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My Renault 21 Quadra Supershed

massivewangers

ClioSport Club Member
  Several
#4
My Escort project thread is under "Other Marques". Who cares where you post it, this is cool and would love to read more about it!
 
  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#7
These are awesome! 👍
My feeling also. I've been into my 21's since '96, I pulled this heap out of a scrap yard about 20 years ago (yes, i'm really old), '97 IIRC, after an engine bay fire. Shortly after I found a '91 J-Plate that was crashed in 1993 and then sat in a scrap yard, indoors, for years till it was evicted to the yard and spotted by the then-21-owners-club chairman who mentioned it to me in passing on MSN Messenger (those were the days!). I got hold of the owner and bought the whole, crashed mess, with only 18,042 miles on the clock and plagiarised it to resto the white H-Plate fire damaged shell.

To this day there is still soot from the fire in the door shuts. I left it there for...well...I dont know really. Because I couldnt be bothered to clean it. The crashed one came complete with a mouse nest in the glovebox and a pile of broken s**t that got me the biggest bollocking yet off my grandad when it was delivered to his drive.
Saying that, once transplanted, the drivetrain has served me for two decades and 30,000 miles and not let me down once - still on the original head gasket, and I didnt even change the alternator, water pump and starter motor till 2016 before I did a big euro trip in it.

Here are some old pics, taken with one of those old fashioned camera things, because it was still a few years until some bright spark thought "Oh I know lets put this camera on this phone and see what happens" let alone the arrival of the smartphone. In fact, i'm pretty sure I bought this car around the same time I got a phone that was capable of sending a text message
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The crashed car as I found it
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Assorted pics of the crashed car and burned bits of the white car.

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  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#11
That is some serious 'project' pics :D lol

Kudos for rescuing a rare beast - they were rare back in the day, nevermind now!
Thats two decades ago now mate, you guys are 20 years, 30,000 miles, a mortgage, 2 kids, a separation, and a mid-life crisis behind the times
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The pic in the initial post of this thread is in 2016 at the very top of the Swiss Alps. My old heap ticked off 2004 miles in 8 days driving from the midlands to Andermatt, up and down the Alps for a bit, then wombled up to the Nurburgring for a couple of days alongside a Noble M12 GTO, an Ultima CanAm, and 5 other choice machines before returning home.
The history of the car is sort of relevant to the project thread as it builds a picture of the cars history, where we have been and what we have done and why i'm about to throw another inordinate amount of time, effort and money into a rusty old Renault 21.

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I chased the Noble down the Nufenen pass with the Ultima snapping at my bootlid, absolutely unforgettable, and after thanking my past self for the 4-pot, 330mm brake upgrade and wringing the sweat out of my shirt we went paragliding and then landed right next to a hooters for lunch. That was a good day :)

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  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#12
Spa Classic 2015, awesome weekend - but they wouldn't let my poor 21 in the gate with the others to park inside the circuit as it wasn't posh enough :D, I had to settle for bringing it back on the Monday to drive the full circuit.

If you only drive one bit of track in your life make it Eau Rouge/Radillon. Its absolutely bum-squeakingly awesome, even better in the wet in a shoddy old Renault.


For those of you that don't know the Quadra is permanent 4wd hence the unusual grip level on a slippery track, I think we exited over the top of Radillon at just under 100, hitting about 135 on the kemmel straight which is surprisingly uphill. If you watch all of the video you will see that it doesnt seem to go too bad for what it is. My passenger then reset the laws of gravity and physics in the Ultima with me in the passenger seat - well over 100 over Radillon and we touched 161mph down the kemmel straight. What a machine that is!
 
  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#15
love these!
remember the one make cup the did....awesome!
That was the Europa Cup cars, there's a few still about. A mate has a really good FB group on em, he's a Europa Cap supernerd: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1983531368540249/

I see him most days. There’s also a few R19 Turbos knocking around at local car shows too and a Laguna BiTurbo, makes me tingle when I see it. Might try and get myself to some more shows to get some decent pics
Only 19 Turbo they made was the Turbo Diesel, the tastiest the 19 got was the F7P powered 16v.
The BiTurbo was a Safrane, and they only made them in left hand drive, we never got them in the UK (b******s).
 
#18
That was the Europa Cup cars, there's a few still about. A mate has a really good FB group on em, he's a Europa Cap supernerd: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1983531368540249/


Only 19 Turbo they made was the Turbo Diesel, the tastiest the 19 got was the F7P powered 16v.
The BiTurbo was a Safrane, and they only made them in left hand drive, we never got them in the UK (b******s).
Nah I’m sure there was a 19T with that bonnet vent duct? That’s probably the one, although it does look like a BTCC style Laguna I so could be a possible engine swap
 
#21
This is awseome! My boss when i was 19 had a 21 quadra. We all thought it was the coolest car at the time.
He wrote it off when he fell asleep at the wheel one night and we all gave him s**t daily for about a year.
More pics please!
 
