Removing the Secondary Catalytic Converters from an Aston Martin DB9

Removing the Secondary Catalytic Converter from a DB9 isn’t something you’d do every day unless you are working on the exhaust system.  For me, I’m working on installing a ‘Secondary CAT Delete Kit’ that supposedly improves the performance and sound of the car [read about that project in my other article here].   The first step in that process is to remove the original secondary CAT, and that’s what this article is about. Continue reading “Removing the Secondary Catalytic Converters from an Aston Martin DB9”

Removing the Shear Panel from an Aston Martin DB9

Shear Panel

One of the terrific aspects of any Aston Martin is the handling.  Part of the magic to that is creating a car that is ‘stiff’, meaning that it doesn’t twist and flex during cornering or over bumps.  The DB9 is no exception, and part of that body stiffness is created by a thick aluminum plate underneath the bottom of the car in the center of the vehicle, the “Shear Panel”.   There is nothing fancy to it, it’s just a metal plate bolted up rigidly to the left and right hand sides of the transmission/drive shaft/torque tube tunnel the runs from front to back.  The tunnel itself is a weakness to the car, so the plate bolts across the bottom of the tunnel to make the vehicle stiffer.

Why would you care about this?  You probably wouldn’t unless you need to do some work on the things that are up inside that tunnel, above the Shear Panel.  In particular, the dual exhaust pipes run along there.   For me, I am planning on installing a ‘Secondary Cat Delete Kit’ which is a fancy way of saying removing the two rearmost catalytic converters and replacing them with a straight pipe kit offered from several vendors (more about that in a future article).   Any maintenance to the center portion of the exhaust system will require removal of the Shear Panel.

The good news is that it’s easy enough to remove, and only takes about 10 minutes once you have the car off the ground. Continue reading “Removing the Shear Panel from an Aston Martin DB9”

Installing a Velocity AP GT4 Airbox Delete Kit in an Aston Martin DB9

Getting Ready to Delete My Airbox

If you read my article on Power to Weight Ratio (check it out here) I was trying to work out where the best ‘bang for the buck’ was on performance upgrades for my DB9.  One of the standout items was a simple change to a high flow performance air filter.   These allow the engine to breath easier with less intake restriction.  The claim was that they can add horsepower and have the added benefit of they are reusable so you can easily save more than they cost after a few service intervals.  Win-Win.   I figured it was time to try a set out. Continue reading “Installing a Velocity AP GT4 Airbox Delete Kit in an Aston Martin DB9”

Stripping the Paint Off an Aston Martin DB9 Grill

Failing Paint on Grill Bars

Whether you are repainting, polishing or wrapping the finish of your Aston Martin Grill Bars, you’ll need to strip them of the original paint first.   This article is one of a series where I am refinishing the tattered look of my entire grill, and I’ve elected to use vehicle wrap to apply a new finish to mine.   Stripping the old paint without messing up the metal underneath took me a while to figure out a fool proof process, but I nailed it and will share that here. Continue reading “Stripping the Paint Off an Aston Martin DB9 Grill”

How to Disassemble the Grill from an Aston Martin DB9

Failing Paint on Grill

Why would you want to take the grill apart from your DB9?  To refinish it of course.  The painted anthracite finish on my grill bars has begun to ‘flake’ off the metal, and it looks terrible.  When I approached an Aston Martin Dealer they did what you’d expect – recommended the only solution was to replace it.  But, and there is a big ‘but’, the original 7-bar grill is no longer available.  The only factory solution is to purchase a later model 5-bar grill and retrofit it.   I am sure the 5-bar grill would look fine, but I am also a bit of a purist that struggles with straying too far from original.  I prefer factory sport pack wheels compared to full custom after market.  I prefer factory color options.   I’d prefer to keep my car outfitted with the 7-bar grill, so I decided I’d learn how to remove, refinish and reinstall it. Continue reading “How to Disassemble the Grill from an Aston Martin DB9”

Power Window Not Working in an Aston Martin DB9

The drivers side power windows stopped working in my DB9.  This is the second time this problem has happened and both times I now realise it has been due to the battery being allowed to run flat. The first time followed a period of 3 weeks where I didn’t drive the Aston and this latest time being when I forgot to disconnect my dashcams. Continue reading “Power Window Not Working in an Aston Martin DB9”

Winter Preparation – Windscreen Washer Fluid in your Aston Martin DB9

Following on from Steve’s article on “Storing your Aston Martin” I have just been preparing Aston2209 (my DB9) for the winter and as we enter this period those of us who live in parts of the World where the temperature will surely drop below freezing its time to check all our Aston fluids are fit for purpose.

This article concerns the windscreen (windshield) washing system something that is often forgotten until we try to use it and find its frozen solid. What needs to be done, if like Aston 2209 you have a Summer formula wash installed, is that this has to be removed and a low temperature wash water installed. Continue reading “Winter Preparation – Windscreen Washer Fluid in your Aston Martin DB9”

Changing the Wiper Blades on an Aston Martin DB9

Deteriorated Drivers Side Blade with Winglet

Whether you drive a Toyota Corolla or a DB9, eventually you need to change your wiper blades.  They are made of rubber, and rubber deteriorates.  Time, Sunlight, Dry Climates all take their toll on it.  In any normal car changing your wiper blades isn’t rocket science, but of course in an Aston, there is a bit of a trick to it.  This article will share the tricks so you can do it quick! Continue reading “Changing the Wiper Blades on an Aston Martin DB9”

Storing your Aston Martin

[Photo credit – Damien Morley]
Each year as winter approaches many owners look to put their precious Aston away for a few months of hibernation.   I’m fortunate enough to live in a climate where I can drive my DB9 all year round (I’m not bothered by her getting wet in the few days of California rain we have each year).  If you are going to put your Aston away for more than a month, there are definitely a bunch of steps you should take so that she’s all ready to hit the road in the spring. Continue reading “Storing your Aston Martin”

Skid Plate Options for an Aston Martin DB9

Creeping into driveways on the Diagonal

I’ve jacked up the paint on my Aston Martin DB9’s nose more times than I can remember.   Scraaaaaaape.   Speed bumps, drive way curbs, parking curbs, they are everywhere trying to scratch up the nose on my car.  After 6 years of year round daily driving, it didn’t look pretty.

At a visit a to my dealer I was talking to the Tim Lyons (master mechanic) and he told me he had NEVER seen a customer car that wasn’t scraped up underneath.   Made me feel a little better that is wasn’t just me.

My car was recently completely repainted and I now had the opportunity to do something to protect my perfect and virgin paint.  I set about finding a ‘skid plate’ solution to shield the nose of my car. Continue reading “Skid Plate Options for an Aston Martin DB9”