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

#1051 Post by Zelandeth » Sun Oct 24, 2021 8:32 pm

Cleaned up the area immediately around the SLS hydraulic reservoir, hopefully now the hose isn't sweating it will stay dry now.

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Somewhere that *wasn't* dry I spotted while walking past the car when taking the dog out for a walk earlier was the offside rear corner.

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I was initially slightly concerned that might be fuel (I know the tank does leak when absolutely full), but it turned out to be water.

Looking down into the area where the jack etc is stowed showed the source.

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There was about 4" of standing water down there. Not screenwash either, so the rear washer bottle isn't to blame.

A bit of flailing around blindly I found what felt like a drain hole, and after fishing out some pond scum several pints (I'm not kidding, there was quite a lot) of water came pouring out.

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Not entirely sure where that water had come from, but I'll definitely keep an eye on that. There's enough rust on this car as it is without it actively trying to dissolve from the inside out.

I'd hoped to get an oil change done today but just ran out of time, it'll be done tomorrow. Fluid check revealed everything still seems to be where I'd left it, despite the weep from the radiator.

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I really do need to look at wiring in an override for the thermoswitch for the cooling fan, getting this far up the gauge before it cuts in just makes me way too anxious.

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The van was the other recipient of some attention. The leisure battery has been showing signs of having died a sudden death recently. Dropping like a stone to around 10V pretty much as soon as any load is applied.

Before consigning it to the recycling bin I figured it made sense to at least check the electrolyte level, as a visual inspection can often reveal signs of damage too.

The label helpfully said to remove the sticker for maintenance...so I honestly expected to find cell plugs under it.

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Yeah...about that.

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Strikes me as an odd decision to render this sort of battery unserviceable given by its very nature as a leisure battery it's likely to spend a lot of time on float charge when the vehicle is in use or in standby ready for use.

In this case all it told me was that yes it's toast. The electrolyte in all but one cell is the colour or strong black coffee and on closer inspection the one end of the battery has bulged out by about 1/4"

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That lip below the lid is recessed on the opposite end. Something has gone quite badly awry in this battery.

New one is about £100, not the end of the world but a cost I could have done without.

I think I'll probably look to make a bit of a change to the charging/DC supply in the near future too. The current onboard charger is a pretty old school one, and just supplies the DC circuits in parallel with the battery. Given that I'm in and out of the van quite a bit and like to leave the heater powered on in frost guard mode in the winter that means it spends quite a lot more time on charge than is ideal.

I think I'll set things up so instead I have a separate mains to 12V DC supply to run the onboard services when mains is hooked up and a separate proper intelligent charger to look after the battery. It's a pretty trivial matter to use a few relays to switch automatically between the battery or mains DC supply depending on whether mains is present. That will mean I can leave the van plugged in indefinitely without having to worry about it frying the leisure battery - but equally know that it's always ready to go if and when I go to use it.

To be fair kits probably already exist to do exactly what I'm suggesting off the shelf...be curious to see how horrifically overpriced they are as generally seems to be the case for most things aimed at campers or caravans!

DC supply shouldn't be difficult. By far the heaviest load is the heater during startup/shutdown, but even that's fused at 15A, though the highest draw I recall seeing during testing was around 10A...so doesn't need to be anything too specialised.
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Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 83 Citroen BX 14RE. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 86 Mercedes 230TE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo.

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

#1052 Post by Zelandeth » Mon Oct 25, 2021 11:47 pm

I've put the HT lead cover back on for now, mainly to get it out of the way in the garage.

It's a bit of a faff to fit but does tidy things up nicely.

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In hindsight I should have done this *before* going out to run the day's errands so the engine wasn't roasting hot leading to many burned fingers.

Really is a good looking car...

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Despite all of the issues I've had lately - and the blowing exhaust, creaky rear end, squeaky heater fan, it really is a lovely thing to waft around in...I'm really liking the car again...despite having all but decided to sell it this time last week.

I've tracked down where most of that coolant on the radiator is coming from - the hose clip on the top hose has a kink in it. I'll take some measurements tomorrow and get a set of proper Mikalor hose clamps ordered in for it. Should put paid to issues with stripped, kinked or seized hose clips.