  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#22
My dad had a 25 with the 2.8 V6 in it. He let me use it after I passed my test. I was the don with a whole 150bhp lol
The R25 V6T was quite potent at 190bhp, you should have whacked a T3 on it haha!

Nah I’m sure there was a 19T with that bonnet vent duct? That’s probably the one, although it does look like a BTCC style Laguna I so could be a possible engine swap
Must have been a conversion, the vents were on all the 16v models. Defo never an OE Petrol Turbo released. I did see a few R5 GTT C1J's dropped in back in the day, it was an easy conversion.

This the one that was at RS Tuning RR day a couple of years ago? I always liked these, super cool big brother to the R5 GTT.
It was, and yeah always gets a great reaction, usually either "OMG I havent seen one of these in years" or "WTF is that thing?"

This is awseome! My boss when i was 19 had a 21 quadra. We all thought it was the coolest car at the time.
He wrote it off when he fell asleep at the wheel one night and we all gave him s**t daily for about a year.
More pics please!
It wasn't a black J-Plate was it, I might have bought it for the reshell
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At the Ring - we had a small wobble on this trip, the morning we left for home the olive on my solid water line out of the turbo failed and I lost a load of coolant, so I literally took the rubber pipe off the other side, joined them together and ran the turbo without water cooling. The day before I pulled a silly donut move in a gravel car park and the propshaft centre bearing s**t its pants and started making a horrible noise....so I took the whole prop off and stuck it in the boot and did another lap anyway. These things will run happily in 2wd form if you take the prop off.

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Slightly older pic before the brake upgrade. This is a boys trip to the Lake District in 2010.

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A stop at Riems on the way to the 30th Birthday of the 21 Turbo release at Pouilly en Auxois

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Amusing myself after I towed a dead Quadra off a French highway and we stuck him on a recovery truck

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Stopped at a French dealer just because.....why not?

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  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#23
Anyway, enough of my self indulgent memoirs (for now).

Every single Renault 21 released in RHD in the UK had a sunroof. And we all know what old Renault sunrooves do - they leak. After I stripped the interior I started keeping a towel under the passenger seat to mop up the water that would pool in the footwell, that towel has lived in the car for a decade or so! Anyway, it's resto time now and I was contemplating plating up the hole, but getting that right is always a fecker isnt it? Lots and lots of horror stories out there, warped roof from welding, cracked filler- its generally a minefield.
I looked up the P/N for a solid roof skin, of course its no longer available. That left me with the only other option of scouring the continent for someone who would take me seriously when I said "excusez-moi mon ami, please chop the top off that car for me". I trawled the French facebook groups and Leboncoin and basically got no reply from anyone, even tried to buy a couple of poverly spec saloons whole but to no avail. I think the brexit thing may have upset the frogs or something lol.
I was almost resigned to plating it up when a guy replied to one of my FB group posts out of the blue, and after a few messages each way it transpired he had a non-turbo breaker and was actually taking me seriously. A few days later I got this.

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I mean, how awesome is that. The guy chopped a roof off for a crazy Englishman on the back of a few FB messages. Legend!
He was in a place called Libourne, which is near Bordeaux. I'm in the midlands so he was a 12 hour drive away, long way! I spend a month or two assessing options and waiting for one of my courier friends to pass close by...this actually happened and Lucasz called me with an empty sprinter from Bordeaux - I messaged Christian and he was away for the weekend. Gutted.
I think we got to about three months since the roof was removed and he messaged me to say he was visiting his son near Paris in a place called Villers St Frederic for three days 9-12th Sept, and could take the roof with him, so I jumped at the chance to halve the distance of retrieval. I left at 04:20am on the 11th, and met Christian, and was home by 21:00 that night :D

So. I have a solid roof skin. What could possibly go wrong?

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  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#24
Before I started this thread the poor old 21 had already been attacked by me and a set of air tools, and half stripped out for the forthcoming de-rust-a-thon. Its getting to the point where if I don't catch it now, when I unbolt the substructure the body is just going to explode like a clown car in a big poof of iron oxide.

I have stripped out as much as I could while keeping it running so I could move it around, including all the glass save the windscreen and now the V6 is back on the road it's time to take the heart out and crack on with stripping the shell out.

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  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#25
Some earlier photos of the tin worm. The RS series of Renault, 172 onwards, were the first generation of French chod that didnt seem to rust for fun, before that you can almost sit and watch the things turn to dust. Ive staved it off a bit here and there but the last few years I havent really in expectation of geting the garage built and doing this.

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Coops Mk1

ClioSport Club Member
  RB 182/Mk1 F7P+F4R
#26
I feel the pain, my second mk1 16v clio (a 1994 vintage) is turning slowly on the drive into the contents of that dustpan you have there

I am not looking forward to tackling that, keep ignoring it and hoping it'll go away!
 
