This isn't fun anymore..

Discussion in 'General Motoring' started by Chris Barnard, Nov 18, 2003.

  1. Sorry guys, this is probably just a bit of rant but if anyone has any good
    advice about any of this (other than 'scrap the car') then I'd like to hear
    In the space of a week my trusty old 305 (yes, with my fuel injection
    conversion) seems to be on the verge of dying in the most hideous way. It
    was suffering from an oil burning problem when it was left idling for a long
    time. However, it's never got bad enough to affect the car at any other time
    than if it's left idling excessively.
    A couple of weeks ago I changed a wheel bearing - it was the biggest problem
    I had with the car and it was good to finally get it out of the way, I
    thought the engine would at least last until next summer when I could make a
    decision on whether to refurbish the engine, replace it or replace the whole
    car. Never turns out that way, does it?
    About half way through last week I started noticing a rattling noise under
    acceleration when the engine is cold. It's got progressively louder since
    then, although it's not deafening (yet!). It seems to be coming from the top
    end. It sounds like I've got a sewing machine under the bonnet. Whilst
    listening to the noise, I noticed two other things:
    1. A crack has appeared on the cylinder head where part of the exhaust
    manifold is bolted to the head - but it doesn't seem to leaking any exhaust
    gases though.
    2. I'd lost some water - there wasn't much left in the header tank (it was
    below minimum) and there appeared to be water resting under the front part
    of the cylinder head - as if it was leaking from around there.

    With all this going on, the engine was still running and there hasn't been
    any real noticable drop in power. However, the exhaust keeps coming apart in
    the centre and I think maybe it's caused by excessive engine shaking. I
    replaced the lower engine mount twice earlier in the year (the first new one
    cracked) and now I think the top one has gone.

    Now, today, my brakes have randomly stopped working. They were fine until
    halfway through the day when the pedal started travelling further - it's now
    got to the point where sometimes they work fine and other times I can put my
    foot right down to the floor with hardly any braking. I think maybe I'm
    leaking fluid from the master cylinder? I don't seem to have lost much fluid
    yet though and I can't see a leak.

    In other words (and to put it much more succinctly), my car is undrivable
    and the engine is about to do something nasty. Dammit.
    People tell me I should get a new car. They're probably right, but I am mad
    and I want to keep it. Anyone have anything helpful to say or does this look
    like an almost complete overhaul of the engine bay components?
    To be honest, I think I already know the answer to all this but there's no
    harm in asking and like I said at the start, I'm just ranting about it all

    I have one mental idea... upgrade all the running gear (brakes, suspension,
    etc) and drop in an Mi16 engine. Does anyone know if it's ever been done on
    a 305? (the current engine is an XU)

    Chris Barnard, Nov 18, 2003
  2. Chris Barnard

    Oliver Guest

    The brakes sound like they have the same symptom as mine, and all I had done
    was the rear drum brakes adjusted. Apprantly the self adjusting spring was
    playing up. So you might wanna check that for the engine, it does
    sound a little buggered!

    For the conversion check out not sure if
    they can deal with 305's, but always worth asking!

    Oliver, Nov 19, 2003
  3. Thanks for that tip. I'll take a look. Now I think about it, I did note that
    the rear shoes seemed slightly noisy in the morning - making a kinda
    darth-vader-breathing-noise which had disappeared by the time my brakes
    stopped working. I also noticed a couple of weeks ago that the handbrake
    seemed to be going out of adjustment but the auto-adjuster kicked in one day
    and it all sorted itself out. Maybe something is wrong back there (here's
    But yes, sadly the engine does seem to be on it's last legs. Fortunately, I
    do have a spare carburettor-based cylinder head sitting in my shed, but I'm
    a bit loathed to fit it considering all the changes I made to get the fuel
    injection unit in there. It probably won't just bolt on and go. Maybe I'll
    see if I can get another 405 head out of a breaker's yard. Those petrol XU's
    don't seem to be anywhere near as bullet-proof as the diesel variety.
    Hmmm... I might just do that. To be honest, if I do any further conversions,
    I'll probably do the work myself but it'd probably be worth asking around. I
    think I'd seriously need to upgrade a few things for Mi16 power. The 305
    seems to handle a 405 1.9 inj unit without a problem (although I can get it
    to illustrate the effects of torque steer without too much difficulty), but
    the strain of an Mi16 is probably a bit too far. Still, it's the next step
    up for my poor, mistreated, 305. ;)


