DS sitting in a paddock.. Should I?
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  1. #1
    Tadpole
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    Default DS sitting in a paddock.. Should I?

    Hello everyone, my first post here of what may or may not be many to come..

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    A little bit of back story.

    Ive always been a huge fan of the Citroen DS, even very early in my car enthusiast days, i admired them for their design and technology. I spotted one years ago in a paddock and was always disturbed by it being abandoned and left to rot, but i was never 100% sure it was a DS.

    I work very early morning shifts, and monday night i woke up quite a bit early and couldnt get to sleep again after having a very vivid dream about a Citroen DS. Not being able to sleep again i decided to get up and watch some youtube clips about the DS and do some research.

    I also decided to satisfy my curiosity and i got onto google maps and used street view to get a better view of the DS thats been sitting in this paddock for many years.

    Anyway, im seriously considering visiting the house next to where this DS is, and seeing what they want to do with it.

    Im pretty confident it will be very rough, but ive owned two VC valiants, one of which had sat in a paddock for nearly 20 years, so ive had my share of rust and hard work.

    More than anything, i just feel like i should rescue this car before it crumbles away and is lost forever. It may be good for parts, or could even be one of those rare cars that has managed to survive.

    My girlfriend loves the DS, but i currently have a Fiat 126 project in the shed and i have a highly modified S13 Silvia that has been dormant for many years after it got a bit "too modified", so im not sure if i want another undriveable car at the house.

    Basically im after some advice here. Is the DS rare enough that i shouldnt pass this up, or do they pop up a lot in rough condition? Going by the colour, it looks to me like an aussie made model, faded red with a white roof, so im hoping it might be in a bit better condition then an overseas model.

    Are parts THAT hard to find, such as replacement panels or floor pans?

    I sold my VC at the start of the year, and im already missing its beautiful weekend cruising qualities, and i see the DS as something that appeals to my love of quirky, rare unusual cars that would be a great replacement.

    I just hate to see a lovely thing going to waste!

    What do you guys think?

  2. #2
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    If there the ones near Guildford..... I can tell even hurtling past at 100km/h there not even worth stopping the car for. They might have been restorable 20years ago though.

    seeya,
    Shane L.
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  3. #3
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    I don't think you can see those Guildford ones from the road any more, the vegetation has well and truly taken over.
    1963 Morris Cooper 997
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  4. #4
    Fellow Frogger!
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    wHERE DOES ONE START.

    The Safaris are more prone to rust than the sedans. The rear window areas and back floor where the tailgate hinge is, is normally a wipeout if the car has been in the weather. I'd say that it's a gonna but definitely check it out as you never know. Michael ( idear ) has got a late DS23 5 Speed which would be a good project car for someone. I don't know if he would sell it but that is a car that is rough but restorable. The Safaris are rarer than sedans.
    I have a 1968 Safari which is my workhorse and along with the '67 model in my opinion is the best of the lot - - but then we could go on - and - on - on.
    Parts are okay but with a DS you must be keen - - and then you're hooked forever.

    This site is good to keep in touch with as there are some very knowledgable Citroen fans. Michael is in Castlemaine and Shane in Bendigo so it's "Citroen country".

    John
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails DS sitting in a paddock.. Should I?-silent-ones-2.jpg  

  5. #5
    Thank God for my Hydroen harrisson_citroen's Avatar
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    Go for it....Absolutely. Will never regret, these cars are so satisfying to do up.
    DS Un jour, DS toujours !

  6. #6
    Now go make me a sandwich Hotrodelectric's Avatar
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    Not to be too pessimistic, I would enlist someone who is a little more versed in the DS to go look at this one. Rust is a major problem on these, especially in the trunk at the front where the rear suspension anti-roll bar is housed, the side rails, the b-posts, and the roof cantrail. The bootlid and doors are also particularly susceptible. Depending on year and/or fluid type, parts can be surprisingly plentiful or comically scarce. You will be better off with an LHM car- that is, look for green-painted hydraulic components (spheres, steering rack, reservoir). The newer cars are easier to find parts for.

    Fortunately, there is a vast amount of support out there. There are clubs aplenty to choose from (join one- an immense amount of help is available), you're on this board which has it's own clique of tech wizards and many individuals who have "been there, done that, got the cuts and burns to prove it", and there is Tony Jackson's manual site (http://www.agua.nu/ds-files/ ) a must-have for ANY D owner.

    For a first-timer, I would seriously consider the money you want to spend, and look at a few usable examples, too. These are not easy cars to restore. I don't know about the Aussie market, but here you can still get a driving, registerable D for about 5-6K.

    If you do get to look at the car, take photos- LOTS of photos. Even posting a half-dozen or so will at least give us an idea of what you're dealing with.

    The measure of your character isn't what you do when people are watching- it's what you do when they aren't watching.

