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Little blue... Clio 182 AB



  Clio 182
So a fortnight ago I brought my first Clio 182. This is the story of Little Blue.
Before I get too in-depth as to the car, a little bit about me...
I'm a freelance calibration engineer [engine tuner] - I've done lots of different roles within motorsport but my real talent is in making engine's run efficiently.
The first "fun" car I owned was a Peugeot 106 XSi which I retro-fitted a Saxo VTS 16v engine with cams and ITBs into [this was also the first car I tuned]. I still regret selling it, I've missed the FWD lunacy that I enjoyed at 18...
DSCN0486.jpg

I then moved to motorbikes, then sold them all to fund a business and since have owned [ITB high comp] and built MX5s [ITB high compression, turbo, supercharged and V8]. I went to Australia for a year of travel back in 2015 and returned to Europe mid-summer 2016, spending the bulk of the time since travelling around for work and borrowing cars locally when required.
I spend the bulk of my time tuning cars and developing ECU kits [reverse engineering the CAN bus], I work with EcuTEK, Cobb, UpRev, Syvecs, Life Racing and Motec - with the bulk of my tuning work being large turbocharged cars and competition cars.​
Until 6th October...
I'd been looking at Clios for a while and spoke with numerous sellers on the phone, I looked at a couple locally and found them either over-priced or wanting bodywork repairs that I personally don't have time/inclination for. I then found a badly advertised 182 on eBay for £1750..
The advert read:
Hello here i have for sale my Clio 182, im selling as i no longer have time to play with cars and this has been a toy to me for a long time. it has been built as a track day car but never used on a track due to buying a house and getting old. car still looks completly standard but has a lot of mods,
modifications are as follows H&N coil overs, pure performance strengthened front wishbones, pure performance solid wish bone rose joint bearings not polly bushes , pure performance solid top mounts, full miltec manifold back exhaust (standard 421 manifold), uprated exhaust maounts, port and polished head, cat cams camshafts, inlet manifold has been machined / ported, throttle body has been polished, k-tech remap and group n engine mounts fitted
the car has done 100000 miles and has had regular oil changes by me maximum 10000 miles normally every 5000, it has good tyres toyo rears dunlop fronts has about 6 months MOT
Bad points body has age related marks and the brakes could do with bleeding as they are a bit spongy.
After speaking with the seller for nearly an hour on the phone I was happy that he was genuine and I headed up to Canterbury to take a look at the car. We arrived after 5pm and I was surprised to see that it was cleaner than expected bodywork wise, the interior didn't look too bad and all the modifications that I could see were fitted [wishbones, top mounts, dampers, milltech cat back]. Sadly the car was warm when I arrived, but I knew that the seller would be returning from work in it. The car had two owners, the original and the seller who'd owned it for 8 years and taken it from a standard car to what it is now.

The brakes were spongy because "when I took the car out of the barn in spring I'd stupidly left the handbrake on, so I fitted a pair of new callipers on the back from Renault"... The Renault parts stickers are still on them...

A test drive was carried out which revealed a rev limiter somewhere north of 7200rpm, really sharp front end steering and REALLY spongy brakes...
A deal was struck. I drove home very happy.

The car has done a touch over 100,000 miles, but had a speedo head change at 12,500miles - all documented.
There is very little service history since a note in the book at 47000miles saying "all belts, cams, head, inlets".

