13 May 2015

"The hard part was opening the package"

That's what I like to hear!

What is your reaction when some one tells you "You have a tail light out."?  My standard response is "Thank you for letting me know.  We'll get it fixed pronto!"  This was exactly the scenario earlier in the week.

Last night I researched the replacement part number and repair procedure.  Looks like it's a no-tools needed replacement, though the pictures in the Haynes manual weren't very clear (to me)*.

The SCQueen picked up a couple new bulbs while out and about today.  The SCSon agreed to take a crack at putting them in.  Rather than telling him how to do it, I pointed him to the repair manual.  He found the relevant section and enthusiastically replied  "A picture book.  Cool! I can do this!

I inquired about the repair upon returning home.  He replied with "I didn't know which side you wanted replaced so I did both.**" and then the title quote.

One day he will realize the reason I asked him to replace the bulbs stretches far beyond "free maintenance" for me.  The more important lesson is "the engineers have made some of these jobs real easy!  you CAN do this yourself."

A college roommate apparently had no clue ordinary people could make simple mechanical repairs.  I came home from school one day grousing about a flat bicycle tire.  As I pulled out the tools & patch kit he looked at me bewildered and asked "what are you doing?"  "There is a hole in the tube... I need to patch it."  "And you can do that YOURSELF?" he asked incredulously.''

It dawned on me roomie and I grew up in vastly different worlds.  His dad was a furniture salesman and paid others to do what he didn't understand.    His dad understood deal making.  My dad was a hands on fix-it-yourself-engineer and how stuff works.  He grew up on a farm and there was no one else.  I learned at his knee and been patching tires since learning to ride.

I hope to pass along the latter lesson to the SCSon.  You CAN do this!

* This is not a knock on the images in Haynes or any repair manuals.  I've taken extensive "before" pictures prior to extensive invasive automotive surgery and found my own pics significantly less than 100% useful in the "after" reassembly phase.  Or maybe it's just me and he interprets the pics significantly better.  If so, good on him!

** My bad for not being clear.  He'd helped me verify the problem so I thought he knew.  But "replace both" was my actual intent.  We're replacing a possibly 24 YO light bulb.  Just how long do you expect the other one to last?   The expensive part of this job is the labor.  We're already in there, just replace the pair.

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