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About UKCivic

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    41-45...Midlife crisis!
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  1. UKCivic

    B&Q bargain Torq sockets

    Never thought I'd use the words 'B&Q' and 'bargain' in the same sentence but I've just been in my local store and their own brand Torq sockets seem very good value (just the sockets not the ratchets). I know they probably wont last as long as Snap On or Britool sockets but they're okay for occasional use or filling in the missing gaps in your set - I've lost count of how many 13mm's I've lost. As an example 13mm 3/8" socket - 67p, and the other end of the scale a large 32mm 1/2" deep socket (driveshaft hub nut etc) for £1.67. The cheapest 32mm on ebay by the time you pay for the postage is around £4.50. And I couldn't resist the 8 piece 3/8" deep socket set sizes 10-19mm for £5.58. Best to go to a store and see for yourself. They're all there on their website - but it's truly awful, I'll be amazed if anybody has ever bought anything from it. The two main bits of information you need when buying sockets are the ratchet connector size - ie 1/4", 3/8", 1/2" and the size of the bolt or nut you'll be using it on such as 13mm. But their website gives the external dimensions and even they don't make any sense - the aforementioned 3/8" 13mm socket is listed as H (45mm) and L (90mm). And all have the same descriptive text which either - 'This chrome vanadium (part number) deep socket from Torq is ideal for use on suitable for metal' or 'This chrome vanadium steel (part number) socket from Torq is ideal for use on metal, and comes with a high torque, making it easier to twist and tighten, but with the same level of performance.' ???? Putting aside the appalling grammar the information given is useless. All it needs to say is for example '3/8" 13mm socket suitable for tightening or loosening nuts and bolts'. And don't get me started on 'ideal for use on suitable for metal'
  2. UKCivic

    Fuel prices!

    Just filled up at 113.9/litre - good news that the stuffs come down to a more reasonable price but I can't help thinking that any moment the Government is going to use the opportunity to whack some more tax on, as if 61% isn't already enough!
  3. I've decided to scrap my MA9 VTEC-E after miserably failing its MOT on corroded brake lines – when I got the car back they were leaking as were the fuel line and return – I worked out that they'd been hit by the testers rust detection hammer. TBH they were very corroded anyway so probably better found out there than on the road. The clincher was emissions – slight puff of blue smoke when revved meant they couldn't test it. Either valve stem seals or piston rings most likely, I had noticed it using a bit more oil than usual but no loss of performance but it has passed 200K. I had been expecting to do some work for the MOT, I knew there was some rust starting under the plastic sill covers and I expected to have to do the rear suspension bushes – I could easily do them, but as I need a car as a daily driver I can't be doing an engine rebuild and replacing all of the fluid lines. Add to that the cosmetic issues such as two rusty doors, rusty bonnet, rusty rear arches, rust around the windscreen aperture from a replacement years ago, the old girl was starting to look very tatty. I'm in love with the VTEC-E engine offering reasonable performance, excellent economy (45/50mpg) and cheap road tax and my ideal vehicle would be a VTEC-E Aerodeck. I'd like to be able to get one of the many good VTI Aerodeck's that have been stripped for their engines and swap my mechanics into though I think with a different engine it may require an engineers report before going back on the road. I think my best option is to try and track down a 1.5 Aerodeck and see if I can 'economize' it. What I'd like to ask is what do I need to keep from my MA9 to enable me to do such a conversion in the future – ECU, exhaust manifold, cylinder head or complete engine and gearbox? I'll be stripping her down this weekend as I don't want to exhaust my storage favour. Any comments or ideas welcome.
  4. UKCivic

    Civic MA9 1.5 VTEC-E or 1.5 Aerodeck wanted urgently

    Now I'm gutted I didn't bid on the 1 owner 56K MA9 that was on ebay a couple of weeks ago, it was in Cheshire so a bit of a trip but it only made £161 - of course at the time I didn't need a car, now I'd happily give three or four times that amount.
  5. Civic MA9 1.5 VTEC-E or 1.5 Aerodeck urgently wanted preferably in the South East as I'm based in Kent so it's a bit impractical getting to Scotland or Cornwall. Any colour, low mileage desirable, oh....and I haven't got a massive budget as I've spent far too much on keeping my last one going!
  6. Hi Guys, I bought on Ebay a standard exhaust back box for my 1.5 VTEC-E MA9 as the old one was starting to blow. I'm a welder so can repair and modify but for the price it seemed a cheap fix. The original system was made by 'Walker' and has a 48mm outside diameter (1 7/8â€) pipe into and from the silencer. The Ebay one is only 41mm (1 5/8â€) and looks very small. When I placed the tailpipes together for comparison I could slide the Ebay pipe inside the Walker one and there's still a couple of mm gap. The back box will fit but it seems to me that I'd be restricting the exhaust as the rest of the system is the larger size and it's a ¼†step down in pipe diameter. I wondered if I'd been supplied with a 1.4 rather than 1.5 exhaust so I contacted the vendor and the reply I got was 'the pipe bore size does not effect any running of the car at all as the restriction of the exhaust for back pressure for the running of the engine management is in the silencer itself the bore size does not restrict the exhaust flow to the silencer at all' I'd welcome your thoughts on this before I respond to the vendor, thanks in advance...
  7. UKCivic


