Sounds seem to be the scariest things to a person who doesn't know what they are. They are an annoyance to me, at the least they are a notification of something not being quite right and at worst just annoying. However, they seem to cause extreme panic to other people. So this time I try to get rid of all the sounds Silvaki makes. Considering she is 18 years old, awwww she just became an adult, this is a tall order.
The first sound to tackle was the squeaking sound when she bounces on her suspension and when the steering wheel is turned, which is really the same thing because the change in the direction of the wheel produces some suspension travel. Since Silvaki had recently gone swimming (long story) mud and water would have dried out her suspension bushings. when they get a lot of heat from a long journey it's not entirely surprising that they would start squeaking. The sound seemed to come from the right side so I removed the wheel and sprayed a lubricant generously on the bushings of the lower A arm. The sound was gone.
The next sound was the left front door. Whenever the door opens or closes it scrapes against the fender. The fender was fixed a while back when Silvaki was hit by another car while parked. It seems the panel beater had not tightened and aligned the fender. So I aligned it, and tightened the bolt behind the door hinge that holds it. Noise number two was gone. I was on a roll, or so I thought.
Next was the brakes. The 2e has a solid non ventilated brake disc. I feel it doesn't radiate heat well and as a result whenever the brakes get too hot the disc warps a little. The warpage is actually tiny but it can produce some vibrating when brakes are applied, which would be felt through the paddle and the steering wheel. It also makes a sound. In an effort to get rid of this sound I had brake discs skimmed. Lets discuss the result of this later. It's worth pointing out that I have skimmed them before and had a perfect result.
While I was down there I realised that the CV boots were torn. I found this surprising since I had replaced the CV joints only a year or so ago. They should last longer than this. However maintaining a car you don't drive regularly you always have some questions about how things happen on it. I had driven it for about 2 years before and did a joburg trip twice I think, I usually drove it at it's top speed all the way back, it always seemed quite reliable to me. I love the car, so it's hard for me to face the potential of it having to go. Like any car that has been in my possession for any amount of time I remember the very first time I drove it. I enjoyed it so much I wrote a Facebook post about it. I guess I just have to accept that it can't be kept if the regular users aren't happy with it. If only I had Jay Leno money, I could just buy it but alas....
I had a single boot in stock, so rather than just replace one I thought replace both. So I removed the CV axles. This involves removing the lower ball joint from the A arm, the upper one that controls the steering from the top and then pulling the axle from the differential which in front wheel drive cars is part of the gearbox housing. I put the axles on the table in front of my garage and when through the process of replacing the boots. Check it out on instagram at weekendwarriorsa. So what you do is, you remove the cups, clean the grease which is an extremely messy job that leaves you smelling for days. Then you remove the snap rings, slide the bearings out and then slide out the inner boot and then slide in the new boot and repeat the process in reverse. The old torn boots you can just tear off. Everything was easy, I was quite impressed with my mechanical prowess. I didn't even need to watch a tutorial once.
Well the joy of it all was short lived when I had to remove the gearbox filler plug. You see when you remove the drive axles the oil in the gearbox runs out and so you have to refill it. It looked quite dirty so I thought drain what's left and just replace it all together. I spent 4 days trying to remove this filler plug. it was seized so badly that I completely destroyed it trying to remove it. I have to admit it was one of the most depressing times I have had doing a DIY job of any kind. There was fights and misery of all kinds. To add to my misery my neighbor decided to come give me unnecessary shit about working in front of her garage that she hasn't used in 2 years. Woooosah, but that's a story for another day. A professional mechanic friend came over and helped me remove the plug. I poured some new gearbox oil and all was fine with the world or so I thought.
I assembled the front put the tires back on but i used the old brake pads instead of buying new ones after skimming. This was a monumental mistake. The pads ruined the skimming job and we were halfway to square one. I got new pads which made it a quarter way to square one but I would have preferred to be at square two. I was kind of devastated. I haven't been this emotionally drained since I rebuild Yellowbone's engine. I can be a bit sensitive I guess but don't we all have loved ones that when they complain you feel pain in your soul? you spent much time trying to make their world perfect but fail and know they won't be happy and just sad that you couldn't make their problems completely go away? maybe it's just me.
Anyway the car left and before it reached it's destination a battery light came on. The only thing I can think of is that the alternator is not charging the battery. I don't know why that would be. It left here fine. A petrol engine needs the battery to make sparks for the engine so it's essential that the battery is charged. There is a few things I would want to try but I would have to ask people who won't feel like the effort and feel like a problem is the worst it can be and it's the end of the world. This makes it so hard to diagnose from 400 km away. This also means that a week and a half I spent making sure it would be perfect were really for nothing because when the loved one isn't happy it feels to me like it's completely and utterly the end of the world. I don't mind having problems, I wish they could all be mine...