Jump to content
casm

1983 505 XN6 recommissioning

Recommended Posts

Last weekend, we picked up a 1983 505 (XN6, manual) in Austin, Texas that had been off the road for about two-and-a-half years.  When we got it it wasn't clear if it was going to be a pile of parts or a project.  After spending a few days getting it running again, its status is officially 'project' :D

I'm starting this thread in part to seek advice with issues that the car has, but also to keep track of the state that it's in and how it progresses over time.  So, with that said, here's where things stand at present:

The car:

1983 505, XN6, manual.  Odometer says 155,400 miles but the speedo has the usual issues which mean that it could be 1,155,400 for all I know.  General condition suggests that number may be about right, however.

The good:

  • Clutch, gearbox, steering, cooling, and electrics all seem to be pretty solid.
  • Body is straight.  33 years of shopping cart dings, some clearcoat peel and minor solar oxidation, but overall it looks OK from 20 feet away.  Well, maybe 30.
  • No leaks, drips, or other haemorrhages seem to be taking place.
  • Tyres seem to have somewhere between 40% and 50% of their life left in them.  They'll do for now.

The known issues:

  • Ignition switch doesn't always engage the starter.
    • A $10 Harbor Freight starter button is attached for the times where it doesn't do what it should.  Will order new switch when I get tired of using the starter button.  Starter was having a protracted death.  Replaced it, everything's fine.
      • Ignition switch problems may have been related to the tachymetric relay; repaired relay, awaiting long-term results.  Tachymetric relay repair didn't hold.  Replaced it.
  • Speedo needle operates on a 'pick any number between...' basis; odometer and trip meter untrustworthy as a result.  Speedo cable is waiting to go in.
  • Tachometer is believed to be a liar.
    • Claims cold idle speed of 2500 RPM, down to 1250 or so RPM warm.  Engine doesn't sound anywhere near that.  Need to get inductive tachometer to verify.  Inductive tachometer confirmed that the mechanical one isn't even close to accurate below 2000 RPM; adjusted idle accordingly.  Need to replace mechanical tachometer. Vacuum leaks everywhere were contributing to this.  Going to manually reset tach needle to zero rpm when speedo cable is replaced and see what happens.
  • Factory clamps on vacuum line joins are useless after 33 years; many vacuum leaks suspected as a result.
    • Continuing to track these down; will start replacing hose clamps as I go.  Failed brake booster was main cause of leaks.  Replaced vacuum hoses; saw distinct improvement.  Suspect one or two lingering leaks (there's one known one at the ventilation distribution controls) but overall much improved.
  • Sensation of fuel delivery occasionally pulsing.
    • Car came with almost a half-tank of 2.5-year-old fuel in the tank; topped it off with no-ethanol 87-octane and Seafoam.  Still running the lousy gas out.  Have now run out all of the old gas; car currently has a tank of fresh no-ethanol 87-octane in it.
    • Got slightly better after half-assed throttle body cleaning with Seafoam via fuel evaporative line; will clean throttle body with entire ass and hope for further improvements.
    • New fuel filter en route since I have no idea if the old one is full of mud or not.  Replaced old filter; it was full of mud.  Solved fuel pulsing issues.
  • Electric radiator fan works when jumpered directly to battery or A/C is selected but does not automatically switch on when driving.
    • Suspect switch in radiator; replacement is ordered and should be here next week. Switch is installed.  However, the thermostat has also been replaced along with the coolant.  Waiting to see if I can get it warm enough for the fans to kick in.  Fan now not coming on at all; will investigate when not Winter.  Suspect resistor pack.
  • Warped brake disc at the front.
    • Just going to replace all four discs and the pads plus flush the fluid; everything looks antiquated.
    • Brakes otherwise functional, just not as good as they should be.  Much better post-booster replacement.
  • Speaking of the A/C, the compressor is seized and the belt to it has been cut and thrown away.
    • Guessing that pretty much the entire system is going to need replacement.
  • Cabin fan has exactly zero speeds.  Fuses look fine.  Windows roll down (and up) so will worry about this when it's not 100degF outside.
    • Fan works on speeds 2 and 3 with some jiggling of the switch.  Need to pull switch and clean contacts.
  • Sunroof doesn't work, but, given that it's a 505, not an unexpected development.  Avoiding this job unless being held at gunpoint to complete it.

Still waiting on basic tune-up parts to arrive next week so haven't yet pulled the plugs, distributor cap, etc. to check them - I'd rather not start pulling things apart until replacements are on hand.

