Tales of a C3, a Goddess and some BMW's.

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

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Brigsygtt
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Post by Brigsygtt »

I removed the battery & tray to get an extra 2" sideways movement to get the bottom outlet of the rad under the aircon pipes, easier than removing them.

Just shows things wear with age & not miles though if its only done 34k!

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DickieG
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Post by DickieG »

Brigsygtt wrote:I removed the battery & tray to get an extra 2" sideways movement to get the bottom outlet of the rad under the aircon pipes, easier than removing them.
Thanks for that tip it worked a treat :D .

Well I managed to refit the radiator after having to also remove the intercooler just to get that last couple of mm of clearance. Re-fitting the spring hose clips proved to be so much of a challenge I gave up and replaced them with standard Jubilee clips after spending what must have been the best part of an hour trying to get the bottom clip over the collar on the radiator. It was when I went to fit the top hose spring clip that I discovered that there is not enough clearance in the clip to allow it to slip over the collar :evil: .

I've partially re-filled the cooling system just to allow me to start the engine to raise the rear suspension enough to get my trolley jack under the the rear subframe in order to fit a complete exhaust system. The reason I haven't taken it further is that I'm considering of whether its worthwhile adding one of Forte's cooling system products to help avoid the dreaded heater matrix failure, I've always kept the coolant changes up to date and used distilled water, I'll have a think overnight and make a decision.

I managed to get to ECP at Wembley before the footie supporters arrived for the cup final and collected a complete exhaust system, which I fitted this afternoon. Oh how I love fitting exhausts, rust and general debris dropping in your eyes whilst laid on your back undoing rusted nuts and bolts. The back box came off quite easily but getting the front section out from under the car proved a little tricky until I removed the spare wheel tray as the front section is in one piece and too long to slip over the bar that runs between each side of the rear subframe.

I've left the front of the car upon axle stands as I want to change the engine oil and filter one evening this week as they haven't been changed for three years, allbeit that the car has only done 2,000 miles in that time. Since new I've religiously changed the oil every 3,000 miles using fully synthetic oil so the engine should last for some time yet.

As for tweaking the fuel pump I'm not sure that I want to go that route to be honest as the car is still very original and is now little more than a toy/young classic car for me now. I only use it for special journeys as I'd like to keep it in its original condition. If nothing else its a good reminder for me as to how far diesel engines have progressed as the XUD TD was just about the pinnacle of diesel engines when the car was new :lol:

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CitroJim
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Post by CitroJim »

Good to see you won the battles in the end Richard :D

I hate exhausts too but would rather do them myself than let the likes of the local "Bodgeit & Scarper" outfits do the job. The fearful bodges I've seen some of those do make me shudder. I also tend to take wheels to them to have new tyres fitted after seeing them strip a hub tread where they had their rattle gun set to 2 million foot pounds :twisted: :twisted:

I'd have no hesitation in putting a bottle of Forte Stop Leak in the cooling system. I still have it running around the 2.1TD cooling system.

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DickieG
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Post by DickieG »

A useful day tinkering for me today, after having trouble finding a supplier for Forte' Radiator Stop Leak (none on eBay) I finally managed to find a track some down in Scotland which were delivered to me yesterday.

Armed with a bottle of stop leak and cooling system conditioner I topped up the cooling system on the VSX which allowed me to warm the engine sufficiently to drain the oil, change the filter then get her back onto her wheels. As she was running low on fuel I popped out to re-fuel her and give her an Italian tune up to with the intention of dislodging any residual airlocks in the cooling system. The drive proved quite interesting in that the performance of the engine appears to have improved which leads me to suspect that possibly the fuel in the tank (well over a year old) may have deteriorated over time, yes my HDi will easily show her a clean pair of heels but she was definitely quicker.

As the "Goddess" had been in hibernation since the turn of the year I pulled her out of the garage to give her a good spin around the block, I must say that she certainly turns heads. When I returned home I treated her leather seats to a good dose of Gliptone leather conditioner in order to soften the leather. I'm contemplating whether to get the interior recovered in leather but several other DS enthusiasts have told me to leave it original even though the top of the rear seat has some minor splits in it due to the strength of the sun in Southern France.

Hopefully the sun will pop its head out tomorrow morning as I'm hoping I'll be able to take a photo of my four Citroën's parked together for the first time.

Tomorrow I'm off to a committee meeting with the CCC to make arrangements for the DS rally in June, I'm looking forward to going to the rally in a DS for the first time.

RichardW
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Post by RichardW »

DickieG wrote:I finally managed to find a track some down in Scotland
I go nearly past the door on my way to / from work, if it's the place I'm thinking of :P
DickieG wrote:The drive proved quite interesting in that the performance of the engine appears to have improved
My experience of XUD9TES in Xantias is that they only give of their best when they are used, and used hard. Both of mine didn't really come on song till they had done 20k miles in my hands - and then I always thought the 90 BHP was much better than it ever had the right to be (provided you revved it!). The HDi 110, of course, is in a different league :lol:

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myglaren
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Post by myglaren »

[Off Topic]

Been driving my son's 306 1.9 D-Turbo this week, he has had my C5 on a mountain-biking trip to Wales.

It seemed to go fairly well and makes an ancouraging roar on hard acceleration, accompanied by some fairly impressive clouds of smoke :shock:

However, on resuming control of the C5 this morning I have to say that it leaves the Pug standing with much less theatricals and no smoke whatsoever - also far more comfortable and much better brakes - despite their heritage.

It is a better car than I give it credit for and needs a few days in another to underline it's strong points.
[/OT] with apologies. :)

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DickieG
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Post by DickieG »

As its quite rare for me to have all of my Citroën's at home at the same time, this morning I took the opportunity to take some photo's of them;

Image

Image

red_dwarfers
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Post by red_dwarfers »

:shock:

Wow!

Impressive!

You've got two garages! :lol:

Seriously, thats quite a fleet :wink:

Toby_HDi
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Post by Toby_HDi »

Brilliant pic.

I still can't get over how good looking that DS is. They are all extremely tidy cars though, having seen the HDi and the V6 in the flesh.

I like the plate on the VSX :D

I shall endeavour to have such a fleet at some point. :roll:

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DickieG
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Post by DickieG »

Thanks for the compliments chaps :D
red_dwarfers wrote:You've got two garages! :lol:
Just the one on the left unfortunately, although its quite wide which is just as well with everything I've got in it :roll: I dread the day when I move house, or should I say garage :lol:

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myglaren
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Post by myglaren »

That is impressive!

XAN71A is identical to the one I had, always liked the colour. No-one else did though.

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DickieG
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Post by DickieG »

myglaren wrote:XAN71A is identical to the one I had, always liked the colour. No-one else did though.
The VSX is the second version of gold/beige offered on a Xantia, the first was called Sable the VSX colour is Zephyr :?

The quality of the paint and bodywork/door fit on that car is much better than other Xantia's I have experience of from that era (comparing it to my old SX and my Dad's SX) so much so that I've always wondered whether Citroën put more effort into VSX models at the time.

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myglaren
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Post by myglaren »

Yes, mine was Sable, which always had me wondering as sable is very dark brown/black.

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DickieG
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Post by DickieG »

I haven't done very much in the way of spannering recently just the odd bit of tinkering really especially on the Goddess. The strange thing about DS's is that whilst there was a slot in the dash for a temperature gauge it was only offered as an optional extra which on my car despite being a genuine Pallas with several expensive options it didn't come with a gauge so I've spent some time tracking down a brand new one from France.

Whilst I had the instrument panel out I took the opportunity to replace the fascia panel with a spare one as it had the very common cracks around the bottom securing screws. The difficult part to that exercise was that the chrome rings around the dials in the replacement panel were suffering the effects of corrosion so I had to carry out a mix and match between the two fascia's which involved melting plastic securing tags to release the chrome rings then remelting the tags on the new fascia. Thankfully all went well and the new gauge is now in situ and wired up whilst I await the arrival of the sender unit from Brodie Engineering who are also supplying me with a new 123 Ignition system to replace the Bosch points triggered distributor.

The distributor on a DS EFi not only fires the ignition but is also used as the trigger for the fuel injection so any wear on it will have a noticeable effect on the smooth running of the engine, mine runs OK with just the odd flutter at idle but having extensively used a Crypton tuner on traditional points distributors I know all to well how they readily wear out on the shaft with the consequence of poor running due to unequal spacing between the triggering points.

Over the next few months I'm looking to find decent upholsterer to recover the leather interior in the car, so if anyone can recommend someone please let me know.

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DickieG
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Post by DickieG »

Its been a fair old while since I've updated this so I've got some catching up to do :oops: .

Starting with the DS I've now fitted the 123 distributor which has made quite a difference to the smooth running of the engine, as it now pulls much cleaner/smoother from low speeds so I'd definitely recommend a 123 system from first impressions.

Having fitted the temperature gauge you'd think that the sender unit would be a simple case of removing the blanking plug and fitting the new sender unit, well not quite :? as after 38 years of a steel bolt sitting within an aluminum water pump housing the bolt proved rather reluctant to move to the extent that I envisaged the bolt taking out the Helicoil thread with it so I entrusted the job to Brodie's if only the in the event of that happening they have the necessary tools to carry out the repair which they made a good job of whilst I took in the atmosphere of Willesden High Road :x

Steve, one of the mechanic's at Brodie's is a great guy, as dry as they come with a real sense of humour, he knows DS's inside out and gave me a good couple of tip's about rerouting the LHM return from the clutch re-engagement tool to avoid it becoming over pressurised which leads to it leaking over the exhaust manifold. Steve also pointed out that the new battery the previous owner had fitted in France was in fact incorrect for a DS as the terminal's are the wrong way round so added to my list of job's to do is a new battery, thankfully the one one the car will fit one of my Xantia's :wink:.

Whilst most of the leads running to the battery have been previously replaced, the positive lead running from the solenoid (located on the battery on a DS) to the starter had suffered over the passage of time to the extent that the plastic insulation would fall away if the lead was moved so I sourced a replacement lead from Darrin at http://www.citroenclassics.co.uk/ in Staines, another excellent source of DS information/spares/repairs, highly recommended :D

I mentioned recently that I'd rescued a Xantia TD estate from the jaw's of the crushers by a matter of minutes, well I'm pleased to say that following a fair old bit of work the car is now back on the road having passed an MOT. The previous owner had employed a "Citroen specialist" mechanic located somewhere in North London, well all I can say is that if I ever come face to face with him I will be having word's, serious word's :evil:

The car was condemned on the basis that the O/S/R suspension strut was leaking excessive fluid and would cost too much to repair after one attempt at securing the return hose had failed. What the mechanic failed to observe/mention is that the rod linking the strut to the suspension arm had snapped which in turn had caused the piston in the cylinder to fracture, hence the leak. Fitting a replacement cylinder and link rod sorted out that problem sufficiently that in combination with fitting a new accumulator to get an MOT pass once a new tyre was fitted.

One strange problem that had us going for some time was sorting out why the hazard lights would flash when the indicators were operated. Replacing the indicator stalk/relay/hazard switch made no difference but we established that a low state of charge from the battery made the fault more apparent so a new battery was fitted. However the problem re-appeared following a long trip up to Sheffield whereupon the new battery was discovered to be in a low state of charge again. The cause was traced to the alarm control box having excessive current drainage by removing fuse 17.

Just before passing the car onto me the previous owner payed out for "new brake's" front and rear, but quite how anyone could fit new pad's to the car is beyond me when the state of the disc's is considered, the rear caliper's are suffering from the common problem of corrosion between the caliper and suspension arm to the extent that the disc are rubbing against the caliper's [-X.

Today the new owner (Bob, a good friend from work) popped over to me to fit a new radiator as the old one had sprouted a leak from the top. Whilst I was midway through the job Jim popped over with his daughters to return my sphere pressure tester and to have a good natter. It was after Jim left when I became even more annoyed with this so called Citroën specialist mechanic as I tested the pressure within the sphere's on Bob's new steed to discover that the suspension sphere on the N/S/R strut wasn't actuallly a suspension sphere but an anti-sink one :shock: , no wonder Bob commented of the car feeling like a boat at the rear.

Last weekend I popped over to Jim's to take a look at the dismantled gearbox from his V6, wow quite a few parts there, I must commend Jim on his enthusiasm for such a project, with so many parts I'd be absolutely worried sick of leaving one bit out or fitting it the wrong way around then only discovering it once its all back in the car.

On Easter Monday I fitted a new timing belt, tensioner's, roller's and water pump to my HDi, my faithful old workhorse, what a great car, every goodie you need, as comfortable as they come but still does 50 mpg come what may. It was put to good use this morning doing a 200 mile round trip to collect another interior for Dawn's V6. I made the mistake of mentioning to her of a beige leather interior offered on eBay last week which I managed to secure for a very good price so she decided that she want's to change the colour of the interior of the V6 from black to beige :roll: so guess what I've been doing this afternoon/evening :roll: SWMBO's. its been a long day for me today!