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Is it better to leave the past in the past? #1650781
11/05/2021 20:28
11/05/2021 20:28
Joined: May 2021
Posts: 4
Northampton
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Hillbilly11113 Offline OP
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Hillbilly11113  Offline OP
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Northampton
So well....strange to be back. Its been that long i dont actually remember what my login name was when i last posted. If anyone does remember the story then let me know......

I was spending a couple of hours a day on this forum from the middle of 2008 for a couple of years.

In that time i had a Sprint Blue 20VT, with the usuals, start off and after some fiddling nothing has to this day made me feel like that car did or set the hairs on the back of my neck on end in the way driving that car did. While i had that i bought a parts car that had an LE interior (wasnt an LE), some nicer wheels, a naughty exhaust and gave a healthy amount of spare parts to start improving on the Sprinty. I even went to meet Nigel once to borrow some diagnostic kit to try and get the engine on the parts car running to see if it was worth saving, it wasnt, the hack who i bought it off had put a new cam belt on an engine that had already lunched itself which i found out when i took the engine to pieces and turned the head into a coffee table.

I fed the habit and was working my way round the lovely Sprinty putting transplanted reworked parts from the parts car on slowly progressing my rolling project into something that it should be. Hours spent tinkering, hours spent enjoying, driving home from track days with no brakes after teaching far far more exotic machinery a lesson. Nothing fed the petrol head in me more than that car......until one day i was minding my own business going round an island and got hit and ended up hitting a very large lamp post. Bye bye Sprinty.

It was less than a week after i had scrapped the shell from the parts car............ cry . So the Sprinty was split out, all the major parts including the engine which was sweeeeettttttt and the LE interior all went out to people on the forum. Names which over the time have faded and i feel bad as time on the forum was something that holds a special place in my heart, i didnt really have anything else at the time....just car, work and forum....

After a couple of mistakes I bought a cheap Broom Yellow 20VT from ebay desperate to try and get back the feelings id had before, it seemed fine on the test drive and the guy seemed genuine, i left it idling for ages and the oil pressure held up fine.....until i reached the edge of London on the way home after parting with the cash. Idling in traffic on a busy escape from London oil pressure dropped to around 0.5 bar. I didnt have anywhere to stop and once off idle oil pressure seemed fine so i carried on and gently coaxed her home.

A large amount of coupe parts still there i got to work dropped some super swanky oil in, plugs, every fluid and a couple of items to try and tease it into wanting to be. For a short time it seemed like it had worked. Though it didnt improve much as then the turbo let go, making clouds of white smoke at every start up. I bought a breathed on turbo from a forum member and took it for a trip to Joe at CountryCruising, looks like hes still about and probably wont remember me fondly (sorry Joe) to have all the belts done and the turbo fitted. He warned me that there was a murmer from the bottom end. At the time i felt i didnt have the money to get the shells redone so didnt bother, big mistake and started to slip into enjoying Coupe ownership again.

When The only memory ....... i started borrowing money from pretty much everywhere to take her back to Joe to attempt CPR along with a spare bottom end from the parts car id had before in the hope that one good could be made of 2 bad. After initially sounding great and being gentle and hoping it was going to hold together after a couple of days it proved impossible and the only thing i could do was contact Joe and ask her to give me something for her (which he did which i probably didnt deserve) and take her away and make use of the few good bits. I worked on selling all the bits i had left (literally had filled my flat with car parts at that point) and left and then never came back to the forum.

Every time i see a Coupe which well just isnt often enough i still get an aching pain in my heart for that Sprint Blue and hate the way that Coupe life finished for me.

With so so few seeming to be about and ones that are left looking like they need a work I'm asking myself now that I'm married, with kids and more financially secure should i delve back in and try and find a rolling project that can be tinkered and fiddled with, theres no mechanical job i couldnt do on it now (bodywork is beyond me i dont have the patience) and although not the largest budget i could afford a steady flow of parts to massage one back to life and keep it that way.

However....i find myself conflicted....should i?

