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43418Re: [bolger] Re: 55 foot sharpie

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  • wmrpage@aol.com
    May 9, 2005
      In a message dated 5/9/05 1:49:03 AM Central Daylight Time,
      peterlenihan@... writes:

      > Peter Lenihan, who still feels a warm rush of pride when recalling
      > the first time I actually removed and replaced all 4 spark plugs, all
      > on the same day and the darned car started

      This is about as far off-topic as one can get, but I can't restrain myself! I
      still feel the cold sense of chagrin when recalling the first time I changed
      spark plugs.

      My first motorized vehicle with more than 2 wheels was a surplus 1950's
      vintage R(ailway) E(xpress) A(agency?) van-bodied truck with a Canadian Dodge
      flat-head 6.

      I was 16 years old and I had just received a generic automobile repair manual
      as a B-day present from a grandfather. Flush with cash from a summer of
      bagging groceries and mowing lawns, I decided not only to change the plugs, but the
      plug wires, distributor cap, rotor, capacitor and points! There either was no
      fitted plug wire kit for this model at the local parts store, or else the
      "universal" plug wire kit fitted my budget better. (I needed to buy an
      inexpensive timing light and a feeler gauge, too, after all.) The "universal" kit
      consisted of a single length of plug wire, which needed to be cut into individual
      lengths and then have the appropriate terminals crimped on.

      I pulled out the plug wires (not marking any of them, of course), cut the new
      ones to length, crimped on the terminals, changed the rotor, points and
      capacitor and went to install the new wires. Alas, the length of the wires proved a
      less than adequate guide to which plug needed to be attached to which
      terminal on the distributor cap!

      I've forgotten if it took merely lots and lots of hours or lots of days for
      me to get that truck running, but it seemed like forever at the time. A big
      part of my problem was that I could never be sure if the engines inability to run
      was due to improper firing order, improper point gap, improper timing,
      improper something else I did, or whatever ailed to motivate me to do the work in
      the first place.

      There is a lesson to be learned here, but have I learned it? Only at the
      margins, as far as I can tell. I continue to wander through life consoling myself
      with the mantra "Education is expensive!" and only occasionally not wasted!

      Ciao for Niao,
      Bill in MN

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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