  7. #7
    Fellow Frogger
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    It's a rather different way of building a car compared to the VC, so you have to approach it a little differently. It depends on what you want, but a rough DS/ID can consume a huge amount of money, which is no doubt true of many restoration projects. The least desirable to the most desirable models will consume roughly the same amount of time and cash, yet be worth significantly different amounts. So, it's worth choosing the right car to begin with and spending a little more at the start can give you a huge leg up during the restoration. Maybe, see if you can buy the paddock car and learn from it even if it's not realistic to restore it? Worst case is you learn something and can sell it on. If you plan to spend more serious money, look around, visit a few people and buy the best car you can to begin with as it's usually less costly overall.

  8. #8
    Contented Peugeot Driver addo's Avatar
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    By comparison, a VC resto is something you'd do before lunch. The only common ground is sheet metal work.

    I reckon the best way to approach owning/restoring a Dee is working backwards from a newer model like a Xantia. That will take the mystery out of the hydraulics overall. Then a CX, in order to get to grips with cars that sink and have less-mainstream PAS. Finally a Dee.

  9. #9
    Tadpole
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    Haha, you guys are good!
    Yes its the car just outside of Guildford.

    Thanks for all the comments, much appreciated.

    The one thing all my projects have in common isa very low budget. I like to do as much work as i can myself, but with something like this, its obvious that its going to require a substantial amount of money.

    Although hard work and daunting, for me the lure of a paddock project is that they can be had for next to nothing. You could pay 6k for a much better condition car, but in the end it could need the same amount of work as the paddock car. I know the advantages are potentially an intact interior and working mechanicals, but you never know what a paddock car can be hiding.

    My first VC had been under a bunch of pine trees and had been tjere for 20 years. With a new battery and some carby love, it fired up and ran like a dream, and did so every time afterwards. This particular VC also managed to avoid all the known major rust spots and was actually a very good car.

    Im still keen to check it out and see if it has anything to offer. It could be a great source of parts for some people here. As a photographer, i think it will be a great subject to photograph and i think there could be all kinds of unseen treasures on that property.

    I just hope im not told i have a purdy mouth.

    I wish i had the cash to buy a better car to start with, but i wont be in a position to do so for a few years, but this coukd be a bit of fun in the mean time!

    So how many DS' were built in australia?

  10. #10
    Contented Peugeot Driver addo's Avatar
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    Before buying anything, I suggest you visit a website like Der Franzose and get to grips with the pricing.

    http://www.franzose.de/en/Citroen-DS-11CV-HY/DS/

    Not that I'm nominating them as an ideal source, but fairly indicative of the high costs of many essential items.

  11. #11
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Hi newoldmate,
    Strictly speaking there weren't any DS's made in Australia, the Heidelberg cars were all ID19s that shared the body shape but are a simpler model with vinyl upholstery, cable operated clutch and normal gearbox. The DS's were all fully imported and had hydraulically operated clutch and assisted gear change, plusher upholstery and other differences. There are several websites that explain the differences in detail. I just purchased a running but not quite roadworthy ID19 and am confidently expecting to need to spend up to 20K over several years (with a lot of work done myself) to bring it up to really good condition. Dino on these forums seems to have lucked into the best unrestored car, from the photos here his run rings around mine. Mine is actually a good car but does have rust holes in the C pillars, some in the floor and not sure beyond that. I wouldn't want more and would have preferred less, but compared to some cars going around, mine is sounder than many. i don't think it has ever been sitting in a paddock...
    I think the message from all of us would be, go in with your eyes open and don't underestimate the impact of substantial rust on the feasibility of being able to bring a car back to life, or not.
    Regards,
    Leconte

  12. #12
    BVH Roger Wilkinson's Avatar
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    I heard the Guildford bloke thinks his heap of rust is worth a fortune.

    A DS sits very low to the ground when its egine is off. If a DS sat under a bunch of pine trees for 20 years it would be completely rusted.

    I think you will be able to find a better restoration candidate for a still reasonable price.

    Roger

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  14. #14
    Fellow Frogger
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    Learn the difference between red and green fluid models. To reduce the cost of restoration, get a green fluid car and get a simpler version like an ID19B or a D Special. Any DS/ID left sinking into a paddock for a few decades has a good chance of having little of it's floorpan left, but it can depend on where it came to rest. An earlier, red fluid car adds some potential problems and left sitting in a paddock for many years it could prove more difficult and expensive to revive than a green fluid car. That's simply because the green fluid car's hydraulics are less likely to be corroded internally.

    Considered a CX? There was a silver one listed on eBay in Horsham over the past month. There were a couple of spares cars with it. That may be a better/cheaper entre to hydraulics Citroens than the paddock DS proposition.