Overall, it's a decent driver.  Despite the running issues, it pulls surprisingly well (yes, I know how counterintuitive that sounds) and will make a decent car for getting around in.  Looking forward to seeing where all of this ends up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Progress over the last couple of weeks:

  • The majority of the vacuum leak issues ended up being caused by a failing brake booster that took a few days to show itself.  After a debacle with receiving the wrong booster, finally got the right one fitted this morning and things are much better: idle is smoothed out and the pulsing fuel delivery is nearly nonexistent.
  • Replaced distributor cap, rotor, plug wires, and spark plugs.  Cap & rotor looked relatively new so retained them for emergency spares.  Plug wires were oil-soaked and chafed; binned them.  Spark plugs were black - not the worst I've seen, but definitely needed to go.  Running much better now.

Fuel filter and radiator fan switch are sitting here waiting to go in when time permits.  Almost all of the old fuel is out; will change oxygen sensor after first fill-up with completely clean gas and fuel filter replacement.  Air filter is ordered; need to get exhaust manifold gasket.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Casm, you are doing a great job bridging the 505 back to life, in my opinion cars that been sitting for 20-30 years seam to be in much better shape than ones for just couple, less dry rot on wires and hoses and it seems all to be down to the fluids, 30 years ago gasoline use to be battered and there was no ethanol or alcohol in it, also the coolant was made to protect the rubber parts and now to harm then it seams, nice job post some pictures.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks!  It's definitely a project, but it's a project with promise.

This was a $300 car, so the chances of it ever being fully-restored are virtually zero.  That said, it already makes a pretty decent local runner, which is really all we want from the car at this time.  Fixing the air-conditioning is definitely on the list, though.

Only going to post the one photo below for now, but the full album showing its current state can be found here.

meKn7IL.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ran a bottle of Prestone coolant system flush through the system over the course of the week.  Changed the coolant yesterday; the old stuff wasn't the worst I've seen but definitely needed to be replaced.  Refilled with Prestone 50/50 pre-mixed antifreeze.

Replaced the radiator fan switch.  No change; given what the temperature gauge is now doing since the coolant flush, it looks like the thermostat has failed open.  New thermostat and gasket are on order and should arrive in a day or two.  Will see if this has any change on the electric fan's behaviour once it's in.

Also replaced the radiator cap with a venting-type cap - the old one was suspected of having a weak spring.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yesterday was the end of a week-long battle with trying to remove the old fuel filter.

My suspicion is that whenever the fuel filter was last changed, whoever undertook that particular job decided to torque down the banjo bolts on the fuel lines to the filter itself by way of an impact wrench.  The fittings at the filter ends had been pushed inwards to the point where the washers at the bottom of the banjo bolts couldn't be seen.  A couple of quick shots with the impact wrench and the filter was finally disconnected from the lines.

This is the gas that came out of the old filter; the tub that it's in was completely clean before it was drained into it.  The filter replacement has eliminated what felt like pulsing fuel delivery while driving as well as some lift-off suddenness in engine response.

mu7Qpy1.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've seen worse but on carburetor setups, that's bad you may consider cleaning the tank pickup tube screen, and the screen on the inlet of the fuel pump.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Goce said:

I've seen worse but on carburetor setups, that's bad you may consider cleaning the tank pickup tube screen, and the screen on the inlet of the fuel pump.

Same here, but it did at least explain a few running issues.

I'll get the fuel pump screen in the next day or two, but I'm holding off on the tank pickup until it's not 100degF outside.  I figure the tank needs a cleaning anyway, so I may as well just pull it and do it; it's just not something I want to try in triple-digit temperatures.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thermostat & gasket arrived today, so replaced them in-between thunderstorms.  The car now warms up and holds temperature properly, which should help the fuel economy a bit.

Noticed that the fan clutch seems to be locked down.  I'm guessing that it failed at some point and this was the workaround for outright replacement.  Will get to it in the autumn; it'll be hot enough for the next couple of months that there's no real point in replacing it until the weather cools down.

Confirmed via stethoscope that one of the secondary air injection valves is shot; going to do all four at once since doing one means getting access to them all.  One valve is here; three more are on order.  Autozone P/N is 355050, aka GP Sorensen 779-2929.  Also have the oxygen sensor on standby for when those are done.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Replaced the clutch slave cylinder yesterday; pedal feel is definitely improved but I'm not quite sure it's at 100% yet.  Also have the clutch master cylinder sitting here waiting to go in; suspect that will cure the feel.  Not looking forward to removing the brake booster again to get access to it, so am waiting for a couple of cool days before tackling that one.

The car is still up on jackstands so haven't driven it with the new slave cylinder in place, but judging from the state of the old one it was time - although the boot was intact, there was a fair amount of rust on the face of the cylinder.  It also seems to have cured the creaking sound coming from below when the clutch was being worked, so it has that going for it, too.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Drained transmission & refilled with Valvoline 75w90 GL5 with friction modifier pre-mixed.  We'll see what it does for the shift quality; having pulled only about 1.3 litres of oil (which was way past its prime) out of there, anything has to be an improvement.

