Zel's Fleet Blog...Jag, Citroen, Mercedes, Sinclair & AC Model 70

Post pictures and stories about your cars both present and past. Also post up "blogs" on your restoration projects - the more pictures the better! Note: blog-type threads often get few replies, but are often read by many members, and provide interest and motivation to other enthusiasts so don't be disappointed if you don't get many replies.
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Luxobarge
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Location: Horne, Surreyshire

Re: Zel's Fleet Blog...Jag, Citroen, Mercedes, Sinclair & AC Model 70

#741 Post by Luxobarge » Wed Nov 11, 2020 8:41 am

Funny you should mention the HP 1100, I have two, one in operation and one as a potential spare, it is as you say bulletproof, although it does tend to give paper jams if there's only a small amount of fresh paper in it. This is my only printer, I don't need colour.
Some people are like Slinkies - they serve no useful purpose, but they still bring a smile to your face when you push them downstairs.

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog...Jag, Citroen, Mercedes, Sinclair & AC Model 70

#742 Post by Zelandeth » Wed Nov 11, 2020 8:29 pm

Luxobarge wrote:
Wed Nov 11, 2020 8:41 am
Funny you should mention the HP 1100, I have two, one in operation and one as a potential spare, it is as you say bulletproof, although it does tend to give paper jams if there's only a small amount of fresh paper in it. This is my only printer, I don't need colour.
I remember having that issue with mine many years ago, I seem to recall that a thorough clean of the pickup rollers *and* the paper separator pad pretty much eliminated the problem.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo. 96 Citroen Xantia Activa.

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog...Jag, Citroen, Mercedes, Sinclair & AC Model 70

#743 Post by Zelandeth » Thu Nov 12, 2020 11:48 pm

So our starting point today...

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With enough of the interior reassembled as to make the car reasonably drivable we went off to collect the tyres. Via an Esso fuel station to sample their Supreme+ super unleaded which I learned in the last week or two is in fact still ethanol free (despite the E5 label on the pump - an E0 label simply doesn't exist according to their website), so I'll be using that for the forseeable future. The very first thing I noticed though was that it actually smells like what I remember fuel smelling like back when I started driving, rather than the more gas-like smell it's taken on since the early 00s.

We go to the nominated fitting garage at the agreed time and they did indeed have my tyres...they absolutely couldn't fit me in to get them fitted today though. I'd had enough by that point though, and given my unease with using a garage I didn't know and not being allowed anywhere near my car while it was being worked on I just said "thanks" and stuffed the tyres in the passenger seat and headed for Formula 1 in Newport Pagnell to get them fitted.

Yep, I was right that my high speed evasive action before I'd been able to deploy cadence braking had resulted in a "slight flat spot" on the ancient, already knackered front tyres.

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That's quite plainly why the car wasn't driven again after that incident.

While the wheels were off I took the opportunity to take a look at the brakes...as F1 were absolutely fine with me using the time to look over the bits of the car that I wouldn't normally see without removing stuff.

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Pads don't have a huge amount of meat left on them but they're getting swapped out with the warped discs shortly anyway so I'm really not bothered about that. Nice to see the pipes all look in decent order though. Hoses are nice and supple with no perishing apparent.

Doesn't this look better!

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As I hadn't reassembled enough of the dash to have refitted the dash lighting rheostat I just headed directly home from the garage as I was critically lacking any dash lighting. However on the couple of miles it's fair to say that it's a huge understatement to call the car transformed. I was somewhat worried about front end alignment issues as the car has always pulled quite strongly to the left, even after I'd had the tracking done. It was about 8 degrees off when I got the car, which was probably why it wandered all over the road and had wrecked the tyres! It now tracks near as makes no odds absolutely perfectly straight. Think it pulls very slightly to the right on braking...but I'll worry about that if it's still an issue after the new discs and pads are in and I've cleaned up the brake pad slides. It's only very slight anyway. The horrendous vibration anywhere north of 50mph has completely gone, though there's still a very slight vibration through the car at exactly an indicated 70...1mph higher or lower and it vanishes. It's not through the steering wheel though so I'm suspecting rear wheel balance, especially as I'm pretty sure that the nearside rear has thrown a weight based on a witness mark on the rim. It's very slight though so not something I'd consider worrying about...being so slight could be almost anything in the driveline that's to blame as well.

