The Old Lady

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ROVER-25X
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Re: The Old Lady

#16 Post by ROVER-25X » Tue Feb 20, 2018 7:03 pm

Seems a faff to work on, very interesting how different all the parts look like and fit, great read up mate. :D

Fair enough on the LED's, I have done loads and stripped switches and speedos apart to directly solder them,
I used Warm White on my last MGF to emulate incandescent bulbs but more vivid and brighter.




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The 25X (2001 ROVER 25 1.4 Impression S, fate TBD)
The CX8 (1997 ROVER Cabriolet 1.6 K-Series, Resto Project)
The 25XD (2004 ROVER 25 2.0TD, Track Car ?)
The Parts Bin (2001 ROVER 25 1.6 S)
The ASTRA-DX (2012 VAUXHALL ASTRA 1.7CDTi, Daily Eco Driver)

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Re: The Old Lady

#17 Post by Vulgalour » Wed Feb 21, 2018 2:05 am

That's super bright! I prefer the glow of an old 2 bar fire ;) Now, old fashioned 80s digital dashboards, that's a different thing entirely, I'd love to build one of those for the Princess.
Current Fleet:
1980 Austin Princess 2 1700 HL
1994 Rover 414 SLi

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Re: The Old Lady

#18 Post by Vulgalour » Wed Feb 21, 2018 5:26 pm

Not a big update today, but a good one. I'm not very well so I'm sat here bundled up in warm things and shall be having a lovely fresh mug of coffee shortly as a reward for today's efforts.

First thing we did was investigate the earth problem. After testing with the multimeter and a spare jump lead cable (good call those that suggested it), we found that the issue was simply a bad earth in general. By fitting a second more substantial cable earth to a cleaned up earth point, all systems operated optimally. This was a pleasantly easy fix. The battery tray/overflow bottle bracket wasn't part of the problem, the problem seems to be the old braided earth strap just isn't working very well at all anymore.
Image20180221-01 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

Next was to remove the dashboard. Annoyingly, this was going quite smoothly until the little release clip for the speedo cable snapped clean off. I might have to buy yet another one of these, the grey plastic end on them seems incredibly fragile. Even more annoying since this one had absolutely nothing wrong with it. I might be able to jerry rig something up to keep it locked in place using the old piece that broke off and some tape or something until I can get a replacement, we'll see. If need be I'll set the sat nav up so I don't end up accidentally speeding if the cable won't plug back in.
Image20180221-02 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

I was hoping to get a few more miles on the car before taking the dashboard out to check that the test wiring worked. I'm going to have to be happy enough with the short time testing it we have managed because one problem with the lack of illumination in the dash was a wire that hadn't crimped properly.
Image20180221-03 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

Mike went through all the wires and soldered them, then wrapped them, to keep it all safe and secure. On retesting two bulbs still weren't illuminating even though the circuits and the bulbs tested okay. Specifically, main beam tell tale and right hand cluster illumination.
Image20180221-04 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

Hmm... one of the ongoing issues I've had with every old car is having to wiggle bulbs to make them work...
Image20180221-05 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

BINGO! So, electrical problems are now resolved. All I have to do is apply a small amount of foil tape to the bulbs to take up the slack in the holders and we should then have full dashboard illumination. The carburettor had the squelch pot topped up but the float still seems to be stuck, if I were feeling better I would have tackled that today. Likewise the bulbs and dashboard refitting. To be honest I was feeling too grotty to do more and didn't want to break something due to be fuzzy headed so called it quits.

Still, it's progress. Easy to sort out now, I hope.
Current Fleet:
1980 Austin Princess 2 1700 HL
1994 Rover 414 SLi

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Re: The Old Lady

#19 Post by crepello » Wed Feb 21, 2018 5:49 pm

Regarding SU floats: Once, mine sprang a leak and sank! This was a plastic one. Happy enough when guzzling at motorway speeds, but hit traffic and it would soon over-fuel and overflow.

