In June 2014 my old P38, a 1997 4.6 HSE that I'd spent 2.5 years putting into concourse condition caught fire. I was on my way to London with my Xantia Activa on the trailer behind me. It was heart breaking as it was the only car I’d kept for 3 years and not wanted to get rid of.
Here she is the night before we left in all her former glory:
And this is how the Xantia and I finished our journey to London:
I didn’t realise it at the time but it knocked my confidence and trust in the P38 massively. We still had 2 others at home and I could not relax or get comfy when driving them so I bought myself a Supercharged L322. My next knock came when I tried to take one of the others for MOT and ended up with the fire brigade at that when I had flames coming from the front wheel due to a seized brake caliper.
I then sold the red P38 and we kept only our Oxford Blue 4.6 HSE. The bodywork on this one lets it down but mechanically we’ve done all the work to it and it drives beautifully. The other night I stupidly forgot the trailer was on it and as the windows were all steamed up I jackknifed the trailer and caught the O/S/R door with the trailer.
I then started scouring eBay and Gumtree for an Oxford Blue door and ended up finding the DSE that was local and in Oxford Blue that didn’t drive. The listing said it was a manual so I started researching the possible faults and decided it might have been the selector pin so if it was better then I expected I’d repair it. I then rang the guy and decided that I’d buy the car however upon collection found it to be in much better condition then I expected it to be… I also looked in the window and saw an automatic gear lever in there!
The car hadn’t moved in over a year so the brakes were stuck on but thankfully the winch on the trailer had enough power in it to break them free. I winched it on and we set off for home. It was pitch dark and the car was in a place called Forth, about an hour from us. Our 4.6 P38 was running like a dream, and towing the loaded trailer beautifully. When we were passing Hillington on the M8 (about 15 minutes from home) the P38 beeped 3 times and showed “EAS Fault” on the dashboard.
Thankfully it didn’t shut down to the bump stops and we managed to complete the journey home. The next day I went out in daylight and had a look at the DSE and noticed that the suspension on the 4.6 had sagged at the rear.
The DSE turned out to be in lovely condition:
I detest the after market wheels on the car so today I made a trip to Kilcreggan which is about an hour from here to pick up a set of Comet alloys. It’s a set of 5, 4 of which are great but the 5th is a bit of a mess.
I spoke to Ashcroft Transmissions for some advice on the gearbox. The car has no drive whatsoever but when you move the gear selector there is absolutelty nothing that happens. They advised that with the car in P if it will roll then the transfer box is knackered, if it won’t and the Park break works then the gearbox is knackered.
Having carried out the tests it is indeed a gearbox fault. I’ve managed to source a 4HP22 gearbox locally for £150 so I think I’ll begin the process of swapping the gearbox.
Today I decided to have a look at the compressor on the 4.6. It was bought from Island 4x4 in 2011 but has only done about 20k in the car. It turns out that the bearings in it are knackered.
So, it looks like I need to order a compressor.
I’ve got a 4.6 breaker which has a good 4HP24 gearbox, however, I’ve decided that I’m going to buy a 4HP22 for the DSE and keep my HP24 just in case I need it for our 4.6.
I’ve been offered one locally from a 4.0 so need to check that the internals are the same and it’s not going to cause me any problems with the ECU’s etc.
Anyway, that’s the last week covered and me up to date now :)