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Ricks RB182 Project thread - saved from death


ClioSport Club Member
Hi all,

I finally got my purchase home. Some of you may have seen my thread were I was struggling to get the car lifted and brought to NI. Well, I finally got a transport company here to lift it for me and I picked it up yesterday.

The car is a 2004 RB182 with both cup packs I won on ebay, 119k, 3 owners, low compression on cylinder 2, a water leak and clutch going to the floor.

First thing to do was to collect it from the transport yard. (being towed by another diamond)


I got it home and started by washing it. I has been sitting in storage since January and it was very dirty.



I set about washing with the usual 2BM after some heavy TFR was sprayed on the car, wheel arches etc


This was only a full wash, no decontamination for now. The car needs a proper detail but that will come.


Sadly someone has keyed the passenger side. Paint depth gauge suggests this whole side is still on original paint. So its a real shame. I will touch this in and flatten it until I get round to respray.


Car all washed


There is a few dents on the car, notably the bonnet and boot



Hope a PDR man can sort those.


ClioSport Club Member
Next was onto interior.The water leak seems to gather below the drivers seat. I seen it suggested on here that it could be the centre scuttle drain blocked, which would tie in with the alarm LED on solid. The siren is probably drowned.





I started by removing all the loose stuff (including part of the factory cup splitter from the boot) and then I brushed as much with the brush and pan before hoovering. The mould has attacked the carpet badly so this was only to remove as much as possible. Seat removal and full interior valet coming soon.


I then started into seeing what was wrong with the engine. I went to remove the spark plugs to look in with my borescope and compression test. Number 2 plug was loose and when I removed it, it was clear the plug was slightly beaten up and the gap was totally closed. Below is a few images from my borescope.


I initially assumed the engine had dropped a valve but as you can see all valves are in their seat. I'm not sure what happened. The compression tester will screw into every other plug hole apart from number 2. I done a compression test on number 4 just out of curiosity and it was reading over 190 psi so this was a healthy engine up to this point.

I have a 172 engine ready to go into the car anyway. So I will update as I progress with the car.

Overall I'm happy with the purchase considering I had not seen the car before buying. The car is totally original which is what I wanted. Even has the under-tray attached below. Two brand new continentals on the front, and good bridgestones on the rear so its evident the previous owner cared about the car.

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ClioSport Club Member
Fixed the clutch pedal tonight. The self adjuster was sticky and had stuck slightly open not grabbing the big toothed wheel that pulls the clutch cable. Simple fix. FYI the clutch pedal and mech can be removed without removing the full pedal box. I intend to find out what condition third gear is in before pulling the engine and box (yes this will mean abusing an already knackered engine)

Any theories as to what happened the engine? I intend to strip it when it’s out to find out the cause of failure.


ClioSport Club Member
Last night I decided to have a look at my exhaust. It was hanging down and had some corrosion.


The back boxes where not in the holes in the rubber of the hangers. I refitted them to these and cleaned the tips using autosol and some wd40 on a scotch pad.



Still not perfectly aligned. There was washers packing out the exhaust hangers. I may remove some washers on the slightly lower side. Anyhow, it looks at lot better for now.

Whilst I was in below the car I noticed the rear Caliper is leaking down the back of the inside pad. I assume this is just a case of buying a rebuild kit and replacing seals and piston?

Engine replacement will start next week. Stay tuned for that.

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ClioSport Club Member
I noticed the heater would only blow warm air. After a bit of digging I found a fix on the forum. So today I got a spare afternoon and decided to look into it. Sure enough the toothed wheel was splayed so out the cable ties came.



I also pulled back the rubber on my brake and clutch and noticed the rubber is stretched over very worn metal pedals. Replacement pedals are on the list.

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ClioSport Club Member
Thank you for not breaking it / scrapping it or making it a track car.

