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Old 16-02-2016   #1
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1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

This is my recently acquired '94 Cabrio ELX, I bought it very cheap as a project to do up hopefully for the summer.

Initial Thoughts
When I went to look at the car the first time it was obvious its quite tatty. it has dents everywhere, scratches, moss growing in places etc. I took a test drive (fortunately it wasn't raining so put the top down) it is a pleasant drive, rides quite well but my main concentration was on the engine, the 1.6 is not fast... It's not slow either but its very mediocre... Secondly it has VERY short gears which I don't understand since surely the 1.6 would have longer gears than the other models yet it doesn't, in fact all the Cabrio's have shorter gears than their hardtop equivalents, presumably due to the extra weight. At 70mph in 5th the engine is spinning at just over 4000rpm

Background
The car came with the original manual which I assume is probably a rarity as many of them will have been lost/not passed on between sales. The car includes the original sales receipt from 1994 and some service history for the first 5 years of its life where it only covered about 1500 miles a year which probably meant it was a summer only car. Then there is a 9 year gap between 1999 and 2008 where I have 0 history for the car. From 2008 to 2016 I have MOT's and the odd service receipt, in those years its only averaged about 1000 miles a year too, with it passing every MOT after general serviceable items were replaced such as bulbs, worn brakes/tyres, wiper blades etc.

So here is the car as it stands now after a very quick wash,









A few months later and half a polish

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Old 16-02-2016   #2
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

Good Bits
  • Mechanically the car is good as far as I can tell so far, nothing I'm worrying about.
  • Has the original radio and alloys so hopefully that means its never been 'chav'd up' in its life.
  • Roof operates properly.
  • Last 8 years of MOT's have shown no major problems.
  • Floor pan/sills etc look solid and free of rust.
  • Radiator and exhaust look new so have probably been replaced recently.

Bad Bits / To-do List
Major
  • Roof Leaks around rear window, stiching has come apart in the corners.
  • Thermostat maybe gone, on the drive home didn't get much above 70C in an hours driving.
  • Bonnet and boot floor has rust issues that need addressing.
Minor
  • Crack/chip in offside headlight.
  • Chips in windscreen (may have been repaired?).
  • No headlight indicator on dash.
  • Key falling apart (sellotaped together) and remote locking dead.
  • Both door locks are hard to operate.
  • Electric windows struggle to close themselves.
  • Seat-belts don't retract properly.
  • Bonnet release has come off -Fixed
Cosmetic
  • Crack in rear bumper + rear bumper support rusted through.
  • Dents everywhere...
  • Small scratches on doors (been bashed into other cars by the looks)
  • Touch up chipped paint.
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Old 16-02-2016   #3
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

Pictures of aforementioned damage/issues.

The roof has holes/splits like this in both lower corners of the rear window where stitching is split, I'm 99% sure this is the source of my leak.




The leak primarily comes in between these folds at the rear of the roof, this is just above where the parcel shelf would be for reference, to the left of the rear window.


...and causing this moss type green to grow on the parcel shelf area...

When I went to look at the car it had a small pool of water in the spare wheel well and the boot carpet was wet, the previous owner obviously knew about this (it was described in the sale advert) and has cut a drain hole into the bottom of the spare wheel well as a drain point. The problem with this is the edges of said hole are bare metal and are a bit crusty and have a bit of surface rust so I need to put something on the edges to stop that progressing.
The good news is the actual boot floor isn't rusting, hooray!

Dents, dent's everywhere!



This one (above) has caused the bumper to bend and curve outward which I didn't notice until I saw the other side of the bumper is shaped with the body.


These are not the only dents, just the big ones, it has a few smaller ones down the sides where doors have been opened into it and several small dents in the bonnet which is overall a bit of a mess and I'm tempted just to replace the whole thing.

Chip in headlight - I don't know if this was before its last MOT so I have no idea if it's going to be an issue.


Paint coming off door edges where its presumably been opened into other things e.g. cars/walls.




Rear bumper, where it bolts to the body has rusted and the bolt hole is just a rusty mess so bumper is a bit loose on that side.

Some of this rust is visible from the outside...


