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2CVGB News article – SPOG January 2018

Happy Birthday 2cvGB with us becoming forty years old in 2018 although the actual date for celebration is 25th February. On that day back in 1978 our Club held its first meeting in Leamington Spa where committee members were appointed and membership subscriptions began. The first 2cvGB News appeared in April 1978 although I didn’t personally join the Club until 1986 despite having owned a 2cv from new since 1976. That particular car rapidly fell to bits on me and so I passed it on.  However I missed this car so much I quickly bought another one likewise joining the Club to ensure that such neglect and stupidity would never happen again. It hasn’t.

Local Group leadership and committee participation have since followed with now some of us TROY folk joining the York Historic Vehicle Group, another organisation celebrating its fortieth birthday. Our involvement includes “mixing it” with fellow Classic Cars on Drive it Day, likewise proudly displaying our vehicles at the annual Show on the Knavesmire, York’s famous Horse Racing Circuit.

At a recent YHVG Meeting a wonderful fellow called Peter came up to me after seeing my ‘81 2cv drummer parked outside the pub where we meet.  “I’ve always wanted one of those cars,” Peter said, indeed he had just bought one, a fully restored D reg red Special. Peter is a spritely 92 year old and loves driving his new acquisition similarly joining 2cvGB. Bless him.  Peter did ask me recently about greasing the knife edges on his car. He said he got down underneath to take a look but then couldn’t get up again. I know that feeling only too well although compared to him I’m a mere “spring chicken”.  Peter’s enthusiasm for his 2cv is great to see, a lesson for us all as time marches on.

Happy New Year to you, perhaps time for some early spring cleaning? Over the years I’ve noticed that sun visors albeit seldom used in this country, still become grubby. Consequently I undo the two 8 mm headed bolts holding each sun visor to the windscreen surround and remove this shade to work on elsewhere.  Remember the sun visor fixing clamp also holds down the front edge of the roof, so this procedure best avoided for obvious reasons if the car is sat outside in windy conditions.

I’ve found that the grey plastic covering of a sun visor does seem to clean up nicely with a little cellulose thinners carefully using an old tooth brush to get into all the nooks and crannies of the uneven surface. I then rinse off this solvent with soapy water. However the vertical swivel mechanism of the later 2cv type visor with the plastic bracket is often stiff/seized and trying to overcome such rigidity with force inside the car often breaks the whole thing. With the sun visor removed from the vehicle I stand it propped up so that anti-seize liquid can be poured into this housing filling it. After a few days this liquid tends to seep through the swivel mechanism so that it appears below it. The sun visor can then be gently manually encouraged to spin round on its vertical axis. Once it starts to move it can be rotated several times so that the anti-seize liquid has reached everywhere thereby reducing stiffness and ultimately the risk of breakage.

Next I am indebted to Philip Clark of the Yorkshire Coasters for giving me a break-down of Citroen part numbers with reference to the two variations of front drum brakes on our cars plus the rears. With regard to the 200 mm (2cv4, 2cv6,Dyane 4 & AZU)  and 220 mm (Dyane6, Ami, AK400) diameter front drum brakes there are some interesting differences which, if you’re trying to fit the wrong part, could prove difficult.  Firstly though, please note the heavier spring fitted between the shoes in the larger front brake drum. Citroen never manufactured/fitted anything without good reason although some front brake shoe fitting kits available from the trade do not seem to have recognised this fact.

The steady pin for the 220 mm system is also different being some 3 mm longer than those used within the 200 mm diameter brake drums. That’s not because the shoes in the larger system have a bigger diameter, but due to the friction surface being wider measuring 44 mm across compared to the 35 mm width of the smaller shoes.  I doubt very much if the shorter steady pin will fit the bigger system, indeed good luck if you try it.

SPOG supplies the various eccentrics used within all systems, our products from stainless steel being meant to resist corrosion and seizure. Again please note the deeper eccentrics for use within the 220 mm front drum brake system compared to the 200 mm set up. Likewise fitting the wrong part here will not work either.

And lastly I turn to the steady pin/spring cap. Original caps on our cars all had two little holes in them so that they could be pushed over the steady pin compressing the spring underneath.  And then rotated to lock into position using a pair of straight circlip pliers or whatever takes your fancy. I have had a screw-driver modified to have cylindrical block at the end with two pins protruding. These pins locate in the holes of the cup in order to do the necessary.

However all replacement cups available from the trade these days have no such holes making all my various tools totally redundant. Not quite. Recently I was looking over the equipment for sale in a local engineering shop and saw the black handled tool as pictured. Clever I thought and bought it.  At the business end it has a head with internal teeth being designed to hold the cup firmly likewise gripping it for the rotation/locking procedure. It wasn’t a vast sum of money and therefore if I do have to fit replacement cups with no positioning holes, I do now have the necessary tool for the job …. allegedly.

David Eden   SPOGman.