It’s too good to break. Apart from the engine which will be sorted, it’s exactly how I wanted one. Totally original. Noticed earlier, it still has the wee piece of foam between the ECU and PAS fluid bottle.

Hopefully getting the engine crane tomorrow and starting engine removal proceedings next week. Replacement engine requires timing belt and dephaser done so that’s the first thing on the list.

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ClioSport Club Member
Tonight @Tom_1990 and I started work on the replacement engine. The crank seal was leaking and the sump was leaking also. Off with the sump to remove the main bearing cap to reseal also as it was leaking from here too.




Check your oil pickup if your ever in here!


New seal in


All built up again


A spare 5 mins before calling it a night and I stared removing some pieces to get the engine out. Just airbox and disconnected breathers and sensors


Also pleased to report that third gear doesn’t crunch!

More to come as the timing belt/dephaser and cam seals are being done on the engine before it goes in.

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ClioSport Club Member
A bit of work done to the RB on Friday night and yesterday.

The replacement engine had a slight leak at the rocker cover, so we decided it was a good time to reseal it.


New cam seals fitted also


And then timed with genuine Renault kit and new dephaser


That was friday evenings work.

Saturday we started into removing the engine and box



Engine isn't the easiest got out. I had to remove the AC compressor to give a bit more room. But finally...



Split the engine and gearbox and found a fairly fresh valeo kit fitted (pedal was quite light so I knew it had a clutch)



Cleaned the gearbox as it was covered in PAS fluid.

  AAS'D RB 182
Great work on this. As said above thank god your saving this. Best colour and getting rare now. Would like to no how many are still alive.
  Ph2 172, 106 Rallye
Excellent job man, good to see another one over here. I may have to give you a shout when I need my dephaser/belts done as I don't know anyone else over here with the timing kit (well, a legit one anyway).


ClioSport Club Member
Some work done to the RB yesterday.

@Tom_1990 and I got the engine into the car and onto all its mounts. Some wiring and PAS pipes fitted also



I also replaced the O/S inner CV boot


IMG_0966 (1).JPG

The ABS ring was broken on the same shaft so I ordered 2 new ones off ebay. I didn't know at this stage that cup suspension cars had 15mm wide rings. So when the rings I bought arrived I seen they were half the width of my broken ABS ring, so onto ebay again and I bought 15mm ones. However they must of sent me the wrong rings as they are 2mm smaller internal diameter than the narrower rings I incorrectly ordered, which fit on nice as you can see. Emailed the seller and awaiting response.

Those are what I ordered, anyone experienced similar?


The genuine spark plugs I ordered arrived yesterday, but not fitted yet


Hope to get the car built and engine running this week.


ClioSport Club Member
Some more work done to the RB yesterday

Sorted my problem with the ABS ring. They had sent me the wrong rings! Fitted new ABS rings on both sides. Only one was broke but thought I'd replace both while I had the shafts out.


We fitted the new OE spark plugs, torqued them and fitted the upper inlet


Fitted radiator and AC condenser and piped them. Finished off PAS pipes also. At this point we filled and bled the coolant with genuine Renault coolant and ran the engine to operating temp with some oil I had that I wasn't using to flush the engine after the sump and rocker cover being off. Drained the oil then.


New gearbox oil was put in also. This isn't a photo I took at the time but I used fuchs titan sintofluid this time. Mainly because I already had 1.5 litres of this from a BMW box oil change I done a few years ago. The bedhead shampoo bottle is my trusty hand pump I've been using since 2013! Used this to fill the gearbox. Had to buy some new ATF for the PAS also.


After I drained the oil I changed the filter and put in my new oil. Motrio may be a bit controversial but Renault recommend it and it is technically a Renault oil since they own them. Extra supersedes super extra. Extra is now the fully synthetic oil. It is apparently made by shell. Will do for now. Genuine filter fitted.