Oh and at some point the exhaust was obviously hung wrong because its melted the bumper a bit but it seems sorted now as I cannot get it to touch the bumper no matter how hard I try.
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Old 16-02-2016   #4
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

So my questions are -
  • The dashboard has no indicator light that the headlights or sidelights are on, all the exterior lights work and come on when switched but nothing on the dash indicates this, at first I thought the bulb has just gone but the dash doesn't appear to light up the gauges etc either
  • What should I do to my exposed rust to stop it spreading?
  • How do I remove the headlining at the rear of the roof to get at the leak from the inside to attempt to repair it?
  • The chips in the windscreen, is it easy to tell if they have been repaired (as in fixed by someone like Autoglass?) so I don't have to worry about the windscreen cracking.
  • The door locks are very stiff and quite difficult to turn, can I remedy this easily? Grease them maybe?
  • Electric windows are very slow to close and sometimes stop just short of closing and I have to re-press the button to start it moving again, motors dying or mechanism need lubricating?
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Old 16-02-2016   #5
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

Congratulations on your new purchase. The bodywork looks quite good in the photos. The issue we have with Bertie is the lacquer peeling on the bonnet and above the windscreen. I would advise having a look at this thread to ensure that you fold the roof correctly: https://www.fiatforum.com/punto/3511...oof-issue.html If the roof is leaking at the rear window, check the spare wheel well - you may have a lake forming! Looking at some of your other issues, they may just be typical Cabrio issues. The seatbelts do need a little assistance to retract properly. The windows can be slow, particularly the nearside. Remote locking stops working, but central locking should be ok. Check the heater matrix for leaks. The ecu sits below the matrix, so it is worth placing a plastic cover over the ecu to protect it against future leaks. The electrical connecter on the ignition switch can become temperamental, but can be resolved with a cable tie holding it in place - crude but effective.
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Old 16-02-2016   #6
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

Nice project, subscribed.
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Old 16-02-2016   #7
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

Very nice!
I should post my own thread soon
Please post some engine pictures

And does your fuel pump work at switch on position or just when you crank it?
Do you hear a buzz when you open the switch?
I've read fuel pump works only at cranking the engine unlike any other Punto models.
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Last edited by chesh; 16-02-2016 at 20:04.
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Old 16-02-2016   #8
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

subscribed...

remote locking is usually the key at fault. On both my GT and my recent Bravo the button inside the key had come loose from the circuit board and a careful bit of soldering has had them working again.

dash cluster, if i understand you this just doesn't light up at all?? does anything on it light up? If not i would be taking it off and cleaning up the contacts on it and the wires that connect to it and seeing if that fixes it, highly unlikely ALL the bulbs have gone but not sure if thats what you mean or not.

rust... If its really localised then taking paint off in the area back to clean metal and then going over it in red oxide paint will probably slow it down but it won't stop it completely. No real way to stop rust spreading other than cutting it all back to good metal and welding in nice new metal and then painting to seal it up.

windscreen.. I'd not worry about it unless there is alot of chips in which case I'd just get a new screen really. Not done a mk1 punto one so not sure if its sealed in with sealant stuff or just the rubber seal, only ever done a cento and on them its really just the rubber seal so you can do it yourself on the drive. a search of the section might throw up an answer - or maybe check insurance as alot will do new screen and not effect your ncb and you just have an excess to pay.

locks.. get some graphite lock lube and spray into the locks, they should free up pretty quickly, good stuff it is. I have just bought some for your old panda's fuel filler lock as thats really tight too - i really should get round to that actually lol.

windows.. seen alot of them have slow windows now. You can try stripping the doors off and cleaning and lubing runners etc with some silicone grease. Its not gonna do any harm doing so - but you may ultimately find its the motors themselves going slow.
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Old 16-02-2016   #9
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

Quote Originally Posted by chesh View Post
Very nice!
I should post my own thread soon
Please post some engine pictures

And does your fuel pump work at switch on position or just when you crank it?
Do you hear a buzz when you open the switch?
I've read fuel pump works only at cranking the engine unlike any other Punto models.
I'll post a picture and get back to you about the fuel pump operation too.

Quote Originally Posted by blu73 View Post
subscribed...

remote locking is usually the key at fault. On both my GT and my recent Bravo the button inside the key had come loose from the circuit board and a careful bit of soldering has had them working again.

dash cluster, if i understand you this just doesn't light up at all?? does anything on it light up? If not i would be taking it off and cleaning up the contacts on it and the wires that connect to it and seeing if that fixes it, highly unlikely ALL the bulbs have gone but not sure if thats what you mean or not.

rust... If its really localised then taking paint off in the area back to clean metal and then going over it in red oxide paint will probably slow it down but it won't stop it completely. No real way to stop rust spreading other than cutting it all back to good metal and welding in nice new metal and then painting to seal it up.

windscreen.. I'd not worry about it unless there is alot of chips in which case I'd just get a new screen really. Not done a mk1 punto one so not sure if its sealed in with sealant stuff or just the rubber seal, only ever done a cento and on them its really just the rubber seal so you can do it yourself on the drive. a search of the section might throw up an answer - or maybe check insurance as alot will do new screen and not effect your ncb and you just have an excess to pay.

locks.. get some graphite lock lube and spray into the locks, they should free up pretty quickly, good stuff it is. I have just bought some for your old panda's fuel filler lock as thats really tight too - i really should get round to that actually lol.

windows.. seen alot of them have slow windows now. You can try stripping the doors off and cleaning and lubing runners etc with some silicone grease. Its not gonna do any harm doing so - but you may ultimately find its the motors themselves going slow.
Thanks for all the advice,
Remote locking - There is a light on the key that does light up when the button is pressed so the key is somehow doing something, the cars manual documents how to 'pair' the key to the car so I might try that.

