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Captain Haddock

Member Since 28 Mar 2011
Offline Last Active Oct 20 2014 01:54 PM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Air Conditioning

26 July 2014 - 04:58 PM

l'lI assume you've already checked the engine coolant reservoir is between the MIN/MAX marks and the washer fluid reservoir/pipe aren't leaking.


When you use the air-con it's job is to dry and cool the air and therefore if the humidity of the air is high the the air has to dump the removed moisture somewhere.


The puddle is a result of the air-con dumping the excess moisture out of the drain tube and it also means your drain tube is clear of blockages; this is good as with a blocked drain tube the moisture could otherwise end up remaining in the car's cabin (usually soaking into the sound-proofing and carpets).


If you don't get the puddle when NOT using the air-con then relax, it's merely the air-con doing it's job.

In Topic: Caked On Road Debris On Alloys!

26 July 2014 - 04:39 PM

Yes, those 20-spoke alloys they fit to Titaniums are a real ***! to clean even when using a toothbrush to scrub them; I much prefer the 5-spoke 'Snowflake' design which are far easier to clean.


If the major deposits are only accumulating on the front wheels then it's much more likely to be brake disc/pad residue (which occurs due to using the brakes); there are two solutions to this :-

  1. Stop using the brakes :D - not recommended
  2. Use a suitable cleaning product, e.g Valet Pro Dragons Breath to shift the ingrained muck.
    Like other similar products (e.g. CarPro Iron X) Dragon's Breath turns purple to show where you've got iron based deposits and its cleaning.
    First time you use it you'll probably see your wheels turn almost completely purple.

I use Dragon's Breath to shift the crud from my wheels and they come up like new afterwards, but be warned like the name suggests it stinks a bit when you're spraying it on.  However, the smell doesn't linger and is completely gone after washing off.

In Topic: Spot The Poor Vauxhall!

22 July 2014 - 01:14 PM

Can't offer any pictures, but try this ...


