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Everything posted by fresco1

  1. BMW 320d M Sport

    Well the GTI was a definite favourite car, although it was followed by a few £1,000 wrecks for parking at the train station! The CLK mostly lives in the garage waiting for the sun. Went for the BMW based on economy, and have to say I am very pleased. Feels a bit like the GTI in terms of ride and handling, although the BMW clearly has the edge. So far - love it! But black cars are a hobby, not a colour! So will be spending plenty of time washing and waxing over the coming months no doubt - armed with info from the Cleaning forum as ever! Enjoyed reading your review of yours, BTW!
  2. BMW 320d M Sport

    Hi, I've been over on the VW GTI forum for a bit although lurking rather than posting in recent months. I no longer have the GTI, instead I've upgraded to a MB CLK Cabrio AMG and now a 2010 BMW 320d M Sport as my daily drive. Picked it up last Saturday from the stealer, so as the weather was fine enough today I managed to give it a detail. Have a range of products,, but today went a bit old school and opted for Auto Glym shampoo / Ultra Deep Shine / Ultra Gloss Protection / Meguiers Tyre Gel / Auto Glym Leather Cleaner. Took a lot of advice from the BMW forum before buying it, so thought I would post a pic as a way of saying thanks! Thanks for looking.
  3. Bye bye, GTI ... :(

    I've had my GTI for 3 years and 10 months, from new. But sadly, the time finally arrived to part company after months of wondering if I should just keep it forever! Despite having various cars in my time, I can honestly say the GTI has been the most fun, most entertaining of the lot - and for the money, an absolute bargain for what it is capable of. It was the hardest motoring decision of my (driving!) life - to get rid of it. But I don't use it anymore, and it sits in my garage for weeks on end, completely loved and detailed to perfection. Just a waste, and Mrs. Fresco has been on at me for ages to get rid of it. She finally won. I did consider a Mk 6, but I don't feel it had enough over the 5 to tempt me. Maybe the 7, when it comes out?! Anyway, the GTI is now gone, at Mrs. Fresco's request. But I did buy something else to replace it, though! Mercedes CLK AMG cabriolet!! Can't wait for Saturday when I pick that one up! )
  4. Bye bye, GTI ... :(

    Yep, will get some pics when the sun is out and the roof down! Attached is a generic shot of the same car - think mine has slightly different wheels but no real difference otherwise. Will be sad to see the GTI go, but have been sensible (sort of) - bought a diesel Skoda as the daily driver, as can't leave a decent car in an NHS staff car-park (I work at about 4 different hospitals per week, usually running late and likely to park badly - i.e. side torn out badly!). So it will be Skoda 5 days a week, and MB AMG for 2 ... ! Just downloading music for the pickup - checked out Google's list of top convertible driving music, and aside from my own list and tastes have gone for the alledged #1 song for convertibles: Golden Earring's 'Radar Love' - not normally my taste, but sod it I'll give it a go!! Er, as the GTI was handed in wearing its relatively new winter tyres, I have 4 good Pilot Sport 2's - 2 of which were about 6 months old and have covered c. 2000 miles - think an ad is needed!!
  5. Greetings, I have been absent for some time - still have the GTI, not interested in getting rid of it, especially since Top Gear rated it 2nd (behind a Lambo) in their All Time top list!! Anyway .. After extensive debate, I have in the last fortnight started my GTI on winter tyres. It normally runs PS2's, which are not rated (as I understand it) below 7 celcius. I therefore had Vredestain Wintrac Extreme's put on for winter. Couldn't have been better timing! In short, they really should be considered essential for winter driving. They are rated for extreme wet, ice and snow. Appreciate they don't last too long on warm tarmac, but will be swapping back to the PS2's in March anyway. The Vredestein's are much better for traction in winter, improved steering, acceleration (even on compacted snow, doesn't often activate ASR), and braking. They also have a lip / rim protector, to protect my otherwise immaculate Monza II's from any idiot-damage. They have proved excellent for traction up slippy slopes where other cars definitely can't get any grip and are wheel-spinning or sliding backward. Confident at 60mph on motorway with severe ice and extended patches of snow creeping off the hard-shoulder. I haven't tried them at higher speeds as yet. Quieter than PS2's, which was interesting. I had debated this winter / summer swap for a time, and am very glad I have done so. I would recommend them to any GTI owners. Note the tyre is otherwse exactly the same spec (225/40/R18) so is basically a tyre brand choice, not a modification. Am using original alloys etc, nothing changed there. £550 or so, mobile fitted, for 4.
  6. GTI on Vredestein Wintrac Extremes