Dash cluster - No lights for sidelights or headlights on dash, all the other warning lamps are working like handbrake and indicator light etc. But with headlights switched on I get no change on the cluster, it doesn't light up in itself nor do any of the switches on the dashboard.

Rust... Ugh, I hate dealing with it, will probably get someone to weld in new metal when its on the road.

Locks - Thanks for recommendation, I know what you mean about Charmanda's fuel lock (for those who don't know Charmanda is my old Panda which I sold to blu) being a bit stiff but this is worse, the drivers side you really have to force sometimes to get the key to turn, the passenger side is better but still feels like it doesn't want to turn.
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Old 17-02-2016   #10
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

I have just put my soft top back on, I will do up photo shoot of what you need to do, be prepared there is a nice bit of work, I got my top repaired where it was gone as a stop gap measure till I get a new top. The outer "roof" material is held in place with pop rivets to the frame so they need to be drilled out, I replaced them with black self tappers. Mine has the manual roof but I assume the procedure for removal is much the same.
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Old 17-02-2016   #11
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

Quote Originally Posted by digger58 View Post
I have just put my soft top back on, I will do up photo shoot of what you need to do, be prepared there is a nice bit of work, I got my top repaired where it was gone as a stop gap measure till I get a new top. The outer "roof" material is held in place with pop rivets to the frame so they need to be drilled out, I replaced them with black self tappers. Mine has the manual roof but I assume the procedure for removal is much the same.
Window speed has been glacial from new on ours! Silicone may help, but a little help from a hand usually works!!
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Old 17-02-2016   #12
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

glacial... i like that.
On my old GT the drivers side went pretty much the speed you'd expect from a electric window but the passenger side was so slow it was painful.
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

My two front ones are very slow as well (Love the Glacial), Haven't stripped them yet but intend to. Are they wire/pulleys or Bowden cable? Didn't get a chance today to get pics for you of the roof assembly, Do you want them?
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Old 17-02-2016   #14
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

Quote Originally Posted by chesh View Post
Very nice!
I should post my own thread soon
Please post some engine pictures

And does your fuel pump work at switch on position or just when you crank it?
Do you hear a buzz when you open the switch?
I've read fuel pump works only at cranking the engine unlike any other Punto models.
I tested this morning and I can confirm I can't hear the fuel pump prime when the ignition is switched on so I can only assume it does only start pumping as you turn the engine.
and here's a picture of my engine bay,




Quote Originally Posted by digger58 View Post
I have just put my soft top back on, I will do up photo shoot of what you need to do, be prepared there is a nice bit of work, I got my top repaired where it was gone as a stop gap measure till I get a new top. The outer "roof" material is held in place with pop rivets to the frame so they need to be drilled out, I replaced them with black self tappers. Mine has the manual roof but I assume the procedure for removal is much the same.
Pictures of that would be great! I may replace the roof in the future depending on how long I end up keeping the car but for now I just want to repair the leak, I need to try and get behind the roof lining near the rear window but from a further look this morning it doesn't seem possible, it seems as if its stitched into place?
Quote Originally Posted by Punto1cab View Post
Window speed has been glacial from new on ours! Silicone may help, but a little help from a hand usually works!!
Quote Originally Posted by blu73 View Post
glacial... i like that.
On my old GT the drivers side went pretty much the speed you'd expect from a electric window but the passenger side was so slow it was painful.
glacial windows for sure. They seem to have sped up a bit the more I put them up and down so hopefully the mechanism is just a bit stiff, I'll try and grease them. I don't mind that they're slow it's that they can barely close themselves, the 'one-touch' operation on the drivers side stops the window about an inch or so before the window has closed so you have to press the button again and wait about half an hour for it to make that last inch

@blu73 - Further trying to explain my headlight issue, basically this is my dash when the headlights are switched on.


The sidelight or headlight symbols aren't lit up, neither does the dashboard seem to have lit up in anyway, although it's hard to tell since it's broad daylight, I'll have to try at night...
If I put the main beam on I get the light for that,

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Old 17-02-2016   #15
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Re: 1994 Punto Cabriolet ELX 90

Quote Originally Posted by Punto1cab View Post
Window speed has been glacial from new on ours! Silicone may help, but a little help from a hand usually works!!
from showroom new..??

my other punto's ( roofed) have been reasonable.. not powerful but acceptable
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