Monday, February 28, 2005

I haven't written anything for a whole week. Did the usual swimming twice this week. Also bought a new wooly hat, board sticker and some lovely warm gloves. And while Sauze has very little snow it is apparently going to be -37 deg c including the wind chill for Tuesday. Now thats cold, in fact too cold to snow! Brrr.!

I have been watching a great deal of Only Fools and Horses as I ordered five of the DVD's at half price. So the collection is starting to catch up with my carry on collection, of which I think there is only 2 more to come!

Here are the ones I've had - only one left to watch:

On top of the above DVD's I've got plenty of films to watch. Firstly the Village. Which as I've seen it at the cinema and seen the twist at the end may think was a funny one to get but hey I enjoy the erie film.

And I enjouyed 50 first dates a lot. A bit of girly film but I enjoy films in with Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore. So to have them both in the same film is a joy. Its full of laughs, romance and is dead entertaining. Adam Sandler reminds me a bit of Sean Connery in that he always plays the characters the same. Ok so he hasn't got that accent but I'm sure you know what I mean if you have seen enough of his films.

And on Sunday I found time to watch 40 days and 40 nights. Funny yes but not a great film just entertaining. I thought I'd catch the two girls kisses but obvously not so you'll either have to do with the picture below or go and rent it to find out how far they go!

On top of this I have taken my brother to look at some cars. Notably we ended up in two Lexus IS 200. An auto version and a manaul one. Got to be honest I would have liked the blue one myself. But I'll put up with my Cav for a while longer. And besides its got a clean engine now as I cleaned it with the jet wash on Saturday.

Sunday I sepnt some time with Big-L discsussing Our Ireland Tour which is coming up fast. It would appear this si how it going although we have to decide what to do inbetween:

Thursday night head to Holyhead by 8:30 for ferry leaving at 9:30! Stay in Dublin.
Friday - Stay In Cork (in luxary hotel I think I have booked)
Saturday - A day and another night in Cork
Sunday night - Stay in Hotel in Galaway.
Monday - up to the Giants Causeway and back down to Belfast for a night there.
Tuesday - Tour of Belfast - Catch ferry from Dun Laghgo to Holyhead at 5pm.

Another fly by night tour then I guess. I'm trying to read my book ASAP.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Saturday I went out to the Whacky. Along came Mrs Greenie and the troublesome two some. Mind they were very excited about.

Right to thte top they went.

Before they were refulled for some more acitivtes ie going home.

That night went up Codsall to see Greg and Diane who are now engaged and Gaz and Sarah. We spent the whole night in the Station pub and by George did time fly by. Before you knew it it was Sunday morning and time to Watch the Rainbow play. Luckily it was cancelled so that was the end of that.

Instead me and Les planed our next extensive tour. The Irish Tour. And we boked a ferry from Holyhead To Dan Laoghaire for Thursday before Easter and returning on the Tuesday night. Didn't use the usual people I book with but instead as they were offering more sensible times! All we have got to do now is some research into what we want to see in four and half days!

I have finaly got round to starting the web site, although there is still plenty to do on it.

Apperntly we are having a cold spell this week with some snow. I however have got in a bit of practice with my snowboard last night at the snowdome before my Italian snowboarding holiday. Although there hasn't been any snow fall in the resort since the 23rd February. This was the view tonight as I left work in Birmingham and...

This veiw just before I got home.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Snow News for Italy - last updated on 17 February 2005
Despite no new snow in many areas of Italy, there has been some exceptional snow making efforts in many resorts. The pistes are still in very good condition in Alagna (5/120cm), although the off-piste is not good, and there is a similar story in Cortina (50/100cm) and Selva Gardena (). Cervinia (100/140cm) has been very cold recently and the slopes are pretty hard packed. The snow making has been exceptional in Sauze d’Oulx (). Some links in the Milky Way are closed but the extensive snow making means there are still some great riding conditions to be enjoyed. Livigno (49/136cm) has some good slopes at the moment after new snow earlier this week.

Conditions Sun
Current weather: Sun
Current temperature: -6°C
Tomorrow's weather: Snow showers
Hazy sunshine, some clouds

Thursday, February 17, 2005

I managed to finish the replacment of my clutch on my cavalier 1.7 TD (Izusu) on Modnay night. It took me near enough or perhaps over 16 hours. Now though it goes like a dream.

