Barney626's Nimbus 2008 197

Discussion in 'Projects/Progress Threads' started by Barney626, Sep 10, 2017.

  1. Barney626

    Barney626 Winner - POTM December 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197 - Nimbus
    Right. Had the car about a week now. Only reason I didn't make this earlier is there was a possibility it was going back to the dealer as will become clear below. Pictures were/will be taken by a mix of phone camera and DSLR. As a result of this being a week late, this first post is going to be fairly long....

    Think we'll start with a few pics from when it was at the dealer:



    Car was pretty much fully stock. Wheels had been resprayed to black by a previous owner, sub frame had been replaced due to some corrosion and the bumper had clearly been taken off/resprayed (Little bit of overspray on some of the plastic trim).

    A fairly... unique feature of this particular car is it's interior. It seems like someone has ripped the leather seats out of a LUX model and put them in this. As far as I know LUX models don't come in nimbus so this can't be one. Other possibility is these are just imitation ones, but they are still fairly impressive quality. The leather is quite nice, the pictures don't do it justice...


    So the car came with a few faults. First time we went to view the car we couldn't get the fuel cap open. With a quick google the best guess was the fuel cap solenoid which locks/unlocks the cap was broken and needed replacing. Another issue was the windscreen washer jets wouldn't trigger unless the rear jet had been used first.

    We agreed with the dealer that we would come back in a week and get the car after they had fixed these issues. Came back a week later and sure enough the fuel cap opened. Happy days I thought as I locked the car and went into the office to do the paper work.

    30 seconds later and the alarm starts going off... Unlock the car and relock, sure enough same thing happens again. Got their 'mechanic' to come over and have a look. He clearly had no idea what he was doing and couldn't even remember what he had done to the solenoid. We were told it was replaced but turns out he had just pulled the pin which locks the cap up so it didn't lock. It still needed replacing...

    Eventually took the car with the understanding that any cost in repairing this issue would be covered by the dealer. While we waited for a repair to lock the car you had to put the key in the slot, press the start button 5 times then close the door and press lock twice. That would lock the car but not engage the alarm.

    After waiting a week for a new solenoid from renault, replaced it and it did indeed fix the alarm issue. Seems like the car detected the lock wasn't engaging and had a hissy fit...

    The wiper issue was fixed with a new stalk (Thanks to the people on this forum for that suggestion

    A few more pics when a pretty decent sunset happened near me. Shame I didn't have my DSLR with me at the time, all of these were taken on an S6...



    So, with that all out the way it was onto fixing the car up/minor mods.

    Previous owners had kept the car up to date on servicing but clearly had no DIY ability. Bulbs were Sh*t, B pillar seals were totally ruined and there are some fairly bad chips in paint.

    Bulbs replaced with nightbreakers and osram side lights. Surprised to find the bulbs I pulled out appear to be the original, 9 year old main beam bulbs... With the new bulbs in no more yellow light and the main beam actually makes a difference. Difficult to get pictures on how much a difference the new bulbs made but they are 1000x better and well worth what they cost.

    Best pic I could get with my phone, the white line at the end of the road is a line of reflective corner markers, thats about 200-300m away to give scale:


    Only took me about 5 hours to do. There is a special place in hell reserved for the person who designed the headlight clusters, especially for the little metal wire bracket which pops out and falls to the bottom tray of the car. Need a magnet on a stick to get it back...

    Seals replaced today actually, was waiting for some dry weather to do it but gave up and just wedged the car into my very small garage. Just tore the old ones out and scraped the glue off with a metal plate while heating the glass it was on. Came off fairly easily. Shoved the new seal in place and pulled the tape off it while it was still in the slot. I suppose time will tell how well they stick...

    Old seal:



    Still have not addressed the areas of paintwork which need attention. Bought some 'renault mercury grey' touchup paint in halfrauds which unsurprisingly was a totally different colour (Not sure why I bought it aha). I've heard suggestions of just asking for some paint to get mixed with a paint code being suggested. Not sure how well the touchup paint will mix with the rest of the paintwork? Any advice on what to do with these? Below are some pics of the paintwork issues...