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Re: The Old Lady

#20 Post by ROVER-25X » Thu Feb 22, 2018 9:39 pm

I snapped the speedo cable clip on my ROVER 111 too so I know how much of a pain that is.

Glad your fixing all the gremlins though.
The 25X (2001 ROVER 25 1.4 Impression S, fate TBD)
The CX8 (1997 ROVER Cabriolet 1.6 K-Series, Resto Project)
The 25XD (2004 ROVER 25 2.0TD, Track Car ?)
The Parts Bin (2001 ROVER 25 1.6 S)
The ASTRA-DX (2012 VAUXHALL ASTRA 1.7CDTi, Daily Eco Driver)

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Re: The Old Lady

#21 Post by Vulgalour » Sun Feb 25, 2018 6:40 pm

Right then, more problem solving has happened. The carb overfuelling issue was a stuck float needle. Once unstuck, carb is now behaving as well as a single SU ever does. The dash as all put back together and everything that should work, does work, with the exception of the broken speedo cable.
Image

Went for a drive and remembered Mike had his dashcam in his 75 Tourer so I finally got a video of the Princess in action that doesn't look like it was recorded with a vegetable.
https://youtu.be/Clzu9Hc_d28

Yes, I know a couple of bulbs are out. The indicator bulb randomly started working the day after and on investigating the outer brake light that's out I've found it's completely stuck in the holder. The inner brake light that's out on the other side is probably a similar issue and both are probably caused by corrosion with the car being parked up for ages while problems have been addressed. Normal old car stuff really. Didn't do too badly on the drive in the video though, I didn't have the sat nav on me so was guessing my speed based on engine note and gear selected and I didn't once break the speed limit!

Today being gorgeous weather and tools being got together I decided I should reinstall the stainless waist trim that I removed shortly after buying the car several years ago. I'd removed the trim to deal with rust and peeling vinyl and couldn't then find suitable clips to reinstall it. Then the car threw an awful lot of problems at me, life happened, etc. They never got reinstalled, until today! There's 18 trim clips to install for the three trim pieces and they're rivetted on, I rely on my trusty Wilkinsons hand rivetter for this, one of my better tool purchases over the years.
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The nose on the rivetter was too big to fit into the clip so I improvised with a small nut that served as the perfect adaptor so that I could get the clips rivetted in place properly.
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After rather a lot of effort since these were new clips rather than rusty old ones and it was FREEZING today, despite the lovely sunshine and lack of wind, I had all three trim pieces reinstalled. There's still loads of cosmetic work to do, obviously, but it was nice to get this bit of brightwork back on the car rather than seeing lots of trim holes.
Image

I also replaced the bodged spare wheel strap which is perished and has been held together with a pin for as long as I've had the car. I've had a replacement strap in great condition for a few years and it's a simple case of undoing a 13mm bolt to swap, I just never got around to it.
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I've been using a sat nav as speedo while waiting for my new cable to arrive. The new cable arrived today but when I opened the box not only was it broken, it wasn't new, which I wasn't pleased with. Then, when I tried to remove the sat nav from the screen today the sucker clamp fell apart so I had to improvise. Worked surprisingly well!
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A rubbing noise I thought I had is actually the dashboard vibrating occasionally and another noise I didn't recognise is wind on the gutter rails. Other than that, the car is performing suspiciously well so I'm fully engaged in new-to-me car mode and being over-cautious about every new smell, sound and sensation since the Princess is now officially my daily driver so I can attempt to shake out all the niggles before the MoT in April.
Current Fleet:
1980 Austin Princess 2 1700 HL
1994 Rover 414 SLi

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Re: The Old Lady

#22 Post by Vulgalour » Mon Feb 26, 2018 3:21 pm

Day... 2 or 3 of using it daily now and things are steadily improving, which is nice. Dashboard controls have all woken up properly now, heater is lovely and toasty and the interior is staying nice and dry, this is all good stuff.

