Mercedes Clubs National Rally 2022 – Day 4

Day four was a bit of a change of pace for our group.   We didn’t have many KM to cover as were are now part of the rally proper.   The agenda for today was the Show and Shine and then an evening event, held at “The Cube”.   Obviously, our cars were not in any state to display in a show and shine, so we got up early to find a local car wash.     We had a tip from fellow MBCNSW members that there was a DIY carwash 10 minutes away.

Our plan was to go over before breakfast and get the cars washed.   Two of us left the hotel about 6:15AM and found this carwash, which was open but deserted.    You were not allowed to use your own products, but you could put coins in the system and select various modes for the nozzle provided.

The first problem we encountered was a lack of change.   The carwash only accepted gold coins, $1 per 90 seconds.   Since the 450SLC was my daily driver when coin parking meters and bridge tolls were a thing, I had some change in the glovebox.   The gold coins only amounted to $3.    Luckily a cab driver arrived who was willing to swap a $10 note for some gold coins.  We now had $13 to see how clean we could get the cars.

The first setting we tried was the pre-rinse.   That was a waste of a $1.   It was just a pathetic trickle of water out of the hose.   Even breaking a $50 wouldn’t have got us clean cars on this setting.   The pressure soap wash and rinse were the only settings worth a try.   I probably couldn’t have pointed the pressure nozzle at my face without ill effects, but it was at least enough to start washing the cars.   I cheated somewhat by using a few of my microfiber towels to go over the most soiled section of the car after using the wash setting.

A combination of the two pressure settings (with and without soap) and a couple of microfiber towels got the cars passable after a while.   Luckily, there was nobody there to tell us off for not following the rules properly.   I don’t think we could have got the cars clean by the water alone.   We went through $12 of our $13 doing the two cars.     It was at that point that our friend in the 380SEC joined us.   He didn’t have any change and we only had $1 left.

In the end we devised a scheme to have one person on the hose and the other with the towel – 45 seconds with soap and 45 seconds without.    It worked well enough to get the most egregious road grime off the car.  It was certainly better value, as the 380SEC wasn’t noticeably worse than the other two.

2022-04-09 07.13.05I was finished first, so I decided to look at my rear passengers side indicator.   I had been told via the radio that it was really faint and only really visible in the dark.    On removing back of the light cluster, the problem was apparent.   The reflector was broken and the piece that was for the indicator was not allowing the bulb right through the hole.    Simply repositioning the broken reflector to where it should have been if it wasn’t broken fixed the problem.

After breakfast, we continued to the show and shine event, which I will cover separately with a photo gallery.

2022-04-09 17.30.37c

After the photo gallery we had some free time in the afternoon.   I was keen to get the parts needed to get my air conditioning working again.   When I purchased the set of spare belts for the car, I made the mistake of using the owners manual to order what was required.    The issue is my compressor is not original.   Its a more modern replacement in a similar housing to the original GM A6.    Instead of the standard belt, it was using a 13×875.   Luckily a trip to Repco showed they had this belt in stock, as well as another bottle of coolant if the engine fan has to be removed.

Actually, we needed to take two trips to repco, as my front passengers indicator failed driving out of he store.   I purchased some new bulbs for later fitting.   There was some free time to explore around the hotel, and then there were buses to the evening event.    This event was held at “The Cube” located on the d’Arenberg Winery in McLaren Vale.   The Cube featured an art gallery dedicated to the works of Dali as well as others in his style.   Certainly a snail sculpture for $1.1M plus GST was enticing, but I didn’t think my kids would appreciate being turfed out of their house to own it.

Mr Snail

On the higher floors there was wine tasting, food and excellent district views.   I found the cube an interesting experience and better than a standard dinner event at a restaurant.   I tried their Shiraz and found it quite good.   With the wine available, rally attendees were bused to and from The Cube.

Again, another action filled day.   I’m a step closer to A/C for the drive over to Broken Hill.  Tomorrow is a drive day, and for the first time non early start.

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