St Tropez restoration blog

Tell us about life with your BX, or indeed life in general!
mds141
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by mds141 » Sun Jun 16, 2013 7:16 pm

Mickey taker wrote:Sandre , your turning into the St Tropez stalker :D
Turning? :D
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Des Smith
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by Des Smith » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:23 am

Mickey taker wrote:Sandre , your turning into the St Tropez stalker :D
No harm in admiring an attractive car? I still say white is the best colour, but hard to find in a snowdrift.
BX14TE St Tropez 1990 - now sold
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Tinkley
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by Tinkley » Tue Jun 18, 2013 10:06 pm

Well done for saving this car Des. I really liked my 14RE in - white!. If it had had the later TU engine I might still be using it. It probably had less rust than yours after 175k. To me when I bought it with 12k on I never thought I would be driving it 15 years later, but I was. They are pretty decent cars these relatively basic ones and not to be sniffed at.
I look forward to seeing it in the flesh or at least in photos, its very encouraging. The first Athena I bought was a great condition car and I think she could be brought back to vgc with a little tlc. She will need quite a bit of welding but nothing like your St Tropez, more she needs pushing and pulling plus some new panel parts esp o/s wing. Can Chevronics push a C pillar across 5mm?

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Des Smith
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by Des Smith » Wed Jun 19, 2013 12:20 am

Tinkley wrote: The first Athena I bought was a great condition car and I think she could be brought back to vgc with a little tlc. She will need quite a bit of welding but nothing like your St Tropez, more she needs pushing and pulling plus some new panel parts esp o/s wing. Can Chevronics push a C pillar across 5mm?
To be honest, Rob would be better placed to give you an answer on that. They seem to manage most things short of walking on water. I have to say I'm more comfortable with the idea cutting and welding a straight car than trying to straighten a bent one. I'd be worried about handling and tracking to name but two potential trouble spots.

More pics to post up. I've been a little busy and only just got round to uploading these latest photos to Flickr. More porn for Mr Leech! Calm down Tim, it's only a car...

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OS rear view of rear cross member and subframe

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NS bumpstop and rear sphere

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Rear subframe hydraulics

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Front NS wheel arch

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Engine compartment

Well done to Barry for spotting the non-OE bumpstop, but Mr Moss says it's correct, and I'm happy with that. You can see that the engine compartment is looking quite clean and tidy and although it won't be a concours finish, it'll being good enough for me.

In other news, the St Tropez is off to the paintshop this week for a fresh coat of paint, meaning you'll need shades or risk the danger of snow-blindness if you see me at the CCC rally. Finally, got my CCC welcome pack yesterday complete with the Citroenian and suitably smug about featuring in the BX section.
BX14TE St Tropez 1990 - now sold
Xsara Forte 1.4i 2000
Kawasaki GPz550A4 1987

Tinkley
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by Tinkley » Wed Jun 19, 2013 6:59 pm

Thats looking very tidy indeed, nice work. Bet she comes out from spraying like a little gem.

I'm not worried about the Athena being off true. She was spot on after the irst rear end and after the later one she felt no different as I drove her home from it. Subframes are NOT bent, she'll need new droplinks as she 'clonk's' but otherwise not bad. I might enquire with Rob. The engines out of her at the moment and if I can borrow something to tow her on might get the boys to have a look. Already have a price for remanufactured engine £1350 from Vege, plus dreaded of course but the unit I had from them before was a cracker.

Look forward to your next instalment, roll on a summer suitable for a St Tropez...

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barry badger
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by barry badger » Wed Jun 19, 2013 11:42 pm

Tinkley wrote:Thats looking very tidy indeed, nice work. Bet she comes out from spraying like a little gem.

Already have a price for remanufactured engine £1350 from Vege, plus dreaded of course but the unit I had from them before was a cracker.

...
Which engine is in your athena? Is that for them to remanufacture your own engine?
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bxzx16v
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by bxzx16v » Thu Jun 20, 2013 6:14 am

That looks cracking work 8) .

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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by Tinkley » Thu Jun 20, 2013 5:22 pm

Yes Barry. It was to remanufacture my own XU52C unit. Nominally the last generation B2C engine with 94bhp and carburettor - it lost 12bhp with a cat!. It's still a runner, just tired after 157k and definitely burns oil (valve guides/stem seals) but also is at least 15bhp down on power. So hard to tell when I have only done the last 39k in it. Starting the CatD one the idle was at least 300 rpm higher at same carb settings, and pressing the pedal you could feel the extra ooomph even at standstill. I was trying to gently ease the parts into movement rather than try and wreck'em. Technically the Athena almost achieves 100bhp per tonne which is a reasonable power to weight ratio in the real world, and reasonable cost to run over 50mpg at steady 70 indicated and 47-48mpg say on a longish trip say down the A303 down to Devon.

The guy at Vege was very helpful and prompt. He could not give an exact timescale as it depends on them getting in the necessary parts ie new valves, bearings, maybe o/s pistons etc. I am not bothered about time but I'm sure it would not be overlong. The last unit I exchanged in 04 and got probably the last one they had for exchange - they got my old one with a big hole in the crankcase!. It's why I will be doing a big engine oil flush whilst recommissioning that Vege unit next week.

