Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Baby don't be so mean!

At last, the first real day of work. It feels nice to actually get something on the car done. Ben and I were up early in the AM to see about getting that decade-old gasoline out of the tank.
"No Problem." I say, "I've seen people siphon tanks all the time! We just need some hose"
After a quick trip to Lowes for some clear rubber tubing, its time to give it a pull.
What happens in the next couple hours or so is a little hazy, probably due in large part to the fact that I JUST INHALED BAD GASOLINE VAPOR. I do remember having to burp occasionally, and being very entertained at how my breath smelled like gasoline.
So after this little adventure, we cruise over to Kragen and find a siphon kit for the princely sum of 7 dollars. Now I feel really smart (and its not just the gas fumes talking).

Once we make sure the tank is dry (or as dry as we can get), we throw 5 gallons of fresh Shell 87 Octane into the tank and try to fire the engine. We hook the jumpers up (yes again, we'll buy a battery when we're god damned good and ready!) and give it a turn. The motor turns over. and over. and over. So I pull out the keys, and the starter keeps on turning. After some confusing looks from the rest of the team "Hey dumbass, stop trying to start the car" We realize the starter solenoid is stuck on, and so we have to yank the battery cables off to finally shut it down.

Back at Kragen again, new starter solenoid in hand, we decide to go ahead and clean up the spark plugs to try and get it started. This whole time Andrew and I are busy ripping the interior out of the car and chucking it into the lawn(Not my lawn). While it looked like menial work, it was probably the most fun part of this project I've had yet.

Finally, we have most of the interior out and we're ready to start it again. This time? The melodious 5.0L V8 rumbles to life! Ben takes Andrew around the block, and proceeds to attempt our first (of many I'm sure) smoky burnouts.
Whatever bonus points he lost in the 'lack of smoke' factor, Ben more then made up for in 'Almost wreck into Eamon's Focus'. After some more shenanagins, the motor dies, and we roll it into the garage and just call it a weekend.

Hopefully we can get the carb rebuilt before the next big work weekend, and then get the motor to a place where we feel comfortable that it won't instantly rattle apart as soon as it hits redline.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Who brought tools?

This marks the first time the Mustag Bay Area team has been able to see the pony live and in the flesh. I must say, the 80's mustangs are probably one of the ugliest to ever roll out of Detroit (Except the 70's Mustang II's).
We would like to thank Cal State University - Chico for being considerate enough to schedule their graduation in line with our project start date and a 3 day weekend. They sure are swell.

After gathering 5/6ths of the team (where's Andrew?), we quickly solved the first major obstacle of this build. "What kind of beer do we want?"
After celebrating our first problem's resolution, we set about to clean the car up and get it ready for the first crank. A quick trip to Autozone and we had a couple gallons of Shell Rotella to change the engine oil.
Unfortunately, years of sitting left the original oil filter completely stuck, so some ingenuity with a phillips-head screwdriver was needed to get it loose. After we drained the oil, it was time to crank it and see what kind of condition our Mustag was truly in.

click. Dead Battery. Oh well, we planned to replace that all along, so out come the jumper cables to find out if the starter solenoid really was dead. It turns out that it cranked over fine, but there was a fuel delivery problem. Actually, there was a fuel leak, and we were inadvertently dumping gasoline all over the driveway. Hi-larious.
Note the cigarette in Ben's hand as we do this. You can tell intelligence is our greatest asset.

That should be it for this weekend. We'll tackle the fuel leak and drain the gas tank next time.

Field of Dreams

Shortly after the Altamont 2008 24 Hours of LeMons, I received this little craigslist gem in my inbox.
"1985 5.0 Mustang - $500"

Oh god, this is perfect.
After sending multiple emails into the void, we finally hear back from the seller. Apparently, it had been sitting in his field in the middle of Butte county for at least 5 years, and did not currently run. The seller thinks there might be some electrical gremlins, and knows it will never pass smog in its current state.
All of these problems are a veritable shopping list for a prospective LeMons racer.
  • Lost Title
  • Can't Smog
  • Bored Owner
  • Questionable Street-worthiness

Yes. This should do nicely.
We can probably even get him to knock the price down a bit to give us some breathing room for some Junkyard Special suspension components.

Later that weekend, we send the Chico team to go pick her up. Jay rented a trailer and hooked it up to the Rolling Red State to go bring the Mustag home. (Incidentally, this would be the last masculine act Jay would ever perform, as he's now moved to San Francisco and traded his truck in for a Saab.)


First Post!

We're all really excited to get the team sorted out and underway.

In the future we hope to use this page as a tool to document our journey towards absolute embarrassment to both the racing community, and society as a whole.

Additionally, we're hoping that if we trick prove to the LeMons judges that we're too stupid to effectively cheat, they won't crush the 'Bitchin Mustag'