Bought a new coolant bottle off eurocarparts


The only play in the suspension that I could feel was the track rod end on the N/S. I went to remove this and it would not come off the inner arm no matter how much I heated it and doused it in WD40. I resorted to cutting it off in order to fit the inner arm removal tool. I replaced these both with genuine parts. Note that the new track rod end does not come with a new nut!


Built the car on up then. The bolt and receptacle for the bumper on both sides at the wings were not in good shape so I ordered new ones from Renault.


How the car sits now. It is still not finished.


I drove the car briefly to make sure everything was ok. What a car! Love how the engine dominates the driving experience. Even managed to experience the 5k kick a few times. Brings such a grin to my face driving this thing!


ClioSport Club Member
  dan's cast offs.
your inner cv boot is going to catch on the corner of the block, you can cut the lug off the block if you want.


ClioSport Club Member
  dan's cast offs.
don't think you can get one from reno? not a normal fitting boot. think gkn might do one though but it's a good few years since i looked.


ClioSport Club Member
  dan's cast offs.
they are just a pull through and fold back sort of thing. it's mainly the diameter of the boot that causes the problem. what make and part number did you find?


ClioSport Club Member
  dan's cast offs.
was sure they didn't list it on it's own? could be wrong though.


ClioSport Club Member
Bit of a smaller update this week as I was occupied with other stuff so didn't get as much time at the RB as I would of liked.

To combat the CV clip problem I thought I would try a stainless steel band, which meant buying a banding tool as well.


I fitted it to the driveshaft


The clip ran about 1mm clearance to the block and the rubber boot was touching and no more, so I filed some of the block to give it room. Time will tell if it works or not. I've no photos of this.

I also ordered an OE nut for the track rod end


While I had the ECU brace out I decided to respray it satin black along with the engine hook




ECU brace is not fitted yet.

While it was drying though, I took the rear caliper off as it was leaking. Removed the seal and the piston and power hosed the caliper.


Haven't rebuilt the caliper yet. Hoping to get a lot done this week...


ClioSport Club Member
Following on from my previous update, I abandoned the caliper rebuild and bought a new caliper off ebay. It hasn't arrived yet but should be here tomorrow.

I removed the caliper carriers and wire brushed them and set them in the vice


I then painted them hammerite direct to rust silver


Calipers done too


The front bumper etc was back off the car. At this point I washed the front crossmember and slam panel. I then restored my headlights, Apple had to restore my phone on saturday which was backed up in store and the night before but sadly I lost all photos from last tuesday onwards which included some of the crossmember before and after cleaning and my headlights before, during and after. I sent some on whatsapp and these were available so here they are. .

Here is an older shot where you can see the state of the headlights before


I started with 1500 wet and removed all the the hazing with this. I then used 2500 wet and finally meguiars ultimate polish on an old orange hexlogic pad on my das 6 pro which left them like this.



Tonight I done a bit more to the car.

The car had two top mounts for MOT last november (its only done 1200 miles since then) but the passenger side top mount bearing was knackered so I decided to get an OE replacement.

Removed the strut


Replacement mount


And fitted in the car. The OE mount is much handier fitted. The nut is separate from the top part which makes it much easier to tighten. The strut is totally solid now. Here you can see I broke my ECU mount when wrestling with the ECU cover to get it removed before I removed the engine :( I will replace this.



ClioSport Club Member
Before refitting the airbox I fitted a new genuine air filter.

The filter must of been very recently replaced


The inside of the airbox was dirty


Blew this out with the airline


Fitted the new filter


And refitted my wiper arms finally!


Noticed a blow out between the cat and the centre pipe


This clamp is not tight but by the time I diagnosed this it was very warm from the engine running so I decided to leave it for tonight. Is there a gasket in here? I will tighten the clamp tomorrow night and see if that helps.

That's all for now.


ClioSport Club Member
Update - Finally on the road

Done a bit of work to the RB this week on the lead up getting it on the road.