  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#28
After dropping the front subframe I decided I wanted to keep it mobile so I used some leftover wood and screws from the garage build and a couple of 160kg castors from toolstation. Oh and I hoovered the garage too as it was getting a bit manky!

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Exhaust off

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Prop off and stored in the roof (forgot to take a pic after I removed it), it was reconditioned in 2016 so should be good to go after a clean and a lick of paint

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Then I set about the next big bit, the rear axle assembly. I removed the driveshafts to improve access to brake lines and stuff first, as its pretty easy to get to the inner flanges. I have never had them off the car so was expecting a huge fight with the big allen bolts but in the end only one really gave me any trouble and I thought it was about to round out so I have it a good old heat up and it came out OK

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Not bad nick for 30 years old and the last 20 on the car without being touched!
 
  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#29
I spent Sunday morning at Silverstone, went on track in this thing, which was awesome

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Had a great hoon out in the Vee, which is now filthy, then back in the garage in the afternoon. Decided to drop the axle complete, to make it easier to deal with the various rusty bolts and stuff off the car.

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Drained the diff, good to see the oil I put in it ages ago was still nice and clean.

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I undid the rear shocks at the trailing arms, but left the bolts in, undid the rear centre diff mount, then supported the diff on a jack and rattle gunned out the enormous axle crossmember bolts - thjis is one next to a standard size wheel nut.

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Then as the axle dropped I had really good access to the brake lines, as usual though everything rounded off so out came the cutters. Even after that with a hex socket they rounded so I had to cut everything away with a grinder. I got the flexis out in one piece, not that I will re-use them but I can use them to size up for braided lines in the future.


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After they were off and the diff lock plugs and pipes were removed I put the wheels on, knocked the shock bolts out and dropped it on the floor. I removed the coil springs and a couple of plastic shields (rotten screws again)

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and just rolled the whole axle out the back.

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I also noticed whoever fitted the rear shock many moons ago left the original packaging strapping on the top... I mean, how lazy is that? These seem to be in decent nick despite the age but I see a coilover replacement in the future plans :)

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  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#30
Last job on Sunday was pulling this central diff mount out, guess how many of the 4 M10's snapped.

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Thats right. All of them, of course. It seems though the studs are held in my metal plates and they are then riveted so this was an easy solve...drill out the rivets, remove the plates. You can see how it works below. I'll probably just grind the stud heads off and knock the broken body out, then tack weld in some M10 allen head bolts, easy enough!

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I wonder if it thinks its being scrapped View attachment 122467

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Just out of curiosity before I packed up I removed some of the seam sealer on the inner wings to see how far the rust monster had eaten.

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Not as bad as it could have been, not as good as I would like!

I also seem to have bought a brand new Plasma Cutter so yeah. Thats dangerous.
 

alistairolsen

ClioSport Club Member
#31
Looking forward to watching this unfold. Restos are always good, but they're better when the car has a story and the owner has an emotional attachement. Please keep us up to date with plenty of pics!

The rear axle is startlingly similar to the BMW E30!
 
  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#33
Looking forward to watching this unfold. Restos are always good, but they're better when the car has a story and the owner has an emotional attachement. Please keep us up to date with plenty of pics!

The rear axle is startlingly similar to the BMW E30!
Emotionally invested, yes, I guess I am lol. I only hope I do it justice as a hobbyist, self taught piss artist :D

Feel free to browse my recently completed last project thread here, where I built the garage you see me working in now, while waiting for updates on the supershed :)
 
  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#36
Today we hark back to 2014 when I was sick to death of the fuel surge the car got on hard right turns when below 1/3 of a tank of fuel. Every roundabout I chucked it round and hit the gas to haul it out of the corner (which these things do REALLY well with the 4wd) ended in a cough-splutter-splutter instead of that yee-haw traction and launch into warp factor 17. I'll be sticking with the same setup going forward as it's worked great but the pumps are quite loud inside the car so need boxing in.
It's also rigged up with redundancy, so should a pump fail I can change 2 pipes with a 16mm spanner and run single pump get-me-home mode.
Lesson learned here, the rubber based -even braided- fuel hose permeates fuel vapour, you never realise this when it runs outside the car as its such a small amount but inside the car it gathers and basically ends up smelling like a BP station all the damn time. I ended up changing everything internal for teflon braided line (and that meant all the AN-fittings have to change too) before the trip to the Swiss Alps so I didnt spend 2000 miles and 8 days tripping balls from the fumes lol.

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  21T, 9T, 172, V6
#40
No swirl pot inside the tank?
Normal baffles yes, but for some reason it choked up on hard right turns. It does corner harder than the OE car, but I think maybe the bottom of the pickup doesn't sit right or something. I swapped out the tank and sender complete a while before this but it still did it, stupid French design lol

Loving this!

I’ll be honest, I had no idea these were 4wd!
Most weren't, there was around 1500 21 Turbo 2wd made over three phases, the Quadra was only Phase 2 or 3, and they only made 146 in right hand drive. By my estimates there are about 20 left, at best.
 

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