This afternoon I got slightly sidetracked by the van. Having temporarily removed the leisure battery while I await arrival of the replacement I figured it would be prudent to remove the fuse from the split charging system. I've isolated the leads anyway, but better safe than sorry.

The main vehicle battery box is something I've barely touched since I got the van. I've simply had no real reason to.

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The white in line fuse holder is the one for the split charging circuit. When reaching for it I couldn't help but notice the random blade fuse taped to a pair of spade terminals next to it was hot. Like REALLY hot. "I'm surprised it's not actively smoking" levels of hot.

A little bit of investigation revealed this to be the DC feed to the fridge, which apparently I'd accidently switched onto DC mode at some point. Being designed purely for use when in transit to/from places that's set up so it will only be powered then the vehicle charging system is active.

While the fuse hadn't blown, this clearly isn't up to the job!

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It was about this point that I discovered that the battery wasn't bolted down either. That was fixed first. Would have liked to have realised that about 10,000 miles ago...

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While rummaging around down there I found this bit of plastic.

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It looked familiar but took a good couple of tens of seconds to figure out what it actually was. It's edging fitted to the front seat frames, like this.

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The outer one on the passenger side has been missing since I got the van...now I know where it ended up, and have refitted it.

I ended up replacing the weedy bit of wire with a maxi fuse holder I had in stock. It's overkill for the application, but is still fused at 20A...and I'd rather have low voltage DC wiring over-engineered than the alternative.

It's hard to see in the photos but all of the other lines going into the split charge relay are beefier than this one was.

I wound up doing a bit of general tidying up and housekeeping...not least actually bolting down the relay rather than leaving it flapping in the breeze as I assume it has been for the last 31 years and labelling the fused lines and battery isolator.

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Not as though you'll ever see any of this as it's hidden under the passenger seat!

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Nevertheless, after running it for half an hour I confirmed that the terminals of the new connection were just barely warmer than ambient...a large improvement from the starting point! So I'm happy it's been sorted even if nobody will ever know.

New hardware is on the way in the form of a new 110Ah deep cycle battery (identical to the old one), a CTek intelligent charger and a 40A DC power supply. With a little rummaging in the box of relays I should be able to get this set up with an automatic switchover and give us a properly looked after battery going forward irrespective of how long I leave the van plugged in for.

I've never had any starting issues even at -10C up in Scotland, so don't think I see any reason to make provision for charging of the vehicle battery from the mains too. If I get that desperate on the road, that's what jump leads were made for...once the engine is running all this requires is enough power to hold the stop solenoid in on the fuel pump.

I will replace that white in line fuse holder when I set about wiring the new kit up, probably with a similar Maxi fuse holder as I used for the fridge line, simply because they're good for way more power than we'll ever see here and I've found them to be nicely robust. Bit harder to find fuses for, but nothing carrying a spare or two isn't enough insurance against (carrying a decent stock of spares in something the size of a small house is less of a headache than in a car!). More and more cars seem to be using Maxi Fuses these days anyway so most factors seem to stock them - albeit not always down to values like 15 or 20A. Probably because they're total overkill for those ratings.

This will be nice to have done as I can just leave it plugged in through the cold and damp weather without worrying about cooking the battery. The heater is set up to kick in if the cabin temperature drops below 5C or the humidity gets above 70%. Found last year that it pretty much completely eliminated issues with mould and mildew. I have the ability to control it over our home WiFi too, so it's really nice on a cold day being able to pull the modern EV trick of turning the heater on before I go out, then open the door to a nicely toasty warm van. It's hardly essential but is nice to have - especially as I do tend to use it as both a workshop and a bit of an escape space if I want somewhere quiet to retreat to for a while. I know I've sung the praises of the Afterburner controller before, but it's a cracking bit of kit.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 83 Citroen BX 14RE. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 86 Mercedes 230TE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo.

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

#1053 Post by Zelandeth » Tue Oct 26, 2021 11:43 pm

Huge box from Tayna Batteries arrived earlier today which weighs about the same as a small planet. Really quick service as usual for them.

