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  1. #1
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    variety club bash

    Which french car would you choose to enter the Variety Club Bash?

    It has to be at least a 30yo car, and be tough enough to do some dirt road work. No 4wd's are allowed.

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    How do you reckon French cars would hold up against other cars?

  2. #2
    Gone Fishin' Ray Bell's Avatar
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    You're kidding?

    Most French cars that age lap up rough roads, much rougher than the roads in the Bashes...

    And by the way, the Camp Quality Caper is a much better event.

  3. #3
    1000+ Posts n b j's Avatar
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    The Royal Flying Doctor Outback Car Trek is really good too.
    "Do my eyes deceive me, or is Senna's Lotus sounding rough ?" - Murray Walker
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    Budding Architect ???? pugrambo's Avatar
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    a 403 of course
    or in another 5 years do it in comfort in a 604
    3 x '78 604 SL

    1 x '98 306 GTi6

    1 x secret project

    1 x '98 406 STDT troop carrier and i don't care if it stinks, i don't sniff it's arse Death by wank tank

    1 x '99 406SV 5spd wagon, time to burn more fuel

    1 x 1994 605 SV3.0


    WTD long range fuel tank for 605

  5. #5
    Fellow Frogger! BigH's Avatar
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    Try a 404 station wagon.....just completed the Redex Rerun in one.They are big,comfortable and will eat outback roads. Hank.

  6. #6
    Fellow Frogger! Jack Z's Avatar
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    Having just completed the NSW Variety Club Bash from St Marys to Cairns in a 1966 HR Holden (that was on its' SIXTH bash!) I wouldn't do it in anything but a Peugeot 504 (Early 1970 compliance) or perhaps at a pinch a Renault 16 TS and that comes from a die hard Citroen lover (currently own BX and GS).

    Whilst a CIT might lap up bash routes with aplomb, at pre June 1970 Rego you're left with a DS and they are simply too expensive (and fragile) to run as a bash car.

    Sure they might love the rough roads but 6000klms of them, plus cattle grids, plus road kill would simply break them and to make sure they couldn't brake would cost you a fortune.

    Bottom line is a bash is best suited to live axle, rear leaf sprung, low revving, stump pulling american barges (Chev Impala, Fairlanes, Dodge Pheonix)or good old 1960's Holden HR's (maybe even VE Valliant's)

    The nicest drive I had over the ten days was in a 1970 280SE Merc (W108 Series) which soaked up the rough on it's independent rear end but from a practical view point it's got to be an AUSIE or US 6 or V8.

    Remember it's not just the "bash route" that breaks these cars but the loads (two - four people, luggage, spares, fuel, dare I say grog!!)and the support vehicles are really only geared up to keep the "simple" things on the road as are the bush garages along the way.

    Our car did a radiator, front tie rods, rear axle and front brake line (not uncommon) over 10 days, and in each case we were back on the road within an hour....try getting those fixed in a DS in Charleville or Cluncurry...

    As the two Volvo Amazons proved there is a place for a well prepared late 60's european car on the bash (and the Volvos shone as did a 1964 BMW and the 280SE Merc) but IMHO I think a 504 would be the pick follwed by a 16TS.

    PS I haven't done a Camp Quality event but have done 3 bashes and would be hard pressed to fault them as a truly fabulous experience. There might be other events as good but I find it hard to believe there could be any better!

    If anyone has done both I'd love to compare notes....

    Jack
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  7. #7
    UFO
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    Jack, mate...

    Ever heard of the London to Munich Rally? Or perhaps the 1st London to Sydney??

    Do some searches on this forum for either or both and then answer the question again. I might see if I can find a pic of the winner of the London to Munich rally. citroen_

    BTW - get a hold of Evan Green's book, "A Bootfull of Right Arms" About 1/3 of the way through the book you will again find the correct answer. dance

    Considering a recent purchase of yours, you have an extra reason or two to read the excellent story in that book.

    <small>[ 02 September 2003, 09:16 PM: Message edited by: UFO ]</small>
    Craig K
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  8. #8
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    It's a pity they don't have these events for modern cars anymore.

    WRC cars are so modified compared to the road going machines, unlike the stars of the old rallys. I'd love to see how a modern fangled multiplexed machine would cope.

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  9. #9
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    Pug307:
    I'd love to see how a modern fangled multiplexed machine would cope.
    You could always offer your car as a peace offering to the Australian bush and try it out? <img src="http://www.candlepowerforums.com/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smoker5.gif" alt=" - " />

    I'll come along for the ride <img src="http://www.nataliefans.com/forum/images/smilies/clown.gif" alt=" - " />

    Derek <img src="http://www.usualsuspect.net/forums/images/smilies/more1/sosad.gif" alt=" - " />

  10. #10
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    It's actually had practise before. Driving down to Woods Point for hours certain tests out the suspension on any car.

