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Ring ring.....ring ring......

"Hello?"

"Chris?"

"Yes Gem, what's up?"

"Where's the best place to scrap my Rav4?"

"Why? What's wrong with it?"

"Well, an uninsured driver ran into the back door and my mum's bought me an Xtrail but I want it to go to a good home"

"So why scrap it? I'll give you scrap value for it if you want to get rid of it"

"Cheers Chris, I'll drop it off to you on Wednesday night"

Click

Gemma is my lovely pixie lady friend who's had this little 1998 3 door Rav4 for the last 10 years for running down to the farm every morning to see to her hoss, so it's had hay, tack, etc in it for the last 10 years plus most of the time Matt, her burly boyfriend in the passenger seat.

It's been up and down the country with camping gear, band gear and the general detritus that groovy childless couples seem to drag with them everywhere.

Except she's not cleaned it.

No, I don't mean she didn't clean it before she dropped it off

I mean she's not cleaned it EVER!

So Wednesday night comes and of course in a grim northern town, it's sleeting. Sideways.

I fill in the paperwork whilst Gem's mum waits patiently in her SL (roof up, of course) before driving it down to my garage with a tearful Gem retreating.

Thursday afternoon I open the garage door. Yep, it's still in there, stinking of horse s**t. The dent in the rear door hasn't magically healed itself a la Christine so I see if there's a used panel available.

Bingo! 7 miles away and £30 for a complete tailgate in green :thumbs_up:

Ok, it's off a Jap import but hey, it'll fit!

Friday morning I collect said door, perfect! No dings or rust, just abysmally filthy but it's all there down to the trim and rear wiper :)

Friday afternoon is weigh up time and having a look at what's up with this little 4 wheeler.

The rear impact has pushed the spare in, damaging the door and spare wheel cover but not really anything else. The tickover's way too high, there's a squealing coming from the alternator that sounds like an angry porpoise and the drivers (right hand) window goes down fine but the motor won't lift it all the way back up again.

The radio doesn't work, the clock's out, the dash is dim and the central locking doesn't.

There's also a head shaped dent (yes, probably) in the n/s (passenger side) rear quarter panel and two of the alloy wheel centres are missing. One of the centres still present is fubard.

On the plus side, under all the grimness it's black, has quite a few options fitted, has service history, all MOT's, small stainless front bull bar, and has 3 new tyres and a new battery fitted for the last MOT (7 months ago).

It's taxed and MOT'd too :)

So apart from the general nast it's straight, runs fine and hasn't been skimped on when it comes to maintenance.

Saturday morning sees the 'new' door stripped and ready for paint. A trip to the motor factors sees us in like Flint with half a litre of astral black, some wet n dry, hardener and thinners.

Whilst the paint dries, we jetwash the engine bay, underside and topside. It all looks pretty good!

I dig a NOS stainless steel spare wheel cover out of my parts stash and the plastic cover painted to suit. Custom made decals are ordered and parts want list drawn up.

Sunday morning saw me mounting the new rear door then stripping the old item, only to find that obviously there's no fog lamp recess and the lower trim is completely different so we stall on that one for the time being......

Time to push the dent out of the quarter panel, so we need to remove the rear lamp for access. Except we can't get to the cover panel due to the fact that the back seats seem to be seized solid and won't tilt forward or come out!

So that's where I'm up to.

I think some fiddling with fuses, replacement window motor and d drop of oil will sort most issues.

I'll order a Jap spec rear license plate in the morning and either plumb in a pendant rear fog light or just make a damn big hole for the back of this one and mount it on the Jap spec plastic rear trim panel.

Until then I sprayed it with WD. A lot. Then shut the garage door.

Which begs the question, how the smeg do I get the back seats out without a spark eroder and a bottle of baby oil? Bearing in mind the little straps have disintegrated.......
 

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I am really enjoying this post. Can we have some photos?
 

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Sounds like a great score!, I am always looking for little gems like that!, pulling an interior out of a RAV and washing the entire thing is something I am now quite familiar with, and if yours smells like horse or other nasty, hanging the carpet up and pressure washing it after a good detergent soak helps a lot!

When you say spark eroder I think of the EDM I use at work, probably not practical :p.
if the pull strap has broken off, I guess the only way is to get under the seat?. I have not tried it myself tho :(
Might have a look at mine tho, I am sure there is a way to hook onto the mechanisim.
 

