Thursday, May 24, 2007

Re: Brake Parts

Purchased one rebuilt left-rear brake caliper (without adjuster) and replacement rotors, pads, and stainless-steel brake lines, all to fix the parking brake and improve rear braking performance ($605.93). Still need a 0.008 inch feeler gauge and a lesson in bleeding brakes.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Step 2: Fix the brakes

The parking/emergency brake uses cables and actuators, not hydraulics. The left side is broken, has no resistance to tension on the cable, and since the system relies on a tension "equalizer" between left and right side, this effectively breaks the entire system. They call these "emergency" brakes?

The brake pads are nearly exhausted.

I changed the oil.

Re: Recording notes

Excerpts from Keith's notes from the first recording session:
  • A porsche is a sporting car and has a tendency to slip while performing a high speed turn in a residential neighborhoods. That was totally fun, he doesn't understand that's what traffic circles are for!
  • Be prepared to get out and push. If we're positioned facing down a hill, the car will start itself. If we're positioned facing up a hill, the car behind us better get out and push.
(Speaking of which, I really need to fix the parking brake.)

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Re: Ferris Bueller moment

A $4200 buy it now on eBay:
    You are bidding on a 1974 Porsche 914 4 cylinder car 1.8 fuel injected engine. I have owned this car for 2 months. I bought the car in order to have it converted to electric propulsion but in the meantime I came across another car that was allready converted into electric which i bought. The car has been a California car all its life and I am the 3rd owner. I was told that the first owner kept it in a garage until 1996. The car starts fine and runs well. The brakes work very well although the hand brake cable will likely need an adjustment. The dash has some cracks typical of the cars of this age and the carpet seems original. The body is straight and the car drives straight. Some minor scratches here and there but no dents. The wheels are aluminum and the tires in descent shape. There is a spare tire and a jack.There is a keyless entry installed in the front trunk but no remotes There are a lot of receipts worth a couple of thousand dollars that came with the car including new clutch, bearings etc. The car is overall in great running condition and it will make a great commuter or can be restored to original with some TLC. I reserve the right to sell the car early as it is being advertised in a local paper. I only drove the car twice and it has been sitting there waiting for its new owner. Please ask questions and check my rating, bid with confidence.
Click. I called my Mom around 8pm to see if she could pick me up in Long Beach the following morning. Booked a flight on Jetblue for 6:30am.

Know where the I-5 meets the Glendale freeway? It's an hour from Long Beach, Dodger stadium traffic included. Mom brought her poodles in case we had trouble at the destination. Arrived and sure enough, the guy has a blue electric 914, up on jack-stands in his driveway. I drive off in a new car I knew very little about.

Traffic sucks in LA. I made it to the 110 and zoomed back to Long Beach. The engine stalled as soon as I pulled off the freeway, but that wasn't the first sign of a problem. He told me the speedometer was intermittent, but it's never worked for me. The tachometer bounces back and forth like a metronome, I suppose you're supposed to read the average value.

The next day I was stuck behind a 2-lane accident on the 405 for nearly two hours, then drove at top speed for about 45 minutes until I smelled oil burning and pulled over, and now I know: the engine won't start or idle when it's hot. This made for a pretty miserable drive. Each time I stopped the car I would have to wait 20 or 30 minutes to start it again. I left the car parked at my office for two weeks, taking joyrides at lunch.

Drove it up the 101 from Mountain View to SF in Friday night traffic, saw one 914 pass me at the 92 interchange, saw one needing roadside assistance at the 280 interchange. I held up a "hang in there" salute, knowing my engine would stall as soon as I pulled off the freeway in another mile.

I skipped Spanish class on Tuesday night so I could work late, but got home in time to pick someone up in front of school after class. Ferris Bueller moment.