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Posts posted by Alfa2Evora

  1. @C8RKH My original intention was to use 'Click & Collect' (it's use is limited to key workers only, but I qualify) but as I needed the parts ASAP, the bizarre lead times of 2 days for C&C but 1 day if you have it delivered swayed me in that direction. I can't get hold of anybody at ECP as their recorded message is quoting at least 2 hour's waiting times on both phone calls and online live chat, and you can't just turn up at one of their stores unannounced apparently. I posted up my displeasure on their Facebook page and all they've done with that is delete my post without replying. I could place the order again, but then I'd have to pay for it again and still have the issue of trying to return 1 item (eventually, as they're not accepting returns at the moment) whilst trying to get a refund for 2, and it would be Friday before I could collect if I can't speak to anybody and get them to extract their collective corporate digits.

    @philcool I'm kicking myself now. I looked at AUTODOC and they had them in stock at pretty much the same price but it was only their delivery time of 4-6 days that put me off. Looks like I would have been quicker with them in the long run. Similarly, Alfistishop (also in Germany) were dismissed for the same reason.

    I know where my business will NOT be going in future!

  2. UPDATE: 

    Well, the delivery from ECP finally arrived at 1230 today.

    Now I know why they were offering a 50% discount to key workers - they only send you 50% of what you ordered!!!!! :censored:  2 springs on the order, 2 springs on the invoice, 1 spring in the box.

    Huge package for what was in it, even if they'd sent what should have been in there, with loads of bubble-wrap (probably full of Chinese air so I'll have to dispose as a bio-hazard) to take up the slack.

    Useless bunch of cretins doesn't get close.


    Alfa new spring 01.jpg

  3. OK, so I realise that with a motoring fleet that comprises of a Lotus, a Saab, and an Alfa Romeo, all of which are around 10 years old, and a Triumph that is knocking on 40, some might consider me a glutton for punishment but actually I quite enjoy a challenge and don't mind breaking out the spanners and getting my hands dirty when the mood takes.

    Lately though, things have just got a bit silly when it comes to trying to keep even one item of personal transport in a functioning condition. The TR8 was never up for consideration in this respect - it's currently a long-running restoration project and is nothing more than a bare bodyshell sitting on blocks in the middle of my garage floor, surrounded by a huge pile of boxes containing a myriad of bits. The Evora is also out of contention as it has been lurking under its waterproof cover, 'abandoned' on my driveway after the last minute cancellation of its service and MOT back at the end of March when my chosen repairer was closed by the virus and although recently re-opened, I have yet to agree a mutually agreeable appointment date and time with them.

    That leaves us with the two 'daily drivers', both of which are somewhat under the weather. The 9-3 is fitted with the very rare Hirsch suspension kit and has a leaking front strut. The part has been on back-order from the factory in Switzerland since February with no delivery date yet promised and the car is becoming steadily more undriveable to the point that I'd only consider driving it, slowly, in a dire emergency. The Giulietta has a problem with the synchromesh on 1st and 2nd and again the necessary parts are on factory order, but thankfully I'm of an age where I learned to drive on a car that didn't have synchro on any gears and so I'm still able to drive the Alfa, albeit with some deft clutchwork and rev-matching techniques.

    Or at least I was able to drive it. I was last out in it last Tuesday on the weekly shopping run then it sat parked until Sunday when I decided to have a drive out to test my eyesight and give the battery a bit of a boost. When I got out to it, I discovered that sometime during the preceding few days of immobility, the coil spring on the rear driver's side had decided to 'explode' and the bits were lying on the ground below, having left their impressions on the fuel tank, the exhaust system and the boot floor as they ricocheted around converting all that pent-up potential energy into the kinetic variety. Extra annoying because those springs were only replaced about 3 years ago but are clearly constructed of an inferior grade of cheese.


