Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Tell us your ongoing tales and experiences with your French car here. Post pictures of your car here as well.

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 05 Aug 2018, 16:26

There's actually quite a lot of flow through the heater. Even though the fan is currently dead, the tiny fascia vents direct quite a breeze to the driver's face when driving.

The biggest issue really is with the drainage for the vents - or rather the complete lack of any at the design stage I think.

Thankfully as far as I'm aware the rust is mostly combined to that upper area. The only for further down is just the usual bit at the front edge of the cab floor which had already been patched up. While that's not pretty, it's solid. So will be leaving that well alone for now. The rust here does go a fair bit further down below the bonnet, but doesn't *look* to have attempted to spread beyond the heater box.

A Kurust and white paint session is definitely on the cards asap to at least try to slow the spread down. If I can put off throwing huge resources at that for a bit it should be competing with less priorities when I come to sort it.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 05 Aug 2018, 18:45

Very little to show for today, just too hot. Plus the moment I started working on stuff under the van I immediately attracted the wrath of several thousand ants. Again.

Internally I've removed a couple of uprights around the kitchen cupboards. I want to rebuild the structure myself, so no having a poorly secured bit in the way will help.

I need to start thinking about rerouting services now. So time to make some sense of the mess under the back.

Under the bathroom we have this...
IMG_20180805_172556.jpg
Which makes sense, a DC feed for the toilet flush system.

Then this load of spaghetti further over (roughly under where the fridge sits).
IMG_20180805_172600.jpg
There's a 230V mains lead (fridge), a 12V feed (also fridge), the fresh water tank level sensor...and a further 230V and 12V line, the purposes of are currently unclear. In the absence of data to the contrary they will be routed into the living area and "parked" in a junction box until it becomes clear where they should go.

I do wonder if they might be more stuff to do with the fridge...know some vans have interlocks to prevent the fridge being run on gas when the engine is running etc...

Annoyingly I discovered that a new set of hole saws is something I need - approximately 15 minutes after everywhere closed for the day because it's Sunday.

I've located a camper and caravan specialist not far from here who should have all the pipework and fittings I need to get the plumbing and gas systems back up and running, so will hopefully get out to pick that lot up tomorrow.

Also spent fifteen minutes just walking around the van with a screwdriver checking everything to see whether it was screwed on. At least 50% of the fasteners holding trim strips etc on weren't tight, though they will be coming off in due course anyway when I re-seal all the joints behind said strips. In the interim I'm slightly more sure stuff won't fall off not though...

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 06 Aug 2018, 23:15

Well I wasted two hours running around trying to find gas fittings today. Looks like I may have to resort to buying them online - precisely what I was trying to avoid.

Nevertheless, I did get most of the plumbing stuff needed, so now have roughly 60% of the cold water plumbing done. Rest of that and the hot water tomorrow hopefully.

When turning into the drive we had a complete loss of throttle response. Well then, I'll bet the screwed I wedged into the throttle arm when the cable retaining bush cracked has now fallen out.
IMG_20180806_201826.jpg
Yep!

I did have a rummage around to see if I had anything that would elegantly solve the problem, sadly not. So we went after it with a larger bolt, some nice wide washers and a lock nut.
IMG_20180806_203926.jpg
I did get it to sit a bit better after this by the way. It should be impossible for this to fall out again now.

A compact but perfectly formed engine if ever there was one...
IMG_20180806_201555.jpg
IMG_20180806_201536.jpg
Hopefully tomorrow I'll have all the supply side water systems up and running.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Hell Razor5543 » 06 Aug 2018, 23:57

I was wondering if the 'spare' 12V/230V supplies would have been for a freezer? My Mum (who lives on a narrow boat) has a 12V freezer (which can be charged from the engine or the solar panel), and there are multi-fuel freezers available.

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 07 Aug 2018, 11:37

Not sure, the fridge does have a little freezer compartment, and is already set up for three way operation.

It looks to be factory based on the conduit it's in, but that's not a huge help...

Will wire up what's reasonably obvious then go hunting what's not working.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Pug_XUD_KeenAmateur » 07 Aug 2018, 11:38

what lovely access !

I'm not aware of how plumbing and gas fittings are different, but I guess you tried people like Pirtek and your usual national Plumbers Merchants?

Good luck with your Plumbing! :lol:

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by deuchebleu » 07 Aug 2018, 21:37

This is turning into a really enjoyable thread. Thanks for sharing it. A couple of photos back it appears the floor of the van is just untreated wooden boards. In fact they look just like decking boards. I'm not familiar with campervan construction but is this normal. Shouldn't they have at least weathered a bit considering its age.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Hell Razor5543 » 07 Aug 2018, 21:58

If a campervan owner was planning a reclusive holiday, away from other people, having a fridge AND a freezer makes sense, as it can allow them to stay out for longer before they have to top up on supplies.

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 07 Aug 2018, 22:35

The floor is usually a composite construction. Thin wooden board with an insulating core.

The rear third or so of mine has been replaced, presumably due to damp issues. The decking is far from ideal due to weight and poor insulation properties - however it's serviceable for now. I'll probably replace it with something more appropriate in a couple of years.

I confess to having totally forgotten about Pirtek...will give them a shout tomorrow.