I would imagine that price would be similar for 1.4 and 1.9 units (2 valve) as long as you have a unit that can be remanufactured.

Like a few others its whether the car shell is good enough to restore after 2 CatD incidents. If its not too much more than the engine recon I'd do it. If I could get a decentish tidy (not Concours) and mech sound car for under 3 -3.5k I'd do it. 200-250k possible on a 1.6 petrol I believe. It would actually be reasonable value, apart from the poxy road tax. Only the Green party have got that issue right, its better to reuse, why throw away serviceable stuff etc etc. Those of us who do get penalised for doing so
our reward for using fewer resources, here endeth preaching to the converted!.

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Des Smith
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by Des Smith » Sun Jun 23, 2013 11:37 am

Here's one for the heavy oil brigade. I've been looking for a SWB Nissan Terrano in good condition throughout the winter, and one that fits the bill has finally appeared. It's a '99 pre-facelift model in green and has only done a genuine 45k. I went to have a look at it yesterday and it was a done deal an hour later. The MX3 was part-exchanged, so sadly it's goodbye to a great-handling car and I shall miss it loads. I can't justify three cars and the neighbours are really antsy about parking in the close. The rationale is simple - we do fewer journeys these days but they tend to be longer, so the Terrano makes more sense, especially when you factor in the 4WD load-carrying and off-road capabilities. After a couple of hours in the MX3, I get a numb bum and exiting the car can be a bit of a palaver. Compared that with the Terrano, you just open the door and jump!
BX14TE St Tropez 1990 - now sold
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Dollywobbler
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by Dollywobbler » Sun Jun 23, 2013 6:06 pm

Found my SWB Maverick far too bouncy. Firm ride, uncomfortable seat. The Disco I've just bought feels like a BX by comparison! The Mavrranos are seriously under-rated though - very capable off-road. Which mine had been a diesel!

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Des Smith
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by Des Smith » Sun Jun 23, 2013 8:18 pm

I've read some comments about the LWB Terrano handling better, but I found the SWB to be quite comfortable and well-behaved. My first Terrano had new shock absorbers on the back end, which would have damped out bouncy springs. The big mileages we covered on the trip to Morocco last year were possible only because the driving position was good, the seats were firm but not overly so and the whole plot felt so relaxed. Off-road is another story, but then you drive to the conditions and you know it's going to be a bit bouncy.

Doctor Obvious here, but the ride also depends how a car's being driven - I know people who charge around in their 4x4s like a bull at a gate and then wonder why they break!
BX14TE St Tropez 1990 - now sold
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Des Smith
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by Des Smith » Wed Jun 26, 2013 3:13 pm

Back to the St Tropez for a change! The paintshop have prepped it for the respray. I'm not clear how 'old' these pics are, but she is due back at Chevronic on Monday, presumably after a quick bake. It's not a full respray, but obviously all the 'new' panels will be done and they will blend in with the old paint. Spraying the roof was going to be a pain, because the sunroof needed to come out, and as it never leaked in the rain, Rob wasn't keen to disturb the seal - I was 100% with him on that.

A full respray would have been £££'s more and under the circumstances, it's just as well I ducked out. I'd rather have a rebuilt gearbox for my money. Happily, the white should be an easy colour to blend new to old and once the original paintwork is polished up, there shouldn't be an obvious difference. I'm not trying to jump the gun, but I reckon she should be close to finished by the end of next week. :D :D :D

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Prepped for respray the boot area

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Prepped for respray OS view

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Prepped for respray NS view
BX14TE St Tropez 1990 - now sold
Xsara Forte 1.4i 2000
Kawasaki GPz550A4 1987

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Des Smith
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by Des Smith » Tue Jul 02, 2013 1:49 pm

Rob emailed me yesterday to say the St Tropez was back from the paintshop and this morning he has sent over photos of the work in progress. The new paint looks amazing, but the problem is now about getting the original paintwork up to the same standard!

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NS boot interior resprayed

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NS engine compartment and inner wing

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OS engine compartment and inner wing

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OS rear wing resprayed... is that the reflection of a white DS in the paintwork?

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NS C pillar and door shut. So nice you want to lick it!

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Waxing the back end

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Waxing the front end

They are now cracking on with the waxing and re-assembly, so it shouldn't be too long before the job is done. Having said that, the front wings have a bit of rust and will need replacing at some stage and apparently Rob tells me the welding done on the car before I bought it had damaged the wheel arch liners, so while I'll have the car to show at the CCC rally this month, it'll need to go back for some more work in the autumn.
BX14TE St Tropez 1990 - now sold
Xsara Forte 1.4i 2000
Kawasaki GPz550A4 1987

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mat_fenwick
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by mat_fenwick » Tue Jul 02, 2013 2:22 pm

Des Smith wrote:Image
[-X That filler flap is a real let down :wink:
So nice you want to lick it!
Please tell me this is an unfulfilled urge you have?
Image

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Way2go
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Re: St Tropez restoration blog

Post by Way2go » Tue Jul 02, 2013 2:45 pm

mat_fenwick wrote:
Des Smith wrote: So nice you want to lick it!
Please tell me this is an unfulfilled urge you have?
Perhaps he could offer it as a bit of variety to the "window-lickers" that Doc has posted about. :lol:
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