Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

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

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 15 Jun 2019, 10:38

Making the clutch bleedable consisted of drilling and tapping a hole in the connector block on the slave cylinder. Not massively complicated, but I definitely don't have the necessary equipment on hand right now.

Getting the cap out with a grabby thing is indeed hindered that even with the aid of a mirror on a stick and torch I have so far been unable to find where it is hiding.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Gibbo2286 » 15 Jun 2019, 11:12

If there's no electrics to damage down there use a hose pipe to flush it out.

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 15 Jun 2019, 18:11

Gibbo2286 wrote:
15 Jun 2019, 11:12
If there's no electrics to damage down there use a hose pipe to flush it out.


Not a bad shout actually. Been a while since the engine bay was last cleaned anyway...

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by xantia_v6 » 15 Jun 2019, 18:22

For the clutch bleeder, you could get away with a self tapping screw, I think Jim used a fibre washer or similar under the head to perform the sealing function. Just drill the holes straight.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by RichardW » 15 Jun 2019, 21:16

It's a sealed system...if there's no fluid in it, then it went somewhere.... Question is, which bit has failed???

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Michel » 15 Jun 2019, 22:24

Hell Razor5543 wrote:
08 Jun 2019, 08:40
Zel, bullies will always be bullies, and when they find a 'suitable' target they will continue to 'assault' that target whenever they can, purely for their own gratification. Reporting them to the police (with all of the information you can provide) is probably the best thing you can do, with a change of phone number being a close second (I hope that you do NOT have to do this, but be prepared to).

However, please remember that you do have friends who give a damn about you. This forum certainly is somewhere you can talk freely and not be judged


My best friend from school, who I'm still in touch with is trans. John is now Jane... very successful too, financial director at a very large famous well-known company, pays his (her) ex-wife considerably more in maintenance than I earn in a month.

Workplace bullying led her to try and take her own life on Thursday. Thankfully someone got to her before it was too late and she's now safe and sound.

Bullying should never be tolerated in any shape or form. We are all simply human. That said, if I ever come face to face with those who put my friend in this position, I might be slightly tempted to give them a taste of their own medicine.

Also had bullying issues recently with my 9 year old son. That was stamped out well by the school once they were aware of it. Apparently they don't like parents getting involved in dealing with it any more...

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Michel » 15 Jun 2019, 22:37

Zelandeth wrote:
08 Jun 2019, 00:47

Somehow (I'm still not quite sure how), said bunch of idiots never actually got wind of the fact that I'm gay.


This reminds me of a guy I worked with until recently. He'd worked in the team I joined since... 1997 with mostly the same people and I joined in 2011. I invited him to my 40th in 2013 and he took me aside and whispered "would you mind if I brought a guest?".. No, of course not said I. "Would you be offended if it was a man?"..

In this day and age!

My response of "I'd be very surprised if it wasn't"... threw him completely. NO ONE there knew he was gay. No one! It took me about 5 minutes from starting in that team to work it out :D

After I saw you mention your husband, I twigged then, though I did confirm with Jim that you were indeed Male and not a woman with some very un-feminine interests!

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by daviemck2006 » 15 Jun 2019, 23:06

myglaren wrote:
15 Jun 2019, 10:17
Talk to Jim about the clutch - he cobbled together a bleedable one. Must have been for one of his other Xantias though.

That was on my one, S163LTR. As far as I know its still alive and well and on this forum.

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 16 Jun 2019, 01:02

I've checked with a bit of random pipe that I had laying around, and the rigid plastic line running to the Xantia clutch fluid reservoir is a snug fit inside 3/16" hose as attached to the spare reservoir I have laying around...so I'm pretty sure that my long term plan here is to relocate it to somewhere sensible. The gap between the air conditioning receiver and inner wing looks pretty much made to measure, the bolt which secures the air con liquid line should do perfectly to secure the bracket to.

That's a task for next week though when I've got the patience to deal with it. The suggestion has been made that it might be worthwhile to try blasting the back of the engine with a hose pipe to see if the cap might then be dislodged...Not a bad shout actually as the engine bay is due a clean anyhow.

It is indeed a sealed system notionally...but the reservoir contains about 30ml of fluid...it wouldn't take much loss at all to run it out. Being able to *see* how much fluid is in it will make figuring out if we've actually got a significant leak to find or not. If it's been leaking at the same rate since I got the car and has only just run low I'm not too bothered...but yes it definitely needs investigation and monitoring.


Last time I was out in the Invacar I got caught in a moderately heavy rain shower which did a really good job of demonstrating how laughably lacking the weatherproofing was. Especially around the windscreen...which is a pain as due to the driving position being quite far forward the water from there drips right on your knees. The main issue here being that the seals have both perished and shrunk. As a result of that the water seeps in between the glass and the seal, there doesn't seem to be much that actually gets in around between the seal and bodywork.

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The rear windscreen doesn't seem to be so bad - most likely due to the reverse rake of it keeping it mostly dry and any water that does get in tending to just run down the bulkhead. There was however a big gap where I assume there should be a plug at the end of the seal.

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This gap looks far bigger from inside.

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The long term solution of course will be to get a new set of seals. However I don't have those on hand currently and I'd like to be able to use the car this week given that I seem to have a lot of cars with gremlins this week...so I can see the Invacar getting a bit more use than it's been used to up to now. Being weatherproof is likely to make it rather more attractive to drive. So I'd like to do something quick.

Sikaflex to the rescue I think!

I got out some (decent) masking tape to keep the stuff where I wanted it, and set about giving the seals all a good coating to fill all the cracks in the rubber and about a millimetre overlap with the glass and the bodywork...so it should hopefully both keep the water out and the windows in.