    A shop around online on Monday morning found the best deal to be with EuroCarParts. They showed a pair to be in stock at their nearest branch to me (about 15 miles away) so I proceeded to compile a 'Click & Collect' order - as a key worker I was permitted to do this according to their T's & C's. Then the final page of the transaction announced that I wouldn't be able to collect until Wednesday, although I could have them delivered (for an additional charge of £4.95) by DHL next day i.e. today, Tuesday. Why they reckoned they were able send an item via a courier quicker than they could hand it to me over the counter still (and will probably always) eludes me, but the main consideration was to get them here ASAP and it saved me risking a trip in the Saab so I went along with their possible subterfuge.

    Well, today I was up at the crack of dawn in case the DHL guy arrived at the start of their advertised 0800 to 1800 delivery schedule. That way I could get the new springs fitted and the car back on the road before the forecast break in the good weather we've been enjoying in recent days. So I sat and I sat and I sat, then at 1652 my mobile pinged to signal an incoming text. It was from DHL. I opened it expecting to see a message advising that their driver was but minutes away from me. But, oh no! "You're delivery from ECP will be with you between 0800 and 1800 Wednesday." FFS!

    Of course, it's now persisting down and the prediction is that it will continue to do so until about Sunday. Thanks a bunch EuroCarParts / DHL. :realmad: .......................... and breathe!

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  4. Over the years, I've gradually converted our garden from the sterile manicured lawns and formal rose beds that we inherited when we bought the house to a wild nature garden with a wide variety of native plants and trees which in turn have attracted a wide variety of birds, mammals and reptiles to our little oasis on the edge of suburbia. Jennifer reckons the real reason behind it was so I could avoid all that mowing, weeding and pruning - how very dare she! 

    So how have certain members of the avian branch of my wildlife visitors, most likely the magpies or the jackdaws, chosen to thank me for all my efforts on their behalf? Why, they've only gone and used the Evora as a dining table, :realmad: . They've pecked away so vigorously at their chosen foodstuffs that their beaks have ripped holes in my lovely, custom-made outdoor car cover and chipped the paint underneath - mostly confined to the door mirrors fortunately but there are also a couple of bits on the roof, :cry: .

    That's gratitude for you. Well, two can play at that game. First thing tomorrow, 50 tons of concrete will be on order!


    The cover is blue - don't know why these next 2 came out grey.



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  5. I've just been back past the location where the local Covidiots had their party on Saturday and it now looks like this, :realmad: .......................


    Just before we went into lockdown, a group of us (dog-walkers) tidied-up the whole woodland area, in the run-up to the Great British Spring Clean, as it was beginning to show evidence of the passage of some of the untidier members of our community. We thought it was bad enough then with the odd discarded water bottle or crisp packet to contend with, but this takes it to a whole new level. How can a dozen kids create so much mess in one night? 

    Oh well, I suppose that gives us an activity to look forward to once we can all get back together again. :rolleyes:

  6. Here in West Lothian, the youngsters are really enjoying the freedoms handed them by the Green contingent in Holyrood.

    Despite being regarded as responsible adults and deemed able to vote for our lawmakers at the age of 16 they are also deemed, when under the age of 18, as not being old enough to be prosecuted for breaking the very laws these lawmakers make, :rolleyes: .

    Whilst walking our dogs yesterday through the woodland next to our house, I became aware of some excited little voices up ahead. In a small clearing, I find a full blown party/orgy in progress. About a dozen teenage Covidiots hugging and kissing, and passing around bottles, cans and some dodgy-looking smokes for all to share, :veryangry: .

    No point in reporting them as: 

    a) the recently-passed amendment to the lockdown legislation renders them immune from prosecution (although not from the virus itself) and all the police can do is order them to disperse, and

    b) they would most likely disperse of their own accord anyway at the first sight of a uniform by their posted lookouts - as I came into view the shout went up "It's awright, it's jist some old c*** walkin' his f*****' dugs. 

    It really makes me mad when most of us genuinely 'responsible adults' are sticking absolutely to the instructions for our, and everybody else's, well-being.

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  7. I can't answer how it'll affect your car if the CAI is all you'll have.

