[xj] Went to view a 1986 V12 VDP. Hilarity Ensues

I posted this morning about which colours are prefered. As
many guessed, I had a certain car in mind. This afternoon I
went to see it, and got a great lesson in ‘‘which jaguar NOT
to buy.’’

Before going to bed last, keen for my test drive today, I
thumbed through the JWM issue with the ‘‘V12 saloon buyer’s
guid’’ and made a checklist.

Out of 50 questions, this car got 42 of them wrong.
The more obvious/amusing/scary ones are listed here.

Body Rust? : Yes, you can put a clenched fist through
three different holes in the wings and wheel arches. You
could put a screwdriver through about 60% of the metal on
the car.
‘‘MCL’’ (vancouver dealer) trunk-badge notwithstanding, title
of car indicated ‘‘canadian import.’’ Likely the east-coast
of Newfoundland where the car was a ‘‘winter driver.’’

Steering: 6-8’’ of free play in the steering wheel, mandating
‘‘two hands on the wheel at all times’’ to steer. Discovered
the cap for the P/S fluid pump caught in the front subframe.
Re-filled fluid at gas station, replaced cap, steering
effort decreased, but free-play remained.
Interior: Perfect interior trim, many thousands spent in
2001 on new leather. Odd.
Wood: No. Most of it has flaked off or cracked.
Tires: Do not match. For that matter, neither do the
wheels. Three pepperpots and a newly re-finished kent. How
odd. Owner proudly indicates ‘‘brand new’’ tire on the front
left.
Engine bay: One cross-brace missing. One air filter
trumpet missing. At this point, I am not surprised anymore.
Headliner: Contrasts the pristine Doeskin leather.
Contrast is easy to see, as in places the headliner sags to
touch the leather.

Owner is surprised and disapointed to discover that the
bright-eyed ‘‘kid’’ knows a bit about jags. Seller’s
disapointment turns to dismay after witnessing a phone call
(on speed-dial, #4) to a prominent Vancouver jaguar mechanic
with whom the ‘‘kid’’ is apparently on a first name basis. A
technical discussion ensues regarding the effects of a bone-
dry power steering pump on performance and handling.
Consensus appears to be that the effect is wholly negative.

Asking price: $3000. Offered $1000 firm to make use of the
nearly new leather interior, and some minor bodywork parts
that are rusted on my ‘92 V12 and oddly pristine (but
original) on this junk heap.
Offer was scoffed at and countered with ‘’$2800, not a penny
less’’ and negotiations broke off at that point…

Despite all this, it was actually an enjoyable afternoon.
See you all at the Pitt Meadows Concours.

Cheers,
Chris
1992 V12 VDP–
Chris Los 1992 V12 Vanden Plas #51
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Good assessment Chris! The interior and other parts are worth what you
offered. By the way, the steering slop is just the rack bushings no doubt,
and the intake trumpet? Forget it. It’ll be great if they come back to you,
tail between legs.–
Alex
79xj6L SII (BRG + wires)
86xj6 SIII (Black)
61 Sprite MkII (Red)
Menlo Park, Calif.

thetopdogg wrote:
[clip]

Asking price: $3000. Offered $1000 firm to make use of the
nearly new leather interior, and some minor bodywork parts
that are rusted on my ‘92 V12 and oddly pristine (but
original) on this junk heap.
Offer was scoffed at and countered with ‘’$2800, not a penny
less’’ and negotiations broke off at that point…

Despite all this, it was actually an enjoyable afternoon.
See you all at the Pitt Meadows Concours.

===================================================
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In reply to a message from Cannara sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:

After seeing that there were mismatched tires I would have said 1
word - ‘‘goodbye’’ My time is too valuable for me to dilly dally with
nit wit sellers.–
Alyn
Seattle WA, United States
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In reply to a message from Alyn sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:

We all know mismatched tires (hopefully just of brand, not
size) are indicative of a cheap owner.
What, then, are we to surmise from mismatched WHEELS?

(Seriously, I’ve been puzzling over this for hours…)

:slight_smile:
-Chris–
The original message included these comments:

In reply to a message from Cannara sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:
After seeing that there were mismatched tires I would have said 1
word - ‘‘goodbye’’ My time is too valuable for me to dilly dally with
nit wit sellers.


Chris Los 1992 V12 Vanden Plas #51
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In reply to a message from thetopdogg sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:

The guy probably kerbed the bugger doing a boy-racer stunt
or bootlegger reverse or something with it, and had to run
fetch a new one from a boneyard someplace, eh? Although
you’d think he’d be able to just pull the spare out of the
trunk and use that one so at least the car would look right …

Solid gold! Actually, I wouldn’t mind having that car around
my place. I’d love a chance to stuff a May-head V12 with
matching rev counter into mine, especially as my engine is
now firmly out of its time-between-overhauls zone (221,000
miles, baby)!

But not for three tons, though.

Cheers!

