Thursday, August 28, 2008

Hoodwork continues

I have my doubts that anybody reads this but what the hell, I might as well continue in my own private Idaho. I'd always wondered what that phrase "private Idaho" ment. Hail mother internet, click on the link for the Urban Dictionary definition.

Anyway I worked from home yesterday, before work I put some POR-15 body filler on the dings and dents on the 240D's new hood. The stuff is basically fiberglass resin jelly with some fiber material in it. Its not bad but hard to get really smooth, should be strong though and its supposed to stick really well to POR-15.
At lunch I sanded down the filler (my $10 Harbor Freight sander worked well) and used some actual bondo brand filler to skim the low spots. Its important to not use a lot of bondo as its not flexible and will crack and fall off if used in big globs.
After work I sanded the bondo down and hit all those spots with POR-15 again. This time I painted out farther onto the exisiting body work. I also tried to flow a little extra into any little imperfections I found. I'm using POR-15 gas tank filler which is I think just thin POR-15 and it seems to work well for this.

Anyway hopefully today or tomorrow I can sand one more time (need to buy more sandpaper) and start rolling on the color coats.


Tuesday, August 26, 2008


I'm a big fan of odd things, if I weren't would I drive a diesel car? I'm not generically a big fan of Jay Leno which itself is kind of unusual since he's pretty odd. That said he's got a cool website and one of his newer videos is pretty amazing:

Its a Tatra T87. I'd never heard of Tatra before, but its a Chech car with a 3l aircooled v8, how neat is that? Check out his site, theres lots of other interesting cars. I like the Packard twin six and the old Saab especially. Only a couple Mercedes though and they aren't diesels, maybe I should see if Jay is interested in my 240D?

Saturday, August 23, 2008

The Quantum

So it was a crazy idea, fly out to Iowa, pick up a 25 year old car, and drive it 1300+ miles home. I didn't start to get really nervous until the day before when I starting thinking the whole thing through. Worse my wife wanted to come with me. Its one thing to beat the snot out of yourself driving 1300+ miles, its another thing entirely to do it with another person.
The car was okay, keep in mind it was a $1500 car so I wasn't expecting perfection. It starts good and runs nice. The speedo is off, Don (the owner) said he thought it was like 7mph off, I think its alot more like 20mph as it said we were going 70mph in 3rd gear. He also said it was "crazy fast" when it fact is just about the same as my 190D... The rust was a little more extensive than I'd thought but thats not a big surprise as he'd told me his pics made it look better than it was.
What did surprise me was the lack of working door locks. We'd hoped to spend a day in Chicago with a friend of mine but with no working door locks (no trunk lock at all) that surely wasn't gonna happen.
Then there was the missing radio antenna, one rear window that wouldn't work and a bunch of other little piddling stuff (oh, bad bad rear shocks, felt like you were at sea) that all compounded into me having a really bad feeling about driving 1300+ miles.
If I had that car here and it was for sale for $1500 it'd be a no brainer, bring it to me now. I'd have time to fix the little things at my leisure and all would be well... I just didn't feel comfortable with that distance a drive with a car I wasn't really sure about. Don didn't seem to want to sell the car either, witness that he fixed the locks the day AFTER I left...

So anyway I'll be fixing the 240D, the warts will be removed and it'll go back into service. It'll become the $1500 car it was when I bought it originally. I'm going to keep my eyes open for another VW though, I liked what I saw...


On selling cars

So my 240D is not for sale any longer. The Quantum in Iowa was not what I expected and we declined to buy, thus the 240D will become Angie's daily driver.
What amazes me is the stupid questions people asked, it was an $800 car remember? I got a lot of "Does it have issues?" Of COURSE it has issues, its an $800 car. If it was perfect it'd be a $10,000 car...

I spent some time looking at cars on eBay today and noticed one common thread, "The A/C works but doesn't blow cold." Guess what kids, if the A/C doesn't blow cold, IT DOESN'T WORK. The A/C's whole job is to blow cold...