The day after revealed some truths about the car.
  • It burns oil. A puff of blue on start up, if left idling and if you use the over-run. Valve stem oil seals. It was a touch below full when I picked it up and it's a touch above low now...
  • The car needs a good detail. The interior carpet in full daylight is shockingly stained, I'd imagine that the car has been used to transport dirty car parts at some point as there's rusty bolts and all sorts of odds & ends under the boot carpet edges. The paint isn't in bad condition generally but the plastics are all faded.
  • The spring rates are too high all-around which is most likely being used to hide cheap dampers.
  • The rear ride height needs lowering, it not only looks odd but on bumpy roads around here it can be quite un-nerving.
  • The belts need doing, the aux belt has signs of cracking already and is long overdue.
So I've got a pile of bits to fit:
  • Renault timing belt kit
  • Renault aux belt kit
  • Renault oil filter
  • HEL performance brake lines
  • ATE Type200 brake fluid [same boiling points as SuperBlue... just not blue].
  • Genuine Renault floor matt set
  • Milltech decat pipe [with genuine gasket kit]
I've also got a boot full of detailing gear from my old workshop to take to the car, I want to great a really nice OEM+ feel to the car as it'll be used mainly on the road in the UK and Europe. I'll be replacing some of the damaged pieces of trim as/when it's possible, but I want to concentrate on keeping the car presentable.
I plan to do the timing belt change over the next couple of weeks [when I can find some time] and will replace the valve stem oil seals at the same time along with timing the camshafts in correctly for their specification as it's apparent from the way it drives that the cams aren't timed quite right [the power delivery feels very much like the inlet is retarded 3/4 degrees] - I'm currently trying to chase down the CatCams timing tool, but may make my own.
I'll get the car on a dyno before I take it apart, and hopefully again afterwards to see what difference can be made.
I'm also going to lower the rear of the car and look at some softer springs all around, but I might look at replacing the dampers completely with a set from some of my contacts in the motorsport world - all depends on cost and availability really.

So here are some photo's of "Little Blue" - please excuse the lack of washing, I've got man flu.
Exterior - needs some loving, fading plastics etc...

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Slightly wonky Milltech - hard to see in this photo but the left tip needs a tweak

P1140849_zpsxakol0ix.jpg


The interior...

P1140846_zpswq71b98s.jpg

P1140845_zpsgkzfsmza.jpg

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The all important engine bay - needs some detailing and mechanical love in here too.
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Various little trim clips missing - already ordered to be replaced

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A boot full of parts and detailing gear
P1140840_zpsbndocu9d.jpg


I'll keep you all posted how it turns out!
Daniel
 
  2014 Clio 200t edc
Congrats on the purchase. I'm wanting another 182 and my budget won't stretch to another petrol blue and I'm looking at arctic blue myself. It's such a nice colour when clean.
 
  Clio 182
Looking good. M3 looks nice too :smile:
Thanks! The M3 is a car I'm involved with some development work on, it's a stripped track car with all the right bits and has a Syvecs ECU installed which runs the engine and the SMG automated manual gearbox [it's one of the development car's for the kit I put manufacture] it's in for a map tweak prior to having the VF supercharger installed over winter. Should be near 500bhp when done.

Congrats on the purchase. I'm wanting another 182 and my budget won't stretch to another petrol blue and I'm looking at arctic blue myself. It's such a nice colour when clean.
I'm looking forward to giving it a proper going over - colour wasn't something that drove the purchase but I like it more and more!

What autel you got Haha:wink:
It's an old one that I've had for ages, but I've got all the files to allow access to everything from Alfa Romeo to Volvo - it was handy when I used to see a lot of road cars and I've kept it for ages.
 
  182
Thanks! The M3 is a car I'm involved with some development work on, it's a stripped track car with all the right bits and has a Syvecs ECU installed which runs the engine and the SMG automated manual gearbox [it's one of the development car's for the kit I put manufacture] it's in for a map tweak prior to having the VF supercharger installed over winter. Should be near 500bhp when done.


I'm looking forward to giving it a proper going over - colour wasn't something that drove the purchase but I like it more and more!


