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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Ellesmere Port
    Posts
    657

    Default Re: The next WirralSmarts car

    As an aside, I had the wheels fitted at the place where I had the tyres fitted (with tracking) and I gave them the correct nuts but are they on the right way around? It just looks a bit... wrong the way they are at the moment...
    Your nuts are on the right way round !
    The rounded ends fit into the "hole" in the wheel , the other way around would damage the steel .

    Last edited by PhilDPerv; 8th May 2016 at 00:37.
    Some mornings it just doesn't seem worth it to gnaw through the leather straps

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Somewhere on the Wirral
    Posts
    968

    Default Re: The next WirralSmarts car

    Quote Originally Posted by PhilDPerv View Post
    Your nuts are on the right way round !
    Many thanks, I would have thought wider end of the nut would be the side facing the wheel but then again the 450 bolts have the same thing going on I guess.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Somewhere on the Wirral
    Posts
    968

    Default Re: The next WirralSmarts car

    Day 10
    Apologies for not updating recently, I've been working on a few other things and I need to keep the car running until after the WirralSmarts event on the 18th of June. That means no demolishing the car.

    We went on a trip and picked up a multi-function steering wheel. For 60, it was worth the trip and from reading on the ForFour forum, it should work with the dual display speedometer I have in the car at the moment.



    However, it was missing the paddles (which it should have had) so I spent a bit more getting a salvaged multi-function wheel with them on and then transferred them over. It still needs a bit of treating with leather cleaner and a bit of colour but it can go back into the car as is at the moment. (I promise it is the same wheel!)



    Of course, there is still the issue of attaching it to the car. As I understand it, it is a case of disconnecting the battery, wait 15 mins, undo the airbag, remove the nut, disconnect the clock ring and then repeat in reverse to install the new wheel. Guess there will also be a trip to a STAR machine to get the airbag warning light deactivated if it comes on. I believe that no-one has successfully retrofitted paddles before so that will be interesting... wires on those paddles are hair filament thin!

    The next course of action is to finish the interior stuff with the armrest being the notable thing. Once that is done, the next thing is the exterior which means all the panels are coming off to be painted. While they are off, I'll get the replacement headlamp projectors installed along with the parking sensors et al. August -> November is going to be busy. ^^;

    Also, I've been considering doing something with the engine. I know that remapping would result in fairly minimal changes but the car's list figure BHP is 95 and it bugs me that it is not 100. A little more than 5% difference (which I think is achievable) and do something with the exhaust. I'd appreciate any thoughts on that front.


    Fit Dash Pods - DONE
    Refurbish throttle valve - DONE
    Fit Navigator - DONE
    Fix high level brake lights bulbs - DONE
    WirralSmarts event
    Fit Armrest
    Replace heater bulb light
    Refit glovebox
    Refurbish + fit Steel Wheels - DONE
    Gaydon
    Paint panels
    Fit parking sensors
    Unspecified engine work
    Fit Headlamp projector units
    Install rear facing camera
    Fix roof blinds
    Beaulieu

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Somewhere on the Wirral
    Posts
    968

    Default Re: The next WirralSmarts car

    Day 11
    After running the WirralSmarts event today, I took a brave pill and decided to crack on with the steering wheel change. The results are mixed so far.

    Before starting (remembering to disconnect the battery first), I decided to check out the underside of the car. I've seen it before but I wanted to get some photographs of how it is under there. The exhaust looks decidedly second hand though I think it is mostly surface rust. The pipes looks OK I think but it may want to all be changed anyway as I think these are the original exhaust parts...





    Also examined the oil leak from the engine. I think, given the photo and where the leak is, it might be either a oil pressure sensor or a oil level sensor. From the image, I think a seal has perished so I am not too worried about it at the moment though it is something else to do on the engine.



    After waiting 15 minutes, I removed the steering wheel. This is possibly the scariest thing I have ever done in a Smart to date. With a bit of effort to get the wheel off the splines, I got the steering wheel off relatively easily, making a lot of mess in the process. ;D



    However, I can't put the new one on the car as there is an extra wire for the controls on the steering wheel and I cannot see where it plugs into. I get the sinking feeling that this would involve some more wiring...



    So at the moment, my car is going nowhere.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Somewhere on the Wirral
    Posts
    968

    Default Re: The next WirralSmarts car

    Day 12
    A small update, I've put the original steering wheel back together and reattached it back onto the car. I ordered a new slip ring to fit the MF wheel onto but it turns out that A454 545 03 26 is for the non-MF wheels whereas A454 545 02 26 is the correct part so I've ordered the wrong part.

    That being said, I've managed to impress myself by not setting off the airbag in my steering wheel as is. :P Also changed my pod rings for a set of gloss black ones I had from a damaged set of pods so at least my interior now looks a bit more co-ordinated. Now just need to reassemble the centre console after getting something to fit into the video fakra connection port in the COMAND unit.


