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Old 09-15-2020, 08:46 PM   #12736
Clodfobble
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That's not bad at all! Half the time they charge that much just to look at you sideways.
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Old 09-16-2020, 12:09 AM   #12737
monster
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agreed.

Wish I could lend you bikerboi -he's a dab hand on the engine side of things, but you're a tad far away. He bought a "project" bike this summer for $700 including a shitload of spare parts and tools that he had to push to the workshop (my garage), has only spent a few hours actually working on it (several more on research, I think) and maybe $100, but has done all sorts of weird shit like changing the diameter of some holes on the carbs so all the cycles are correct (do I sound like I understood ll that he told me? ) and now he's riding it as his regular bike. Reckons it's worth a few $K. He does similar things with cars too. Weirdo.

oops that turned into a rambling brag, didn't mean it to, but he does impress me. His money sense outside of cars and bikes is for shit tho.....
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Old 09-16-2020, 12:11 AM   #12738
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I was ok with the bill, but it really was just a glorified rear brake job...[/meh] I was expecting fair-to-serious problems.

Not to mention the fact that I know the guy. Prolly charged me extra cuz he knows me!
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Old 09-16-2020, 12:21 AM   #12739
monster
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$200 for any brake job is pretty unheard of up here.....
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Old 09-16-2020, 01:01 AM   #12740
xoxoxoBruce
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Not bad for a drum job but I wonder what took so long. I guess he figured he could slide it down the priority list because you couldn't come yell at him... he had your car.
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Old 09-16-2020, 06:21 AM   #12741
Griff
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monster View Post
agreed.

Wish I could lend you bikerboi -he's a dab hand on the engine side of things, but you're a tad far away. He bought a "project" bike this summer for $700 including a shitload of spare parts and tools that he had to push to the workshop (my garage), has only spent a few hours actually working on it (several more on research, I think) and maybe $100, but has done all sorts of weird shit like changing the diameter of some holes on the carbs so all the cycles are correct (do I sound like I understood ll that he told me? ) and now he's riding it as his regular bike. Reckons it's worth a few $K. He does similar things with cars too. Weirdo.

oops that turned into a rambling brag, didn't mean it to, but he does impress me. His money sense outside of cars and bikes is for shit tho.....
That is a cool brag. If he's ever bored he can come rebuild my Dad's Farmall H.
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Old 09-16-2020, 01:32 PM   #12742
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clodfobble View Post
That's not bad at all! Half the time they charge that much just to look at you sideways.
You can save a lot of money by walking around to face them. Mechanics hate that one simple trick.
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Old 09-17-2020, 03:45 PM   #12743
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Noted.
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Old 09-22-2020, 08:30 PM   #12744
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My friends, my family.

Thanks guys.
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Old 10-03-2020, 11:22 AM   #12745
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wear scarves, with summer here the same 5 dresses, but different scarves, changes it up!

Also, keep a list of things you need. Great idea...

Also have a couple go - to outfits, when you can't find anything else.. I have some that are comfy and cute, so when I'm feeling bloated or the days that nothing works, they always do!
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Old 10-03-2020, 02:59 PM   #12746
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetalHead View Post
wear scarves, with summer here the same 5 dresses, but different scarves, changes it up!

Also, keep a list of things you need. Great idea...

Also have a couple go - to outfits, when you can't find anything else.. I have some that are comfy and cute, so when I'm feeling bloated or the days that nothing works, they always do!

Bit of a non-sequitur there, Metalhead, but welcome!


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Old 10-05-2020, 06:35 PM   #12747
glatt
 
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Fixed the car.

This is the 25 year old one. It has had issues over the years, but was always reliable. Runs like a top.

Well, over the last week or two, it has simply not started. Intermittently. Sometimes it starts. Sometime it doesn't even crank. Just a single click. MOTHERFUCKER. And then a few tries later, it does start.

This is the kind of thing that can cost real money, and can be caused by a number of things.