–Finn–
The original message included these comments:

What, then, are we to surmise from mismatched WHEELS?
(Seriously, I’ve been puzzling over this for hours…)


Black Series III, 1984, intact - blue '81 Lancia Beta Zagato
Corvallis, Ore., United States
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In reply to a message from Finn John sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:

If the car was in that condition, I can only imagine what the
drivetrain and mechanicals like!?..–
345 DeSoto
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In reply to a message from Finn John sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:

Hilarity:

I seem to recall a similar car on E Bay. I think it was in Florida!
May be the same car. It was a rust bucket of the first order and
also showed some hilarious repairs.

It seems to have lost some ground and gained some ground!
Got a new interior!! Lost two wheels and tires. Slid in the ice and
kerbed two times. I bet there is no spare in the boot.

Next winter, it will go to the junk yard for a tow!

Too bad! There was a much better car in Novato for about 3K!

Carl–
The original message included these comments:

The guy probably kerbed the bugger doing a boy-racer stunt
or bootlegger reverse or something with it, and had to run
fetch a new one from a boneyard someplace, eh? Although
you’d think he’d be able to just pull the spare out of the
trunk and use that one so at least the car would look right …
Solid gold! Actually, I wouldn’t mind having that car around
my place. I’d love a chance to stuff a May-head V12 with
matching rev counter into mine, especially as my engine is
now firmly out of its time-between-overhauls zone (221,000
miles, baby)!
But not for three tons, though.


Carl Hutchins
Walnut Creek, California, United States
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In reply to a message from thetopdogg sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:

I guess I’m a cheapskate then :slight_smile:

I always bought tires in pairs, but not necessarily the same
brand. Same ones on each axle, but I never bothered much
about all 4.–
The original message included these comments:

In reply to a message from Alyn sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:
We all know mismatched tires (hopefully just of brand, not
size) are indicative of a cheap owner.


Dave W 85 XJ6 VDP ‘Black Beauty’ 157K - Getting closer !!
Lansdale, PA, United States
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In reply to a message from 1985vdp sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:

My first car was a 1972 Datsun truck and I tried larger tires in
the rear for a while and it was fun. Currently, I always fit the
same brand and size tire on all wheels. And on my last three all-
wheel drive vehicles, I even go to the effort to buy a fifth alloy
wheel and employ a 5-tire rotation; VW Syncro Westfalia, Jeep Grand
Cherokee V8, and now a Honda Pilot. On the Jag, I wish I had
purchased 5 new tires since I now realize that the spare wheel is
of the same chrome plated quality as the other 4, and that way if
one tire is damaged beyond repair, I would not have to buy an
entire new set. Now if I ever buy a Porsche Boxster I’ll certainly
have different size tires on each axle.
Dave Harlan
72 XJ6 Triple Carbs - Quad Michelin Pilots P215/65
Kentfield, CA–
The original message included these comments:

I always bought tires in pairs, but not necessarily the same
brand. Same ones on each axle, but I never bothered much
about all 4.
Dave W 85 XJ6 VDP ‘Black Beauty’ 157K - Getting closer !!
Lansdale, PA, United States


David Harlan
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In reply to a message from thetopdogg sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:

Wow, Chris, I went and checked out the Ebay listing of that
car. Gorgeous. That’s a helluva lesson for us about how easy
it is to make a slab of tofu look like a rib-eye in the
pictures on Ebay. Yikes! I did notice there were no
side-angle shots of the whole car, where you could see the
wheels!

I guess we can all stop calling you ‘‘Easy Money’’ now. :slight_smile:

–Finn–
The original message included these comments:

Owner is surprised and disapointed to discover that the
bright-eyed ‘‘kid’’ knows a bit about jags. Seller’s
disapointment turns to dismay after witnessing a phone call
(on speed-dial, #4) to a prominent Vancouver jaguar mechanic
with whom the ‘‘kid’’ is apparently on a first name basis. A


Black Series III, 1984, intact - blue '81 Lancia Beta Zagato
Corvallis, Ore., United States
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In reply to a message from David Harlan sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:

Dave,

If you want a 5-tire rotation you will ‘‘exclude’’ a growing range of
unidirectional tires from your options for the car. You can still
match the spare, but you could only include it’s rotation on one
side of the car. For the other side, it’s fine as a spare but you
wouldn’t want to leave it there.

Ken–
The original message included these comments:

My first car was a 1972 Datsun truck and I tried larger tires in
the rear for a while and it was fun. Currently, I always fit the
same brand and size tire on all wheels. And on my last three all-
wheel drive vehicles, I even go to the effort to buy a fifth alloy
wheel and employ a 5-tire rotation; VW Syncro Westfalia, Jeep Grand
Cherokee V8, and now a Honda Pilot. On the Jag, I wish I had
purchased 5 new tires since I now realize that the spare wheel is
of the same chrome plated quality as the other 4, and that way if
one tire is damaged beyond repair, I would not have to buy an
entire new set. Now if I ever buy a Porsche Boxster I’ll certainly
have different size tires on each axle.


