My BX14 RE

Tell us about life with your BX, or indeed life in general!
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Fumbler
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My BX14 RE

Post by Fumbler »

Hullo,

I'm an 18 year-old apprentice electrician and a car nut. In a fit of madness in April, I decided having a small Japanese car wasn't enough.
I bought this here BX14 RE from A.R Lever of this very group.
PXL_20210401_113916065.thumb.jpg.418420fcfbe5f1570b70347a05af9d04.jpg
Here it is when it was delivered.
PXL_20210424_164235620.jpg
Here it is hiding when it broke down and needed to get pushed to the carpark at college.
PXL_20210429_182244893.jpg
Here it is, after it fixed itself (quite literally), enjoying some space all to itself.
PXL_20210512_181229141.jpg
Here it is in a photo I took last week.

Unfortunately, I'm not at my computer at home which has the giant file full of pictures of the work I've done on it since taking delivery of it. I'll give an abridged summary of some of the stuff I've done:
  • Changed tyres
  • Changed the radio with a spare
  • Scrubbed down the rear bumper and made it red again
  • Done some cosmetic fixes to the nearside
  • Changed the main engine and body earth straps for new
  • Removed the scary and ancient Serpi Star alarm system
  • Fixed the heater controls
  • Filled the holes where the spolier used to be
  • Scrubbed the interior and fixed some trim rattles
  • Emptied ashtray
There are plenty of things I have left out so, if it's possible for non-members to, have a look at the main thread for it I've made on the Autoshite forum: https://autoshite.com/topic/36188-fumbl ... rs/page/5/

Things I have yet to do include refurbishing the wheels, welding the NSF inner wing, replacing the carburettor, investigating the lazy starter when hot, painting the rear notch to remove the marks from the spoiler and many other things on top of that. Those who followed ARLever on Facebook will know the engine required some rebuild work to get the car running again. He was generous enough to load the car to the gunnels with spares which have already been useful. Top bloke, very helpful.
I bought this car to daily(!) during the summer to keep the miles off the '97 Nissan Micra I also own. Two weeks after collecting the BX and getting new tyres, I launched it 178 miles to college in Somerset. In doing these trips, I've nearly put on 1000 miles on it. The M25 has never been more comfortable. Handling, braking and ride comfort on this thing is so good. I really love driving this car. It's still a bit too dependant on the spanner turning but that should, with enough luck, get less and less with the work I have planned on it.

EDIT: It's been a while since I've uploaded imaged on a phpBB forum so I'm a little rusty with the upload limit and embedding issues I'm having.
In BX related edits, however, Howmanyleft states this is 1 of 16 BX14 RE cars IIRC. I wonder how true that is.
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Last edited by Fumbler on Thu Oct 21, 2021 10:13 pm, edited 7 times in total.

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white exec
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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by white exec »

Hi, amd a hearty welcome!

No half-measures there - you really have got stuck in! Some great photos, and lots of detail. Love the pic of all the parts laid out on the lawn!

Our previous '89 19RD had the same interior, but was the darker Delage Red.
The Sable 19D we bought last October is amid a similar list of 'essential tweaks'.

You're right about the ride. If the suspension is in the condition it should be, travel at speed (any speed) is a delight.
Some younger members of our family were amazed that we should be getting rid of an '03 RAV4 as a daily, and replacing it with a near-30-year-old Citroen instead. Well, Covid etc has prevented them from coming over (we're in Andalucia) and trying it...

You have a splended car there for someone starting out on driving and own maintenance - probably couldn't be bettered.

Lots of expertise on hydropneumatic Citroens here, so hopefully you can find time to post more.
Chris

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Fumbler
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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by Fumbler »

white exec wrote:
Thu May 20, 2021 9:45 pm
Hi, amd a hearty welcome!

No half-measures there - you really have got stuck in! Some great photos, and lots of detail. Love the pic of all the parts laid out on the lawn!

Our previous '89 19RD had the same interior, but was the darker Delage Red.
The Sable 19D we bought last October is amid a similar list of 'essential tweaks'.

You're right about the ride. If the suspension is in the condition it should be, travel at speed (any speed) is a delight.
Some younger members of our family were amazed that we should be getting rid of an '03 RAV4 as a daily, and replacing it with a near-30-year-old Citroen instead. Well, Covid etc has prevented them from coming over (we're in Andalucia) and trying it...

