President's Report - May 2014

Greetings All,

As promised in last month’s column, here is an update on the saga of replacing a damaged towbar on our 306 sedan. Finally, some good news – I made one last attempt to source a towbar by paying a visit to Roof Rack City in Fyshwick and had immediate success when the bloke behind the counter looked up his (on-line) parts catalogue and announced that they could indeed supply me with a suitable towbar.

The catch was, that it was not an off-theshelf towbar, but made-to-order, and that it could take anything up to 6 months! Armed with a part number and a Roof Rack City business card I went back to my panel beater with the news. He has now ordered the towbar and has been told anything up to 3 months for it to arrive. Just as well we have a Hilux ute on loan for a few more months – we can either carry stuff in the tray, or we can use it to tow our trailer.

That’s not the end of things to tell about the 306, either. I had been pretty confident that I had fixed the brake-light/indicator problems when I isolated a cluster of bare wires (from the trailer wiring) and replaced a couple of blown fuses (reported in the March issue of Roar). However, we subsequently noticed that the left rear tail light was not working, which I quickly traced to another pair of exposed wires. Once again, I taped up the wires, replaced a fuse and all was well. And once again, it was clear that the panel beater had been careless when he fitted a new bumper and not been careful with the wiring.

Then (and this is the last word on the 306) I had another bad experience in the form of not being able to start the car. I had left the car with the panel beater for a day and had Sue drop me off to collect it at about 5pm. I jumped in the car but, despite many attempts, it would not start. The starter motor was turning over beautifully, but the engine just would not fire.

So, I called the NRMA, as it was getting dark, and prepared myself for a lengthy wait (peak hour and all that). I was pleasantly surprised when the NRMA guy turned up in about 20 minutes, but he couldn’t get it started either. “I reckon it’s your fuel pump”, he pronounced, and we called a tow truck. Another 20 minutes wait and the 306 was unceremoniously towed to Bill McNamee’s place for examination the next day. The tow truck driver knew exactly where to go – “All the Peugeots go there”, he said, confidently.

The problem turned out to be a key problem. The key I was using, was the spare key (the panel beater still had the original) and it had not been used for a few years, I suppose. It simply needed to be recoded, a job that was done a few days later, while I waited, at Melrose Peugeot. The disappointing thing, for me, was that there was nothing that pointed to a key problem unless the engine was interrogated with the engine management software that Bill and the dealers all have. If I’d been driving the 508, I would have quickly been informed, via a dashboard message, or if had been driving a much older Pug, coded keys would not have been a problem! OK, back to club activities to finish off.

The annual Battle of Waterloo event will be held from 10 am to 2pm on Sunday 15 June, in Kings Park, near the Carillon – the same venue as for the Wheels event, earlier this year. Intending participants should arrive between 9 and 10 am. Note that entry to Kings Park is only from the north-bound lane across King’s Ave bridge (i.e driving towards the Russell Offices from the Parliamentary Triangle). Also note that a condition of NCA approval for the event is that all vehicles must have drip trays. Once again, Shannons are sponsoring the event and the PAC will be running a BBQ. All club members should consider coming along to ensure another glorious French victory on the automobile field of battle.

As usual our monthly meeting will be held at the Raiders Weston Club, at 8pm on Tuesday 27 May, with dinner and drinks from 7pm.

Keep on Pugging,

Brad Pillans

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