Tuesday, January 31, 2012

It’s Better To Be Stupid Than Unlucky

My new motto since it was borne out so well last evening. Having convinced myself Heidi’s engine issue was another leaky carb float, I tore down a carb I knew had a good float, packed the requisite tools into the toolbag, and drug my trouble light and looonnnnngggg extension cord out to the curb. I was going to just pull the top off the newly replaced carburetor and swap the float out, but a little voice said, “test to see if it’s really flooding.” I had the keys, so I turned on the engine and wouldn’t you know it? The engine fired, but while it still ran, barely, the carburetor didn’t overflow. Once I knew it wasn’t a float issue, I started looking and listening more closely. It didn’t take long to discover that I’d stupidly left off the vacuum hoses after I’d balanced the carbs the other day. Once reconnected the engine’s idle smoothed right out and a test drive showed she was running like new again.

With that resolved, I moved on to Lucy who was now back in the garage. First order of business was changing the oil and filter. Once I’d refilled the crankcase with 10W30 Shell Rotella, I started her up and checked for leaks. While the engine was still running I went looking for the exhaust leak that was so aurally noticeable. I found it at the muffler’s input joint. Off went the engine, and up on a jackstand went Lucy’s right rear. As I pulled the right rear wheel to optimize access, I spied a nail embedded in the tire tread. I fixed that issue by putting in a plug and topping off the air pressure. With the wheel out of the way, I could more closely inspect the leaking area of the exhaust. I found the top of the exhaust pipe had a crack in it. Off to the shelves for a GUP. I found a suitable replacement, but it was currently still attached to a cherry bomb glasspack. I was able to remove the two tubing clamps, but I’m afraid I’ll need to cut off the muffler. It was about time to go inside, so I made sure Lucy was still drivable by wiring up the end of the muffler where the crack is just in case it decides to break clean through.

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