Damn woodruff key on the crank disintegrated while starting up car at work on wednesday morning after a long shift. Result - a noise like a handful of bolts in a food blender, a snapped camshaft and one trashed cylinder head. The crank pulley was in good condition but damn annoying that this known problem has now written off the car. From an engineering standpoint I've never liked the woodruff key set up on the XU diesels as it maybe strong enough on the lower powered normally aspirated diesels but it's no where near strong enough for the 92 BHP TD's. Much prefer the machined flats as used in other engines lower cambelt toothed drives.
The timing belt stayed intact though but is irrelevent since the damage has been done. Not going to repair as it's a pig with the engine in situ but an engine out job to do it properly and as it's a 14 year old car and a bit dull, it's going to be weighed in as scrap after I remove any useful bits. Having said that after looking on Ebay at Xantia parts there seems to be many sellers with various bits but not many buyers. I've been watching one seller with an engine block with no watchers or bids for the last few months. I guess older Xantias have mostly ended up in the scrappage scheme. The old XU diesels were good in their time but there are now better, cleaner and more economical engines out there. Living in the real world these engines were good for 45 to 47 mpg or 50mpg if driven very carefully. Trouble is the Xantia is a heavy car with big parasitical load on the engine such as the constantly turning hydraulic pump.
But I shouldn't really grumble as the car was bought as a trade in 'sold as seen' back in 2007 with 107,000 miles and history. It's now done 176,500 miles. Also since the front struts were starting to weep LHM at the top seals, and when the car was recovered I noticed the rear wheels were showing signs of radius arm bearing wear, the rear height compensator was damp with LHM I reckon it would have been more expense before next MOT in June. Shame Xantia front struts can't be rebuilt as they're £190 plus vat each side. Oh well, no sentimentality with the Xantia. It's just a car. Plenty more out there but if I go for another Citroen it will be an HDi estate...or an XM