I have a confession to make, I love cars, I mean I really, really, really love cars. Some people “like” cars, and if people are really into cars they might call themselves a “gearhead”. I really don’t think the term “gearhead” adequately covers my love for all things automotive. From my office, I can listen to the traffic outside and tell you by exhaust note alone if a vehicle is a Ford, Chevy, or Doge, and even more specifically if it is a Mustang, Camaro, Corvette, or a truck from one of the aforementioned brands. I can also diagnose most vehicle issues by sound alone.
Now then, I didn’t right this article in order to flaunt any of my preconceived notions of automotive prowess. Instead, I will tell you about some insights that I learned while working on my 1975 Corvette Stingray, which is in response to a request made by a friend
My old Corvette is in really good shape, mostly thanks to a fairly extensive restoration done by the previous owner. However, like any car that is 36 years old (at the time of this writing), it has some “issues” that have to be ironed out from time to time. The most recent issue was with the brakes, which is really the most important component of a vehicle; after all, it doesn’t matter how fast your car is if you can’t stop. Therefore, in the interest of avoiding a catastrophic brake failure, I decided to replace the entire braking system.
While I have done this on numerous vehicles in the past, the ol’ Vette has proved to be a huge hassle. It is no exaggeration that literally every nut, bolt, and fitting is either rusted solid, stripped, galled, cross-threaded, or the incorrect size. Therefore, there have been many trips to various auto parts stores, online retailers, and long nights full of busted knuckles. Some of these late nights have been particularly taxing because I am generally tired from working all day, and I don’t like having to spend time away from my family, especially my two year old son whose sole wish is to help daddy on the car, but who must be refused because of the large amounts of automotive chemicals that have been spilled onto the floor. Read more…