3.07.2006

mas car stuff

I realize that some of you may be turned off by my recent car related posts,
and I really don't care.

I had smooth sailing replacing my carb the other day,
until I noticed that something connecting the manifold to the choke is broken.
I assume this little piece of metal is called "choke rod" or something equally as simplistic, but since part of it is missing, it is hard to say.
From what I understand,
the thermostat relays temp information to the housing of this missing rod or spring thingy,
and the rod then operates the linkage on the carb to open or close the choke. The fact that is missing is playing a factor on the fuel/air mixture, and starting.
Or so I imagine.

Obviously I am not much of a mechanic,
as you can probably tell by my use of the word, "thingy."

Other missing parts of my car include various hoses,
the functions of which vary from A/C hoses,
(and since the A/C compressor sits uninstalled in my trunk, have no purpose.)
and CAS which is for emmission testing, of which my baby is exempt,
and hoses I think contribute to the rough starts.
Some hoses are capped off, so they remain a mystery.
(Well, that is a dramatic way to say I have no idea where they go.)
I am pretty handy, I like to fix things.
But it is hard to fix things that arent there at all.

I am really enjoying working on my car, though.
There is something strangely sexy about grease under your fingernails,
the smell of oil and sweat,
and of course, the rumble of a well running machine.

There are the little frustrations...
My temp gauge doen't work.
There are a few little cheap parts I need to replace,
almost in a trial and error fashion.
First, the four dollar sending unit,
and then the thermostat, ($12) if I have no luck with that.
Which I haven't
I took out the old sending unit, and the new one didn't want to go in.
The threads don't match because it is either the incorrect part,
or the I need to retread the female end.
I am pretty sure I have to rethread, because the old sending unit was almost identical to the new one, except the first five threads were stripped off.
In fact it looked pretty damn clean and new, which leads me to think her former owner was working his way to the gauge problem the same way I am, without fixing it.
Que sera sera.

3.02.2006

car stuff

I am feeling pretty productive this evening.
I ordered a couple of new parts for the duster,
replaced the master cylinder,
bled the brakes,
and fixed that pesky 'no brake/tail lights' problem.
The best part? No labor costs-but for my own beer and smokes.
Sweet.

I also made an honest woman out of my old girl, and made her road legal.

It is nice to fix your own car.
Something inherently satisfying about it.
Of course, I had my dad's supervision, he digs it though,
we get some bonding time,
and he does no more than drink beer, point, and hand over a wrench or two.
He told me he wants his own project car now... I swear it's contagious.

I have had really good luck with getting parts.
Unlike some mechanics, parts guys build a rapport with you.
They gain nothing for adding unneccesary items to your shopping list.
So they don't.
Once they see you as a returning customer,
they give you more respect, and are more liberal with discounts.

I haven't had 100% perfection though, trust me.
They aren't being rude on purpose, but some guys are just fucking clueless.
Yesterday, a parts guy asked me,
"Nice ride, your boyfriend's?"
Instead of replying, I just gave him 'the look.'
A friend of my parents came by to say hi while I was fighting with a switch.
My face was literally under the brake pedal, and this guy says,
"I wasn't expectin' to see a girl down there." and he laughed. Har-har.

...People, when I am sweating my ass off underneath the dash of a car with black vinyl upolstering, trying to manuever vise grips and a socket wrench in a space half as large as my fingers, fighting with ancient rust covered bolts,
and/or trying to get parts for a 36 year old car at fucking autzone,
please don't fucking annoy me... ok?

It is just not wise on your part.
Really.

BTW... expect me to blather on and on about this car, or fuck off.
Your choice.