Driver's door is still annoying me, there's definitely a knack to it. The hinge pins I have might not be the ones I need to replace though since it looks like it might be the skinny pins that have play, not the fat ones. I'm hoping to get the door off this weekend to investigate properly since it will be easier to investigate the hinge with the door removed.

I suspect the car is running a little lean. We did have to adjust things to compensate for the cone filter and I haven't adjusted it back and even though it has been very cold today, a little choke was needed all the time to stop the car being chuntery at idle. It could also just be stale fuel, I put some fresh in today and that did seem to perk things up a bit so before I fiddle with things too much I'm going to work on waking the systems up instead.

On my way back home today, setting off from a junction briskly (because it's one where you have to) the boot decided to fly open. Queue flashing of lights from person behind me and me pulling into a layby to shut the boot again. It isn't the first time the Princess has done this, last time it did it with a boot full of shopping. Normally locking the boot stops it doing it, but the boot was locked this time so I guess it needs further adjustment somewhere.

I also noticed on pulling into our street that there was what sounded like a slightly grumbly disc or front pad. The brakes didn't feel particularly broken or off in any way so I'm wondering if it's just a little surface rust or similar from the car being stood a while, or maybe some dirt. I couldn't see anything readily apparent, nothing is hot and the car isn't pulling to one side under braking, but I'll get the wheel off and have a look at some point soon. I've never actually done anything with the front brakes on this car (other than bleeding them for routine maintenance) as I've never needed to, but they've never offered cause for concern before.

It is a harder car to live with than the Rover, that much is for sure. There are some benefits, people generally give me space where in the Rover they can bully a bit and the Princess is big enough that I never feel particularly vulnerable. The only exception is parking, the Princess is a tough old thing to haul in and out of supermarket parking spaces, especially with the lack of power steering, so low speed maneuvers have to be done slowly and with effort, especially so since it has a gigantic turning circle. Not everyone has patience with this. It's also weird getting used to first for only setting off and second for pretty much everything else, the gearing is very oddly spaced compared to more modern stuff and definitely aimed more at motorway loping than stop-start traffic. I'd like a fifth gear.

Overall I'm happy enough. I'm not sure how many miles exactly I've done since getting everything working again because of the duff speedo, I'd guess it's about 60 or so by now.
Current Fleet:
1980 Austin Princess 2 1700 HL
1994 Rover 414 SLi

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Re: The Old Lady

#23 Post by ROVER-25X » Mon Feb 26, 2018 10:59 pm

Do you think there was some moisture causing electrical faults and the reason it has 'woken up' is the
daily use of the car and the heater drying it out ?
The 25X (2001 ROVER 25 1.4 Impression S, fate TBD)
The CX8 (1997 ROVER Cabriolet 1.6 K-Series, Resto Project)
The 25XD (2004 ROVER 25 2.0TD, Track Car ?)
The Parts Bin (2001 ROVER 25 1.6 S)
The ASTRA-DX (2012 VAUXHALL ASTRA 1.7CDTi, Daily Eco Driver)

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Re: The Old Lady

#24 Post by Vulgalour » Tue Feb 27, 2018 2:38 am

In part, yes. This car does not respond well to being laid up which is why I prefer to use it regularly. Unfortunately, with more regular use comes more regular rust, so it's a delicate balancing act.
Current Fleet:
1980 Austin Princess 2 1700 HL
1994 Rover 414 SLi

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Re: The Old Lady

#25 Post by ROVER-25X » Tue Feb 27, 2018 5:54 pm

You need a heated shed with underfloor heating by the sounds of it *laughs*. :laughing2
The 25X (2001 ROVER 25 1.4 Impression S, fate TBD)
The CX8 (1997 ROVER Cabriolet 1.6 K-Series, Resto Project)
The 25XD (2004 ROVER 25 2.0TD, Track Car ?)
The Parts Bin (2001 ROVER 25 1.6 S)
The ASTRA-DX (2012 VAUXHALL ASTRA 1.7CDTi, Daily Eco Driver)

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Re: The Old Lady

#26 Post by Vulgalour » Wed Feb 28, 2018 6:55 pm

That would be lovely.