    Don't forget that summer tyres do work from 7c upwards, but that's the minimum ... ! As we've all had -6c etc in recent weeks, don't be fololed into thinking 7c is suddenly summer - it ain't! I'm staying on winter tyres until the end of March, as winter tyres are also a preferable choice for heavy rain etc. And the PS2's are superb once it's consistantly above 10c .. !
  7. GTI on Vredestein Wintrac Extremes

    At the moment our road and driveway are compacted snow / ice. I had to move the cars about, so took my wife's Lexus (rear wheel drive, on Bridgestones I think) out. It took 1.5 hours to get it back in, plus the help of passers-by!! Meanwhile, to stop it getting damaged from the Lexus and it's zero-grip abilitites, I drove the GTI backwards up onto a mound of snow - not a bother, and it stayed parked with the back up a snow-hill basically! I even contemplated using the GTI to pull the Lexus about! Other noteable moments - there is a steep slope where my wife works, no-one (even a Range Rover) has made it up there this week. Okay this was the really hard one, but the GTI went up backwards but made it!! I was genuinely shocked! There clearly has to be a limit to the Vredestein's grip, but even today in Hampshire on otherwise slushy roads they are proving to be a revelation. Last year I did just under £2K worth of damage to the GTI (wheels and suspension) after a low-speed skid on black ice - for the sake of £550, there is now no-way I would do Oct - March without an approved winter tyre. If we still have the Lexus next winter, there is no question that they have to be on Winter's by October. Hope all this is helpful - am a convert, obviously!!
  8. GTI on Vredestein Wintrac Extremes

    Ouch! Just for the record, mine were supplied by Merityre in Farnham, fitted by a mobile fitter who came from London to Bagshot then Farnham and on to me (Hampshire). Have to say, they could not have been more helpful. The fitter himself also had a GTI in Tornado Red, and greeted me (I came trudging through snow as he was finishing) with the wonderful words that as he had the same car at home, he had treated mine as if it was his own!! Music to my ears! How have you found the Wintracs? Worthwhile??
  9. Er, well it wasn't me as I was in deepest, darkest Hampshire all week .... And, I was out on Saturday giving both cars a complete detail, so both are looking fine. Mind you, on Monday AM with newly cleaned and waxed wheels, a Royal Mail truck pulled into the fast lane in front of me so I had to kill the speed with a severe anchoring, and was miffed to leave the front's now covered in brake dust - it was only the first 10 miles since a clean, damnit!! Oh well, an excuse to clean it this Saturday then! And I have Friday off next week, so fingers crossed for decent weather and a mega-detail ... !
  10. Probably a bit unfair to old Frank, but here goes anyway ... ! Was stuck in traffic today in Portsmouth, sat through a few changes of lights while opposite a used car lot. They seem to be one of those 'German Car' used lots ... Anyway, their valet bloke parks a dark blue Passat (06 reg??) up the alley, and gives it the following detail, in the time it took to sit through the lights: 1. Park dirty car next to bucket of suds 2. Do not soak 3. Take large fluffy rag from bucket, and start washing in one action 4. Start with the front driver's alloy 5. Move to body panels - move rag from bottom to top of car in one sweep 6. Perform 360 of entire car in one go - remember to clean alloys when you get to them 7. Scrub windows again, scrub roof last 8. Toss bucket of soapy water on car 9. Approach with squeegee .... ... and then the lights changed and I was off! The whole time, it was like watching someone dragging their nails down a chalk-board ... butt cleanchingly, chewing my hand whilst watching awful. Scary. And here we are spending hours massaging waxes into our motors - this guy did a Passat in about 3 minutes flat!! And presumably then popped it on the forecourt ....
  11. Many,, many years ago I had a summer job fitting car hi-fi. Crude but good test for speaker functionality, is to find the relevant 2 wires to the speaker to be tested, and assuming you can access the terminals, hold one wire to each end of a 1.5v battery. As you rub the terminals on the battery, it should create a crackling sound in the speaker, which would mean it's working. If not, then it MIGHT help isolate a creased / damaged cable .... Worth a try, but only when you're running out of ideas .... )
  12. The Frank Butcher School of Cleaning ... ?

    Well I passed them twice today, but didn't see the Passat ... maybe the bloke was claying it with a brick around the back?! Again, don't think this will surprise anyone here, but about 3 years ago my very good friend was washing his wife's Audi A6 - he was making a good effort, but I felt he could do better. So, being a decent friend and seeing the strain it was putting me under, he sent his wife around in the car to me, she left it on the drive and I had a great time giving the A6 a lovely, soft detail ... I must have been nuts! You have to be a true petrolhead / cleaning nut to have an attractive woman sent around by your best friend, and it's all you can do to keep your hands off her Audi ... !
  13. First professional detail

    (Guess we could all play a game of 'Guess Which Bit of the Car' with those photos ... !)
  14. First professional detail

