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What Have You Done To Your Other Vehicle Lately?


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I drove by the scene of the murder on my way to work this afternoon and was nearly hit by one of the buzzards feasting on the raccoon carcass. Lately it seems like our cars are magnets for wildlife. Lots of smaller animals, but the deer are worse. We're fortunate <sarcasm> to live in the "deer capital" of Texas. They aren't very big, but numerous. Deer hunting season is just around the corner, which will help control the population.

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The only trouble is if either of you try showing down on the street no one will think you're racing, just attempting to briskly accelerate.

Work day today for the '97. The brake shudder came back, so I went ahead and decided to see if replacing the brake hardware will eliminate it. Parts fixed/replaced: New calipers on both si

More mods! Found the part number for the OEM black Charger emblem, so I did a swap. Yes yes, I could have plastidipped it, but this was just as cheap, and won't peel over time.

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A few bison escaped from a "ranch" near where I work and one of them got caught in the median of the highway. Eventually it ventured onto the road and a car hit it. The Bison didn't survive. There are still 2 bison on the loose and we've been told to be very cautious while driving lol. No joke!

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I am not a big fan of Dorman, in fact I think they suck, however a part of me wonders, "How could one f**k up a parking brake cable" Well, how? You make the cable the wrong size so you can't even hook it into the car. :P

 

Everything else has gone according to plan on the Super coupe. Each and every single parking brake cable is seized up. Replaced both the wheels, and those were BestBrake from O'Reillys, the parking brake cable was from ebay and was Dorman. So, now I have to wait a while for O'Reillys to order a new cable. Pain in the ass... I was hoping to have that car completed so I could begin the selling process on it.

 

I am shocked at how well maintained under the car actually is for an 89, there's rust, but it's minimal compared to other cars, clearly the undercoating has been good to it. Perhaps I should just sand it all, re-undercoat the hell out of it, and drive that thing till it drops.

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Popped the civvy ECU back into the car. The P71 ECU's shift pattern is setup with the assumption that there is a 3.27 rear gear vs. the 2.73 I have. The car really doesn't like trying to go when it drops into 3rd gear at 27 MPH. I did like how it shifted a bit more aggressively and was more ready to down shift when given the pedal, but under most normal conditions I have just found it to be less than ideal at this point. The civvy ECU just makes everything behave better with the setup.

 

Maybe with the improved shift pattern the gas mileage might be a slight bit better since the engine won't be lugging itself around and I won't have to throttle up to get it in the gear I want. Sometimes you might think 2nd gear just wasn't there just because how quick it would shift through it.

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Changing plugs on a 2000 Exploder XLT 2WD 4.0L SOHC V6. 200k miles, yet very clean. My sister bought it from my coworker for $1500. She spent another $1000 repairing the entire braking system and front end. I'm performing a tune-up with new plugs, wires, O2s, etc... It still needs tires.

 

These are either 200k or 100k plugs. They appear to be original factory parts, or serviced by the dealer at 100k. Not sure. This was the best looking plug of the bunch with about 3x the spec gap. The truck ran surprisingly well for the lack of service. I know the previous owner was strict about oil changes. I've been told replacing the timing set on the 4.0L is a nightmare.

 

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You would scrap that truck before redoing the timing chians and guides. Engine must be pulled and torn apart for that repair.  You could just replace the tensioners which is fairly easy but at this point why bother.

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Exploders :P

 

The transmissions are weak, and their 4.0's are weak. I am glad I no longer have to work on one anymore, the one who bought one, the transmission went out before the 4.0L could.

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My mom's 2003 Explorer with the 4.0L has been the best vehicle we have ever owned. Seriously. Basic maintenance, aside from a new A/C condenser, is all we have done to it. 125-130k or so miles and it still runs great. It's taken our family on most of our vacations and has never let us down.

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The later Gen 2 Explorers with the 5.0 and the 4R70W are basically bullet proof if taken care of properly.

That 2wd 4.0L actually should have 1 less timing chain than the 4wd variant. The 2wd variant lacks the balance shaft in the lower portion of the block which is driven off the crankshaft.

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My mechanic buddy said the same thing, engine must be pulled. Just junk the truck if the timing set is bad. I did notice the engine ID tag states "2WD". He also mentioned the weak trans. Shifts are smooth and positive, no slipping or hunting.

I know the history on the vehicle so I'm not too worried. Basically a grandma car she used to commute back and forth to work. Exceptionally clean. I installed the last set of brakes 100k miles ago. And the rotors were still good enough to turn and reuse 100k later. All highway miles.

When my sister picked up the vehicle, it had been sitting for an extended period. Tires were unsafe to drive on so we stole the wheels from dads Ranger. Smaller, but worked to drive it home. I added two cans of R134 and it blows ice cold.

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Had the car washed then proceeded to get the fender banged to s**t.
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Yep. Bike versus car. I was attempting to turn left from a friend of the family's house. The trouble with their driveway is that to the direct right of the entry are these fir trees they put up, then right beside that at the border of the driveway is a huge bush. You cannot see anything from the right, sidewalk or road. Because the vision of the road is obscured, I don't pull out fast since I go to the center turn lane and then enter the flow of traffic when clear. Any how, anyone coming down the sidewalk from the east would not ever see a car coming out of the driveway. You can see where this is going. I've never liked leaving this driveway for this reason since I've always worried about someone walking down the sidewalk and I appear before them. Well, I managed to do exactly what I was afraid of, except with someone biking down the sidewalk.