It's an old one that I've had for ages, but I've got all the files to allow access to everything from Alfa Romeo to Volvo - it was handy when I used to see a lot of road cars and I've kept it for ages.
Was just wondering as was looking for a code reader thingy for work haha
 
  Clio 182
So the first big clean of the car happened in pieces over the last week.
I started on the interior with G101 on the carpet, agitated with some microfibre clothes and vax'd it out, it removed a lot of the dirtier marks in the carpet and 95% of the lighter marks found in the front footwells. I used a 20:1 dilution ratio to clean up the alcantara door inserts, using a microfibre to work it into the material and a clean one to wipe away - they came up really well baring in mind the greasy/dirty marks they had.
The boot floor carpet got some 10:1 dilution G101 along with the steam cleaner and a vax to finish... I think I'll end up replacing this for a cleaner one when one comes up second hand. I also need to work on cleaning the belts as these are the only item really letting the interior down at the minute.
I then added some OEM floor matts - I grabbed this photo today [please mind the muddy boots on the matts...]

P1140865_zps59ehjmad.jpg


I then went a bit nuts, washed the car, removed the tar, removed the fall-out, clayed all the panels, hand polished and sealed the paint. I also used the 3M headlamp kit on the headlights which transforms the front of the car, they're not 100% but a damn sight better than they were!

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The only part of the paint I'd like to get dealt with currently is a scratch on the boot and a tiny rust bubble on the OSR arch [looks like a previous arch-rub repair gone wrong]

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I've also got to get under the car and sort the alignment of the Milltek exhaust...

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This is the view when I walk to the car currently... love it.

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I also fitted the HEL braided brake lines whilst I had it on stands and bled through the brakes with ATE Typ200, I couldn't get one of the rear unions undone despite using the correct sized Snap-On brake line spanner it just turned the head - I'll get it booked in with some friends locally for them to cut the existing joint off and flare a new end on.

I've ordered up a pre-cat lambda sensor to install along with the Milltek decat, I've also decided that I'm going to do the valve stem oil seals and fit some uprated valve springs at the same time as I do the belts - this should future proof the cylinder head for any plans, the valve springs are 12 years old now and have been run with the Catcams for the last 8 years....
 
  Clio 182
So the last week has been spent assembling parts for doing the cam belt and valve stem seals, I also managed to get the new lambda sensor installed and gained a healthy 5mpg on the average mileage we do locally!
The car did gain a metallic rattle from below too this week, which turned out to be the exhaust clamp on the Milltek adapter pipework on the catalytic converter - so I jumped underneath it today and installed the Milltek decat along with an OEM gasket kit for the downpipe > cat link. The car drives remarkably better low down, no doubt due to the lack of exhaust back pressure which makes me think that the cam timing could be optimised somewhat from their current positioning...

I've just booked my ferry over to Ireland at the end of 22nd November until the end of December, so need to sort some decent tyres too - the T1Rs on the front aren't my cup of tea and the Dunlops on the rear have 2mm left...
 
  Clio 182
It's been an interesting week spent mainly procrastinating about when/where to do the cambelt change.
My usual work space when I'm here in Sussex currently has a Superformance Shelby Cobra sat waiting for it's wheels to come back from refurbishment and with the recent cold snap I'm not too happy about doing it out in the cold. To make myself feel a bit better about the car I brought some LED sidelight, interior and numberplate bulbs from eBay - I'll get some photos of it when it's dark but it really makes the front of the car feel a bit more modern by not having filament bulbs in the sidelights.

On Thursday I was called in by Abbey Motorsport to take a look at one of their client's twin-turbo Nissan 350z [which makes 650+ftlb of torque and 730bhp at the hubs...] which I finished with early, so I snuck the little clio onto their DynaPack to see just what shape she's in.
I realise on this forum that the DynaPack isn't a dyno that's used a lot, but it gives very repeatable accurate readings - it doesn't take into account ANY form of transmission loss as it bolts straight onto the hubs where the wheel would usually mount. Abbey MS have their dyno setup to only offer the true "at the hubs" figure, so it's a little unusual compared to traditional drum type dynos. In the main dyno screens I also run them auto-scaling, which makes for some funky looking torque/graphs but does help when calibrating to see small gains/changes in the calibration.

