Today I mostly .....

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Zelandeth
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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Zelandeth » Tue Feb 25, 2020 10:49 pm

As noted a few posts back a few of the coolant lines on the Jag are showing signs of failure. The left hand top radiator hose in particular was ballooning quite alarmingly. While this is probably at least in part just due to old age, it felt like the system was maybe pressurising more than it should. I'd also spotted a couple of drips from the outer seal on the expansion cap.

I had a sneaking feeling that these would prove to be connected. This is because the expansion setup on the Jag is a bit strange (no surprise there...the whole coolant system is a bit strange), with the overflow tank buried inside the nearside front wing. It's totally inaccessible without removing the wheel arch liner...and you could be forgiven for not even knowing it's there. Through this tank is the only route for pressure in the system to vent. Fine...except for the fact that the line between it and the cooling system is a thin rubber hose which is bent through a tight 90 degree bend right after it disappears from view from the engine bay. As such this hose is very prone to kinking. The bottle itself is also a cause of trouble as of course being totally hidden from view it never gets cleaned, even if the cooling system gets serviced regularly (let's ignore the fact that Jaguar *recommended* that two tins of Barr's stop leak be added after each coolant flush for now!). So it tends to end up full of horrible organic slime.

Each enough to check though, just disconnect the hose from the header tank overflow line and see if you can blow through it. It should be easy to do, accompanied by a gurgling noise from the dip tube in the hidden tank. There shouldn't be any real resistance.

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Oh.

We had double that on there and still zero airflow.

Well that won't have been helping anything then!

Play was stopped at this point by marble sized hail. However I've cobbled together a temporary solution to allow me to drive the car locally for the next few days while minimising the risk of blowing coolant hoses.

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Have also wrapped some cable ties around the hoses which are bulging to hopefully help keep them together until the replacements arrive (a full set has been ordered). It's a horrible bodge...but sometimes that's unavoidable!

Any guesses on how many inches of solid mud I find in the bottom of the expansion tank when I get to it?
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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Neil Chowney » Wed Feb 26, 2020 7:58 pm

I suspect that it won't be mud but a whole new set of organic life forms........

What a crazy set up!

You can almost hear them in the factory...

"Roight, Noddy, the bloomin' V12 been shoved in but oive forgotten the header tank loike....."

"croipes Rupert, good job we've got those ruddy great front wings not doing anything...."
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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Andrew353w » Wed Feb 26, 2020 8:37 pm

I always seem to find strange organic life forms in the "difficult to access" (=impossible to remove without the assistance of a proctologist!) pollen filters and have more then once almost wanted to call the Natural History Museum... However, methinks your muddy swamp might be more suggestive of how life began on Earth many years ago. Can't wait to see the pictures of what you find.....
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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Zelandeth » Thu Feb 27, 2020 9:20 pm

Definitely need to look at tweaking the idle speed up a bit...450rpm is a little on the low side...book says 750.

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That might be a job for tomorrow.

Today's task was to see if we could restore sanity to the reversing lights. A quick search on Google revealed that the switch is on the gear selector assembly inside the car rather than outside...surprisingly sensible!

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It just screws into the side of the selector mechanism and there's no need to strip that down to remove it.

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It was very obviously gummed up, requiring the plunger to be manually pulled back out rather than snapping back out under spring pressure.

Turns out all it needed was a good clean and a dose of fresh lubricant. Ten minutes later everything was back together and the lights behaving as they should.

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Tiny little task in the grand scheme of things but nice to have it ticked off anyway.

Fuelled up again this morning...9.8MPG and £92!
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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Neil Chowney » Fri Feb 28, 2020 1:21 pm

Should have bought the HE version, I hear that can climb up to over 10..... :-)
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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Zelandeth » Sat Feb 29, 2020 12:03 am

This supposedly *IS* a HE car..though you do kinda have to wonder!

Had a look at the temporary expansion bottle today after a decent run. About 3/4 full (and I put a bit of coolant in the bottom of it to help prevent air being drawn in as things cool anyway), so doesn't look like I need to worry about it overflowing.

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The hoses also feel firm but not absolutely rock solid like they were, so it looks like the pressure is being managed correctly now. If the weather permits I'll try to get the inner wing metalwork off and strip out the proper expansion tank and its pipework to be cleaned at the weekend.

As fixing the reversing lights was deceptively easy, I'm sure this will be an utter pig of a job to make up for it...
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Current fleet: 96 Citroen Xantia Activa, 90 Mercedes 208D Autotrail Navajo, 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE, 85 Sinclair C5, 73 AC Model-70.