Last edited by Edinburgh; 11/05/2021 21:06. Reason: for an easier read....
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650783
11/05/2021 21:02
11/05/2021 21:02
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,072
Warrington
G_Man Offline
Club Member 1656
G_Man  Offline
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Enjoying the ride

Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,072
Warrington
Hi Hillbilly and welcome back smile. Similar story to me - I waved cheerio to my 20vt in 2009 due to an expanding family but the coupe gets under your skin and knew one day I'd be back. And in 2017 so it came to pass and bought the 16v. The obvious difference between 2007 and 2017 is the increasing scarcity of the coupe and picking a fundamentally sound car. One of the specialists I use said they encounter coupe owners who have bought rolling projects but in reality they're only fit for scrap unless you're willing to spend really silly money. I personally would buy a coupe for sale on the forum, vouched for by some of the specialists then add you're own personal mark to the car? Alternatively we all like a coupe resurrection story - particularly when it's someone else's cash being used laugh wink Good luck thumb

Last edited by G_Man; 11/05/2021 21:05.

77 77
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650784
11/05/2021 21:10
11/05/2021 21:10
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 12,944
Auld Reekie
Edinburgh Offline
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Edinburgh  Offline
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I AM a Coop

Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 12,944
Auld Reekie
Hi Hillbilly and what a poignant read (hope you don't mind but I spaced it out a bit as I kept losing my place laugh )

If you still have the bug and have taken the trouble to re-register on here then that speaks volumes, but at their advanced years it's always likely to be bodywork and tinworm that defeat you, however if you can get one that's recoverable and you can turn your hand to the spanners then it sounds like you might already secretly have made up your mind laugh


BumbleBee back:)
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: G_Man] #1650785
11/05/2021 21:23
11/05/2021 21:23
Joined: May 2021
Posts: 4
Northampton
H
Hillbilly11113 Offline OP
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Hillbilly11113  Offline OP
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Joined: May 2021
Posts: 4
Northampton
Thanks both for the replies.

@G_Man , it seems i still havent learned my lesson have i. I have a strange dream about rescuing one from near death and stopping it becoming another statistic on "howmanyleft". Im worried that if i spend time saving up to get a good one then ill never get to there as the good ones will just keep appreciating. When i bought my first it cost 1200 quid and was completely sound just a normal 90k car that needed refreshening mechanically.

@Edinburgh, thank you, it makes a lot more sense with your spacing. Guess ive lost the knack of writing a good post! I did spend some time going back to when i was on to look for previous posts but with none of the names its impossible to find. I did re-register as i wanted to see what was for sale and what had recently sold and was considering a post like the above. I want to try and learn from before and see if im just looking through rose tinted glasses and thought the forum was a good place to start. Reading the end of your post did cause a little smirk...i think i am leaning. I just dont want to bite off more than i can chew.

Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650786
11/05/2021 21:54
11/05/2021 21:54
Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 664
Dorchester
R
respace Offline
Enjoying the ride
respace  Offline
Enjoying the ride
R

Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 664
Dorchester
Many of us have had similar experiences, thought we'd purged the bug only to return, they get under your skin like few others. If you look on ebay parts there is an interesting project in Somerset that might ignite a spark, there's also several in the for sale section.
Good luck and welcome back.

Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650789
12/05/2021 06:09
12/05/2021 06:09
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,066
Kent, South East
Cooperman Offline
Club Membership Secretary
Cooperman  Offline
Club Membership Secretary
Enjoying the ride

Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,066
Kent, South East
It sounds a familiar story, these cars get under your skin, in your blood and so on, I think the appeal only grows as there are fewer cars out there these days and finding a “goodun” can be a bit of a challenge.
Welcome back and I hope you find what you are looking for driving

Last edited by Cooperman; 12/05/2021 06:09.

[Linked Image]
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650790
12/05/2021 09:35
12/05/2021 09:35
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 591
Westcliff-on-sea,essex
aust_powers Offline
club member 1889
aust_powers  Offline
club member 1889
Enjoying the ride

Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 591
Westcliff-on-sea,essex
Hi Hillbilly,

It looks like your were floating around the forum around the time I was, I did the same, I sold my Yellow 20vt to Poweritalia for breaking in 2010 which was a big mistake due to starting a new family and needing something more practical.

