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Topics - Kevin Wood

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General Discussion Area / Well, it made me laugh
« on: 17 October 2007, 17:33:17 »
One day Mr. Smith, the president of a large corporation, called his vice-president, Dave, into his office and said, "We're making some cutbacks, so either Jack or Barbara will have to be laid off." Dave looked at Mr. Smith and said, "Barbara is my best worker, but Jack has a wife and three kids. I don't know whom to fire."

The next morning Dave waited for his employees to arrive. Barbara was the first to come in, so Dave said, "Barbara, I've got a problem. You see, I've got to lay you or Jack off and I don't know what to do?" Barbara replied, "You'd better jack off. I've got a headache."


General Discussion Area / How about this for a job?
« on: 08 October 2007, 14:03:50 » :o

Now, I'm pretty comfortable around things electrical but that even made my flesh creep!


General Discussion Area / Save fuel - Don't charge your mobile!
« on: 01 October 2007, 14:30:03 »
Spotted on the DVLA web site advice for "Greener Driving":

air conditioning and other on-board electrical devices (like mobile phone chargers) increase fuel consumption, so only use them when necessary

So, exactly how many MPG will my mobile phone charger lose me?



General Discussion Area / We're back...
« on: 16 September 2007, 22:19:31 »
Well, 2333 miles later the Omega has been to France, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Germany, Luxembourg & Belgium. Didn't miss a beat the whole way and no fluids topped up.

ermm. Well, other than the 84.6 gallons of petrol :o

Still, I was happy with 27.5 to the gallon considering the mountain passes, congested italian cities and the slightly elevated cruising speeds   :y It was showing 30 to the gallon before we started hitting lumpy bits of ground.

One mishap.  A biker descending a mountain pass in Italy dropped his bike in front of me after he took a corner wide and his front wheel hit gravel under braking. The bike damaged my front bumper.  :'( No-one was hurt and I was stopped at the time of the accident so I'm hoping the claim will go my way.

So, what's the news round here?


Leaving to catch a ferry at 6 AM tomorrow and smelt a distinct whiff of petrol when I parked up today.

Look under the car and there's evidence of the fuel filter leaking  >:(

It's clearly been leaking for some time judging by a bit of dirt build up and it looks like it's leaking from the filter itself, where the 2 parts of the can are crimped together, although I didn't want to pull it about too much as it's not leaking enough to cause too much of an issue and I didn't want it to open up to a gusher.

Guess I'd better dash to Halfords before they close as I'd rather have one in the toolbox.  :(


General Discussion Area / So you think you're a nutter?
« on: 02 August 2007, 15:47:56 »
Someone buy this guy a car / bike!  :o


General Discussion Area / VXR Track Day - Report
« on: 06 July 2007, 10:33:28 »
Thought someone might be interested in the following report from a mate of mine who went...


Mike James, Gav and myself attended the VXR day today at Donington Park and it
was a blast.

We were in a group of about 30 and there were about the same number of cars
available so as you completed one session you just strolled over to another
car and jumped in.

The Corsa, Astra & Vectra were stunning but personnally I did not like the V8
particularly. In all we had 1 1/2 hours on the track and did about 15-20 laps
in total. The VXR package IMHO is very good. Oh we also had a lap with one of
their competition drivers hjust to see what they could really do!!

We then moved on to the "Driving Excitement" arena to do a short agility
section and a handbrake turn in a gap between an inflatable car and some

Pleased to say the Se7ners held their end up with Mike & I coming runners up
on the agility and Gav managing to totally knacker the gearbox on one of the

In all it was very well organised and well worth the money so many thanks to
whoever put us on to it.

General Discussion Area / Ruddy MX-5 coil pack
« on: 06 July 2007, 09:18:27 »
SWMBO comes home last night in a very ropey sounding MX-5 complete with eggy smells from the cat and all sorts "That's running as rough as a bear's @rse" thinks I.

