BX versus Xantia - new perspectives
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  1. #1
    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Default BX versus Xantia - new perspectives

    Well I've finally got my hands on our BX 19 Tzi wagon after a work trip away. I wish I'd found it a few years earlier......

    It's hard to compare with the 2.0i Xantia as they are such different cars.

    I'm enjoying the BX enormously. Lots of go compared with everything else we own and just so comfortable - it feels like a car you'd drive all day and come out smiling. A bit creaky here and there and more engine noise than our 306.

    The main things that occur to me are what a car they must have been in the 1990s, let alone the 1980s and what a 16V must be like if this is the 8V and a wagon at that.

    The Xantia's a much more sedate and refined lady, feels generally much tighter heavier and quieter.

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    Is there a thread somewhere that covers finding an accessory belt?

    Thanks

    JohnW

  2. #2
    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnW
    Well I've finally got my hands on our BX 19 Tzi wagon after a work trip away. I wish I'd found it a few years earlier......

    It's hard to compare with the 2.0i Xantia as they are such different cars.

    I'm enjoying the BX enormously. Lots of go compared with everything else we own and just so comfortable - it feels like a car you'd drive all day and come out smiling. A bit creaky here and there and more engine noise than our 306.

    The main things that occur to me are what a car they must have been in the 1990s, let alone the 1980s and what a 16V must be like if this is the 8V and a wagon at that.

    The Xantia's a much more sedate and refined lady, feels generally much tighter heavier and quieter.

    Is there a thread somewhere that covers finding an accessory belt?

    Thanks

    JohnW

    Thought you'd get a surprise.. after all, they are a different car to drive than anything else; feel like a sports car regardless of model. Almost remind you of the old MG.
    About the accessory belt; this seems to be one of the strange things about them. There seems to be nothing as the acceptable standard but having said that, you rarely get into trouble getting one but whereas a standard "V" belt has to be exactly right, these seem to be a case of "near enough will do." I think this is caused due to it being finally adjusted by a jockey wheel. On the 16Vs we've found up to almost 40mm difference in size. To get a new one, the cheapest and least fuss way is to check the number of mini "v"s it has in it (Usually 4 or more commonly 5) and if you look closely at the outer circumference, you should find a number which indicates the length. So say a P5 - 1140 would be a 5 groove belt 1140mm long.
    Dress the belt before you fit it and clean the pulleys as best you can as they seem to invariably squeal like a stuck pig when a new belt is fitted.
    Costwise, I found SuperCheap had a good range of Bosch belts but they are available from Cit dealers for about 2 to 2 1/2 times as much.



    Alan S
    If it ain't broke, use a 12" shifter.....that usually does the trick!!

  3. #3
    Fellow Frogger! Jack Z's Avatar
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    John,

    The TZI might only have the 8V head but it still is a 122hp motor as opposed to the TRI's 108hp.

    In fact at the risk of being corrected by the 16v brigade I "think" that the TZI is essentially the 16v block with the 8v head but I will invaraibly be mistaken on some technical point no doubt on this one...!!!

    Bottom line is we have both a TRI and a TZI in the fleet and I have done many klm's in a 16valve and I personally think as an overall cruiser tourer / city runabout the TZI is head and shoulders better than a 16V in tractability below 4500rpm (the 16valve does nothing below this engine speed) and noticiably more powerful than the TRI.

    Don't get me wrong the 16v is an awsome car but not one you'd want to drive in "city" drving or as a runabout and I know several 16v owners that would agree.

    I think as far as BX's go you've got the pick of the crop.... enjoy
    BX TZI Hatch
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  4. #4
    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Z
    John,

    The TZI might only have the 8V head but it still is a 122hp motor as opposed to the TRI's 108hp.

    In fact at the risk of being corrected by the 16v brigade I "think" that the TZI is essentially the 16v block with the 8v head but I will invaraibly be mistaken on some technical point no doubt on this one...!!!

    I think as far as BX's go you've got the pick of the crop.... enjoy
    Thanks Jack,

    Comments appreciated. It's very tidy too. Some cracks on the front part of the dash (panel with the demister vents), one side of central locking doesn't and a couple of instruments don't work but otherwise it's very good indeed.

    We have an 8V Peugeot 306 and an 8V Xantia too, all with lovely flat torque curves.

    Cheers

    JohnW

  5. #5
    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Z
    Don't get me wrong the 16v is an awsome car but not one you'd want to drive in "city" drving or as a runabout and I know several 16v owners that would agree.
    Most definately.

