Your grief makes it sound as if it's time for a new vehicle, Winnie.
Once the repair bills get within 1/2 of the new vehicle payments, it's
time. What did your used car cost you last year?
I drove that old F-150 for 17 years, and by the time I climbed into
the new ('07) Tundra, the differences in technology were absolutely
astounding. I'm still not over the shock nearly 3 years later.
We're all here because we're not all there.
Spot on, Larry.
I am the 'go to' guy for car repairs for several friends.
No doubt it is past time for them to replace rather than
repair. For now, repairs are 'way cheaper than replacement
for all of us, especially with 'free labor'.
Repair wise, personally? Nearly nada for the last decade.
Just oil changes and the occasional set of tires. I have had two
brake issues, tire tread scrubbing, excessive oil use, disconnected
seat adjuster motor, broken wheel studs and a TPMS problem caused by
(charitably) incompetent mechanics but no trouble that is a
function of 'defects in (Toyota Motors) material or workmanship'.
If it weren't for mechanics, my cars would've run *much* better.
I *did* have to replace the alternator in a new-to-me truck
a couple days ago. Easy peasy.
One of the tiny advantages of being 'of a certain age' is the thrill
of starting a fuel-injected car on a cold morning.
What I don't miss are the lost days repairing my own vehicles, skinned
knuckles, dirty fingernails/hands, soiled clothing, and vehicle which
smells of same.
That totally sucks. I hope you reported those beasts to the
management, the regulating agency (NIASE ++), and the various gods in
order for the fidiots to reap their entire kharmic reward for said
I replaced the starter in the old Ford at the home improvement store
I finally have a vehicle with arid conditioning, and I've used it well
I absolutely know of what you preach, sir. I get that grin on those
few mornings down in the teens up here. I always did hate those
damned carburetors, especially Holleys which would never rebuild
We're all here because we're not all there.
I started with a 8 year old 1950 Austin. Any time the temperature got
below 0 F. forget the starter because the bendix wouldn't engage.
Colder than -20 F., take off the air cleaner and dump in a half cup of
gasoline then flip it over with the crank. Below -40 forget it unless
you were close enough to the house to have the block heater plugged
in. My brother had a 1948 Willy's half ton that wouldn't start below
freezing without two heat lamps and the block heater. With the Model
"A", you just filled the rad with hot water and poured another tea
kettle of boiling water over the manifold, of course you had to re
warm it every couple hours if you were visiting during colder weather
to keep it from freezing up before you got home and drained the water
(anti freeze was expensive and hard to find in the late '40s and most
rads leaked too badly to use it!)
I spent the first half of my life in that mode.
It seems every weekend was taken up with repairing
the car so I could get to work Monday.
All non-optional problems, too.
Man, that was No Fun.
That is a quandary.
Do you really complain about someone who
knows who you are and where you live?
Swapped a water pump for SWMBO in a town 70 mi. away that I'd
never visited before. On a week night. Drove the car back, too.
Imagine contributing to society to the same extent that
Willis Haviland Carrier did. Boggles the mind.
I positively *love* air conditioning.
When I'm alone, I set it for 60° and 2% RH.
Amazing! What are those minus signs, anyway? Me no grok. ;)
I've always wondered why folks put up with such ghastly weather. When
I was a kid, I lived in the South where the heat and humidity mugged
you. As an adult, I've chosen to live in temperate climes,
thankyouverymuch, and I'm put out by a couple inches of snow which
sticks here every few years. You guys, with your meters of snow half
the year, every year, amaze me. Self-inflicted wounds, eh?
We're all here because we're not all there.
Learned the value of a car alarm in the parking lot of a Channel (big
long defunct hardware chain for those who are too young to know the
name). Corvette wouldn't start, alarm going. Looked under dash, needed
Phillips screwdriver. Into Channel, got screwdriver (lights flashing
and horn honking and siren whooping the whole time). Removed cover
panel. Couldn't see anything. Into Channel for flashlight. This went
on for a while--finding another fastener type to remove and going into
Channel for a tool that fit it. Finally found the alarm module and
pulled it--silence, but no start. A good hour and a half had gone by
before that stage, with the horn honking and the lights flashing and the
siren sirening on one of the most stole cars in America, and _nobody_
even walked up and kibitzed, let alone the cops arriving. (Yeah--I
shoulda pulled the battery connector--was suffering from target fixation
I guess). Finally figured out the right combination of wires to short
together to get it to start (this was in the days before the alarm
system was microprocessor controlled, it was just a dumb relay system)
and drove home.
Kids today don't know how good they've got it.
I used to do that. Got a car full of dents for my trouble.
defunct hardware chain for those who are too young to know the name). Corvette
wouldn't start, alarm going. Looked under dash, needed Phillips screwdriver.