---

Princess is having to live outdoors at the moment because of the ongoing shed saga meaning I can't put her in the garage where she belongs. Makes for a good photo opportunity with the snow that's happened at least. Started on the 26th when some came down enough to stick, which I found out when going out to see if I'd left my phone in the car... I hadn't, and just ended up with cold feet as a result.
Image20180226-01 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

The next day was one of those lovely bright clear ones that was also bitterly cold.
Image20180227-01 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

Image20180227-01 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

Fortunately I haven't had to go out anywhere, work has been keeping me at my desk and the cupboards are well stocked, which is fortunate given the weather. I haven't the greatest confidence in the Princess' snow abilities on the current tyres and our little housing estate is never gritted or cleared. The Rover isn't much better really, the tyres it wears are next to useless on snow. Winter tyres are a luxury I haven't been able to afford, something to aim for next winter as I know they make a surprising difference to handling and stopping and I do have enough spare sets of wheels to accomodate them. It's been snowing pretty much all day on and off today. I did clear the drive of snow and ice only for it to snow again and fill up what I'd cleared, at least there's no ice to break my limbs on now. We're expecting more snow and have an Amber warning for our area so I'm just hoping I don't need to venture out until it's all cleared up again at this point. Looks pretty though.
Image20180228-01 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

Image20180228-02 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr
Current Fleet:
1980 Austin Princess 2 1700 HL
1994 Rover 414 SLi

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Re: The Old Lady

#27 Post by Vulgalour » Thu Mar 01, 2018 1:35 pm

Had a little bit of thundersnow last night and a few more inches of snowfall. I like how quiet everything is, all that irritating background noise of other people doing things and the constant buzz of traffic gone. All the other little noises muffled away by a blanket of chilly white stuff. Fine for me in my nice toasty house, not so much for the homeless, of course.
Image20180301-02 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

Image20180301-04 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

Image20180301-03 by Angyl Roper, on Flickr

Nearly 8" of snow now and we're forecast for more.
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1994 Rover 414 SLi

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Re: The Old Lady

#28 Post by ROVER-25X » Sun Mar 04, 2018 7:31 pm

Looks like the aftermath of a cotton wool factory explosion. :laughing2
The 25X (2001 ROVER 25 1.4 Impression S, fate TBD)
The CX8 (1997 ROVER Cabriolet 1.6 K-Series, Resto Project)
The 25XD (2004 ROVER 25 2.0TD, Track Car ?)
The Parts Bin (2001 ROVER 25 1.6 S)
The ASTRA-DX (2012 VAUXHALL ASTRA 1.7CDTi, Daily Eco Driver)

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Re: The Old Lady

#29 Post by Vulgalour » Sun Mar 04, 2018 8:50 pm

Went out in the dark and slush to get something to eat tonight and rather than take the diesel 75 that's been used every day this week, we opted to take this old lump. Surprisingly competent, as it happens. Wasn't great fun being held up in a 40mph zone by someone in a modern hatchback crawling along at 15mph, especially since that road was clear of snow, ice and slush and visibility was very good. If you're so bad at driving you're holding up someone in a Princess you really ought to just stay at home.
Current Fleet:
1980 Austin Princess 2 1700 HL
1994 Rover 414 SLi

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Re: The Old Lady

#30 Post by ROVER-25X » Sun Mar 04, 2018 11:08 pm

*laughs*, he was probably too busy figuring out what was tailgating him. :laughing2 :laughing2
The 25X (2001 ROVER 25 1.4 Impression S, fate TBD)
The CX8 (1997 ROVER Cabriolet 1.6 K-Series, Resto Project)
The 25XD (2004 ROVER 25 2.0TD, Track Car ?)
The Parts Bin (2001 ROVER 25 1.6 S)
The ASTRA-DX (2012 VAUXHALL ASTRA 1.7CDTi, Daily Eco Driver)

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