"Spot", the Poor Vauxhall

After leaving the big factory Spot the little Vauxhall lived in a showroom for a while before he was bought by a nice lady.
He lived in a nice cosy garage and his owner had him washed and cleaned inside every month by a nice valeter; this made Spot really happy.
Spot beamed with pride every time his owner took him to where she worked as Spot had his own space in a nice covered car park where the nasty pigeons couldn't mess on his clean paint.
Every year she took him to the big garage; Spot was especially happy after his filters were changed and he was filled with nice fresh oil.
When he was three years old Spot was taken to another garage for an 'MOT' where he was poked and prodded all over.
Spot didn't like this as the man lent on Spot with dirty hands and left greasy marks on Spot's steering wheel.
Not long after the nasty 'MOT' he heard his owner saying she'd had a 'pay rise' and was going to get a better car; Spot thought he was a nice car and this news made Spot sad.
A few days later Spot was driven to the garage where all the proud German cars were lined up in strict rows.
He saw his owner looking at the smaller German cars and after a while she went into the showroom where Spot could just see her in his mirrors; his owner was sat at a desk with a salesman and pointing to things on the desk.
The salesman and his owner came out and went out in one of the small German cars; when they came back Spot saw his owner handing his keys to the salesman.
She got in a new small German car and left Spot behind with all the German cars; Spot was unhappy as the even the small German cars teased him for being 'cheap' and were not at all nice to him.
The salesman came out later and put a big 'FOR SALE - LOW COST MOTORING' sticker on Spot's windscreen.
Spot missed his nice warm garage and for weeks he was left parked outside in a dark corner under a tree where it was damp, chilly and the pigeons messed on his paint.
One day another man came and washed the dirt off Spot; it wasn't the nice valeter that treated Spot carefully, but a man in overalls who used a dirty sponge which left Spot feeling all itchy as though he'd been scratched.
The next day a young man came to the German garage; he looked all round Spot and after kicking Spot's tyres Spot saw him go into the showroom.
The young man and the salesman came out and they took Spot for a 'test drive'; they went into the showroom when they got back and when the young man came out he was carrying Spot's keys.
The young man got into Spot and drove off, Spot realised he'd been sold and the young man was his new owner; Spot was happy again.
Although his new owner didn't have a nice warm garage Spot was kept under a covered area and was washed regularly with lots of warm soapy water.
One day his new owner went to car park where there were lots of other Vauxhalls which were racing up and down the car pack creating lots of noise and smoke; Spot didn't like this car park at all as he was almost hit by one of the racers.
The next week Spot was driven to a shop with a big orange sign and when his owner came out he was pushing a trolley with a number of boxes, packets and tins in it.
When they got home Spot's owner took all the boxes inside and for the next few weeks Spot saw other boxes being delivered to his owner's home.
One bright Saturday morning Spot's owner came out, jacked up Spot and propped him up on bricks, lifting all his wheels off the ground.
Then he unscrewed some of Spot's bolts and took bits off Spot; for a while Spot felt very wobbly as he had no wheels and his springs had been taken off; he very scared when his owner made the springs shorter by cutting bits off.
Spot couldn't remember what happened next as his battery was taken off, but when he woke up on Sunday morning he was back on the ground with some shiny new wheels and all the boxes had gone.
His owner must have changed Spot's radio as his old one didn't have all the flashing lights that new one did.
Spot knew the new radio wasn't a proper Vauxhall one as it didn't fit properly and had been wedged in place with some foam and bits of cardboard from the boxes.
When the radio was turned on Spot was horrified as it was very noisy causing his boot shelf to keep bouncing up and down; Spot then realised his little boot had been filled up with a very big speaker.
His owner got in and as it was really sunny wound down both front windows before Spot was started up.
Spot rasped loudly and as he was reversed out onto the road Spot saw his old exhaust pipe on top of the big bin.
When they drove down the small road that led to his owner's home Spot had trouble getting over the large bumps in the road and his bottom scraped noisily.
On Friday Spot had cleared the bumps easily and he wasn't sure why the bumps now seemed so high; Spot felt happier when he managed to get over the last bump and reach the big road.
Since it was still early there were only a few other cars passing the end of the small road and Spot could see it would be easy to pull out safely onto the big road.
His owner revved Spot a lot causing him make lots of noise and instead of pulling out gently he swerved out onto the big road; Spot didn't feel right as he wiggled about a lot instead of being able to drive off smoothly.
Even though he wasn't going very fast and his bonnet was down Spot could feel a draft on top of his engine; perhaps his owner hadn't closed the bonnet properly.
Instead of going to the big food shop like he usually did on a Sunday Spot's owner drove back and forth along all of the big road several times; Spot felt very wobbly as they went round the roundabouts at each end.
Another car pulled up alongside Spot at the traffic lights and Spot was revved loudly by his owner.
The traffic lights changed to green and Spot's owner tried racing the other car to the next set of traffic lights, but was overtaken.
As they pulled up behind the other car at the next set of traffic lights Spot could see the other car's badges which read 'Focus ST' then Spot noticed two lights start to flash blue in the back of the other car.
A man in a blue uniform got out of the other car and as he walked towards them Spot heard the man mutter quietly 'a chavved up Barry car'; Spot was confused as his name wasn't Barry.
Spot's engine was turned off by his owner when the man in uniform stood next to his owner, "Who do you think you are ?  Michael Schumacher ?", the man in uniform asked as he got out his notebook.
The man in uniform carefully examined Spot and made several notes in his book before taking the Spot's keys out.
"This vehicle is unroadworthy and will be impounded.", intoned the man in uniform and after a little while a big lorry came and took Spot away to a dingy compound that was surrounded by a big spikey fence.
Spot was very sad and wondered if he'd see his owner again.


With apologies to Eric Hill.

In Topic: Dashboard Compartment

17 July 2014 - 02:31 PM

Mad85's solution seems a neat fix.


These are the two parts that get broken by handed use :-

  • LID (1519315) about £55
  • CATCH (1545547) about £24

but you'll probably not like the prices.


If the recessed catch is okay and you feel like crafting a replacment hook for the lid it's this shape (excuse the crude ascii art)





In Topic: Focus 1.6 Tdci Mpg

24 June 2014 - 10:39 AM


60mpg on the motorway is simple to do - don't drive like an F1 driver :P


Give yourself room to anticipate the numpty ahead of you constantly stepping on the brakes because they're trying to plant their bonnet in the back end of the vehicle in front.  Leaving yourself room means you can ease off the throttle instead of braking and simply converting your fuel into brake dust.