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So... the graphs:

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153.7 BHP at peak - the torque figure is the actual torque figure measured at the hub [divide by the drive ratio to achieve "flywheel torque"]

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Here you can see that the AFR is far from steady and quite on the lean side throughout - not what I was hoping to see. I'd usually want to see a NA road car run no leaner than 13.2:1 through peak torque, as you can see it barely spends any time at 13.2:1 or richer...

So I scaled the power and torque together to get the stereotypical crossing at 5252rpm graph - for some reason I managed to load the 1st run which was the lowest power, but it gives you an idea of the torque curve which is pretty linear with a nice kick up at 5000rpm

IMG_3708_zpso3yztfqb.jpg


I got a bit of time earlier free and decided that I'd quickly pop in some fresh plugs and carry out a compression check before I embark on the belt & valve stem seal change...
It wasn't good news.

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First bad sign was the state of the spark plugs, which look like they've all got wet at some point - the discolouration looks like blow by but all of the HT leads have a similar tide line around them on the outside of the rubber boot. Strange baring in mind where they sit under the inlet plenum.

IMG_3722_zpsjkugkhl4.jpg


Then I got onto the compression check...

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Cyl 1 = 175PSi
Cyl 2 = 112PSi
Cyl 3 = 170PSi
Cyl 4 = 122PSi
Looks like the lean mixture seen on the dyno and the 100,000miles have taken their toll on the bottom end.

Cheap winter run around....
 
  Clio 182
Im shocked to see 150 at the wheels tbh with low comp
The DynaPack doesn't have the wheels installed as it bolts to the hubs, so it generally will read higher than an atw figure due to the tyre loss a roller dyno sees. It's surprisingly strong for a low-comp motor.
 
  Clio 182
So a route for the car has arrived...
I'll be sourcing a replacement 172/182 engine which will have the cams from this engine installed along with a new belt and dephaser, I'll do the swap in the new year once I return from Ireland and will do my best to photograph all the good bits along the way.
In aid of future-proofing the replacement engine I've managed to source some ARP rod bolts which will be installed along with the CatCams valve springs and camshafts - all being well she'll be back to full health in time for her MOT in February.
 

Mr R.

ClioSport Club Member
  A special one.
Nice plans bud, I ran Catcams 421s with standard valve springs mate so I wouldn't bother replacing yours.

I also had a set of Supertec valves fitted as this is a weak area with these engine's.

Oh also you will need to replace the crank bolt and Renault sell a cam pulley fitting kit too (dephaser seals, nut and bolt)
 
  Clio 182
Nice plans bud, I ran Catcams 421s with standard valve springs mate so I wouldn't bother replacing yours.

I also had a set of Supertec valves fitted as this is a weak area with these engine's.

Oh also you will need to replace the crank bolt and Renault sell a cam pulley fitting kit too (dephaser seals, nut and bolt)

I've already got the valve springs, the camshaft seal kit, a water pump and various other bits including the keyed crank pulley from the Megane engine.

I'm torn about removing the head from the "new" engine when it arrives. If I do then I'll likely fit replacement valves but I'll also have to spend on head bolts, head gasket etc. It makes new valves turn into a £500+ job.
 
  Clio 182
So I decided that I'd had enough with the UKs shitty weather and headed over to Ireland for a break at the in-laws place in Co. Sligo on the west coast. The roads out here have always amazed me and I enjoy a road trip, so I packed the Clio, filled the CD multi-changer, brimmed the tank and after a buy-one-get-one-free Pizza at the local Pizza house [one for the road too] I headed off from Forest Row at 6:45pm on Monday to Holyhead to catch the 2am ferry on Tuesday morning.

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It rained. Every single mile of the journey. But, with the cruise control set at a steady 75 - 78 mph dependant on flow the journey flew by all the way up to just north of Birmingham where I decided to not listen to Google maps and actually head along the M54 and across North Wales along the A5. As I made this deviation I looked down at the trip computers averages of 67mph and 39mpg [see photo's below] and thought "that's good going for a hot hatch" - then I reached Wales.

