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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Anglo-French Alliance   Sat Feb 02, 2013 7:05 pm

Although I was planning to say hello here anyway, I received a very kind invite and thought it rude not to say hello. I'm very pro bangernomics and taking a DIY approach to keeping a sturdy old steed on the road for as little as possible.

My 1980 Princess, soon to be my daily again. Purchase price: 450 taxed (just) and tested.
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My 1998 Rover Maestro, which is currently my daily but needs a few bits and bobs sorted. Purchase price: 450 taxed and tested.
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Previously, I owned a 1985 VW Polo, cracking little car and one that I was going a long way to personalise. Sadly, circumstances forced me to sell this car recently.
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I'll add more info about how I've saved cash and done jobs properly on a shoe string budget at a later date.


Last edited by Vulgalour on Wed Feb 20, 2013 8:55 pm; edited 1 time in total
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TechSupport
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sat Feb 02, 2013 7:11 pm

Quote :
I'll add more info about how I've saved cash and done jobs properly on a shoe string budget at a later date.

Looking forward to reading more. Friends

I have moved this here which is where it's better placed. Thumb

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stereosound
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sat Feb 02, 2013 7:28 pm

Hey great to see you found us Clap

Cant wait to see you add more to this thread i know the others members will be amazed and how tight fisted you can be (I do mean that in a nice way)

Its such a shame you no longer have the Polo after all the hard work you put into it but im equally glad you never let the Princess die i take my hat off to you sir :CP:

Don't be shy show everybody your skills I have seen them already and they are great Thumb

Oh yeh and welcome to the Forum Welcome
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macp
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sat Feb 02, 2013 7:57 pm

Excellent post the Maestro looks in really good order. My outlaws owned a princess which I loaned for a short while in between cars and I remember it being very comfy. Emerald green with black roof I think it was.
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sat Feb 02, 2013 7:59 pm

Cheers Very Happy The Maestro is likely only going to be with me until the end of the year, I think I'd be happier with a Maxi or an Allegro estate. I'm going to get some cosmetic bits and bobs sorted on the Maestro, a general service and just keep using it in the meantime, it's a monstrously reliable car and doesn't really want for anything, but it's not quite right for me unlike the Princess which feels like it was designed for me.
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macp
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sat Feb 02, 2013 8:05 pm

My mate had an MG Montego which I honestly thought was a fast car and well put together. One of his mates bought a Montego turbo and he was shown his N/A Montego was not quite as fast as he thought Laughing

My wife had an MG Metro which was a cool car but it was a little past its best unfortunately.Never let her down mind
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Joloke
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sat Feb 02, 2013 8:29 pm

Is it just me but BL/Rover seemed to make cars with styling that was out of sync with the time and missunderstood but decades later seem to have caught up with peoples tastes?

In the 70's their designs were misunderstood when 2nd hand in the 80's and 90's nobody wanted them but now you cant help but look at some of their designs and think how cool they look now Thumb

The Princess is one of those cars and the Maestro I think people gave them stick but they do seem to hold up well with age Thumb

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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 1:05 am

Mainly it's because their designs WERE out of date. The Princess, though made up until 1981, was a firmly 1970s design. The Maestro too, was a 1970s design but not allowed off the drawing board until the '80s. BL were a law unto themselves.

Oh, and the Maestro is up for grabs at 400 now because something more bangertastic has come along that I really want to buy.
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stereosound
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 1:10 am

Vulgalour wrote:
Oh, and the Maestro is up for grabs at 400 now because something more bangertastic has come along that I really want to buy.

Do Tell :Cun:

Only a few more post and you can advertise the Maestro here Thumb
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:47 pm

What I was thinking...
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:47 pm

...is that if I make a few...
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:47 pm

...more posts like this...
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:47 pm

...I'd be there...
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:48 pm

... in no time...
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:49 pm

Here's a picture of me fixing the Princess with the Maestro.
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:50 pm

That did a very respectable job of sorting the nose out, as you can see in this before and after comparison.

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That's my ten posts, and I'm now off to put an advert out Wink
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stereosound
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 2:23 pm

Vulgalour wrote:
That's my ten posts, and I'm now off to put an advert out Wink

That is a bit naughty :No:

But we will let you off and congrats on being our first new member to post a car for sale in the new look forum Clap
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 7:53 pm

To make up for my cheeky post bumping antics, I'd like to tell you a little story about the Princess, especially since today I got her ready for an MoT next week (if I can book one that soon).

2012 was rotten, I don't like to talk about it but often find I have to when related what's gone on. So when, on the way to the Princess' first MoT in my care, I managed to have an accident I wasn't best thrilled. I did make it to the MoT station and drove her home with no untoward noises or feeling to the drive to be had which made me feel confident she was repairable.

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I shan't revisit the details of the incident apart from to relate that it was a low speed impact into the back of a Ford Connect van. I came off much worse than the van driver did. There was a merry dance with the insurance company who wanted to write the car off due to being unable to get the parts or find details for straightening her to modern standards, so we cancelled the claim, keeping her off the write-off register and allowing me to keep the car. This was only in part a heart-over-head decision because I knew I had the means to get her fixed no matter how bad things looked.