    Right, I guess it's sad because I'm the same!! Worse still, here are some photos of beading ... ! The GTI has just done 50 miles on a motorway, but managed to stay fairly clean. The Lexus covered about 4 miles (Mrs. Fresco doesn't get around much). Sorry about the image quality, but I took the pics in the garage a moment ago and we have energy-saving lights in there - and with the flash on, the images are just ghosting off the shine! Anyway, here they are ....
  15. First professional detail

    Bizarrely some woman walking past commented on the GTI ... ! She was either impressed with the shine (possibly), or thought I was mad washing in the cold .. ! Red is a decent colour for the GTI, but you have to put up with the pink hue on TSN pictures! Don't think those pics do justice to it (they are a little blurry, didn't use a flash), but was pretty much up against the clock.
  16. First professional detail

    Well would you believe it. About 10:00 this morning, the sun comes out - so I managed to get the GTI and Lexus washed (Megs NXT Wash, 2 buckets), and a coat of Megs QD on each of them in 4 hours flat ... Also managed to get some pics, but then it rained on the GTI - awh! Here they are 0 usual caveat that Tornado Red GTI's show up as pink ... ! The Lexus is due a nice 18"wheels upgrade in March, still on bog-standard alloys as thought it best to see out the winter before putting a bit of bling on .... ! Hope the pics come out okay!
  17. Dsg & esp - esp off or on in snow?

    Well on New Year's Eve I put my GTI into a ditch thanks to some black-ice. Last Monday - bearing in mind it's just back from the bodyshop! - I drove out about 250 yards, and with PS2's fitted (which, from memory, are not recommended for temperature's below 10c) and as you say, I might as well have been running on blocks of ice. No traction at all, the lightest touch of throttle and the back was wandering all over the place while the front tried to figure out were to go .... lethal! I used to live in Prague, and every winter would have to put on winter tyres - the difference in snow was excellent, although they are not the answer to all problems. Assuming I still have the GTI next winter (and I probably will in truth - can't be bothered cashing in worthless shares to fund a new motor!) I reckon a good investment would be in some decent winter tyres (Michelin / Pirelli / Vredestein) and cheap-ish alloy wheels too. Something that I won't be too bothered scuffing or damaging in the usual winter potholes, and winter tyres suitable for heavy rain and some ice / snow work. Would have been cheaper than paying the £500 excess on my policy recently, plus the £92 for a dent to be corrected, and the £150 (but was cheap!) for a new driver's side PS2 to balance up the new PS2's fitted by insurance to the LHS ... !
  18. First professional detail

    All very true! Bodyshop did a pretty good job, but not up to detailing standard - shame! Of late I have been spending time (and money!) wandering around Halfraud's picking up a raft of various Meg's brushes, towels, detailing cloths ... but no decent weather in which to give them a whirl! So in the meantime I keep re-organising my garage shelves, it's getting a bit 'Point of Sale' if you see what I mean!! Your GTI looks fantastic, I reckon you've thrown down the gauntlet to the rest of us ...
  19. First professional detail

    The only wash mine's had in the last 3 month's was the clean when the body-shop handed it back!! Still looks fine as I tend not to drive it to work, but just looking at this thread I'm going mad waiting for decent weather to do a full detail ... ! Is it just me, or is anyone else tearing their hair out waiting for the weather to pick up, and then head out for a detail? I changed Mrs. Fresco's car a few months back (Lexus IS220d), and can't wait to get out and detail the bloody thing!
  20. windscreen scratches

    Before you attack the glass ... ! I had a very light scratch on my windscreen for about a year, it was caused by a slightly gritty edge to a wash-mitt and I felt it rub the glass at the time. (A momentary lapse in my otherwise by-the-book cleaning regime!). Anyway, and to make a long story short, I tried a lot of products and took advice. In the end, the best results were obtained by having a whole new windscreen installed (sorry!). However, you'd be surprised how many defects were in my screen after a year - I couldn't believe the difference in the optics when the new glass went in. Hate to say it due to cost (mine was £700), but a new windscreen is the only way to completely improve the situation. Hope you find a solution that works for you.
  21. As it's all over now .... Unfortuntely had a very slight 'off' in Haslemere just before New Year's. thanks to some ice on the road. At about 25mph on a country lane, the back slid around on a sharpish right turn, causing my GTI to smack laterally into a high kerb and mount it. After a quick check over at the scene, I managed to drive the short distance home, but clearly something was very wrong. Long story short - needed 2 x new Monza II's on the left, plus 2 x Pilot Sport 2's. Quoted (from memory) about £475 per Monza, and PS2's about £221 each. All done in Guildford, although needed to get a driver's side PS2 added (Kwik Fit, £150) to balance out the wear. Done through insurance due to cost, but an extensive little skid on black ice none the less - in terms of policy excess plus Kwik Fit, have shelled out £750-ish personally. Colbourne's in Guildford did an excellent job, including a quick return to them to have the steering wheel 'centered' after adding the new driver's side PS2. Couldn't complement them enough! Mind you, had spotted white-worms on the wheels a month or so ago, so I guess this is one (expensive!) way of sorting them out ... ! Have also decided to keep the GTI a bit longer, it's coming up on 3 years old now, but just passing 20K as use a crap Fiat as the daily charger! Plus replaced Mrs. Fresco's car about 3 month's ago, and can't find a replacement for the GTI that I like as much as the GTI ... ! (Have had a test-drive in the Scirocco, but would prefer something else - beautiful car, but not for me.) Anyway - bit of fun with wheels and tyres since December - but all sorted!
  22. New Monza II's thanks to black ice ... !