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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Zelandeth » Sun Mar 01, 2020 11:57 pm

Courtesy of an idiot in an Audi RS6 who decided that headlights are for loosers and that they're too important to give way to mere mortals on roundabouts I wound up with a bit of a cleanup operation to do. I wound up with most of the meal I had just picked up and two milkshakes on the floor.

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I had secured everything, but apparently not sufficiently to withstand full on evasive maneuveres.

On the plus side the main carpets in the Jag simply lift out. So getting those out wasn't a problem and they are now drying in my conservatory.

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The thing about mid brown carpets is that they can hide quite a bit of grime! While most of them weren't too bad (save for the not inconsiderable amount of milkshake!) the driver's side front one took quite a while to get clean water running off.

The carpeting on the sills however appears to be glued in place so cleaning that will require a bit more effort...seems like this might finally be the excuse I need to actually get around to picking up a wet vacuum cleaner. Would be useful to have around, not least because Autotrail felt it necessary to fit pale beige long pile carpet in the cab of the van...and it's filthy.
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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Neil Chowney » Tue Mar 03, 2020 5:48 pm

banana or vanilla?
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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by sch4463 » Tue Mar 03, 2020 8:10 pm

Took our new (63 plate) 1.5dci 4wd Dacia Duster out for its first proper test drive. So far so good, will be the wife's chariot. Finally a 4x4 with a mpg that should mean it might be a keeper. Baxters niva website reckons the new Niva will be based on the Duster. Makes sense to me. :D

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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Zelandeth » Wed Mar 04, 2020 2:18 am

Neil Chowney wrote:
Tue Mar 03, 2020 5:48 pm
banana or vanilla?
Coffee and salted caramel.

Five Guys shakes are fantastic. The burgers are pretty damned good too.
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Current fleet: 96 Citroen Xantia Activa, 90 Mercedes 208D Autotrail Navajo, 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE, 85 Sinclair C5, 73 AC Model-70.

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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Neil Chowney » Wed Mar 04, 2020 1:17 pm

[/quote]
Coffee and salted caramel.
[/quote]

Thats gotta smell fantastic, not sure i'd have bothered washing the carpets! :-)
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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Zelandeth » Wed Mar 04, 2020 10:17 pm

Pretty sure it wouldn't after a couple of weeks!

Still need to do something about the one sill (it's been sponged clean as far as I can manage so far) but the rest of the carpets were finally dry today and are now back in.

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Really need to get some leather dye on the steering wheel I think. As the rest of the interior is getting more tidy it's letting things down more!
LOZ: Oddball cars, lighting information, and anything else I remember to upload!
Current fleet: 96 Citroen Xantia Activa, 90 Mercedes 208D Autotrail Navajo, 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE, 85 Sinclair C5, 73 AC Model-70.

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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Zelandeth » Fri Mar 06, 2020 12:17 am

Was tipping it down again this afternoon yet again.

Is the windscreen still leaking?

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That will be a yes then.
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Current fleet: 96 Citroen Xantia Activa, 90 Mercedes 208D Autotrail Navajo, 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE, 85 Sinclair C5, 73 AC Model-70.

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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Zelandeth » Fri Mar 06, 2020 10:40 pm

Today thanks to a friend I had the opportunity and honour to have a shot of something really rather special.

Not often you come across things which make the interior of the XJ-S seem Spartan and the seats seem conservatively padded!

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Those seats are actually even more comfortable than they look.

I love the contrast with the Biturbo between the interior which is absolutely thoroughbred Italian luxury supercar, the soundtrack which matches...and the utterly understated exterior.

Excuse the crudely blanked out registration plates, it's a friend's car so I'd rather keep them covered - and I don't have a decent photo editor on my phone.

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The rear in particular is very anonymous, and leaves people looking around trying to figure out where the howling V8 is hiding!

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There are a lot of little details though which bely how special a car she is. The door handles to name one.

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She is a very Italian car. Only they can make a car feel like such a real living, breathing creature rather than just a machine. Plus they tend to produce cars where there is a hilarious blend of luxury and downright shonky. Such as the wing mirrors which are utterly incapable of staying where you point them behind the first bump. Oh, or the warning lights on the dash...which are comprehensive to say the least.

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...However they may as well not be there as they are all entirely hidden behind the top of the steering wheel when driving. Oh, and that Italian thing where half the gauges don't sit at zero. The Lada carried that over from its Fiat routes too.

It's probably nearly 20 years since I wqs last in a Biturbo and I had honestly forgotten what gorgeous cars they are. This sort of uber-luxureous performance car has started to appeal to me more as I've got older...I used to gloss over cars like these as unnecessary and pointless...however the high velocity squidgy leather sofa category is really growing on me.

