top

(S)axo 16v

Post new topic Reply to topic trackscotland.co.uk Forum Index | Projects Goto page 1, 2  Next   Page 1 of 2

Tue Feb 16, 2016 8:29 am PostPost subject: (S)axo 16v
Erik
user


Joined: 16 Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Location: Edinburgh

Reply with quote

So I figured I should really think about sticking up a project thread for my little pile of french poo.

Things initially kicked off on a hungover bus trip back from East Calder to Edinburgh, whilst browsing cheap run abouts on Gumtree in a bid to take the strain off my 'show' car.....



I was on the verge of hopping on a train to head to Kirkcaldy to look at a couple of super mundane cheap cars.

As I got to Haymarket train station, I made a final check on Gumtree andnoticed that a little green Saxo VTS had literally just been listed....... and was a 5 minute walk from Haymarket station.

I had 10 minutes before my train to Kirkcaldy was due to arrive...... but I think in my head I'd already made my mind up.

32 mins after the advert went live, I found myself going home in this...... 300 lighter.





The car came with no MOT, and in that ways was going to be a bit of a gamble. But for 300 i figured it was one worth taking.

On the face of it, it seemed like a fairly respectable low mileage 3 keeper car.

As was the fear though, it was what was under that face which hid all the secrets and it became clear why the guy I bought it from had had it for such a brief period of time and hadnt stuck an MOT on it.

He had done a handbrake cable on it, so I know he's been under the car - theres no way he could have failed to notice the rust on it - it was clear his 'shouldnt need much for an MOT' claim was questionable at best.





The rust will be a recurring theme throughout this unfortunately. But for now, it was a case of repairing enough in order to get it safely through an MOT.





Chuck in a nicer set of refurb'd wheels with better tyres and hey presto...... The little Saxo was saved from the scrapheap and ready for the road.



Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Tue Feb 16, 2016 8:32 am PostPost subject:
Erik
user


Joined: 16 Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Location: Edinburgh

Reply with quote

So...... that kept me entertained for a couple of months and the plan was along the lines of 'tidy it up and keep it standard'........ repeatedly telling myself NOT to spend money on it.

Then something happened which kinda marked the start of a 'transformation'........ A set of 4 pot HiSpec brakes became available from a mates car (well, van actually) at a price which seemed reasonable.

So, after a couple of custom braided brake lines from Gerry and a couple of 5mm spacers to make room for them - we ended up here....







Great stopping power, but in order to get a better feeling pedal after the upgrade, it made sense to pick up a bigger master cylinder taken from a 306 GTI-6.

This hasnt yet made its way on to the car - but its sitting waiting patiently.



Now that it was stopping well, it was time to try and make it go a little better also.

There was never any plan for big power to be had from this - but it made sense to chuck some very basic breathing mods at it.

Cheap ebay enclosed induction kit came first, before we then decided to remove a lot of the metal which was getting in the way of the air flow. Bye bye front panel.....



Which also lead to a need for some bonnet catches.



And to finish letting the thing breath easier, picked up a cheap 4 branch manifold and mated that to a lovely stainless system courtesy of welding wizard, Billy at Complete.







I guess you'd say it was at this point it kinda stopped being a cheap run about, and it was about now that i'd made the decision to get myself back in to track day driving.

Its fate was sealed, time to make the Saxo a track car.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Tue Feb 16, 2016 8:33 am PostPost subject:
Erik
user


Joined: 16 Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Location: Edinburgh

Reply with quote

I was having problems with a leaky sunroof, as is common on these cars.

So it made perfect sense to address that by removing all the interior to

a) get access to see where the problem was and
b) prevent any smelly leaky mouldy damp carpets......... but mainly
c) cos track cars dont have interiors.



<--- Standard exhaust still on here, i think my time line must be out a little bit.

Removing the interior revealed some more nasty surprises.....



Which also needed repairing.





On the plus side though, it got me to the bottom of the sunroof leak. Easy fix? Do away with the sunroof completely, it had never worked anyway and or course - its weight thats no longer needed. Out it came and in went a plate.





All the basic weight removal got carried out, have left the dash in for now as i'd like to keep thigns like blowers and the stereo - but that might well escalate further as time goes by.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Tue Feb 16, 2016 8:34 am PostPost subject:
Erik
user


Joined: 16 Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Location: Edinburgh

Reply with quote

Since then its really been about gathering bits up for it.