The ride is vastly improved as well (unsurprisingly), the front end being nowhere near as crashy as it used to be. Noise levels seem reduced as well, though it's a bit hard to judge that as I've had to keep the windows open due to currently lacking half a ventilation system...and the exhaust isn't exactly quiet.

I need to make a couple of essential journeys tomorrow so if it's dry I'll try to get her out for a proper run to get a better feel for how the car is now behaving. Need to get her booked in for an MOT soonish too...Willing to take the car in now, I couldn't have shown my face in the testing station with those tyres in that shape though! Nor was I willing to drive it in that state - hence the car having been parked up for a while until I decided to go down the cheaper route to tide things over until we're in a better position to pick up the properly specification correct 215/70 R15 W tyres.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo. 96 Citroen Xantia Activa.

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog...Jag, Citroen, Mercedes, Sinclair & AC Model 70

#744 Post by Zelandeth » Sat Nov 14, 2020 11:53 pm

New tyres really have transformed the car. There's definitely still a bit of a vibration from the back somewhere. First thing I'll probably do is drop back by F1 and get the rear wheels balanced (and check while on the machine that neither of the wheels/tyres is out of round) as it's a cheap, low effort thing I'd like to get done anyway. I'm pretty sure one of them has thrown a weight at some point as there's a suspiciously clean rectangle which has clearly had a balance weight on in the relatively recent past. Given what a sloppy job was done of fitting the weights it wouldn't surprise me if the fitter never cleaned the rim properly before sticking it down.

Since I've put a little more air in the tyres the car seems to be pulling up in a perfectly straight line, with any apparent brake imbalance having vanished. So I'm guessing it was down the the pressures being a little mismatched rather than a braking issue, assuming it's not an intermittently sticky piston anyway.

Next job has got to be trying to get the HVAC system put back together... I'm going to have a shot at getting the low speed fans working first, I think I know where the speed switching relays are now so will check those first as the resistors themselves are apparently very reliable. Now knowing how the air temperature is sampled from the cabin it won't be able to work properly without the fan running...and in fact will probably be having air pulled through it backwards without the fan running with the windows open. So hot air from the heater box, making the system think the cabin is toasty warm when it's not. Hoping getting the blowers running on low as well as high will help that side of things.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo. 96 Citroen Xantia Activa.

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog...Jag, Citroen, Mercedes, Sinclair & AC Model 70

#745 Post by Zelandeth » Tue Nov 17, 2020 1:02 am

Back to battling with the world's most overcomplicated HVAC system in the world's most overcrowded cabin.

While I know the system has some issues, I'm reluctant to go doing stuff like pulling blowers and the whole system to bits until I've seen how it behaves with air actually going through the heater box rather than just all bleeding out behind the driver's side trim panels. It's obviously kind of hard to tell how the system is behaving when 50% of its air supply isn't connected properly. I'd ascertained that most of the fundamental bits of the system were at least somewhat functional.

Before I could really tell much however I had to get our old friend, the plenum back in place. This thing.

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After having made four attempts so far at getting this thing back in place (which looks deceptively simple) I'd pretty much come to the conclusion that I basically wasn't going to get it back in place without further work. The most obvious solution was to remove the blower motor, attach the plenum to that then wrestle the whole lot back into place as one. This would be easier if Jaguar hadn't in a typically Jaguar fashion attached half a dozen other things to the blower motor frame because it happened to be a flat(ish) surface.

Exhibit A: The right hand blower motor and (almost) everything attached to it.

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This wouldn't be quite so much of a headache if all of the fasteners were easy to get at, and if someone hadn't already stripped the heads of two of the screws out. I'd really rather not have to take that out if I don't have to as the moment you start getting involved with stripped screw heads you know you're likely in for a world of pain.

This was the point at which I basically had a critical patience failure with the plenum. At the end of the day it's just a glorified rubber hose, just one end of where it attaches to is horribly awkward to get at. So I set about mutilating the plenum. Plan 1 was to cut one slit in the base of it. This would allow me to get my hand inside the thing to assist in wrangling it into place.