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Selling Christmas presents?

Didja ever get something for Christmas that you just didn't want? What about your birthday? My grandmother was great for giving me clothes that didn't fit or were not even remotely something I would wear. The great thing was that she bought EVERYTHING from JC Penny so I could return it and get something I liked. Then I could wear it and tell her how much I loved it. She'd never remember that she hadn't bought it for me and everybody was happy.
This year for my birthday my Mom got me a Nintendo game I already had. Its cool though, its a great game. I sold the one I already had and kept the one Mom got me. I figure that one is totally inbounds, I kept the one my mom got me, I know I did, it was still in the plastic wrap. For Christmas my inlaws got me a game I don't like. Ninja-breadman. Its not a bad game, I played it a couple times, its kinda fun but its just not something I'm into. Its been on the shelf now unplayed for months.
At work we've got a forsale and wanted board. Its where I sold the game my Mom bought me a dupe of. I've listed Ninja-breadman there but I feel kinda funny about it. I'm selling a Christmas present. When I was a kid selling or trading Christmas presents was strictly verboten... What am I supposed to do, keep it forever?


Monday, August 11, 2008


Does anybody reading this freecycle? I've given away a couple things and gotten a couple loads of wood from it. The thing that gets me is the people who appear to be asking for stuff they really should go out and buy. I guess if you view it as recycling thats one thing but sometimes it seems like people are just too cheap to get stuff or are so stuck on having stuff they're using this to get stuff they don't really need or deserve.

For instance: "I would like a AC that would cover a 4 room apartment, or at least the 2 rooms." Thats pretty specific. I think if I didn't have any money and I wanted an airconditioner for FREE I'd just ask for what I could get. What if its too small for 2 rooms are you gonna be a turkey and not take it? Hell there was a time I'd have taken ANY airconditioner and called it the greatest thing ever! I also note the lack of thanks in the message like freecycle is where you go and place your order and stuff appears. Once I requested wood fencing to make a sign from and I was super polite and thankful these other folks amaze me.

Heres a good one: "looking for a canoe, doesn't have to be perfect just has to float! thanks in advance"

And one I replied to " Pie pans, clean jars with lids,containers,old cd's,milk covers &
bands,bottle caps, cork, etc. Anything crafty and recyclable!" which is for a business that has kids make little craft projects. I responded with an offer of stuff and even a suggestion on how to use it and they can't even bother to reply... I was a little perturbed about a business posting a request on freecycle and then they can't even reply when somebody offers, thats lousy. If you think my stuff isn't good enough just say so.

Ahh to have your craft stuff turned down, bottom of the barrel.


Friday, August 8, 2008

Odometer repair

Ever wonder how the odometer works in your car? Its actually a pretty simple gizmo. The odo in Hammie the 240D is suffering from old Mercedes odometer syndrome (omods). When I owned the car before the odometer worked fine but the trip meter would count up to .9 and stop. Now nothing works at all. A guy from the Mercedes list sent me a bad odo (along with the speedo) that had similar symptoms (no complaints about the trip but the odo didn't work). I took it apart and discovered that there is a metal wheel that is driven by the speedo and then drives the odo. That wheel was slipping on its shaft and thus couldn't be driven properly. After some trial and error I carefully built up the inside of the wheel so it gripped the shaft more tightly and refitted everything together. Now odo and trip meter work fine.

With any luck tonight I'll pull the odo from the 240D and find it has the same problem and the trip meter is similar. Easy fix for no cost with glue I've already got...


Monday, August 4, 2008

The best things in life

It'd appear the best things in life for me right now are the things I don't have. I don't have an ex, don't have alimony payments, don't have cancer. I don't have a mortgage I can't pay, I don't need credit counseling services and don't have a therapist. I don't need fast women or loose cars. I don't want for much of anything or much for want of anything...
All in all I'd say I'm pretty lucky.