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That people, is how to pack a battery.

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A good 3" of padding on all sides (I've removed it from the top), foam wrap and double bagged inside that lot. Took me the best part of ten minutes to dig my way into it. Unlike the last one from eBay which came in a single wall cardboard box with a bit of bubble wrap.

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State of charge indicator shows healthy, though obviously first thing I'll be doing after it's installed is giving it an overnight charge.

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I note that the "remove label for battery maintenance" text has been removed from the label since my previous one was made.

About an hour later another box arrived with this in it.

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It seems to work at least, plus side it's got a manual adjustment for output voltage which means I can bump it up a little from 12V closer to what you'd expect to see from a charged 12V battery. I only had 100W or so of load handy to test it with so far but it behaved perfectly with that.

Not exactly hard to figure out how to hook it up.

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Not exactly the last word in quality in the fit and finish department, but I can't see anything that rings any alarm bells. For £22 delivered I've zero complaints - so long as it doesn't pack in after a week anyway.

I'll probably make some standoffs for it to attach to so it doesn't struggle for airflow - the fan draws in from the bottom and sides so if I mount it flush overheating might be an issue. Not that it will generally be running anywhere close to it's rated capacity for any period. I'm also going to be mounting it to a vertical surface (probably rear wall of the "electrical locker" as I refer to the rear of the space under the sofa/bed) so if we ever have any issues with water ingress through the outer hatch just forward of that area it should be kept well and truly clear of it. Just seems like a sensible precaution...the old school transformer and linear regulator setup would be rather more forgiving of damp than a switch mode supply like this.

Need to engage my brain a bit with regards to wiring things up, but pretty sure I can get an automatic switchover sorted out with a handful of components and some brainpower...quite possibly a single double pole relay could do it...Absolutely sure I can do all the switching on the 12V side...mains can just be left "on" to everything permanently (I'll incorporate a switch anyway for service purposes, but you get the idea).

There are a handful of things I'd like to tidy up while I'm doing this work too - not least getting rid of the last few inline glass type fuse holders. There are a couple of redundant wires that can be binned, one or two to be rerouted actually under the floor, and I'd like to beef up the wire that's actually used for the split charge charging line...it just *looks* weedy to me for the application.

Oh, and a bunch of grounds which run *aaaaaaaall* of the way back to the battery. Zip tied to the nice chunky metal chassis rail. Which being a van/truck chassis has a plethora of bolt holes, mounting eyes etc all over the place...they're getting abbreviated and terminated to the chassis and a beefy earth strap just run to the leisure battery - which should reduce the spaghetti in the leisure battery box by about 80% in one shot. I imagine it should eliminate a lot of the voltage sag we see when the water pump runs a bunch too. Said water pump may get totally rewired anyway... there's something not quite right with it on the control panel (it's causes backfeed into some of the indicator lights on the panel and way more volt drop than I'd like...so the switch may be repurposed to run a remote relay).

The inverter is getting tweaked too. It's only really there as insurance against needing mains in an emergency, and is the sort of thing you can run a battery down with in a hurry - so I want to hook it up to a potential relay same as the setup for the fridge so it can only run when the engine is running and the charging system is live (the idle speed is slightly too low for it to wake up until you blip the throttle).

I actually quite enjoy stuff like this - not so much while doing it, but standing back and looking at the end result and actually seeing an improvement or how much better something works is worth it.

I'm seriously considering just taking a few days away before the weather gets too horrendous to go have a wander around up north. Aside from one overnight trip to collect the S123 I've literally not been more than 40 miles from home since November 2019 and am going *sliiiiightly* insane. Got a couple of friends who can loan me a parking spot and mains extension lead which is all I need with the van, otherwise I can be totally self sufficient. Insulation does just fine even in sub zero temps with the heater, I've got both hot and cold running water, TV, fridge, comfy bed, oven, grill, hob, perfectly usable bathroom, shower, eight USB charging sockets around the bed, and shedloads of storage. What more do you need for a few days away?
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 83 Citroen BX 14RE. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 86 Mercedes 230TE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo.