Ken Cantor, 1992 Series III V12 Vanden Plas
Edmonton/Alberta, Canada
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Aw, not to worry. We have 5 ‘unidirectionals’ on our Accord wagon and they’ve
been rotated at least 3 times. I’ve yet to notice the slightest difference in
wet traction or in wear. But, we don’t have real weather here. In any case,
manufacturers won’t make tires for average cars that are unsafe when
mismounted. I have no qualms ignoring ‘direction’.–
Alex
79xj6L SII (BRG + wires)
86xj6 SIII (Black)
61 Sprite MkII (Red)
Menlo Park, Calif.

cdnklc wrote:

In reply to a message from David Harlan sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:

Dave,

If you want a 5-tire rotation you will ‘‘exclude’’ a growing range of
unidirectional tires from your options for the car. You can still
match the spare, but you could only include it’s rotation on one
side of the car. For the other side, it’s fine as a spare but you
wouldn’t want to leave it there.

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1985vdp wrote:

In reply to a message from thetopdogg sent Sat 2 Jun 2007:

I guess I’m a cheapskate then :slight_smile:

I always bought tires in pairs, but not necessarily the same
brand. Same ones on each axle, but I never bothered much
about all 4.

As long as they have basically the same characteristics that’s fine by
me, Dave. When a change is due my new pair go to the rear the worn up
front…

Frank
xj6 85 Sov Europe (UK/NZ)===================================================
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In reply to a message from Frank Andersen sent Sun 3 Jun 2007:

That makes me curious now Frank. I always put the worn ones on the
rear and the new ones up front ?–
The original message included these comments:

As long as they have basically the same characteristics that’s fine by
me, Dave. When a change is due my new pair go to the rear the worn up
front…
Frank


Jim Legge '85 SIII XJ '96 LR Disco
Washington, DC, United States
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In reply to a message from James Legge sent Mon 4 Jun 2007:

It’s a complex issue James, and there is more than one point of
view depending on, err, your point of view, but…

The logic for putting good ones on the back is that there are tests
which formally support (i.e. can be used in court) the obvious
point that with worn front tyres the car understeers, and it does
so pretty gently and predictably. The thinking behind the advice to
put worn ones on the front is therefore that even the average
Mr/Mrs/Ms Cellphone Driver notices one day that something is not
quite right and it is likely this would happen before a big
accident, since you can usually recover from understeer with little
skill.

Any public body advocating putting worn tyres on the rear (my
personal preference) would have to be able to defend themselves
against Mr Contingency Fee claiming in court that their advice, not
his client’s idiocy, caused an accident. With the best tyres up
front, the car typically doesn’t understeer but instead when
stupidly/unknowingly/absent-mindedly pushed beyond the limit it may
oversteer. It may do so with little prior warning on previous
excursions near the limit of grip, and in a way which Ms Cellphone
was not only unable to correct - but indeed might exacerbate - by
lifting off in the turn.

We should all run with good tyres all the time of course, but my
contention (showing my bike background) is that you can live to
tell the tale if you only lose a rear, but lose your steering and
most of your braking too and you are in worse shape. I also
believe - and think this is incontrovertible - that whatever your
chances of going into a skid in a turn (which depend on many
different factors, some beyond the direct control of the driver)
you are absolutely stone-cold guaranteed to aquaplane if you go
faster on a motorway than your tyres can clear water - even on a
dead-straight road going the exact same speed as other traffic on
better tyres.

So for my money, the chances of a serious accident from any cause
are overall higher if you run your best tyres at the back, but
there is evidence to support the contrary view.

There is no evidence I’m aware of that tyre engineers or lawyers
put direction markings on for fun or that they are there for the
obedience of pedants. I am not an insurance agent looking to
minimise my company’s financial exposure. Nor am I a police or
civil accident investgator trying to apportion blame percentages in
a typically murky two-driver accident with mutually contradictory
stories from those involved. But if I were either, I suspect I
might regard the incorrect fitment of tyres as worthy of note in a
similar way to the fitment of incorrect tyres… so I would never
advocate this in public any more than I would talk of running a
bald spare.–
Peter Crespin 66E, 76 DD6 Coupe, 84 DD6, 85 XJS 5sp convert
Cambridge, United Kingdom
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Depends on whether you want a little oversteer or understeer around turns, and
which end you want to lose traction first in a little rain. whatever the
driver feels most competent with!–
Alex
79xj6L SII (BRG + wires)
86xj6 SIII (Black)
61 Sprite MkII (Red)
Menlo Park, Calif.

James Legge wrote:

In reply to a message from Frank Andersen sent Sun 3 Jun 2007:

That makes me curious now Frank. I always put the worn ones on the
rear and the new ones up front ?

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James Legge wrote:

In reply to a message from Frank Andersen sent Sun 3 Jun 2007:

That makes me curious now Frank. I always put the worn ones on the
rear and the new ones up front ?

Tastes differ, James - I want the best grip at the rear for a variety of
reasons…:slight_smile:

Frank
xj6 85 Sov Europe (UK/NZ)>The original message included these comments:

As long as they have basically the same characteristics that’s fine by
me, Dave. When a change is due my new pair go to the rear the worn up
front…

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