    I wish I lived far out of the city so I can enjoy this car more. So far the mundane 80kmh commute to work has revealed some of the ugly aspects of the 16v.

  6. #6
    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by macquered
    Most definately.

    I wish I lived far out of the city so I can enjoy this car more. So far the mundane 80kmh commute to work has revealed some of the ugly aspects of the 16v.
    Far be it for me to be the one to say "I told you so" but I think every time anyone has mentioned a 16V as a daily driver, this has been my most constant post.
    They love long fast drives but are absolutely a pain in the U-NO-WOT as an around town car, in fact almost bloody hopeless.
    My drive to Bris & back on the 11th, 3 1/2 hours each way, was superb, now I'm back home, she's in mothballs again where she belongs; I don't need the aggro.!!



    Alan S
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  7. #7
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Hi Guys,

    you wanna get yourselves a nice CX, especially the turbocharged one, not only does it have effortless torque down low, it'd cream a 16valve when it comes to in gear acceleration. 16valvers ride terribly for a hydraulic Cit too (BTW: anyone wanna give me one ).

    Now if only I could get my CX to run again

    The BX is a great car to drive to work an back, uses stuff all fuel, I don't care if some sh!t for brains women in a 4wd bends it in a carpark. I also don't care that it gets left in the direct sun/rain all day at work 'cos it's dash can't get any worse One thing is for sure, with me driving it it's next set of front tyres won't last long, you can't help but hammer the sh!t out of it around town.

    seeya,
    Shane L.
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  8. #8
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Hmm,

    it's interesting, quite a few of us now own a Xantia.

    I think the BX is nippier than the Xantia and handles well. However the Xantia is as heavy as a CX, rides as well as my CX turbo and handles better than the BX. Possibly a BX16valve might handle as well as a Xantia VSX, but it certainly won't ride as well.

    I certainly like the Xantia a lot more personally, and think a turbo diesel VSX Xantia would be a bloody brilliant car (fuel economy, torque AND comfort).

    Me I'll stick with my CX's (if I can keep them running ).

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    'Cit' homepage:
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  9. #9
    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleChevron
    Hmm,



    Me I'll stick with my CX's (if I can keep them running ).

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    Correction!!!

    Me I'll stick with my CX's (if I can keep them running ).

    Should read thus:-

    (if I can get them running.


    Alan S
    If it ain't broke, use a 12" shifter.....that usually does the trick!!

  10. #10
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Yep,

    and the best bit is the fix is free It just needs 1 connector cleaned under the bonnet, it's obviously a connector I have missed. Please point out which connector it is

    Every single problem (short of the fuel regulator dying) I have had with this car has been fixed by cleaning/fixing dodgy wiring connections.

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    'Cit' homepage:
    Citroen Workshop
    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:
    '07 Poogoe 407 HDi 6spd manual

  11. #11
    1000+ Posts TroyO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan S
    Far be it for me to be the one to say "I told you so" but I think every time anyone has mentioned a 16V as a daily driver, this has been my most constant post.
    They love long fast drives but are absolutely a pain in the U-NO-WOT as an around town car, in fact almost bloody hopeless.
    Ok, at the risk of asking a potentially stupid question, but what is it about the 16V BX that makes it pain to drive around time compared to an 8V BX? A complete lack of low down torque?

    Troy.

  12. #12
    Administrator GreenBlood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TroyO
    Ok, at the risk of asking a potentially stupid question, but what is it about the 16V BX that makes it pain to drive around time compared to an 8V BX? A complete lack of low down torque?

    Troy.
    Troy, these guys are just a bunch of wimps

    Since I have taken ownership of mine in I think November last year up until a few weeks back I have been driving mine (by choice) as my daily drive. This is short runs through peek hour in the morning and the occasional use during the day, all city driving, apart from the fact that the suspension is no where near as compliant as the rest of the fleet, I really don't have a problem with it. The only real frustration is that you can't drive it to it's potential, but then what car can you in these circumstances. Peek hour in Sydney might have me driving the XM by choice but here in Bris stop/start is really not that bad.