1. Disconnect battery.

2. Remove battery.

3. Remove hoses on top of the engine between engine and turbo.

4. Loosen the wheel bolts.

5. Jack both sides of car up, then lower onto axle stands.

6. Remove Wheels.

7. Remove both clutch cover plates from transmission.

8. Remove bolts that are in position at 10 to and 10 past from engine to transmission.

9. Replace these bolts with ones that are far too long. (This will help keep the transmission and engine aligned throughout the procedure).

10. From the front passenger side wheel arch, remove the gearbox cover. Expect transmission fluid to fall out. Top bolts are hard to get at – use a socket wrench with narrow diameter extension bar.

11. Remove gasket and clean both the cover and gearbox faces WITHOUT getting debris into gearbox.

12. Remove circlip from input shaft end. (maybe tight on).

13. Remove circlip from inside the screw face of the input shaft.

14. Using a 12-sided male spline socket, remove input shaft cover screw.

15. Using a pulling tool – screw into input shaft end.

16. Slowly pull the input shaft out. Note this could be difficult and a ‘slide hammer type pull tool’ maybe required. DO NOT force input shaft out.

17. Extract input shaft as far as possible.

18. Cover transmission gears with plastic bag to keep dirt out. (Not the cover plate you have just taken off)

19. On the passenger side undo the anti roll-bar bush. It will be held on with two nuts. Use lots and lots of WD70 otherwise these are prone to snapping due to seized nuts.

20. Break the ball joint and pull free. This will allow extra movement for the transmission latter.

21. Remove starter motor wiring from starter motor.

22. Remove starter motor.

23. Place jack with wooden block on under engine sump.

24. Place jack with wooden block on under transmission sump.

25. Remove remaining bolts between engine / transmission. EXCEPT the two longer bolts you have put in.

26. Undo from the bottom of the car the two rear engine mounting nuts & washers.

27. Remove from passenger engine mounting completely.

28. Jack both engine and transmission up so that the transmission side is now higher than the engine. i.e. sloped. ENSURE INSIDE ENGINE BAY NOTHING CLASHES WHEN DOING THIS. The transmission will hit the bottom of the chassis if you go too high.

29. The rear engine mounting stubs should have come out the subframe. If not the engine and transmission are not high enough yet and step 30 can not be done.

30. With a crow bar gently prise the transmission from the engine. Start at bottom of transmission with a helping hand for the top.

31. Keep moving the transmission to the right as far as possible until the transmission clashes with chassis.

32. To move the transmission far enough for a large enough gap to get the clutch out, drop the engine and transmission slightly.

33. Prise the transmission as far to the right as possible. It should now just go a little further under the chassis. You should have enough of a gap to get the clutch out when you can see the flywheel to the left of the transmission case.

34. Rotate the flywheel round and look for the notch that will appear in only one place on the clutch cover. Mark on the flywheel with chalk where this notch is.

35. Remove the clutch cover plate bolts. There are six bolts and it is best to undo them all evenly bit by bit.

36. The clutch cover should be removed.

37. Watch out for the friction disk which will follow.

38. Remove clutch cable from arm.

39. To aid replacement of the thrust release bearing, shine a torch up and note how it is fitted. Then remove the thrust release bearing by undoing the fork retention nut and the pulling fully forward the bearing. Twist slightly and it should come off in your hand.

40. Clean clutch area and ensure no oil is present.

41. Fit new thrust release bearing by positioning the bearing against the fork in the correct position and gently twisting the bearing onto the fork. If correctly positioned it will go on easily. Remember to grease the inside of the thrust bearing with the grease that should have been supplied with the clutch.

42. Tighten up the fork retention nut.

43. To replace new clutch a very short centring tool must be made up. This can be constructed from a M8 bolt with the head cut off to give a 60mm long bar. Wrap insulation tape around in two places so that it fits snugly through the new friction disc and into the nylon bush in the flywheel.

44. Place tool into friction disc and ease into position with the other end in the nylon bush. It should balance in there. If the nylon bush is too ‘free’ and drops out then either replace the nylon bush or if no nylon bush is available I have before now dabbed a TINY spot of super glue on it to hold it in position.

45. Gently move up the clutch cover and align the notch with the chalk mark making sure you do not knock the friction disc.

