take this opportunity to wish each and all a very merry Christmas and a the best for the
upcoming year! Thanks for sticking around and telling your friends. This has been an
exciting ride and I'm really looking forward to meeting some of you and placing faces on
user names and e-mail addresses when the car hits the road. We're approaching the final
year of the build! We better be anyway!
The number of people who visit this site blows
me away! I remember when the stats reached 20 users a day and I though that was pretty
cool. Now there's been over 15,500 people on the site in a single day! One night when I
checked the web stats there were 662 people viewing the site at the same time! Mind
boggling, isn't it? Keep telling your friends and thanks again!
This was a good month for tools. There's now a nice Milwaukee cut-off saw in the garage
Creek Tool - I'll give them a plug, they deserve it) and my brother lent me a
cool tool that I just have to tell you about!
is a code reader. A couple weeks ago my wife was sitting in her `97 Pontiac Grand Am,
waiting for our youngest daughter. It was cold outside so she had the engine running,
heater, stereo, headlights, etc. The engine had been idling for quite some time when it
shook a few times and the "Check Engine" light came on.
All the gauges were reading okay, good oil
pressure and temperature, so she drove it home to have me look at it. I checked all the
fluids, plug wires and electrical connections and everything seemed alright. The car even
ran great but that damn "Check Engine" light loomed on.
I remembered that my brother recently mentioned
that he bought a diagnostic scanner for 1994 and newer domestic cars so I gave him a call
and he said I could borrow it. Now this was my first experience with one of these and let
me tell you - I'M IMPRESSED!
I plugged it in, (below the dashboard on the
driver's side) hit the "Read" button and it came back with one code error
reading "misfire number 3 cylinder". Too cool!
Since the car had a recent tune-up and seemed to
be running fine now, I chose to take the easy route. I erased the error and I'm waiting to
see if it happens again before pulling plugs, etc. It's now two weeks later and all is
well so far. Engines can sputter when they've been idling for a long time (even if they
haven't). It could be moisture in the fuel or who knows, but it doesn't mean you have to
tear the engine down.
A tool like this one runs about $140 new and
could save you that much the first time you use it. Without it, you'd take your car into
the shop and they'd charge you around $40 just to read the code. Then, depending on how
honest they were, they'd suggest what should be done to correct the "problem".
Very few places would tell you to do nothing and see if it happens again.
Those who argue that computerized cars are so
difficult to work on, probably haven't used one of these. The car actually told me what
went wrong. Granted, if it were a non-computerized car it wouldn't have a "Check
Engine" light to begin with, but hopefully you see my point. Technology can be great.
Tools for Loan!
Remember the metal template I
used to cut the opening for the 3rd brake light?
A guy contacted me the other day and asked if he
could borrow it. I sent it to him and asked only that he reimburse me for shipping and
send it back when he's finished.
After I shipped it to him I started thinking...
I bet there are several guys out there with fiberglass bodied cars who could use the tool.
So, here's the plan;
If anyone would like to borrow it, e-mail me. If someone else has it, I'll hook you
both up (exchange e-mail addresses) and you can work out sending it directly to the
next lender. All I ask is that the instructions stay with it (yes, I wrote some
instructions) and that it finds it's way home someday. It ships great in a Priority
Mail envelope. Let me know if you need it!
Hey, it could be a great way to meet new friends
with the same common interest! What a concept! :)
This template is for a 5-3/4" x 3/16" opening. The light I used is a
"GEARHEAD" brand 3rd brake light. Yogi's part number MOS3L. Make sure your lens
requires this size opening before requesting the template.
|Until next time - Keep the
shiny side up and Happy Holidays!