    Bumpy enough to shake fillings out of your teeth!

    <small>[ 02 September 2003, 11:03 PM: Message edited by: Pug307 ]</small>

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  11. #11
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    Well, there was this one time <img src="http://www.hoo-la.com/webmasters/emoticons3d/smil/superman.gif" alt=" - " />

    <img src="http://users.bigpond.net.au/skystar/pics/307xs-dirty3.jpg" alt=" - " />

    It's had practise <img src="http://www.hoo-la.com/webmasters/emoticons3d/smil/ami.gif" alt=" - " />

    The back of the car was all dusty brown, all the dust stuck to the washer fluid.

    Unless you want to bring a support car with a Diag2000 and spare gearbox, I'll pass for now

    Peugeot 307 XS 1.6
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  12. #12
    1000+ Posts n b j's Avatar
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    There's too many electrics and crap in new cars to do it.

    A bit off dust and mud and they stuff up. You can't even get to the engines which are hidden under all the black plastic and controlled by that bloody ECU.

    I have done several of the outback rallies, been a navigator for last 8 years and a driver for last 4 years and nothing goes any better then a 1965 Ford Mustang stripped to the bones and jacked up to the sky with a detroit locker diff'. It just loves the dirt!!!

    Dad and I have rallied old Merc's, Holdens, VW's, Rovers, Valients, Daimlers, Jensons and most resently a Mustang. The mustang is the only car that has lasted more then a few years of serious off road thrashing. But more to the point this is the first car that is no longer a road car, it is seriously custom built for driving through creaks and thick bulldust, etc... at speed wink
    "Do my eyes deceive me, or is Senna's Lotus sounding rough ?" - Murray Walker
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  13. #13
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    UFO:
    Jack, mate...

    Ever heard of the London to Munich Rally? Or perhaps the 1st London to Sydney??

    Do some searches on this forum for either or both and then answer the question again. I might see if I can find a pic of the winner of the London to Munich rally. citroen_

    BTW - get a hold of Evan Green's book, "A Bootfull of Right Arms" About 1/3 of the way through the book you will again find the correct answer. dance

    Considering a recent purchase of yours, you have an extra reason or two to read the excellent story in that book.
    Oooh I luv it when you talk dirty.... muck and mud I mean blush

    One day I'll post the finished story of Jim Reddiex's drive from Perth to Brisbane in a car straight off the wharf from France, with nil, zip, zero preparation.

    extract from intro written in the mid 70's
    Australia’s immense distances have developed a tradition of city-to-city dashes, which has become part of the Australian folklore.

    One of the more recent involved a 1970 Citroen DS21 with fuel injected engine driven from Perth to Brisbane, a distance of 2747 miles at an average speed of 76.2 mph. This is the story of that drive and the continuing history of the car that did it.


    Cheers
    Chris
    74 D(very Special) >>Rejuvenation Thread<<
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    "Déesse" Roland Barthes, 'Mythologies', 1957

    The Déesse has all the characteristics of one of those objects fallen from another universe that fed the mania for novelty in the eighteenth century and a similar mania expressed by modern science fiction: the Déesse is first and foremost the new Nautilus.

    (Umberto Eco [Ed], The History of Beauty, Rizzoli, NY, 2004)

  14. #14
    Gone Fishin' Ray Bell's Avatar
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    Now that was after the introduction of an outright speed limit of 60mph in WA... and Queensland had an outright limit then too... he must have really planted his boot across South Australia and New South Wales.

    And for my money, Jim's story of the day he ran out of petrol south of Tamanrasset is the best one! I don't think it's in a book, but it should be...

    As for A Boot Full of Right Arms, I cannot speak too highly of that as a bit of reading matter. Gripping stuff, cannot be put down once you begin reading.

    <img src="http://www.austarmetro.com.au/~raybell/bootful.JPG" alt=" - " />

  15. #15
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    I believe the London Sydney marathon to be run next year will be accepting entries from new hatcback style cars, Golf, Astra, Peugeot etc as well as the Classic Cars that ran in 1993 and 2000.
    Far more relevant than the WRC set up.

    Graham Wallis

  16. #16
    1000+ Posts Rod Hagen's Avatar
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    Its a difficult choice.

    A DS would be the most comfortable, but it would be less chuckable if they ever get out into really windy rough stuff. Still, pretty hard to beat in other respects.

    A 404 wagon or early 504 wagon is as tough as nails and would be the most likely vehicle to get you to the end of the course.

