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Conors 172 Cup track toy build..



conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
Hi everybody,

So I am back and properly in action this time. I posted last year in July about starting to do a few bits on my 172 Cup, but that never materialised. This time it's for real and I wait until I had some bits done before starting to post here. The July post contains some real "warts and all" shots of the car in it's state at the beginning of Feb.

The car currently has most of the interior stripped, bumpers and lights off...

What I want from this is: Further convert the car into a novelty "race car" with race car like features etc, without going complete competition spec. The intention is that this will be road legal and track friendly but not MSA legal, i.e. I won't be competing in it. I'm not doing any of the mods to slim down track times, but more for a coolness factor and to make it easier to work on in the future.

Why I want this: Why not!? Just for novelty, learning and also the car needs a bit of tidying up as it's a bit rough after the many track days in a previous life.

Planned work / Mods:
  • I had started to list items but it was becoming a bit long... typical refurb really.
The work so far:

(DAY 1)


I found a nice place to work, with a few other projects yet to be started :) Day 1 saw me unloading the tools and getting acquainted with my new second home :)

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During the moving process the bumper had to be removed as it had mostly fallen off anyway :LOL:

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Starting off with a few good tools but lacking in some areas.. i'll be sure to have double the amount by the end of this..


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After removing the seats, I managed to single-handedly get the half cage out. You can see in the photo where I strapped the exposed ends.. this helped with visualising the shape and kept the ends from splaying outwards. By all accounts, this is supposed to be an awful job. I'm not sure what made it so easy for me.. perhaps the fact it's only a small enough unit.

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conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
Day 2 update - the point of no return!

After my first day working on the car, my back was nearly broken. Bending down to pickup various tools was so frustrating and tiring. I picked up this Halfords Advanced tool trolley and it's a god send. £288 with trade card wasn't bad either.

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I also noticed a couple of leaks while the car was stood for the week. The left hand side is steering, which I knew was leaking.. and prompted this overhaul. Not quite sure what the second is..

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This is a documentary photo, so I can remember how the door is fixed. This pin was a pain to remove. I ended up hammering with a punch. Not ideal, but I needed to get the doors off as they were a major nuisance. One got slightly bent and I can order new ones if needed. Also will probably need the tool to re-install.

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Doors finally off.. no more opening and closing to get around..

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So this photo represents the "point of no return" for me. I ended up ripping out and breaking a few fixtures on the upper dash, as it was very stuck on the left side. I will be able to install new mount points when re-installing so not too worried.

The lower dash was also very difficult to get out. For some reason I couldn't get access to the middle area holding the radio / control. So I just hammered my way through it all. I knew it wasn't going to be re-installed anyway so wasn't bothered. One slight concern is the ducting for air. I plan on keeping the heater matrix in there to provide heat if needed. I will probably remove the directional venting and just have fixed cabin heater controlled by a "high, low, off" toggle switch.

Question: Does anybody know if the rusted brown metal bars are required for safety here.. or are they just for structural integrity of the dash? I see them removed in a lot of "race cars" but perhaps this is ok because they have full roll cages? As I don't have a full cage, must I leave the bars here?

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So I introduced a slight crack in the windscreen when removing the rear view mirror.. it was always going to happen as I didn't even use much force really. The windscreen seemed super fragile, which makes be believe the Cup screen is actually lighter. I hit it a thump for good measure later on to see it spider a bit more :shame

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Excluding the roll cage, this photo represents a whole days work. Man the interior took a lot longer than anticipated. Still the rest of dash wiring and loom to remove.

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conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
Day 3

Today I wanted to label all the wiring loom before moving forward while the connections were still fresh in my mind. I plan on breaking down the loom and removing any un-needed wires. I don't think I will replace any wiring unless warranted.

On one hand, I think I should make a completely new loom, because the car is 19 years old. On the other hand, I can just strip out the unused wiring and re-use, to save cost. Keeping in mind that the dash will be stripped and it will be much easier to get to the loom in future if problems arise. Thoughts?

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The rear bumper bolts were a real bar steward to remove. The sprung captive nuts, or whatever you call them were seized on and I couldn't get a proper grip of them. I needed to grind them off with little space so it was a little brute force. I will need to tidy up those fittings before the bumper goes back on. I imagine a new piece spot welded on and drilled should do the trick. I have never welded anything before but I plan on grabbing somebody nearby to show me through this project.

Should really have used my Dremel for this, but it was at home.. great place for it!!

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Next up were the side skirts.. these have rivets in place of screws so needed to be drilled out.. Re installing them will probably be the first time I use a riveter too.. Did I say I was doing this project to learn some things along the way? :)

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The bolts for the skirts were seized on too, and needed to be ground off. Another place for the Dremel. The bolt glowed red and melted the surrounding skirt.. Well that is sure to make some people cringe. I am sure that is also easily fixed later on too.

