PRX644 Vauxhall Cresta
Andy de Clerck is a new member of the Vauxhall Cresta Club, he has been busy for the last 3 years restoring PRX 644, or affectionately known as "Christina". Here is a brief description from Andy of the story so far:
We bought her on ebay in august 2006 when she was badly painted pink and grey looking rather sad and tired -
Upon being stripped down to bare metal, stripping off eight different paint colour layers deciding that originally she was a dark navy blue. However my wife always liked Pink so that is what she had to be.
She has been completely rebuilt to near original spec only adding a second brake master cylinder to improve the braking efficiency!!! However, I have been constantly told that the rear bumper is from the slightly later model, but I just prefer that bumper anyway.
Bumpers etc, re-chromed, new carpets engine strip down, clean, paint and unleaded conversion. Decided to paint her a metallic pink with a pearlescent white which we think sets her off a treat.
Once she was rebuilt and looking stunning (our opinion), Only to be told by a friend the miss fire we had was due to the distributor. After a year of trying to get hold of one (never did) and having an electronic one delivered by 123 ignition which didn’t fit! We eventually managed to get the original one back from the guy that took it away to rebuild it .
Upon re-installing the distributor and getting her running we were still having problems through the rev range, Thinking the problem is in the ignition system, I had another chap investigate the distributor, who said that although some wear present, it would not cause the issues, anyway we cleaned out the carb then checked the compression to find two cylinders very low! At this stage I was beginning to feel the job was over.
So off came the rocker cover to find the tappets were solid! Phew! Relief all round! And yes she runs much more sweetly now. All that was left, as I thought, was a rocker cover gasket as the last person installed it crooked damaging the seal. Kindly Peter from the Cresta Club here, loaned me a gasket as I couldn’t obtain one as Richard was away.
Time for the long awaited MoT ... she failed! Rear brake cylinders – by now Richard was back and he had two! Couldn’t believe my luck, received them promptly and finally she passed with flying colours and is on the road.
The only possible change for me is to try and source some decent white wall tyres or maybe change the wheels for some cragers, the juries out at present. Next job a retro stereo install and we’re good for cruisin’!
Can I say a very special thanks to Peter and Richard who undoubtedly kept me sane and for their generosity in helping me out. We really look forward to meeting up with everyone soon.
Thanks again and hope you like our car.
Andy & Jeanette