The battery voltage seemed a little low, so I pulled it out and took it to Autozone. They tested is and said it was good. So not the battery. That was too bad. I figured a battery would be easy to do, and fairly cheap. Kudos to Autozone for not selling me a single thing.

I remembered after we got the automatic transmission cars, I would sometimes get into this Prizm and try to start it without pressing in the clutch, and it would make no noise, just a single click. So I kept thinking about the clutch. Maybe the car didn't think I was pressing down on the clutch.

So I did some research, and watched a few diagnosing videos on youtube. Everybody eventually mentions the starter, after discussing the battery and corrosion on cables. The starter on this car is buried in the hardest spot to reach. Under the intake manifold at the back of the engine, over the suspension, and catalytic converter. Really close to the fire wall. Basically impossible to see, test, or get at without taking everything apart. I so didn't want to deal with it, which means a mechanic would also charge two arms and a leg to do it too.

But that clutch pedal. I kept thinking about the clutch pedal. I've got the factory manual and the chilton's manual, and I looked up the location of the safety start override switch on the clutch pedal, and read about it. Looked at circuit diagrams. It could be the issue, but unlikely. The car doesn't want you to try to start it when it is already running, because you will cause major damage. So they have an override switch so it won't start if you don't press in on the clutch.

Then I went to ToyotaNation web forum to see if they had any insights. First I did I quick search, and somebody mentioned the clutch pedal as a possible problem when a car wouldn't start, and also mentioned bits of broken plastic on the drivers floor as an indicator.

How could I forget? I saw bits of plastic on the driver's floor the other day. I assumed it was just trash my son had left there. BUt there were definitely bits of plastic that I couldn't identify.

So I went out and crawled into the driver's side with a mirror and flashlight and looked up under the dash as I pressed the clutch in with my hand.

The clutch pedal normally has a cushioned bracket on the arm that pushes against the switch. My cushion is completely missing, and the funny thing is the hole in the metal bracket that holds the cushion lines up almost perfectly with the poky bit of the clutch pedal switch, so when you push the clutch all the way to the floor, the metal bracket on the clutch pedal goes around the switch, not depressing it. If you exert a little sideways pressure on the pedal, then the metal plate depresses the switch, and the switch engages.

That explains my intermittent start issue. Sometimes the metal bracket was pressing on the switch when I pressed on the pedal jut slightly differently. Often it didn't.

For what it's worth, My son was recently learning how to drive stick on this car, and he was really giving it a beating. I bet the 25 year old rubber/plastic cushion broke during that process.

So I ordered a replacement cushion from Toyota for $20 for a $1 part, but in the meantime I took a little electrical tape and a felt button and taped a makeshift cushion to the clutch pedal to engage the switch. I tried starting the car 15-20 times, and it started every single time.

So long story short is the car was unreliable for a week or so and had a major problem that would likely have cost more than the car was worth to fix, and I fixed it for free with crap I had lying around the house.

/Happy camper.
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Old 10-05-2020, 06:50 PM   #12748
BigV
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Bravo!

Excellent work, detective and mechanic. Oh, and you write well, too.
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Old 10-05-2020, 09:15 PM   #12749
Gravdigr
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Good on ya, Glattman!

Prizm. I thought Geo (Chevy) made Prizms.

Nevermind, I just Wiki'd it, and (Today I Learned) found out a Geo Prizm is just a Toyota Sprinter/Corolla.
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Old 10-06-2020, 03:40 AM   #12750
xoxoxoBruce
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glatt View Post
The car doesn't want you to try to start it when it is already running, because you will cause major damage. So they have an override switch so it won't start if you don't press in on the clutch.
If you press on the clutch pedal the car isn't moving but the engine still is. I'm sure they use one of several ways to prevent you from engaging the starter into the running engine(flywheel).

That switch on the pedal disconnects the starter(engine) from the wheels so you won't squeeze somebody between the car and the wall or another car.

Regardless, you done good, those switches are a pain in the ass see, even harder to get to. My truck has one on the brake pedal so it won't start without my foot on the brake and it's an automatic.
I'm sure you made the kid happy which is a second feather in your cap.
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