Into Channel, got screwdriver (lights flashing and horn honking and
Into Channel for flashlight. This went on for a while--finding another fastener
type to remove and going into Channel for a tool that fit it. Finally found the
alarm module and pulled it--silence, but no start. A good hour
flashing and the siren sirening on one of the most stole cars in America, and
_nobody_ even walked up and kibitzed, let alone the cops arriving. (Yeah--I
shoulda pulled the battery connector--was suffering from target
together to get it to start (this was in the days before the alarm system was
microprocessor controlled, it was just a dumb relay system) and drove home.
Pal of mine called me with 'truck trouble'.
The dealer had installed a little electronic box
that prevented the truck from cranking. Just a harmless
The ignition circuit worked, though. I hotwired the
starter and followed him across town to his favorite
mechanic, with visions of having to crawl under the
truck in the middle of an intersection.
Luckily, he got it fixed without any further drama.
We forget quickly.
Personally, I: * Haven't needed to adjust breaker points or valves in literally decades.
* Never had a tire 'blowout'.
* Haven't had to manually adjust brakes in 20 years.
* Haven't had to use a manual choke in 37 years.
* Haven't had to synchronize carburetors in 35 years.
* Never once had to manually adjust ignition advance. (Ford 'Model A' reference).
My first 510 Datsun gave me so much trouble, and broke down so many
times, when I replaced it, instead of selling it, I hauled my
oxy/acetylene rig out in the driveway and cut the damned thing up into
little pieces. I found that very therapeutic.
As a side benefit, the new car (a 510 wagon) took notice, and I had
virtually no problems with it!
I remember putting a Heathkit breakerless ignition on my first Volvo one
winter after having to file the points in a snowstorm to get the thing
to start. Never had to touch that so and so again. I'm trying to
remember when was the last time I drove my Dad's pickup truck--it would
be the last thing I drove with a manual choke--probably some time in the
'70s--it was a stripped '67 F-100 (so stripped that it needed a dealer
option valve installed to turn the heat _off_)--he traded his old
Studebaker for it when Studebaker went under and kept it until he died.
Found my carb synchronizer in the garage the other day. There's a big
spider living in it so I left it be.
My first 510 was just a lemon. Lot of stupid shit, like driving down the
freeway, and suddenly totally dead engine, as if I'd turned off the
ignition. The points arm had broken! Luckily it had a funky dual points
setup for CA emissions, I just jumpered the wire over to the other
points and got home. Both brothers and my Dad had also owned 510s and
had few problems with them. The one I cut up was a whole lot better
after I tossed the anemic stock engine and installed a SSS engine
(hotter cam, dual SU sidedrafts). And frankly, part of cutting it up was
because my roomate nailed the driver side door, messing things up enough
the door wouldn't fully latch. (he joked I was welcome to hit his, but
didn't appreciate it when the following winter, I did trying to get out
of the driveway in 6" of snow... lol) I'd already bought the wagon and
was about to swap the SSS engine over. So I just sold the engine out of
the wagon instead of putting it in the first 510.
I really liked the 510 and wish something that simple was made today,
with a modern engine and FI, but without all the rest of the crap modern
cars are festooned with. It was a simple and basic vehicle and easy to
work on. With good sway bars, shocks, and tires, it would give much more
expensive cars of the day fits on a twisty road (with the SSS engine
Ok, so gotta mention my Dad's 510. He stuffed a turbo Capri engine into
it and upped the boost. That was a rocketship. I got a chance to really
wind it out once, and totally dusted a 'muscle car' on the freeway.
Speedo topped out at 120 and I was well past that and still
accelerating. Low pressure from airflow coming off the windshield caused
the driver's window to pull out far enough I could see light over it. I
decided I'd humbled the other guy more than enough and backed off before
I ended up wadding it into a form fitted coffin.
"Gerald Miller" wrote in message
In Flin Flon Manitoba there is an old gasoline engined
'tractor' that was
used to haul freight in the winter. According to the info
board on it
they used kerosene in the cooling system!
Dad said that at -35 F. we didn't have to go to school because the
wood fired furnaces couldn't heat the building enough to enable the
kids to take their coats off.
My winter fun consists of running a couple tanks of gas through my
snow blower. I do the neighborly thing to a half dozen driveways, then
clear the road back to the curb upstream so that by the time the
snowplow hits my driveway, there is no snow left on his blade. Next
come paths to the compost bins and shed and an area for Puppy to
relieve herself without getting her tummy cold. One of my greatest
joys is blowing the snow from my eight car driveway over the hedge
onto the boulevard of the side street (the joy of owning a corner
When I got a new snow blower 25 years ago, it was delivered after I
had cleared my drive and the one next door so I went across the road
and did one that hadn't been cleared all winter. The poor old
(mid-european) Grandmother wanted to know how much she owed me while I
tried to get across to her that I just wanted to play in her snow.