    A 404 sedan (an injected one would be nice!) would be the best choice on twisty rough stuff. Like I've said elsewhere, they know how to dance.

    But, for me, there would great appeal in doing it in a 203 or 403. They somehow belong in these sorts of situations.

    How would they go against other vehicles? If the conditions were tough enough any one of the above would eat just about any non French competition from that era.

    Cheers

    Rod

    <small>[ 03 September 2003, 09:56 AM: Message edited by: Rod Hagen ]</small>
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  17. #17
    Gone Fishin' Ray Bell's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Rod Hagen
    <strong>.....A 404 sedan .....Like I've said elsewhere, they know how to dance.
    Absolutely! I'm just getting such pleasure out of reacquainting myself with this model, a great car to drive!

    But, for me, there would great appeal in doing it in a 203 or 403. They somehow belong in these sorts of situations.
    A 203 would be lovely... they relish tough going... and not uncomfortable either...

    How would they go against other vehicles? If the conditions were tough enough any one of the above would eat just about any non French competition from that era.
    Especially if you kit the 404 with a bit of extra grunt... what a goer they can be! And even the 203 with a moderately warm 403 engine and later model brakes (all simple bolt on gear...) would make a mockery of a lot of much more modern machinery.

  18. #18
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    GRAHAM WALLIS:
    I believe the London Sydney marathon to be run next year will be accepting entries from new hatcback style cars, Golf, Astra, Peugeot etc as well as the Classic Cars that ran in 1993 and 2000.
    Far more relevant than the WRC set up.
    Absolutely. Although it's not as bad as F1, really how much meaningful similarity is there between a WRC car and its road going equivalent?

    I'd love to see a road going version tough it out and having read an article today, I think it's quite possible. Ford uses the Volvo S60 AWD as its recon car, complete with standard engine, stereo and aircon - all operational They had to replace the ageing Escort Cosworths, but there was no Ford equivalent.

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  19. #19
    Fellow Frogger! Jack Z's Avatar
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    Dearest Craig and Chris.....

    I don't know how many Variety Club Bashes you've done but I've done three.. the most recent three weeks ago...!!!

    I have no doubt that in 1970 a DS that came off the boat brand new would have been a great car to do a 6000klm bash in but as much as I love Citroens I'd be stuffed if I'd take a THIRTY THREE YEAR OLD DS on a Bash and as for a 1050cc 33 year old GS with luggage, parts, fuel, water, two people on board etc etc you can't be serious...!!

    You can talk all you like about marathons in fact a Hillman Hunter won the '69 - 70 London to Sydney ahead of GT Falcons and Monaros and I have one of them as well that is currently being restored, and I'd rather take that before a DS or GS!

    P504 definitely... R16 I'd consider it... but it would have to be a very very well prepared DS to do a bash in and even then look at what it would cost you to get it to bash specs....

    It costs $15 - 20K to get a HR Holden or VE Valiant Properly prepared (plus the cost of the car) so a DS would have to set you back $30k, I know the guys that drive the 280SE Merc who have done SEVEN bashes in it have spent over $35k on theirs.

    The only way I'd consider a DS as a bash car would be on a car trailer on the back of a Chev Impala, Dodge Pheonix of Ford Fairlane!

    If anyone wants to prove me wrong then I'd be happy to enter one in next years bash in lieu of the HR (that will be on Bash #7) if someone can find me one for $2k and that doesn't need more than $13k to get it bash ready which is what it will cost to rebuld the HR for next year....

    Oh and then find me a service station between Sydney and Perth via Camerons Corner that stocks LHM or Flow Diverters!!!!

    Jack
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  20. #20
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Gee's Guys,

    lay off the old D's. My old ID19 would be the ideal bash car. Fragile my arse <img src="http://www.steelheader.net/photopost/data/510/893Buttkick-thumb.gif" alt=" - " />

    The drivetrain and suspension under my old '63 ID19 would do a Mack truck justice !! It'd be the ideal bash car ... Oneday ....
    I'd be bloody stunned if you managed to break it just 'cos the road was a little rough <img src="http://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/images/smilies/EVILLE.gif" alt=" - " />

    seeya,
    Shane L.
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  21. #21
    1000+ Posts Bruce H's Avatar
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    I have a friend who has just completed his fourth or fifth Variety Club Bash (maybe more, I've lost count) in an early D (63ID I think). Car hasn't broken up yet AFAIK. Proof is in the pudding mallet
    Bruce H

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    Contact for the Australian Citroen GS GSA and Birotor Register http://australiancitroengsgsaandbiro...com/index.html

  22. #22
    1000+ Posts Rod Hagen's Avatar
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    Jack Z:
    You can talk all you like about marathons in fact a Hillman Hunter won the '69 - 70 London to Sydney ahead of GT Falcons and Monaros
    I presume you mean the 1968 London to Sydney, Jack. There wasn't one in 1970 (they went to Mexico that year).