I bought myself a Pioneer MVH-300BT from halfords on offer at £55 a few weeks ago so decided to fit this. I was wanting to stay with the standard headunit but I like having USB, bluetooth etc. I may switch back with one of the bluetooth boxes for the standard unit at some point but for now I'm liking this. I got the addtional steering wheel control lead for this also.



A few weeks ago I bought myself a Henry wash to valet the interior.


Started by cleaning the interior. So I lifted out the rear bench and was met with this.


Cleaned it all and left it like this


At this point the fact that my drivers seat wasn't going forward was pissing me off, so I decided to have a look at it. I initially thought the cable was snapped but when I removed the handle it wasn't broken. I reattached the end of the cable to the handle and screwed it back together.


I went to remove the seats and started by trying to disconnect the airbag wiring but they were being difficult. So I loosened off the seats and just lifted them and set them back to get in below them.



Left it like this



ClioSport Club Member
Gave the passenger side and the rear carpet the same treatment.


Got the seats fitted again and fitted my clio mats


Fitted a new ebay rear wiper as my original arm was broken.


I fitted a new bonnet seal at the grill also.



That was all on Thursday night. I was off work on Friday so got to the car early.

Had to go to the local post office to pick up my new caliper


Fitted it


The seal for the gearbox fill plug was perished so ordered a new one and replaced it


Later on in the afternoon I got the car insured (premium increased from £420 to £550 in the space of 2 weeks). Wasn't impressed with that but heyho.

First drive was to @Tom_1990 house, were I parked in front of his 172 cup and couldn't resist a photo.


The car had 1.5 bars of fuel that was in it when I got it. I assume it was in it since before the engine went, so probably circa November/December 2017. In an effort to drive this out of it, we went out for a drive and ended up at the dark hedges in Armoy. One of the visitor/tourist spots here in NI and stopped for a photo.

I also fitted a set of 21/21'' bosch aerotwins. You can just about see them in this photo.


My fuel light finally came on. So last night I put some super unleaded in and some fuel system cleaner.

That's us up to date. I have a misfire occasionally at 1800-2k rpm but I think this may be leads as one of them was not "snapping" to the top of the spark plug. I got a set of these with the engine and will fit these this week.

Will also being taking the original engine apart to investigate the cause of failure some time soon. My bet is on a broken ring land.
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ClioSport Club Member
  dan's cast offs.
Handbrake arm is short on the calliper, should be ok but you may find you get a fair bit of imbalance on mot. Not sure what they are like with that sort of thing over your side of the water?


ClioSport Club Member
Handbrake arm is short on the calliper, should be ok but you may find you get a fair bit of imbalance on mot. Not sure what they are like with that sort of thing over your side of the water?

Extremely fussy with that.

I noticed the handbrake is piss poor. But it’s piss poor on both sides. Tight at 4 clicks. Think I need to pump the brakes with the cable slack and then adjust up the adjuster?

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ClioSport Club Member
  dan's cast offs.
Sliders free on the other side? Also check the arm is operating the cam in the calliper, it can look like it's working but do sod all!!


ClioSport Club Member
Sliders free on the other side? Also check the arm is operating the cam in the calliper, it can look like it's working but do sod all!!

The handbrake cable was broken on the new calliper side and before i replaced that the handbrake was holding the car on the other side so I’m assuming the mechanism is still working on that side...

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ClioSport Club Member
Some work done to the RB this week.

Paid a visit to skoda and picked up this, but haven't fitted it yet.


In my previous update I mentioned an occasional misfire at 1800-2k rpm. I ordered some genuine ignition leads and this cured it.


I got these fitted on Friday afternoon and also readjusted my handbrake, which seems to be holding now @bloke. I could even torque the wheels with it on and the rear wheels off the ground.

After that I went on a long drive with @Tom_1990



Yesterday I washed the car. Started off with a strong mix of TFR on the body and below




It was very bad in here, and I have some corrosion in the fuel cap area due to this


After washing