    A terrible touchup attempt by a previous owner on the passenger side sill:



    Now onto some cosmetic stuff.

    CLIO Debadge on the back, always hated the look of clios with the CLIO badge still on it.

    And a Nimbus 197 wouldn't be complete without.... black diamonds. #teamblackdiamond


    Also a stubby antenna.


    Currently in the process of experimenting with plasti-dipping the 'Renault Sport' badge. Drying in the garage as I write this.


    Not sure how the finish is going to come out, but thats the good thing with plasti dip, if you hate it just peel it off.

    *Had to split the post in two due to image limit*
    Tiggy Rascal and peter like this.

  2. Barney626

    Barney626 Winner - POTM December 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197 - Nimbus
    Also tried re-spraying the front grilles with Halfords Satin black. Came out really well and the durability seems to be fairly good. Just popped them out from the front (Sharp thing under the bottom edge and lever, the plastic clips are fairly heavy duty) and sprayed. Think I might do the same for the diffuser as I still have a lot of paint left...


    Drying from final coat:



    Car also came with some pretty old mats in them which needed replacing. The drivers mat would catch on the pedals and nearly got me killed a few times when it held the accelerator...

    Just got the new ones today and fitted them.




    And finally for this post, the seat belts. They were utterly filthy...


    Tried soaking them with regular washing liquid but that just didn't cut it and ended up using cilit Bang black mould remover which has a bit of bleach in it... Seemed to do the trick but now the belts smell like disinfectant, slowly fading but still there...



    Now the belts are actually silver, all the spots are gone.

    So, that rounds up the fairly long first post.

    Things to do next are fairly limited as I can't do many mods due to insurance (Suspension is totally off limits :confused:).

    Planning on painting the calipers red. Have a can of hammerite and brembo stickers waiting. Just need a dry day or two to get that done as I can't get the wheels off in my garage (too small).

    Also mentioned before looking at painting the diffuser but not sure how smooth I can get the finish with a standard spray can.

    Will post updates on the plasti-dip experiment and a few more 'cinematic' pictures now I have my DSLR up and running.
    Benno, Pav, Sean197 and 1 other person like this.
  3. sevenfourate

    sevenfourate Devotee of OCD Paid Member

    Lowestoft, England.
    Racing Blue RS-200
    My god.

    Did you have time to eat, sleep and s**t in the last week between all those jobs !

    Thats a great start to ownership / making the car yours / ****sorting all 'those' niggles out. WELL DONE :smile:

    Love the seats. Really nice (Is that a rip near the handle ?) :-(

    And welcome to #Team Black Diamond. Oh yes Kevlar really will approve.

  4. Barney626

    Barney626 Winner - POTM December 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197 - Nimbus
    I was up at 7 this morning washing the car, but judging by some of the stuff other members have done that isn't considered that insane aha.

    I think that's why the car hadn't gone. When you turn up to find the fuel cap cant be opened, I imagine that would put off a lot of people. Still think I paid too much for it given the condition it was in but honestly, I had been looking for a few weeks and just wanted to get one.

    There is a bit of damage yes. I'll try to get some better pics of it tomorrow. As far as I can tell it's just the surface leather that has ripped and come away from the mesh underneath. I did buy a 'leather repair kit' but haven't mustered the courage to apply the vinyl adhesive and dye it comes with...

    It seems structurally sound at the moment, just taking care with it to try and prevent it being even more damaged. The way the seat is formed you very rarely see it so it isn't a constant reminder every time you get in/out of the car.
  5. Barney626

    Barney626 Winner - POTM December 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197 - Nimbus
    Also forgot to mention the situation with my speakers.

    Turned the radio on while I was at the dealer to check it all worked but didn't listen very closely. Got home and realised only the tweeters and front driver speaker were working. I had just put in the AUX cable for my phone so spent an hour fiddling with connections on the radio thinking I had knocked something. Managed to blow the fuse for the radio/wipers in the process...

