Sunday, August 29, 2010

New Fangled...


One thing you can count on with this blog is occasionally hearing stories of “back in the day.” I was thinking today about how things have changed with mechanical issues while I was clearing yet another Check Engine warning in the truck with my code reader. There is apparently something the matter with my power steering sensor. I clear it and turn the light off and wait a month for it to turn on again.

Most young people don’t learn how to work on their cars these days. They are too complex and you get specialty tooled to death. There was a time when one could change the oil, plugs, wires, belts, filters, points, condenser and rotor cap in a half hour. It now takes me a half hour just to remove all the crap that is in the way just so I can see where the spark plugs are. Then I have to use all sorts of extensions to unseat them.

I get dizzy just looking at my serpentine belt. For changing the oil one needs to remove or get ready to pour oil on a skid plate that will drip for weeks. I do save time with the electronic ignition, but…

8 Comments:

Blogger Donna said...

I've been hearing Cliff rant for years about how difficult it is to work on cars these days. Maybe that's why he likes to tinker with old tractors. Although the big Oliver from the '70's isn't nearly as simple as the older ones. Good thing he has a brother who works on tractors (and cars and trucks) for a living.

4:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Used to take half an hour to drop the engine out of the VW van. Those were the days...

Moose

5:01 AM  
Blogger darev2005 said...

Yeah. I look under the hood and say "What the hell is that thing? And where are my spark plugs?" I'm still hoping to find and old VW cheap somewhere. Even a twit like me could tinker one of those back together.

7:38 AM  
Blogger g said...

I used to do all that stuff - back in the day. Of course back then all of my vehicles pre-dated 1980.

No days I have vehicles that I've never even seen the engine.

Easiest vehicle I ever worked on was a 1977 toyota pickup.

9:37 AM  
Anonymous auntie said...

i love to say "back in the day". P.S., when you comin' back to work?

7:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I cna't even work on my tractors engine anymore. Hell it took me reading the manual to figure out where the oil came out to change it. You about have to stand on your head and need a special wrench to get the plug off. Hell I used to work for a guy who still used a hand crank tractor.

7:38 PM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Donna talented brothers are good to have. I have one.

Moose, Ad a half hour to get a tow truck in to haul it away.

Darev, some of them don't even look anything like an engine.

g, too bad you missed the 50s and 60s.

Auntie, I work every day.

Anon, the hand crank is the tractor I would like to have.

7:17 AM  
Blogger Mom of Three said...

My first car was a 1971 VW Superbeetle and yes, I could work on every single aspect of that car. It was easy. I might need physical help to drop the engine, but otherwise, I could do everything from change out the alternator from under the back seat to the oil and beyond.

Nowadays, a mechanic has to invest in a $100,000 piece of diagnostic equipment just to be able to service even fairly recent cars. A huge outlay when you consider a little shop like Putnam's, for instance, just two bays. It's partly because of the large number of functions my Montero has that my bug never did, gee, like a CLOCK, just for starters. And AC. And cruise, and the alarm, and, and and. But the suspicious part of me also feels like it's just another racket.

4:33 AM  

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