Project smart Update: SO MANY EMOTIONS

I’ve had the best morning ever, then the worst morning ever, then the best morning ever again...all within the span of 30 minutes.

Alrighty. So this morning, I had some extra time to get to work. With the weather super nice, I became determined to see this car in full convertible mode. That’s when I decided to do the one thing the previous owner told me to never do until the roof got fixed: Use the key fob to open the roof.

Indeed, the roof struggled to open (that’s something that is easily fixed with smart-branded cabrio roof grease); then something surprising happened: Once the roof reached the end of the track, it just...fell down.


Upon close examination, I discovered that the motors aren’t connected to to the mechanism in the rear. I hit the button on the key one more time, the roof locked in the down position.

After I took the roof rails out, I performed a quick Google Search and learned that I had this all wrong. The roof was never meant to move itself into position like it would in newer smarts. In these older smarts, when it reaches the end of the track, you’re supposed to move it into place by hand. That’s why I couldn’t get the roof open and that’s probably why the previous owner couldn’t either...we both expected it to work like the newer cars.

So, the hard part of my restoration project is resolved...I guess? I bought the car at a low price because the roof was broken. It’s not broken at all! (Via my Snapchat video)


I would have gotten in a photoshoot, but the reason I put the car in storage showed its ugly face this morning. On the way to work (fully topless) I found myself wanting to double downshift so I can hit an oh so sweet apex. I downshifted and feathered the throttle for what would have been a perfect turn. Aaaand...while the gear indicator said I was in fourth gear, fourth didn’t seem to be engaging. Sure enough, the four disappeared and displayed this familiar symbol (pic not from this morning):


Since I had no way to maintain forward momentum, I just let the car glide. The car stopped on the top of the arch on a four lane (two lanes each direction) bridge without a shoulder. Oh boy.

With the clutch actuator failing to grab a gear, I started preparing for the event in which I would either call in late or call in. But, first I had to get the car to a safe place where I wouldn’t be killed working on it. I used the car’s silly light weight to my advantage and I stuck out a single foot. I started “scooting” the car, like you would with a Razor scooter. I got it off the bridge and into a nice and wide shoulder.


All I did was take the battery’s positive off, wait a minute, then put it back on. This resets all the computers in the car and alas, I was on my way!

A future fix will probably end up being lubing/replacing the clutch actuator, but at least for now, I was able to get to work.!


Whew! How’s everyone’s Friday so far?

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