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The Caramac XSi
#1
After searching for another 306 that was worth buying since the latter half of last year, I bought this: a 1998 306 XSI in blaze yellow. I sold my HDi a month or so ago and a wee project Polo i had to make space and fund the thing after deciding that I wanted a petrol and a 3 door. The wife keeps telling me its the same as a caramac bar, i told her gold is more fitting haha. 

This was bought on eBay (not the first time), ended up giving £410 for it and with transport back to Northern Ireland it landed in my drive for £710 all in. You simply can't buy these over here let alone a good original 3 door for less than £1k so I think I have got a bargain. The bonus is that there are only 2 previous keepers and theres only just shy of 61k on it, with mot history to back this up. It's spent the last 10 years off the road so I'm hopefully going to recommission it. 

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HOME Big Grin Arrived as a non runner as battery was flat, so a new one is getting collected tomorrow. 

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The interior is in really good shape, all it needs is a good hover out and it'll be like new!

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No wrecked bolsters!! 

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The worst of the body work; 

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Currently it needs to following;

- New drivers door lock
- all belts replaced
- all brakes replaced and fluid done
- all filters done
- plugs and oil replaced
- it also needs paint on the roof and a crease pulled from the rear quarter on the drivers side. 

Possible things for MOT are also new shocks and replaced calipers if they are seized, but since i was able to push it into the drive with ease i doubt they are. 

I spent an hour or so earlier finessing the paint on the bonnet to see how well it came up. It went from being matt to looking quite respectable. Just remember that it has been neglected for ten years! I tried to take the same photo to show progression.

After a wash

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Clay bar

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Cutting compound with the orbital 

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Finishing compound with the orbital - the sun was creeping out here so it looks a wee bit deeper

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Lastly, it got blasted with some wax to seal everything. Made some difference!

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This photo doesn't do it justice, its got its sparkle back

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Now I'm just waiting on the new lock coming back and the bits and pieces to let me start to get some work done. First job is the timing belt.
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#2
Hi Chris. I also have an 'R' reg 16v XSi in blaze yellow.  When the GF first saw it she said it was 'baby poo' colour but is quite fond of it now!  The paint on yours has come up really nice with a bit of effort. 

Sounds like you have a fair bit to sort on the car.  Have had to do a lot to mine.  The cam belts require care on these twin cam engines & access is really limited.  Seems like you're in to older cars though so must have some good spannering skills.  Any questions, just ask.

Hope you get it back on the road soon & can start to enjoy it! Smile
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#3
(25-04-2019, 07:58 PM)Mighty306 Wrote: Hi Chris. I also have an 'R' reg 16v XSi in blaze yellow.  When the GF first saw it she said it was 'baby poo' colour but is quite fond of it now!  The paint on yours has come up really nice with a bit of effort. 

Sounds like you have a fair bit to sort on the car.  Have had to do a lot to mine.  The cam belts require care on these twin cam engines & access is really limited.  Seems like you're in to older cars though so must have some good spannering skills.  Any questions, just ask.

Hope you get it back on the road soon & can start to enjoy it! Smile

I will bud, thanks. found access to be tight but once i get the crane onto it and get the engine supported i can pull of the mounts and whatever to else to get at things, as well as raise and lower it as needed. can be no worse than doing it on a vw pd engine, they're tight too. ive a bit of experience on older cars, but with some of stuff ive got this is pretty fresh haha and with being low mileage things are surprisingly ok so far. might pick your brains with getting the belts tensioned properly, im hoping the tensioner has the wee indicator on it, timing belts make me nervous  Rofl
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#4
There are 2 timing belt kits for the 16v engine ...a 136 tooth belt + manual tensioner or 137 tooth belt + automatic tensioner. A '98 model will almost certainly have come with the manual type & recommendations from lots of previous members (+ on the 306gti6 forum) is to stick with the manual tensioner. The auto tensioner apparently has a higher failure rate.
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#5
(26-04-2019, 07:04 AM)Mighty306 Wrote: There are 2 timing belt kits for the 16v engine ...a 136 tooth belt + manual tensioner or 137 tooth belt + automatic tensioner. A '98 model will almost certainly have come with the manual type & recommendations from lots of previous members (+ on the 306gti6 forum) is to stick with the manual tensioner. The auto tensioner apparently has a higher failure rate.

thats great, thanks. the kit i have coming is a gates kit with the manual tensioner so on reflection it should be grand. the gates kit recommends testing the tension of the belt with a tension tester, i take it ill get away without one? not something i have in my tool box.
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#6
Yep, most people use the rule of making sure you can't twist the belt more than 90 degrees on its longest run.  The Pug guides  referred to a proprietry Seem tensioner but no one seems to know how to convert the 45 Seem units required in to the more common units used by most tension measurement tools!

You don't need to put a great deal of force on the tensioner to get the tension about right.  (I over-tensioned one, revealed by a whine from the cam pulleys) & had to re-do it all again!).  The tensioner needs (if I remember right) an 8mm square tool.  I made a tool following advice from another forum ….a short piece of square door handle bar (yes, as in from a house door) welded to a piece of flat bar!
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#7
(26-04-2019, 09:45 AM)Mighty306 Wrote: Yep, most people use the rule of making sure you can't twist the belt more than 90 degrees on its longest run.  The Pug guides  referred to a proprietry Seem tensioner but no one seems to know how to convert the 45 Seem units required in to the more common units used by most tension measurement tools!

