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Old 07-24-2006, 12:37 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Tiny pickups are a pain

Ok, i have to rant a bit after my frustrating battle this weekend.

Saturday, i changed the oil on my ranger, yeah, that all went great, and while putting the new oil filter on, i notice where my starter is, and that turned out to be helpful information about 2 hours later.

Well, here i am, 2 hours later, i hop in my pickup, turn over the key, and all i hear is..
'rreeeeeeeennnnngggggggggggggg'
Again, 'rreeeeeeeennnnngggggggggggggg

Well, from mechanics class, i know this to be my starter... crap!
After struggling with a number of jacks, i finally get the sucker blocked up and crawl under there. Turns out, the screws that hold the solenoid onto the starter to engage the flywheel, have come out, awesome!

So... i go to town with my starter in a box (which was a royal pain to remove and got my head buggered up in the process) and go to the local NAPA, the guy qoutes me $105 for a new starter, or 50 cents for a couple screws, so i take the screws. I get home, just to discover the screws are standard 1/4 blah blah, and i need METRIC, so i go out to a hardware store, and get the right screws, (once again 50 cents) go home, and put it all back together, and voila.... it works once again...
Parts = $1.00
Gas $15.00
A weekend of frustration, priceless....
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Old 07-24-2006, 12:43 AM   #2 (permalink)
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$16.00 in gas, parts and frustration > $200+, for the mechanic to do what you were able to do yourself.
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Old 07-24-2006, 01:31 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I thank my parents again and again for letting me use a beat up '74 VW bug in highschool (at a highschool where parents buying thier children porsches and BMW was common). Now when I need to change brake pads/oil/starter/suspension/etc... I can do it and not get nailed by a shop.

The first thing I do when I get a new car is get the chilton/haynes manual for it.

Of course I do cheat a little... when something is wrong, I usually take it to a place where they give free estimates, since the hardest part of working on cars is diagnosing. Once I have on a piece of paper what's wrong, I can dig in and fix it, then feel good at the difference in cost (and a little guilty for using the shop to get a free estimate. But then I feel good about feeling bad, and I'm all set!)
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Old 07-24-2006, 02:04 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I'm the same way. When I was 11, my dad made me help him change the starter on his 66 bug. He always did his own repairs, and now I do too whenever possible. Even stuff covered on my warranty I'll do myself unless it's major surgery or electronic-related.
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Old 07-24-2006, 01:32 PM   #5 (permalink)
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One thing that bugs me about Haynes, Chilton, etc.. is that they sometimes decide that you can't do something, and start telling you to take it to a repair shop..

Argh!

I used to rebuild transmissions for example, and I am looking for troque specs for the from pump or something, even a diagram, and they tell ya you can't do it and it takes "special" tools, and whatnot.

Then they all have no problem telling you how to rebuild an engine (which is much more difficult to do right in my oppinion) and have all the wiring diagrams, except the ones I am looking for usually.

Bugs me..

If you claim to have a manual based on a complete tear down and rebuild of a car, then actually have all of the info in the manual!!

Don't try to tell me what I am or am not capable of. I bought the book for information, not to be told I can't do it anyway, so they aren't putting the information there.

I do happen to have a shop press now, don't tell me that the bearings are pressed in and I can't do it, and not tell me what size and kind etc they are, and tips and tricks. This is why I buy the manual.
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Old 07-24-2006, 05:24 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Well, as far as manuals go, i have a great internet source for that:

Search.epnet.com

User ID = mtlib_2_871
Password = discovery

This resource has CRAPLOADS of manuals for almost any vehicle on 4 wheels.
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Old 07-26-2006, 09:45 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christian Nelson
One thing that bugs me about Haynes, Chilton, etc.. is that they sometimes decide that you can't do something, and start telling you to take it to a repair shop..

Argh!

I used to rebuild transmissions for example, and I am looking for troque specs for the from pump or something, even a diagram, and they tell ya you can't do it and it takes "special" tools, and whatnot.

Then they all have no problem telling you how to rebuild an engine (which is much more difficult to do right in my oppinion) and have all the wiring diagrams, except the ones I am looking for usually.

Bugs me..

If you claim to have a manual based on a complete tear down and rebuild of a car, then actually have all of the info in the manual!!

Don't try to tell me what I am or am not capable of. I bought the book for information, not to be told I can't do it anyway, so they aren't putting the information there.

I do happen to have a shop press now, don't tell me that the bearings are pressed in and I can't do it, and not tell me what size and kind etc they are, and tips and tricks. This is why I buy the manual.
I ran into the same problem with my 91 Dodge w250 4x4. The Haynes manuals don`t give any information for the Cummings diesel, just gas motors. Good thing google was invented. As far as working on a small truck I have an s-10 Blazer that is a major pain to work on. The 4.3 liter has spark plugs that are next to impossible to get to. I had to use lots of extentions and come in under the fenderwell. I definately don`t like working on small trucks either, but I do because I`m proud to be a cheapass.
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Last edited by pillage; 07-30-2006 at 05:39 PM.
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Old 07-29-2006, 05:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I feel your pain. The plugs on my 90 ranger are a beast to get to. The left 2 arent that bad, but the right 2 are under so much its not even funny. Plus it got the weirdness of a VW. 12 plugs? What the heck? 4 on the block itself, and 8 on the caps. Weird.

But its a great feeling to do it your self. Maybe it was just me and my big grin going down the road, but she seemed to run like new.
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Old 07-29-2006, 09:47 PM   #9 (permalink)
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About the only things my dad worked on, vehicle-wise, were the tractors, rake, bailer, mower, bush-hog, etc. Anything else and he had one of his many friends who had a repair shop work on the trucks and cars. Needless to say, all I can do beyond the basics (add gas, check and change the oil, add washer fluid, add coolant) is replace sparkplugs & their wiring harness and rotate the tires. I'll admit it, I'm worthless when it comes to auto repair. I have an umoving Explorer in the driveway that sounds like a chain is flapping under it, but no idea what to do with it, other than get it towed to a shop.
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Old 07-31-2006, 03:12 AM   #10 (permalink)
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'78 D150. 400 auto, the spark plugs were right under the exhaust manifolds. . .but at least I could sit on the fenderwells and fumble around blindly like on a tenth grade date . . . And the starter that was conveniently shielded from the outside world by the exhaust pipe. . . I miss having a vehicle that I can crawl under without having to jack it up first.
Now I drive a Honda, nothing but Gas Tires and Oil. . .

And Clymer manuals are the absolute worst.
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