Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Jag XJ-S, 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, Jag XJ-S, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by Zelandeth »

Despite running around like a headless chicken for a large portion of the last few days I finally got an hour and a bit this afternoon to get some cleaning work done on the 2CV.

Windows all cleaned and the polishing has begun. First pass done on this side and the front now. Will want a bit more detail attention in a few spots and a load of wax, but we're getting there.

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At least the roof doesn't need to be polished because it's not metal!

If the weather cooperates it should be pretty much done tomorrow with a bit of luck.

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CitroJim
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, Jag XJ-S, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

Post by CitroJim »

That's looking very lovely Zel :) A vast improvement since I last saw it!

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

Post by Zelandeth »

Spot the difference...

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The photos flatter the finish a bit, but she's looking better I think.

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Annoyingly I've completely and utterly lost track of any of my wax. So I'll need to pop out to get some more tomorrow. I suspect I know where it is, under the landslide that happened a week or so back in the garage...so I'm not going digging for it in there just now! Buying new is the easiest option.

In other news, think I've picked out the carpet which I'll be using in the Invacar.

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Should look pretty understated once in place, especially once there's a little bit of wear in the picture. These tiles are £1.99 each, so reckon I should be able to do the whole lot for less than £30. Being in smaller squares should actually make getting things to fit easier I reckon, even if the finish won't be quite so seamless.

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

Post by mickthemaverick »

Looks lovely, Is that finished by hand or with a mop Zel? :)

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

Post by CitroJim »

Gosh! The 2CV looks like new Zel :D Excellent work!

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

Post by Zelandeth »

mickthemaverick wrote:
19 Sep 2020, 22:56
Looks lovely, Is that finished by hand or with a mop Zel? :)
Bit of both. 2CVs are fiddly so don't lend themselves too well to the mop...plus the ridges in the bonnet are just asking to rub though the paint. The only bits I used the mop for were the bootlid and offside rear wheel arch as they were particularly heavily oxidised. The rest was done by hand.

-- -- --

This morning I went out and grabbed a new pot of wax to replace the one buried somewhere in the back of the garage, then got to work.

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I'm not a professional automotive detailer, but I think this has come out looking reasonably presentable.

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In addition to the obvious polish and wax action, the glass has all been cleaned inside and out and the outside of all the windows (but NOT the windscreen) have been treated with Rain-Ex. I don't like this on windscreens as it has without exception just resulted in wipers that smear and judder so I keep it well clear. It's great for the other glass and mirrors though. It's only a theory, but I reckon that the way it makes water just bead and run off helps keep the windows cleaner for longer as well. I've never actually conducted any proper tests to see if that's true or not.

Hoping that if my schedule co-operates tomorrow I'll get her dropped back off with her owner. If not (and it's looking like it will be quite a hectic day) that will be pushed back to Tuesday, and I'll take the opportunity to apply an extra coat of wax.

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

Post by CitroJim »

Zelandeth wrote:
20 Sep 2020, 21:28
I'm not a professional automotive detailer, but I think this has come out looking reasonably presentable.
Having seen the car this morning Zel, I'd say it looks utterly stunning, you have excelled yourself! 'Reasonably presentable' is the understatement of the month so far...

Remember I saw it both as it was and as it now is... The difference is night and day :)

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

Post by admiral51 »

Where is the back of the queue to lend Zel a car for a few days :rofl2:

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

Post by Zelandeth »

We had a little bit of excitement this morning while I was putting the Xantia in for the MOT in that the 2CV decided that mashed against the floor was a good place for the throttle pedal to sit - irrespective of whether my foot was on it or not.

Didn't take long to figure out why...

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That's the throttle return spring which should be hooked up between the throttle linkage on the carb and the fan cowling up front.

Cable ties were deployed to get me home.

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I did experiment with the spring a bit to see if I could bend a new loop in the end, but irrespective of whether heat was used or not it just kept snapping off...and a new spring is only £3.50, so it's not worth spending too much time on really.

So we went back to the cable tie solution for the time being, albeit slightly more tidily routed than the original one.

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After that the car was driven back over to and reunited with its owner.

I believe the next patient that we might be seeing here is an early AX which is refusing to idle properly at the moment.

Despite the slight excitement with the throttle setup on the 2CV flying to bits the Xantia has *finally* gone successfully through the MOT so is once more roadworthy. With the 2CV back at home I was able to fit everything back off the road. If it were still here something would have had to be moved outside or put behind the Jag on the lawn. The plan is to extend the driveway or to put a grid down to give us more space - not least because currently getting in or out of the garage with a car is a major faff.

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I noticed when getting into the Xantia this morning that the rear wiper blade had completely disintegrated...but knew I had a genuine replacement in my parts stash so swapped that over. Wouldn't usually be worthy of note but for the fact that it's actually got a Citroen logo printed on it.

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I do wonder how much of a markup that added!

I do have the trim for the end of the arm but it's not a very good fit so lives in the glove box as I've always been afraid it would vanish if I left it on the wiper arm.

Had honestly forgotten how rapid this car is once the boost arrives...

Few things still on the to do list for it.

[] Reset Activa system ride height, as unsurprisingly with the whole front end pretty much having been apart it's gone awry and the offside front is sitting about an inch lower than it should.

