'Zeb' - (Not a Classic) Bloggy!

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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Paul240480
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'Zeb' - (Not a Classic) Bloggy!

#1 Post by Paul240480 » Mon Mar 21, 2011 6:21 pm

I've been wondering wether to add a blog about Zeb' here............. He is quite young at 15yrs, but I got to thinking that a Volvo 850 is an up and coming classic & one that bought about big changes in Volvo's image - stepping into FWD world being the biggest.

So Zeb' is my Volvo 850 2.5Ltr 20 valve Est (170hp) from 1996 (June):
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Zeb began life in the UK at LEX Volvo in Leeds:
Service History
Delivery Services then,
9359 miles
15913 miles
23897 miles
All at LEX
33866 miles -David Hinchcliffe Ltd Sheffield
44890 miles
54011 miles
64540 miles
72882 miles (Cambelt)
84382 miles
94562 miles
106910 miles
115270 miles
128170 miles
These last nine were all done at A.B.Gelder Auto's - a Volvo indie in Sheffield
135375, a home service by the keeper prior to me.

Now I bought Zeb sort of over the phone :o I'd been on the look-out for something to replace swmbo's 480 Turbo auto, which 1) Was giving me grief trying to keep it reliable & 2) we really needed a second doggy carrier for attending agility shows, to give us two dog friendly cars, just in case one happened to be off of the road.

I was planning on purchasing a 940, but Zeb popped up & having already owned a T5 Est for 3 years in the past I knew a little about these beasties.

So in Feb 09, I received a call from dad-in-law to say that a friend of my sis-in-law (keep up) in Derby was selling Zeb'. I phoned the seller & asked a few questions & for some pics:
Image
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These were a few of them.
Swmbo came home at lunch, saw the pics & was smitten - So another call to Ian & we agreed on a price of....................£850 - spooky that :lol: . He wanted £975, but the deal was struck so long as he could keep the 7 seat conversion boot seats to 'fleabay'. Result!

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Paul240480
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Re: 'Zeb' - (Not a Classic) Bloggy!

#2 Post by Paul240480 » Tue Mar 22, 2011 12:11 pm

The following week, swmbo dropped me off at Nantes airport from where I flew to East Mids to be collected by Dave my brother. The next day, Dave drove me over to Ians place where I first set eyes on Zeb'. I wasn't dissapointed, he looked in pretty good 'fettle'. The rear off-side disc was cruddy, pointing to a seized calliper. The exhaust pipe looked a little rusty, apart from that Zeb' looked good, mileage was now 138k. Dave & I went out for a little spin. Initially I did feel like it lacked a bit of welly, but I was remembering my old T5. Once I'd got my head around the fact that Zeb' is 55hp down on a standard T5 it all made sense! :roll:
After the test another good look around & Ian said, "Is it okay for you or do you want to leave it". I replied, "Well if I don't buy it I'm gonna be on shanks pony back to France tomo" :lol:
So I gave Ian a cheque (remember those?) & off I went with the log book, MOT etc. My French insurers had agreed to insure me on the UK plates on the understanding that the car would be re-registered in 6 weeks or so.
The next day I set off for my Aunties in Basingstoke, as I had booked in for tea :D Zeb soon settled in to a gentle purr at 70- ish & I began to enjoy. Despite being non- T5, I found he has ample grunt & I began to enjoy those 'long leggy' gears. I arrived in Basingstoke, just as Zeb was getting into his stride. Couple of hours there, then I joined the M3 for the final leg down to Portsmouth. It was rush hour, oh how I'd missed it NOT! 75mph nose to tail one minute, then hard on the brakes down to about 20 mph for a few hundred metres, then woooooooshhhh we're off again................. We don't really get that over here :D
At Pompey I dropped into Tesco's for some fuel & few goodies, then onto the ferry for a beer before kipping down for the night.

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Luxobarge
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Re: 'Zeb' - (Not a Classic) Bloggy!

#3 Post by Luxobarge » Tue Mar 22, 2011 12:57 pm

That looks a reet nice car that Paul, looking forward to more on this, as you go through the trials, traumas and triumphs of owning one.