Braided brake lines for the back brakes, AP Racing fluid for it for when the time comes to fit those and the master cylinder.

Did a clutch kit on it as the release bearing collapsed on itself.

Then someone locally was breaking a track car of their own which had been using the Bilsten Tarmac rally setup.

Id initially been planning to get a cheaper 'new' kit, but the chance to get some GOOD second hand suspension for the same price as i'd have paid for the new cheaper stuff made it a no brainer.

This came as complete struts, with matching nearly new drive shafts and recent wheel bearings.

Have had to pick up a couple of strut tops and some drop links, but its now basically all sitting ready to bolt on.



The rear axles on these cars are a notorious achilles heel for them.

Thankfully, mine had been ok, but the plan had been to refurb it for safetys sake anyway.

However, that plan went out the window when a freshly refurbed axle came up for sale on one of the Saxo owners groups...... complete with uprated rear discs, BM Baker solid rear beam mounts, and most importantly, 23mm PeugeotSport torsion bars.

Again, this hadnt reallye ver been part of the plan - but the price was right and it made it well worth a return trip to York to collect.



I'd wanted to get rid of some sloppy engine movement, so went for a set of Group N BM Baker engine mounts with a Group A fork bush.

These have really made a big difference, but have obviously increased vibrations and noise in the cabin tenfold - another step away from being a road car I think!!



Whilst fitting the upper engine mount, i had to move the ecu, which as i half expected revealed another delightful surprise......



And another repair.....



Whilst we were at it, dealt with another known design weak point of the Saxo, the parachute rear bumper.

There's a reason the 106's came with a mesh lower valance after all..... time to reduce drag a little bit.

My mate made up a perfect vinyl template for me with perfectly spaced holes to cut:





And some holesaw action later.....

Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Tue Feb 16, 2016 8:35 am PostPost subject:
Erik
user


Joined: 16 Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Location: Edinburgh

Reply with quote

And I think that about takes us up to current day.

Ordered up a safety devices cage thanks to Hamish at Pandamonium, so currently counting down the days till that arrives - hopefully in the next week or two.

Not the cheapest cage on the market, but theres certain areas I dont wanna cut corners in.

Seats and harnesses will be ordered on payday this month, which means i'll just have some tyres and a steering wheel to purchase before I get it out for its first track day - hopefully at the hot hatch sessions on the SLS day in April.

Obviously, theres a lot of parts still on the garage floor needing fitted before then though, so its probably going to be a busy couple of months....... with a stack more rust repair to contend with along the way.

Being realistic, the shell isnt great. I've known that all along and obivously its not ideal to keep patching it up as I go along - but the way I see it, it wouldnt be a massive task to take everything i've accumulated for this one and re-shell it if that ended up being the only answer.

I'd like to keep this one alive if I possibly can, for a few personal reasons - but obviously, there will have to be a line somewhere.

I've no intentions of going out and setting lap records in this - more than anything else, i've just missed being out on track and this is first and foremost being done as a bit of fun.

I have picked my bits wisely though - so i'm hoping its at least fairly capable. I guess we shall see come April.

At this point though - I'd like to say a massive thanks to my best mate Billy at Complete Auto Solutions for the hours he's put in to the car with me (and the many more to come!!) - this really wouldnt have happened at all without his help. Forever in his debt for all his help Smile
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Tue Feb 16, 2016 4:57 pm PostPost subject:
Dave P
Doune's #1 Fan


Joined: 07 Nov 2007
Posts: 2498
Location: Aberdeen

Reply with quote

Looks like things are heading in the right direction Erik, keep an eye out for the smaller quiky front ARB to compliment the bigger rear T bars. Wink
_________________
Come play my game. Smile
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Thu Feb 18, 2016 7:13 am PostPost subject:
Erik
user


Joined: 16 Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Location: Edinburgh

Reply with quote

Dave P wrote:
Looks like things are heading in the right direction Erik, keep an eye out for the smaller quiky front ARB to compliment the bigger rear T bars. Wink


Cheers Dave, i'm sure I've seen your name pop up on Sax-p a fair bit?

Am I right in thinking the smaller arb will make the turn in better / back end looser?