    Chris Barnard, Nov 19, 2003
  4. Chris Barnard

    G.T Guest

    Hi Chris,
    I'd bet the rear brake shoes are worn (unstuck).
    Well, I've never seen a brake adjuster working :)
    G.T, Nov 19, 2003
  5. Chris Barnard

    Andrew Kirby Guest

    stopped working. I also noticed a couple of weeks ago that the
    Ooh, ooh, mine did! Honest, for about a week, it really worked!
    (Handbrake, footbrake, click....) After that, it's out with the
    screwdriver, poking through the wheel-nut holes :)

    Andrew Kirby, Nov 19, 2003
  6. Chris Barnard

    steve Guest

    some people just dont want to let go.........take it to a cliff, kiss it on
    the bonnet, and slowly release the handbrake,
    walk away, and don't look back....not even a small glance over you shoulder.
    (by the way, make sure no-one is sunbathing on the beach below)

    and just for added measure, i have a stunning 306 xl for sale....
    steve, Nov 19, 2003
  7. I'll check at the weekend... but they were new maybe three years ago? For
    now, I'm having to drive my Dad's Citroen BX! (argh!)
    I'm sure we've had this discussion before. I maintain that my brake
    adjusters work fine. If it turns out that the adjusters have caused this
    problem then I might have to change my mind, but the system on the 305 seems
    to work very well and I've never needed to manually adjust the rear brakes.

    Chris Barnard, Nov 19, 2003
  8. *sigh*.... Really - I think I'd have to look back if I'd just pushed a car
    off a cliff - I mean could you really say that you didn't look when you'd
    just pushed a car to it's doom in a vertical drop?
    If you must know, I've told everyone that my car is invincible so I can't
    let them down ;)
    Argh!! Don't say things like that!

    Chris Barnard, Nov 19, 2003
  9. Chris Barnard

    miknik Guest

    I would forget that, it would cost an absolute fortune to get the
    suspension and brakes up to the standard that could cope with 160bhp,
    and I bet it would drive horribly.

    The project:

    Put this -

    in here -
    miknik, Nov 19, 2003
  10. Well, I'm not so sure myself. The 305 GTX (which I have) has the same size
    vented discs as fitted to many 309s, 205s, 405s, etc. The whole drivetrain
    is basically the same, as most late-80's/early 90's XU-engined pugs would
    have been derived from the XU version of the 305 - many parts are shared and
    I often have to buy drivetrain parts listed as for the 405/205 which fit
    straight onto my 305. The fact that I was able to fit a 405 cylinder head
    directly onto my 305 engine seems to indicate this point quite well (ok,
    sure it's dying now but I got the head out of a scrapyard from a car with
    over 100,000 miles and did hardly any refurb work on it other than a
    dismantling and cleanup). I also know for a fact that 405 SRi front discs &
    calipers will fit onto the 305 without a problem, as will bilstein shocks
    for a 309 GTi.
    That EFI head I shoved on should have given me roughly 20-25 bhp gain, I
    doubt it was that much in practice, but it was certainly very noticable and
    the car coped with it very well. I have a great deal of confidence in the
    305's handling with it's 185/14s - it's never failed to impress me. I would
    definately want to uprate certain things for the extra power but hardly
    anything would have to be custom made or modified to fit. My primary concern
    would be whether the chassis could handle the increase in power, or if it
    would have to be strengthened in some way - but then we can look at the fact
    that there was a 16v Citroen BX doing the rounds when the 305 was in
    production. Surely it's gotta be at least as good as that?!?!?!??!
    I guess the real fun here though is in the challenge. I like a challenge and
    I like doing stuff that maybe hasn't been tried before. I know of someone
    that fitted a 305 van with a modified 1.9 turbo diesel engine from a 405 but
    I don't know of an 305 Mi16 in existence. Maybe it wouldn't work and maybe I
    won't go down this route just yet as it's an expensive project whatever way
    you look at it. But it'd be damn cool to find out.

    Chris Barnard, Nov 19, 2003
  11. Chris Barnard

    Andrew Kirby Guest

    auto-adjuster kicked in one day and it all sorted itself out.
    Bah, I want none of your soulless machinery. I want a car to have
    character. I like the fact that I have to thump the dashboard to get the
    fan to work, and who needs the radio on at the same time as the headlights?
    As for the leaky sunroof, I prefer to think of it as my own personal in-car
    shower, years ahead of it's time.
    Andrew Kirby, Nov 20, 2003
  12. Chris Barnard

    steve Guest

    soulless ???? we are talking about french engineering here.......soulless
    along with bland, undesirable, annoying, frustrating, inconcievable, sanity
    destroying, and just plain boring is all part of the package.

    you know you want it.......................
    steve, Nov 20, 2003
  13. Ahh yes. One particular favourite of my car is that sometimes the sidelights
    dashboard indicator doesn't come on unless you hit the console. It's those
    little things that make all the difference (aahh)...
    Actually, your description reminded me of my brother's old Fiat Uno he used
    to own. The radio would switch off it you flashed the main beam and the only
    way to get it to come back on was to turn the interior fan off and back on
    again. That was crazy.

