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Everything posted by islandbloke

  1. I had to buy two for my top overhaul a couple of years ago. Apparently the uprated head bolts/studs on my car are slightly bigger than the originals, so my mechanic had to drill some of the holes out. First one ripped... and because I'm the customer with a non-standard motor it was MY fault so I had to buy another! I've not been back since...
  2. Let me make this clear Bibs, it's our generation's job to use all the petrol. That way our children will have to be a bit more innovative to have fun cars in the future. And you owe it to George Osborne to pay lots of tax. M'kay? French cars for tree huggers don't do ANY of that.
  3. I've driven a couple of these and think they're fantastic cars. However, they drink petrol AND oil apparently, and you need to ensure you get a good one without rotor tip wear.
  4. I've done photography on the roller coaster at Blackpool (stills) facing backwards with a model in the carriage behind me, and shot TV/video action footage of cars from numerous vehicles (people carriers usually) and once in Kosovo out of the back of an RAF Chinook...standing on the lip of the ramp with just a simple harness. Funny, since I don't have a head for heights - but looking through a viewfinder distances you from it somehow.
  5. Might be one of the Elises I drove while making the Duke 'Best of British - Lotus' video. Certainly no power drifting on those roundabouts near Hethel in the early hours coming back from Great Yarmouth, as that would probably be illegal!
  6. Dave - I also priced up a tubular system recently, but couldn't justify the £1400 quoted so bought another cast one, which will hopefully last another few years. I can't afford to have £600 on the shelf, but would have happily paid that for one a couple of months ago! Maybe the manufacturer would make some 'stock' for people like me while he's jigged up - this is a part we'll all have to buy sooner or later so it would surely be worth his while?
  7. Pffft - 150mph in a 22 year old Esprit on the Mountain Mile in the Isle of Man is what sorts the men from the autobahn boys
  8. Good stuff Alan. If you continue to use yours as an apprentice piece, I'll drop mine in for a good fettling!
  9. John - she's injected so I don't think it's blocked jets - although it may be a dodgy fuel filter or sticky injectors I suppose? Alan - probably the original (maybe dealer fit) alarm that hasn't worked for a dozen years. Or it may be the alternator. Once I get her back I'll get a local autosparks to have a look. I have Freescan (temperamental under Win XP) so will run a log and see if the TPS values look suspect - thanks for the suggestion.
  10. I think I'm most convinced by 'Changes' argument. These shows might just be 'infotainment', but Mike Brewer (nice enough bloke, interviewed him for the radio once) is peddling a big fat lie when he says he's made a grand profit on a car, yet not factored in the costs of collection or workshop time. If he made it crystal clear that the work could be done by anyone mechanically basically competent on a driveway in the rain I'd be less critical - but he doesn't! I'd love to work on Lottie, but I'm useless with spanners and don't have a garage so I have to pay someone else to work on her. And the thing is, if the show is aimed at idiots - how many buy basket cases, a Halfords socket set and a couple of aerosols and expect to make a killing? I've worked in telly and a proper resto job just wouldn't work - again the Mark Evans stuff is probably closest to reality (but still a good way off). As another poster has noted, these 'improvement' shows all introduce an arbitrary deadline and some internecine angst to ratchet up the tension - but that holds casual viewers over the interminable ad breaks. What I also hate is that an hour programme, less the breaks, contains at best 20 minutes of fresh content - from the very start they're throwing forwards ('coming up in part x') or restating ('earlier in the show we saw') to the point where I record them all now and fast forward the wasted 40 minutes.
  11. Bernie Fineman was last a 'TV star' with the Indian geezer (Leepu?) chopping cars and nailing truly horrible bits of 'custom' bodywork to them. Laughable, and this is no better. And what part does the co-host play? Seems to know nothing about cars and is apparently only there to goad BF?
  12., not me, Lottie. She's 22 now and is still in the workshop having some jobs done. Out of interest, the guys working on her found leaky/corroded aluminium coolant pipes (now replaced with stainless) and perished rubber pipes and elbows in the vacuum system. After 3 years of cold feet, the heater is working again! Only mention it as we're not all engineers who know that things like these wear out over time and can cause all sorts of inexplicable problems. Next job - finding out why she misfires constantly on a part throttle, and where the electric is leaking to and ruining the battery!
