After all that it was MOT time. Took her in with the intention of seeing what was going to fail, and it wasn't all bad. Ended up being ABS light, Droplinks and handbrake efficiency. We had an inkling that the ABS was the front sensors, garage reckoned it could be the ECU s**t itself. it was, thankfully, dead sensors. At £25 each they didn't break the bank either
the rear pads got done as well as the front, and just as well. Part of me thinks they're the originals!
We were then legit for another year
So as far as tidying the car up, there were a few things that were small but made it look really untidy.
First up was the rear lights.
they make it look a bit tidier from the back, although in this shot you can see the awful paint on the bootlid (common Xantia issue as it's plastic!) and the rear wiper which you can't tell is wrong but sits all funny due to the washer jet on the arm.
on that second note, a few quid lighter and I had a Valeo OE wiper heading my way.
after all this, it was just the dodgy doorcards to sort out
Will had a set that he was willing to sell so half an hour later I had them rattling around in the back of the car.
the big issue was the drivers doorcard I aquired was a little bit damaged. there was a small rip in the top vinyl and a few clips were broken. these didn't appear to be an issue until I fitted them and the drivers side flopped around opening and closing the door.
So it was time for a makeshift repair.
I quickly realised that the top section was held in place with plastic lugs that are melted down to hold it to the rest of the card. a hacksaw makes quick work and I come out with the top section of the old card (with one broken clip, I worked around this one as it's on the inner edge so see's little work. plus the plug in the door was missing due to it being damaged.)
The old card. Missus will moan at me keeping bits, they will have a use!
Generous usage of evostik rapid and some weight, and wait.
(on the above picture you'll note theres a bit of plastic that holds the cream plastic part of the armrest in place. this was broken on both, but theres a massive bolt that runs between them and holds it together)
after effecting that repair, I fitted the rest (with thankfully nothing broken!)
the last thing to do was swap out the broken speakers. Not sure whats happened but all four were goosed when I bought the car. Anything at a reasonable volume crackled.
Taking off the trim showed the extent of the damage.
I got hold of three speakers via the new doorcards, and #4 was generously donated by a Xsara in the scrapyard
Now I had working speakers the Radio I had fitted was really irritating me. It was my old Sony unit from the saxo, as the one that came in the car was pretty much gone, an ancient Alpine (and not even a good one). It has a lovely flap to cover it up when you're not using it, but this sets it back into the dash too far for any easy way of getting to the volume. It also meant the wheel controls didn't work.
So I aquired a factory radio (Blaupunkt 4030) just without a code. Furious googling later and the radio was in and working a treat.
Decided around this time to give the interior a good seeing too aswell.
Basically theres always been crud in and around the centre console. 20 years of accumulated crap doesn't seem good. So out it came
The wipes of choice, got a bulk load when tesco were flogging them for cheap!
theres some scuffing here where the seat rubs, theres no way of avoiding this unfortunately so i'll have to do what i can
in the shower it goes!
also cleaning out the footwell vents as they were rancid.
The height control surround got a good going over too.
While all that was drying I got to cleaning the ashtray and cig lighter socket.
A bit of wire wool later (don't worry, it was out of the car so no power!)
This is the mass of wire that runs under the console
Lots of spare plugs wrapped in decomposing foam...
After taking the radio out (again) I got down to checking the heater panel bulbs, as nothing lit up, cleaning as I went.
Unfortunately had none to hand, and they're soldered into the metal that sits in the little plastic bit, so not easy to substitute.
with them removed to track down, I set back to replacing the console. The vents were cleaner, but not perfect (ideally it'd be a thin piece of cloth in the vent to wipe it down but I had nothing!)
It's not perfect, but a lot cleaner (I had my screws and stuff sat in the coin tray, so completely forgot to clean it before I put it back!)
If the seats ever need to come back out I can get the buckles nice and clean. for the moment they're ok.
With all that done, thought I best check fluid levels. the coolant looks a bit brown (NOTE: A Sign of things to come
So flushing the system is on the list.
The aux belt has seen better days too. with the weather so hit and miss it's hard to get a day to fight with it. the shell here has a lot of crap stuck in the creases, as it gets no air or water near it. it was thick with old dirty spillages, gave it a quick wipe with a sponge many moons ago! theres minimal rust though, only really on the captive nuts.
Theres a tiny leak from the feed pipe here on the LHM pump (the rubber pipe).
I took the time to replace the clamps topside on the tank to see if it helps
So my next big jobs are to replace the Aux belt and see if a new clamp can stop the small leak.
Managed to get a good run out and came back with some suprising fuel results.
Sat at 56mph for pretty much 3 hours on the M6 to newcastle, and 2 hours back before the services. Works out at around 65mpg which is impressive given its only 40mpg by the book :clapping: I also didn't ache, just mentally exhausted from 7 hours of driving, can't fault the comfort at all and that's what i'm after, i'm sick of rattling my teeth out!
I do however have a pressing issue. The car only has 3 wheel bolts on the drivers side front, the last hole is completely stripped. A few weeks back when tinkering I felt one of the other three binding a bit on the way in, as though they were threading.
So, it needs a new hub. and while its apart, it would be silly not to replace the balljoint and trackrod. I also sourced some of the original longer headed bolts on ebay
Unfortunately time is against me here, as I literally have one day to get it swapped around due to work, and I know the balljoints usually put up a good fight
I've also started trying to source all the parts i'm after to "up-spec" the car, so to speak. The guy I got the doorcards from gave me a nudge and said he was scrapping the car soon and did I want anything before it went. So off I went and returned with some goodies.
The real cracker there is the CD changer. It actually turns out the radio I bought was from this car, and having discovered the car side of the changer cable under the seats it was daft not to leave it there. It also, contrary to what i've read given the age of them, works perfectly
The mirrors are completely the wrong colour but that was the intention. If the caps are buggered then I can replace them (loads on ebay), but finding he actual mirror assembly that fits the caps is harder, and without broken tabs or glass.
Given that I don't want to upset the doorcards i've not long since fitted, they're going to sit in the spares pile and get cleaned up and the caps sprayed, more than likely when the rest of the car gets sprayed (eventually) as they will finish the car off :y:
and the indicators, well, mine were cloudy and one had a crack, so futureproofing there (I've since fitted them!)
got around to replacing the stripped hub, all fairly simple stuff except for the balljoint being a massive arse. the nut was stuck hard and the splitter wouldn't hold it still so had to angle grind the nut off, no worries as i had a new one to replace it with.
until the bastard thing wouldn't come loose. ended up throwing in the towel and taking the hub to a friend and they got a huge chisel and (-expletive removed-) it out
then as always something had to go wrong and the abs sensor bolt suddently snapped when i was putting it back in. i think i didn't quite have the sensor flush to the hub so the bolt was trying to press that in too
for the time being until i can get the rest of the bolt out i've pulled the abs fuses as it would kick in at 5mph
Around christmas I managed to aquire a set of leather seats too.
They're not heated unfortunately and didn't come with any of the loom so I had to wire them in myself (the car didn't have any of the loom either, but has the wiring for the heated part oddly enough.) I managed to find a switched live for the seat relays from an unused plug near the gearstick
a few hours of lifting carpet and trim and the wires were laid.
they're not quite as comfy as the activa cloth (which are like sitting on a sofa they're so soft!) but the electrics make it so much nicer to adjust and they're easier to clean.