    Yes, Andrew Cowan won in a Hillman Hunter but you forgot to mention how and why!

    Bianchi was so far in front in the DS when they reached Nowra (which is a fair way from London) that Citroen had already taken out full page ads celebrating the victory.

    Then came the head-on collision with a mini on a supposedly "closed" section of road! Bianchi nearly died.

    Paddy Hopkirk, in a BMC 1800, would have beaten Cowan, of course if he hadn't stopped to try and help Bianchi, but there is no way he would have caught the DS if it hadn't been for the smash.

    The Falcons did alright, waddling in a bit after the Hunter and the 1800, but the first Holden didn't come in until 12th place. It was beaten by the number 2 DS (which came in 9th) and even (dare I say it Justin!) a Volvo 144 that came in 11th.

    A Porsche came in 4th.

    But everyone, even the hardened Brit car fans and drivers, gave this one as a moral victory to Bianchi and the DS!

    see <a href="http://users.skynet.be/sky38711/allfiles/garfiles/maraton.htm" target="_blank">http://users.skynet.be/sky38711/allfiles/garfiles/maraton.htm</a> and <a href="http://marathon68.homestead.com/" target="_blank">http://marathon68.homestead.com/</a> if you want to learn a bit more about this race.

    Cheers

    Rod
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  23. #23
    nJm
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    I've never entered into an actual event, although I've had plenty of fun venturing off the roads in my 505. Justin mentioned the road to Woods Point. Now that was an experience! Out of a procession of 2 505s, a 307, a new Commodore Berlina (with trac control), a Camry and an old rwd Celica, only the pugs and the holden made it into the town. The 505 just felt so at home. You could just cruise over all the corrugations and massive potholes (meanwhile watching Justin in his brand new 307 darting around them), only feeling the worst. And naturally having RWD meant you could have a little bit of fun while you were at it wink . I have never driven a pug older than my own, but I can only imagine they would be as good, if not better. That trip probably added 5 years worth of groans and squeeks from the interior, but it was worth it.

    So how does a early 505 (soft suspension, not gti etc) compare with a 504 or 404? I understand the 504 is basically the same thing, only with less electronics or bits of interior to fall off. Surely the semi-trailing arms design allows for better wheel travel, and therefore better capabilities on rough tracks than the live rear axle on the 404?

    I've been completely off roading in my car too, but quickly got scared when I grazed and dented the sump on a large rock. Up until that point though it was doing as well as many softroaders would (or possibly better!).
    Nick
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    "All of its cars from the 1.1 litre 205 through the ugly duckling 309 to the 2.2 litre 505 GTi had a rightness and a righteousness about them that turned every humdrum drive into a journey. Someone, I once wrote, in the bowels of Peugeot understands handling and how a chassis should feel." - Jeremy Clarkson

  24. #24
    1000+ Posts Rod Hagen's Avatar
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    nJm:
    Surely the semi-trailing arms design allows for better wheel travel, and therefore better capabilities on rough tracks than the live rear axle on the 404?.
    When you get a chance, Nick, watch someone jack up the back of a 403 or 404 using the body jack. The possible wheel travel is huge (significantly greater than a 504 I would think) and the springs are variably tempered to change the extent of resitance as you push towards their limits.

    The ground clearnace is also significantly greater than a 504 from memory (around 71/4 inches). They are very, very capable on dirt roads. That said, I suspect you could push a 504 faster on most corrugated roads, but the 403 and 404 both offer fantastic "feel". The essence of fast driving in these sorts of situations involves being almost permanently "on the edge". The feedback you got in the big solid axle Peugeots was unbeatable.

    Cheers

    Rod
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  25. #25
    Gone Fishin' Ray Bell's Avatar
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    Nobody's mentioned that there was very little under that Hunter that resembled normal Hunter bits!

    It had some tough components underneath, and Cowan was a master at looking after the car while driving fast.

    I don't think it's true that Hopkirk lost so much time helping Bianchi that Cowan was able to pass him, as that would have been allowed for, but it is true that Bianchi was well in front and had the event shot to bits. So much so that he let Ogier drive the fateful stretch...

    But it's worth noting that the fastest car across Australia was Sobislaw Zasada's Porsche, loaded down as it was with neck to knees roo bars!

    And again, I'll agree with Rod, the lightweight, lithe, get-the-message-smartly-to-the-driver 404s would be the best choice. Even on the edge, they let you haul them back onto the straight and narrow!

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