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

#1054 Post by Zelandeth » Wed Oct 27, 2021 9:00 pm

Oil dropped from the S123. Pretty much the same as previously seen as I more or less expected.

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Looks like the filter has picked up a bit more detritus than previously, but I was expecting that following the head work.

New filter element in.

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Really do appreciate this being a car it's dead easy to do an oil and filter change on without spilling a drop.

I'll leave this in there for a couple of hundred miles and then do another check - hopefully we'll see at least a reduction in the amount of glitter then.

Mileage so far for those who are still keeping a pool going on how far I get before the engine grenades itself and snaps the crankshaft in half.

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My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 83 Citroen BX 14RE. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 86 Mercedes 230TE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo.

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

#1055 Post by Zelandeth » Fri Oct 29, 2021 1:36 am

Definitely on my list of "things you don't want to discover don't work half way through a journey" are windscreen wipers. Which I discovered today when I went to wash the windscreen on the S123 were indeed completely dead.

As they worked fine yesterday my first suspect was a dodgy contact in the fusebox. Which on these cars is on the bulkhead in the engine compartment behind this little plastic cover.

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There's a knack to getting it in and out of the space around the brake servo but you soon learn it.

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I've plenty of prior experience with this type of fuse as Lada used them right up to the late 90s, and about 95% of electrical issues on those can usually be resolved by wiggling fuses. This seems rather less temperamental as the fuse holders are of several orders of magnitude better quality (brass rather than rusty pressed steel for one thing!), but they can still be a bit twitchy. Sure enough as soon as I touched the relevant fuse the wipers sprang to life. To took that one out, cleaned the contacts and the fuse and put it back in. Hopefully problem solved.

Picked up a replacement for the mangled throttle return spring and a new PAS belt from the dealer today (previously picked up belt for that is the wrong size), and have also ordered a new heater control valve - meant to order that with the last batch but totally forgot. Dealer was a tenner cheaper than eBay there too.

Something else I think I need is the seal for below the cap on the SLS reservoir cap (the return line runs into the cap) as we apparently have fluid seeping out of there still, evidenced by the film on the lid of the reservoir.

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This afternoon I finally got the opportunity to do something about the state of the poor BX which had been turning green for the last couple of months thanks to the proximity to the tree in our front garden. If I get my way it's going in the next round of landscaping work.

Given how lovely this car looks when clean (and I never thought I'd say that about a beige car) seeing it in such a state is so sad.

Yuck.

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This doesn't just lift straight off either, it's horrible sticky stuff. Has left black residue in quite a few areas which will probably need polishing off.

Definitely still has some water ingress issues. One of these is definitely around the dash side fresh air vent intakes. Not helped by leaves building up in the scuttle drains.

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I'll need to make sure any drainage bungs in the floor are removed before winter properly arrives.

One of the other leaks I found today by random chance...the rear windscreen...and not in the way you might expect.

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I'm not sure if the seal has shrunk or if it's had a replacement rear screen and either the wrong seal was used or the glass is undersize. That lighter line you can see to the right of the seal itself, that's the edge of the glass. It's not captive under the lip of the seal for a good 50% of the width of the screen at the top. I've never seen this issue before save for on 60s and 70s cars where the seals have obviously perished or shrunk. Seal *looks* fine...just isn't tight up against the glass. You can clearly see the run marks from where water has got past it during the wash.

Still quite grubby in a few areas but hopefully she's looking tidier enough that the neighbors will stop complaining. They honestly have been talking among themselves and shaking their heads at the cars. Seriously folks... don't move into suburbia, it is a nightmare and something I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy.

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I had planned to wash the van too (which is always something of a mammoth undertaking) as it had been turning distinctly green in a few places...however then this happened.

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That is the coupler which should have the hosepipe on one end and be fastened to the pump itself in the pressure washer at the other. It has detached from the pump.