As you know I've got a V70 T5, very similar to this car, and although it's thrown a wobbly this week by spewing out both oil and water from the (combined) radiator, necessitating a radiator change, I still love it to bits - great cars to drive and fantastically practical, I've only owned mine for a couple of months and it's already hauled huge amounts of "stuff" around. Oh, and it goes like stink too!

Keep up the good work! :D :D
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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Paul240480
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Re: 'Zeb' - (Not a Classic) Bloggy!

#4 Post by Paul240480 » Tue Mar 22, 2011 9:32 pm

Thanks LB, I'm a stalker on your 'pride & joy' thread :o :D

The next morning saw Zeb leaving the ferry at St Malo. A mere 90 odd miles to home. I chose to go my favorite route via Ploermel & Questembert. Not 'google maps' route, but slightly shorter & lots of excellent roads to drive along. Imagine blatting along the A32 in Hampshire, but without the traffic 8-) . Zeb was at home & I lapped it up!
After a short time (too short) I was home. No sooner had I pulled into our parking area, Elaine (swmbo) was in the drivers seat & gone! 10 minutes later she returned, smiling and said, "It's not a T5 but it is a good close second". Phew, Zeb was to be her daily after all ;) .

So now back home, no snags - it was time to get on with the re-registering process..............

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Luxobarge
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Re: 'Zeb' - (Not a Classic) Bloggy!

#5 Post by Luxobarge » Tue Mar 22, 2011 9:47 pm

Funny you should say that, my wife's daily is either her Morris Minor or her Saab 9-3 SE.

But if the Ovlov and the Saab are both in the drive and she needs to go out, she takes the Ovlov from choice.

And she says she "doesn't like big cars".... :roll:


They say size doesn't matter. It does - you should see my wife trying to park my Volvo..... :lol: :lol:
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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Re: 'Zeb' - (Not a Classic) Bloggy!

#6 Post by Paul240480 » Wed Mar 23, 2011 6:19 pm

Elaine still complains about me selling the T5 :roll: It was sold to fund removals to France & it paid for 'Tank' too :D

So over next few days, I popped into our local Prefecture to get the papers needed for re-registration. Then contacted Volvo France in Paris to get the 'Certificate of Conformity'. The helpful chap there confirmed that Zeb would be issued with a 'Letter of Conformity' due to the date of first reg being about a month prior to C of C's coming into existance. I just needed to send in a copy of my V5 (I'd had this put into my name at Dave's address) & 113€ :roll:

I then spent 3 or 4 days ringing around various scrap yards trying source some LHD spec' headlamps. I was not getting very far! Eventually one chap said he had an 850 with the lamps. I asked him about 3 times to confirm it a phase 2 model & each time he just said "yes yes yes". So I set off one afternoon, about 40 miles or so. On arrival he was expecting me & sent me out into the yard to look. I think you know exactly where this is going................ yes it was a phase 1 :twisted: I explained to the chap, but all he would say is, "Oui monsieur c'est une 850", which was quite true, followed by the good old 'gallic shrug' :lol: As miffed as I was I still giggled as I walked back to Zeb!

So I resigned myself to the fact that I was going to have to buy new. I'd done this with Tank, from a Volvo mainstealer here & they were around 350€ fitted :shock: I tried various online shops & finally, on recommandation I contacted Simon at Brookhouse Volvo. He really was helpful & said he could get me a set of Scan-Tech lamps from Sweden for £175 delivered :D Fabulous. The only thing was that the Scan-Techs are not motorised so you cannot lower or raise them electronically. Not something that concerned me really. One more job thing ticked off.

I decided to get the Contrôle Technique (MOT) done. Once this has been completed, even if the car fails, you can still get your Carte-Grise (Frenchy log book) & will be issued your French Number for the plates. Zeb went in & failed. The headlights, due to not conforming, but also due to cracked glass. Rear off side brake calliper seized & both rear tyres walls were too perished. Advisory on exhaust pipe being rusty. Not too bad I thought.