I've got a load of pipe, the manifold, a regulator and the equipment to connect to the gas supply...just missing the blasted unions!

I managed to find a set of instructions for a Thetford Cassette toilet similar to ours yesterday which has demystified it's wiring at least. The cord to it has four wires. Brown, blue and two black - one with a white trace. The brown and blue are a normal 12V DC supply. The black ones are only needed on a non pressurised water system, and would be used to tell the water pump to run. Not needed in my case as my water pump is automatic. So wiring that back in should be nice and simple.

Something else to tick off the question mark list.

I have got most of the supply side plumbing in now. Unfortunately discovered when feeding it water for the first time that the water heater leaks. Looks to be a perished O-ring at the heat exchanger to valve block join...will see if I can find a replacement tomorrow.

Speaking of the water heater...I solved the hose connector issue.

Solution was a garden tap connector! With the 1/2" adaptor many come with these days, it's a perfect fit!
IMG_20180807_202218.jpg
Hopefully more exciting stuff to report tomorrow. Today was mostly standing on my head routing pipes and tightening endless hose clips... nothing exciting, but hugely time consuming.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 08 Aug 2018, 23:29

Today included a lot of wasted time.

The cause? This blasted thing.
IMG_20180808_162759.jpg
After finally figuring out how to get water lines connected to it yesterday, it immediately proved to have serious incontinence problems.

Sorting that took me a significant amount of time, not least because of these stupid excuses for connectors.
IMG_20180808_181121.jpg
Seriously, what was wrong with a proper compression fitting?!? The scratches on the pipe suggests I'm not the first one to fight with this one. Eventually though, I got the two problem joints water tight.

So was able to get the water system properly pressurised and bled through, which went pretty well. Couple of weeping connections at the kitchen taps, but nothing major. Right up to the point where the pump stopped pumping. It's pulling air in somewhere, I suspect from a perished seal... it's got an appointment with the instant gasket tomorrow, or the pump will be getting replaced. We're off on holiday on Friday afternoon, so not got time to faff around. The water heater I had to deal with as I couldn't get one locally!

What else? Got the wiring pulled through into the back of the van (yay, no more wires dangling out the back!), which has allowed me to get the fridge properly wired in again. So it's now set up with a mains supply and a 12V supply that only goes live when the engine is running (and a permanent 12V feed to the ignition circuit for the gas). I've not tested it on 12V yet, but the idle speed does drop slightly when it's turned on so it's definitely pulling power at least....and I know it works just fine on the mains, so we should be laughing.

Last task for the day was to make a start on the bathroom. I didn't want to get too involved in there early on because all the water supply hoses run through there so I didn't want stuff getting in my way. The shower tray is now in, likewise the base for the toilet. So should get that fully fitted tomorrow, and then start sealing things up.

Last updated is getting the gas appliances connected back up again. Hoping I'll have time to refit the hob too...though we're probably not going to need that too much this weekend.

Tomorrow is going to be a long day I suspect!

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Pug_XUD_KeenAmateur » 09 Aug 2018, 20:40

Good luck with it Zel, and happy Holidaying!

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 09 Aug 2018, 23:23

That's been a manic day.

The end result?
IMG_20180809_212841.jpg
...well that end looks much the same as before. Save for the small detail of the indicator light now working.
IMG_20180809_230030.jpg
I'll be thankful for that tomorrow I reckon.

Back here things have changed quite a bit.
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Difference being that everything you can see there now works.

The air conditioner was going to be taken back out...until it became quite apparent that it wasn't in any way interested in coming back out of the gap I'd wedged it in.

Gas is limited to the oven and water heater, though both seem to be running perfectly. I do have a CO detector in the van, have triple checked all the gas fittings, and it will only be turned on when needed anyway. Fridge isn't connected up to gas, but we won't need that this weekend anyway as we've got mains on site and DC when on the move.

Bathroom is still a bit of a state.
IMG_20180809_211959.jpg
While it looks a state, it all works now at least. Shower tray was waiting to be cleaned there, van was tilted the wrong way when I took the photo!

Hooking the drainage up was fun, nothing like rolling around underneath a vehicle when it's tipping it down. Still wasn't really that difficult as I was essentially just reconnecting stuff where it used to be.

Have also got the feed to the 12V outlet on the dash sorted out (just needed a replacement fuse) as I'll be wanting that for the Satnav tomorrow.

Will just be giving the van itself a once over tomorrow, then we'll be off.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Hell Razor5543 » 10 Aug 2018, 14:43

I wonder if there is enough clear space on the roof to consider mounting a solar panel? My Mum has a panel on her boat that is trickle charging her service batteries.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Pug_XUD_KeenAmateur » 10 Aug 2018, 19:11

very neat, looks like a proper little 'home from home'

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Lada Riva, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth » 10 Aug 2018, 22:09

Well...220 miles later, we're actually on holiday in it.

I don't *think* anything else fell off on the way here.

Also had the first real hill test as there was a 17% gradient on the way here. Third was out of the question, but there was plenty of headroom in second... wouldn't have fancied trying that in the last T25 I drove...
IMG_20180810_194212.jpg
Fingers crossed my jury rigged services hold out for the next few days!