    Chris Barnard, Nov 21, 2003
  14. Chris Barnard

    G.T Guest

    Yes, soulless, possibly if you consider Pugs starting up at first try every
    morning God makes :)
    Er, would you buy a Rover 45 ?
    G.T, Nov 21, 2003
  15. Chris Barnard

    G.T Guest

    Damned, it means it worked at least two times :)
    BTW, could you recall the exact procedure, perhaps I'm not performing that
    That's the way it usually works :)
    G.T, Nov 21, 2003
  16. Chris Barnard

    G.T Guest

    Hello Chris,
    Perhaps you'll find another head quite easily (you also could try a 205GTi
    head). XUs are bullet-proof :)
    Wow, a 8v head & injection on a 305 should be a weird thing, it must rock,
    but a Mi16 engine should be quite dangerous... But you can try this;
    considering that in UK you could well run a R4 (commonly called "4L", here)
    with a Porsche engine (which would be the most dangerous car ever).
    Oh, a friend of mine's running a 205 GTi 1.6 (105HP version) with a 405 SRi
    lump, 1.6 flywheel (which is lighter), 1.6 head (gives a high compression,
    fitted 'cause it was easier to fit rather than adapting the 1.9 injection
    system), and 1.6 gearbox. It definitively rocks, skidding on 3rd gear if
    hardly driven, max speed 190KPH - but you reach it as fast as a bullet !
    He also has 15" alloys, which I think helps traction (but not enough :) ).
    G.T, Nov 21, 2003
  17. Chris Barnard

    Andrew Kirby Guest

    Yup. Actually, it worked for long enough to take up the space left when
    re-fitting the drum, which is as much as I could expect, really.
    If I remember correctly, I think you apply the handbrake, then the
    footbrake, then the handbrake, then the footbrake, etc... until the height
    to which you pull the handbrake lever stops dropping (or when your
    assistant, peering through the wheel-nut hole, can't see or hear the
    adjuster moving anymore.)

    I need to replace my rear shoes sometime in the next few weeks, so I'll
    figure it out again, and post the procedure then.

    Andrew Kirby, Nov 21, 2003
  18. I think I should be able to get another one. It's probably the best thing to
    do - and this time I'll refurbish it properly before putting it on the car!
    However, first I think I need to get those brakes sorted out.
    Yeah it does!! It has a lot of power but the old 305 seems to handle it
    quite well. Definately a lot of fun.
    Yeah, an Mi16 on a 305 would be pushing the boundaries a bit.. but hey,
    that's part of the fun! Did you know that while Peugeot were developing the
    205 T16 for rallying, they also developed a prototype 305 rally car with the
    V6 out of a 604 and rear-wheel-drive. Some guy called Jean Todt preferred
    the 205 though... really can't understand why.. it's not like it did
    anything special ;)
    :) ).

    I can (sorry, *used to*) get a similar speed out of my 305 with it's
    original BE1 gearbox - I think more wouldn't be too difficult with maybe a 6
    speed box or something because it would hit the redline in 5th fairly soon
    and that would be it - no more power.

    Chris Barnard, Nov 21, 2003
  19. Chris Barnard

    miknik Guest

    Calipers and shocks aren't cheap though, and if you change shocks you
    really want to change springs too. It's likely to cost you a lot more
    to uprate these items than your engine will cost you.
    That's the spirit, these things are never cheap (usually spiralling
    upwards in cost from first estimate until job done!) But it's all
    about the grin factor, and it would be pretty funny leaving Golf GTIs
    etc in the dust in your 305. MI16s are cheap as chips nowadays though,
    so unless you are hell bent on having an MI16 305 you would probably
    do better to just buy a 405 MI16 and run round in that.

    The project:

    Put this -

    in here -
    miknik, Nov 22, 2003
  20. Agreed - it won't be cheap and yes just buying an Mi16 would be a cheaper
    option... I guess I just like to do things the difficult way. It would be a
    lot of fun though >:)
    Anyway, it's all just an idea at the moment. If I ever get the project off
    the ground I'm sure I'll post about it.

    Chris Barnard, Nov 22, 2003
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