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Old 04-01-2009, 04:11 AM   #1
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Why will these little pissy problems not leave me alone. I fix one little part here, and I look over here to find another one has just broken. My last 3 cars have been that way. I just fixed my coolant leak the other day at the heater hoses, and thought it was all good. Now today sitting in my car at work on lunch a co worker lets me know I have a big puddle of coolant leaking from under the car. I pop the hood and see coolant sprayed all over the headlight motor area on the driver side. Looks like the entire top tank has come loose from the core and is leaking ALL the way around. So ****! A new radiator is needed. Then last week or the week before I noticed something in the right rear clunking really bad. I'm thinking its maybe just be the sway bar mounts or linkage loose, but who knows, maybe its something more fun to fix. Then tonight on the way home my little pestering friend from the last 3 or 4 months paid me a visit since it was raining. My goddamn top seals are leaking like a bastard and I end up with wet legs by the time I get to where I'm going. Of course don't forget the broken speedo cable from a few weeks ago... I can't even afford this right now, since I'm having enough of a time trying to pay my taxes, and about to make a move to another state. Here I was thinking the turbo was soon. I am thinking I'm going to drop the hopes of making this a daily driver and just strip it and track it. Take out the new leather seats and buy some racing seats, harness, either swap roll bars or make mine work with a hardtop, and upgrade some other stuff (do away with the street friendly suspension) and track it. Find something else to daily. Thats also not including the new top and paint I wanted to do if I was going to daily it. This **** is driving me crazy.
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Old 04-01-2009, 04:33 AM   #2
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If you think DDing an unreliable car is expensive, tracking a reliable car will bankrupt you. Trust me.
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Old 04-01-2009, 04:39 AM   #3
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Money isn't really an issue (well right now it is, but once I'm settled in down the road it should be fine) its more just the fact its these little parts. None of which I find fun to repair or replace. Why couldn't it be something I haven't already replaced or didn't plan on touching. The top seals could have waited for a new top down the road. The radiator could have waited till I get the turbo at least. Suspension shouldn't be making noises, Ive replaced everything except the sway bar links and the shock mounts. Its just all coming at once when I happen to be broke. I won't mind tracking it so much since it wont really be necessary, and won't be my daily. But when my only daily is pissing me off like this... it gets old after a while. Now I just need some expensive relays to fail, and maybe lets have the trans take a **** on me so I will be stuck without a car. Maybe I didn't jinx myself.

And I just took thursday and friday off work to relax... looks like I get to fix little **** problems on my car. Woohoo. At least radiatorbarn only wants $130 for a new radiator, all metal too!

I'm also getting antsy about my WB hub adapter. I understand the nature of ordering from overseas companies, but damn, I placed my order like 2 months ago. They have been on their way for over a month. I have this nice Nardi wheel sitting here collecting dust.

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Old 04-01-2009, 08:39 AM   #4
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Your car is legally old enough to drive itself and to marry its cousin in Missouri and Indiana. Some random failures from time to time are par for the course.

The plus side is that you'll reach a point when pretty much every replaceable part has been, and better than before (eg: your metal radiator, the NB-style shock mounts you're going to replace your current ones with, etc.) My '92, for instance, doesn't leak a drop of oil, or any other fluid for that matter, due largely to the fact that over the years I've replaced pretty much every seal and gasket on the car.
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Old 04-01-2009, 09:27 AM   #5
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This is why I basically replaced everything on my car with something new.
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Old 04-01-2009, 03:44 PM   #6
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I understand this, but I've already spent so much, and I'm still so far away from that point. I consider this my learning Miata. I really want to buy another to do right the first time. Alot of stuff I want to redo, like the suspension. Still lack a top, paint, **** load of smaller parts... eh, but I've already spent so much on this one I'm going to lose my *** if I decide to make it a track only car. Oh well, what can you do.
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Old 04-01-2009, 03:59 PM   #7
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Try getting a 1962 TR4 for a DD. That car kept me broke for 6 years, and had to be worked on every weekend. Try going on a date, and haveing to fix the famous Lucas electronics with your GF in the car.

Be thankful that good quality parts are still available for our Miatas. Some day there will only be after market junk, and then it will get shitty.
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Old 04-01-2009, 04:49 PM   #8
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Don't own a 15+ year old car unless you plan on shelling out some $$$$$ for mantainance...it's all apart of the game.
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Old 04-02-2009, 05:16 AM   #9
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Again though, its not a money issue really, its an issue with it being little things that for the most part aren't crucial, but **** me off and bother me. I get one thing fixed and 2 more break. After this much time and money spent on the car, I figured just about everything that could go bad has, but I guess its not done kicking and fussing yet.