46. When in position tight with 3 screws at first.

47. Now the centring tool is to be removed. Do this using a powerful magnet and then pull out with fingers.

48. Reposition transmission to engine. There is a location dowel on the front side of the engine / gearbox to align.

49. Tighten with one bolt either side.

50. Reconnect the clutch cable to the arm but leave loose.

51. It is now time to see if the input shaft will relocate through the friction disc and into the nylon bush in the flywheel.

52. With the aid of some help, have them carefully sit in the car ready to gently push the clutch pedal down.

53. Push the input shaft gently into the transmission. Most likely it will get to the friction disk and not go in. Gently wiggle it around and keep pushing.

54. If it does not go in, get the person in the car to slowly push the clutch pedal down. This will release the clutch plate allowing it to move slightly. If the pedal is put to the floor the clutch plate will move too much due to gravity and then its time to take it back off and re-centre. So go slowly and it will go in. (not if the clutch cable is too loose you may have to tighten it enough to allow enough ‘action’ to free the friction disc.)

55. You will most likely find the input shaft goes in but not all the way. It will have got as far as the nylon bush,.but entered it. Here some gentle persuasion may be required. Note heavy or light blows with a mallet will damage the transmission.

56. Once inserted all the way, replace input shaft cover screw, inner circlip and outercirclip.

57. Insert remaining bolts between engine and transmission.

58. Remove longer bolts that were put in for alignment purposes.

59. Lower engine and transmission so that the rear engine mounting studs go into their holes. Use a crow bar or large flat screw driver to encourage them.

60. Before putting on front engine mounting adjust clutch cable so that the clutch pedal is 4mm above the brake pedal.

61. Install front engine mounting.

62. Put the nuts onto the studs of the rear engine mounting.

63. Lower engine and transmission so it now sits on mountings and remove jacks.

64. Put the transmission cover back on either using a gasket or blue gasket sealing compound (do not get this in gears).

65. Put the ball joint back into socket and do up nut, remembering to replace split pin.

66. Put the anitrollbar link back on and lock with second nut.

67. Replace the two clutch inspection covers.

68. Replace the starter motor.

69. Replace the starter motor wiring.

70. Replace battery and connect.

71. Put road wheel back on.

72. Lift car off axle stands and lower to floor.

73. Try the car out.

As you can see this is the old cluth which did not wear out but failed. You'll notice that the metal splines between the friction material and the center hub have all broken!

Once this was done I put in some greased lightening! I'll trail it and do a small web page like that green pilot thing that did sod all.

While I'm on about my motor I found this web page which is most exciting and hopefully most useful.

Oh and I managed to change the name on this!

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Friday night me and Big-L headed up town and went to Mudoons. A few bottles of russian lager later we were prepared to brave the Varisty (Wolverhampton). Oddly I was tried to be served by 3 people within a mintue of hanging around the bar. Now this is what I expct rather than its usual 15 mintues wait. We come here as The Third Day were plaing and it was ment to be a hell of a gig. We'd made it in time not only to see them but an Indie Rock band just before who also seemed to have some talent.

Once the gig was over it was a change from Cheekies and we headed down to Extra. The barman did not seem to remember he had barred Neil Allen ad so all was fine. I was not meant to be staying all night but one beer lead to another until it was closing time. At this point I vacated and headed to Kebab King in broad Street for some very tasty food. One nan, one chips with extra extra chilli sauce and a peice of chicken. A couple of cabs home and hello bed. Unfortunatley sleep did not go too well as three times in the night I was awaked obrutly by having cramp in my leg. The muscle still hurts now!

Saturday and I was getting up to do my clutch. A present all I want to say is the old one is out and I've got to put the new one in. And it was like the Artic out there yesterday, with that wid and all. This means I'm not making the footie game this morning but braving the Artic weather under my motor.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Whey hey someone has signed the circle line pub crawl guest book. first one for some time.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Can't say anything outstanding has happened this week. Went swimming Tuesday and did 70 odd lengths and also on Thursday but only managed around 60 and it was a struggle. Thursday night my car broke down. Clutch went. Which when you conside the clutch when the first time at 90k it should really have been expected at 180K. However unlike the first time when it graduly got hard to put into gear when you had the pedal depressed the clutch bsaicaly instaintanously failed. It will be wonderfull to take it apart and see what has happened! Ok so maybe I'm not lokking forward to it as the Haynes manual does not cover the model of car I have and having followed the instrcution in it once for this proceddure no its a long agonsiing job I thought I would never do again on the car. But hey I'm never getting rid of it I guess. Well off up town to see Third day and have a drink for Paul and nippers birthday. Cheers and lets hope I don't drink too much.

