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Discussion Starter #1
So whilst I'm deciding what to do about my droning exhaust, I spent the day (actually I started last night on the interior), wiping off the previous owner's slime, general neglect, roadkill and general filth.
It's going in for some rust chasing on the O/S rear taillight before it escalates so I made a start.
Yesterday I cleaned the interior to within an inch of it's life. It already looked clean in most people's eye but I have a problem when it comes to detailing.
I used Meguiars APC at about 10:1 for everything. The leather seats we rancid and the gooey steering wheel now looks pretty matt. There's lots of dodgy interior trim painting going on but with some effort I managed to salvage the steering wheel buttons (they had been painted black!!)
The first pic was about halfway through.

This morning i washed car down. It was pretty dirty but not too terrible. Once that was done I hit with some clay...The amount of crap that came from the bonnet in just a few passes was unbelievable. As I worked my way around the car there was tonnes of green touch up paint coming off . I ended up wiping the car down with Isopropyl Alcohol just to get rid of it...The cloth went totally green..It looked like The Incredible Hulk's cum rag.
I also tried to capture the mass of swirls and scratches all over the bonnet. They were everywhere, included a couple of deep scratches. I think the owner had used something like Colour Magic. The cay revealed every flaw in the paint.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I was going to leave it at claying for the day but found two bottles of polish I didn't know I had..the classic combo of Meg's 105 and 205...so i dug out the D/A and some pads and hit the paint.
I also managed to remove the two scratches from the O/S wing. the first was perpendicular and ran towards the bonnet for about 50mm, the other was above the headlight and ran towards the windscreen about 100mm. It went pretty deep and i cut as far as i dare. It's all but invisible and you really have to try and find it.
I went over the entire car. There are still surface marks, but I'll hit these again when the mood takes me.
I've also got some Dr. Colour Chip in an almost identical colour from a Jeep Wrangler TJ i used to have, so I might touch in the most noticeable chips...I'd say there has been a 90% improvement in the paint.
 

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Here's a few other pic taken on my camera...They're not the best but it gives you an idea...
The Meg's left so much white, powdery residue over the entire car, it looked like Scarface had sneezed on it.
I polished the exhaust tips using Belgom Alu and wire wool (Autosol is better in my view but I couldn't find the stuff I've got in the garage)...
Finally, I used some diluted CarPro Perl on the plastic trim and black painted parts ie: wiper arms and black trim around the roof. This trim will need painting at some point because it has faded in places.
I love getting stuck in like this because not only do you start to bond a bit with the car, but you also learn a hell of a lot about it's condition and back story...feel as though you're beginning to know it.
The good news is the body work is excellent for it's year. With the exception of the lower valance, the paint appears to be factory.
The last picture shows the tail light with the rust. It's minor, but I also think that BRG is great at concealing a lot of imperfections.
The are some paint nibbles and even a portion of bare metal on the edge of the driver's door near the handle. This has been covered using touch up paint. I'm going to do something similar to protect the bodywork but try and do a better job of it.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The black headlight trim and painted Xenons aren't my bag so these may (will) be getting changed at some point... Sickeningly, I think I actually prefer chrome.:eek:
Here's a couple of pics of my beloved Jeep that I wish I'd never sold...I chucked so much at that thing but I adored it...If the Mini was this shade of green it would be 10x better imho.
 

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The above pics were taken as a work in progress and not once I'd finished but it was getting on a bit.
After these pics were taken, I waxed the car which made it look much shiner, and then for the hell of it i gave the tyres some glossy gel and polished the wheels (they're a big grotty in the above pics because they're still covered in water spots, not to mention, the glass still hadn't been cleaned). The headlight lenses are also in a right state and need sanding, polishing and clear coating..That's on the list after rust fixing and exhaust drone eliminated.
It now looks like a totally different car. I'm really pleased with how she's starting to look...Hmmm...I might get some bonnet stripes, but I bet that's fighting talk on this forum! :D If it makes you feel any better, YES I do think it would better about 10mm lower and YES, I agree, 12mm wheel spacers would look cool, and ALRIGHT THEN, tints in the back would be a nice touch...
I reckon I've polished about £1000 into it's value...;)
 

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It’s looking really good, well worth the effort!

