Every time I venture out into the garage to tool on something, I usually forget what my original intention was. So this time I’ve made a list..
WORK OUT WHICH OF MY CURRENT COILPACKS IS HEADED FOR AN EARLY RETIREMENT
Because I work a early afternoon into midway through the night radio gig, I’ve had a few interesting run homes in the last couple of weeks involving six Nissan cylinders dropping down to five. Usually on the M1 (a huge freeway here in Queensland) which means there’s really no places to pull over and investigate further (even though I already know the answer to this one – one of my coil packs is having a rough time of things). Of course you know when it happens, the triple signalled warning flashes up and suddenly the normally smoothish RB25 develops a slight rumble…kind of a like a pretty weak impression of a WRX. However rarely does it last more than 15 minutes before it wakes up again and normal engine programming resumes – my trip home is 33 minutes so diagnosing which of the little bastards it is has proved to be a little bit of a challenge.
(Best guess is that it’s number 4, the hardest to reach of them all under all the top junk even though I have kept the valley cover and the top plastic shroud off the engine for easier on the spot coil pack related analysis..when time and money persists, I’m buying a set of Splitfires and be done with it all).
FINALLY CHECK THE CONDITION OF MY COOLANT TEMP SENSOR
Ever since I took ownership of the Warwagon I read that old coolant temp sensors could be detrimental to your fuel economy…and I’ve been meaning to pop mine out, attach a multimeter and see if it’s behaving like it should. Of course every time I go anywhere near the engine bay I completely forget about it and so it’s been on my list of things to learn about…but I’ve yet to even sight mine while doing other work. Usually I’m too preoccupied trying to work out why coil packs are the weakest part of the whole thing and start looking at them again..
STOP LOOKING AT FACEBOOK CLASSIFIEDS FOR CARS I TRULY DO NOT NEED, REGARDLESS OF HOW CHEAP THEY MAY BE.
This week I’ve seen a rough looking 280ZX for 3K and an even rougher Lexus GS300 for $1500 and even though I’ve had no real lust for either of these particular models, part of me wonders what they would be like to own…even though I don’t have the money, the space, the time, the mechanical knowledge and even any idea where to start with either one of them. For some reason the price seems cheap enough for me to think ‘Hey, if I had a spare 3 grand…’ even though the saner part of me knows exactly what I could do with 3 grand and it doesn’t involve buying random banged up cars on Facebook.
Then there was this 2004 Mazda Rx8 I saw on Facebook the other day…
REMIND MYSELF THAT I DO NOT NEED ANOTHER ROTARY
My family and I were checking out some Christmas light displays last night in our new neighbourhood (I’m sorry Bendigo, I know your xmas light displays are good but this street had no parking left, hundreds of people ooing and ahhing at everything, a coffee stall, fairy floss machine and even a donut van!) when I heard the distinct sound of a peripheral ported rotary just brapping along somewhere (no idea where, I just heard it in amongst the xmas music and crowds). When I pointed out what I was hearing to my better half she remarked ‘I miss your Rx7.’
I didn’t remind her the time I stank out the house with petrol fumes when I flooded the 13BT after two weeks of inactivity. Or the time it drowned out the main drag of town in coolant smoke when a mechanic with more knowledge of triangles actually managed to unflood it. Or when the exhaust fell off. Or how much it cost every time it went to get repaired. Or how much paint would flake off when you took off at the lights. Or how the guy who swapped me his Soarer for it blew it up two weeks later. Or how magically it repaired itself, got bought by a guy who took it across the border and the gearbox exploded.
Sure I miss the sound and the fact that it was the most lethally happy rev machine when it was working and with the coilovers it loved the corners and on the Great Ocean Road it was the best thing I’d even driven…but that’s about it. The fact that I’ve got a 70km trip weekdays to work and back means if I’d still had it I’d cost me a mini mortgage in petrol and insurance. And if I broke down on the M1…
…let’s just say that I’m happy it’s just a failing coil pack (and possibly dud coolant temp sensor) being the worst of my worries at this point. I’d much rather come home with an intermittent cylinder than on the back of a tow truck (which funnily enough happened with the Rx7 once..)