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ZachB

ClioSport Club Member
  182
Great stuff, must be nice to have a proper space to work and not in the street or a narrow drive!
 

ZachB

ClioSport Club Member
  182
Also Im not sure on that support bar but I know it supports the column with a couple bolts as the mk2 column brackets are made of cheese.

And those couple bolts in the arches, I didnt think they would need that much to get them off, I would of thought they would just snap if you turned them with some mole grips!
 

conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
Well yes, in hindsight you are correct. I will also need to drill out the screw also. Oh well.. this is all a learning curve.

Part of me is kind of excited about all the possible problems so I get to learn how to fix them :)
 
I see this project escalating quickly. I told myself with my clio that it would be a weekend car with good pads and tyres to take it to track days. Its now in pieces undergoing a full track car build. It seems youre going in the similar direction haha
 

conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
I see this project escalating quickly. I told myself with my clio that it would be a weekend car with good pads and tyres to take it to track days. Its now in pieces undergoing a full track car build. It seems youre going in the similar direction haha

Totally.. it's already escalated, a lot!

So in November I set about removing the steering rack for a refurb. Noticed the suspension/subframe rust... I then spent the proceeding months looking for a space.

And now we are here.... stripping the car back to single metal shell to rebuild as mint.

I need to do some planning once I get the car apart and see what I can spend money on, but I envisage about £2.5/£3k should get me over the the line with a decent not competition build.

Big expense will be new coilovers if needed, although can very easily be added later on, on my drive.

I also want to look into power management too... I read somewhere that somebody used the UCH in modified form, instead of a dedicated (expensive) PDU.
 

conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
One thing people don't seem to talk about on here is money... I once asked how much something cost and felt weird.

I think on this thread I might talk about money. Costs, budget etc. It will help give people an idea of what a build costs and where the could save / add cost.
 

Greeny.

ClioSport Club Member
  182 + 330d
One thing people don't seem to talk about on here is money... I once asked how much something cost and felt weird.

I think on this thread I might talk about money. Costs, budget etc. It will help give people an idea of what a build costs and where the could save / add cost.
I mean for the most part people know how much parts cost minus the nut and bolts builds plus they probably don’t wanna come across as billy big balls shouting about how much they spent on their old french car, it’s not a great look. I guess its all about spending money in the right areas, ive purposely upgraded parts in my car slowly over the years, one not to loose interest, two to stop being moaned at and three to save cost, for instance my wet/road wheels are still the ones I was given when I bought the car, I could replace them for something that looks nicer/abit lighter but they do the job so haven’t bothered as yet.


Over the 5 years ive owned my track car its hard to think how much its cost me tbh, not sure I want to add up the receipts and its not even an amazing build, just a generally fairly tidy track hack and it doesn’t even have a diff (yet) :( Car aside each track day costs best part of £300 including the fuel/garage/food etc, best not to think about it and just enjoy yourself and just worry when you run out of real money lol.
 

conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
I mean for the most part people know how much parts cost minus the nut and bolts builds plus they probably don’t wanna come across as billy big balls shouting about how much they spent on their old french car, it’s not a great look. I guess its all about spending money in the right areas, ive purposely upgraded parts in my car slowly over the years, one not to loose interest, two to stop being moaned at and three to save cost, for instance my wet/road wheels are still the ones I was given when I bought the car, I could replace them for something that looks nicer/abit lighter but they do the job so haven’t bothered as yet.


Over the 5 years ive owned my track car its hard to think how much its cost me tbh, not sure I want to add up the receipts and its not even an amazing build, just a generally fairly tidy track hack and it doesn’t even have a diff (yet) :( Car aside each track day costs best part of £300 including the fuel/garage/food etc, best not to think about it and just enjoy yourself and just worry when you run out of real money lol.

I couldn't agree more.. My build will be no where near the top end. Just a couple grand and a lot spent on refurbing/restoring. While people know the rough cost of bits, once you have a lot of stuff together it's anybodys guess as to the final build.

I suppose my thinking was that people will see what you get for the money on a straightforward build. Perhaps I'll just offer to ping over details privately if people are interested in cost. I just wanted to help and not overcompensate for other shortcomings lol.
 

conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
Day 3 - Rear subframe removal

Today I dropped the rear subframe. Made a bit of a mess of it really, as I got the balance of the frame wrong, so when I released it from the car it rotated around the point on the jack, as seen in the pics.

Took out this mounting bar that holds all the trim together. Will probably cut it down before putting back so as to hold the instrument cluster and dash top.

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Went about taking off the wings next, and noticed this fairly rotten looking brake servo.. Probably would have taken a while to noticed that.


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Wipers up next.. rather crudely yanked them off... I'll be able to tidy up before putting back on but if you value your wipers you should buy the correct tool imho.