I went through a few cars over the years, mainly various E46 BMW's and when my son started becoming interested in cars I showed him the photos of the Fiat, he started looking out of the window of the car and would occasionally spot one on a drive or passing by on a motorway saying "Daddy look a Fiat Coupe!!". 10 years on I decided to go for a cheap Yellow 20v NA for £900 to see if I still liked them, it was a bit tatty but it brought back the feelings of the original the moment I sat back in it!

We used it to go on adventures and Urban exploring at weekends, but the turbo bug kept biting until I decided to go for a Black vt6 that was on ebay at the beginnning of the year.

The Journey with this one has not been smooth so far but I have to say the forum although quieter than it used to be is just as helpful, Joe (Countrycruising) has helped me off his own back over the phone with an electrical issue I was having, Roger at Power Delvelopments is fixing something at the moment on it but I have to say the Magic is still there, no other car has the combination of that feeling that the car gives you for better or worse smile If you are thinking of coming back then do it!, take your time to get a good car and do try to get a forum car if possible but you wont regret it.

Good Luck!


GT28rs,Pro alloy FMIC,Blueflame exhaust,SIP, Bosch 440cc,Helix organic clutch,Stage 3,331bhp,295lbft
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650793
12/05/2021 13:47
12/05/2021 13:47
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,397
S. Wales. Way beyond my means
Gripped Offline
Club Member
Gripped  Offline
Club Member
I need some sleep

Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,397
S. Wales. Way beyond my means
Agree with the above.... Depending on what you're after you could consider a NA or VIS which are generally less trouble... The VIS in particular seems pretty reliable.

But totally understand you probably wanting a turbo. I've looked at a few over the last 5 years or so and have always walked away usually because something wasn't quite right or I got scared of the potential money pit. So I've stuck with my VIS for now and am currently in the process of tarting it up and addressing a few rusty areas. Mechanically at 106,000 miles she's still spot on.

Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650795
12/05/2021 15:20
12/05/2021 15:20
Joined: Jul 2007
Posts: 475
S Wales
Morrison Offline
Club member 1566
Morrison  Offline
Club member 1566
Enjoying the ride

Joined: Jul 2007
Posts: 475
S Wales
Welcome back Hillbilly, as the others have said - once bitten, forever smitten.

As someone whose just bought a nicely restored sprint blue, I can say you should totally do it. As usual with coops there's 3 versions available, dogs, pedigree dogs and the dogs danglies. You can pay anywhere from £500 to 20k nowadays.

Ps - There's a lovely silver one in the for sale section just needs someone to continue the tlc journey!

Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650799
12/05/2021 19:40
12/05/2021 19:40
Joined: May 2021
Posts: 4
Northampton
H
Hillbilly11113 Offline OP
Newbie
Hillbilly11113  Offline OP
Newbie
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Joined: May 2021
Posts: 4
Northampton
I do feel a bit better reading these posts that the Coupe has buried itself deep in my heart and wont leave....At least its not just me thats always been drawn back!!

There was always a wealth of useful knowledge on the forum and im glad that theres still some people around to share it. Though i do find it a little strange it only takes 5 mins to catch up now compared to it taking hours a few years ago.

@Gripped, ive considered the lower powered Coupes and it seems that it is easier to find a reasonable looking one but ive had 3 Bravo HGTs with the VIS in (1 before coupe time, 1 during coupe time and one since) and although the warble is delicious i just dont think it would give me the same tingle as the turbo would and dont think it would feed the itch.

@Morrison, its been on the watch list for a couple of days....im aware and would be lying if i said i wasnt tempted and will be keeping a close eye on how far it goes.

Im working through trying to work out what is on the is/is not list. Controversially the wife has said no tan interior or she wont step foot in it (no large debates please). So that already limits a little. I think at the moment im trying to educate myself again and work out what the important is and spending time reading back on some of the posts on the forum for the last decade to see whats gone right and whats gone wrong and hopefully learn from it and not buy one thats going to drop apart on the drive before ive even rebuilt the rear suspension. The price fluctuations are also huge and from what i can understand not always justified.

Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650802
12/05/2021 22:32
12/05/2021 22:32
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 12,944
Auld Reekie
Edinburgh Offline
Club President
Edinburgh  Offline
Club President
I AM a Coop

Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 12,944
Auld Reekie
Originally Posted by Hillbilly11113

There was always a wealth of useful knowledge on the forum and im glad that theres still some people around to share it. Though i do find it a little strange it only takes 5 mins to catch up now compared to it taking hours a few years ago.


It's true, the considerable reduction in coupés left and associated drop in ownership, along with various social media outlets has meant the forum is a lot quieter these days but the core values remain along with the expertise that's been amassed over the years smile


Originally Posted by Hillbilly11113
spending time reading back on some of the posts on the forum for the last decade


Blimey you'll have no time to go out looking for a coop then laugh


BumbleBee back:)
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650817
13/05/2021 13:43
13/05/2021 13:43
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 32,726
Berlin
barnacle Offline
Club Member 18 - ex-Minister without Portfolio
barnacle  Offline
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Forum Demigod

Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 32,726
Berlin
Some of us have never been able to leave... tongue


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Don't get no respect! Coupe Fiat 1994-2000 - an owner's guide <-- clicky!
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: barnacle] #1650819
13/05/2021 14:47
13/05/2021 14:47
Joined: Feb 2006
Posts: 5,267
Essex
Trappy Offline
Club Member 1834
Trappy  Offline
Club Member 1834
Forum is my life

Joined: Feb 2006
Posts: 5,267
Essex
Originally Posted by barnacle
Some of us have never been able to leave... tongue


^^This

Newborns, periods of unemployment, house moves, catestrophic engine failure / rot, nothing gets between me and my Coupé. Coming up to 17 years now smile


F****** b****** thing...
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: barnacle] #1650851
14/05/2021 19:46
14/05/2021 19:46
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,072
Warrington
G_Man Offline
Club Member 1656
G_Man  Offline
Club Member 1656
Enjoying the ride

Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,072
Warrington
A bit like Hotel California.. laugh


77 77
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650852
14/05/2021 21:00
14/05/2021 21:00
Joined: May 2021
Posts: 4
Northampton
H
Hillbilly11113 Offline OP
Newbie
Hillbilly11113  Offline OP
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Joined: May 2021
Posts: 4
Northampton
I wish i had stayed or at least come back sooner. Theres not a lot to choose from. Is interesting disappearing down the internet hole trying to learn about what to look for. The project pages have been interesting. Really sad reading how many have disappeared due to corrosion. Was something i thought more associated with properly old cars (putting inner arches and front floor pans in a mk2 Escort i thought was as bad as it would get).

I have enjoyed and fell back in love with the multitude of different pictures of the proper marmite car that is the Coupe.

As i work in the car industry its quite interesting canvassing opinion, from the lovers to the haters and all the different strong opinions the Coupe induces.

For all the people that are still here dont act like you dont love it. You know you still look back every time you walk away from them and grin and you wouldnt have it any other way.

Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650855
15/05/2021 08:44
15/05/2021 08:44
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 32,726
Berlin
barnacle Offline
Club Member 18 - ex-Minister without Portfolio
barnacle  Offline
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Forum Demigod

Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 32,726
Berlin
Originally Posted by Hillbilly11113

Really sad reading how many have disappeared due to corrosion. Was something i thought more associated with properly old cars


Yabbut... twenty-five years is *way* beyond what car makers would like things to last - they reckon you'll get a new one in two or three years, and their jobs and profits rely on making sure you do...

And think about it: in 1995 would you really have expected an Italian car - come to think of it, pretty much any car - to have survived past 2020? It wasn't that long previously that Lancia pulled out of the UK market because they were rusting before they got them off the ships, and not much before that when Ferraris were rusty red Italian sports cars that you could barely give away.

The question with corrosion is always: is it worth my time (or someone else's time and my money) to repair it? In a modern economy, absent other influences, the answer is generally going to be no. But on the other hand, there's a couple of Japanese chaps restoring a Datsun 240Z down to the level of recreating the individual pressings from which it was made - because there's no way they're still available, and the ones on the car are basically lace.