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This improved my available dexterity by about 300% and more importantly allowed me to be able to feel when each corner was actually positioned properly. Sadly this still wasn't successful as it's such a tight fit on the blower. I kept getting three corners on, but the opposite one would always pop off every time I tried to get the last edge on. So I hacked the thing actually in two and made up a sleeve to rejoin them together.

Getting the "stub" onto the blower still took me a good twenty or thirty minutes because it is a ridiculously snug fit. There's no chance I was ever going to get that into place without either having made the plenum easier to handle or removing the blower. Once that was in it only took a few minutes to get the now separate lower section in, and five minutes to (using an adaptor collar from a generic cone air filter) join the two together. It ain't pretty! I'll be going back in tomorrow to cover the ally tape with duct tape tomorrow just to give it a bit more structural support...not that this thing can really go anywhere. There's a really snugly fitted collar between the two sections of pipe so it's not going anywhere...absolute bonus is that it doesn't seem to be leaking either. The duct tape will add an additional barrier against any electrical shorts given the proximity to the various bits of loom. I like using this ally tape though on any work like this because while it doesn't have much strength it does tend to produce a very good seal. It's also very flexible so tends to form a really good seal even on oddly shaped or uneven surfaces. It does need some protection over the top of it though.

Less said about this the better I think...but it's not leaking and it's buried behind a trim panel...so I'll take ease of service access.

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Turning the heater controls to demist, a huge collection of detritus was ejected from the windscreen demisters and centre vents (not been decent airflow for a few years then!) and almost immediately I had nice toasty air out of the vents. It's the first time I've ever actually felt any appreciable heat in the car...before "luke warm" is about the best I've ever had. I still think it's thinking the air sampled from in the car is warmer than it actually is as with it in normal heat mode it drops out after a few minutes - opening the doors though did get heat back on, and switching between demist and cooling shows that the actual hot/cold mixing side of things is working fine. Oh, we do actually have appreciable airflow through the centre vent now too. Not exactly hurricane force, but an order of magnitude better than it was.

So it seems the complete lack of heating performance was at least largely due to there simply being so little airflow actually through the heater matrix, as it was mostly exiting straight out of the right hand side of the heater box and bleeding out around the trim in the footwell.

I was going to take a test run to see if it would keep behaving itself once we were on the move...right up to the point at which I realised that I was lacking in functional windscreen wipers.

Bearing in mind that it had started pouring with rain about halfway through this work (in contrast to the forecast!) I decided that this was something to have a look at tomorrow. Hopefully I've just jostled the fusebox while I was messing around in the footwell.

I want to have a go through the fuse boxes anyway as it seems that there's been a completely random approach taken to fuse replacement in this car over the years. This for example should be a 5A.

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Hmm.

In addition, this dropped out the left hand fuse box when I pulled the cover off. This sort of thing instils confidence doesn't it!

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Hoping that was a "get me home, my headlights have failed" type fix. It wasn't fitted, just rattling around behind the lid (no doubt just waiting to short things out)...I do note there's one dodgy contact in that fuse box too, so may look into replacing it. At least it's a small fuse box.

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Note another incorrect fuse there...another 17A on the far left where it should be 10A.

Let's just hope this doesn't wind up opening up a new can of worms!
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo. 96 Citroen Xantia Activa.

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JPB
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog...Jag, Citroen, Mercedes, Sinclair & AC Model 70

#746 Post by JPB » Tue Nov 17, 2020 8:45 am

As the saying - which just popped into my otherwise unoccupied mind now - goes; there's no can of worms like an electrical can of worms!
That XJ-S clearly needs you if it's going to survive, keep up the good work please.
J
"Home is where you park it", so the saying goes. That may yet come true.. :oops:

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog...Jag, Citroen, Mercedes, Sinclair & AC Model 70

#747 Post by Zelandeth » Thu Nov 19, 2020 2:07 am

This morning I was expecting a package to arrive. What I wasn't expecting was a PALLET to arrive. It had this cocooned on top of it (we had to de-pallet it as that was too wide to fit through the door).

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We only nearly died twice getting it up the stairs, but sensibly decided to hold off fully unwrapping it until it was situated on the desk which is its new home.

