a top day yesterday!

Come to more shows this year and you'll find ALL Citroen owners are like us. Just wait until you properly meet the BX Club members :lol:

fatherjack2002 wrote:Jim i don't know if its the new strut tops , or re-setting the hydractive , or both , but the car now drives and feels 100% better, and it doesn't "limp" on full lock in foward or reverse now , so it may well have been the distorted N/S strut top that was causing that.


That's brilliant Paul :D Excellent and makes doing the job all the more satisfying when a distinct difference can be felt in driving :D

I'd suspect a bit of both Paul. Certainly clearing the stored faults out of the Hydractive ECU makes a very tangible difference on an Activa so it follows that on a VSX it'll have a similar effect. No proof but it seems that when a sensor logs a fault, that sensor stops being taken into consideration and a default value is used until the fault is cleared. Ideally, a Hydractive ECU needs to be read and cleared on a regular basis. I take my Lexia along to shows and it's always there for anyone to have a quick diagnostic.

The bad strut top must have contributed to the "limping" and must have had some effect on steering gemoetry Paul. Just see how much the strut top flexes on full lock. It's quite staggering.

I'll take some pictures of the strut tops in a bit and post them up. Scary stuff! Your bonnet had such a lucky escape...

red_dwarfers wrote:How did you both go about getting the strut out of the way? Me and father ended up pulling out the NS driveshaft on our first attempt :oops: In the end we levered them out using an iron bar on the wishbone and subframe, much neater :lol:


Ahh, there's a small trick Kev :D Release the strut from the strut top taper and then push the strut piston down into the strut nearly as far as it will go and then a bit of downward pressure on the hub allows the top of the strut to just clear the bottom of the strut top. Remove the bump stop rubber to give a tad more clearance. Watch when pushing the strut piston down as a nice jet of LHM will spurt out of it and a little LHM goes a long way to making a big mess :twisted:

The trick to get the strut piston back up into the strut top is to carefully withdraw the piston as far as you can when it's under the strut top (difficult as lack of space and a very slippery piston!) and then either have an assistant lift the hub or jack up carefully on the disc edge and as the top of the piston comes into view looking down the hole in the strut, top, "grab" it will a ball-ended long Allen key and ease it up into place until enough threads are exposed to allow the nut to catch.
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Post by CitroJim » 18 Jan 2009, 17:37

Here are the pictures of Paul's old strut tops..

In this shot you can clearly see the hole and general deterioration...

Image

But look at this when viewed side-on. That distortion is not normal as witnessed by the other strut top in the background!

Image

So near to failing...

Looking at the second picture, those tow strut tops look like some bizarre space creatures that Dr. Who might do battle with. "Invasion of the Strut Tops - be very afraid"

Had a nice, quiet day today. Just catching up on odd jobs. I did give both cars a wash and here's proof... (It was too nice to say indoors today, house or garage!)

Image

It looks like my Activa has a big dirty mark on the rear wing but it's just a shadow. It was very hard to take a decent picture in the low, bright sun.
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Post by red_dwarfers » 24 Jan 2009, 18:18

Jim, just noticed a small change to your signature :D
I take it that the V6 is at home now then :wink:
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Post by CitroJim » 24 Jan 2009, 18:54

red_dwarfers wrote:Jim, just noticed a small change to your signature :D
I take it that the V6 is at home now then :wink:


She certainly is Kev :D Sitting patiently by the garage awaiting time and weather to get stuck in to it. Engine runs like a clock. We started her up this morning and no word of a lie, you can't hear her running; she purrs :D

The car is is pretty good nick too. she's a bit grubby from where she's been standing for a couple of months but it'll clean up a treat. There's a few incidential jobs like the blower ruunning permanantly, the heater matrix elbow and on unloading, an LHM leak has appeared from somewhere in the back. Apart from that, all is very tickitty-boo.

Brittannia Rescuse were fantastic and highly recommended :D They sent a mechanic out to see if a roadside repair could be done but the old boy took one look and said "Can't even see the ***** gearbox, let alone try to fix it.."

So she came home on the back of a Citroen Relay. Lovely vehicles those, very refined and fast too.. Relay and V6 on the back cruised a treat at 80!

As work progresses, I'll open a new blog dedicated to the V6...
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Post by CitroJim » 02 Feb 2009, 20:29

It's been a good week and a great weekend. Stories to tell on the 2.1TD, the V6 and my nephew's 205 :D The V6 story will be continued in my V6 Blog - Brief Encounter II, and the story of my Nephew's Lucas Diesel Pump antics will hopefully now be concluded in my Contaminated Diesel Pump Blog..

On Wednesday evening, during my regular big mid-week "Dads Taxi" run, my 2.1TD started to very slightly misfire on very light throttle openings when on the over-run; almost like a petrol engine with a very slight misfire. Very odd. I made a mental note to have a look into it at the next opportunity.

Before that opportunity came, I had a job to do in Southampton and for this, the 2.1TD made the run. The misfire was slightly apparant going down and got steadily more noticeable on the return leg. Under power it was fine, if maybe a little rougher than usual.

Whilst in Southampton I met up with David (ellevie) and we enjoyed an extremely good natter, a delicuous pub lunch (game pie) and a stroll across the Common in Sothampton. An absolutely great way to spend a couple of hours at lunchtime :D next tike I'm in Southampton David...

I set off and it all went horribly wrong on the A34 :twisted: There must have been an accident or something that closed the northbound carriageway totally. Luckily perhaps, I was near the head of the queue and after about 30 minutes the Police directed us onto a side-road and away from it. Jane, who lives in my Tom-Tom, very kindly navigated me through a collection of lanes back onto the A34 some miles beyond the snarl-up. In all, I lost about an hour so not bad at all...

As soon as I got home, after picking up the girls for the evening, I popped the Lexia on the 2.1 and did a full diagnostic of the pump and ECU. Nothing wrong apart from a lone Needle Lift Sensor error that cleared fine and all diagnostic tests and actuator tests then passed fine.

That "misfire" was still there though. So what was it? I scratched my head a bit and then it dawned on me. When was the fuel filter last changed? I never had in the 14 months I've had the car and I've done near-on 20K in that time.. Sunday I replaced the filter. It looked about a thousand years old and was practically black :oops: :oops:

Not surprisingly, things are much better with a new filter :lol: :lol: How bloody careless of me :oops: :(

Given the problem on the 2.1 and not knowing the cause then, I took my Activa to Somerset and back on Saturday. Deep joy :D I love driving the Activa and it performed wonderfully. It was a lovely dry day so it stayed clean but I did have to pass a gritter on the A34 late on Saturday night and it was like running through a sandstorm :roll: No damage but the front was covered in salt though :evil:
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