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Thread: Ghetto repairs

  1. #121

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    I don't know if this qualifies as a ghetto repair or not. I worked with a guy many years ago who had been a repairman at a BMC dealership here in the US. He told about a time when every new car delivered to the dealership had to have the choke cable replaced before it was delivered or put out on the floor. It seems that previously the manual choke mechanism was pulled out to close the choke and turned to lock it in the choke position. Otherwise a spring would return it to off. There had been a number of engines that were damaged from running too long too rich, or maybe it was the beginning of emission concerns. In any case, all the new models would no longer lock when turned. You had to just hold the choke until the engine was warm enough to run without stumbling.

    This may have been alright for owners, but it was a thorn in the side of the longshoremen who drove these off the ships at the port of entry. Frustrated at having to hold onto the choke handle or, god help us, wait a bit for it to warm up they came up with their own fix. To start the car they would pull out the handle and bend it over. So at the dealership, all new cars got the fix.
    .
    "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." Thomas Edison

  2. #122
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
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    Waukesha WI USA (20 miles W of Milwaukee)
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    623

    Default Plymouth Horizon (1980s)

    Quote Originally Posted by Dunc
    Plymouth Horizon (1970s?)
    Decade of the 1980s not 70s. Carefully engineered to cosmetically self destruct at 50K miles while being almost entirely mechanically viable for at least 200K miles. Easily the best snow driver I've ever owned or driven... narrow high pressure tires and no anti-lock means it digs into the snow like skis. I was the only guy I knew who looked forward to driving in blizzards because it was actually fun in that car, being one of the best snow handling cars on the road.

    I smashed it into a curb at 25 mph (gravel? grease?) and it gained a "wobble" sound at certain speeds for the next 50 thousand miles. Never could figure out what happened.

    The only mechanical issue was the CV joint covers were engineered to die every 6 years, then grit would destroy the CV joint within a year. Could set a calendar by that.

    Also rebadged as the Dodge Omni.

  3. #123
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
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    Canada, Bc
    Posts
    7,632

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    Quote Originally Posted by Willy
    Andy don't forget that it is usually torque and not HP that twists driveshafts. Also the torque applied to the drive line is multiplied numerous times by the transmission and transfer case ratios.

    Most drive shaft tubing is dom .083" tubing with a torque capacity of about 4,500 ft. lb. for a 3" tube depending on length. Older trucks often came with .065" tubing.

    I'm not surprised you exhaust tubing repair on the drive shaft is still doing well. Tubing has an enormous torque capacity.

    Nice fix by the way Andy, got the snow plowed without having to wait for special parts. The rust will kill it before the truck does.
    if its anything like the exhaust tube I got locally at the local random exhaust shop, It will last MUCH longer then his truck without any exhaust gasses passing through it. I have had some I welded outside on the lawn for over a year. It looks better then most of the mild steel I keep indoors. Even the welds look good, I suspect whatever they coat/plate it with 'contaminates' the welds and makes them much more rust resistant.

  4. #124
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    New Zealand
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    316

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Artful Bodger
    Heck, some cars came from the factory with a thing like that, others had a lever under the bonnet (hood) marked "summer/winter".
    The "summer/winter" thing was usually the air intake, not the heater. Cold air into the air cleaner in summer, warmer air (from behind the radiator) in winter.
    Had a Nissan Sunny years ago, which used to ice up the carb on a cold winter's night. It wasn't until I learned about carb icing when learning to fly that I twigged what was causing this random loss of power in the car. Ran it on the "winter" setting all year, and that cured it.

  5. #125
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Prestatyn, North-Wales
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    6,006

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Burch
    The "summer/winter" thing was usually the air intake, not the heater. Cold air into the air cleaner in summer, warmer air (from behind the radiator) in winter.
    Had a Nissan Sunny years ago, which used to ice up the carb on a cold winter's night. It wasn't until I learned about carb icing when learning to fly that I twigged what was causing this random loss of power in the car. Ran it on the "winter" setting all year, and that cured it.
    think the early mg midgets had a brass heater tap ..that was turned off in the summer and turned on in the winter ..there was a plate on it sayng winter /summer.


    tap = faucet in usa

    all the best.markj

  6. #126
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    SW Michigan
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    3,840

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    It's the old rope trick on a plane. To hold up the valve seed rope into a sparkplug hole to hold the valve up. Works great!




    Quote Originally Posted by gnm109
    That's an excellent ghetto repair. I've change valve seals on a V-8 using compressed air to hold the valves in place, but that used to be a fairly common shop repair. Your repair was much more ingenious.

    Have you ever heard of "ghetto driving". I once owned a 1963 Lincoln Continental with the big V-8. I noticed after first buying it, that it ran smoothly up to exactly 65 mph. Even one or two mph more and it would start missing. It felt like one cylinder was not firing. Since I was first married at that time and had no extra cash, I continued to stay under 65 mph with the vehicle for probably another 3 years. That was my "ghetto fix". I simply did nothing.

    Later on I began to get more time and loose cash and I finally broke down and removed the heads for a valve job. I discovered in removing the valves that they exhaust balve on the right front cylinder was bent slightly. It was close to a head bolt and I could see how a wrench could easily bend it. I had to drive it out of the valve guide with a punch. Since the vehicle had rather low oil pressure at idle I suspect that the valve only moved up to the point of the bend by 65 mph and would actually lift higher beyond that.

    So, a ghetto fix may also include ignoring the problem and doing nothing, sort of red-neck style.
    "The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living and the get rich theory of life." Theodore Roosevelt

  7. #127
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    287

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    Quote Originally Posted by flylo
    It's the old rope trick on a plane. To hold up the valve seed rope into a sparkplug hole to hold the valve up. Works great!
    Is "rope seed" anything like "pancake trees"?

  8. #128
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    362

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    Regarding the "rope trick" when I was just starting out in the bid-ness, (at least on recips) I had an old Air Force guy tell me that they would ferry those big multi engines radial powered aircraft, with one engine inoperative, by roping a cylinder, & feathering the prop. The rope prevented any windmilling, which may cause more damage.

    Flew just fine on three.

  9. #129
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Kendal, On
    Posts
    338

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    I've had a few. Endurance race motorcycles for very long, and you wind up with a pretty good list of ghetto repairs. Zip ties, old bolts/screws, wire coat hangers, and duct tape CAN be used as a substitute for almost ANYTHING on a motorcycle (except the front brake lever, that one is kind of important).

  10. #130
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Russellville, AR
    Posts
    731

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    One of my uncles bought a Studebaker Hawk many years ago. It ran great but one day as he was going up a hill just out of town, it started knocking. He dropped the pan and found that the lower ends of the rods had leather inserts made from a belt. He replaced them with new leather two or three times before selling the car.

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