    I've got a 2bular exhaust system and have had an ECU remap too, and combined with the CAI it makes a noticeable difference - driving it with the Sport button off is more like having it on in a standard car, and when you put it in Sport it goes like the proverbial. Plus, the induction howl when you push up towards the top end of the rev-range is nothing short of insane, :driving:.

    I was lucky in that I was in the right place at the right time to grab a barely-used bargain on here otherwise I was looking at personally importing one from The States at something north of £500 at the time (a couple of years ago) as I'm not aware of anyone in the UK that supplies just the intake kit.


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  8. With the Evora now off the road for the foreseeable, the one highpoint I could still look forward to in an otherwise dreary housebound day was getting out with the dogs for our 60 minutes or so of permitted freedom.

    It's great, because just across the road from my house is a huge expanse of abandoned peat moss surrounded by unmanaged woodland. Great for the hounds to have a mad time running around off-lead with minimal chance of meeting anybody else, and even if you do, there's ample opportunity to get yourself well out of their way.

    This was taken on yesterday's outing......


    ....and this was taken on today's..................................:rant:


    Clearly, setting fire to our wheelie bins has lost its initial excitement for our local scrotes.

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  9. Not long off the phone having been 'on hold' with the DVSA since early doors.

    The Evora will be SORN'd as of Saturday night as they can't offer me any leeway. If the MOT had been due on or after the 30th then it would have been extended by 6 months automatically and the tax renewal would have gone through as normal. However since it expires on the 28th, I have only 2 choices - either get it MOT'd before the tax runs out so that it can then be renewed on April 1st, or the car MUST be taken off the road until such times as it can be MOT'd. No ifs, no buts, no maybes.

    I explained all that I described in my previous post above but their reply was that whilst they can sympathise with my predicament, the rules are hard and fast and there can be no exceptions - the have no 'magic' button that will allow them to override the system and allow me to keep the car on the road. They warned me that I would start pinging ANPR cameras and it would only be a matter of time before I attracted a Fixed Penalty Notice for having no tax.

    Oh well, looks like there's going to be one less truck restocking the local supermarket warehouses in the coming weeks. 

    Think I'll declare myself as self-isolating and tap into whatever offer Mr Sunak comes up with shortly for us self-employed chaps and chapesses whilst I binge-out on daytime TV,   :rolleyes:  :wallbash:  :rant:

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  10. I'm carless, as of this coming weekend.

    The ALFA has been off the road since the beginning of the month awaiting the arrival of some transmission parts from Italy, plus the garage that has it is closing as from tomorrow night, so I'm not expecting it back on my driveway anytime in the foreseeable. It's MOT runs out at the end of September - I wonder if I'll have it back in time for that?

    The SAAB has its MOT due on the 29th of this month, but thanks to a pothole last week, it still needs a replacement rear spring and shocker - I've already successfully sourced the wheel and tyre it also needed. Unfortunately it's fitted with an uprated specialist suspension pack, neither of the 2 UK stockists of Hirsch Performance items has the parts in stock, and so we've now got to try and source it from the factory in Switzerland - not holding my breath there then either. Knowing my luck, the garage that has it will also now decide to close.

    The Evora has its MOT due on the 28th of this month, and was booked in weeks ago to have it done today. Since it was only an MOT and nothing else (the annual service, along with a pre-MOT once-over, was done last month) I simply booked it in directly with the same MOT station that our local (and only) Lotus indy takes them to rather than bother the indy with something that he then has to take to the third party anyway. The garage concerned phoned last night to tell me that they would have to cancel the test in the interests of staff safety, and because so many other MOT stations are also closing, I can't find anywhere that can take it for the next 5 weeks. So for the sake of 2 days, I can't take advantage of the 6 month automatic MOT extension that's in place from the 30th, and so keep my only serviceable car on the road and able to take me to my key worker role as a food delivery HGV driver - I work nights, starting at 9pm, and the depot is about 20 miles away in the middle of nowhere.

    Brilliant!!!!! :realmad:

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