I've had 4 people today tell me my car was leaking fluid. "Yeah, thanks, I know". Now off to buy the radiatorbarn radiator. I hope it doesn't take too long to get here.
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Old 04-02-2009, 10:38 AM   #10
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I'm right there with you. I'm too cheap to plunk down money on an actual, reliable car, and at the moment I don't have the time or the space to go through the cars and get everything up to date, so I'm on a "fix it as it breaks" basis. Of course, it's mostly a pain when something breaks when you have other freakin' plans for the day/week/weekend/whatever. Thankfully I have multiple vehicles and can get by, but it's annoying as hell.

I just can't wait until this summer when I'm finished school and can move to a lower cost of living area, get a place with a garage, and take a week or two per vehicle to get everything that could possibly go bad replaced. Shouldn't be *that* expensive in the grand scheme of things, especially when one considers at the end of it I'll have essentially two brand new vehicles, and one reasonably newish one (there's no way I'm spending more than $100 on the Saturn, if it dies I'll push it off a cliff and buy another $1000 car).
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Old 04-02-2009, 03:34 PM   #11
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take the car apart, then put it back together.
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Old 04-02-2009, 04:19 PM   #12
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I hear you man, just about done with turbo build, and then water pump decides to crap out.

Karma's a bitch, still trying to figure out who's cereal I **** in.
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Old 04-03-2009, 12:19 PM   #13
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I took special care to check everything and replace every seal in my car when I put it together. Sure, it cost a ton to do that, but its dead-nuts reliable.
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Old 04-03-2009, 04:11 PM   #14
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My engine should be 100% reliable (unless of course I blow it up, or I didn't do something right) but things like the wiring harness, a/c system, alternator and steering systems are all untouched under the hood. Suspension is all new minus the mounts and factory springs. So things that could go wrong are narrowed down, but apparently still not enough to stop things from breaking all at once.
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Old 04-04-2009, 11:19 PM   #15
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I got my radiator today. I was amazed to see it on a Saturday, especially since I just ordered it early AM Friday. Install was simple, only had to ever so slightly drill out the 2 holes that the lower rubber "*****" go through. The ones that slide into the little seats to hold the bottom of the radiator. Other than that everything was OEM fit. Fans went on without any hassle. Ran it for a little while and it looks leak free.

Does anyone else run the RadiatorBarn radiator, and did anyone have any issues with radiator caps. I have one of the caps with the pull tab to vent pressure, and unlike the old radiator, the tab doesn't seem to pull itself down. Almost like its too tight/ neck not deep enough, and its pushing the cap all the way to vent. I can run it up to temp and pull the **** and nothing happens as far as venting. I'm scared this is going to mean no pressure release.

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Old 06-04-2009, 02:09 AM   #16
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God damn it. Now add my gauge electrical gremlin and tonight a flat tire. I thought at first it was my alignment slipped in the front. I should have checked it pulling out of my work parking lot, but I didn't notice it enough until I was half way home. Of course I hadn't put my spare back in yet, so I had to drive about 5 miles on a flat. Every flat I have ever gotten (probably 6-8) have all been sidewall blowouts, never slow nail in tread leaks like normal people. So now I had to drop $140 on 2 new tires for the front. At least I decided not to sell my stock wheels and tires. Can use them up front until my tires get here.

Then Sunday afternoon, my home a/c took a dump. Of course right before the hottest week we have had so far this season, low 90's a few days this week. The squirrel cage fan threw a fit and detonated. The drum made contact with the housing and ripped half of the fins off in a mangled mess of metal. So that was a few days with no a/c, and $100 for a replacement drum/fan. Now my a/c in the car is starting to sound like its on its last leg. When I first turn it on after any period of sitting turned off, it makes all kinds of chirps and squeaks and rattles. So a new compressor is soon in the works. It truly never ends...
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Old 06-04-2009, 09:10 AM   #17
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A year ago I'd have said "Bah! Who needs A/C?"

Being back in Florida however is making me regret removing it...
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Old 06-04-2009, 09:15 AM   #18
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I removed mine and still don't regret it (may be hot, but I remind myself how damn heavy that compressor was).

And I live in Houston, which is both hot and incredibly humid.

I drive with the top down 95% of the time though, and am thinking about one of those cool breeze things since I'm usually in pants and steel toe boots for work.
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Old 06-04-2009, 11:32 AM   #19
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Your mechanical empathy is turning into mechanical animosity. IOW - You are harshing out your car's mellowness, dude.
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Old 06-04-2009, 01:44 PM   #20
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I've got a radiator barn radiator in my car too; it's the larger automatic one. One of them didn't last a year before it sprung a pinhole leak in the top, near the cap.
They have a lifetime warranty though so I got a new one in a couple days for free... I've had this one for a little more than a year now without any problems.

I've gotten to the point where I've replaced just about everything mechanical on my car except the transmission and diff.

Now the biggest "problem" is chasing down the miscellaneous rattles/squeaks that come with having stiff suspension/solid motor mounts.
I swear you find and fix one and three more pop up.

It will get better, I was in the same boat as you after my motor blew up... long story.. .

Good luck!
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