The guy was good. He declined any medical service, but I still had the police come out. They ruled it was still private property when the accident occurred, so only a little info was given. The guy just wanted money to get a new bike (frame was bent), so I just got him the cash to replace it. The dude was kinda sketchy and not all there and all he wanted to do was get gone, so I was sorta in the "screw it" mentality. I still felt bad he got bounced off the car, nobody should have to do that.

I've since buffed on the fender with some polish and wax to assess the damage.
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Needless to say, I'm probably just going to grab a straight junkyard one and get it repainted if I can't find a color matching one. The one I have is right dicked. At least the hood and other bits were spared, save for a slight rub mark I found on the hood. I polished on it and it's barely noticeable. This has been a terrible year for this car. First the rear door now this. This car is just drawing unfortunate situations to itself.

TL;DR: Don't grow tall plants excessively close to your driveway to the point where it obscures people's view. That's dangerous as all get out and could lead to unnecessary damage to property which could have been avoided if everyone could see each other.

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Well, that sucks balls.

So... we're going to see an update soon about a mysterious nighttime drive-by tree trimming at your friend's place, right? :ph34r: Ninjas did it?

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The later Gen 2 Explorers with the 5.0 and the 4R70W are basically bullet proof if taken care of properly. That 2wd 4.0L actually should have 1 less timing chain than the 4wd variant. The 2wd variant lacks the balance shaft in the lower portion of the block which is driven off the crankshaft.

 

Not sure if they beefed up the 4R70W in the Exploders, but to make that trans last, a J-Mod, and a cooler will make it a bulletproof transmission. Or so people claim :P

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Super coupe has parking brakes again!!!!

 

I was going to replace both calipers... However, the replacement passenger rear caliper I bought had a severe leak from the parking brake mechanism (at least, that is where it appeared to be coming from)

 

However, the one that was originally on it was working normally, so I put it back on, and just got my money back. I was able to park on a hill, put the trans in neutral, and shut the car off with no roll. However, I always put it in 1st in case it decides to change its mind. Next issue is to address the power driver seat which does not work, then the car will be ready to sell. Car does drive like a dream, however... I do not have space for her, which is sad. But I do want to make sure I sell a car that is fun and ready to drive, not a pain in the ass.

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Changed oil/filter in the Lin Cont, 3500 miles. Ready for winter.

 

From the pan, put it in 5Q jug and exactly 5Q. I empty the pan before back under for the filter so as not to have an accident spill. Filter draining in the pan with a hole punched in it to drain. The filter cannot hold a quart, maybe half at best. I put 6Q in when change and fudge on the 5.8 the book claims. So I used maybe half a Q or so.

 

Used a light and checked under for anything out of good shape, all is good. First time I had noticed all the 02 sensors are accessed from under, mostly open access. Gotta be something on this car easy. Of course I will likely never need to change them.

 

One more car to go and I will really be ready for winter.

 

-chart-

 

 

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Changed on my Explorer the rear sway bar links and the front sway bar bushings. Front sway bars where replaced previously because the OE ones broke off. I think it has less sway now, but I drove it only around the block.

I like that huge, safe feeling truck. Edie Bauer trim 5.0L V8, AWD, 4R70W transmission...

 

Since I started the new job and had to commute 1hr daily, I drive it less, using the Sable instead.

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Engine has had a ping the last few days. Check engine light came on, so I decided to spray the MAF with cleaner. Fixed the problem for now. The sensor isn't looking too great, I need to replace it. The standard ECU is a lot more sensitive to the engine acting up than the P71 ECU. I've had trouble with it pinging on that one, but it didn't seem to care. It was noticeable when the ECU was leaning the mixture out too much, the car just didn't move the way it should.

 

On the plus side, gas mileage did actually come up slightly after swapping the ECU. The car drives much better since the transmission shifts appropriately. I'll have to live with the lazy shift from 1st to 2nd, however. On that note, for the few that have driven the car at WOT, many have said that shift is slow, but the car has always done it since I picked it up, and it doesn't seem to bother anything. I swear my aunt's 2000 MGM has the same lazy, but fluid shift at WOT. That's the only other 281 V8/4R70W car I've been able to compare it to.

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Took it in to get the other pair of new tires mounted and had the other two turned white wall in. I'll be running black wall for now, but at least if I feel like turning them down the road, I can. Excuse everything being filthy:

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The left front wheel is super glossy since the clear coat didn't do the orange peel like the others. The rest will get wet-sanded in a few days along with minor touch up around the wheel lip since some got chipped, but I expect as much when doing a rattle can job. Some might say this is what a Mercury police package could have looked like should one have actually existed in the '90s.

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Volvo is now back together and my daily driver. Couple more issues to work out. Pretty decent power out of that turbo 5.

Fusion should be coming home until January on Thursday of this week. Fresh tune up, intake gaskets, and new tires installed. Have been told it runs great now.

Cougar has been parked for the winter. Going to miss it until spring.

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