Monday, February 07, 2005

I came home form poker night a whole twenty pence up. Not to be laughed at that twenty pence as it meant I wasn't down for a change! The next day I got up but felt awful. Four cans of larger and I get such a head ache? What is going on? I on the way home I called Big-L to see if he wanted to go out for a beer. It was going to be one of those nights where the first pint decided on whether or not I would be up for staying out. He advised though that because the Wolves were playing at home tonight that all other life was put on hold. I question why a Friday night and apparently it's down to Sky? I agreed to meet him at 9:20pm but by 8pm I was too tired to go. It was around this point that I had fish and chips from the chippy. A relevant point as this was the first time since my holiday I'd had chips (and chip shop chips are ok to have). So I curled up in bed and had an early night. Which was probably a good thing as on Saturday I was off to Tom's 3rd Birthday. As soon as I got up I txt Sara for the time to meet at the Wacky! No reply. Then Big-L called. I'll be round to collect you we need to be there by 10am! Crickey.

We arrived at the Wacky at the Rock Hotel and luckily the kids were already playing. Me and Big-L got refused blue slushes! It had been a while since I'd had a blue tongue. We headed down stairs a bit later when the kids were having their Wacky meal. We got a couple of pints and sat down with some others who wanted a break from the kids.

When it had died down we where off to the Newhampton Arms with Greenie, Sara, Martin, Marg, Martin and Cheryal. and what a good move this was as on the menu was 'real home made chips', which I got confirmed with the barmaid before ordering steak and chips. God it was divine! Big-L took me home and said he would call me later after he'd done some house work.

It wasn't that much later actually when he called, desperate to go up town on the 6:20 bus. Okay dokey I thought and so meet him on the bus. We had a few in the Hogg's Head while watching the rugby. From here we went to the Garage (Mundoons). We had come here as Big-L wanted me to try some of there bright orange scrumpy, which apparently tastes great. We ordered a couple of pints and watched as the orange stuff dribble out of the cask. In fact these two pints finished the cask off. It really was a nice drink. High in alcohol, high in colour, and nice tasting - no after taste like most. Martin soon joined us and then Greenie turned up. Then Greenie got a call asking him why he'd gone off with the car keys. He was about to go home to take the car keys back when we pointed out that the bus was at least in 30 minutes time so he might as well wait. We changed drinks to the Russian larger - lovely and watched Greenie go out side for another telephone conversation. Gaz and Sarah joined us and the so did the less spotted Beardy!

We moved onto the Passada where I took a bottle of Russian lager.

A few more pints lead to a decision to go to Bast Off. But Greenie was too keen on the idea.

Then he had a brain wave and left Sara a message that he had missed the bus and would get a taxi "later". He was coming clubbin!

A quick visit to the nearest ATM and we where in The Little Civic to get some tickets and a pint. Erm no tickets left and the que was long outside. We stayed a while.

Once inside Blast Off I took Big-L to the Glass Room Bar. Somewhere he reckoned he'd never seen before!

Some boogieing was done and eventually, Sarah, Gaz, Greenie and me left to go for a curry at the Nikalash in School Street. I can recall having a Madras which wasn't on the menu and stopping them emptying the balti dish onto a plate. eventually it was time to go home!

Now Big-L came round about 10ish in the morning and did I fell rough. Lack of sleep I guess. Off we went in his white van to watch the footie. The cool morning air was refreshing and soon made me feel much better. Matt Poade was substituted during the game which upset him some what and Bill came over to me to say he liked the web site but what had Matt done to me to make me say I what I had in his profile. After the match it was up the Rainbow to beat Big-L two games to one at pool.

