04 April 2012

Car down

I recently posted about  selling the truck and transferring all it's problems to someone else.  I've found a spare car the height of luxury because when the daily driver goes down, I still have a car to drive.

Well that scenario has reared it's ugly head all too soon.  The U-joints in the drive shaft are coming apart - in pieces.  The vibration while driving was enough to give me concern that something would break.

Tonight I spent an hour getting the car high enough off the ground and stable enough to work underneath.  The diff bolts came free with relative ease (Have I mentioned what awesome stuff Kroil is for freeing bolts?*)  It took a bit more work to get it free of the car as the exhaust system passes under the shaft.

Inspecting the shaft shows the front U-Joint is junk.  It's frozen in one axis and it has nearly 1/8th inch play in the other.

So now I an wheel-less until another 'shaft is installed.  Fortunately the Day-Job(tm) takes Good Friday off as the floating holiday so this will be a three day weekend.  If I can get another drive shaft, I can have it back together tomorrow.

In the meantime, it'll be a flashback 30 years or so... Riding the 10 speed.  Fortunately, the Day-Job(tm) is only a mile or so down the road.  I can ride or even walk that in a reasonable amount of time.  [And $DEITY knows, I *NEED* the exercise.]  So I won't even be asking the SO to give me a ride to work tomorrow. 

At least these days the SCQueen's car is still operational so I don't have to ride the bike to the nearest parts store.  Many moons ago there was a 10PM ride to AutoZone 2 miles distant to retrieve the drain plug on a radiator.  It was a swap deal - drop off the old one or pay the core charge.  I got the new one home and installed only to realize there wasn't a drain plug.  I had to ride back to the store at 10pm to reclaim my plug before it shipped out the next AM.

In the aircraft world there is a term "AOG" - Aircraft On Ground.  That's a "high priority" signal to those involved that this is an urgent circumstance.  As in this airplane can't move until this situation is resolved.  Need parts NOW!  The car is kind of in the opposite situation, in the air up on jacks until the part is replaced.   Perhaps we should call it COJ - Car on Jacks!  Same meaning though, it's not going anywhere until this problem is resolved. i've put out feelers for the part, but time is of the essence.   I'm really only interested in parts available locally - I don't have time to have it shipped.

* I have never had any contact with the maker of Kroil as far as I know.  They didn't pay for this mention in any way.  I bought my can and it will last me this life and probably the SCSon's as well.  It's phenomenal stuff for freeing stuck bolts & stuff.  In this case the bolts were almost certainly assembled at the factory some time in 1991.  Today, > 20 years later,  they all came apart with the squeeze of one hand after a spray of Kroil.   This is not scientific evidence as I didn't even try to separate the bolts prior to application of Kroil.  See also the broken stud removal.  #include still applies.

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