What are you going to do to cure the rear light rust? Or will that be a body shop job?
 

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You joke about polishing value in to a car, but that’s exactly what you do. If a seller can’t be bothered to present a car at its best why would you buy it?

Good to see a car getting the TLC that makes it the best it can be.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you Keith.
Honestly, the photos don't do it justice. It's as if I've taken a wrapper from it and revealed a different car. The colour looks so much more vibrant. I'm really pleased with it. I just need to address the non resonator exhaust before I can start enjoying it properly.
 

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I think BRG with chrome looks the part, a nice classic look

the paintwork in my car is what really lets it down, one side is lovely, I don’t go to the bother of doing it myself and shove it through the IMO wash, it comes up beautiful after that but the passenger side has been dusted over at some point and the laquer is peeling, paint is blotchy and dull, the car was a barnfind and had been sat for over 2 years with that side mostly in the sun and under a tree where a branch had rubbed the paint down to the primer on the scuttle vent panel

I’d really like to get it repainted but the age (and current reliability) of the car means I won’t be bothering as it’s certainly not money I’d get back should I sell the car on
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hi Jim,

Yes you have to know when enough is enough.

I'm not even going to tell you of the amount of cash I've dumped into cars and bikes over the years... It's too easy to get drawn and just pi$$ money away. I'm fed up with doing that and vowed I'd never do it again. Also, with the best will in the world, these cars aren't particularly valuable in monetary terms so it's daft spending £000's on a respray if it exceeds the value of the vehicle, not unless it has some sort of sentimental attachment..and therein lies the trap...You can also dump so much into a car that 'just another £500' doesn't seem so bad.

My last Subaru Impreza must have had enough money wasted on it to be able to have paid for a nice extension on my house... (not to mention over £20k by the previous owner)...

I spent £4000 on a gearbox and sold the car a month later...I got rid because I knew that to get it where i truly wanted it would cost tens of thousands of pounds and the right buyer came along at the right time with the right money so I sold it. I'll never own another car that special again, but once it was gone I was washed over with relief..Relief because I didn't have to worry about storage, theft, upkeep, upgrades or anything else. It had become a chore. It taught me a valuable lesson. I can't be bothered with the stress of it anymore.

Last year I sold both of my motorbikes, my flash car and my flash van (honestly) and until a few days ago, have spent a year as a normal person..It's been great. My Mini IS NOT going to become a money pit. I will maintain it, probably do a few little bits of fettling and personalisation, but I will not be wasting money on daft upgrades or anything else..I've done it all in the past...ALL OF IT...(retrims, forged hand built engines, suspension, wheels, zorsts, turbos, intercoolers, body work, show cars blah blah)....That's not even mentioning the bikes...etc etc.

At the moment i desperately need a resonator for the Mini because i HATE the droning exhaust. If I can't rectify the problem cheaply enough I promise you now, I will enjoy the car as best I can for the moment and then in spring I will sell it. I will not be buying a new system or spending hundreds and hundreds of pounds modifying the exhaust or anything else...
 

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Fantastic work on bringing this back to it's glory, really is a fantastic colour once it's all polished up. Still need to finish getting through my paintwork, but as you have experienced the gunk coming off when I clayed it was ridiculous.

I'm with you on the headlight rings and reverting back to chrome, looks much better.

Hear what you're saying with regards to pumping loads of money into them, their value is that low now that you'll never see it all back, although the 2nd hand parts market is quite buoyant for this reason so would recover a decent % parting out. But that obviously comes with hassle, so only really worth doing if you have intentions to keep it for the long term imo.

