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car talk thread

Started by rong, December 26, 2011, 08:13:56 PM

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this is the thread to share your car problems and fixes.  ask for advice maybe?  (i heard someone's Van is down)

here is the story of my truck:

it's a 1988 chevy silverado.  well, technically, most of a 1988 chevy silverado.  the saint paul road commission did me no favors with their incessant salting.

i don't drive it much as it seems to break down every time i fill the gas tank.

but a few weeks ago, on midnights, i drove it to work to pick up some nice wooden boxes left over from a huge maintenance project. 
they had decent plywood on them and i think maybe one of them will become a nice toy box for the kid.

anyhow, it got down to about 5 degrees or so that night and come morning i go to start it up and *click*

i figured the battery was shot but after 20 minutes with jumper cables hooked up i figured it might be something else. 

got a coworker to turn the key while i whacked on the starter with a hammer and got the bitch started.

i made it home and resigned myself to park it until nicer weather (read: july).  that is, until my father in-law got me a new starter as an early christmas present.

so, last weekend i started a fire in the garage and proceeded to spend several hours cussing and eating dirt and rust and finally managed to wrestle the new starter in.

after i deemed that the new starter was worthy, i decided to fix the driver's side door.  the inside handle didn't work, so you had to roll down the window and open it from the outside.

thing is, the driver's side window wasn't behaving so i was being forced to exit via the passenger side door. (that window doesn't roll down either)

in the process of fixing the door handle, i ended up getting my window all out of the track and spent a couple more  hours cussing at the door until i finally got everything back together
with a properly functioning window.  shut the door for a test-open and WTF? neither handle works now.  fuck - the bitch is locked!  naturally, i immediately proceed to break the key off in the lock.

luckily i was able to get it unlocked and enjoy a properly (by my standards) functioning driver's side door.

i decided to go get some victory beer and drop off the old starter so my father in-law can get the credit for the core charge.
(he bought it from the local "small town mechanic that works out of his garage, does really good work at reasonable rates and is an all around super nice guy" - i call him bob)

i dropped off the starter, picked up a 12 pack and headed for home.

about 2 miles down the road - KABOOM!!!!! - the loudest backfire i've ever heard in my life.  did you know a backfire can blow your muffler wide open?  neither did i.

truck would turn over, but wouldn't start.  checked the oil and checked (hoped for) a plugged air filter.  oil was good.  air filter was clean.

luckily i was only 1/4 mile from my in-laws.  called my father in law and he towed me back to bob's.

bob said he'd take a look at it the next day.  i got a ride home and drowned my sorrows. 

the next day, i got the good news from bob: he said the wire from the ignition coil was rusted to shit, so he replaced that and gave me a new distributor cap - free of charge.

he also fixed my back brakes (did i mention that i had no back brakes?), so i was out the door for $50.  not too shabby.

i got the truck home and backed up to the wood shed to load up my garage firewood supply and the truck stalls on me.  won't start.  FUCK

i called bob and he figured it was the ignition module, he said he had one i could have.  i went and got it and he gave me a new distributor and ignition coil, too.

i went home and pulled the distributor cap off and disconnected the pick up coil from the ignition module.  and by disconnected, i mean i pulled on the plug and it fell apart in my fingers.

guess we're replacing the whole distributor.  with the help of a friend with a 9/16" crow's foot wrench and and a board placed across the fenders (trying to reach that distributor is a
real bitch for anyone under 8' tall) the new distributor went in pretty easy.  and all seems well.

working skeleton crew at the plant yesterday, so i got the muffler all welded back together yesterday.

best christmas ever.

"a real smart feller, he felt smart"


I think scrap iron is going for $13-$14/100lbs.
Formerly something else...


I have a 1985 Chevy G20 cargo van.  The same one from the old A-Team shows.  I paid $200 for it.  It works pretty well except it has no exhaust.  NO exhaust, as in open headers.  Thus, I get no back pressure.  Leaving the driveway requires revving the engine for about 5-10 minutes or it will die the instant I give it gas to drive away.  Also, being a heavy V8 cargo van with no back pressure, my gas mileage is horrendous.  I don't get miles to the gallon, I get gallons to the mile.  I have to fill her up with Premium gas to help her not die so often.  Also, she is LOUD.  We all call her The Beast, and The Beast wakes up the people in Florida every time my Wisconsin ass fires her up.  Needless to say, my neighbors love me.

I have no fixing her up story, because I haven't fixed her up.

Is there a cheap way to make this thing quieter and give it some back pressure?
There's good news tonight.  And bad news.  First, the bad news: there is no good news.  Now, the good news: you don't have to listen to the bad news.
Zen Without Zen Masters

Quote from: Cain
Gender is a social construct.  As society, we get to choose your gender.


what part of wisconsin?

you might be able to take some steel with holes drilled in it and bolt it over where the headers are supposed to go.  or you could check local salvage yards.

i think running open headers is a good way to start a fire under the hood.
"a real smart feller, he felt smart"