    Here are two solutions to the 'Arabian tent' headlining problem that affects our Civics when the glue and foam deteriorate, replacement with a better example or retrimming your existing one, either with a standard look or custom material. (Burberry tartans probably a bit 90's now but if moneys no object and you really want to go crazy look on Youtube for 'Cash Cab' or Google image search 'Limo Lighting') Headling Removal and Installation It's fairly straightforward to change the headlining. Firstly either remove your seat headrests or even better lay your seats down completely flat to give yourself as much room as possible for when it comes to removing and installing. Remove the grab handles, sunvisors and interior light, unclip the plastics from the A, B & C pillars, pull down the tops of the door rubbers, there are 2 buttons and a plastic turnscrew in the middle of the headlining that need to come out (a trim fork is the ideal tool for removing them) and if your car has a sunroof you'll need to pull off the finisher that goes around the edge. The headlining should then just fall down and can be removed through the rear hatch. If installing a better headlining from another vehicle then, in finest Haynes manual style, replacement is the reverse of removal. A tip here is to either make sure you've got very clean hands or put on a fresh pair of latex gloves so you don't get any dirty marks on it. Don't worry too much if it does bend or crease slightly, when it's fully up you'll barely notice anything. Don't make the same mistake as I have done previously in spotting a good condition one in an MGZS/Rover 45 and only finding when installed that the sunroof aperture is slightly wider than the Honda one and the 2 buttons are in a different place. Perhaps the Honda era Rover 400 may be the same – take measurements. The sunroof model headlinings are moulded around the aperture so I don't know if a non sunroof headlining could be cut to give the same satisfactory result. Headling Material Replacement If you plan to retrim your existing headling you'll need to remove the original material and any backing from the board with a scraper. I recommend you source a foam backed material as per the original from a proper car upholsterers or similar supplier. I did a Volvo estate a few years ago, they suffer the same problem, and was able to find a perfect match. When buying material it will probably come in the standard widths of either 1.5 or 2 metres. Allow a reasonable overhang on the length as it will be easier to handle while glueing on and there's nothing worse than starting at one end and then finding the other end is an inch too short – you won't be able to peel it off and have another try without ruining it so be generous! For a light foam backed material a good quality aerosol adhesive is probably most suitable - buy the strongest you can find - you don't want to have to do the job twice by using the cheapest stuff. You'll need at least a couple of cans for a headlining, maybe three as you don't wan't to run out halfway through. If using a heavier trim carpet material – the sort of thing you find in minibuses and motorhomes, then brush on contact adhesive may be better. Check with your material supplier what he recommends as some glues can react badly with the foam backing and melt it (try a small area or offcut first if unsure). PLEASE be careful when using glue and before starting check for all sources of ignition, naked flames, and obviously smoking is a complete No-No. Have a fire extinguisher to hand in case of anything unexpected - I have seen a length a glued carpet catch fire and its terrifying! Do your glueing in a well ventilated space, ideally on a fairly cool day - if it's a hot or breezy day the glue will have dried at the furthest edges before you reach them. Always follow the instructions but most glues you apply to both surfaces, allow some time for them to go from being wet to tacky, so you can touch it with you fingers and it grabs but not completely dry, and then put the surfaces together. Spray glue tends to have a very short tack time - assuming you haven't completely drenched it! An assistant is very useful at this stage to help with laying the material on the board. It may help you to mark a centre line along the length the board. If you have an assistant the easiest way to lay the material on the board is with a person at each end of the length flip it over so the glue side is facing down then bring the corners together so that the centre fold hangs at the bottom (like folding a double bedsheet in half to form a single) then manouvre over the board and lay the centre fold on the centre line of the board. Then starting in the middle push the material onto the board using a brushing action, rather like laying a bed. IMPORTANT - With a foam backed material you need to gently apply pressure - if you push too hard the fabric outer will adhere directly to the board and you will not have the nice cushioned effect. Foam backed headlining material is very flexible and easy to form around contours and curves without creasing. I prefer having an assistant to help with laying the material on the board but if you're on your own there's nothing wrong with starting at one end and working to the other, just be certain you're not going off at an angle – with both methods the important thing is to be sure that the material isn't accidentally sticking to the board further along where you don't want it to. And finally when cutting off the excess, using a Stanley knife remember to keep your fingers out of harm's way and make sure you have a fresh sharp blade as a blunt one will snag and may ruin all your hard work.
  8. Hi Guys, I don't feel this question warrants going in the technical section as its very general. I've just refurbished a pair of MG ZS 180 front calipers that I will fit with new discs to my MA9. I can't decide what colour to paint them though so am after your opinions. My car is silver by the way. My thoughts are: Silver or Black – looks too standard Red – A bit laddish? Yellow – NOOOOO Green – Maybe as it was the MG X-Power colour – perhaps with a white X-Power decal Navy Blue – Hmmm, subtley different, goes with the car colour, again with the X-Power decal I think I'm leaning towards Navy Blue at the moment as, rather than mods that scream look at me, I prefer subtle car mods that look like they could be factory fitted. So what do you think?