Xac's adventures with Cassy (and friends + wife)

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

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DickieG
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Post by DickieG » 03 Jul 2011, 23:46

Best hope he doesn't drop a tool, glug glug!!

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Xaccers
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Post by Xaccers » 04 Jul 2011, 00:04

Magnets and string :D

There's an idea! Drop some carp in there and go fishing when not working on cars.

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CitroJim
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Post by CitroJim » 04 Jul 2011, 05:46

Xac wrote:There's an idea! Drop some carp in there and go fishing when not working on cars.
I always wanted a pond :)

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Post by RichardW » 04 Jul 2011, 08:44

http://mech-mate.co.uk/index.html

The only trouble with these is stopping them floating if you live in an area of high water table :lol:

It should be possible these days just to bung in a big piece of 1000 gauge DPM before you cast the base / build the walls which should keep the water out. You'd need to be a bit careful when casting / building not to puncture the membrane, but it can't be that hard. Can it???

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Post by DickieG » 04 Jul 2011, 10:16

I always think of pits as quite limited in what they're useful for other than draining fluids and balancing an Activa, I can't honestly see the benefit to hassle factor. To fit an exhaust you generally need greater ground clearance, suspension work involves lifting the car up and what have you now got right in the middle where you'd like to place a trolley jack? A big hole! I think you're better off buying a decent trolley jack, axle stands and ramps or saving up for a proper lift if you have the room.

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Xaccers
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Post by Xaccers » 04 Jul 2011, 10:26

Fitting an exhaust using the ramps at finmere (which is basically an aboveground pit) is a doddle compared with jacks and axle stands.
I must dig out the ground from between the ramps at some point so we don't have to squat to use them.

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Post by Xaccers » 10 Jul 2011, 22:27

Jim and I took a trip to Finmere this evening and had Juliet up on the ramps.
After driving her for a couple of weeks, she's pretty much level so we decided not to touch that.
The other issue was teh rear staying high then with a clunk it would drop to above normal but be much softer.
I headed under the back to check the rear height linkages.
First thing I spotted was that the manual lever linkage was resting against the height corrector's arm, hence why she was staying high.
The clunk was the manual linkage being popped out of the square in the arm.
Jim dived under with an 8mm spanner and noticed that one of the bolts holding the height corrector was loose, so grabbed an 11mm spanner and tightened it up.
He then adjusted the rear's height and the ride is awesome!
So soft yet stable in corners :)

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CitroJim
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Post by CitroJim » 11 Jul 2011, 22:07

That's great news Xac :D

The Finmere ramps makes the job sooooooo easy, even if we did have to grub out a small tree before we could use them :lol:

Only one thing left to do now and that's to enjoy Juliet...

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Post by Xaccers » 11 Jul 2011, 23:04

She rides lovely now, although she feels like the back bottoms out under heavy acceleration if I do it too soon after starting :oops:

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Post by Xaccers » 15 Aug 2011, 10:36

Popped over to Jim's last night for a well needed catch up, and to give Cassy some TLC in preperation for her trip up North at the end of the month.
I fitted a new induction pipe as the old one had finally split, oil breather pipe and valve.

I'd checked the voltage at the dipped beam's bulbs recently, and it was just over 10V, so I bought a couple of relays to fit while I was in Maplins getting the stuff needed to rewire the blower mod using 50A wire.
Now due to her hydraulic pump leaking from the bell end, and it taking a while to find, her alternator is down on juice a bit, making the battery light glow slightly at night, and flash in time with the indicators/brake.
I removed the battery and pulled apart the fuse box.
Fed lighter wire through for the relay coil, and the 50A for the main feed.
With an inline 30A fuse, the feed was taken from the large fuse slots at the front of the fuse box, where there are two slots available (apparently used for the extreme winter pack stuff, and the electric aux heater).
From the relay, a length was taken to the bottom right access hole of the fuse box and a large yellow shunt crimped on.
Into this went a feed for each headlight unit.
On the battery side headlight connector, I snipped back the loom's sheath to expose more of the orange wire on the end.
The feed from the stalk I took to the relay coil, and and made up an earth to take to the main earth plate on the side by the battery tray.
I snipped back the loom sheath on the other headlight after removing the ECU box for access, snipped the orange wire and crimped on the longer of the two 50A wire feeds.
With the engine idling, rather than a drop of 2-3V, it was now only 0.5V and the lights are much whitter.
Driving home in the dark I noticed that the battery light was off unless I turned on the rear window heater :)

