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Created by Owain on 27 Aug 2014 17:42

Owain on 28 May 2010 15:06
I'm getting some vinyls done soon, might as well get my Paypal login details across the sunstrip so I always have them available.

Just ordered my KW kit - managed to wangle a good deal through a mate so I'm going for the V2's after I started doubting the V1's.

Had some manual wing mirrors turn up this morning from eBay, so they're going on to replace the electric ones the previous owner so kindly rodgered. Can't be arsed with fixing the originals just to have the heavier electric ones, and for �7 each it's a bit of a no-brainer.

Strut brace is also on its way, hopefully along with some bolts from Swampy. Starting to lose track of all the little bits I've ordered now, best start digging through my sent items to make sure it all turns up...

Owain

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Owain on 28 May 2010 19:08
Boooo, strut brace is here but no bolts yet so I can't have a play with that.

I have at least finally invested in a decent ½" Teng socket set from Screwfix, the crappy one I've got at the moment will be useless at sorting big siezed bolts on the suspension, so had to bite the bullet there. Also got some torx bits.

Clumsily, I just ordered an oil cooler kit off eBay. I think that's all the major purchases done for the car really which is excellent, as much as it's dull I do have a mortgage to pay.

Although I don't have any of the suspension components yet I might have a bash at dismantling then rebuilding the suspension tonight just to get an idea of what's involved.

Watch this space...

Owain

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Owain on 29 May 2010 01:09
Okay, so I've got a free evening and some parcels. Mostly dull stuff but I do have some new manual wing mirrors and a strut brace; sadly I have no bolts for the latter so that'll have to wait.

Mirrors are an absolute doddle - you'll probably need to remove the arm rest from the doors using 8mm and 10mm sockets. Three torx screws either side and you're golden. I did consider ripping out all the wiring, but that would've left a big hole in the side of the car, so decided against that for now. They don't look amazing as they don't have the plastic bits on the inside but hey, they work and I don't think we were in line for any show & shine awards anyway.



Weirdly I would've expected the manual mirrors to have been lighter, but they were exactly the same. Still, at least I can now actually adjust them rather than having to shuffle my arse around in my seat before overtaking.

The left window doesn't work thanks to Jim'll Fix It Electricals who sadly got to the car before I owned it, so might as well take out the motor - I hope to source some manual winders soon enough anyway. The motor is rivetted in, so you'll need to drill those three out then pop the motor out.



Probably only about half a kilo, but every little helps. Somehow during this process, I managed to cut my finger without breaking my latex gloves, which was extremely unpleasant.



That's sadly pretty much all I can do tonight while I wait for all my other bits to arrive. But what's that? You want me to test-fit my strut brace? Oh, go on then.

It's about this point that you need to seriously consider whether or not you have any beers left in the fridge; it's hot out there and you'll be needing one. Indeed, there is a very real risk that you polished off the last one yesterday, you have been knocking them back recently and quite frankly it's starting to show.

Dag namn it, we're out. Oh well, we'll pick some up on a test drive. It's probably worth picking up a ropey-looking microwave lasagne while you're there, as you sure as hell aren't going to be cooking anything.

Bonnet up, loosen off the strut bolts all round then remove them. Not entirely sure what this was bringing to the party:



...so it can join the ever-increasing pile of stuff at the back of my garage. The brace as it came was slightly too long, so it's worth slackening off the adjuster locking nuts (a phrase I just made up) before fitting it.

On it goes, do the bolts up hand tight.



Does the bonnet still shut okay? No, not really. But with a bit of force nobody need know. It certainly encourages it to open when you pop the catch fo sho.

Remember you don't have long enough bolts, remove brace, replace bolts. Bear in mind these bolts need to be exactly tight enough, around 6.34 Edison Horses should do it. I also managed to free the busted end of my matrix coolant pipe, a replacement for which should, again, be in the post. Behold, the worst designed piece of car ever! "What's that? The only place you can pull it from means exerting enormous pressure at 90 degrees off axis? Well, in that case we'd better make it out of the most brittle plastic in the land, then put it next to the exhaust manifold just to make sure it breaks every time!"



Right, me blowers aren't working. I swear it's something to do with this plug:



But I'll be buggered if I can figure out where it came from. Anyone got any ideas? Sadly my multimeter is nadgered so I can't test the electrics right now.

Oh well, time to work on the beer belly. Take car for a quick drive so that any loose screws you've forgotten about all collect up nicely in the footwells, and you're all done.

Owain

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Owain on 29 May 2010 19:28
jcphat - Excellent news! Sadly Dave couldn't be here tonight to collect it, so I'll steal it for myself. I'd like to thank my Mum, and God.

Right, decided I'd take a look under the rear arches just to get a feel for what's where and how it comes apart - should be getting new suspension next week so trying not to fail at that.

Wheels off, poke around. I think I can see how the damper comes off, but can anyone tell me what the two sprung devices on the left are?