Need to finish the job tomorrow; fluid transfer pump gave up close to having the gearbox completely refilled.  Will also drain & refill diff (Valvoline 80w90, GL5, also with LSD additive pre-mixed) at that time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Post some photos, i'm interested to see where is the fill and drain plugs on a 505 diff.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Goce, this one is a photo of the picture in the owner's manual showing where the plugs are.  I didn't have my phone with me while I was working on the car so wasn't able to take any pictures while underneath it, but this shows it really well.

tC5TXmR.jpg

Other than that, diff has been drained and refilled with Valvoline 80w90 (GL5 with LSD additive), and the gearbox was topped up.  Test drive to happen later when it's not longer the hottest part of the day.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just as i thought, i have e 405 mi16x4 it uses the same diff as the 505 and 504 but for some reason peugeot have moved the fill and drain to the side next to the inner cv joint, you can see where i use a temperature sensor in the drain, god know why, is less accessible. As for the fluid when i bought my car i,ve changed all the fluids and back then total 80w90 was available, earlier this year, i refurbish the diff and had to buy new oil and could not found 80w90 in any parts store, couple suggested to use 75w90, that 80w90 is not made any more, than i thought agriculture machines must use it and i went to a tractor store ask for 80w90 and the guy ask on barrel or bottle, funny that to be buying oil from the tractor store for a french sport saloon.

DSC_0043JPG.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's been too hot and I've been too busy lately to get much accomplished with the car.  The to-install pile currently includes:

  • Rear shocks (KYB p/n KG5566)
  • Clutch master cylinder
  • Exhaust one-way valves
  • Oxygen sensor (not doing this until after the one-way valves are replaced)

Ignition switch will be ordered in the next couple of weeks along with the front struts.  Need to figure out some occasional cold starting lumpiness; suspect either another vacuum leak and/or crud in the fuel system.  Will probably have to just pull and clean the tank, which I haven't bothered to do yet.

Did manage to replace the antenna after the old one rotted out, and having more than two stations to listen to is nice.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Replaced all the vacuum lines except for the one between the rear intake manifold fitting and the delay valve (green circuit).  Need to pick up a reducer tee tomorrow and splice into the existing vacuum line attached to the fitting at the rear of the manifold.

Have noticed a definite improvement in response, however.  Not surprising given the state of most of the lines - particularly the one for distributor vacuum advance (brown circuit).  Both ends completely crumbled when touched.  Surprised they didn't do that when I was looking at them previously.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great work that's a lot of work to fit all those parts, i've replaced lots vacuum lines on many cars over the years, the trick i,ve found out is to use best quality silicone vacuum lines, I've had to replace the vacuum lines 3 times in a year, even in a storm, on a mountain pass, had to use the windscreen washer hose on a map vacuum, i know the response improvement, when the distributor vacuum line is broken, you may want to disconnect the battery terminal overnight, to restart the ECU, because ECU has enriched the mixture to compensate for the pirate air, i've found that makes big difference .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fiddled with the vacuum system some more.  With the delay valve in place and in the correct orientation (red side towards manifold), idle is lumpy to the point of occasionally wanting to stall and driveability is awful.  Removing the valve from the circuit makes the car driveable, but it wants to dip below idle on lift-off.  Putting the valve in backwards makes it driveable and seems to calm the idle down, so going to leave it like that while I track down any remaining leaks in the secondary air systems.

Also replaced the flasher relay; the old one was occasionally sticking.  Went with a CEC Industries EF33 electronic flasher.  Doesn't have the centre ground pin that the original one did, but seems to work fine and will allow fitting LED bulbs into the indicators without rapid blinking later on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First oil change completed.  Started it yesterday, learned that the oil filters I'd picked up were the wrong size, got the correct filter this morning.

Change performed at 156,000 miles exactly.  Drained old oil (had run a half-can of liquid Seafoam through it for approximately 150 miles before change), added 4 litres of Castrol GTX High-Mileage 10W40.  Replaced filter.

For reference: correct filter is the Wix 51340 (M18x1.5mm).  Had ordered Bosch 3401 filters; diameter was M20x1.5mm so they would not snug down.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Been busy for the past couple of weeks, so not much has been done.

That said, I did manage to get ahold of an inductive tachometer that actually worked.  Had a suspicion that the idle speed was way lower than it should be.  Turned out that my suspicion was correct.  Now have it set slightly over 800RPM; car is much happier coming off of the throttle and down to a stop.  I suspect that at some point it was turned extremely low to compensate for the myriad vacuum leaks that were in there previously.