    Couldn't figure it out so had a quick google and found a thread on these forums about cups not coming with rear speakers or something. I literally asked myself out loud "Are there even speakers behind the grilles". A quick look with a torch showed that the front passenger speaker had been removed and the two rear ones were empty too :censored:

    Looks like a previous owner felt like making a bit of extra money...

    Promptly bought a set of Pioneer TS-G1333i to replace the front speakers. Had to get a £2 adapter for the spade connectors and use a dremmel to cut off the extra 2 tabs on the speaker. Bit of a rough job but they are hidden behind mesh so wasn't too worried.


    New speakers sound great. Holding off on the rear ones for now due to limited funds.

    Was amazing how much more treble the OEM ones need. Had it on +7 for both bass and treble but now down to +2 on treble.
  6. Barney626

    Barney626 Winner - POTM December 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197 - Nimbus
    Ok so a bit of an update on the plasti-dip experiment. I've peeled the excess plastic off so it is now 'finished'.


    I have to be honest, I'm disappointed with how it turned out, for a number of reasons.

    Firstly, the texture is not as smooth as I was hoping. If you look at the closeup above it seems to have a lot of little dents in the surface. This isn't from dirt on the badge but when I sprayed it I did notice there were a lot of tiny little bubbles forming which eventually went away, wonder if it's an after-effect of that.

    Secondly, the edges have come away from the letters in some areas. This is probably going to be a serious issue for durability. As soon as a pressure washer even goes near it, it will probably start peeling back from the edge... The actual surface doesn't feel very durable either.


    Thirdly, while I was peeling it off another layer of clear material was coming off in some areas. I had seen breaks in a flim that was covering the letters and just assumed it was only on the letters. Now I realise it's covering the whole area and the already slightly cracked areas have been made worse while I peeled the plastic. I'm still not really sure what this layer is. If it's a protective film I cant find the edge anywhere so I'm wondering if its the clear lacquer that they spray on to protect the paint.

    You can see where it's started to come away from the paint in these pics.



    I'm not really sure what I can do to repair it. Any advice?

    In worst case scenario, I end up peeling the rest of the plasti dip off and buying a new badge for £30 to spray it with actual paint (Same stuff I used for my front grilles). But I'd rather not spend the £30 if I don't have to.
  7. Pav

    Pav Moderator

    albi blue 197 with boost
    wow what an introduction!!you have done lots to it..i had exactly the same problem with my fuel cap..the whole mechanism had to be replaced,cost me £40...i see you are not messing about and you get things done..
    glad you are on the team black diamond too :thumb:
    hope she treats you well with no more silly issues..
  8. kevlar

    kevlar Gold Member

    Seat Ateca...WTF happened.
    Looking good, yeh agree think the RS badges need to be sprayed properly to get a good finish - does look smart though in black.
  9. Benno

    Benno Gold Member

    Wow, okay another 197 I'm jealous of!! You've made a great start to it, definitely approve of the Black Diamonds. Unfortunately my diamonds were plasti dipped when I bought the car, and quite quickly after a few pressure washes at work it quite quickly started to peel...won't be using plasti dip anywhere near mine. Hopefully fingers crossed it stays on your RS badge a bit longer!

    How much force did you use to prize the front grilles off? Mine want to come off with the bumper!! Couldn't take a picture of what you used to pry it out with and where you inserted it could you? I want mine done before Trax if I can get the time!
  10. Barney626

    Barney626 Winner - POTM December 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197 - Nimbus
    Yeh I'm worried about the dip durability too. Tbh if they do end up coming off from wear at least it would give me an excuse to pay the £35 for a new badge (Which is what I really want to do)...

    The grilles do take a bit of encouragement, like I said the clips on them are fairly sturdy. Just have to removed them bottom edge first as the top edge acts like a hinge. I used a screw driver but you have to be careful not to damage the paint underneath.

    I could try and get a video of taking them out and shove it on here if that helps.
    Benno likes this.
  11. Benno

    Benno Gold Member

    Yeah. Think I'm just going to remove my RS badge completely, don't know if I like it. However black does look a lot better!

