atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,
atomic_fungus
atomic_fungus

#477: Car Musings

The sinister illness is still going strong, keeping me from working. But I've had time to think about things, and today I woke up feeling halfway human--the latest antibiotics seem to be doing the trick rather nicely.

I have three major car projects pending.

First is the MGB. It's my Dad's 1977 MGB, and I suspect that all it really needs is a tune-up; once it has that, a trip to the emissions testing station and some fine-tuning ought to get it into proper form. Once it's running well and has new tires, I will drive it a lot because it's fun.

Second is the 1986 Fiero sitting in the garage, in pieces. I'm going to finish painting the cradle and then begin seeking someone to do the machine work the engine needs. I would like to have the engine back together before it starts getting cold outside and turn my attention to getting a good overdrive transmission for the thing. Ideally, I would like to have the car in drivable condition by this time next year, but we'll see. Once it's done I don't know what I'll do with it.

Third is the engine transplant on the Escort. The first two projects must be completed before I can do this, because I want to be able to put the Escort into the garage while I do the transplant. This will realistically extend the lifespan of this car by 2 years, perhaps 3, but a lot depends on the rusty area I found ahead of the right rear wheel. In any event I am going to need to start shopping for a replacement for this car, which means saving $$$ for a down payment.

Minor tasks include repairing the 1985 Fiero's parking brake system and cleaning it thoroughly, changing fluids and getting it drivable again. It'd be nice to be able to drive it once in a while, especially since it's been about a year since I last drove it.

Around all of this, I also need to go through the garage and ruthlessly eliminate junk and trash which has no redeeming value. There's an awful lof of that in there.

From here it looks like an Everest of work, and still feeling feverish and dizzy it's hard for me to imagine being able to accomplish any of it. Still, once this fiendish infection has been beaten down, I expect I'll be able to accomplish it.

* * *

Once the '86 has become drivable, I really do wonder what I'm going to do with it.

I've started to think that I can't really justify having three cars, so I'll have to decide what I'm going to do with one of them--and I do need a "practical" car, which a Fiero ain't, so the idea of getting rid of the Escort is probably not going to do.

When I was thinking that I would have a fiancee living here in a matter of months, it was a different story: I'd let her use the Escort, and drive one of the Fieros myself. But since that has fallen through, now I'm thinking that I really don't need to have another car around.

Argh. All of this really is too much for my brain to handle right now.

* * *

Realistically, the '86 needs a few weeks' worth of concentrated effort and about $1,000-$2,000 worth of parts to be returned to 100%. It would not look very good, but it would run and drive perfectly. And I like the idea of having a vehicle with mechanicals that are essentially new yet is old enough that thieves and vandals will ignore it.

There is no reason a restored Fiero could not be as reliable as a new car.

* * *

It's kind of exciting to think about getting out into the garage and actually getting something done, though. I have most of the tools I need to accomplish the tasks before me; all I really need is time and gumption. I guess that'll do.
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