Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Wheely good...

Yay, new (old) wheels.

These should be going for a re-furb next week which will mean shiny new shoes for the Z. Just got to get some new boots (that's tyres) to go on them and the Z will be sitting pretty.

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

It's all a bit quiet...

...because I'm really busy, and the car is hidden away in Bristol. There will be an update after the weekend though, as I'm taking it to meet one of its American cousins.

In the meantime, have a loot at this racing Zody. Hmmm, race-spec Zodiac...

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Damn you internet!

I should be working right now, but instead I'm looking at pictures of MK2 Zodiacs. Modified MK2 Zodiacs at that. They're making me have funny feelings, I need some of this action my life...

Maybe not this though, that's just a bit mean to be honest, even if it is only a lowly Consul (it's not a recent picture by the way).

Monday, 16 August 2010

Found this on Youtube...

...back from when I owned it four years ago! Note the "shut-up" gesture I make to the children at the end. I love children, honest.

Clutching at...

I've got some bloody good mates, me. The Z is currently residing at Area 52 because A) I don't have enough money to put any more fuel in it and B) the clutch is hanging out of it as I went all Northern and opted to get every possible mile out of the poor bugger. As such, it no longer moves under its own steam. Well, it creates steam/smoke/peculiar odors, all without the faintest hint of any movement. Clutch rivets hitting the flywheel are probably not a great thing either.

The plan was simple, I'd pay for it to live at 52 and as soon as I had a free weekend I'd head on down and change the clutch (there is a new one loitering in the boot). It didn't go like that though, instead I got a call on Saturday from Bruce..

Bruce: "Hi Chris, I'm trying to tidy Area 52, but it's the kind of thing I need to do on my own as I know where everything goes. Steve's here though, and he's bored. He wants to change your clutch."

Me: "I can't ask him to do that, that's a bit much!"

Quiet shout from Steve in the background: "It's alright, I want to!"

Me: "Blimey, thanks mate!"

So there we have it, the clutch is in the process of being changed just because my mates were bored. Like I said, I've got some bloody good mates, me! I must buy Steve something shiny for his Viva, and I must make a donation to Area 52 as a thanks for this!

Thursday, 12 August 2010

One thing that did happen at the Gathering...

...was this.

...thanks to Iain of BiAS fame and his mad painting skills, yo!

Looks good eh? It's getting a respray within the next 18 months, so why not have some fun in the meantime.

It might only be flamed on one side though. We might have ran out of masking tape. Ahem.

A teaser of things to come...

...yeah, I know I should sort the clutch. Wheels are so much cooler than a clutch though.

...might have to get the plasma cutter on those front springs too. There are far too many coils!

The Retro Rides Gathering 2010...

The second weekend of August was a time of much merriment for hundreds of retro car lovers from all over the UK and Europe. In deepest, darkest Somerset there lies a museum, a place filled to the brim with cars of all shapes and sizes. There is a Zodiac hot-rod in there and a cutaway Sierra Cosworth amongst others, but no one really cared about that. No, what drew the crowds were the hundreds of eclectic, eccentric and exciting cars that belong to the members of the Retro Rides forum. This isn't just a car show, this is the definitive car show for the discerning fan of cars gone by. Slammed Mercedes, high-riding 4x4s, track prepped and V8 powered BMW's and mintier than mint VW Campers made up for a small portion of the attendees. Those who know about it call it 'the show of the year' whereas those who have never been soon put it high on their list once they've soaked up the atmosphere. In a nutshell, it's an epic weekend and for 2010 it would be even better because the Zodiac would be there with me!

It went down a storm, people reacted so well to it. I was a little taken back by the whole thing to be honest. What really made people smile though, was my willingness to let people have a go. Why not though? After all, it wouldn't have been there were it not for the hard work that so many people put in, so the least I could do was let them have a drive around the campsite. Plus, it was pretty entertaining watching people try and use/get freaked out by the notion of a three-speed column-change manual transmission. I'm used to it now, but some folk were baffled at the concept!

It did me so proud, and the weekend itself was a major mojo booster too. A well needed holiday you might say. I even slept in the Z for two nights in a row and can confirm that it's bloody comfortable, despite me being 6ft 3!

RRG10 was the Z's first show, and what a way to introduce it to the world of camping, beer, banter, cools cars and good mates. That weekend will live with me for a long time to come!

Sadly though, the drive back to Area 52, over the steep Mendip Hills has killed what was left of the clutch, so I'm kind of back to the drawing board in terms of it being a functioning car. I don't care though, it was worth it. Plus I have a clutch in the boot, all I have to do is fit it now...old cars eh?

She Lives! Yay!

Sorry for the gap between updates, I've been a little busy what with work, shows and daddy duties. Things have calmed down now though, so I can finally treat you good people to an update. Whoo, yay!

The first big news is that she finally works again! Yes, after weeks of trial, error, swearing, skinned knuckles, swapped parts, tested earths and fresh condensers the old girl has finally barked into life. It wasn't a simple diagnosis as we first pointed our fingers at the budget electronic ignition. This was swapped out for a normal set up (via a new dizzy) including fresh points and condenser. No life though, nothing at all. All the wiring was checked, the earths were checked, the coil was changed, the battery was swapped, we basically changed every component on the ignition system, all to seemingly no avail.

I was a bit gutted by this point, especially as we were one week from the Retro Rides Gathering, a weekend event that I really wanted the Z to be at. It wasn't looking good though, we'd exhausted every possible diagnosis and come up with nothing. It looked bleak, all until Alan rocked up and had a look! With a fresh pair of eyes he was able to figure out that there was something within the dizzy that wasn't quite right. Turns out the was a washer in there that had no place. All it was doing was preventing the points from sparking, hence no ignition. Washer removed, the car fired up on the button! Joy was me!

The car could make the Gathering, to say I was a bit happy would be something of an understatement. A 12 year old doing a trolley dash in Toys R Us wouldn't be as happy as I was! I had a car that worked again, and a car that could get me to the Gathering. Sweet!

*Area 52 guys, Steve, Bruce, Rich, Alan, Ant and the rest of you, thanks for all the time and effort you put into trying to get the shed running!