Monday, 27 September 2004

SOB : car goes up for sale on FCCUK

Right well , its all very sad but today my 20VT went up for sale on fccuk forum.


Lets hope somebody buys it !

Thursday, 23 September 2004

oh no! / possible car change looms.../ mpg update

Well the car runs great after the recent enormous spend.
Brakes are much better and Ive now started to 'push' them a bit more ....

Annoyingly I managed to bump into a very low bollard while parking at work this week !!!
What a muppet , a moments carelessness not thinking while reversing
Damage limited to some lower bumper scratches thankfully.

On a side note we are now considering a new mini cooper s !
My wife wants to drive again and thinks they are really cool :-)
So I guess we will get a test drive soon and take it from there......

21/09/04-44.05--51.28--11.28-----308---0.2------------27.3--------60805 -----OPTIMAX

wahey , now up to 27 MPG after the manifold replacement , and Im telling you thats good for the last week or so as Ive really been pushing the car hard. Had a training course which required some high speed back road testing LOL...
Lets just say I needed a 6th gear more than once ......

Re : Manifold failure..
For other coupe owners , I bought the car with a new style (ribbed) manifold already fitted.
This had failed at the base where all the ports join into one. Just a small hairline crack.
From the fccuk forum it appears that this is the common failure point for later style manifolds.
This has been replaced with the same style which should hopefully last at least a year.

While I remember the noise it made when cracked was a lot like a bearing / low oil pressure problem!!!
Symptoms were a loud tick under light load when cold. At idle is was quiet.
This would go away after 10 mins driving. But return after even a very short stop (even if oil was warm) , presumably because the exhaust cooled very quickly.

Thankfully the car is now silent (and no tappet noise either) when started from cold.


Tuesday, 14 September 2004

GoodNews/Bad News....

Yeah , well the good news is the cars fixed. The bad news is I'm destitute ....
Well what can I say?
After the MOT failure I considered many options.
However with a manifold needing done I decided that I would drive my car to Wigan Paul
(I reckon I have driven the car for at least 4months with a cracked manifold)
Not a 'quick' drive from Glasgow ! (4 hrs each way)
So down and back in one day (with my lovely wife shopping inbetween LOL)
I was very worried but hey its turned out great so Im pleased ...

Heres a breakdown of the final bill (or should I say open wallet surgery).
In fact its actually pretty reasonable for the work done to a good standard.
Plus knowing Paul has wide experience in coupes was a big reason for going.

Exhaust Manifold 293.86
Exhaust Manifold Gasket 10.32
Labour (replace manifold) (6hrs)180
Front discs drilled 130
Front brake pads 36.96
Rear discs 22.84
Rear pads 19.23
Labour (brakes)(3 hrs) 90
Top engine mount 16.25
Bottom engine mount 55.06
Bottom engine mount bracket 16.43
Labour(moutings)(1.5hrs) 45
Full Service 95
Pollen Filter 16.51
Sub Total 1027.46
VAT 179.8055
MOT 32
Total 1239.27

In summary
+ Great standard of work and confidence in knowing the job will be right
- Distance , Dont know if I should have got more off for FCCUK membership...

Would I do it again? YES (and probably for a clutch!)

It has however brought home the cost of running a coupe.Ive only had it for a year.
This recent cost alone averages at £100/month
Totting up other costs(insurance/petrol/tyres) thats at least another £100/month
So I need to earn over £200/month just to run this car..............!!!!!!
For now Im just gonna run the brakes in and enjoy no engine movement :-)
Car feels superb..........

TODO : Manifold photos

Thursday, 9 September 2004

tank runs dry...

Ok so yesterday was a bad day cos the car failed its MOT ...
But today I go to drive into work and the car misfires only 50 yrds down the road !!!!!!!!
Yep , you guessed it Id ran out of fuel.. I usually run it down quite low but the additional extra idleing time for the MOT mustve burned off a few quid!!! cos it was bone dry...
A long walk to the garage and Im back with 5 litres to pour into the tank...
turn the key and .... chug/chug/chug ...stall....WTF!!!!!!
Even manouever car into various positions in case the pickup isnt touching fuel....still no joy !!!!!!!
So I walk back down to a surprised garage attendant for another 5 litres LOL
Once thats in she fires up almost straight away and I drive into work .... go figure......
I ran it that dry that not even 5 ltrs was enough to reprime it....

Annoyed you bet...but its better than having to call a tow truck.

Next stop Wigan Pauls on Mon (hopefully)


Yep its that time of year again...

Kinda snuck up on me , so it was a last minute thing. Booked into local fiat dealer for an MOT.
Ok so I was taking a chance but it was the easiest way...
Over 8 hours later (!!!!) my car has failed on the following....
1) Rear brake discs corroded and pitted
2) Poor handbrake efficiency
3) Ineffective rear brake bias valve
4) High CO emissions fail due to misfire

Ok so not to bad and pretty much easy DIY stuff but in addition to this I knew the car needed

1) Exhaust manifold
2) Full service
3) New Front brakes also

So Ive bitten the bullet and booked the car into Wigan Pauls (James Twist Garage) , a trusted FCCUK garage.
Its a pain but hey its only 3 hrs each way (Glasgow to Warrington!)

Really wanted to wait for a custom manifold but the wait could go on forever so Im just gonna solve it now.