Like many old cars, the Princess is easy to strip down so I could very quickly get the bent bumper off and the plastic trims to assess the damage. Not too pretty, but not too bad.
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Some of the damage I took out myself with just brute force, the bonnet I got straighter fairly easily. However, things were changing and not entirely in my favour so I had to get her transported to my parents because I had lost my house and my job but was determined not to lose the Princess too. We found that we had the tools - Maestro, ratchet strap, hammers - to actually make an attempt at straightening this all out.
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 8:01 pm

The damage is mostly superficial. The bonnet is bent, the front wing bent too and the valance. The biggest damage was the chassis leg which was bent but not kinked. With care, we used the strength of the Maestro to carefully ease the chassis leg and the front of the car back towards something like straight. It went all at once with a satisfying pwong noise. If you're going to attempt something like this, well... sensibly I'd say don't. However, if you're confident in your understanding of physics and panel beating, it's something you can attempt. Eventually, I will (in a not very Bangernomics approach) book this in at a proper bodyshop to be finished off properly.

Eventually, with some hammer work and trial fitting of the grille, things were getting more into shape properly. It was easily a full day's work doing it this way, but it cost nothing to achieve.
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I did a fair bit of work beating out the worst of the dents in the wing. This wing is salvagable and with a replacement costing around about 150 (if I want steel) or 60 (if I want badly fitting fibreglass) a full repair will likely be attempted.
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There was more work with hammers and pulling and pushing on various bits of the bodywork until I could get everything back together again. Eventually, she was looking much better for it.
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I wasn't happy enough with how the front end looked so I wanted to work some more on the dents, particularly the one on the bonnet that was forcing the corners to lift. Borrowed a slide hammer (with the red handle) from the neighbour and had my regular hammers on standby.
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Worked at the bonnet until it was better, if not perfect.
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Cleaned up the loose paint using a flapwheel we found in my brother's attic.
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Stuck some primer on it and then, unfortunately, more work got rained off.
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Sun Feb 03, 2013 8:05 pm

When the weather was better the next day, I got the nearest match of beige I could from Halfords and set to work tidying things up a bit.
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In person, it's a bit lumpy and the beige isn't a perfect match, but it's so much better than it was I'm happy enough. I've not used any filler at all because I'm planning more proper work on this corner and I don't want to have to undo filler work to dress dents and refill before proper paint. You can tell she's had a crash, but it looks a lot less serious than it did.
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So that's where we are. Today I've been doing pre-MoT checks and had to purchase a sidelight bulb thus far. I'm hoping she passes but I'm expecting to fail on something that I couldn't find on my drive at home. Trying to be realistic about it.
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ventorafred
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Thu Feb 14, 2013 9:02 am

Joloke wrote:
Is it just me but BL/Rover seemed to make cars with styling that was out of sync with the time and missunderstood but decades later seem to have caught up with peoples tastes?

In the 70's their designs were misunderstood when 2nd hand in the 80's and 90's nobody wanted them but now you cant help but look at some of their designs and think how cool they look now Thumb

The Princess is one of those cars and the Maestro I think people gave them stick but they do seem to hold up well with age Thumb

Ive always thought this
Glad Im nay the only one Friends
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Thu Feb 14, 2013 7:25 pm

Good luck with the test buddy

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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Thu Feb 14, 2013 7:33 pm

Did it pass ?
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Wed Feb 20, 2013 7:14 pm

Nice work on restoring the Princess, I can picture Terry Scott peering over the steering wheel Smile
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Vulgalour
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PostSubject: Re: Anglo-French Alliance   Wed Feb 20, 2013 8:54 pm

Unfortunately, I had to put the Princess' test on hold after being messed around with the local garage (they didn't want to test an old car, only modern stuff kthxbai) and the sale of the Maestro so I could get a more different car. For a mere 250 (plus some other costs to get it here from Wales), I now have this.
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It's a 1991 Citroen BX TGD 1.9 diesel. Sometimes, you have to take a bit of a gamble and this one, I think, will pay off. It has some rust issues, slightly worse than the Maestro in all honesty, but overall it's a better car for what I need and more comfortable too. I've spent the past few days removing stickers and vinyl and spending many, many hours with Farecla G3 and a Meguiers clay bar to get the paintwork something like again.
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I've got some wheel trims on the way to tidy up the wheels and I'm keeping an eye out for a second hand welding machine so I can fabricate the missing metal underneath the back end and deal with a couple of currently small holes around the bodywork in the usual rust spots. Overall, this is a very good car and since it's a diesel (no turbo) on a Bosch pump I can run it on veg oil for that true Bangernomic experience.

I still have to shampoo the seats and clean the headlining, but the interior is looking and smelling a lot fresher too thanks to liberal application of elbow grease and soapy water.
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My pedal box was broken, but that's returning tomorrow after someone offered to kindly weld it up for me, I may need a new throttle cable to fit everything properly as the clip broke after it was removed, but I might also have the bits and pieces to repair it without spending anything. February is a super-tight month for me financially, being self employed, so I don't have any money to spend at the moment but I will as the year progresses.

Guess I'll have to change the title of this thread now Wink
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