Archive for the ‘ Fixy ’ Category

A New Adventure 

Last post I shared the news that I had done the unthinkable- bought a French car. Not just any French car, a 69.5 Citroen DS21. And in spite of appearances it does run and drive.  And best yet- the fellow Paul who I bought it from found it in a barn!


Somewhere in New Hampshire


Just a little bat guano

Looking tall in a high suspension setting

My friend Peter has one that he’s been working on since I’ve known him and I’ve always been fascinated by it. Everything is controlled through a centralized hydraulic system. No springs or shocks- pressurized spheres provide cushion for the adjustable olio pneumatic suspension.

 It needs full restoration. Lots of rust to contend with.  Wiring issues galore under the hood.

Beyond the complete lack of trunk, note the buckled side panels from being rear-ended. 


Time to strip it down and see what we have. the answer: lots of rust.

First big push with the new porta-power.

A very gratifying Sunday evening activity.

Moving to the sides to push. One side was a little more stuffed in.

Here’s the other side. With the ram and some hammer tapping it’s beginning to look pretty good.

Turns out that the top on this side was crunched in as well.

There, much better.

I just ordered a bunch of repair panels and picked up some sheet metal fabrication equipment so stay tuned for some reconstruction.


A clever trade

It eventually dawned on me that having 145 and 122 wagons and no dedicated winter car was a bit redundant. Even though I was determined to drive Sadie through the season after a thorough winterization (with the 145 as backup) it seemed like I needed to make a change. What could I do? I’ve had Sadie the 122 since 1997 so I could never sell her. And who would give me what the 145 is worth in the middle of winter? The answer was right before my eyes- trade the 145 to my friend Jesse for his hotrod  ’92 240 wagon and some cash.  

so long you handsome devil

 Jesse had lusted after the 145 for a while so it was an easy decision for him.   

Jim’s new whip

 Jesse put a ton of work in the 240:

  • 5-speed conversion
  • IPD exhaust
  • VX cam
  • Billie HDs all around
  • Front lowering springs
  • 780 Bertone v6 wheels with recent tires and a full set of Firestone Winterforce on steelies
  • New belts, T-belt & tensioner and front brakes
  • Recent head gasket (was leaking out the side)
  • Cloth interior with matching headrest pads and armrest
  • Power mirrors
  • Immuminated window switches from a 960
  • Big ’89 matte black tach
  • Clock and economy gauge
  • Blue cargo cover

All it needed was cosmetic TLC and a few odds and ends- polish, trim blackening, washer nozzles unplugged, and a bit of exhaust welding. I also chopped 1.5 coils off the stock rear springs to match the lowering springs out front because Jesse hadn’t gotten around to that yet.   
 This combo actually gives a great ride.    Minky and Ryan helped with the polishing. 

 And Minky and I tackled the blackening using Forever Black.  

   The yellowed headlights got a restoration and black eyebrows.  
 I’m very pleased to have a classy ride for the winter. But more importantly the 145 got a wonderful new home in Somerville. And with the cash I picked up a 69.5 Citroen DS21, but more on that in the next post.  


1800 Door Gaskets and Window Channels

Got my door gaskets and window channels done:

A busy space


On a towel at the kitchen table is an ideal workplace.


Before cutting the slot


Soapy water saved the day


Had to cut my own slot for this piece to go through. X-Acto 111 is my friend.


Before trimming


After trimming




Noting where the dum-dum is from the factory


A pretty non-scientific removal method

Removal and installation position


These got new channels. Theres a slight bend in it that you have to emulate with the new material.


Tools of the trade. Mostly used the blue one but the yellow hook was good for the front lower door where space us tight.

The gaskets fit into a channel and came around 3″ too long, trim to fit


Had to do a little rust work. That provided a nice clean channel to work with.

Rust work underway

December 1977

I adjusted the valves and made some other improvements to the GT last weekend and the car is better than ever. To celebrate, here’s an article from Tim’s collection:  


We determined that mine has a K cam. And it seems to pull like a B23. The shakedown motor turned out to be a gem.  

What is your favorite letter in the alphabet?


A polished tailpipe and new turbo muffler tops it off. IPD Sport Exhaust lives on.


How the heck did this get cracked? All better now.


Floating in the ether

Ebrake work on the 145. And some welding.  


Weekend Fun

Cars and Coffee at Larz Anderson on Saturday then all-day Volvo fun and camping through Sunday. My idea of a perfect weekend.

minky likes the exotics


hanging in my old car, Zack’s new car


M helping with horn installation


and with quad round swap


classic camping

not sure how it ran with the wrong cap and bad wires


eggs florentine and sweet potatoes for breakfast


Carrie inspecting her new acquisition


was in desperate need of a new hatch and wiring


and some welding on the strut anchor


and other odds and ends


mmmmm beer


bedliner coat #3


the 145 got trim rings polished too





new acquisition ready for action


The Minkanic Strikes Again

Last Friday and Saturday were nice here in Rhode Island so the Minkanic did a few projects on the ’69 145.  


 Cleaning and painting the B20 valve cover and oil cap was a good activity.  


 Came out great! He says that he wants the 145 for his first car. We will see.