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The remainder of the journey included a 10 hour wait [8 hour delay] at Holyhead waiting for a storm to die down, a rocky crossing to Dublin and a final jaunt across Ireland to Co. Sligo - I arrived 23 hours after setting off. The car didn't miss a beat the whole way other than demanding a top-up of oil at Holyhead. The total journey door-to-door was 458miles, including numerous stop/starts through the night at Holyhead to heat the car up [it was 3 degrees C and windy :fearful:] the car averaged 50.7mph and 35.3mpg - not to bad at all!

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I'm over here until NYE now with the car, so I gave it a good wash yesterday to show off the new Turini's I picked up before leaving, they're shod in 195 45 R16 Toyo T1Rs that I'll kill over winter before getting the wheels refurbished in Anthracite and some 205 45 R16 Michelin PS3s fitted. I think I'm going to get some 10mm spacers for the front and some 5mm ones for the rear of the car to help fill the arches a bit more, but I like the look of the Turini's.

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Front arch gap [measured from the top of the tyre's shoulder]
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Rear arch gap [again, from the top of the tyre's shoulder]
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I'm still on the look out for an engine solution come January - hopefully something suitable will come available soon! It's a solid -3c every night at the minute here with crystal clear skies during the day, hopefully it'll warm up a bit next week and I'll get the Clio out into the Ox mountains to have some fun :smilingimp:
 

NorthloopCup

ClioSport Moderator
So I decided that I'd had enough with the UKs shitty weather and headed over to Ireland for a break at the in-laws place in Co. Sligo on the west coast. The roads out here have always amazed me and I enjoy a road trip, so I packed the Clio, filled the CD multi-changer, brimmed the tank and after a buy-one-get-one-free Pizza at the local Pizza house [one for the road too] I headed off from Forest Row at 6:45pm on Monday to Holyhead to catch the 2am ferry on Tuesday morning.

IMG_3773_zpsq2erzlzu.jpg


It rained. Every single mile of the journey. But, with the cruise control set at a steady 75 - 78 mph dependant on flow the journey flew by all the way up to just north of Birmingham where I decided to not listen to Google maps and actually head along the M54 and across North Wales along the A5. As I made this deviation I looked down at the trip computers averages of 67mph and 39mpg [see photo's below] and thought "that's good going for a hot hatch" - then I reached Wales.

IMG_3777_zpswlqprjgx.jpg


IMG_3776_zpslfeggwqk.jpg


The remainder of the journey included a 10 hour wait [8 hour delay] at Holyhead waiting for a storm to die down, a rocky crossing to Dublin and a final jaunt across Ireland to Co. Sligo - I arrived 23 hours after setting off. The car didn't miss a beat the whole way other than demanding a top-up of oil at Holyhead. The total journey door-to-door was 458miles, including numerous stop/starts through the night at Holyhead to heat the car up [it was 3 degrees C and windy :fearful:] the car averaged 50.7mph and 35.3mpg - not to bad at all!

IMG_3790_zps9zr4sq56.jpg


IMG_3792_zpsdbpojyyd.jpg


IMG_3791_zpsnjwwvue4.jpg


I'm over here until NYE now with the car, so I gave it a good wash yesterday to show off the new Turini's I picked up before leaving, they're shod in 195 45 R16 Toyo T1Rs that I'll kill over winter before getting the wheels refurbished in Anthracite and some 205 45 R16 Michelin PS3s fitted. I think I'm going to get some 10mm spacers for the front and some 5mm ones for the rear of the car to help fill the arches a bit more, but I like the look of the Turini's.