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These subframe bolts were a pain, I don't quite understand the fittings they were using. They just gave way after a few ugga duggas. I muscled through most of them with the vice grips, but had to grind off the final one. I'll have to figure out how to refit them later without those crappy brackets. Curious how others refit rear subframes.

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conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
Are you using your Turini’s as axle stands??

I sure am.. I will admit it feels fairly shameful, but when the rear was on stands the didn't sit right and you could kind of rock the car so I opted for the safer option.

They were in rough enough shape anyway so will need a refurb, and actually not getting damaged from the car really..
 

RuskiWeldShit

ClioSport Club Member
  Clio 172, RS4 B7
One thing people don't seem to talk about on here is money... I once asked how much something cost and felt weird.

I think on this thread I might talk about money. Costs, budget etc. It will help give people an idea of what a build costs and where the could save / add cost.

Hahha because it’s a sure way to a depression once you start talking about money. My original budget of 8k was exceeded 3 years ago. I stoped counting after that.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
Hahha because it’s a sure way to a depression once you start talking about money. My original budget of 8k was exceeded 3 years ago. I stoped counting after that.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Yea, fair point. I actually realised I was going to stop bean counting once I did some back of envelop estimations in Excel.

Much better off to just work away on the car and spend as needed.. keep your head firmly in the sand or clouds, whichever you favour :)
 

RuskiWeldShit

ClioSport Club Member
  Clio 172, RS4 B7
Yea, fair point. I actually realised I was going to stop bean counting once I did some back of envelop estimations in Excel.

Much better off to just work away on the car and spend as needed.. keep your head firmly in the sand or clouds, whichever you favour :)

That’s exactly how all “big budget” builds start


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

ZachB

ClioSport Club Member
  182
What gets to me more is the amount of parts Ive chucked or sold only to buy them again!
 

Eddie555

ClioSport Club Member
  Q7 2018 & 172 Cup.
Hahha because it’s a sure way to a depression once you start talking about money. My original budget of 8k was exceeded 3 years ago. I stoped counting after that.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Genuine lol. You'd spent £8k on parts before you even bolted anything on it.

Sent from my SM-G977B using Tapatalk
 

conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
Alright guys..

Sorry for the radio silence here. I got a bit bogged down with a bunch of stuff and also found the stripping of the car a little monotonous and didn't think people would care for it lol. I have an album online if somebody is interested let me know.

In the meantime, here is a whirlwind update of where I am now.

In the unit I am renting.. another guy is building this temp spray booth. I'm waiting to see how it shapes out.. I may see if I can get in to spray the Clio. For colour I am thinking of Purple base, black (or bronze) wheels and yellow trim, such as calipers and a couple other bits. That colour looks great on the 911 GT3 RS .. Not sure it will be amazing on the Clio. Ultimately I don't think anything is amazing on the Clio, as deep down I really don't like the shape, but then again it does make an amazing track car - so says the internet, which is why I bought it :D

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That insulation ain't going back in.. thankfully. It became apparent after removing what was left of the sound deadening that the car will be even louder than it was before... thankfully it will be predominantly track and the odd blast around public roads. No daily'ing or anything mental like that.

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Basic :)

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Where is the grimace emoji. I plan on stripping out the un-needed bits and building a new version of what's left. I will re-use the connectors.

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Engine out :). I don't plan any mods on this. It's got 122k miles on it. I will do the famous belt and dephaser service while it's out, and after that wait for it to blow before opening it up.

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Cat litter is great..

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conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
I've built up a makeshift table where I can keep stuff up off the ground and do a few of the smaller jobs on it.

This rear beam is very much toast. It's getting media blasted along with the calipers.

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Quarters off

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That Anti Roll Bar is toast really.. It's proving awkward to get here in Ireland and postage from UK is a pain. I'll tidy this up and re-install it. It's an easy change later on. This is one of the Cup specific parts on this car. It's a bit thicker than other models.

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The rear brakes are totally rusted. These have been cleaned up in citric acid. I guess part of the reason is that there is near zero brake effort on the Cup models as there is no ABS. These discs have no noticeable lip on them and I am loathe to replace them if the same will happen again. It's about £160 for the pair as they come with bearings pre-installed.


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They came up like new. If you ignore that oxide lol.

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conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
... And the point I was waiting for for quite some time. The point of no return :)

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The body is generally in very good shape, bar a little rust here and there. Nothing to worry about though - so I am told.
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The two front jacking points took a bit of hassle from axle stands... My fault really. Some advice says that I can easily fold these back with a vice grips. I secretly want to cut these out and weld in some nice little sections that I can sit onto my axle stands. I need to investigate but something a little shaped to fit the stand and some rubber pads bolted on. I've not seen them anywhere so I am not sure who great an idea it is, but would be very practical.



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conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
I started cleaning down the underside of the chassis. No water being used.

