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oldmangrimes last won the day on March 29

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About oldmangrimes

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  • Birthday 04/12/1974


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  1. Age is relative. When I was in high school in 1992, I was driving a 1972 Chevelle and I thought it was an "old" car because it was 20 years old and older than most of my friends' cars. Now my '95 vert is 24 years old, so I guess I shouldn't be surprised that young people think it's old and don't know what it is. Unfortunately my vert is back in my garage, even though I changed the wheel bearing it still sounds bad. There are multiple sounds going on, I need to do some investigating before driving it again. I'm suspicious of (in no particular order): 1. The transmission mount (slight clunk when shifting from Park, the bottom motor mount is new last year but I've never changed the transmission mount) 2. The other three wheel bearings (I've changed them all in the last few years, but the new humming wasn't eliminated when I rotated the tires and changed the front passenger side wheel bearing this year). 3. The transmission itself (assuming #1 and #2 don't fix all the sounds). Having the driver's axle yanked out while at speed last fall couldn't have been good for it. The axle seal doesn't leak with the new axle and it shifts fine, but if it's not the the wheel bearing or the tires humming/whirring, then maybe it's the transmission? I've had wheel bearings go bad on me a few times before, but this time it sounds a little different and doesn't change as much while cornering. 4. The alignment is still off, the steering wheel wasn't straight after that kid aligned it the first time, I adjusted both tie rod ends at home afterwards to straighten the wheel but it's still not perfect and it seems to pull to the right a little. I should just pay the money for a good shop to align it instead of the cheap place. 5. The brakes (there's a periodic sound with each wheel rotation, a dragging brake might be combining with the bad alignment to cause the drift, but the wheels aren't warm after driving). 6. The steering rack. The steering wheel hasn't "felt" right since I replaced everything over the winter. I thought that the new tie rods would make the steering feel tighter, and it does a little, but it just feels "off" now. The steering "weight" feels inconsistent now, to the point it makes me worried while cornering sometimes. I don't have the time or money to replace the steering rack this summer, maybe next winter I will. Power steering fluid level is ok, pump is quiet. Of course all of these could be diagnosed by a professional, and if I can't figure it out myself I may have to do that. I just have a hard time paying someone else to do stuff that I think (key word, "think") I should be able to do myself. I figure a mechanic would check out my car and basically just say "yeah everything is worn out on this old thing, plus what the hell did you do to it!?", lol. I'm honestly embarrassed to bring my 'vert to a mechanic, but that's a me problem not a car problem. Did I mention the mpg are down about 5%? That could be related, or could be something else. I'm not too worried about it, I'm guessing that whatever is making the sounds is probably affecting the mpg. Or it could be the bad EGR, but that's another discussion for another day . . .
  2. I had a bad start to my day, but I'm very lucky it could have been much worse. Thank God nobody was hurt and I didn't cause an accident. I had just replaced my lower engine mount a couple days ago, which was causing the engine to move around a lot. Unfortunately it wasn't my only problem, and this morning when I tried to drive the Cutlass to work, I made it about 10 miles but after taking a 40mph sweeping curve to the left, on a two-lane road, my right front suspension failed. Luckily I had straightened out of the turn, otherwise I would have rolled the car down into a ditch, or worse. I tried to steer to the left into a driveway off the road, but my forward momentum wasn't enough to get there, obviously dragging the wheel sideways, jammed into the wheel well. I was blocking most of the road, but was able to get out of the car and flag down oncoming traffic. Luckily one of the first guys that stopped to help had some flares and set them up. Another guy with a truck and a tow rope hooked onto the A-arm and dragged me 20 feet off the road into the driveway. I was a few miles from town, so I had to wait a while for a tow-truck. The sheriff came, added a couple flares, wished me luck, and left. The first tow-truck was a flatbed, and the guy tried but couldn't get the car up onto the flatbed without causing more damage, so he called in another standard lift-truck to do the job. Eventually that guy got the car secured and towed it back to my house and he managed to place it in my garage, where it will sit while I decide what to do with it. I haven't had more than 2 minutes to look at it up close, I had to run to work. The ball joint popped out, the axle was destroyed, the transmission dumped a ton of fluid, (which while the car was being towed ran back along the entire undercarriage and coated everything back to the rear bumper), the tire is probably not safe to use, and I'm sure a ton of other parts would need to be replaced. The hub has less than 5k on it, but it took a big side-load so might be shot. The brake lines were stretched, the plastic trim on the wheel well was slightly damaged, the front strut/spring assembly was twisted out of place, the tie rod was damaged, etc. Of course I SHOULD scrap the car, it's got 235k miles and has some other problems that aren't related. But I really don't WANT to get rid of it, it's got a new top and I'd planned on keeping it forever. I'm going to take a few days to calm down and think about it, and I can leave it in my garage for awhile. But we only have one parking spot in my attached garage and my wife won't be happy about going out in the weather all winter. The good news is that the belly stayed off the pavement, the fender metal seems ok, and the car might be savable. I can manage the bolt-on stuff, but I'm mostly worried about the transmission/axle. And of course since this failure happened, I'll replace everything on the drivers side too, as I'm sure it all is due for replacement. Unfortunately I won't have time to dig into it and assess anything until after Christmas, so I'll post an update in a couple months. I don't have the money to take it to a shop now, although I may have to eventually if I can't do it myself. In the meantime, I'd appreciate any advice from you guys. This isn't a show car, just a driver, so I'm looking at ways to get it safely back on the road in time for next summer for less than $1000. I can take other pictures if you want to see different angles, but I won't have time for much disassembly as I've got another car to drive and other projects screaming for my time and money.
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