    The points made are of course valid, the engine is not on song until you hit 3000 - 3500rpm, these cars really excel on a spirited drive on the open road, great fun driving mine home after picking it up in Sydney, it's a much better sorted car now so can't wait to get it back from the panel beaters and get back into it again

    Cheers
    Chris
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    "Déesse" Roland Barthes, 'Mythologies', 1957

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  13. #13
    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    Troy,

    There's several things.
    Firstly, a slow running, stop/starting 16V will have either the fan running all the time if it has a good cooling system and the correct fan thermo switch fitted or be hovering around 100 - 105 on the temp gauge if it hasn't with the potential to boil its head off at the drop of a hat given the correct set of circumstances.
    They have a solider clutch (or should have) so apart from the strong left leg you develop, they also tend to feel like they want to jump out from under you in traffic if you have a few revs up when you let the clutch out. The revs the engine has to operate at also means that the wear factor seems much higher on a 16V to an 8. (You often hear of clutch jobs in 16Vs but far fewer in 8Vs yet there's more 8 than 16 around.)
    With the way the ABS operates in comparison to the normal BX brakes, you tend to have to stab the pedal and then back off to control stopping distance as opposed to just easing pressure on the pedal and increasing the pressure as it's required. This becomes particularly interesting if you have the villiage idiot driving a 4WD tailgating you so he can get a closer look at this car his tiny little brain has been trying to identify when he raced up behind you; something that happens with monotonous regularity.
    The idler stepper motor tends to get a bit sticky as the cars age and whilst this is no problem on the open road, it can tend to be a real pain when in traffic as on open running, it rarely gets bback to idle but when it throws a funny, it can cause a couple of things. One is stick on about 1500 - 2000 rpm which causes a lot of heads to stair at the twit with the high revving engine, or the other is to drop back to 4 - 500 rpm instead of the 900 - 1000 rpm and cause the occasional stalling.
    Being by nature a high revving motor, you tend to have to keep in the lower gears more to go with the flow in traffic otherwise they can tend to do a lot of missing and bucking when you try to accellerate.
    Possibly one of the best if not the best distance touring car I have ever driven. At teh FCD in Brisbane I took an old mate of mine down for the day which is about 3 1/2 hours each way; this guy is 80 and his response to me when we got home that night was "I didn't realise Brisbane was such a short drive away" because even though he has lived in the area most of his life, he reckoned it was the easiest trip there & back he'd ever had. However, we struck a bit of traffic on the way down at one stage when we were almost there and I can tell you, that was by far the most unpleasant part of the journey.



    Alan S
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  14. #14
    Fellow Frogger! nchandler's Avatar
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    Whingers. Drive a 205 in traffic. A mildly worked one at that.

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    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nchandler
    Whingers. Drive a 205 in traffic. A mildly worked one at that.
    Hoy, 'ang on a minute.
    I'm not complaining; I enjoy driving but my point is why drive something that doesn't feel comfortable in its surrounds when you can drive something that does? If I were living & driving in Brisbane all the time (apart from going bloody insane) I wouldn't be driving a 16V; what's the point? 200+ kph car in a 50kph speed limit area that feels like a square peg in a round hole, when I could drive say a TZi that feels totally at home in it?
    My idea of a short drive here is to a neighbouring town that is about 45klms away and is 100 most of the way. Even a trip into Town for me going via the back road (100kph) is about 12 - 15klms and that's just far enough to wet your appetite.
    To me, owing a 16V solely for City driving is akin to owning a bottle of fine wine on a desert Island and not having a corkscrew.



    Alan S
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  16. #16
    1000+ Posts TroyO's Avatar
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    Thanks for that Alan.

    Quote Originally Posted by AlanS
    Firstly, a slow running, stop/starting 16V will have either the fan running all the time if it has a good cooling system and the correct fan thermo switch fitted or be hovering around 100 - 105 on the temp gauge if it hasn't with the potential to boil its head off at the drop of a hat given the correct set of circumstances.
    The temperature issue had me thinking about a problem my dad had with his Fiat Regata running hot in some heavy traffic situations. What he did was add a switch which could allow him to turn on the thermo fan whenever he felt it was necessary. Useful perhaps?

    Quote Originally Posted by AlanS
    They have a solider clutch (or should have) so apart from the strong left leg you develop, they also tend to feel like they want to jump out from under you in traffic if you have a few revs up when you let the clutch out. The revs the engine has to operate at also means that the wear factor seems much higher on a 16V to an 8. (You often hear of clutch jobs in 16Vs but far fewer in 8Vs yet there's more 8 than 16 around.)
    Yeah, the clutch, I'm used to that. Everycar I own either has a heavy (Fiat Superbrava) or sticky (Xsara 1.8) clutch feel. You just grow a bigger left leg.
    Haven't burnt any clutches out yet.