I'll probably run it as is (or at least 'as will be' when the bits make it off the floor and on to the car!) for the foreseeable, I'm already a whole lot more serious in to this than was ever planned lol - moneys tighter than it was meant to be now!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Mon Apr 04, 2016 9:38 am PostPost subject:
Erik
user


Joined: 16 Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Location: Edinburgh

Reply with quote

Well...... the weekend was eventful in one way or another thats for sure.

Sitting here on Monday morning trying to get my head around it all and decide whether its good or bad. I think its probbaly a bit of both for different reasons.

The plan was to get as much of the exterior stuff sorted this weekend in preparation for my cage arriving.

So we started to strip down the suspension and removed the side skirt to try and get a better look at just how much welding was going to be needed...... I was expecting to see a lot of work needing done, but unfortunately - i'd totally underestimated just how much..... I dont think winter was kind to it.

The deeper we dug, the worse it got and the bigger the pile of crumbling saxo there was left on the floor.






So....... as much as it pained me to say it. It was time to admit defeat.

Could keep chasing and welding and chasing and welding till i ended up with a complete saxo patchwork quilt, but it would never be any good for what I need it to be good for and it would be a lot of wasted time and expense doing so.

I knew that the shell wasnt a long term solution, I just didnt expect it to be before i'd even had the thing out on track. Apart from all else, it wouldnt have been wise to try and attach a roll cage to that shell....... finding something solid to mount it to woulda been a mission in itself.

However.......... rather than sulking, we needed to come up with a solution.

Thankfully I knew of another Saxo. Fast forward an hour or so..............


After giving it a good thorough checking over and finding out it was absolutely solid and generally VERY clean (at least for a saxo anyway) - the decision was all but made and work started straight away.

A few hours later and wallah..........





From a fully complete working VTR to a fully stripped rolling shell in probably less than 3 hours.

The VTR heart was never going to be of any use to me (its the 8v engine) - hence why that had to go. So now, we have to strip the VTS of its heart and work on converting it all over...... all that on top of the work which I originally still had to do in terms of building up the VTS.

Hopefully the setback of now having to do a complete conversion on it is somewhat offset by the fact this shell needs no welding, so theres a lot of time and effort saved there.

I'm left calling in favours left right and central now in a bid to get this all done and everything stripped and swapped over - but the aim is still to have this ready for hot hatch sessions at Knockhill on the 17th.

Admitting defeat isnt in my nature...... It WILL make it.

Plus points:
- I'm now going to have the shell that all the component parts deserve.
- no rust

Negative points:
- So much time and effort went in to that little green fella, its a sore one to take giving up on it.
- Timescales involved
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Mon Apr 04, 2016 7:29 pm PostPost subject:
Dave P
Doune's #1 Fan


Joined: 07 Nov 2007
Posts: 2498
Location: Aberdeen

Reply with quote

What a ball ache, good to see it came good in the end. Smile

You'll be looking for a LSD next?
_________________
Come play my game. Smile
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Tue Apr 05, 2016 5:52 am PostPost subject:
Erik
user


Joined: 16 Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Location: Edinburgh

Reply with quote

Dave P wrote:
What a ball ache, good to see it came good in the end. Smile

You'll be looking for a LSD next?


Absolutely the next big buy for it, but the way things are with money at the moment and after all the unexpected expense - it will have to wait a bit I think.

Keeping half an eye open on the second hand market in case anything crops up though.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Tue Apr 19, 2016 8:28 am PostPost subject:
Erik
user


Joined: 16 Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Location: Edinburgh

Reply with quote

Well...... what a frantic couple of weeks its been!!!

Engine went in fine and up and running pretty quickly. Which essentially took us back to where I was with the green one - just a couple of weeks behind schedule!!





So..... then came a mammoth 33 hour push to get the car in to some kinda usable state for sundays hot hatch sessions.



Front suspension to change, brakes to do, master cylinder to do, rear brake flexis to do, rear axle and shocks to fit, fuel tank to swap over, bonnet catches to do, tow straps to sort out, brakes to bleed, a dash to sort out and build back up, a sunroof to plate, a cage to fit, a seat to fit, harness to fit, tyres to fit.

To be honest, it was starting just to get a bit ridiculous - and perhaps the sensible call woulda been to take the hit on the hot hatch day and just postpone. But stubborness got the better of me in that respect and i was determined we'd get it out in some way shape or form.

I've not got a lot of pics from the period which followed - taking photos wasnt particularly high on the list of priorities sadly.......