I also had a look at the torsion beams, it seems that one end of each has a torx screw, the other a 10mm nut. Once both these are removed, should the beams come out? In which case, are they removed by pulling towards the torx end or the nut end? I'll search around on the forum and see what I can find.

The rear brakes look pretty knackered, so might as well sort those now we're here. There are two 17mm bolts in the side of the caliper, they'll be siezed and rusty and horrible, but with plenty of WD40 they will loosen up. You'll want to use a breaker bar rather than your standard ratchet, you'll only end up screwing it up otherwise.



Firm but gentle, out they come and the front part of the caliper comes off with the disc:



You'll need to move the pads apart a little with a lever in order to get the caliper off the disc, but that's easy enough. Removing the pads from the caliper was harder than I thought, due to the sheer state of the caliper. First up, remove the spring clips. As far as I could see, there was physically no way of removing the old pads without destroying a small metal strip which didn't want to move. After some persuasion with a hammer, this strip came out - evidently it was meant to.

After searching around on the forum when the second one wouldn't come off yes, these are apparently called "sliders", which is a misnomer if ever I've heard one. They're just a small piece of metal on which the pads slide up and down on - don't really see why they're necessary but hey ho, they're French after all.

You could probably re-use the old sliders and springs, but mine were in a pretty bad way. Quick call to Unipart and luckily they had a set in stock - part number GBK1087 (�10.11inc vat). It's worth bearing in mind he told me they'd probably not stock them much in the future as the 306 is now such an old car, so they probably won't have any on the shelf. They can still order them in, but expect a 2-day wait.

For discs I got the Brembo solid discs from GSF - part code 603PC0012 at �18.80 each. Pads were 646PC0051 at �21.27 for the set. Luckily I have a GSF and Unipart in Chelmsford, so wasn't a big deal. Hmm, shiny:



That's as far as I've gotten today, I'm probably going to clean up the calipers and paint them to stop them going horrible again, then I'll take another look at the suspension.

Alas no real injuries to report today, just this interesting little mark:



...which at first appears to be just dirt but is actually rust which appears to have been engrained into my skin whilst trying to remove the caliper bolts. Anyway must dash, it's Miami Melt week at Muckers.

Owain

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Owain on 29 May 2010 22:33
Cheers Prism, although on one point I would like to disagree:

"The sliders on the rear calipers allow you to remove the pads without having to undo the two bolts."

Isn't theory a wonderful thing Wink

I'll watch out for those brake things then and try not to destroy them too much. I've just cleaned up the calipers and given them a good sanding down before a first coat of Hammerite. Might as well be a ponce while we're here and make them all shiny like.

Owain

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Owain on 30 May 2010 00:45
Ah yes, this "offset washer" I keep hearing about - what on earth is it? It appears to me to just be a normal washer under the torx bolt, is that right?

Part of my aim is to take everything apart, clean it up then reassemble it so these jobs are far simpler next time. When you reassemble the caliper I've heard of people putting copper grease on them to stop them siezing - where should it go? Presumably I can coat the sliders in it, and I've heard people say then put a blob on the back where the piston pushes on the pad, is that right?

Hopefully next time I'll be able to slip the pads straight out without all this bother, but they're currently in a right state!

Cheers
O.

Owain

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Owain on 30 May 2010 02:51
Ah cheers, that's well worth knowing. No doubt I would've sat there for hours smashing the bar to pieces without that handy little nugget Wink

Owain

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Chelmsford

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Owain on 31 May 2010 21:37
Right, calipers have had about five coats of Hammerite now, so they're looking smooth and nice enough. Bit of an improvement methinks. Before:



And after:



Far from perfect but should stop them getting caked in crap again any time soon. Wheels back on and all looks very nice:



At some point I'll probably pick up some spare calipers and refurb them properly, but alas time and skill are not on my side right now. Does anyone know how you go about removing the entire caliper from the car? It seems to have a steel brake line going into it, I'm only used to brakes with rubber hoses attaching them.

The blister on my thumb from sanding down the calipers is close to rupturing.

Had a quick drive to make sure all was working, they're okay but I definitely need to bleed the brakes out this week, the air/water mixture that seems to be filling the hydraulics doesn't exactly seem to be meeting the 5.1 standard.

Everything under the car is completely horrible and covered in rust, so I'm really dreading playing with the suspension this week. If anyone wants to come over and do it all for me, I'll happily provide you a cup of tea.

Owain

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Owain on 02 Jun 2010 01:56
The missus is out at Pizza Express - sounds like an excuse for some carage. Gear linkages and strut bolts also arrived (cheers Swampy and Miles(?)).

It's important at this point that you nearly schoolboy and fit the strut brace first, which would be sitting right where you need to get in order to do the linkages. Realise just in time, move along. So these linkages:

What a monsterous pain in the ass they are. New ones - brilliant. Well machined, easy to fit. Old ones - rotting old European tat. The two smaller ones were bad enough, but managed to get those out by ramming a 10mm (of course) spanner underneath them to pop them off.