We'd checked how it had been done on Jim's Activa before this though, two new decent feeds had been taken through holes drilled into the access door of the headlight, connecting directly to the bulb and earth.
While this would have excluded any earth issues, or resistance in the original connector, it looked like it would make changing the bulb a bit more awkward.
Idealy, if a direct feed/earth was needed, then removing the headlight and carefully drilling through it's base near the back (then fitting gromets to be neat) would work best (as would having a fully functional alternator!)

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Post by Xaccers » 08 Oct 2011, 23:11

Spent today at Jim's giving Cassy some well deserved TLC.
The jobs that need doing are:
Cam belt
Heater matrix
O/S/R hub
Glow plugs

So we started with the matrix and the cambelt, yes, at the same time, how hardcore are we? ;)
I set about removing/releasing the induction pipes etc, ready for the hardest part of the job.
Hide behind the sofa kids! It's the dreaded bulkhead pipes :o
Jim tried, I tried, Jim tried again, I called on the power of Greyskull but they would not budge.
We even ran her until the fans kicked in and then revved hard to try and blow the pipes off and still they held firm.
So I resorted to slipping a bar behind the pipes and applied gentle continuous force.
Water flowed!
Success!
But no, lady luck was not with us, the elbow had cracked.
So I finished the job of breaking the pipes off the elbow. Jim had to tug hard on the remains with pliers to get them out.
Thankfully Jim had a spare set (this is a must really when tackling the matrix job) but they weren't from a Xantia, and had a bleed valve built in pointing straight up.
There was no way they could fit without removing the bleed valve, so while Jim set about trimming it off and preparing a bung, I got to work removing the steering column, instruments and centre console bits.
We needed some pipe connctors so headed off to motorserv while leaving some epoxy to set over the bung Jim made.
They do play some rubbish music in there, real boy racer stuff, not our scene at all. Maybe we should have suggested they tuned into Radio 4.
We headed back and had the yummy sandwiches Danielle had made for us, and the "omg! they're delicious" small cakes that she bought for us.
Having done the job more times than I had, we decided Jim would tackle the matrix and I'd finish the cambelt change.
One of the things I wanted to do was tweak the wastegate a bit more, and getting to it is pretty easy but access is slightly restricted by the large coolant pipe that runs past the belts.
I released the clamp on the pipe and removed it allowing coolant to flow directly into the waiting bowl underneath.
Or at least that was how it happened in my mind.
What actually happened was the pipe came off a lot easier than I expected and antifreeze sprayed everywhere.
After washing my face and flushing my eyes with clean water, I mopped up as much of the spillage as I could, laid down a load of blue paper towels and used one of Jim's foam mats to carry on.
I gave the wastegate grub screw three turns, lets hope it's not too many :devil:
The old belt showed no signs of wear and fitting the new one was a doddle.
Meanwhile Jim had managed to dig out the old matrix, which wasn't looking very happy, and gave it's box and the cabin a spring clean with his hoover.
By the end of the day the new matrix was in, but not connected up, and the belt was timed and tensioned.
So tomorrow it's a case of putting the dash back in, fitting the replacement pipes, fighting, I mean fitting the cam belt covers, topping up the coolant.
Then it's out with the old glow plugs, in with the new, wire up the cold advance, then onto the O/S/R hub.
Easy peasy.