    Quote Originally Posted by AlanS
    With the way the ABS operates in comparison to the normal BX brakes, you tend to have to stab the pedal and then back off to control stopping distance as opposed to just easing pressure on the pedal and increasing the pressure as it's required. This becomes particularly interesting if you have the villiage idiot driving a 4WD tailgating you so he can get a closer look at this car his tiny little brain has been trying to identify when he raced up behind you; something that happens with monotonous regularity.
    It get the tailgaters off your back. The braking technique with a BX or most hydro Citroens is different to a conventially braked car. It's not something I have really got my head around, I have never driven a hydropneumatic Cit before.

    Also the RE: the stepper motor, isn't that something than can be fixed. Erratic or high idle, yeah that can be pain. The freaking autochoke on the Superbrava used to give the shits. It would either not cut out when the engine warmed up, leaving the car idling at 1500rpm, or it would cut too early, (like the moment you first drive), causing the car to stall (it would run very lean when cold) everytime you'd stop until it had warmed up.

    Troy.

  17. #17
    Administrator GreenBlood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan S
    To me, owing a 16V solely for City driving is akin to owning a bottle of fine wine on a desert Island and not having a corkscrew.
    Geez Alan, ya must be getting old mate, "oooh my poor old leg if I have to change gears one more time...." Matey we'll have to find you a nice comfy auto, some of those beaded set covers and a hot water bottle....., if I didn't know you better.

    Seriously though, if you were driving in traffic everday you would have fixed your idler stepper motor (yes) I don't know what you mean re: ABS, my brakes don't require any special technique, just a dab to slow down, a serious jab will result in the ABS cutting in (as you would expect) no different to the XM?? The clutch is stiff compared to an 8 valve yes, but 5 minutes in the car and you've adjusted. Really the most pertinent point you raise is perhaps that these cars will run hot in traffic, so your not doing the 'mowta' any favours. They are not an outright performance car, and can still be a ball of fun even around town. We city dwellers have to live with our lot, don't deny us one of lifes little pleasures brrrrm brrrmm....

    There's more than one way to open a bottle if you don't have a corkscrew

    Cheers
    Chris
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  18. #18
    1000+ Posts cruiserman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan S
    This becomes particularly interesting if you have the villiage idiot driving a 4WD tailgating you so he can get a closer look at this car his tiny little brain has been trying to identify when he raced up behind you; something that happens with monotonous regularity.
    Alan S
    I get them in the cruiser too Alan. Idiots that want to sit in my back door. Perhaps they want to get a beer out of my Engel fridge
    That is when the real fun of having electic trailer brakes fitted. Just flick the lever that trims the trailer should it get out of shape, the brake lights come on and the tailgater rapidly jumps on their brakes. I keep driving merrily alogn as all that happened to the cruiser is the lights came on not the brakes. The look on their faces is priceless. Eyes like dinner plates.
    Neil
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  19. #19
    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    i won't get into any 4WD debates, but where it gets scarey up my way possibly more than anywhere else is that up here they jack them so high you often find the underside of them above bonnet height on a 16V and they use those big round sand tyres with no grip on bitumen, particularly wet stuff and no rear mudguards.
    I've had a couple so close that when I've stopped at a normal intersection on a couple of occasions I've pulled to one side as I could see they were going to hit and in one case he went a full cars length past me before he stopped.
    I'm still awaiting the 'social call' from our greenblooded friend so I can show him the other side of life.


    Alan S
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan S
    Dress the belt before you fit it and clean the pulleys as best you can as they seem to invariably squeal like a stuck pig when a new belt is fitted. Alan S
    Howdy Alan - how do you dress a belt? (No, this isn't a joke guys...)

    Cheers

    Stuey

  21. #21
    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    The oldest trick in the book is to get a cake of Sunlight soap or similar (pure soap not the poofy stuff) and soak overnight in water.
    Get the jelly like external slop and coat the working surface of the belt all over.
    In the case of these serpentine belts, also make sure the grooves are nice and clean also.

    Alan S
    If it ain't broke, use a 12" shifter.....that usually does the trick!!

  22. #22
    1000+ Posts George 1/8th's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleChevron
    Yep,

    and the best bit is the fix is free It just needs 1 connector cleaned under the bonnet, it's obviously a connector I have missed. Please point out which connector it is

    Every single problem (short of the fuel regulator dying) I have had with this car has been fixed by cleaning/fixing dodgy wiring connections.

