Joolz's Red One
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Author:  Joolz [ February 22nd, 2009, 12:48 am ]
Post subject:  Joolz's Red One

I thought I'd start a thread here, not because I feel the need to 'blog', or because I think you need to see another red spesh, but to give me somewhere to ask opinions, both technical and artistic when I'm thinking of modifying something, and then post some pics if it goes right, or just have a rant when it won't work.

Probably should start with a pic of the car, here you go, it looks like this, but not usually this clean. It's actually embarrassingly high at the moment, but I've been using it regularly and got board of scraping the bottom on the drive.

I bought it in August '04, I think, and it was pretty standard at the time apart from some stainless bumpers. It wasn't long before it got lowered, followed by modifying the front arms as well as a side exit exhaust and mountney steering wheel.
Although I think 2CVs are brilliant in their simplicity, I can't help feeling the need to add things to mine, like intermittent wipers for example. While I'm sure it's possible to buy a kit to install them with switches and relay all included, that's not how I roll! I know some people are happy with a dash full of aftermarket switches, but not me, and why buy new when you can get a 'kit' out of almost any scrap car built in the last 25 years?
I drove a renault in the past and liked the switch layout, everything's on two stalks, nice and tidy. The thought process went like this, If I'm going to use the wiper stalk then I might as well use the combined lights/indicators stalk as well. And then I can use the steering column trim that screws on to them. And the ignition switch that fits in the hole in the trim, which will also give me an accessory position, so I can switch the radio on without burning out the coil, bonus. But the steering lock won't work unless I use the whole renault column....

So, I fitted the top half of a renault steering column welded to the bottom half of the 2CV one and after a bit of head scratching over some haynes manuals everything now works from the renault switch gear (apart from the electric squirter which I still haven't got around to fitting).

Recently the crossbox, which had been doing it's job just fine since I bought the car, had a coming together with the steel gate bracket on somebody's drive. It pulled the crossbox off the front pipe and made for a slightly noisy drive home. A couple of weeks of leaky lash-up latter it was time to fix it.
The crossbox is not pretty and the chassis crossmember ain't much better, (sorry pics aren't great I've only got a phone camera)


The under side of the box is all shapes, some of the swanneck flange is missing, one of the brackets has cracked off, there are holes in the sides just above the seem and a massive dent in the far pipe where it hit the crossmember. thats why I didn't bother fixing it.

And I've not known this before :shock: bugger.


I bought a new box from the local factors, for £40 I gambled on the quality. Its made in italy by ZARA.... whoooooooooooooo. It's been in someone's stores a long time it was covered in dust and scratches. I put it on for a trial fit and apart from being for a LHD(the clutch cable bracket's on the wrong side) it was actually quite good. I couldn't help noticing at this point just how close the gearbox and crossmember were and how low the crossbox sat.


The gearbox mount is a little saggy but not too bad. Well only one way to raise the gearbox;


extended mounting, made out of the best of my spares (yes still cracked I know) it's 15mm higher than standard and fits without effecting the gearchange. The shorter of the two handbrake cables is a little tight but should be ok, if not it can always be replaced with a spare long one.

quick post it before I lose it, tbc

Author:  Joolz [ February 22nd, 2009, 1:32 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Joolz's Red One

Well that gave me a bit more ground clearance but still not enough, so it was crossbox on the bench and fire up the grinder. Now anybody who knows me will tell you that this isn't like me, I don't do buying new parts but the only crossbox I could find in the spares shed was little better than the one that came off, and although it seems a shame to cut up a brand new box, it also didn't seem worth the effort modifying a box with very little life left in it.

While the box had been on for it's test fit, I'd marked where I thought it needed cutting, so it ended up at the right angle/height.


The baffles weren't welded in so came out quite easily before being chopped about rewelded and put back in. Based on other peoples experience I think leaving the baffles out altogether might be too loud so this was a compromise. The bits still on the bench are left over. (there was some thought went into this, it wasn't just cutting bits out randomly!)


I flattened out the bit I cut off and welded it back over the hole, followed by a bit of bush on aluminium paint, the only stuff I could find in the shed that claimed to be vaguely heat resistant. Hopefully I'll have all the fun of fitting it tomorrow.

Author:  Russell [ February 22nd, 2009, 9:24 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Joolz's Red One

Hey, looking good Joolz. that crossbox is nothing like the one I cut up, mine just had a single plate across the middle with a hole in it, I've not cut up that many so I don't know which is more common though. Looking forward to the finished pictures!

Author:  Joolz [ February 22nd, 2009, 11:57 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Joolz's Red One

Not got a lot done today, I got roped into doing some tree surgery for the parents for most of the day.
I sorted the chassis crossmember with the aid of a couple of large hammers and the stick welder, It's not pretty but MOT man can't complain.
And the crossbox is now on, but still a bit leaky around the joints.

Author:  Joolz [ February 25th, 2009, 1:23 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Joolz's Red One

Got the joints sealed with help from a bit of fire gum held in place with a strip of rag. (tear of a strip of cotton rag about 1" wide and 6" long, smear a line of fire gum up the middle and wrap around the joint, clamp over the top).

A couple of crappy pics,
crossbox trail fit, ... C00144.jpg
crossbox final fit, ... fitted.jpg

It's a lot higher than it was, but perhaps still could have gone higher

The noise is pretty good, I don't think it's much louder than standard, hard to tell, the old one had been leaking so long I'd got used to it, the new one sounds really smooth by comparison maybe a bit more bass.

Before I fitted it I'd poured some oil into it and swilled it around, in the hope it might last longer. The first couple of miles were a bit smokey :lol:

Author:  Joolz [ March 8th, 2009, 1:21 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Joolz's Red One

Been tracing some noises. There's an annoying rattle in the handbrake, turns out it's touching the exhaust. I hadn't spotted it before because it's only when the handbrake is off, so I might have to put a spacer under the mounting to raise it up to match the gearbox.

Traced another noise to the alternator, with the belt off I could hardly turn it over. I've stripped it down and changed the front bearing which was almost completely seized, quite glad it didn't give me any hassle on last weekend's trek to London and back (500 miles).


Author:  Russell [ March 8th, 2009, 9:20 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Joolz's Red One

Hey Joolz, do you fancy writing summat for the tech section about changing the bearings in the alternator? its something people usually just bin when it's knackered, so it'd be useful to understand a bit more about it.

Author:  wal [ March 8th, 2009, 10:02 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Joolz's Red One

mornin Russ yer up an about early,if you,ve nowt to do got a wall that needs building today or an engine rebuild,the choice is yours,I'll put the tea and bacon on.

Wal in wales

Author:  Russell [ March 8th, 2009, 10:13 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Joolz's Red One

Sorry Wal, the cheese and kisses has a list as long as your arm of tasks for me to do, while she sits on a sun lounger drinking pina coladas...

Author:  wal [ March 8th, 2009, 10:20 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Joolz's Red One

bullocks to you then,and I put an extra egg in for you(free range an all!)promise no B&Q or other palaces of hell

sure you don't want to do a spot of dry stone walling?



never knowingly underdrunk

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