President's Report - September 2014

Greetings All,

After two failed attempts, the annual Battle of Waterloo, we hope (subject to weather), will be held on Sunday 28 September, from 10 am to 2 pm, in Kings Park, adjacent to the Carillon. Access will be signposted and will only be possible from the north bound lane of Kings Avenue. As in previous years, the event will be sponsored by Shannon’s. The PAC will run a BBQ, and coffee will also be available. There will also be lucky door prizes of bottles of wine.

All participants are required to bring a drip tray to put under their car. And, finally, don’t forget that 20 lucky French combatants will get to wear pink bérets (Les Bérets Roses) on the automotive battlefield.

As reported in last month’s column our 306 HDi has been sold, despite a last minute delay caused by the long-awaited arrival of a new towbar. Readers will recall that the car suffered rear-end damage in a minor accident, earlier this year, with the towbar taking most of the impact. A replacement towbar had to be made-to-order, because they are no longer available off-the-shelf and, not surprisingly, it took a few months to arrive. As far as I could tell, it was absolutely identical to the original towbar, right down to the same Hayman Reese sticker.

Also reported in last month’s column, my son, Geoff, recently returned from Iran, had his 505 serviced by Bill McNamee – nothing unusual in that. However, the 505 has now blown a head gasket and has had to be (sadly) pensioned off – the cost of repairs being too high to justify keeping the car on the road. The car was duly advertised for sale on Aussiefrogs and Gumtree websites, and sold to the people who ship 504s and 505s to Egypt, where they are recycled into taxis etc.

As a replacement car, Geoff opted for a 2002 Citroën Xsara VTS, with a 2 litre 16 valve engine (the same as the Peugeot 306 GTi6) and a 5 speed manual gearbox (the 306 GTi6 has a 6 speed box). With only 60,000 km on the clock, the car looks like a really good buy for $2,700. There were a few minor things to fix on the car – a broken electric mirror knob on the dashboard, a non-standard radio, a poorly working air vent and a dud windscreen washer jet – all fixed by a visit to a pick-it-yourself wrecker in Dapto (at a cost of $40), en route from Sydney to Canberra.

Geoff has the computer software to interrogate the engine management system, and was able to do so prior to buying the car. It also enabled him to install the security-coded radio from the wrecker. Bill McNamee has also since inspected the car and pronounced it a good buy.

Meanwhile, I have compared the fuel economy of our 508 and 308, both HDi’s with 6 speed auto gearboxes – quite surprisingly, the 508 has averaged 6.0 litres/100 km over the last couple of months, versus 6.1 litres/100 km in the 308. Both cars have done a mix of town and country travel, each including a trip down the coast. Not much in it, but given that the 508 is a much bigger car, its fuel economy is impressive. Either that or my wife, who drives the 308, is a lead-foot. Hmm…. probably best not to go there….

As usual our monthly club meeting will be held at the Raiders Weston Club, at 8 pm on Tuesday 26 July, with dinner and drinks from 7 pm. Hope to see you there.

Keep on Pugging,

Brad Pillans

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