You don't need to put a great deal of force on the tensioner to get the tension about right.  (I over-tensioned one, revealed by a whine from the cam pulleys) & had to re-do it all again!).  The tensioner needs (if I remember right) an 8mm square tool.  I made a tool following advice from another forum ….a short piece of square door handle bar (yes, as in from a house door) welded to a piece of flat bar!

8mm is an odd size, I’ll check that before I stand to take anything apart. That’s a good shout though about making a tool for it, I should have everything I need here to make o e up
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#8
Ended up buying a few wee things

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sure theres worse ways to spend money i suppose. thats new discs and pads front and rear, filters, oil, coolant, spark plugs, timing belt kit, water pump and wiper blades. Been a busy two days but all are now on and everything seems ok so far, nothing has fallen off yet! the rear pads were well down and the discs didnt look great so they were swapped out, the fronts look ok but really weren't.

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next on the list is to fit the door lock to the drivers door so i have a working lock again as well as new tyres all round. Once thats done i think I should be ready for MOT. cant wait to be able to jump in and take it a proper run. once its tested ill invest in some new front shocks as well i think, the ones on it look pretty grotty and i dont they will last too long.
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#9
the last few days have been pretty productive and i know have a working lock, fitted and doing its job properly. managed to pick up a set of cyclones for £150 and put some tyres on two of them so once my new wheel bolts have arrived they will go on, genuinely looking forward to getting them on. i also picked up an S16 steering wheel and a stainless centre box so a stainless back box will be on the cards next. tonight the fuel filter was changed and had to get a friend to help, it took some effort to get the old one off, very crusty and the fuel has started to crystallise, very nasty. drained off the last of the fuel from the tank as theres no way it can be good at ten years old! next on the list is get the mot booked and see how we go.

also, a new problem has raised its head. every time i stick on the heater it blows the fuse (30 amp in position 21). real pain, it was fine until i turned on the blower, it ran for a second and then died once the fuse blew. Will need to do some reading and go from there.
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#10
Urghhh, I hate dealing with really stale petrol so rather you than me.   Not sure which fuse is blowing but according to handbook, fuse 5 (10A) is for control side of blower (relay) and fuse 21 (30A) is supply side.  Hopefully mice haven't got in there & munched on the wires!

Fingers crossed for MoT.
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#11
(30-04-2019, 07:34 AM)Mighty306 Wrote: Urghhh, I hate dealing with really stale petrol so rather you than me.   Not sure which fuse is blowing but according to handbook, fuse 5 (10A) is for control side of blower (relay) and fuse 21 (30A) is supply side.  Hopefully mice haven't got in there & munched on the wires!

Fingers crossed for MoT.

thanks for that, my hand book doesnt match the fuse box ive got which is fun, ill check number 5 as well, maybe one caused the other to go. no sign of mice at all, im guessing water ingress.
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#12
yeehaw, rims!

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beyond that, i've been on a mission to try and work out why the aircon and heater blower keeps blowing (pardon the pun) its fuses. swapped out the blower itself and a relay to no avail but after tracking back all the wiring and checking and double checking, it turns out the heater controls had a bad earth. it was a little melty.

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the connection was cleaned up and now makes a good earth but theres no control over the speed of the fan and still no a/c. im guessing that the over loaded circuit has damaged something else somewhere too. next is swap out the heater control panel, even though the circuit itself looks ok, failing that itll be a matter of trying to swap out the blower itself again as the resistor pack inbuilt into it might have failed.

also, picked up a new steering wheel. going to refurb it and fit once i get a wee bit of time.

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the mot has also been booked but its a 4 week wait. in the mean time im going to try and get a cancellation to bring it forward. im also looking for a stainless backbox to compliment the centre section ive picked up.
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#13
Not been a huge load of movement over the past weeks as I've bene away with work but finally had a bit of time at it this weekend. Got the problem with the blower sorted, turned out to be the heater control unit, the blowing fuses must have damaged something inside it but a new (second hand) unit sorted that and now I've got full control over my, em faculties, again.

I also had a big of a saga with the headlights, turns out getting phase 2 twin spot headlights was a bit difficult in that no one seemed to have them, not somewhere i could go and pick them up from anyways, so I threw a set of crystals into it instead and it so much nicer looking, lifts the front no end I reckon.

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Beyond that I also paid a visit to a local exhaust place and had them make up a back box to suit the centre box i picked up. What i didn't take into account was that the rear bumper, being a phase 2, doesn't have the rear cut out for the exhaust tip. Rather than cut the bumper i got the fella to make up a standard end to it until such times as i can get either a phase 1 or 3 rear with the cut out. it'll likely be a phase 1 as they still have the black rub strips, don't really fancy colour coding it, i think the blaze yellow suits a bit of black around it. so, long story short, ignore the pants looking tip on it. it's also pretty loud which i don't mind but it does drone a bit so i might need to go back and get that looked at.

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in the mean time i also got some oem goodness Big Grin

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and head rests!

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all in all its slowly getting there!
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