"There's something not quite right with my car"

Bit of an understatement. It's running on 2 cylinders. Anyway, a bit of detective work later and it's got a knackered coil pack  >:(

So, time to phone round the motor factors.


General Discussion Area / Ban vehicles over 100MPH?
« on: 04 July 2007, 12:04:56 »

He clearly has a fantastic grasp of the physics of car design!  :o


General Discussion Area / Tool bulk buy
« on: 06 June 2007, 15:09:31 »
Hi Guys,

One of the chaps on the Westfield forum organises an annual bulk buy of tools. Basically, he collects a shedload of orders (last years total was a shade under 60 grand) and has them shipped over. Once they arrive in Harwich, or wherever, they are ferried around the country by volunteers until they get to those who ordered them.

I wondered if anyone would be interested in this year's order. The following are the items he has proposed:

Set of pliers
set of ring spanners
set of open ended spanners
set of combo (ratchets - same as 2006)
impact wrench (same)
Tool box (larger)
3 sets of socket sets (1/4" 3/8" and 1/2")
set of hammers
set of screwdrivers
set of axle stand
set of wheel dollys
engine crane
large capacity compressor
large lathe (like the machine mart item)
MiG welder
set of torque wrenches
lead lights
air tools (1/4", 3/8", 1/4" guns, air riveter, angle grinder, right angle drill)
Dremel type tool
an assortment of sundries like allen keys, punches bearing pullers etc.
Sand blaster
bench grinder
electric drill
bench drill

For more info, the link to the original thread on the WSCC site is Here :;f=1;t=52505;st=0

I had a set of ratchet spanners from the last lot and I'm very happy with them.

I'll keep you updated with progress.


General Discussion Area / More cheap air tools..
« on: 26 June 2007, 11:47:36 »
...this time at Netto on Thursday.

Click on "special offers". 50 Litre compressor for 70 quid and a load of other air tools.

No idea whatsoever what they're like and there's not a Netto within miles of me but it may be useful to someone.


A bit off topic on an Omega forum perhaps but my brother has got a 2001 Astra SXi with the Z18XE engine. It's about time the cam belt was changed and something around the exhaust manifold is blowing. Don't know if it's a cracked manifold or the gasket, broken studs, etc. yet because I haven't had the heatshields off. It quietens down completely when warmed up, sounds like a tractor when cold.

Just wondering if anyone's got any experience with this engine. In particular:

Any gotchas with the cam belt on this engine?
Does anyone have a cam locking kit they would be willing to loan?
Is a waterpump change advised with the cam belt? Does cam belt drive the waterpump?
What's the likely prognosis on the blowing exhaust manifold? As bad as the Omega? (cracked manifold, broken studs, etc?)

Thanks in advance,


General Discussion Area / VXR Track Day
« on: 03 May 2007, 21:15:09 »
Thought this may be of interest to someone.


General Discussion Area / Welders - What should I look for?
« on: 30 April 2007, 21:39:28 »
Well, it looks like the Westfield is off the road for a week that's forecast to be nice and sunny for want of some welding to the exhaust.  :'(

I've often thought I'd like to learn to weld and it would have come in very useful this weekend so I'm thinking about getting a welder and having a go.

I'm just wondering what to get.

I've got some knowledge about the various types of welding but have never tried it. I assume a MIG welder is probably the best all-rounder?

Usage, assuming I get the hang of it, will be for small jobs in steel and the odd bit of stainless (i.e. when my exhaust breaks again).

I'm not looking to do a restoration or anything so it won't need to cope with long sessions of welding and it probably won't need to cope with particularly thick metal.

So, what should I look for in terms of min / max current, duty cycle, etc?

Is it an advantage to be able to work with gasless wire (I assume I want to be able to use gas?)

Are there any pitfalls to just buying a used one off ebay (other than the obvious) or would a new unit be better?

In addition to a welder, some gas, wire, a mask and gloves, oh, and a fire extinguisher, what other bits and pieces will I need to get started?

Any recommendations welcome.



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