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Kodachrome Wolf

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Kodachrome Wolf last won the day on June 24

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436 The Chosen One

About Kodachrome Wolf

  • Rank
    Land Yacht Hoarder
  • Birthday 02/16/1995

Car Information

  • My Car
    1997 Grand Marquis LS & 1987 Colony Park LS
  • Engine
    281ci Modular V8 & 302ci Windsor V8

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  • Location
    Evans, GA
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  1. The first generation models were popular considering what most of America was driving at the time, which were cars that were generally of the three box style. The Taurus and Sable dropped in as a sleek, modern looking car compared to similar midsize cars, like the Chevrolet Celebrity. 1986 Celebrity 1986 Taurus The second generation was an update on the first generation. Still had modern styling at the time, but all the other manufacturers couldn't be outdone. Pontiac tried copying the Sable's distinct light bar on the Grand Prix. Ford did have a rather good run with the car between 1986-1995, and a lot of their lines started sharing similar "Aero" body lines moving into the 90s. For 1992, the Crown Victoria imitated a "larger Taurus" after being restyled in the only year it didn't have a conventional grille. Just like today where most manufacturers share similar design cues in all models, it happened in a number of Ford products from the late 80s through the 90s. From there, the popularity waned as the third gen was a love it or hate it affair design wise and other competition, especially from foreign markets really took hold in the midsize market. The addition of the Duratec V6 was nice for the extra power over the traditional Vulcan V6, particularly after the head gasket hungry Essex V6 was dropped. However, the less than exciting styling relegated a number of these cars to fleets and rentals. As far as popularity goes, this was a midsize, generally no thrills sedan that offered 5 or 6 passenger seating with a number of modernity amenities as they were built. They may have not been a stellar as some of the other cars in their class, but they did what was expected of them, however forgettable they may seem. For a number of buyers, they made a good family car that would either be passed down or eventually traded in a few years later. I wouldn't say they were made to last a lifetime without a bit of work. The transaxle has always been a weak point in these cars, or at least prior to the shift to the full size chassis after 2007. An external cooler and more frequent fluid changes considerably will extend their lifespans. The 3.8 V6 (Essex) engines were available in the late 80s right up to 1995, but had a nasty habit of eating head gaskets, but the Essex wasn't unique to Taurus and Sable, and also gave troubles to Thunderbird, Mustang, and other cars that used it, however a good number of Taurus/Sable models got them, so a notorious engine with a notorious transaxle gives the cars a bad rap, especially since that stuff causes nameplates to pale in comparison to other competitors. Barring all that, the Taurus did accomplish something fairly large in its own right, and it saved Ford. Ford wasn't well off in the '80s, and the Taurus/Sable project was a make or break deal. If that car flopped, they would have gone under. They were so unsure if the Taurus would make it, they kept making the car it was supposed to replace, the mid-size Fox chassis LTD. right beside it for the 1986 model year. When sales took off, they finally ended the LTD production. /tangent Regarding MPG, are we comparing them to modern minivans or minivans that were new when they were new? The four speed transaxle would probably be the biggest point of less than stellar mileage. A more modern transaxle would have been nice in the mid 2000s, but alas that didn't happen. The Duratec engines in my opinion seem to be thirsty. My mother has an MKZ with the 3.5 and a 6 speed automatic, and in mixed driving gets similar mileage to my Grand Marquis with a 4.6 with a 4 speed automatic. Typically I average 20 MPG, which is nice for a large car that's 21 years old. Her car might do 21 MPG average, and is only 9 years old. Even highway mileage is similar between 26-28 MPG. I assume a Taurus could manage similar numbers.
  2. So I've been using the full size spare on the '97, and it decided to do this. One of regular tires got a leak, can't find where it is, plus the tread was low enough it wasn't worth getting it checked out. This particular tire was from an earlier set I had put on, so probably 2012 or 2013. Had no problems over the last week or so until today when I got a really harsh vibration coming home. Glad it didn't decide to let go. Inspecting the circumference, it looks like a belt shifted and the tread separated from the carcass. I was never a fan of how that particular set of tires wore either (Firestone Affinity Touring), and they wore out the center faster than the edges, even when being inflated to factory PSI. I personally prefer running these cars at 40 PSI all around, but I digress. The Kuhmo KR21s that preceded those and the Firestone Precision Tourings that succeeded them wore evenly across the entire tread area versus exaggerated wear down the center. Anyway I've been looking at tires since they're all due for replacement anyway. I'll be doing that sooner than later. In the meantime, I'm going to run out to the tire shop early in the morning before work and have a cheapo tire mounted up to make it to next week since I've got to call to order the set I've been looking at. Hopefully next week I'll have four fresh tires on. White wall will be going by the wayside this go around, unfortunately. I've opted to go with the Kuhmo TA11 225/70R15. Good reviews, good specs, meets my criteria, and Discount Tire has them at a reasonable price.
  3. Kodachrome Wolf