  6. #26
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Somewhere on the Wirral
    Posts
    968

    Default Re: The next WirralSmarts car

    Day 13
    Today was the day I felt brave enough to tackle the steering wheel. So I whipped off the old steering wheel (after disconnecting the battery and waiting of course) and put on the new SRS clock spring, The instructions are pretty clear on it but I think I fouled that up (more on that later).

    Anyway, with the steering wheel on the car, it looks the business. I don't mind the 3 spoke wheel but this one just looks more in keeping I think (might be biased, I had one in Melanie, my last 454).



    For those interested, the 5 pin connection for the buttons on the steering wheel are on the bottom but you do need to clip it in first and feed through the horn and airbag wires before putting the wheel onto the column.



    With that done and the nut fastened down, I reconnected the horn and airbag, screwed the airbag down, said the Lord Prayer and then reconnected the battery. With that, success! I didn't set off the airbag and the car burst into life when asked. You'll also note that I managed to get myself yet another twin display speedometer but this one was from a petrol automatic rather than a diesel manual so the gear display is back along with the rev counter showing the correct range. It is slightly different to the mk1's speed calibration (this one reads 10, 30, 50, 70 etc whereas as the mk1 goes 20, 40, 60, 80 so forth) but I think it should be OK.



    The buttons on the steering wheel work out of the box. Really pleased that they work but the paddles do not (I know that this hasn't been successfully done yet) and when you move off, the ESP warning light comes on. I think, being the rather impulsive soul, that I might not have calibrated the SRS clock ring correctly but I guess a trip to a STAR machine is in order anyway.

    Still mighty pleased this is done!

    I also picked up a RCA to Fakra connection for the COMAND unit just to fill the gap until I know what to put in it. Once it arrives and is fitted, I can finally put the centre console back together (in time for Gaydon I hope)!

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Somewhere on the Wirral
    Posts
    968

    Default Re: The next WirralSmarts car

    Hey Everyone!

    A small update today. Gaydon was wonderful as always but I felt that the 454 was a bit... underwhelming at the event (maybe it was just me not sticking around the car, I was very busy getting photos).

    One of the issues that the 454 has had is the loose negative battery terminal which wasn't too bad but the wire must be damaged internally as every so often, when you come to start the car, the whole electrical system would just shut down which could be fixed with a wiggle of the battery lead. Not good.

    After several bouts of moaning (I had to park about way up the street to do this and having to trot up and down the street 5 times to get the right tools), I've got the new earth leads in with a fetching shade of red on them.



    They are not ideal mind as they are long and will need to cable tie the engine earth to the loom to stop it hitting the drive belt but it looks good, certainly better than the crusty leads before hand.

    Next port of call is the wheels and then the major exterior work. I like the wheels on there now but they are not fitting in the planned style I have for after the car is painted and besides, I have some eyes on some Cruiselines which will look awesome when done, perhaps paint them a similar shade of grey to the frame and maybe paint the callipers yellow.

    I also got hold of some leather paint to recondition the steering wheel with. That will be worked on this weekend hopefully.

    Seeya all on the net!

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Somewhere on the Wirral
    Posts
    968

    Default Re: The next WirralSmarts car

    The last few weeks have been about improving the look of the car. Along with the earth wires, I've got a hold of some leather paint for the steering wheel. Cleaned up the areas where the paint had come off and dabbed the new paint on.

    Before:


    After:


    It isn't perfect and needs polishing up but it makes the steering wheel look a little better.

    Also took the opportunity to clean up the headlamps with toothpaste to try and make them a little clearer. Wiped them with the toothpaste, washed it off and then polished them up with some car polish. I can't tell if they are any better but with the short amount of time I've got until S2Smarts and not risking taking the car off the road due to sanding, I am reasonably happy with them.

    Before:


    During:


    After:


    Finally, the engine cover looked fairly worn. I cleaned it up with a good wipe down but the paint on the letters looked fairly worn. So went out and I bought a silver Sharpie and got busy colouring in after lightly sanding the letters and logo (easily the most relaxing thing I have done that day). The trick is to take it slowly and don't be so harsh.

    Before:


    The "a" before being coloured in:


    The "a" after being coloured in:


    After:


    None of this is going to make that much a difference to the car technically but hey, at least it looks a bit better

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
    Posts
    28

    Default Re: The next WirralSmarts car

    Hi, was your door handles in presentable condition? Mine under the tropical heat and rain seems to have it off faded.

    Was thinking of either spray painting it to glossy black or plasticdip them in black.

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Somewhere on the Wirral
    Posts
    968

    Default Re: The next WirralSmarts car

    Hi there, my door handles are in a reasonable condition though they are getting a bit faded. I wouldn't do either a paint or a plastidip straight away though, I'd use some gel to see how well it takes to cleaning it first - it is a bit less permanent and returns a stock look.

    http://www.wirralsmarts.co.uk/mainte...uide.php?id=36

    If it doesn't work or hold for very long, I'd paint them rather than plastidip them as door handles are one of those regular use items that want a bit more adhesion than plastidip. If you went for a glossy black, you'd end up with similar looking door handles to the ForFour style concept car, which I personally think looks awesome.
    Last edited by Ocracoke; 19th August 2016 at 09:38.

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