However, got there in the end and we ended up here.



First I drove the car was on to the trailer to head up the road. Brand new tyres, brand new brakes and a totally untested car....... made for a pretty nervy first sesssion and I just about spun the thing on my first trip round Macintyres thanks to zero grip at all.

Fast forward a few laps though and the wee thing came in to its own, brakes worked well, tyres started gripping and the car was exactly how it should be.




Ran much better than I expected to be honest and managed to clock up a 64 second lap with a lot of room to improve, very happy with that.

During the 4th session it seemed to start losing power for some reason, felt almost like fuel surge, but there shoulda been plenty fuel in it - suspecting maybe a misfire...... coil pack, fuel filter...... not sure - will need to take a look at it.

All in all though, delighted with the wee thing and how it ran - time to iron out some of the niggles and finished off some of the details a bit better - hopefully next time out will see it improve even more.

Love it. Really really love it.


Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Tue Feb 07, 2017 6:59 am PostPost subject:
Erik
user


Joined: 16 Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Location: Edinburgh

Reply with quote

Jings - Not updated this in a while...... a long while actually!

Turned out that my fuelling issues were due to breather being damaged / blocked - made do with a makeshift breather for the remainder of the year - however without the one way valve in it, that was always going to be a temporary fix.

Racked up just shy of 450 laps in it during the months of April through till the start of November and other than the fuel problem in the first couple of outings, the spark plugs shaking themselves loose a little, and some braking problems - the little car hasn't skipped a beat.

So....... we move on to 2017. I know what the car can do as it stands and this year i'll be hoping to improve on what it did last year.

So for this year, over the next couple of months i'll be renewing all the discs and pads - this time opting for a plain disc rather than a grooved one.

I've stepped up a pad compound to the Carbone Lorraine RC6 now. I'd bought the RC5's last year at a point where i'd still anticipated using the car on the road. Now that its track only I've gone for the RC6.

Tyres all getting renewed, and after the performance of the Nankang AR-1 last year, that's something which i'll be sticking with for this year. A truly awesome track tyre.

Various little service bits to take car of, and of course the new fuel tank breather to fit.

And then on to the stuff which should 'improve' the car......... Sadly, due to other commitments (i'm buying a new house), theres not a whole lot of money in the pot this year - so I've not been able to go down the 'more power' route.

Instead I've opted for the 'less weight' route as an alternative means of going faster. Ordered up a fibreglass bonnet and tailgate from the guys at CCF which arrive last week and are currently awaiting some paint. I'd initially contemplated getting doors as well, but with only a single door bar on my car, its not something i'm massively comfortable with.

To go with those, I've got a set of polycarb windows which are currently out for delivery as I write this courtesy of ACW Motorsport plastics.

I'll be gutting the standard doors as best I can and getting rid of as much weight as possible.

Ordered up a satchshift shifter kit for it as well, which is widely regarded as the best shifter / quick shifter you can get for these cars - excited to get that all fit.

Finally when its all done, it'll be getting passed over to the guys at Automek so it can finally get a decent alignment session done.

So...... less weight, brakes back to working properly, and wheels all pointing in the right direction should hopefully see a little bit of improvement on last year.

Buzzing to get back out in the wee thing - I've been having withdrawal symptoms this last few months!

Pics to follow when I get my finger out and start getting it reay for this year Smile
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Tue Feb 07, 2017 8:30 am PostPost subject:
Dave P
Doune's #1 Fan


Joined: 07 Nov 2007
Posts: 2498
Location: Aberdeen

Reply with quote

Cool
_________________
Come play my game. Smile
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Fri Feb 10, 2017 5:00 pm PostPost subject:
ching654
newbie


Joined: 29 Apr 2012
Posts: 50

Reply with quote

Selling my Satchshift if you haven't ordered a new one yet, been trial fitted, other than that as new.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Mon Feb 13, 2017 7:44 am PostPost subject:
Erik
user


Joined: 16 Apr 2008
Posts: 137
Location: Edinburgh

Reply with quote

Cheers for the offer mate but already got mine sitting here ready for fitting Smile
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
 
Post new topic Reply to topic trackscotland.co.uk Forum Index | Projects Goto page 1, 2  Next   Page 1 of 2

View previous topic
View next topic
Display posts from previous:   




You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum