Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, BX, Jag XJ-S, 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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CitroJim
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by CitroJim »

Jealous at the parts prices Zel :)

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by Zelandeth »

CitroJim wrote:Jealous at the parts prices Zel :)
Thought you might be! Especially as those are factory parts, not eBay specials!

Putting that in perspective, the fuel hose I just picked up to sort the vacuum hoses was nearly £15 worth...

Edit: that's all the remaining vacuum hoses swapped out for actual fuel resistant hose, which hopefully won't perish again in five seconds. 80% of them will be relegated to the "box of bits" in a couple of weeks anyhow.

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van ordinaire
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by van ordinaire »

for silicon hoses, howabout siliconhoses.com? (sales@siliconhoses.com or 0845 838 5364) or you could try Europa, Demon Tweeks, Ratspeed or Car Builder Solutions.

re Lada colour coding, how do you reconcile that with their all black (regardless of rating) "ceramic" fuses?

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by Zelandeth »

van ordinaire wrote:for silicon hoses, howabout siliconhoses.com? (sales@siliconhoses.com or 0845 838 5364) or you could try Europa, Demon Tweeks, Ratspeed or Car Builder Solutions.

re Lada colour coding, how do you reconcile that with their all black (regardless of rating) "ceramic" fuses?
They're the exception that proves the rule! Had never noticed to be honest...

Thanks for the pointer on hose sourcing, will keep them in mind.

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van ordinaire
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by van ordinaire »

When I was running a Niva (the ultimate comromise: she wanted a Golf, I wanted a K5 Blazer!) I was torn between swapping in a handfull from the first (probably) French car I found in a yard & retaining originality.

Don't suppose you've ever considered this either: why did Fiat based Ladas use Renault switches?

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by Zelandeth »

So we're back home again.
IMG_20170310_130954.jpg
This time around, neither the Lada nor the Sinclair missed a beat during the entire journey.

Had a bit of spare time this evening though, so decided to take a look at the driver's door.

First thing I rediscovered was how much of an utter pain in the proverbial the window winders are to get off...I did eventually find where the circlip landed after about ten minutes.

As expected, the issue was that the spot welds holding the lower hinge assembly to the door frame had come away.
IMG_20170310_171256.jpg
Also spotted that most of the sound deadening had come away from the inside of the door (as usual).
IMG_20170310_171548.jpg
Unsurprising that the doors always rust out at the top, given that they never painted the inside of them! Suffice to say I'll be pulling the door cars off all of them and getting that sorted out...

Sorting this one out though isn't that hard. Usual solution is to just drill a couple of holes through the frame and bolt the bracket to the door frame. This does however involve taking the door off to do (as the B pillar is in the way of where the drill needs to be). Now, this is easy *if* the bolts holding the door on will undo - they have a Philip's screw head rather than a normal bolt - and it's a 50/50 gamble as to whether they unscrew or strip. Will give you one guess as to what five out of the six did.

I reckon my alternative approach will be to grab the angle grinder and cut myself an access hole so I can do the drilling from inside the door, shouldn't need to be that massive, and will be hidden behind the door card so I'm not going to worry too much about it.

If my welder was currently something vaguely resembling working I could weld it back together probably - but it's not!

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by elma »

Just had a big catch up, enjoyed your blog as usual Zel. Ladas an interesting machine much like Tango. I quite like the shape and look of it too.

Your husbands choice of next car is excellent, I went to look at a 406 V6 Coupe last week for a friend and I would definitely drive one myself. Unfortunately this one had a blown HG so wasn't purchased. My friends research has found that the body was designed by Pinafarina for Ferrari who refused it and that PSA snapped it up and redesigned the front. Not sure about the accuracy but I like the story.

Regarding wiring/gas competent persons mentioned a couple of pages ago I've seen a massive range of competence in qualified people. Some are just lazy and some genuinely don't know. The minimum pass mark for most of an electricians exams is 40% so it figures. Also a competent person (in Electrics anyway) can have up to four, or it might be 6, incompetent persons working under them which causes a lot of poor work. Thankfully they are getting rid of that rule soon which I'm happy about as a lot of these people do tasks they shouldn't very badly. Seen as you were changing like for like and there's no way of knowing you did should you sell the house I think you were best off doing it yourself. The sort of thing you found with your lighting isn't uncommon, the number of times I've found things that are deadly in the short time I've been doing electrics is literally shocking.

I also agree BG are a nightmare. They had to come and fix my parents boiler recently. I'd already had a look and found that either the pump or it's controlling thermostat were at fault. When the engineer turned up I told him so and he hated me telling him that much that he replaced everything except for those two components. I kept checking his work between visits and he was incapable of tightening down chock blocks so wires were coming loose. On the 3rd visit a senior engineer had to come and he said the same as me. Because of the incompetent guy my parents basically have a brand new boiler in an old case.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by van ordinaire »

What I disliked most about BG was not therelative in/competance of their fitters (technicians/) but the way the organisation worked: some years ago the annual service became a safety check which meant doing something with a laptop in the vicinity of the boiler & never going near a radiator & making it every 13,14 months so that over a period you actually paid for one more visit than they'd made.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by Zelandeth »

Probably just doing a combustion test on the boiler by the sounds of it to check the CO levels being produced. By the gas flow temperature in the flue with the right kit you can figure out an efficiency figure, which probably allows them to decide whether the boiler actually needs cleaning etc. Basically carrying out a visit to charge you to find out if they need to do anything by the sounds of it.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by Zelandeth »

So attacked the driver's door on the Lada again today.

Firstly had another bash at actually unbolting the door from the B pillar - someone has obviously had a go at this before as the screw heads are already somewhat messed up.
IMG_20170311_151414.jpg
There is enough to get purchase with a decent bit though it turned out, though without an impact driver, they ain't coming out.

...The fact that the screwdriver bit I was using basically exploded when I was hanging off it with the ratchet via a bit of exhaust pipe to use as a breaker bar tends to show how tight these suckers are.

Annoyed at failure there, I gave the back of the door inside a brush down with the wire brush, then slapped some sealant in there to stop the surface rust from taking hold.
IMG_20170311_151422.jpg
It's not pretty due to some of the old sound deadening still being attached, but I'm not too worried about that. It's inside the door so nobody can see it, rust proofing is far more of interest to me than being pretty!

Even with a flexible drive attachment on the drill and the door stay removed, I can't get in to drill through from the door post side.
IMG_20170311_151410.jpg
At this point I reckon I have two real options.

1. Resurrect my welder and weld the bracket back to the door frame. Access isn't actually too bad to do that to be honest. Cleaning up the surfaces first will be fiddly, and will probably end up being done with sandpaper and emery cloth taped to the end of a screwdriver, but it's doable. Getting the tip of the welding torch in to make the join shouldn't be too much of an issue. It won't be a *pretty* weld I fully accept, but it don't have to be. So long as it's strong enough and properly rust proofed.

2. Weld a nut onto the screws holding the door bracket on, allowing me to unscrew them properly.

I reckon that option 1 is by far the best as it will give me a "fit and forget" repair. Wheras if I bolt things together, it will never be as strong as it should be (...says the person who's come across this issue on two out of the previous three Ladas), as it will always be a pretty tiny little tab that the bolt will be holding. Will also be a pig to get it perfectly lined up trying to drill through two layers of metal with poor access.

Option 2 I reckon I may need to do long term though, as that door doesn't sit right - and the height is adjusted with shims behind the hinges there...and because I can't remove the bolts, I can't add/remove shims to make sure it sits straight! Though how much better it will be once the bottom hinge is actually *attached* to the door still remains to be seen.

The welder however is in need of a complete new torch and liner assembly...unfortunately I know absolutely nothing about how standard or not these things are between brands. The base unit itself, while ancient, is perfectly fine (and has been used relatively recently for a couple of experiments for which I needed many tens of amps of DC current!)...so probably can be dragged back into the land of the living.

I do wonder whether in the long run I'd really be better just picking up a new welder - let's face it, with my fleet it's a tool that I'm inevitably going to need in the future, and I really should learn how to use properly. This task shouldn't be an issue as both bits of metal involved are pretty beefy, it's welding to tinfoil body panels I still really need practice at. I do wonder whether a new welder (even a relatively inexpensive one) is likely to be easier to learn to drive properly than my ancient old fourteen-previous-owners tank.

Thoughts?

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by elma »

What welder do you currently have Zel?

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by Zelandeth »

Very valid question...I honestly can't remember! "Heavy and yellow" are the best I've got right now. Will check tomorrow. It's a pretty standard run of the mill MIG setup from what I recall, albeit about 30 years old...Though given the trend for tat made from recycled tinfoil from China to be sold these days, that may well count in its favour.

It's welded several of my cars back together in the hands of my former flatmate and his father before that. I ended up with it when he decided to upgrade to something more compact and portable when the torch on this eventually got to the stage where it wasn't bodgeable any further. Have always meant to sort it, just never got around to it. This might be the point where that finally happens.

EDIT: Between what I could remember of the model and Google, I've managed to confirm it's a Sureweld Monomig 101.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by elma »

Get a new torch Zel, if it's heavy and made in the USA you'll only buy something worse or really expensive.

Torches are a consumable anyway, they don't last forever.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by Zelandeth »

That's my thinking really. I was put off last time I tried to sort this (when I first got my VW T25 camper project) as I couldn't find anything local to me and I didn't really know what I was looking for online properly, so tended to wind up going around in circles.

I know a *little* more about welding than I did back then, but at a glance there do appear to be more options available in terms of parts availability online now.

Should still have plenty of wire (seem to recall being donated a massive spool that didn't fit onto the welder that replaced this one) and a couple of unopened bottles of shielding gas as well.

Will have a poke around tomorrow. Just have to admit to having buying stuff on the internet...I may be a grumpy old man (...Aged 31...) but I'd far rather drive out somewhere, pick it up and drive home again with it than faff about in front of a computer trying to figure out what I want and where to get it. That was still true back up north when that generally meant a minimum of an hour's driving...

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Pug 107, Saab 900, Lada Riva, Skoda Estelle & Sinclair C5

Post by elma »

It shouldn't be difficult for you Zel, I replaced the one in my old work and it only took about ten minutes on the internet to find one. I'm a keen amateur as far as welding goes so I'm not going to give you any advice that may be poor. I will say I love Esab torches though as they allow you to have gas on with weld off if you only pull the trigger lightly, for the purpose of not letting the end of a weld contaminate while it cools.