May 28th, 2010

#2091: Time to check that mystery rattle, and HOLY SH--!

Over the past week or so there's been a rattle from the left front of the Escort. Not a loud one, and intermittent; it sounded like the brake caliper. Sometimes the pads get loose in the things, and they rattle a bit, and the only real way to fix it is either to put a little high-temp silicone RTV on the back of the pad opposite the cylinder, or replace the pads. For lack of a better way of describing it, the noise didn't sound "big" enough to be something major.

Today I realized I had already put off checking it out for three or four days. I hadn't wanted to do it during the hot weather early in the week, and yesterday after my yard work I was curiously exhausted. Today, after the errands, I hied myself out to the driveway to check it out.

Nothing was obviously out of place. I thought it might just be the rusty dust shield, but it didn't make the right kind of noise. I whacked the caliper with the socket wrench a couple times. It rattled the right way, so I investigated further, and HOLY SHIT THE UPPER CALIPER BOLT IS OUT!

It wasn't completely unscrewed, but it was at least half an inch out and I could turn it with my fingers.

The lower bolt was tight. So what could have happened? Worst case, the bolt could have fallen out; then the caliper would have pivoted away from the rotor until it contacted the inside of the wheel. I would have still had some braking authority; I would have stopped driving and called a tow truck at that point, so in all probability I wouldn't have wrecked the car--but fuck, how the hell did the damn thing get loose in the first place?

It's likely that when I was putting the engine in and had the knuckles off to get the axle shafts out, I didn't get the upper bolt tightened down all the way when I reassembled it. Well, this afternoon I tightened it and gave it an extra sharp nip with the wrench just to make sure. And triple-checked the lower one, too, but it was tight.

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Yet another reason to move to Arizona! Michael Moore and Kanye West (among other useless morons) have promised to stay out announced they will boycott Arizona because of its new immigration law.

I'm liking this better and better.

It's pretty obvious that these useless morons haven't read the bill, nor has anyone explained to them that the bill merely echoes US federal immigration law.

WTF, Kanye West is a gay fish; WTF does he know anyway?

Oh, and "Tenacious D" is boycotting Arizona, too. Oooh noo, Tenacious D! Jack Black and his butt buddy, what's-his-name, are going to boycott Arizona! Oh my God! I must reconsider--

HELL NO I DON'T HAVE TO RECONSIDER ANYTHING.

It's wonderful to see liberals losing their shit over the possibility that an existing law might be enforced. Hey liberals! If you don't like Arizona's law, why aren't you pushing to have the equivalent federal laws repealed? Eh?

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Chris Matthews announces that the tingle is dead. He's no longer got those leg tingles for Obama.

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More panic about the money supply.

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Here's an excellent Eternity Road post on the role bullying plays in leftist politics in America.

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Back in 2002 when I first got the Fiero, I had a moment like the one I refer to at the beginning of this post. I was tinkering around with the car a little and noticed--what's that bolt there?

It turned out it was one of the freakin' alternator bolts, so I got my wrenches out and tightened it down. No idea how that thing got loose, but it's stayed tightened since then.

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While cutting the grass yesterday I awas thinking about Jeeves and Wooster, a series which had been shown on Masterpiece Theater in the early 1990s. It starred Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie as the title characters (in order) and it was based on the characters of P.G. Wodehouse.

I was thinking, "Yeah, we British comdedy geeks liked Hugh Laurie long before House!" I'm starting to think I'll take any chance I can get to be elitist. How sad is that?