Neil


[Linked Image]
Don't get no respect! Coupe Fiat 1994-2000 - an owner's guide <-- clicky!
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: barnacle] #1650859
15/05/2021 10:16
15/05/2021 10:16
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,072
Warrington
G_Man Offline
Club Member 1656
G_Man  Offline
Club Member 1656
Enjoying the ride

Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,072
Warrington
Totally agree with you Neil, sadly most body neglected coupes I suspect are beyond repair within a reasonable budget and thorough yearly checks need to be done to nip signs of rot asap before it gets out of control frown



Originally Posted by barnacle
But on the other hand, there's a couple of Japanese chaps restoring a Datsun 240Z down to the level of recreating the individual pressings from which it was made - because there's no way they're still available, and the ones on the car are basically lace.

Neil


Watched a recent episode of Car SOS restoring a Lancia Fulvia and they went to a specialists in the Midlands (?) where they fabricated sills and other panels for the car. Looked a bit of a one man band but good to see that such support services still exist smile. Maybe need to get his number and tap him up for the coupe laugh

Last edited by G_Man; 15/05/2021 10:17.

77 77
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650918
18/05/2021 12:16
18/05/2021 12:16
Joined: Oct 2007
Posts: 11,156
,
S
samsite999 Offline
I AM a Coop
samsite999  Offline
I AM a Coop
S

Joined: Oct 2007
Posts: 11,156
,
Hmmmm, I feel qualified to reply to this,

Yes and no, coupe ownership doesn't get easer with time and you have a lovely way of forgetting the pain along the way, if you left because of real world life and expenses that have now resolved, go for it, if you left because it was to hard to deal with on a daily bases and cost limitations are the same, leave well be.
the 20v NA is the car I keep coming back to as they are the most usable, less likely to cause me a bill, and perform as they need to for the moden road so I would very much recommend that if you are looking for a easy return... watch for rust though!

99% of the time I just want to go somewhere and get something done so a coupe doesn't fit my needs any more, if a nice 20v or 20vt was to turn up outside id not be upset, however between the panda and the abarth i have most things covered event wise

Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650922
18/05/2021 14:27
18/05/2021 14:27
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,397
S. Wales. Way beyond my means
Gripped Offline
Club Member
Gripped  Offline
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I need some sleep

Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,397
S. Wales. Way beyond my means
I don't think the Coupe rusts any more than any other car of the same age. In fact, if anything the body panels are very good, it's the underneath, sills and other exposed bits which suffer. Fiat nailed the rust proofing around the time of the Uno IIRC, but people still insist on telling me that Fiats are rust buckets based on 30+ years ago. (the fact that a lot of Coupes ARE rust buckets is just down to age not an inherent weakness).

I guess these are the same people who think Skoda are rubbish. wink

Oh and Alfa's are unreliable..... Well maybe I'll stop at that one. redcard redcard censored box coat


Last edited by Gripped; 18/05/2021 14:28.
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650923
18/05/2021 14:35
18/05/2021 14:35
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 12,944
Auld Reekie
Edinburgh Offline
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Edinburgh  Offline
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I AM a Coop

Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 12,944
Auld Reekie
I was stopped the other day by a delivery driver who recognised the Coupé, and during our chat he was adamant that the the soundest cars one could buy today were French and Italian - German makes such as VW and even Mercedes were surprisingly well down his list of cars that had an ability to stay reasonably rust-free.


BumbleBee back:)
Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: Hillbilly11113] #1650927
18/05/2021 16:38
18/05/2021 16:38
Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 664
Dorchester
R
respace Offline
Enjoying the ride
respace  Offline
Enjoying the ride
R

Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 664
Dorchester
I've just had the first bit of welding done on mine, nothing major. I don't recall much on my 16vt either, if you look at some of the Mercs and BMWs (even Jags) from the early to mid 2000s they are far worse.

Re: Is it better to leave the past in the past? [Re: respace] #1651063
23/05/2021 21:18
23/05/2021 21:18
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 4,810
Haslemere, Surrey
M
Mark_S Offline
Forum is my job
Mark_S  Offline
Forum is my job
M

Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 4,810
Haslemere, Surrey
I'm still here reading forum posts 5 years after selling mine .....


997 C4S

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