    What Rear rotors do I need for 1999 Wagon?

    Looking at the parts catalog at work, it’s showing a singular rear brake rotor covering 1993-2007 Tauruses. It doesn’t have a wagon/sedan or a ABS/Non-ABS selection. To the OP, do your rotors have any numbers on them besides discard thickness?
  4. Finally got the dual exhaust system completed on the wagon. Took it down to a local exhaust shop that did the '97's muffler some time ago. Welded in a coupler for the passenger side tailpipe, custom bent a driver side tailpipe, and installed three hangers. In and out in less than 30 minutes for $85. They did great work. I may clean up how far it exits from the body. It's probably out about an inch. Worst case scenario I clip it back a touch with a saw, but I may just leave it alone. After the exhaust shop, I cruised it on the interstate so I could head over to the DIY carwash. The A/C did great with the heat and at freeway speed (80 MPH), you can't feel the dead miss. It cleaned up pretty nice considering it hasn't been washed down in several months and was covered in dust, bird droppings, grass, and other yard debris that settled on it. Hopefully it won't be long and I'll have the parts in hand to fix the issue. Once that project gets underway, it'll have a bit more grunt. Nothing show stopping, but it'll be above 160 HP.
  5. Changed the heater hoses, radiator hoses, and thermostat out on the '97. I was working on borrowed time with 21 year old hoses and figured it would be wise to change them before age caught up. Topped the system off with G-05. Everything seems to work fine at operating temperature.
  6. Kodachrome Wolf

    The manual transmission Taurus Wagon everyone wants

    Rare bird, but rather worthless in that shape. Every panel has rust, the rear quarters have holes above the wheel arches, there's moss growing in the driver's foot well along with magical goop running down that kick panel. I'm sure the cancer runs deep through that car. Something tells me the floors aren't quite solid anymore either based on the rest of it. The engine might be the most valuable thing there, but then who needs a 2.5 HSC at this point? That engine was unique only to Taurus and Sable. Maybe a Tempo or Topaz could have one swapped in, but who's got one of those? Seeing that rear quarter panel reminded me of this gem: Personally I wouldn't give them more than $100 for that wagon. The amount of effort and money that would be required to get that thing right would be laughably high and the only real value is to an enthusiast with deep enough pockets or a lot of time.
  7. Kodachrome Wolf

    CL, Old Taurus Folks. Body good, Roof Atrocious

    Gets your demographic that never thought about buying anything lesser than a model with a landau roof, despite the fact dealers regularly whored up base models. When roaming about the junkyard, it's not uncommon to catch out 1992+ Panthers with those silly roofs (the boxy models came with factory landau roofs unless they were deleted by option). The big thing I've noticed is that most of them are GS models wearing those things, but labeled like "Presidential Package" or some other silly name. Great way to get more money out of a lesser car. Of course grandma and grandpa are none the wiser and it reminds them of all the other large cars that preceded the one they just got.
  8. Finally got the car broke in. Now I need to go about another 12K and I'll have put 100K of my own driving on it.
  9. Kodachrome Wolf

    Gen 6 Taurus cyclone engine

    Or save some time and just look online... Nissan: Ford: Your plans for using Nissan parts won’t work well at all. I’d say keep looking for headers, otherwise you’re looking at a custom fabrication job.
  10. Kodachrome Wolf