  13. I thought you guitar nuts might enjoy this, which I bought new in around 1990 (I'd convinced myself that a better instrument would make me a better player). I was wrong and have moved to 4-strings since with a similarly aged Gibson Victory bass I bought new, a Yamaha fretted and a Yamaha fretless which is my current favourite. My guitarist pals all LOVE the MIII - it does everything a Strat AND a Les Paul will do, and she's a loud beast!
  14. Holy Jebus, I wish I was as smart and pious as Roger! I stopped buying tobacco on June 23rd last year and have gone over to an e-cigarette the size of a clarinet....looks stupid but it does the job wonderfully. However, this time (I smoked 40/day for 40 years and had previously tried EVERY method of quitting) I've not given up, I've just gone for a new alternative. I still bum the odd OP (I didn't want to have the excuse 'if I have just one I'll have failed again and might as well buy a pack') but I reckon going down from 300/week to 3 or 4 is as near dammit being an ex-smoker. Amazingly, I'm also chilled and sensitive enough NOT to give smokers a hard time or lecture them...
  15. We probably know a formula for that, don't we children? Is it weight=lift and thrust=drag...or am I thinking of an aeroplane in equilibrium?
  16. Pal didn't buy it after all - shame, I'm determined to get him in an Esprit!
  17. Hope it all pans out well for you Kimbers. Getting older is a miserable bloody task - when I was younger I could pee over the garden shed...nowadays I just drain (slowly). I've had regular examinations though because my old man had prostrate cancer once (and survived) and I've had a PSA test or two. Last time the doctor (a dour Scotsman) gloved up I asked him if he could nibble my ear first to get me warmed up...he didn't see the funny side!
  18. My AMG Merc CL55 shopping car has active (ABC) - I think it's pure hydraulics rather than hydropneumatic with lots of gyros to detect movement and a CPU to do all the calculations. Has three ride heights selectable and is switchable. Completely flat cornering when turned on, but the worry is that if it goes wrong, new dampers are almost a grand each...
  19. I couldn't believe they called it that either! Made me chuckle asking the girls at work if they wanted to see it...
  20. Just gone back to being a freelancer, so have set up a project studio at home (my last pro studio was 1" analogue 16-track in 1987) primarily to make radio commercials (see But this time it's all digital and PC-based. ProTools 10.2, Mackie MCU Pro, Focusrite Scarlett and a Mackie Big Knob - monitoring on Tannoy HPD's via a graphic (the room needed eq and/or I built it wrong!) and a pair of monoblock amps. I'm a bass player but am able to MIDI up a Yamaha YPP55. Jolly good fun, although a steep learning curve for an old fella!
  21. That's a thing of beauty Pete - I'll phone Don for a price tomorrow.
  22. That's my view Mike - I'm surprised that Paul doesn't think it's a problem. Sure, a single previous owner could have been Hertz or Trackdaze-R-Us, but 11 feels somewhat excessive to me and indicative of a possibly problem car. Derek - your links are fantastic - thanks so much, I've forwarded them to my pal.
  23. I've been trying to convince a petrolhead chum to set fire to his TVR and buy a sorted Esprit for years - he's found this one at Pistonheads: Some typos in the description (224bhp??) but it's the 11 previous owners that would put me off. I wondered if it was 'known' to any of us...could be a corker for all I know.
  24. Some pictures. No apparent holes or cracks in the old manifold, which is a bonus - so I'll take it to the local experts and see if it can be fettled. What these don't show is that the thickness of the flanges decreases significantly from cylinder 1 to cylinder 4, almost as though someone has already tried to skim the mating face flat but made a bugger of it. The local garage have cleaned up the faces - as you can see none of them are flat, so no wonder my turbo wasn't boosting properly. Also (I'm not an engineer) it seems that the outside cylinder stud holes are significantly bigger than the inners - were these things made like that to allow for expansion or poor manufacturing tolerances. You can see the corrosion has eaten part of the web, but that's paper thin anyway so I guess it's not important. Again, comments/suggestions more than welcome if anyone has a 'eureka' moment!
  25. Darren - I havent seen the old manifold, but the garage says it's a basket case and has died of old age - apparently even the stud holes are all elongated. However, I'll pop in and look at it tomorrow. Best deal so far on an alternative seems to be Alunox stainless tube - price includes everything according to Leon there, so unless my old one is repairable that's what I'll do.Probably.
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