Not much happened after that. Arrangements were made for everyone to be up town this coming Friday night and a cheekies session to celebrate Steve's birthday, so here comes more alcohol abuse.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Last Friday I headed up to Birmingham to some some friends I used to work with and still enjoy there company. I was first shocked that an evening return to Birmingham has now dropped to only 1:55! We were going to start in the Old Joint Stock but when I got there I found it was closed. Picking up my phone from my pocket I noticed I had a message. They too had found the pub closed and had moved to Bennett's. Luckily although I'd never been there before it was just round the corner. I pint in there and we were off for a Tia meal that was booked at The Tai Orchard. Lovely meal but I still prefer the one in Wolvo myself. From there we headed to Brindley place and I decided to stay late and try and catch a late train from London.

Great idea but in practice it was not so successful. In fact when I got to the station there was nothing on the boards. So I went ad asked at the reception. The lady there informed me that there was no late trains to Wolverhampton on a Friday only Saturday. This was surely information the wrong way round. Anyway I arranged to be collected from the station but being warm thought I would hang around talking to strangers, one of which wanted to get to Carlisle. Good luck was my advise. Eventually a guard and station staff came and talked to me. The chap asked where I wanted to go and I told him Wolvo. He than told me the next train was 5:30. The conversation went on for a bit but had the following in it and me being a bit tipsy I was argumentative. I know there are trains from London at 10:50, 11:50 and 12:50. It takes 2 hours for the train to get to Birmingham and they all terminate at Wolvo so I know there are trains. eventually after putting up with me a bit longer he eventually cracked and told me 'that these late trains do exist but they are no longer advertised or displayed on the boards. He wasn't allow to tell me about them, what time they are due or what platform they where going to appear on. This was because they are now classed as 'drop downs' only and not pick ups. This just infuriated me into a load of what the f*Ck is going on with the rail system now! You run trains but don't let people get on them. This could SURELY only happen in Britian. He finally asked if I had a ticket, which I did and therefore he would allow to stay in the station. It was pritty obvious he was letting me get one of these trains if I could work out which platform it would be on. Mind I didn't really know the times but I'll be getting a London to Wolverhampton time table for my next late night visit to Brum. As it was I went for a piss, and there was no way I was paying twenty pence so I climbed over the barrier. That British Rail for you or what ever they want to call themselves.

Saturday I got up about 11am. Collected my brother and went to Wolvo. I went and got my hair cut while leaving him in the Quadrant lounge. I decided that I wasn't going to have my hair short, so I asked for the exact opposite of what Mat Poade asked for last time he visited the barbars. Yep I asked for it not to be cut, just tied up. She laughed but new what I meant. After I went looking for a new coat. Tried on loads but never really found what I was looking for, although I wasn't looking for anything in particular, I just new that if I found what I was looking for I'd know I'd found it. Anyway headed back home and later to my Uncle Adrians for a pheasant supper as today was the last day for pheasant shooting and it is celebrated by cooking many a pheasant and eating it. Yummy pheasant.

Sunday and Big-L came round to watch a very very cold Rainbow Football game. It seemed to go on forever. A quick pint up the pub and I was then back home. I finished of the Avoriaz photos and web page hence you can see them.

Sunday night was movie night and tonight on the BIG screen was Team America. Marginaly amusing but I wouldn't watch it ever again! I think the point is short and sweetly made there.

It's come to point where my 20Gb and 40Gb drives are almost full, so a quick visit to SVP has come up trumps with an economically priced 160Gb Maxtor unit. Hopefully that will keep me going for a fair few years. I managed to remember this week that ER was on Monday channel 4 at 10pm. It was the episode where Doctor Corday has been sacked from her acting position because she was costing a fortune or so I heard the rumors.

Tuesday I went swimming and exceeded 60 lengths, for some odd reason I was full of energy, something not to be missed. Last night I watched another episode of Desperate House Wives followed by the first 3 quarters of predator. I always think the last bit of that film gets a tab boring. Anyway poker night tonight and I'm prepared to lose hundreds of pounds. Oh yeah I've given up chips unless they are proper thick BRITISH CHIPS. I've done well so far. I haven't had a single one since coming back off holiday.


"Nowhere Near The End Of the Rainbow"
contains information that is non-accurate, made up and in some cases just down right lies. Anything in this blogg may be based on true fiction but to help dramatise it, some items may have been embellished. Some names are made up, others are not and any that are familar to yours just are.





 Near The End Of The Rainbow

An account of something that may one day turn out to be wonderful.......