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Discussion Starter #1
Been a while since I posted so the update on our little Clio estate. MOT was due so had a look over it and both front springs had lost the lowest part of the coil. Also the handbrake was ineffective on one wheel. Bought a pair of Anschler springs from a well known European motor factor chain and had them fitted by a local mechanic. The car looked like an off-roader however more of a problem was N/S spring would touch the wheel arch turret when turning. I used a pry bar to pull it over on the strut mount but will have to change these crappy springs as after a few weeks they have not settled at all and the rubbing spring is ever more annoying.
I found the plastic coating on the handbrake cable where it joins the caliper had worn away and was causing the cable to be sticky. I spent a couple of hours trying to remove the coating as far up the cable as I could and greased up the wire but still sticky. I picked up a pair of cables at a different motor factor and fitted them. Completely different. Handbrake now sets within a few clicks of the lever and releases perfectly.
Also removed both headlights and soldered new connectors for the dipped bulbs. Both have been playing up for a couple of years and were burned. I fitted genuine Osram bulbs instead of cheap chinese bulbs which were the problem. Poor material on the contact spades causing high resistance and consequent heat damage.
Also the other week, I fitted snow tyres to the car. These had been sitting in my garage waiting for their day for three years. They dealt admirably with the "Beast from the East" and I refitted the summer tyres within a couple of days once the roads were clear. The current second "Mini Beast from the East" is a bit more benign here in the NE of Scotland so no need for them.
Anyway, the car passed its MOT with no advisories and I will change out the front springs myself when the weather fairs up. Also now showing 125,000 miles and still burns zero oil. A little bit noisier (1.5 dci) but still running well. I feel the frequent oil changes (+/- 6000 miles) help a lot. If they don't then it still makes me feel better knowing there is fresh oil in the engine for the sake of 30 quid.
 

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Super mod..
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Here we go again..springs with a German name but made in china....cheap and cheerfull is not always the best way to go..
 

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Congrats. :grin2:

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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #4
Here we go again..springs with a German name but made in china....cheap and cheerfull is not always the best way to go..
Yup - 拢40 odd for the pair but not a very good fit. Also the spring rate is far too hard and mismatched for the compliant rear suspension. I actually also had a pair of good used complete struts available but the upper mounting plates were different between the -> 2009 model and my 2012 hence easier to fit the new springs - doh!!! . I will be swapping these out when I next feel up for some more mechanicing.

I did read up on springs and modern springs are very advanced bits of engineering. Turns out the banana shape is to correct for the offset loading on the strut and the reason why modern front struts last so long before leaking. Just wish the springs were as long lasting.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
So - I got tired of the groans from the front N/S strut each time the steering was turned so yesterday I pulled it apart to try and sort it out. The bottom line is that the wrong springs were fitted. There are (at least) two different types of upper strut mount for the Mk3 Clio and there are specific springs for the two types. The lower spring seat is the same for both types but the upper spring seat is different. It does not appear to be facelift (2009 on) specific. There are also differences in the strut itself. The overall length is identical but it appears that the rod travel seems to be different.
Some pictures attached showing the witness mark on the strut turret and the matching scratch on the spring. What is more relevant is the two different style of upper strut bearing.
My car has the struts with the smaller triangular plates which are not handed. The other type which seem to be more common have a much larger bearing / spring seat diameter and the mounting plates are R/H and L/H specific. The spring that had been fitted were for the larger seat type but had been fitted upside down so the spring was eccentric on the lower strut seat hence fouling the turret.
Anyway - I did not have the correct springs to hand but did have a pair of used "wrong" style spring which were slightly lighter coils so I fitted them upside down and they do not foul the turrets. The car also rides 30mm lower than on the other even more "wrong" springs but still looks a little high to me. Anyway, I will return the "wrong" springs back to EurocarParts next week and try and source the correct springs which should have a small diameter at both ends. In the meantime the car does not sound like it is haunted going over bumps and rides much better.
At least the struts are very easy to remove. No need to disturb the hub, caliper or disc as the struts simply unbolts and comes out without obstruction.
 

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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #7
A bit of thread resurrection here but the story continues three years later. Last Thursday I was negotiating some nasty concrete speed bumps and extremely rough roadway (actually an old WW2 airstrip) and broke a front spring. As it happens, after the above messing around in 2018 I bought a pair of good used struts from a breaker (Mk4 Clio) and never got round to fitting them. Today was the day however. The copper greased bolts came apart without issue and swapped both struts in a couple of hours. The weather was lovely today so also changed the Oil and Filter which I now usually change every 10,000 miles but actually ran to 14,000 on this occasion. It was a whole lot more nasty looking than normal.
Next job was the rear caliper dust boot to change. I had removed the piston and cleaned every thing up a couple of weeks ago for the MOT but the boot had a slight split in it so I ordered a pair of oem TRW seal kits - Literally took 15 minutes including bleeding the caliper. First time round it took me more than an hour just to get the piston back in but practice makes it a whole lot quicker and almost perfect. The opposite brake was also dragging slightly and I expected to have to do the same job but in the event, the piston screwed back into the caliper freely and smoothly. The pads were pretty stiff in the guides so cleaned up the contact areas and applied copper grease in the appropriate spots and bolted it back up. Took the opportunity to replace the snow tires back to the summer wheels so here is hoping that we have seen the last of the snow for the year.

Whilst changing the oil I noticed the dog bone stabiliser link on the gearbox was shot. The engine rocks back and forth about 1/2" or so. Ordered a new one so that will be a job for later in the week but otherwise a quite enjoyable and productive day. Current mileage 186,000 miles.
IMG_20210222_155150.jpg
Think I have had my moneys worth from that strut. The broken spring destroyed the upper bearing housing.
 

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A bit of thread resurrection here but the story continues three years later. Last Thursday I was negotiating some nasty concrete speed bumps and extremely rough roadway (actually an old WW2 airstrip) and broke a front spring. As it happens, after the above messing around in 2018 I bought a pair of good used struts from a breaker (Mk4 Clio) and never got round to fitting them. Today was the day however. The copper greased bolts came apart without issue and swapped both struts in a couple of hours. The weather was lovely today so also changed the Oil and Filter which I now usually change every 10,000 miles but actually ran to 14,000 on this occasion. It was a whole lot more nasty looking than normal.
Next job was the rear caliper dust boot to change. I had removed the piston and cleaned every thing up a couple of weeks ago for the MOT but the boot had a slight split in it so I ordered a pair of oem TRW seal kits - Literally took 15 minutes including bleeding the caliper. First time round it took me more than an hour just to get the piston back in but practice makes it a whole lot quicker and almost perfect. The opposite brake was also dragging slightly and I expected to have to do the same job but in the event, the piston screwed back into the caliper freely and smoothly. The pads were pretty stiff in the guides so cleaned up the contact areas and applied copper grease in the appropriate spots and bolted it back up. Took the opportunity to replace the snow tires back to the summer wheels so here is hoping that we have seen the last of the snow for the year.

Whilst changing the oil I noticed the dog bone stabiliser link on the gearbox was shot. The engine rocks back and forth about 1/2" or so. Ordered a new one so that will be a job for later in the week but otherwise a quite enjoyable and productive day. Current mileage 186,000 miles.
View attachment 189334
Think I have had my moneys worth from that strut. The broken spring destroyed the upper bearing housing.
errrrrrrrrrrrrrrr................. snap !!
189352
snap.jpg
 
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