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We had the scales to hand in the room so weighed it - 47.8Kg. Not as heavy as some of the early LaserJet models, but plenty heavy enough that you don't want to move it often!

The company we'd bought it from (who had also reconditioned it) had helpfully printed out a status page before wrapping it up. Nice touch. It's worth bearing in mind that this model was rated by HP for a duty cycle of up to 85,000 pages per month. Being from 2002 you'd tend to expect this to have pretty well earned its living by this point. Especially being the top end version with the duplexer fitted.

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Yes, that does indeed show a total page count of 4830. The term "barely run in" springs to mind. Kind of like finding an XUD Xantia with 30K on the clock.

The supplies were listed as having a minimum of 40% on any of the toners and a nearly new transfer belt and fuser. The consumables printout confirmed this was a bit pessimistic really.

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Can't complain at that...and this seemed to be borne out by the status readout when I turned the thing on.

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In a domestic setting that should last for ages.

In theory what should have then followed was plugging in a network cable, setting the network configuration to "auto" and calling it good. Of course that's nothing like what happened. Not least because of the fact that our router (seriously...I can't wait until we're rid of it) is beyond awful and the DHCP server will seemingly randomly take exception to certain devices and refuse to allocate them a valid IP address. No huge issue...setting up a handful of addresses manually isn't the end of the world.

Two and three quarter hours of swearing and bashing my head against several walls later I figured something out. You can set IP addresses manually...however the fluffing Sky router won't actually speak to anything that's manually configured above 192.168.0.20. So my having picked ...150 because there was nothing else on the network in that vicinity of course resulted in no network connectivity. Well...that's not actually strictly true. I could *see* the printer on the network, to the extent that my PC would spot it and set it up...but couldn't then establish communication to talk to it or print anything. I must have wasted over an hour chasing my tail here...until trying a low end address...and suddenly when I tried ...17 (I've got other devices on 16 and 18) it "Just Worked."

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Finally.

This then allowed me to get into the configuration page and prove that it does indeed have a crazy low page count.

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With it now working (and several test prints run through which came out lovely) I was happy enough to scoot it all the way back into its corner and to rebuild stuff around it.

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For the £120 I paid for it I'm well pleased. It seems to be barely used, has £150+ worth of transfer belt and fuser in, and is incredibly clean - which given it's kinda prominent on my desk is nice. Tucked away in the corner it doesn't actually take up much bigger a footprint than the Epson it's replaced despite obviously being far greater in actual volume.

Being from 2002, this must have been one of the last of HP's products before things really started to go downhill in the mid 00s. Still can't quite get my head around the concept that this is 18 years old.

Anyone want a 2017 Epson ET4550? Mine is now rather surplus to requirements as it's been rather upstaged.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo. 96 Citroen Xantia Activa.

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gazza82
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog...Jag, Citroen, Mercedes, Sinclair & AC Model 70

#748 Post by gazza82 » Thu Nov 19, 2020 12:44 pm

Sent you a message about the Epson!
"If you're driving on the edge ... you're leaving too much room!"

Retirement Project: '59 Austin A35 2-door with 1330cc Midget engine and many upgrades
Said goodbye: got '98 Alfa Romeo 156 2.0 TSpark to 210K miles before tin worm struck

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog...Jag, Citroen, Mercedes, Sinclair & AC Model 70

#749 Post by Zelandeth » Fri Nov 20, 2020 11:14 pm

Had the Jag out for a brief run yesterday. For the first time since I picked the car up, the heater was toasty warm the whole time...so much more pleasant.

Looks so much better with decent tyres on the front too.

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I know a couple of people have asked about how the Nankang tyres behave in the wet. My observation so far: they're solidly average. Nothing like the wet grip of the Uniroyal RainExpert line, but they're absolutely fine so long as you use a bit of common sense.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo. 96 Citroen Xantia Activa.

Dick
Posts: 596
Joined: Wed Sep 11, 2019 7:31 pm

Re: Zel's Fleet Blog...Jag, Citroen, Mercedes, Sinclair & AC Model 70

#750 Post by Dick » Mon Nov 23, 2020 7:49 pm

Pretty! Hijacking your thread here a bit.. my brother is restoring a y plate 5.3 like yours.. who do you recommend for parts please?

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