June 2014


The Subaru has been throwing P0409 errors since the weekend. Engine warning lamp is on, and the Dynamic Vehicle Control is disabled, which in turn disables the cruise control function. Using the Android Torque software on my phone, and my Bluetooth ODBII adaptor, I'm able to read and then clear the codes. But they keep coming back when I restart the engine. Doing a bit of digging on Google reveals next to nothing on the subject. So I looked on the UKLegacy forums, and found a link to a site that hosts all the service manuals for the Legacy Diesel engine. After a while, I found a section that explains that the P0409 error is caused by the EGR valve, not moving when the ECU sends it a command. An optical sensor on the valve returns the valve position. So when ECU sends 45 pulses to open the valve 45 degrees, and the optical sensor returns 45 pulses, the ECU knows that the valve has opened 45 degrees. In my case, the EGR valve is either stuck, or the cable from the EGR is broken, and the ECU isn't getting the feedback it is looking for. At the weekend, I shall remove the valve, give it a clean, and see if the fault goes away.


Just celebrated 6 months in the new house, how time flies. I still think there is scope for extending the garage or at least building a workshop on the side. But there are other priorities at the moment and this year is about getting the house in order, and keeping the costs down to an acceptable level. Saying that, there is a round of Time Attack in August, that I'm quite tempted to enter. For Cadwell, they are running a Historic Class, and my Fiesta looks like it would be eligible. I've just sent my Prescott Hillclimb report off to Retro Ford Magazine, and couldn't provide any photographs from the event. Not one picture of the Fiesta being driven up the hill. Its not the sort of thing you could make a living from, taking event photographs, and I guess thats the problem. Some events are catered for, but the prices for a digital image are upwards of £10, which puts a lot of people off buying them. If they were a couple of quid, then yes, you'd sell a lot more. But its not the kind of thing you could make a living from.


Here are the results from the Resultsman website for Saturday. Comparing my 64ft times with others, I was around .5s slower than the rest, which shows how little grip the tyres generated off the line, even with the granny start technique.


I had a really enjoyable day on Saturday at the world famous Prescott Hillclimb. We had a total of 5 runs up the hill, two practice and three timed runs, and I struggled for grip with the Dunlop slicks, which made for an interesting day to say the least. Gradually I reduced the tyre pressures, until I arrived at 18PSI Front and 16PSI Rear, and ended up with a car that would go round corners, but getting the power down and stopping, still proved a challenge. I ran 59 on my first practice, then a 54, followed in the afternoon by a 53, 52 and finally a 51, which put me 2 seconds behind Graham Millar's Mk2 Escort, but a handful of seconds ahead of Steve Wrights Mk1 Escort Zetec. I know where I was losing time, most notably on the long left hander after the start, which rewarded the brave, and I didnt have the confidence in the rear end to push it round that corner. Launching was quite difficult too. We werent allowed to warm our tyres before the start, just give them a quick spin to clean them. So to get her off the line I used the granny start technique of getting it rolling, then opening the throttle whilst trying to avoid wheelspin in 1st and 2nd gears. Not complaining though, I needed to try the slicks, which were very dirty and once they were softened I was at least closing the gap on Graham towards the end of the day. So congratulations to Longton and District Car Club, for an excellent event. Lots of red flags during the day still didn't prevent a 5th run, and there were plenty of PB's broken by those competitors who stayed on the Tarmac.

The Picasa photo album is here:
Prescott June 2014

My fastest run is shown below.


Sprayed the splitter with red paint last night, having first sanded down the areas where the paint had cracked. Also stuck the numbers to the rear wing, so almost ready for Prescott on Saturday.
Splitter with red paint applied


Over the weekend I've modified the front air-dam/splitter, to smooth off the ends where the splitter met the wheel arch extensions. Last night I sprayed filler primer on, which gave the splitter an odd appearance. The primer reacted with the paint underneath in several places, but now its dried, it looks easy enough to smooth off again. So tonight I'll sand the yellow primer down, and spray it with Ford Sunburst Red.
Splitter with filler primer applied


Both the rear axle spacers have been swapped for 10mm spacers, which has reduced the overall track at the rear by 24mm, or approx. 1" I've ordered the numbers for the car for Saturday, and set myself a task of respraying the front air-dam as it was looking decidedly tired after two years on the car.
At Prescott I'm in the same class as Graham Millar's Mk2 Escort plus a Mk1 1800 Escort, with a Tiga thrown in for good measure. Should be good.


What a brilliant, brilliant show Classic Ford was this year. I've never seen it so busy, and sunshine and high temperatures certainly increased the turn out. I got there for 7am, nice and early to beat the queues, which by 10am were approx. 2hrs and 3miles long. Parked next to Zaks Fiesturd (2.0 Zetec turbo with exhaust manifold over the gearbox), then Ade turned up with his blue Mk2, and soon we were bursting at the seams with Fiesta's, Escorts, leaving barely enough room for the BBQ at lunch time. I didn't run the strip. I didn't want to find out if these wheels wanted to part company with the car over 100mph, so instead spent the time chatting, taking photos, and just enjoying the show. The queue to get out was just as long as it was to get in. I loaded the Fiesta up and joined the queue at 5pm, eventually leaving Santa Pod at 6:10pm. But then that's the only down side to running events at the Pod.
Classic Ford 2014