You have a splended car there for someone starting out on driving and own maintenance - probably couldn't be bettered.

Lots of expertise on hydropneumatic Citroens here, so hopefully you can find time to post more.
Thanks a bunch! I'll acquaint myself with the selling page as well because I have a few bits to shift on.

The next few jobs I have planned to do immediately as I get home are to replace the carburettor, correctly make off the old body earthing point, fit a bigger battery and fix the wheelarch corrosion. The underbody has some rusty scars from where it was dragged out of its resting place which I really do need to get on top of. Even though it certainly isn't going to travel during the winter. Water is enough of a problem!

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Jaba
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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by Jaba »

Fumbler thats a heartwarming story reading about a relative youngster who has taken on a BX, our favourite car, and getting as much fun and pleasure out of it as we all do.
You have discovered one of the common problems - lazy starter - There are at least two solutions to this.
I don't drive mine much these days but I have driven over 500000 miles in BXs since 1992. They certainly can be troublesome but the rewards make it worthwhile to persevere.
The Joy of BX with just one Citroën BX to my name now. Will I sing Bye Bye to my GTI or will it be Till death us do part.

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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by Fumbler »

Jaba wrote:
Thu May 20, 2021 10:55 pm
Fumbler thats a heartwarming story reading about a relative youngster who has taken on a BX, our favourite car, and getting as much fun and pleasure out of it as we all do.
You have discovered one of the common problems - lazy starter - There are at least two solutions to this.
Thanks! Do tell about the starter fixes. I could do without FTPing at the lights on the A303 again...

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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by jamescarruthers »

Welcome along! I'm a big BX14 fan, they are a great drive.
1987 Volvo 480 ES
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Previous BX's:
A966 XRL -- BX 16 TRS
H767 BEG -- BX 14 TGE
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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by RobC »

My go to solution for the lazy starter is to fit a relay for the solenoid with a feed direct from the battery +ve so that the tired ignition switch has to work less hard.
You can fish the wire out from the large connector under the battery. Haynes wiring diagram will help with this. I then secure the relay in with the other relays in the scuttle area by the rear washer bottle. Ideally you should fit an inline fuse to the new +ve feed from the battery as well.
Last edited by RobC on Fri May 21, 2021 9:51 am, edited 3 times in total.
1991 Citroen BX 16v

RobC
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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by RobC »

PS welcome by the way! I used to have a 14 and it’s a cracking car
1991 Citroen BX 16v

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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by jamescarruthers »

RobC wrote:
Fri May 21, 2021 9:50 am
My go to solution for the lazy starter is to fit a relay for the solenoid with a feed direct from the battery +ve so that the tired ignition switch has to work less hard.
You can fish the wire out from the large connector under the battery. Haynes wiring diagram will help with this. I then secure the relay in with the other relays in the scuttle area by the rear washer bottle. Ideally you should fit an inline fuse to the new +ve feed from the battery as well.
This for the starter wiring, plus while you are in an electrical mood: add an eBay H4 relay harness to the headlights to get much better illumination and massively reduced voltage drop at the bulbs.
1987 Volvo 480 ES
2006 Citroen C6 Exclusive 3.0 petrol/LPG

Previous BX's:
A966 XRL -- BX 16 TRS
H767 BEG -- BX 14 TGE
B316 AMP -- BX 14 E

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white exec
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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by white exec »

Second all of that...
- relays for both main and dipped beams (takes load off the lighting switch, and limits impact of the original long wiring runs)
- relay for starter solenoid (Starter solenoid itself can pull around 25A, so fuse at 30/40A)
and use 2.5mm² cabling for both.

An 096-size battery (diesel spec) should fit. Yuasa YBX3096 recommended.
And get shot of the old lead (Pb) battery clamps, and replace with brass ones. The original ones develop internal resistance with age.
Chris

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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by rutter123 »

The old battery terminals could be the source of your starting issues, I use marine type battery terminals.
Yes the 14's are a little underrated I had one years ago a mk1 150c the TU engines are much better
And I bet you won't see another one parked up at your college car park.
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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by Fumbler »

white exec wrote:
Fri May 21, 2021 10:12 am
Second all of that...
- relays for both main and dipped beams (takes load off the lighting switch, and limits impact of the original long wiring runs)
- relay for starter solenoid (Starter solenoid itself can pull around 25A, so fuse at 30/40A)
and use 2.5mm² cabling for both.