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The windscreen used to have a gap similar to the one I pictured earlier on the rear one, but it was halfway up the offside of the screen - that's now covered up as well. So that should be one less ingress point.

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Likewise the rear windscreen is now gap-free.

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While I'm thinking about it, here's a better shot of the interior as it appears now I've got the freshly painted panel above the screen in place and the pillar trims also painted. Think it looks period appropriate and the black is a nice contrast to the light blue.

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Yes, there are some paint runs in there I need to get tidied up. The switches you can see sitting on the dash are these...

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These will be for the electric fan I intend to add to the heating system (demister switch seemed suitable for that, and this one will match those already on the dash), and in future to provide me with a low brake fluid warning light (the switch provides a test feature for the lamp itself). Haven't 100% decided exactly where I'll put them on the dash yet, but probably over by the handbrake most likely.

Masking tape was removed when the sealant was about 75% cured to leave a nice clean edge without leaving streamers of gooey sealant or tearing half of it off with the tape.

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Will attack it with the hose tomorrow if it's not raining and see what the results are like...Fingers crossed my knees will remain dry next time I have the car out in the rain.

The sealant itself can be removed easily from the paintwork so long as it's not fully set by using those wipes intended to go over a panel with immediately prior to painting. Also useful for getting it off your hand when you hadn't spotted there was a hole in your glove, so you ended up with a glove finger entirely full of sealant. Note to self: Use sturdier gloves next time...

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Gibbo2286 » 16 Jun 2019, 10:09

This stuff is good for sealing leaky windscreen rubbers although mine came in a can not a plastic pot.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/i/133055866419

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 17 Jun 2019, 01:38

Having done a bit of testing it does appear that both front and rear windscreens are now waterproof. Haven't actually subjected it to sustained rain yet, so we'll just have to see how it goes.

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Finally had a chance to do a bit more bodywork reconstruction this afternoon.

The foam based corner now looks like this.

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Obviously some serious sanding action needed, but definitely heading in the right direction now. Reckon I'll need to take a bit off the outer radius of the bumper, but I've kind of done that deliberately as it's far easier to take a bit extra off than to add extra material.

This stuff is *way* nicer to work with than what I was using before.

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Will see how it sands, but in terms of application it's streets ahead of the stuff I've been used before...it actually holds its shape when upside down which was really handy when forming the lip along the bottom of the body. This is definitely getting bought again in larger quantities as I get a feeling it's going to be a useful addition to the toolbox.

Have given the underneath of the service cover a skim over as well, hoping that will help strengthen it a little as it's suffered from being quite bendy so far due to the old damage.

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Covered over a lot of the pits in the top surface too...have to see how it looks after sanding.

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 17 Jun 2019, 22:56

As of this afternoon it feels like we're actually getting pretty close to the offside front corner being built up to a suitable standard to be ready for finishing.

The work from yesterday was extensively sanded back (I'll be finding dust for years) to help define the profile before laying down another layer of paste over it.

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The swadge line is still a little wobbly, and I've got a plan to tidy that up when doing the next stage of sanding. Likewise the radius needs to be cut back a bit further as it's still a bit too sharp a bend. Once that's done it will probably be a few coats of resin to toughen it up before throwing some paint at it.

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It's not perfect by any means, but I think will qualify as "passable" once finished up and painted with a bit of care. I still hope that at some point in the future I might be able to get a mould cast off a car with sound bodywork here to match the profile more precisely.

I've also started to build up the lower edge of the offside corner too. It doesn't need anywhere near as much work to get it to a usable state thankfully.

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Really wish I'd discovered this glass fibre loaded paste sooner as it's so much easier to use than the old school separate Matt and resin approach. Having done a bit of anecdotal testing shows it to be more than strong enough for this job.

Hopefully I'll get time to get it finished tomorrow and start throwing some paint at it.

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 18 Jun 2019, 20:03

The radius of that corner being quite a ways off was bugging me...so out with the grinder again.

At close of play today this is where we were.

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Still not perfect, but is close enough now that I think I can call it "good enough" given I started out with this. 

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I am going to be finding dust for months.

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(Yes I was wearing a dust mask).

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 20 Jun 2019, 23:07

I had a feeling this morning that this was going to be one of "those" days, and indeed I was correct. Spent the entire day running around all over Hell chasing my own tail. As such was limited to about twenty minutes in the garage while dinner was in the oven. 

This was however sufficient to move things along with the Invacar bodywork. The nearside corner was now showing roughly the correct profile following the work a couple of days ago, however the surface was still quite rough as the underlying foam had been revealed in a few areas. The resin there had ensured that it was structurally fine, but the finish was obviously going to need work before we could even start to think about paint.

To remedy this I managed to scrape just about enough filler out of the ancient tin I stumbled across the other day and slathered it on, trying to do as much as I could to ensure that it was worked into the surface to leave as few pockets of air as possible (the same was done for the slight void left around the crack just below the indicator). 

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Then once that had just started to harden I hit it with the sander.

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Will want a little bit more sanding before a resin layer is laid down over it, however I had to abandon things at that point as the timer telling me dinner had to come out the oven was beeping at me.

Not sure how much time I'll have for cars tomorrow, but if I have some I'll get that given a resin coat so it's solid, then the whole area will want another light skim of filler so it's vaguely smooth before I start throwing high build primer and top coat at it. 

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 22 Jun 2019, 02:54

I suspect that tomorrow is going to involve lots and lots and lots and lots of sanding.

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Even before sanding the rear valance is looking a lot smoother now... I'd forgotten how roughly I'd just slapped the filler on there originally!

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