  15. #15
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Does it hurt to be a bit naive. I'm sure many of us started that way and made mistakes and were we any the worse for it. The cars near Guildford are languishing and if you happened to buy one and it was too far gone - - is that so bad ??
    You'll have a parts car and you're on your way.
    Do what you think is best. It might not be but didn't someone say - - it is the journey.

    John.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails DS sitting in a paddock.. Should I?-citroen-ds-56-148-rt-car-w.jpg  

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    Fellow Frogger! fnqvmuch's Avatar
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    - if it helps, iirc, it might be wayne mein

  17. #17
    Tadpole
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    Sometimes it's the car that find you not you find the car

  18. #18
    Tadpole
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    Thanks for all the advice guys!

    FIVEDOOR, those links were very helpful, particularly the images that showed the hydraulic lines in behind the front guards.

    Its images like that that scare me, as i can imagine that over a long period of time, all those lines will have corroded and most likely need replacing. An expensive task.

    I'm in no way naive, i'm perhaps a little too enthusiastic and optimistic at times, but im well aware of the work required. Some cars are more technical, but elbow grease and time costs the same on any car.

    I will be sure to pop into that house and have a look the next time i'm going by, but having taken your advice, i dont think ill be rushing there any time soon and dragging one back. (BTW, is it just the one visible from the road, or are more hidden away?)

    Has anyone ever been there before? I know of a few others in that area, which seem like a bit of a coincidence really.

    gilberthenry Is that image you posted of one of the cars near Guildford?

    dogbarkdxm So very true.

    Cheers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gilberthenry View Post
    Does it hurt to be a bit naive. I'm sure many of us started that way and made mistakes and were we any the worse for it. The cars near Guildford are languishing and if you happened to buy one and it was too far gone - - is that so bad ??
    You'll have a parts car and you're on your way.
    Do what you think is best. It might not be but didn't someone say - - it is the journey.

    John.
    Either I need new glasses or that appears to be a 2 door?

  20. #20
    VIP Sponsor David Cavanagh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave_R16TS View Post
    Either I need new glasses or that appears to be a 2 door?
    I use to see that 2 door parked on the side of the road in Williamstown back in the 70's. Whats the story with it?
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    DS
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    Its images like that that scare me, as i can imagine that over a long period of time, all those lines will have corroded and most likely need replacing. An expensive task.
    The cars frame will rust away well before an issue with pipework.

    I feel THE most expensive part of restoring a DS is fixing rust in the frame. Take that well into consideration for any DS you think of buying.
    Citroen Car Club of New South Wales member.

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    Contented Peugeot Driver addo's Avatar
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    It's certainly the hardest to "beat" by playing swapsies with donor panels. My stomach turns at the thought of how many well-presented cars there are with bad chassis repairs or failing frames.

    I respectfully suggest our OP refer generally to unidentified variants (eg, the paddock cars) as Dees. That might reduce the level of presumptive error. Otherwise it's a bit like calling all Falcon family variants "Fairmonts".

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    BVH Roger Wilkinson's Avatar
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    Old mate, whatever your name is, that car in the "is this the best project car you have ever seen" thread is the sort of car I am thinkng of when I say there are better ones out there. I dragged it out of a garage in Bendigo in 2004, after some Citroen enthusiasts visiting from Melbourne had pooh-poohed it. I bought it for the sound frame (the most expensive part to restore) and paid a few hundred $ for it. I kept it in a shed myself, and ended up selling it to Shane when I reaslised I would never do it up myself.

    Try to find something similar. I have rescured early Dees from paddocks and they only ever end up as parts cars.

    Roger

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    VIP Sponsor David Cavanagh's Avatar
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    Or, you could save yourself a fortune and just buy this.

    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Citroen-D...item257787d184
    David Cavanagh

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  25. #25
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Wilkinson View Post
    Old mate, whatever your name is, that car in the "is this the best project car you have ever seen" thread is the sort of car I am thinkng of when I say there are better ones out there. I dragged it out of a garage in Bendigo in 2004, after some Citroen enthusiasts visiting from Melbourne had pooh-poohed it. I bought it for the sound frame (the most expensive part to restore) and paid a few hundred $ for it. I kept it in a shed myself, and ended up selling it to Shane when I reaslised I would never do it up myself.

    Try to find something similar. I have rescured early Dees from paddocks and they only ever end up as parts cars.

    Roger
    I wonder what sort of experts they were to walk away from the best early 'D' panels I've ever seen too I guess they might look a little "well used" visually, but there the best set of body panels I've layed eyes on for an early 'D'

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    'Cit' homepage:
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    Proper cars--
    '85 Series II CX2500 GTi Turbo I
    '63 ID19 http://www.aussiefrogs.com/forum/showthread.php?t=90325
    '72 DS21 ie 5spd pallas (last looked at ... about 15years ago)
    '78 GS1220 pallas
    '92 Range Rover Classic ... 5spd manual.

    Yay ... No Slugomatics


    Modern Junk:
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