    If you could get a little vid, I'd be more than grateful! Worst case scenario it'll be front bumper off...would give me an excuse to change all the bulbs I guess? Rather than spend a stupid length of time changing them!!
  12. Barney626

    Barney626 Winner - POTM December 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197 - Nimbus
    So the grille has 3 push clips at the bottom and 3 tabs at the top. The tabs hook under the upper edge while the clips pop in the bottom edge to hold it. You need to get something long under the bottom edge closest to the headlight and push the edge or clip up enough to pop that clip out. Then just work your way along the bottom edge and pull once all the clips have popped out.

    Getting it back in is much more of a pain. You have to start off a little too far to the left as the grille needs to slot into the guide behind it. Once you get those meshed up you need to hook the 3 tabs under the top edge then push up each clip to get them in the slots.

    Easier to see what I mean on the video...

    Why does my phone camera make my hands look like they belong to a 12 year old -_-
    Benno likes this.
  13. Benno

    Benno Gold Member

    Brilliant! Thanks Barney, will have a little play with mine when it's back from the garage!
  14. Barney626

    Barney626 Winner - POTM December 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197 - Nimbus
    So the next jobs for this car:

    Repaint Calipers
    I just don't have a garage big enough to do this so need to wait for a dry spell. Looks like next week is a possible but I'm going away for the weekend so would need to be fairly rapid with it. Plan is red calipers with black brembo stickers.

    Aquire new spare key
    Car only came with one unfortunately. Car hasn't been nicked off the path yet so don't think someone pocketed it to nick it later. Looking at this as a possible:

    Not sure how trust worthy they are, anyone got any advice on how to go about a new key? Is it still a case of you have to go to renault or can 3rd party places do it now?

    Respray diffuser
    Waiting to see how well the paint on my grilles holds up. If it looks good after a few days/weeks will probably use the same stuff on my diffuser.

    Fix paint issues
    Still quite a few areas that the paint needs some love. Still deciding whether to use spray paint or just touchup with a brush to cover the scuffs/holes (Pics in the first post).

    More Stickers
    Got a little package on the way, should be here in the next few days. Can you guess what it is?

    Possibly new RS badge to replace plasti-dipped one
    Again waiting on how well the plasti-dip holds up and whether I get sick of it looking a little tatty close up.

    Rear speakers
    Car currently only has front speakers so some rear ones would be nice. Not currently a major issue so will probably be one of the later things I do.
  15. Barney626

    Barney626 Winner - POTM December 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197 - Nimbus
    Just found my rear reg plate on the ground where I park my car :oops:

    Off to halfords for some new double sided foam tape...
    Benno and kevlar like this.
  16. DS197

    DS197 POTM Winner - June 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197
    The bubbling may be from not holding the can upright when spraying (which I don't think is the case here) or the contents of the can not being warm. It's best to put the cans is warm/slightly hot water for about 10 minutes. Regarding the edges of letters, once you've finished spraying a coat, you'll need to go around the edges with a toothpick or something thin to stop the coat of plastidip on the letters drying as a whole to that on the rest of the paint, if that makes sense.
  17. Barney626

    Barney626 Winner - POTM December 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197 - Nimbus
    Sprayed upright and soaked in hot water for 10 minutes before each coat.

    Didn't do the tooth pick trick but the badges themselves are a decent distance from the surface of the car. Would have thought that gap would be enough to separate them. I think I just nicked the A while I was pealing around it so kinda my fault.
  18. R11HOY

    R11HOY Paid Member

    Conlig County Down Northern Ireland
    Renaultsport Clio 197 (2008)
    There's some real nice touches going on you l need to clean the seat belts especially the rear ones, will also for sure have a go at the front grills myself after viewing this. Great job congrats hope the issues disappear. .:thumb:
  19. Barney626

    Barney626 Winner - POTM December 2017 Paid Member

    Clio 197 - Nimbus
    Reg plate re-attached with new sticky pads.

    While I was down there noticed the cover to one of the reg plate lights had cracked in half with one half missing. New light ordered off ebay for £10
  20. Pav

    Pav Moderator

    albi blue 197 with boost
    you dont mess around,do you?nice job..thanks for making the short video too..will be beneficial for lots of our members..

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