An 096-size battery (diesel spec) should fit. Yuasa YBX3096 recommended.
And get shot of the old lead (Pb) battery clamps, and replace with brass ones. The original ones develop internal resistance with age.
rutter123 wrote:
Fri May 21, 2021 10:32 am
The old battery terminals could be the source of your starting issues, I use marine type battery terminals.
Yes the 14's are a little underrated I had one years ago a mk1 150c the TU engines are much better
And I bet you won't see another one parked up at your college car park.
jamescarruthers wrote:
Fri May 21, 2021 9:59 am


This for the starter wiring, plus while you are in an electrical mood: add an eBay H4 relay harness to the headlights to get much better illumination and massively reduced voltage drop at the bulbs.
OK so I replaced the original lead earth clamp and straps last weekend. I knew it was of issue as it's got very hot before. Further details laid out on the Autoshite thread.
There may already be starter relay somewhere. When it broke down at college, some switch contacts somewhere welded themselves together and the car kept cranking with the key out of the ignition. The wire nearly caught fire and I nearly browned my trousers. I had to disconnect the battery and let everything cool for a few hours before it fixed itself. There's still a high resistance joint somewhere so if it is just the tired ignition switch, I'll fit a new relay. Here are the battery connections at present:
PXL_20210515_185959760.thumb.jpg.3461cbf3ede167629aba21cabfd6a8bf.jpg
The relay box visible on the bulkhead contains one singular relay with some 2.5mm cables attached. Connections at the ignition switch have been mucked about nwith owing to all the old alarm wiring still being there. This includes an old relay base and tons of redundant wire.
In addition to replacing the main engine earth with 35mm^2 cable (I wasn't messing about this time!) I fitted a new earth strap to the body. The new connection point has made my map lights now work and the car does start more readily than before.
The positive was already replaced with a good heavy duty clamp and had new connections. If I'm reading correctly, the breakout connector near the battery tray where the starter wiring is going?

While starting from cold isn't too much of an issue, the battery fitted is the same size as the one for my 998CC Micra and not really up to the task for the 1.4. Would something like this fit the bill? https://www.halfords.com/motoring/batte ... 51004.html
I still might be able to stump up for a 096 battery but this is preferred for cost reasons, especially if I'm also spending on new wire.
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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by Tim Leech »

Welcome!

Good luck with your new car, your in safe hands here, we also have a busy facebook page
Lots of Motors, mostly semi broken....

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Fumbler
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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by Fumbler »

Tim Leech wrote:
Fri May 21, 2021 11:06 am
Welcome!

Good luck with your new car, your in safe hands here, we also have a busy facebook page
That's good to hear. I don't do Facebook but it seems there's still plenty of knowledge kicking about on the forum.

For anyone interested, here's the in-depth account of the battery work, heater, radio and alarm stuff:
https://autoshite.com/topic/36188-fumbl ... rs/page/8/

Speaking of the radio, I need to investigate the Faraday cage on the bonnet and clean up the earths, and earth the radio chassis as well (Blaupunkt provide a stud to connect to. You can hear engine interference really well. That's besides the point, I'd really like to fix the starter issue next week. Choonz can wait.

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Re: My BX14 RE

Post by Fumbler »

Oh, I should probably also talk a little bit about the hydropneumatic system. It works very well, I have a new octopus should I need to fit it, some pipework has been replaced but, most importantly, the car was very well cared for when it was new. It's been comprehensively Waxoyled and, while not my choice of undercoat, it has worked wonders on the pipes running to the rear. The MoT in February advised corrosion on all pipes, but it looks to be a case of CBA on the tester's part as there are loads of pipes, some are rusty and others are undercoated. This is probably was has helped the car live so long. The box sections are dripping with the stuff, the pipes to the height corrector look just fine and is ultimately what nudged me into buying the car. Arlever also directed me where to go to get pipes should I need any, but all is well on that front, for now.
Probably the most pressing issue on this car's suspension system is the state of the strut tops on the dront. The rubber protector thingie cracked up and has corrosed the nearside strut top rather badly, the offside isn;t bad byt the pipe is in ropey condition. At least its accessible. Do these have the same issues as Xantias with the struts failing and launching through the bonnets? I have one spare strut and I do remember seeing strut tops for sale on the Internet. If push comes to shove, I can replace them with some brave pills, cigarettes and anything else massively unhealthy which make me feel better.