    Done with Ford

    While I find it funny for a company to drop a few major lines like that, there’s some people it’ll never affect, like myself. Could I see myself driving a Fusion? Sure. Problem is, I’m not in the market for new. It would likely be used. On top of that, I like longetivity. I don’t foresee getting rid of either of my two cars any time soon. The ‘97 has been reliable and even if a major repair cropped up, it would still probably be cheaper for me to repair it than to get a replacement. If I were to shop newer, I’d still probably be looking at used Panthers anyway.
  11. Replaced my driver's side window... This happened at work Thursday night. It wasn't a break in, but someone was screwing around with a BB gun I guess. I was thinking an animal originally or an errant object tossed up by a car, but the other day my coworker noticed two cracks in his windshield with small impact points. He claimed he hadn't seen them before and could only assume they appeared at the same time my window got broken. FWIW, my window was broken towards the bottom of the sill near the mirror, and the impact point didn't knock a hole in the glass (the large hole looks like the glass just fell out by weight alone). Based on his windshield and my window, someone was being an ass. Since I didn't have time to wait for an insurance claim to fix my window (and today I knew it was going to rain), I paid $20 for one from the junkyard. I grabbed a good, unscratched one from an '07 Crown Victoria. It wasn't a hard fix, but not exactly a job I ever expected to have to do. It's the principle of the matter that someone was going around dicking with other people's stuff and causing trouble. If anyone has had to deal with broken safety glass inside of a car, you know the fine fragments get everywhere and you find bits of broken glass in odd places. It took several rounds of vacuuming to get everything out.
  12. Kodachrome Wolf

    The Official Dang Near Anything Thread

    Got a set of trim rings. They haven’t been touched in a while, decided to clean them in the sink. Well, I flipped one over to clean the retaining ring area and a live, angry scorpion fell out. Saw another pair of pinchers sticking out of another end. Hella nope. I sent the one in the sink down the drain and doused the damned ring with brake clean and tossed the lot outside on the deck. These things are staying outside and I’ll clean them with the hose instead.
  13. Finally installed a receiver. Been meaning to do this for a while. Install wasn't that bad. The slowest portion was drilling the 1/2" holes for the bolts closest to the bumper. I used the jack to hold the front portion against the frame after bolting the rear up so I could easily drill the holes. Then I let it down some and loosened the back a touch for final adjustment and to make it easier to get the front bolts aligned. The only tools I needed was a drill with a 1/2" bit and a 3/4" wrench. I'll be picking up a transmission cooler and a flat 4 brake light plug-n-play harness soon. Hopefully I'll get started on installing my air ride swap once I get done with this semester. That'll give me more time to work on that project since it'll be an involved process.
  14. Or, uh, a really grumpy 302 while attempting to keep pace with some Fusions...
  15. On Sunday I ripped out the '87's single diaphragm booster. It was on it's way out giving me an awkwardly stiff pedal and constantly hissing when depressed. Ratty, rusty thing: I really don't know who was in charge of harness routing on these cars, but they routed three major harnesses, two important vacuum lines (cruise and reservoir), and the cruise control cable across the booster. Vacuum lines are easy since they just pull apart. The cruise control module unplugs and can be swung out of the way. The harnesses, not so much. It takes some unique maneuvering to get those where you want it. And to top it off, the booster can't be pulled straight out because the wiper motor is in the way. You got to pull it forwards as much as possible, then take the right hand side and pull that forwards and keep turning it, angling it, and turning it until it slides out from all the harnesses. Getting the bolts out under the dash were less annoying than the physical removal. Anyway, the replacement booster resolves all of those issues. It's one spec'd for a '92 Panther, but it's better all around. It's half the diameter, but a dual diaphragm setup. It offers greater effort than the original one. Even though it sticks out a bit further, it easily just slips in between the harnesses and such. If you look above the main harness that goes over the booster, you can see where the plastic cowling has a rounded edge where the old booster would have fit into. The brake pedal feels so much better now and gives a more confident feeling when slowing down. Anyway, that's crossed off the to-do list. Still need to get the exhaust system finished up. Duals are in place, but over the axle pipes need to be welded up along with some appropriate hangers. It also is awaiting a top end refresh since it's believed to have a burned valve on cylinder one (the exhaust will suck in paper when held a 1/2" away). I'm recording 10 PSI on that cylinder and it runs with a dead miss. But, since the heads are coming off, there's no sense in not giving it a small power bump. Another 302 around here that's getting it's own top end refresh will be donating some parts along to fix another 302. Once that's all said and done, maybe I'll start driving it again. I've been very limited when I take it out since I don't like driving on seven cylinders and it's absolutely killing the gas mileage. I've driven it so little the last time I put gas in was January, and it was finally low enough to fill up on Sunday.