When it did this it did so with quite some force, launching itself a good portion of the way across the driveway. It was still attached to the hose, and now no pump body...so was essentially a free running hose with just enough of a restriction to ensure a decent jet of water was being sprayed. Of course it then took off like a racing snake across the garden, taking me a good thirty seconds to catch it, while getting utterly drenched (it was between me and the tap to cut off the water supply). A poor innocent passer by also got thoroughly soaked during this event unfolding...I don't think I've ever been quite so embarrassed in my whole life. Thankfully they saw the funny side of it, which I count as hugely lucky.

Unfortunately the *reason* it launched out of the front of the pressure washer is that a chunk has broken off the pump casting itself, so there's no tab there any more to hold the clip which should hold that plastic part into the metal body. Of course it's the metal (aluminium) bit that has failed rather than the easily replaced plastic part.

That is now two identical pressure washers I've had where the metal pump casting has failed...first one cracked, dumped the gearbox oil and eventually catastrophically failed as a result of loss of lubricant. This one has had a large chunk of it just break off without any obvious cause. I mean the second one was a freebie replacement from a forum member, but it's disappointing that there seems to be a definite quality control issue there with that part. It also means I can't cobble together one working one out of the two as it's the same part which has failed on both of them. If it was some generic cheapy or Karcher I wouldn't mind so much, but I kind of expected better from Nilfisk.

So now I once again am in the market for a new pressure washer.

At least I managed to knock the worst of it off the cab before this happened I guess...

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At least I can see out of it again now! Finishing off the cab with the hose wasn't too bad, but it won't touch the ingrained stuff and I can barely even get the spray to reach the level of the roof...so it'll have to wait till to pressure washer is replaced.

Shame I'm not friendly with the local bus company or I'd see if I could stick it through the bus wash for a contribution to the petty cash tin.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 83 Citroen BX 14RE. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 86 Mercedes 230TE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo.

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

#1056 Post by Zelandeth » Sat Oct 30, 2021 10:23 pm

Planning to make a quick run up north later in the week in the van. With a long run ahead I decided it was time to finally get around to finishing sorting out the audio in the van...being able to even hear that the stereo is turned on above 40mph would be nice.

After a search covering approximately 80% of my house I eventually unearthed this pair of speakers which I've owned since 2005 if I'm remembering right, but have never actually been properly installed in a vehicle.

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They came as part of a package deal including a sub and amp (which were what I was after) and all the stuff that went with it. Really was a case of a whole car audio system in a box, just add your own head unit - though the shop did have a variant with that too.

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The sub is actually still in use as part of my stereo inside, albeit having seen very little use actually in a car.

These should help out quite a bit compared to the little 10cm ones in the dash.

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There aren't a huge amount of places I can really put them without adding in unsightly surface mount boxes, the obvious spot being in the forward facing sides of the seating/lockers immediately behind the cab. I'm loathe to go cutting holes in things...but improving audio is high enough on my list I'm willing to do it. If some future custodian really wanted to undo it, at the end of the day it's just two panels of plywood laminate they'd need to replace.

Nearside is easy enough.

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The offside however is a bit busier because I've already installed equipment here in the form of the outlet, switch and status lights for the inverter.

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Right in the way.

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After a bit of thinking I've decided to rotate the speaker through 90 degrees and move the outlet, probably to sit directly below the switch.

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That bundle of wires you can see there is on my list of bodges I inherited with the van I hopefully will get rid of shortly. I'm planning to vastly simplify the DC wiring when I add in the new power supply and charger setup. Currently every circuit has its own feed all the way back to the battery, instead I'm going to install a beefy cable to a distribution point in the locker right next to the power supply, where it can then split off to the relevant circuits to get rid of a lot of the voltage drop - probably via an actual fusebox so I can get shot of all the remaining in line ones. The current setup is just a mess, for all I have removed quite a lot of bodgery compared to when I first got the van.

Another wiring change I'd like to make would be to allow me to run the stereo off the accomodation power, as it would be nice to be able to run that without worrying about draining the vehicle battery.

I hadn't been in the nearside locker for a while...like in a couple of years. As evidenced by there still being a mains fan heater in there... I've had working heating since sometime in 2019!

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It will come as absolutely no surprise to anyone who has ever been unfortunate enough to witness me undertaking anything resembling carpentry that things pretty much immediately descended into farce. Eventually we got to this point.