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    Hey Shane, have you checked for power to the coil..low tension, points, distributor segments etc...the basic stuff?
    Cheers...George.

  23. #23
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Hi George,

    I guess I better give a little background to this problem. Since just before I went to Maleny in 2003 I've had big problems with the car missing if you put your foot down hard, and it seemed down on power.

    This came to the crunch just before easter this year after I cleaned under the bonnet, while I was rolling up the hose, I heard the car stop in the background (Doh!!!).

    Downside ??? With work and a lot of other stuff needing to be done it took almost a month for me to get running, on the plus side I fixed all the intermitant problems, all the missing problems, infact just about every problem I had with the car by painstakingly cleaning every connector under the bonnet. What would happen is the car would start, but stop as soon as I let the key off. I could keep the car running by wedging the key in the 'start' position after disconnecting the starter soleniod.

    These same symtoms have returned. First though you need to understand a little about the injection on the car. It has Bosch L Jetronic, which is nowhere near as simple as the D jectronic on DS's, however is still quite basic as far as injection goes.

    What you need for the car to run is:

    --power to the coils
    --power to the injectors
    --power to the fuel pump
    --signals from the flywheel sensors.

    Most of the time when CX's will not run, you will find the fuel pump isn't running which can be traced directly to the fuel pump relay that appears to be universally dubbed 'big blue'. This is because it's slightly bigger than a standard relay and is blue

    Big blue is a special relay in that it is a tachometric relay, ie: it measure pulses just like you tacho on the dash. If the motor drop below 200rpm (from memory) the relay shuts off power to the fuel pump and fuel injection relay.

    My problem is quite intriquing as I have the following:

    --Power to the coils
    --Good readings from the flywheel sensors (as measured at the ignition computer)
    --12 volts at the injectors
    --The fuel pump stops AFTER the motor has stalled, this partially rules out 'big blue'.

    I've slowly followed through the wiring schematics and traced over it as I've tested the circuit. Testing the circuit has involved testing continuity, my next step is to test for Voltage and the computers/big blue WHILE trying to start the engine, it is possible that the wiring has good connections when not loaded (ie: tested with a multimeter) that go open circuit when under load.

    This is the circuit diagram that I have been following, hopefully I'll get a chance to sort this next weekend.

    Things to note:

    --You don't need connections to the AFM for the car to run (it'll run poorly without this).
    --You don't need connections to the throttle switch for the car to run
    --You don't need connections to the temp senders for the motor to run (it'd just run rich as buggary if there not hooked up).
    --The motor is NOT running on the cold start injector when first started, disconnecting this has no bearing on if the motor runs.

    Caution, this diagram is 400kb is size:

    CX wiring diagram

    So there you have it

    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:
    '07 Poogoe 407 HDi 6spd manual

  24. #24
    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    8,923

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    Have you checked the ignition switch and wiring as suggested by Brad?
    Also, based on experience from years ago on another car; how many keys and other things do you have dangling off the key ring? Saw a car years back that had auto sparkies and a series of very competant mechanics totally stumped until the guy decided to leave the car until it was "fixed properly" whereupon he removed all the shit he had connected to the key ring and left only the ignition key only to discover that they couldn't find a fault. Picked up car, refitted the bunch to it & back to square one. It took about 3 trips before the penny dropped; no other shit attached to the key ring; car goes. Put it all back and intermittent problem starts all over again. Just used to cut out without warning.
    Sound familiar.?

    Alan S
    If it ain't broke, use a 12" shifter.....that usually does the trick!!

  25. #25
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Ballarat,Vic,Aust.
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    16,424

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    Hi Alan,

    if it was the ignition I wouldn't have power everywhere ....... If I had no power from the ignition I would have no power at the coils, no power at big blue and no power at the fuel injection relay.

    I always have 2set of keys in my pocket, this totals the remote and key for whatever car I'm driving and my other keys on the other ring. Basically the only weight on the ignition is the keyless entry/alarm remote to the car.

    Certainly I haven't ruled out the ignition, infact until I find the problem I haven't ruled out anything. I still haven't had a chance to look at this since last weekend. Hopefully soon, I'm a stubborn determined pr!ck when I want to be and I will NOT let this bloody car defeat me

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    'Cit' homepage:
    Citroen Workshop
    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:
    '07 Poogoe 407 HDi 6spd manual

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