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RAV4 has a weak ground and I always tell people with 4,1s to run extra grounds from battery to firewall and to motor. It is easy and cheap to do and all you need is 4 good connectors,2 pieces of wire a short metal screw to go into firewall after you clean a spot down to bare metal,do not use too long of a screw or drill too deep. Spray with clear paint after. Go to metal part of motor.
No you will not get 20 extra HP but I and others have found it starts quicker and is more responsive. Everything still works with a weak ground but it is hard on it.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the replies folks, some very useful tips and recommendations. I'll be doing the earth modification when it's done.

Right,

Sitrep

Non working clock and stereo now work thanks to the posts on here telling me where the fuse is!

The sticky drivers window now operates with a smoothness akin to a freshly buttered banister, the lights on the dash work after turning the dimmer to BRIGHT :)

The head sized dent has been mostly pushed out and the new back door is a perfect paint match and shuts like it had been there since manufacture.

The central locking now does but the key's a bit worn. Still turns the ignition fine though!

The back seats have been removed by unbolting the front hinges and grummaging about in the snot and slime until I found the bolts which hold them to the rail - out they came! They're now on the bench awaiting disassembly after being doused liberally with WD40.

The rear carpet has been removed, shampooed, jetwashed and hung up to dry. All interior clips are now present and correct.

Stuff to do:

I need a Jap spec rear license plate making (who'd have thought they were all different - apparently there's no standard size! And the rear fog light needs sorting or replacing - a flush fitting LED item would be absolutely perfect if there was such a thing......?

The alternator is still very very angry about something and the nsr quarter needs prepping for paint.

Then chaps, just a good valet, cut & polish and the replacement spare wheel cover fitting and if I can find some wheel centres I'd be happy as a happy thing in stuff that makes it happy.

I wanted to take before and after photos but due to the proliferation of enthusiasm there might only be the 'finished item' shots.

Oh, and a rear wiper blade..... I fear the wife's E class may be losing a bit of it's wiper for the cause. Heck, she doesn't look through all the windscreen anyway!

;D
 

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Excellent work :D, your little RAV will be such a happy little thing very soon :D
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Tonight's report:

Rear seats lubed, freed up and back in the car.

Dent now filled and primed ready for top coat.

Not much I know but I do have a spare UK spec rear fog light and a rear tailgate glass if anyone wants them!

The latter was a challenge set by a mate of mine who told me it was 'impossible' to remove the glass from the old tailgate without calling a windscreen fitter or I'd "definitely break it".

Guess what?

Out in one piece. I love it when people tell me things 'can't be done'! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Finished!

Righto then, here it is, finished!

The pictures were taken a couple of days ago, since then I've refitted the rear head restraints, load cover and boot bag.

In addition, I've added a teeny weeny LED fog light in the back trim as the Jap import rear door didn't have one!









 

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WOW, that looks awesome!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I neglected to tell the forum that I replaced the straps on the rear seats - the ones you pull to make them fold or remove them - with the webbing straps off a redundant baby car seat. Perfect width, same colour and a little longer making operation easier. Perfect!
 

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Absolutely impressive!! From looking at the photos, I would have thought it was a car that had been well cared for since purchase, not one that at one time had been sentenced for the scrapyard! Great job!!
 

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Just a polite observation, Cureforsanity: the term "Jap" is just as offensive and inappropriate as "the N word" or other preparative references to ethnicity. Electrons are free - you can spell out "Japanese" for free, and then not appear to be a bloody racist.
 

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Jap sounds fine to me ;)
 

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Jap sounds fine to me ;)
agreed, you would have to be deliberately using it in some hateful context to be even remotely insensitive over here.

if not, then might as well ban 'Brit', 'yank' and 'Aussie' too then :p.
 

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Looks really good!, a rental carpet cleaner would work well on the seats too, that or would you just find some clean ones at the wrecker?
 

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Oh, the burden of Empire

agreed, you would have to be deliberately using it in some hateful context to be even remotely insensitive over here.

if not, then might as well ban 'Brit', 'yank' and 'Aussie' too then :p.
It is certainly heartwarming to see that colonial attitudes are alive and well in Merrie Old England and the Island of Penal Transportation. Perhaps someday you will join the civilized world, where people recognize that the harm done by racial slurs is measured by the effect upon those being denigrated, not measured by the "deliberate" intent of those doing the denigrating.

You should both be ashamed.
 

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It is certainly heartwarming to see that colonial attitudes are alive and well in Merrie Old England and the Island of Penal Transportation. Perhaps someday you will join the civilized world, where people recognize that the harm done by racial slurs is measured by the effect upon those being denigrated, not measured by the "deliberate" intent of those doing the denigrating.

You should both be ashamed.
lmao, sorry I do not conform to your bubble-wrapped politically correct master race ;)
that is all else I have to say about it, come over to YT of Google+ if you would like to know more ;)
 
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