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You are not getting to see what's behind the panel. It is seriously ugly.

The other side first required me to remove the socket, but followed a similar theme.

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Likewise, you're not getting to see the carpentry here either. Especially as a fair portion of it had to be done by hand as I couldn't get in there with the jigsaw.

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I'll reinstall the socket shortly, probably directly under the switch.

I may go back and add a cover of some sort behind the speakers, partly as protection for them and partly to hide my absolutely hideous carpentry.

Will be curious to see how this sounds - has to be an improvement over the tiny dash mounted ones though. No I've not discounted the idea of adding a sub in the future. That's a job for the future though. Would really like to get some better ones actually in the cab too, though that's difficult without actually cutting holes in metalwork which I'd rather not do.

Last job for the day was to give the new power supply a test run. With everything on and the heater in preheat mode and the leisure battery disconnected the line voltage stayed rock steady at the voltage I set it to.

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At a guess that's with about 15A being drawn.

So looks like that will do the job just fine. The fan speed is load dependent, but even at full chat (well, the loudest I've heard it anyway), it's just a distant bit of white noise once the locker is closed. Definitely won't be objectionable for the intended use.

The little round pin socket, before folks ask is a DC outlet. Only thing I generally use it for is the water transfer pump for filling the onboard tank from the portable one. Though as part of the electrical improvements I might install a cigarette lighter style outlet in the locker so I don't need to run in and out of the van during the filling operation - I'd probably replace it with another mains/USB combo, one thing I've learned is that in 2021 you can never have too many USB charging points.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 83 Citroen BX 14RE. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 86 Mercedes 230TE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo.

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

#1057 Post by Zelandeth » Mon Nov 01, 2021 11:03 pm

Today's main mission was to get the speakers I had just fitted wired in. I was not looking forward to this job as chasing wiring through the cab of the van is a royal pain as there's not much that comes off to hide it behind.

Helpfully I discovered that the speaker wiring for the original rear speakers in the ceiling of the living area runs through a grommet in the floor under the fuse box, across the rear cab chassis support and then up into the bodywork.

This meant I could reuse the bit between there and the head unit - I just snipped the wire under the van and dropped a cable tail down from the lockers right next to the speakers. Easy.

I've left the original wiring in place as my intention is to wire those up to the monitor in the back, giving us a self contained entertainment setup without the need for standalone speakers or anything.

While crawling around I discovered that the reversing light switch (which doesn't work) is actually external to the gearbox, attached to the back of the gearchange linkage.

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I'll need to have a poke around at that and see if it can be adjusted/repaired or if it needs replacing. Could even just be old grease that's dried up over time.

While crawling around I had a hunt for something which has been bugging the heck out of me since the day I bought the van - an extremely annoying rattly buzz (or buzzy rattle) which appears whenever the engine gets anywhere towards the top end of the rev band. Which equates to any road speed above about 55mph.

I was pretty confident this was something to do with the handbrake cable. I originally thought it was coming from here where the cable passes through a chassis member.

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Turned out that wasn't the culprit as putting a rubber sheath over it made precisely zero difference. A little more digging tracked it down.

https://youtu.be/tbNIAIyXLYY

It's the cable return spring that's rattling against the little eye it passes through.

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I'll need to see if I can find a parts diagram to see if there should be something else there - it feels like there should have been a rubber boot or something to prevent this being an issue - as it seems like it will always have done this. I know mechanical refinement was never really the top of the priority list for a vehicle like this, but a noise as maddening as this surely never would have been considered normal.

I note that there are two holes in the cable yoke with nothing on them, I do wonder if there should be a spring or something hooked on there.

The speaker installation by the way appears to have been a success. While not stellar it's at least half decent now. Decent stereo separation, good chunk of bass and no real distortion - especially as the heavy lifting is now being done by the 6x9s rather than the tiny little speakers in the dash.

Last job before I downed tools was tweaking the offside wiper arm a little as I noted last time I was out in the rain that it was fouling the side of the windscreen.

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Dropped it down by a couple of splines on the spindle and hopefully that will do it. There's no real way to get the wipers looking both tidy and have decent coverage. Not sure if this just something unique to the right hand drive vans or if they're all like that.