The downside is that I finally got definitive proof of the vacuum advance on the distributor not doing much of anything useful, so that'll have to be taken care of as well.  At least I'm finally starting to get a clear picture of where the remaining running issues actually are.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Poked around in the distributor earlier as much as I could without actually pulling it.  Internally, it looks to be in pretty good shape - no visible rust and springs are working.  No movement on the vacuum advance when sucking on the line to the advance, though I can hear the diaphragm move a little.  Suspect it's shot; will order replacement.

Found that the #4 (nearest the front of the car) injector appeared to be leaking at the fuel line.  Pulled the injector and gave it a good cleaning with brake cleaner; also shot a bit up into the fuel line.  Judging from the rust on the union at the fuel hose it's obviously been like this for a while.  Put everything back together and will keep an eye on it; may order new injectors at some point just to have them out of the way.  No change to overall running from doing this.

Thought that the steering was getting a little heavy when pulling into or out of parking spaces over the last few days.  Checked the reservoir: empty.  Hadn't noticed any leaks the last couple of times I was under the car, but that doesn't mean that there wasn't one.  Also don't really remember what the level or condition of the power steering fluid was when we got it.  Reservoir was only down by about 6oz.; topped off to cold fill line with Lucas stop-leak and will see what happens.

Figured out that the cabin fan can be made to work on either the second or third speed with some jiggling of the fan speed lever.  Will pull switch and clean; hopefully that fixes it before Winter hits.

Also figured out (once the cabin fan was working) that the ventilation control does nothing - air is always directed to the defrost position.  Suspect vacuum issues behind the HVAC panel; will investigate when pulling cabin fan switch.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I Like your methods of systematically diagnosing everything, I have experience with two of them, the vacuum advance can get hard to move from diaphragm getting hard or pivot point grease drying up, as for the cabin fan i've seen this behaviour happen because the rotor and the brushes in the fan motor dont make good contact do to corrosion and dirt accumulation especially if the car has been sitting for a while, easiest way to cure this is to get the fan running and live it running as long as drive, this will clear the corrosion, i've seen it get really bad where i had to pull the fan out and clean it with sand piper, don't forget this older generation of cars don't have cabin filters, keep up the good work.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Goce said:

I Like your methods of systematically diagnosing everything, I have experience with two of them, the vacuum advance can get hard to move from diaphragm getting hard or pivot point grease drying up, as for the cabin fan i've seen this behaviour happen because the rotor and the brushes in the fan motor dont make good contact do to corrosion and dirt accumulation especially if the car has been sitting for a while, easiest way to cure this is to get the fan running and live it running as long as drive, this will clear the corrosion, i've seen it get really bad where i had to pull the fan out and clean it with sand piper, don't forget this older generation of cars don't have cabin filters, keep up the good work.

Thanks :) Most of this is just making notes as I find problems, working on one thing, then either fixing it or getting tired of it and moving on to something else before going back to it.  Right now I'd really like to sort out the running issues, but still need to do quite a bit to eliminate possibilities - still haven't pulled the intake boot or throttle body, so those really need to be checked next.

I did fool around with the timing a little earlier.  Timing light suggested that it had been set to the first tab on the timing cover indicator, not the first notch, so was advanced by a few degrees.  Got it more or less spot-on but don't feel a significant improvement.  I'm going to go ahead and order a replacement vacuum advance unit - as far as I can tell, everything mechanically is OK (if I raise the revs with the vacuum advance disconnected and plugged the timing mark advances smoothly, but it does the same thing with the vacuum advance connected) but when driving things still aren't quite right.  I'm hoping that the marks on the timing chain cover are in the correct spot.

Goce, good points re: the cabin fan.  I don't remember how strong they should be at each position, so since 3 works I'm just going to set it on that and drive with it on for a while.  Hopefully cleaning the switch will allow better electrical contact, which should also help.  I'm also hoping that repairing the vacuum at the HVAC controls helps with the running - switching between positions doesn't seem to have a huge effect on that, but it does lower idle slightly.

Oh, and I found that someone wired in a switch to run the auxiliary fan manually.  It's in one of the blanks in the HVAC panel and was hard to identify as a switch since it's broken.  My suspicion is that it's doing it by engaging the A/C compressor; I'll find out more when I pull that part of the dash apart.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

New tyres yesterday: fitted four Michelin Defender XTs in 195/65R15.  The Falken Ziex ZE612s that were on there previously had usable tread remaining but were utterly lethal in the wet.  Moved one Falken to the spare as the old spare had cracked sidewalls.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fresh rubber always makes a world of difference, i've run Michelin Defender on my mi16x4, not the best tires i've run, in accordance to the price not bad, one advice be aware they don't handle water good, i've hydroplane off the road with them, lasted good 40000 km aggressive driving, doing 4wd donuts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...