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Old 01-30-2012, 05:37 PM   #11
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Re: Anti Technology

Working in the auto service industry, I come across a lot of (older) people who come into the shop asking us to look over their car to because they're about to take a long journey, and they want to make sure the car can make it.

This always baffled me, who was used to modern reliability. Then I was reading an article in a modern car magazine in which they took a classic muscle in original condition on a road trip across the country, commenting amusedly on the three times they broke down along the way.

The thing is, those older customers are coming in to make sure that their new, modern car is capable of making a long trip, because the old, simple cars they were used to might not have made that trip if they didn't take it to a mechanic before hand.


Who here is not confident that their modern daily driver could make a 500 mile road trip on a moment's notice without any work? I know my old 1996 Aspire has done 35,000 miles in my care, and has only ever needed a wheel bearing. Never once has the car let me down. (well, except when the cheap mechanic I took it to screwed up the wheel bearing install, and it blew up on my 10 miles down the road). And this car now has 150,000 miles, and I'd have utter confidence in taking it on a cross country trip tomorrow.
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Old 01-30-2012, 05:48 PM   #12
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Re: Anti Technology

I guess I just look at cars differently after being a mechanic for so many years... VetteOwner, I can direct you to quite a number of short nose and flat nose vans that, despite the doghouse, made servicing the carburetor and plugs into a nightmare you would struggle to forget. Vans have always been a pain to work on. That is just their nature.
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Old 01-30-2012, 08:37 PM   #13
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Re: Anti Technology

lol i know one van i could mention that would want to make you hit your head with every socket u joint and extension in your toolbox: Ford Aerostar, the ford service book says it takes 2.5 -3 hours to change 6 plugs... haha before that we had a 68 dodge ram van with a straight 6 4 speed trans. my dad said it was a breeze to work on.

id take the chevette accross country with only a spare timing belt, and about 5 qts of oil haha.

the s10 ehh maybe if i let it warm up first untill it got quiet (damn lifters)

blazer i would, ghia maybe not so much 3k RPM at 55 mph hmm...newer more hp engine with the old 1960 trans...


but yes i will agree 70,000 miles used to be high milleage in cars (hell model A days 20K was pushing it and it was runnin last legs)

to be honest the few new cars that weve owned every single one had some sensor crap out at 30-40K miles, if its GM truck fuel pump at 80-100K, if its got disc rears calipers at 80K, starter and or alternator 120-140K

i dunno i still feel its all in how you maintain the car/prepare it for a journey. How many of you check the fluids and an overall look see over the engine bay before going on a long trip somewhere? i know i do at the very least more washer fluid haha.
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Old 01-31-2012, 07:47 PM   #14
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Re: Anti Technology

Scott, I like you already. I'm a bit of a Luddite myself.
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Old 02-04-2012, 07:10 PM   #15
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Dont Give Up Hope

It's been a hell of a year, Aptera just went out of business, and NASA called it quits. My flying car of the future seems far away now, pity, getting there, I had no idea of how many adaptations cars would go though.

I want to tell everyone to not give up hope. I am just on a personal journey and need to experience a mechanical machine again. The Focus was so quiet, (When it wasn't breaking down.) as a driver, you seamed much more like a passenger.

Keep trying, even with the new cars on the block, they can be made to be more efficient. Grill blocks, aerodynamics, driving styles. I still feel that the exploration of efficient cars is still in the developement stages.

I was just looking at the Aero Honda and the huge airplane tail he hung on the back of it. He has been slowly developing the car for years now. He keeps on working on the car, like a sculpter, who carefully chips piece after piece off, until he arrives at a masterpiece.

I want to see all the futuristic cars come to light. I keep waiting and watching the movies. I always feel like the cars we drive are at the CLOSE STAGE and soon, I will get my damn flying car.

I really wanted to buy an Aptera, but it seems that has gone the way of the Corbin Sparrow. One employee of Aptera said when they destroyed the last bodies, "It was like watching the Roman's burn the library at Alexandria."

I do wish we would come around to great styling again. The Camry, Jetta, Malibu, and Taurus, all look the same. Cars should be exiting.

What ever old jalopy I get, I will make sure it is at the top of its tune and getting the most mpg it can.
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Old 02-05-2012, 11:15 AM   #16
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Re: Anti Technology

Go to http://gus-stories.org/Stories/Indices/1925-29.htm and read some of these stories. Published in Popular Science magazine from 1925 to 1970, they combined a story with some insights on car maintenance and repair. From reading these stories, you will get an idea of what the attitudes of the times were regarding the longevity of cars. Generally, about 60k miles was pretty much the upper limit. In fact, many cars of the early days had odometers that only went up to 9999.9 miles! I'd be turning the odometer to all zeros every few months! As for newer cars, one of our Corvairs needed an overhaul at about 10 years old/82k miles. The other at 5 yo/45k miles. VW bugs maybe 100k if you were lucky. But they are easy to work on.

Contrast this to my '79 Chevette...sold at 250k miles and it was running strong. '85 Lincoln quit at about 410k miles. I see many '90s Hondas in junkyards with 400k+ miles. Saw a Geo Metro with almost 600k miles.

Generally, it seems that, with a few exceptions, most modern computerized cars outlive their stone-age ancestors many times over. Then again, they have to...you are paying seven years on a new car loan, when you only paid two or three years on an old one.

If you really want a low-tech car that will hold up, consider an old Mercedes Benz. I can't speak for the V8 models, but my 300SD seems to have been actually designed to be serviced.

On a side note...I have changed the rear plugs in a V6 Caravan...not a fun job, but easier than changing plugs in a '67 Impala with a 396
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Old 02-06-2012, 02:11 PM   #17
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Re: Anti Technology

Chevette was a redo of thier vega screwup. iron block and head in the chevette made it diehard much like the 2.4 iron duke.
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Old 02-06-2012, 07:01 PM   #18
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Re: Anti Technology

Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeBob View Post
If you really want a low-tech car that will hold up, consider an old Mercedes Benz. I can't speak for the V8 models, but my 300SD seems to have been actually designed to be serviced.
Parts are spendy though. I have a '61 MB 190 my Dad and I are playing with and while there's plenty of room under there, I have ran into a few placed where servicing isn't exactly the easiest in the world. A fuel line to run from the fuel pump to the carburetor was $74 plus tax at the dealer - our local hydraulics shop told me they had never seen a fitting like it and wouldn't attempt a rebuild. My Dad had a '79 300 SD in the 90's. Can't say if it was hard to service - I was too young and my Dad working too many hours to wrench - but there almost have to be easier to work on alternatives. As a side note, that car was a tough son of a gun, great-looking cars too
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