When (if) I decide it's time to move on from the Jag I think one of these will definitely be high on the list to take that position in the fleet. Especially as it comfortably seats four and doesn't require you to descend to several inches below bedrock to climb onboard...which are two areas where the Jag does lose points. Don't get me wrong though, I'm not in any way shape or form thinking of moving her on any time soon given how I've meshed so well with the car...this is purely a thought experiment for the hypothetical fleet.

Here's why I love this guy's garage so much though...having dropped that off, I was then able to jump into this.

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Which is in my view every bit as interesting a car in its own way and as much fun to drive. Especially being a first generation AX she has the interior with the comedy ergonomics.

I can't think of any other car where I have to reach *around* part of the dash itself to get to the power window switches...

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The AX/late Visa/C15 dash however is almost timeless though isn't it?

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I thought it was a messy design when I first came across it but it's really grown on me and it seems quite charming to me these days.

Do wonder how many other models this ended up in...the Talbot Samba and the Umm four wheel drive immediately spring to mind...

Later on in the day I decided to set about de-fluffing the van. I'll be using it actually to sleep in for a couple of days this coming week so really wanted to reduce the volume of dog hair in there!

I've been considering picking up a carpet cleaner or wet vacuum cleaner this week. The cab of the van I think makes a very good case for it.

Can you see where the mat sits?

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Nevertheless, the living area has been effectively de-fuzzed.

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Just need to give the water system a flush through so it's ready for use (as it had been drained down and blown through with compressed air to eliminate any freezing risk over the winter).

Will be a good opportunity to test out the heating system in the real world and I'm quite looking forward to testing it out.
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Current fleet: 96 Citroen Xantia Activa, 90 Mercedes 208D Autotrail Navajo, 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE, 85 Sinclair C5, 73 AC Model-70.

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Re: Today I mostly .....

Post by Zelandeth » Mon Mar 09, 2020 1:35 am

There has been one area that the van has struggled a bit ever since I got it: Audio.

Having upgraded the drivers in the cab they were just about passable - though the dash cutouts only allow for 10cm drivers so there's only so much that we can do there.

In the back though we had bigger problems with these.

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Again they're only 10cm drivers...but the issue here isn't the diameter (it wouldn't be hard to widen the cutout) it's the depth. The roof panel is only about an inch and a bit behind there so any serious upgrade is likely to involve a bigger enclosure that will stand proud of the ceiling.

Had a bit of an epiphany this afternoon though and realised that there's absolutely nothing to say that the speakers need to stay in the ceiling. There's plenty of other places they can go where depth isn't a problem.

Grabbed a 5x7" speaker I had laying around and went to have a look.

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Nearside one can go here, helpfully it can actually hide below the floor in the wardrobe I believe.

Offside is a little more awkward, but here looks to be the best spot.

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It backs onto the side of the oven, but the outer skin of it barely gets warm so I'm not too worried about that. If depth is an issue there I can probably get away with using a little spacer without it being too obvious.

A 6x9" should work just as well as this in these locations and give us a bit more punch.

Have a plan to get things a bit beefier in the cab too. What I reckon I'm going to try is getting a decent set of drivers installed down here forward facing behind the seats in the end of the lockers...

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The important thing though is that I'd keep a pair of tweeters in the place of the current cab speakers to help keep a decent soundstage in the cab. Bass is relatively non-directional, it's the treble you need to place carefully as that's what will give you the stereo separation.

It's either this or in the front of the box under the seats, but those boxes are full of battery and it involves cutting metalwork with I'd rather avoid.

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I'll keep the original speakers in the back of the van, but what I'll do is hook those into the TV as they're absolutely perfectly serviceable for that sort of duty...just not providing music above an OM.601 with a straight through exhaust being worked hard!

That's been a bit of a fly in the ointment ever since I got it as I do like my music, but I really didn't know quite what to do about it as the original speaker placements left little room for improvement. Quite why moving them didn't occur to me until now I've no idea. Well the obvious answer is that I'm an idiot I think!

It's a low priority thing really in the grand scheme of things but will impact a lot on my enjoyment of it, especially on longer runs.

A sub is something that might join the party one day...I know what a difference it can make, and unlike in a car it's not like I'm struggling for anywhere to fit one without eating half the boot or anything.
LOZ: Oddball cars, lighting information, and anything else I remember to upload!
Current fleet: 96 Citroen Xantia Activa, 90 Mercedes 208D Autotrail Navajo, 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE, 85 Sinclair C5, 73 AC Model-70.

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