    Am fairly sure I uttered a few choice words ... ! Originally thought about getting it done without insurance, but in the end VW themselves advised that in similar prangs it's possible to replace alloys and tyres, then end up replacing bits of steering and suspension if problems still exist. Fortunately mine was mainly wheels and allignment, but a hard pill to swallow! Usual scenario mind - a corner I know well, on roads that GTI's love ... ! However on the one occassion when I took the corner very cautiously - the back slid around. Happened in the blink of an eye, I think I threw in opposite lock but it was probably all over by then!! (PS - I know golf course well .. !)
  23. Last week, bit of flooding etc therefore an increase in the amount of gravel on roads etc. Nothing new. Unfortunately, I got a lump of it flicked up off the car in front on the A3, was left with a nice - repairable - chip to the windscreen of my GTI. No big deal, logged onto Autoglass and booked a callout for 0800 - 1000 Saturday. Slept well. Didn't get the usual call from AG, so phoned them Saturday very early. They had the booking. By lunchtime, clearly they were not coming, so phoned back. Ah ha they hadn't said they WOULD come out, so they didn't. **** it. Was phoned on Monday AM by Chichester AG. Had to phone back. Kept getting put on-hold. Lost patience, tried a few more times but life is precious and not to be wasted on call-handling systems. Phoned today c. midday. Held for 10 minutes. Got bored, tried about 1300. On hold for 5 minutes. Really bored. Logged onto AG, put in a call. It gave me an option for literally anytime, so I picked Saturday morning, 0800 - 1000 slot. Phone call 5 minutes later from AG. How dare I have 2 bookings on their system! Explained the problem, was put on hold (****). Joy - was through to Chichester! They could do tomorrow (Thursday) at 1100. No use, I said - have to work, so Saturday or nothing. How about Friday? Clearly I'm not making myself understood! Chichester then tell me they don't do mobile repairs on a Satuday. I ask (not unfairly) why the system lets me book a call for Satuday? The man ignores the question, and asks can I do next Tuesday? In despair, I agree and we haggle over time. I'm informed that AG only book 2 hour slots, so how about (get this!) anytime from 1200 to 1500. Isn't that technically a 3 hour slot?! Anyway, they read back 'Tuesday, 1000' and put the phone down. I haven't told them yet, but I've booked RAC Windscreens and am happy to pay £65 for the repair rather than have some grumpy **** come to my property and 'repair' my car. AG - shame on you. Rant over! Thank's for reading!
  24. I would be grateful for any and all advice on this one! We've just taken delivery of a new Lexus IS220d for my wife, to replace her LR Freelander. Lexus is mainly used on the school run etc, so far so good (although it has already been to the body shop once in the first 190 miles - new front bumper thanks to Mrs. Fresco!). First impressions of the Lexus are excellent. It came with 16" alloy's as standard, and they really suit the ride quality, plus don't look that small which is a shock to me to be honest (I have 18" Monza's on my GTI). However, the rear of the Lexus is quite big, and I reckon ugrading the alloys is on the cards. Problem is, I don't know whether to go 17" or 18*. Personally, I reckon 18" would look much better, but having recently had a spine injury everytime I look at my GTI I just see an instrument of torture. So I'm half-tempted to stick 17" alloy's on the Lexus, as as safe option. What do people think? Any thoughts / advice? I have been considering these alloys: TSW Demon - Alloy Wheels - Specialist supplier of alloy wheels and tyres packages, 0% Finance and Fast Delivery, Buy Online Many thanks, Fresco
  25. Advice Needed - Lexus IS220d Alloy Upgrade

    Many thanks! I agree re. the size of the wheels - my wife's IS220d is in silver, and from some angles they look fine, then I park beside my GTI and keep staring at these little castors on the Lexus ... ! I reckon 19's would look about right, but there's something about the rear of a Lexus that just looks 'bulky'. Hmmm .... back to the TSW web-site then ... !