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CitroJim
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Post by CitroJim » 09 Oct 2011, 06:53

It was a god day Xac :D Very enjoyed indeed...

After dropping you off I popped round to see my friends (new owner of Old V6) and called in just in time for dinner - result :D Then went shopping so it was quite late when I got home...

It's started off a bit wet this morning :( Still, the BEEB speak of white cloud for later so fingers crossed...

I've dreampt up a possible substitute elbow joint involving aluminium and my old faithful lathe.. Those joints are really becoming a worry now in matrix replacement jobs - it's maybe a good job that plenty of other PSA cars use the same style of joint for potential substitutes...

We'll see if we can finish today.. Same routine - I'll finish the dash and you do glowplugs and finish off the engine. Then the hub... More fun....

See you at 8:30 :D

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Post by Xaccers » 09 Oct 2011, 21:03

An excellent weekend and I am totally shattered!

Cassy now has a new heater matrix and cambelt :)
Despite turning the wastegate screw 3 times clockwise, the gauge is showing lower pressure, -10 off boost and a max of 6-8psi where as before off boost was at most -6 and on boost 13.
During the test drive she didn't seem down on power though.
We did knock the induction pipe off the turbo while manouvering it out the way to get to the heater matrix pipes, so I refitted that and made sure it was tight.
Also we re-routed and trimmed the boost pipes so they lie better, and I noticed the gauge had come out of the end of it's pipe quite a bit, so I'm going to have to look into it further.

I had to stop play at 1pm to get home and wash up so that Danielle and I could check out the Holiday Inn for our wedding reception next year.
We've had to postpone it twice so far due to elderly relatives suffering from terminal cancer, and we couldn't match up the original venue with our new wedding date.
Danielle being the bargain hunter that she is found a much better deal at the Holiday Inn, and I have to say I'm impressed!
It was after 4pm by the time I'd gotten back so Jim could pick me up, and in that time he'd generously carried on working on Cassy.
Refitting the engine mount the rubber ball thing split and leaked red oil, so I'll have to pick up a new one during the week.
It hasn't made any noticable difference to the car but I think it was on it's way out anyway.

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CitroJim
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Post by CitroJim » 09 Oct 2011, 21:48

Xac wrote:An excellent weekend and I am totally shattered!
That describes it well from my end as well Xac :lol: :lol:

Gosh, it was a bit of a battle. We replaced the elbow with one of unknown provenance I found at Stratford. Gawd knows what it came off but it had a plastic clip and a long extension pipe on top with a bleeder valve on the end. Because of that it wouldn't fit so I machined it off, turned up a small threaded plug on the lathe, tapped a hole in the elbow and expoxied it in...

It seemed a bit loose in the matrix sockets and to ensure the matrix bled we left the O rings off initially. It leaked well! O rings on I noted that it was still a bit sloppy and could move in and out a mm or so. However, it seems to seal Ok, touch wood...

I have a thought on why the matrix elbow was such a devil, expostulated here...

When the mount ruptured and spilt red oil I wondered what on earth it was! That it smelt like the air from an old tyre gave me the first clue. It went as I was doing up the crank bolt on a breaker bar. I lifted the engine on its mount and that was enough... Doesn't seem to have made much difference though...

We failed on the rear wheel bearing, not realising the hub nut is an enormous 40mm job :shock: I didn't have a big enough socket :roll:

Still, at least Xac has contributed a hub puller to the toolkit so when we get a 40mm socket the hub should be easy enough to pull off...

And when that's done, it'll be time to do a clutch... After the effort this weekend it might well seem like a walk in the park :D

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DickieG
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Post by DickieG » 09 Oct 2011, 21:56

CitroJim wrote:Still, at least Xac has contributed a hub puller to the toolkit so when we get a 40mm socket the hub should be easy enough to pull off...
If you need a puller with real grunt I have a hydraulic one.