But holy mumma, that long one. One end has nothing to lever against, the other end has very little access. Not only that, but if you're lucky there'll be a big alarming bang at one point. We'll leave that be, and hope for the best.

Eventually I managed to remove the nearside end by grabbing it with an adjustable spanner and twisting it off. I then unscrewed the rod and after generally swearing and bleeding a lot managed to loop the end of a ring spanner over the other end and pull it back on itself until it popped off, allowing my arm to scrape further along something sharp.

Eventually got the little shitters on, so thought I'd check how the stick felt now.

Oh good, it's flopped over backwards and just wobbles around like a p*ssed-up tramp. Ideal. Let's have a look at that.

Turns out the always-harmless bang that came from the gearbox was simply some kind of thing, that another thing goes into. I had to remove one end of the linkage then dick around a bit, but managed to get it in without any bother. Have another go with the stick, all now seems fine. Not as much of an improvement as I'd have hoped if I'm honest.

Not really sure why I took a picture, but still - it's something shiny.



I've devised a new scale for measuring these jobs - it's called the BS, or the Ballache Scale. To estimate it, you multiply its [D]ifficulty on a scale of 1-10 by its [C]ost, also on a scale of 1-10. Multiply that by the amount of [T]ime taken for the job in hours, and you've got its BS value. Ideally a job would be Simplicity 1, Cost 1 and Time 1, giving you a BS of 1, which is as good as they get. An engine swap, for another example would be cost 6 maybe, simplicity 8 and time maybe 8 - so that'd be a BS of 384. I'll reserve fitting superchargers and turbos for the 10's.

So for the linkages I'd say difficulty 3, cost 2 and about an hour's work. That's a BS of 6. Not bad going at all.

Next for the strut brace, simple simple job except for the holes not quite lining up on the OMP brace, but then that's just par for the course when it comes to aftermarket parts. Because of this you'll never be entirely sure whether you're tightening the bolts or simply cutting a new thread - either way it's going in so let's not lose too much sleep there.



All done - C3, D1, T1 = BS of 3. Let's take the car for a quick drive to see how it goes.

Holy cow, now that's what I call understeer.

Nearly managed to spin on a roundabout, which is always excellent. Massive understeer which then caught and sent me back the other way, just managed to steer it back on course. Yes the roads are pretty wet today and my tyres are only budgets but still, fresh pants all round. To be fair to the car I've never had it in the proper wet yet and it's still on the standard suspension, so we'll reserve judgement for now. However if my new suspension isn't on before Oulton Park in a couple of weeks I'll be taking that brace back off.

Tomorrow I should be eventually getting a new clutch cable after the couriers ECP use "couldn't find my house" so decided it best to just not say anything and wait five days for me to call them up, despite ECP having both my home and mobile phone numbers.

There's only room for one idiot round here.

Owain

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Chelmsford

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Owain on 02 Jun 2010 01:58
Oh, and water likes to pour through the sunroof.

Bang on.

Owain

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Chelmsford

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Owain on 02 Jun 2010 15:03
I'll give the gear linkages another chance, could well be because I'd been driving a new Astra all day and so was comparing it to that.

I'll take a look at the seals but might just be getting the sunroof welded up anyway some point soon. And yes, as a top strut brace shouldn't really cause understeer I'm banking on it being tyres and suspension that's the issue for now, both of which should be addressed soon enough.

Owain

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Chelmsford

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Owain on 02 Jun 2010 15:13
I noticed there way a difference, but couldn't see that it'd matter? Surely as long as the sliders and bits are all in the pads can't come out, they're just in the other way up.

Or is this an issue...?

Owain

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Chelmsford

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Owain on 02 Jun 2010 15:23
Heh, glad to hear it's serving some purpose at least Wink

It also provides light relief from learning the C++ programming language and trying to get TasBooks to interface with an Oracle database, which is what I'm meant to be doing...

Owain

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Chelmsford

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Owain on 02 Jun 2010 15:33
Okay, so let's get this right. The two "beds" on the caliper that the pads slide on - I noticed one is wider than the other. The wider side I put the springs against as it seemed the more sensible choice (as it meant the spring was against the bed not a rough bit of cast iron). The narrower side I put in the new sliders.

So you're saying that's right, but the calipers are basically on the wrong sides of the car, ie the sliders should be at the bottom, not the top?

I spotted the notch and made sure those lined up.

Which cable can you disconnect? Gotta be honest I wasn't too sure about disconnecting stuff so left it all connected. There's a lot of travel in the pedal now but I'm planning on bleeding it all through anyway. What cable can I disconnect, and how?

Owain

Forum Nob (2874)

Chelmsford

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Owain on 02 Jun 2010 15:49
If by "pad carrier" you mean the front cast iron lump then yes, that's all I removed.

Not really sure what you mean about the cable but I'll take a look. Cheers.

Owain

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Chelmsford

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