Oh, and I managed to fill three full size rubbish bags with bits and pieces between the nooks, crannies, drawers, lockers and pocket dimensions.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 83 Citroen BX 14RE. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 86 Mercedes 230TE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo.

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

#1058 Post by Zelandeth » Fri Nov 05, 2021 12:15 am

Having barely left the concrete jungle I live in for the last two years (almost to the week actually) this is a nice change.

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At the traditional spot where I usually snap a photo of my cars up here. Lada and Jag have been the only recent ones missed...and the Jag will be living less than 20 miles from this spot in the future so I'll be arranging that to happen one way or another! The Invacar I still really want to do the round country run in so would obviously happen then. Merc S123...well if the engine doesn't grenade itself in the next couple of months we'll see. Kinda sad I never got the Lada there, just never had the opportunity...being 450 plus change miles from my current driveway means it's not a trip I can just make on a whim!

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Definitely isn't enjoying the cheap supermarket fuel. I'm sure the actual difference is absolutely tiny, but in a 2.8t brick with 78bhp to work with and the aerodynamic profile of a block of flats it doesn't take much to be noticeable. Dealing with a bit of a headwind on the first half of my drive out today and I was barely managing to hold 50 in top gear, even the slightest of gradients necessitating a drop to fourth. The return trip, bounded along at 60 in top gear without a care in the world, only a couple of the steeper hills requiring me to drop gears. You always notice a headwind in this, but the difference usually isn't so dramatic unless it's really strong.

Guess it shows how much on the knife edge of the performance being acceptable the van is.

Given none of the stations around here have premium fuels I'll have a nose around to see if anywhere sells any of the cetane booster treatments.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 83 Citroen BX 14RE. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 86 Mercedes 230TE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo.

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

#1059 Post by Zelandeth » Wed Nov 10, 2021 10:38 pm

One issue I noted while out last week with the van was that the freshwater pump had sprung a slight leak. The leak was tiny, however it meant it kept losing prime.

A bit of digging found a seal kit for £30 odd but couldn't actually find any in stock...or for literally £7 more including delivery...

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Yep...whole brand new pump, on my doorstep in less than 24 hours.

Made in Mexico rather than China too, not been sitting around on a shelf for years either.

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Old leaky water pump... I'd forgotten the pipework in here was still such a mess. I really need to tidy this up at some point.

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Old and new next to each other to make sure everything matched up. Yep, aside from the label they seem to be identical.

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The silicone sealant oozing out between the two halves of the pump casting suggests to me that someone has had a shot at sealing this up before.

New one in, correct way up this time round. The instructions suggest that the motor should be at the top if vertically mounted.

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The strainer is bugging me...the threads are such that I can't position it in a useful direction.

Needs a bit of tidying but is working fine... reckon the old one had been struggling for a while as this now primes several orders of magnitude faster than the old one and provides a much smoother flow.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 83 Citroen BX 14RE. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 86 Mercedes 230TE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo.

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

#1060 Post by Zelandeth » Tue Nov 16, 2021 3:19 am

Very quick job on the van a couple of days ago. Can you spot it?

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New air filter.

The old one still wasn't quite due by mileage but has been in there since a couple of days after I bought it and was looking quite grubby.

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The whole housing being part of the filter means it's a bit more expensive to replace - but means changing the filter is literally a ten second job. One spring clip then the whole thing just pulls off. Have oil and fuel filters waiting to go on too, so will see about getting those done shortly.

The old water pump had definitely been got at with silicone and instant gasket.

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Old pump was rather full of gunk, evidenced here by what was built up on the pressure switch.

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Eww. Kind of glad I pulled it now...definitely think the system will be getting rather more aggressively treated this year as I don't want that stuff growing in there.
My website - aka. My *other* waste of time
Current fleet: 73 AC Model 70. 83 Citroen BX 14RE. 85 Sinclair C5. 85 Jaguar XJ-S V12 HE. 86 Mercedes 230TE. 90 Mercedes 208D AutoTrail Navajo.

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