IMG_3788_zps4xht7xwq.jpg


IMG_3785_zpssvxmqn0h.jpg


Front arch gap [measured from the top of the tyre's shoulder]
IMG_3787_zpsjaorfqui.jpg


Rear arch gap [again, from the top of the tyre's shoulder]
IMG_3786_zpsk8tja1sd.jpg


I'm still on the look out for an engine solution come January - hopefully something suitable will come available soon! It's a solid -3c every night at the minute here with crystal clear skies during the day, hopefully it'll warm up a bit next week and I'll get the Clio out into the Ox mountains to have some fun :smilingimp:
A mate of mine lives in in Charlestown county mayo! There's some cracking roads out that way for sure!
 
  Clio 182
So it's midway through January and I think it's time for a little update on Little blue!

As above, I spent the whole of December on the West coast of Ireland in Co. Sligo. The weather was great throughout December and myself and the misses managed to get out and about a fair bit, we explored up and around the Ox mountains, down to Galway and along many of the deserted Irish country roads in-between.

IMG_3844.JPG


The Clio didn't miss a beat - it proved to be the perfect car for over there, with decent chassis control and not too much power I couldn't imagine having more fun it something more expensive.

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Something that stood out was the reception it got, over the complete 6 week stay in Ireland I got comments such as "nice car" etc about 10 times - I've not had one from a randomer in the UK...

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But, it did highlight some issues I need to get resolved.
  • The exhaust brackets on the boot floor need replacing - the captive nuts are f**ked. The hangers are currently secure but missing a bolt on each side, I'd like to get this done before the MOT in February.
  • The engine now burns a steady 1ltr of oil every 1000miles. I've sorted a replacement from cs_dave which I collect tomorrow.
  • The brake servo & master cylinder need replacing. Since being back in the UK the creaking that was coming from the pedal when you let off the brakes has gotten worse along with the car loosing servo assistance a couple of times too - luckily it's not something that initially panicked me so hasn't caused issue yet.
So tomorrow I collect the replacement engine from cs_dave, I'll be fitting the ARP rod bolts, swapping cams and fitting the new belts & dephaser during the install. I'll likely fit a new clutch at the same time whilst it's all apart too. I'll use that opportunity to replace and bleed the brake system fully.

I'm hoping to get that all done by the end of January as I have use of a lovely workshop with Woodburning Stove in it.

I've also brought some hardware to read/write the stock ECU, I'll put together a .xdf file for it and will knock the map into shape as part of the winter work too. All being well when February arrives she'll be back in 1 piece with working brakes, not burning oil and safe to abuse for the rest of the year!
 
  Clio 182
So the story of little blue continues...

Over the last week I've had the car tucked up in the workshop replacing the engine, I sourced a sub 90k mile engine from cs_dave back in January. It all went smoothly enough baring in mind that I haven't done one of these before, the old engine was obviously pretty tired as the inlets were full of oil from the breather. With the new engine in and primed with oil it fired up to a lovely cammed idle straight away!

The engine spec now:

Swapped CatCam 428 cams from old engine to new
New OEM cambelt, pulleys and dephaser
New OEM water pump
New OEM Auxiliary belt kit including tensioner
New ARP rod bolts & sump gasket
Injectors cleaned and flow tested
New LUK 3 piece clutch kit
RS port matched inlets with fresh OEM gasket
Fresh Elf gear oil
Fresh Elf engine oil
Fresh OEM oil filter
Fresh coolant
Modified OEM catalytic converter to 2.5" output to correctly mate with Miltek system
2.5" Miltek cat-back exhaust system

After all this work I'm unsure what to do with the car though, I'm currently doing too many miles with work for the Clio to be practicable and I don't have space here to have another car sat around doing nothing. I don't want to sell it but I've got a feeling it might end up in the classifieds some time soon :weary:

On a positive note she passed the MOT today too!
 
  Clio 182
Thanks! It's been a labour of love, but certainly an enjoyable one!
I'm still not sure if I want to put it up for sale tbh... the drive back today was pretty special and they don't seem to come up very often with all the extra bits that mine has. It needs some thought I guess.
 


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