Armed with all the papers, I went back to the Prefecture where I paid the one off road tax of something like £180 (that is the road tax for as long as I keep him :D ) Then I dropped into a local motor factors & had the plates made up & fitted - they have to be pop-riveted by law here.

We get three months to rectify Contrôle Technique issues. So plenty of time for the head lights to arrive & to sort the brake & rear tyres............

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Re: 'Zeb' - (Not a Classic) Bloggy!

#7 Post by Paul240480 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 8:13 am

Next on the agenda was to get that seized calliper sorted. It had by now begun to 'squeal' on light braking. I jacked him up & removed the pads. The disc was quite tatty to put it mildly! The calliper was just dirty. It cleaned up well with some spray brake cleaner. Then I removed the brake fluid fill cap & put a plastic bag with a 'lakky-band' over the neck. Then I gently pressed the pedal to see if the pistons would move. I was surprised & quite chuffed to see that both had moved, all be it very slightly. So out with the copper-slip (I understand brake fluid is better for this method now :roll: ) & then I gently pressed the pistons back in & put the cap back on. I repeated this until I'd got the pistons out as far as I dared. I cleaned the copper-slip off as best as I could & gave the pistons a clean up with some light grade sand paper. Then another smaterring of copper-slip & pushed them home again.
I then fitted the pads, with a coat of copper-slip on their rears to stop the squealing. Once all was refitted I went for a spin, probably about 10 miles stopping regularly to have a look at the disc. Within a couple of miles, I could see that the disc was starting to clean up. Over the next couple of weeks it was about 80% gleaming, the remaing sections were pitted from the earlier neglect.
I made a mental note to order rear discs & pads before too long........... (in reality it was a year before I replaced them :oops:)

Another piccie is in order I feel :D
Image

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Re: 'Zeb' - (Not a Classic) Bloggy!

#8 Post by Paul240480 » Fri Mar 25, 2011 12:39 pm

We had a weekend away in Jersey booked - this was to attend The Jersey Agility Festival. I decided this would probably be a cheaper place to get the rear tyres replaced. Here the best I could do was around 113€ a corner. I got two for £140 fitted in Jersey :D
Shortly after returning Zeb's new headlights arrived. As the original lamps had passed on the beam settings, in order to get the new ones right I parked facing the house wall. I stuck a bit of gaffa-tape at 'main-beam' & 'dipped beam' where each beam showed on the wall.
Then removed the original lamps. I wrapped the electric plugs for the lamps motors with insulating tape & then fitted the new LHD (non motorised) lamps). Once securely in place I adjusted the beams to the same height as the originals. Not sure if this was correct due to the RHD v LHD issue.................

So now I was ready for the Contrôle Technique 're-visit'. Zeb went in, tyres good, brakes good, headlamps...............good :D Zeb passed so that was that for another two years.

With the purchase, travel costs re-registration & Contrôle Technique, I was up to about £1250 all in. A similar model LHD purchased here would be 2500€ - 3000€, so I was quids-in :D

Now I could slow down a little & as I'd done with 'Tank' (my 240) begin to replace wear & tear items in a sort of rolling resto' mode 8-)

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Re: 'Zeb' - (Not a Classic) Bloggy!

#9 Post by JPB » Fri Mar 25, 2011 12:45 pm

Paul240480 wrote:Jersey Agility Festival
Please tell us more about that.

I have a mental image already, but it's plain weird and I'm sure there's a far less sinister definition. ;)
John, Operating knackered old sheds as daily transport since 1981. :|

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Re: 'Zeb' - (Not a Classic) Bloggy!

#10 Post by Paul240480 » Fri Mar 25, 2011 4:15 pm

:D Jersey Agility Festival, a weekend of doggy agility held at the Caravaning & Camping Club at Beauviland (sp) on the island. A great friendly weekend competition, which also happens to have the best ever burger-van caterers on-site too :lol: :oops:

Team Clark at Jersey Vid 2010: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9aCV_EfSTU8

:D

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