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Hardpan Curmudgeon SASS #8967

Chrysler...

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I was talking with a service manager at one repair / tire shop and he was telling that one foreign car (model escapes me now) cost $1800 to change a light bulb. Most of the front of the car has to be dismantled.

 

I have a 77 Corvette that needs a new brake buster. First thing you do is remove the driver's side seat so you can lay on your back to reach mounting bolts that are above the steering column.

 

And you can't go far without a brake buster!

 

Blackfoot ;)

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It runs through all auto design companies, from the drivetrain through the interior.

 

I had a 2008 Dodge Caliber with a manual trannie. The other four versions of the Caoiber had auto trans. The manual was the only version w/o a tach. This means that Dodge designed and made a special gage cluster for the only version that would have used the tach.

 

On the otherside, I have owned seven Ford Rangers and appreciated the heater design. The air is heated by an electrical board with exposed resistors. There is no coolant involved. The hot air is available before the engine heats up.

 

Did anyone here ever change the top coolant tube on a Ford 390, the tube between the top of the thermostat and the radiator? New four-letter words are developed by what looks to be an easy task.

 

Tom:

 

Yes!!!

 

Dad had a '67 Galaxie 500 with the 390; that confounded short section of hose split, and there was simply no way to get a replacement on without removing the neck. Geez...that was 45 years ago, but I can still feel the frustration!!!

 

LL

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Tom:

 

Yes!!!

 

Dad had a '67 Galaxie 500 with the 390; that confounded short section of hose split, and there was simply no way to get a replacement on without removing the neck. Geez...that was 45 years ago, but I can still feel the frustration!!!

 

LL

 

Of course, on a '66 Galaxie 500 with the289, you could climb into the engine compartment, and pull the hood partially down to keep rain off while working on the engine. Not that I have any experience in that.

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I seem to remember on a 1974 Datsun 240-z we had to remove the front tire to replace the headlight

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I waited 'til the Kid got home to finish... he had to climb into the engine bay and sit on the fender to reach the %*&^# distrubutor and plug in the new wires - there was no way I could reach the thing, even standing on a step stool.

 

Knotheads put it on the backside of the engine, under the firewall overhang.

 

When I asked the guy behind the counter at the parts store for the rotor and cap he just gave me a blank stare... and said "I don't think anything that new [2001] uses a cap and rotor. That should be all electronic!" He was quite surprised when he looked it up.

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As a line mechanic for nearly 40 years, I've come to the conclusion that engineers come up with all of this feces to justify their existence. For EVERY great thing developed by a good engineer, there are TEN lousy ideas dreamed up by the idiots who managed to muddle through college and get their engineering degree.

 

Engineers should be REQUIRED to work as line repair technicians for TEN YEARS before they are EVER allowed to design ANYTHING!!!

My best friend expressed this exact sentiment after a frustrating after noon of knuckle skinning profanity.

My wife recommended I buy a Nissan Stanza (I did) -- fine little car but they got all drunked up at the factory and set that engine in sideways.

Two sets of spark plugs, the front four were quick and easy to change out but I had to hire an underfed skinny little nine year old girl to reach in between engine and firewall to change out the back four.

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I have you all beat. Ford 3.5 liter v66 and eco boost v6. The water pump is internal to the motor behind the front cover. The cam chain runs the impeller. Seal goes bad, like they do, and all of the anti-freeze/coolant goes into the engine. And wala, junk motor. The engine is in around 10 different models. 65,000 to 150,000 miles. No warning. Just a sudden overheating problem. The fix is a used motor and $7,000. Which by the way will eventually have the same problem.

 

Just to replace the water pump before it fails, $3,000 as the whole front of the motor has to be taken apart.

We had a perfectly good Ford flex which is now going to the junk yard. Car was worth $7k, replace motor $7k. Not worth it.

 

Ford is silent on the issue.

Ike

 

:o I have one......the wife has an expedition. Both ecoboost :o

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That's another thing that burns my butt. Apparently all newer vehicles require low tire pressure warning system. The system on our F150 is smart enough to tell you that there is a tire that is low but not what tire. First cold day and you get the message. Air up each tire until you get the right one.

 

Just another way government regulations cost us money.

 

We had a tire repaired at one tire shop away from home and the bill included about $20 for a new stem. They said it was the law that a new stem had to be put in any time the tire was broken down. We have had a half dozen tires fixed and a set replaced and the tire shop said nothing about replacing the stem.

Both of my GMC trucks tell which tire.

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I tend to do as much of my own wrenching as I can. I generally can't afford the book labor prices. My favorite fixes so far have been the blend door and temperature actuators on my wife's '11 Enclave. Proper procedure is to remove 75% of the dash to get to them. If you are somewhat agile, drilling a small access hole after removing the glove box can get you where you need to be (which is what I did). The actual part that was the worst was removing the HVAC fuse to go through the system reset. It's on the passenger side up under the dash. You have to practically be a contortionist with very small hands to get it done. I had to use a set of jewelers needle nose pliers and lay on my back on the passenger front floor. The actuators took me about 45 minutes once I figured out how to remove the glove box. the fuse..... took me almost just as long. Those darn boxes should just be under the hood if they aren't easily accessible from the passenger cabin.

 

Anyone who designs cars for a living should be forced to work as a mechanic on each and every part they designed. Maybe then we wouldn't get these stupid designs that the average Joe has a hard time repairing himself.

 

Another one of my favorites was always the back screw on the 80's GM large cap distributors. That one was so close to the firewall on the trucks it could never be seen and could only be removed with the perfect sized screwdriver. I still have that perfect sized screwdriver and that is the only job it's ever been used for.

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My brother used to be an engineer at General Motors, and designs engines by trade. He is also an experienced hot rodder / engine builder / drag racing pit crew member, etc. So unlike most of his colleagues, he actually knows how to turn a wrench. He used to lament at the stupid things his fellow engineers would come up with, not understanding that just because something fits on a schematic does not make it the most sensible place to put it. I recall one specific GM car wherein you had to remove the entire windshield washer fluid reservoir and system just to change the battery. He used to bang his head against the wall over things like that.

Edited by Cyrus Cassidy #45437

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My brother used to be an engineer at General Motors, and designs engines by trade. He is also an experienced hot rodder / engine builder / drag racing pit crew member, etc. So unlike most of his colleagues, he actually knows how to turn a wrench. He used to lament at the stupid things his fellow engineers would come up with, not understanding that just because something fits on a schematic does not make it the most sensible place to put it. I recall one specific GM car wherein you had to remove the entire windshield washer fluid reservoir and system just to change the battery. He used to bang his head against the wall over things like that.

 

I don't know if this is the one you are referring to... but the early 90's Chevy Lumina. Had to remove a fender brace and the reservoir to get at the battery. That was my first car. Hated that one simple fact.

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I waited 'til the Kid got home to finish... he had to climb into the engine bay and sit on the fender to reach the %*&^# distrubutor and plug in the new wires - there was no way I could reach the thing, even standing on a step stool.

 

Knotheads put it on the backside of the engine, under the firewall overhang.

 

When I asked the guy behind the counter at the parts store for the rotor and cap he just gave me a blank stare... and said "I don't think anything that new [2001] uses a cap and rotor. That should be all electronic!" He was quite surprised when he looked it up.

Yeah, pard I didn't know either. Since the late 1990s almost everything has used a computer to tell the cylinders when to fire, instead of a distributor.

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