First off was white spirits but that is oil based and doesn't dry too well so I have moved over to paint thinners. The thinners is great and is helping me remove the Schutz.. It doesn't seem to be too great up around the engine bay with all the grime. First pass will be thinners but I have purchased two gallons of brake cleaner and will give another clean with that. After some testing if it doesn't work to satisfaction, i'll use degreaser and rinse off with a spray gun - certainly no power washer.

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The underseal is generally in great condition with the exception of this part.. easily tidied up.

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conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
Alrighty then.. another update.

Great weekend. So I feel like I covered a nice bit over the weekend, and for brownie points I got to change the oil on my E class :)

TLDR; - Cleaned up the underbody, discovered a rotten section. Painted some parts. Checked alternator brushes.


Alternator / Engine. I plan on refurbing the externals of this and changing the timing belt and "dephaser" pulley. Extracting the alternator to check brush length and see if they need renewal. I don't want them to run out and see me left on the side of the road. Have you ever heard of anybody proactively renewing the brushes on their alternator? I haven't, but it's beggars belief.

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Brushes look good to me.. plenty of life left in them I think... or is there?

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Sprayed some de-rusted parts with primer on Saturday and black on Sunday. Hanging from the brake lines out of the car lol.. they are being replaced btw ;)


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I just like this picture.. My space has grown quite a bit since day 1.. bit messy this pic and I plan on tidying next day out.

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I also dismantled the rear brake compensator. It's supposed to be factory set for the Cup variants. I need to do some research on this. I don't fancy it going back in and I would like to investigate two options.

1. Removing it altogether and just installing a brake bias valve inside the car. This would serve a useful purpose in that I could crank up the rear bias for MOTs as tester often erroneously fail these cars due to lack of rear brake effort. So much so that the VOSA had to issue a bulletin for it, specifically for this model.
2. Re-install the above valve inside the car as the brake lines will be internal. Obviously omitting the spring mechanism as I believe that does nothing on the Cups anyway.
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Upon inspection of some "file footage" this is it in situ, warts and all. Looks like the lever isn't connected to anything and as such the spring wouldn't move anyway. Therefore, the bias is predetermined and can't be affected by the travel on the rear beam.. To be continued.




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conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
On Sunday I spent some time really getting into it with the underside of the body. Having recently queried how to clean up the nooks and crannies, I am delighted to announce I found the perfect tool. I had picked up a set of these Rolson Mini Brushes before for a couple quid and the nylon works really well. Please note that while these work well, a of the Rolson line up is not good at all, imo and I would not recommend them to anybody. I have also decided never to buy Rolson again.

I also found that using a can of brake cleaner or my spray bottle pressured up is good for then blasting out the agitated dirt.

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I didn't get a picture of the cleaned underbody as phone died, but I will post next time I get one.

In the mean time, please see this hole I found!!

...What hole!?


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This hole!!!

I think it has originated from the excessive jacking/support on that corner on the seams, which seems to have caused rot that crept in under the under seal. With that in mind, I will be inspecting the other corners too.

It doesn't seem that bad really and I am somewhat excited about it as it means I get to learn about that repair process. Now I will say this - It appears structural and as such I won't be doing the welding for the repair, having never welded before. I had always been thinking of adding some sill reinforcement for easy jacking/support. Given this will be a track car, it's going to get a lot more of that action than a normal daily driver.



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I have 4 of these type of stands so it stands to reason I could build something that will accept these easily. I am thinking about a piece of slightly profiled steel plate with some rubber plates fixed on. In my head it would be quite tidy.


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The other alternative is to buy some of these rally stands which should sit onto the axle stands. I feel less comfortable with that though, they will be visible from exterior also.

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conor1n

ClioSport Club Member
So this evening I started work on the rewiring. Starting with the rear loom as it's the smallest.

Baby steps..

First step is to identify all the connectors, pins and wires and then match them up in the wiring diagram I have.

Once I am comfortable with that, I will:
* Strip down any covering on the loom.
* Identify the wires I don't need and remove them
* decide on a colour scheme for the wires. I'm not going down the rainbow route.
* copy the loom by cutting out new lengths of wire and coding them to be similar to the existing loom.

Before actually cutting I will likely need to make some decisions about where I am putting the fuse boxes/ecu/etc. ECU and engine fuses are currently in the engine bay, I plan on putting them into the area that would previously have been the glovebox/dash area.

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.. And I spent a while identifying all the connectors on this loom, using a wiring diagram I got online. The diagram refers to the X65 Clio II platform, and includes stuff such as A/C and ABS, which are not in my car.. So I need to be very careful.

The reason I am using this diagram as it's easy to understand. I need to be very cautious for the dash and engine looms. I'll be sourcing another set of diagrams to cross reference and double check against.

On this loom, I think I will be using everything and not binning anything.
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