[] She's due a timing belt.

[] Rear brake discs & pads.

[] Do *something* about the paint.

We'll get moving on this lot soon hopefully.

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

Post by CitroJim »

Zel, delighted the Xantia now has an MoT =D> :-D

Feel free to book some of my time to assist with levelling ;) I warn you, it's a PITA of a job :twisted:

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

Post by mickthemaverick »

Zelandeth wrote:
21 Sep 2020, 22:09

I believe the next patient that we might be seeing here is an early AX which is refusing to idle properly at the moment.
With that thought in mind I have been looking at one of my subscribed YouTube sites and found this. Probably teaching granny to suck eggs but I found it interesting as long as you ignore the drawl:


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

Post by Gibbo2286 »

Your parking on the lawn dilemma Zel can be less of a problem by rolling out some chain link fencing to stop the cars sinking in.

We used it in the REME desert workshop in Egypt on the soft sand.

Our problem was working shirtless and having to drop down underneath for something we got branded with a diamond pattern. :)

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

Post by Zelandeth »

Gibbo2286 wrote:
22 Sep 2020, 16:05
Your parking on the lawn dilemma Zel can be less of a problem by rolling out some chain link fencing to stop the cars sinking in.

We used it in the REME desert workshop in Egypt on the soft sand.

Our problem was working shirtless and having to drop down underneath for something we got branded with a diamond pattern. :)
That's not a bad idea actually.

To be honest sinking into the ground really isn't the issue, the ground here is like reinforced concrete. Just would be nice to not tear the grass up. We've got our eyes on what's basically a 21st century version of the chain link fence idea. It's a green plastic grid which is laid down just the same. Just being green it will blend in far better once the grass grows up through it. One hazard of the chain link setup would be that if any bit got damaged you could end up with a bit of wire sticking out waiting to stab either a tyre or you, the plastic grid should be safer in that regard.

Longer term we'd like to get the whole area paved really so we could just have a nice big area where we could park vehicles as we wished and I could actually just *leave* access to the garage clear. I'd love to be able to get the Invacar in/out without requiring 15 minutes of automotive tetris...Especially during the school rush when you basically can't move anything.

-- -- --

Having been out for a proper drive now I can vouch for the fact that these have hugely improved the Xantia.

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For a start the slight vibration at 70 has totally gone. Secondly the grip (which was already impressive because Activa) is now absolutely ridiculous. Thirdly they're massively more compliant than the old Michelins which they replaced. It's made the ride far better and vastly reduced the tendency for the car to crash over sharp ridges in the road surface (which has always been the biggest weakness of the oliopneumatic suspension).

Will be curious to see how it is once we've got a new set of spheres on as I know the rears in particular are very tired.

I had forgotten how annoying the creak from the offside front was though...really might need to put some energy into seeing if we can resolve that. It wouldn't be so bad if it weren't for the fact that the car is so quiet and refined otherwise that it puts many moderns to shame...it just makes the strut that does a passable impression of a creaky door in a haunted house seem so much louder.

Something I was particularly pleased to see at the MOT though was the result of the emission test. We've got pretty much every bit of paperwork for this car, and we're pretty certain that this is the original 26 year and 140K mile cat.

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Oh...and this was running on six month old fuel as well.

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

Post by CitroJim »

Wow! Clean as a whistle Zel :D

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

Post by Zelandeth »

I had reason to want to "get a move on" this afternoon. Courtesy of a pharmacy fouling up dispensing of medication to a friend who's on palliative end of life care due to cancer.

Yeah...the Activa is definitely a good car to grab the keys to in a situation like that. I'm not sure if it's just because I've not driven it for a while, the fact that there's more grip available with the new tyres, the fact it's now so smooth & quiet making it seem more effortless or if I've actually got more power courtesy of a new exhaust...but that car can't half move when asked, and feels even quicker than I remember.

Much to the dismay to the BMW X5 M which tried to undertake me on the sliproad onto the A5 coming out of Bletchley. They definitely weren't expecting a somewhat shabby looking (I NEED to do something about the paint) 26 year old Citroen to out drag them!

Of course it's in the corners that the real time can be saved in an Activa...but this one doesn't lose anything in a straight line either.

It has highlighted another thing for the to do list though. Now we've eliminated the torque induced play in the nearside suspension which was causing the car to pull right under acceleration, it's showing that there's a little in the offside as well I think. You don't feel it under load, but as you come off the power if you've got your foot well down you feel the car shift very slightly to the right. So I reckon the same bush(s) on the right will probably be wanting some attention at some point in the not too distant future.

It's not bad, and I'm not even 100% sure I'm not just imagining it (especially with the wind being a little blustery at the time), but it's going on the whiteboard under "keep an eye on" for now.

If we do wind up having to pull the offside apart I think some careful investigation will be done to see if we can find the source of that blasted creak. BL Autos said the ARB bush was the cause of that, though when I've looked myself it's always sounded like it's from the strut itself - which also renders it pretty much impossible to sort it I'm right. It hasn't got noticeably worse since I got the car in 2017 so I'm not worried about it being a sign of impending doom... it's just really annoying! Especially with how otherwise ridiculously quiet and refined the car is.