Easily gone over what I paid for the car, and will continue to do so, but I have no intentions to sell it and fully expect to see it on Car SOS in 30 years time 😄

So, just go online & buy the standard system, sorted for sure.
Thing is the standard system is extremely expensive for what it is. When I bought my Mini they had replaced it less than a year previously and it had already rotted through, cost them c. £400. A lot of money for what turns out to be a consumable part.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for your comments.
There's a couple of things to report.. Firstly, the car is going to the exhaust fabricators in the morning to have a new ccentre section made with a resonator. The chap there says it should eliminate the drone but and reduce the noise a little bit, although it will obvioulsy remain louder than stock. that's fine by me, because it is pretty obnoxious as it is. I never thought i'd ever say this, but a few less pops and bangs would not go amiss. I pulled out of a minor road and it backfired like an old model T.
I've also removed the interior trim, including the door cards, steering wheel trim and dashboard. I've begun preparing it all for paint. The pre painted parts have been a real pain. It would have been much easier to just get replacements from the scrap yard because the previous owner made a right pigs ear of repainting the trim and it was harder to undo so,e else's work than start with a clean slate.
Anyway, it's going ok and I'll post some pics when it's done. I've also reinstated a few of the interior chrome parts, partly because the poorl painted parts were so crap.
i need a new chrome trim ring for the Nav because it's only got the speedo ring which although the same circumference, doesn't fit properly and has a large gap all the way around.
The steering wheel trims were difficult because he'd over painted the buttons but I'll bore you with that later.
Finally, I need to get some front pads and a new sensor because the light came on and I took a look and there is precisely zero pad material left.
On Monday, the car will be going in for the body work.
Once it's put back together by next week I think it'll be enormously improved aesthetically.
If all goes well with the exhaust and it's a keeper, I have several projects I'd like to do over winter..Nothing too drastic but some R56 calipers and a few other bits won't go amiss.
 

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Hopefully the new centre section makes the noise more bearable.

Look forward to seeing the pics of the interior when you’re done.

Sounds like you’re working your way towards a project thread with the bits you are planning for over winter.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
The exhaust is done and it's made the car totally liveable...Still a bit cheeky but not full on chavvy. It's a little bit naughty without being totally obnoxious.


I finished painting the interior door pulls, speaker surrounds, steering wheel trim, tubes etc yesterday and I'll bang these back on next week.

Like a plonker, when refitting the clocks this morning, and after desperately trying to not drop any screws into the dashboard, I dropped a screw into the dashboard. This can now be heard rolling around...Time to buy a magnet methinks.

Today, mood willing, I'll start painting the remaining trim pieces, namely the dashboard facias and door trims. I'll be reattaching these with silicon on the front and hot glue from the back to replace the plastic welds I had to drill out. I'm praying this works.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Oh, and I may well end up repainting the black head lamp rings in BRG for the time being. If they look good, happy days, if they don't work for me I'll wait until i see some chrome ones at the scrap yard... Im not feeling like paying £32 for the trim, plus £20 for the washer cover, per side, for some 99p bit of poxy plastic. BRG will look a million times better than the black that's on there now.
I would really like to reinstate the stock Xenons and get rid of the black ones. Failing that, over winter, I might split the headlamp open and repaint the red eyeball bit so that it matches the rest of the lamp. The red cyclops eye thing stopped working for me in the 90's.
 

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Love a BRG, but I am biased mines started rusting below the passenger side rear light though, which has lead to me drawing the line with it. 4 years in with too much spent on it already. Saving the pennies for something else now



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Love a BRG, but I am biased mines started rusting below the passenger side rear light though, which has lead to me drawing the line with it. 4 years in with too much spent on it already. Saving the pennies for something else now



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Looks too nice to suddenly give up on in my opinion, these cars are falling off the planet rapidly, sell that and it’ll get broken for parts. It’s how modern classics are born.
 
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