. . . While you Wait

I sent a photo of the brake line mis-match to the seller and got a quick response: “We’ll make it right.” All the lines, old and new, went into a box and in the mail. They should be delivered to the dealer tomorrow. Having the new ones in my hands within the week is unlikely, but possible. In any case, I have a week, probably two, with the car on jacks, brakeless.

Toys
Toys to keep me occupied.

The forced downtime and some found money mean I can play a little bit. I ordered up some replacement skirt pins and seals (Someone apparently threw the old pins away! Who does that?) and bought a car audio system.

I like the look of the car without the fender skirts, and I’ll admit to a little worry about theft in keeping the skirts on. But at the moment, the skirts have no real home and it’s just a matter of time before they go crashing to the floor from some high, teetering, “temporary” storage place. Better to have them on the vehicle.

The old AM radio in the ‘Bird still works. With an aftermarket antenna on the car, it is able to pick up exactly one station, a local news outlet. I’ve heard enough reports on local fires (“I can see smoke coming from the building!”) and am dying for something more upbeat. I don’t want to cut up the interior, so after a great deal of thought, I’m planning to mount the head unit under the passenger seat. I’ll control it, somewhat blindly, with a remote. For the speakers, I’m borrowing an idea I saw in college and used in a truck I had years ago: loose speaker enclosures.

Speaker Enclosures
Speaker enclosures, in the rough.

Most modern car stereos have removable faceplates that connect via a simple 20-pin plug and socket. I spent quite a bit of time in the last few days looking for a cable that would allow a remote installation of the faceplate from the unit itself, but no such thing exists. On-line, I saw that a few folks have soldered network cabling to both ends, but the end result looks more experimental than functional. If I can figure out a way to do a remote mount, the ideal location for the faceplate would be in the center console “glovebox.” For now, anything would be better than another local fire report, so I’ll start with the unit under the seat and keep looking for a remote solution.

Lastly, a colleague on the VTCI forum solved a long-running idle problem I’ve had. He suggested, and I completely agree, that the idle is poor when the engine is hot due to fuel vaporization in the carburetor. He used a Holley heat shield to solve the issue on his car, and I’ve ordered one as well. In addition, I picked up a good used water jacket / carb spacer to replace the clogged up one I’m using.

Fun stuff, but what I’d really like are shiny new brake lines that fit.

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