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Slow, steady car work and TODOs for all the cars

I won’t lie, I haven’t been super motivated to work on my shit heaps project cars since finishing the overhaul of the Jag. However, with work travel looming... it is time to get back on the horse.


Project Dumpster Fire (Saab 900)

Last weekend I dropped the tank out of the Saab as it had eaten yet another fuel feed pump and enough is enough. Dropping the tank was remarkably easy and not easy at the same time.


Due to good access and a quality siphon, siphoning out the almost full tank wasn’t too bad. All the gas was saved and my lawn mower won’t want for gas for a while now.

Only two straps hold the tank in, but due to the way it is mounted between the spare wheel well and rear axle, I had to get the rear end waaaaaaaaaaaay up in the air to allow the tank to drop out. Otherwise it just hung on the inlet port.

Illustration for article titled Slow, steady car work and TODOs for all the cars
Illustration for article titled Slow, steady car work and TODOs for all the cars


With the remainder of the gas out, I pulled out the pumps, bucket, and sender. I also noted three perished grommits that feed that electrical connector for the sender, the fuel return line, and the evap line. None of these are readily available for the 8-valve, but seem to be for the 16-valve. I’m going to guess they didn’t change the fittings when they switched to the new fuel pump style, so I’m going to start by emailing my favorite parts supplier and see if they can assure fit. Either way it looks like those three grommits are going to cost me like $30 total, which is insane.

Illustration for article titled Slow, steady car work and TODOs for all the cars

The Hot Mess (Jaguar S-Type)

The Jag hasn’t got much except driven the last couple of weeks, but that is going to change if I am to drive it 3000 miles next month.


First off is to pull the codes to see if I can clear the check engine light. I know the passenger side cat is gutted, so that is one reason, but there is something wrong with the EGR on that bank too.

Illustration for article titled Slow, steady car work and TODOs for all the cars

Pulling the codes I get two active and two pending:

  1. P0405 - Exhaust Gas Recirculation Sensor A Circuit Low
  2. P0420 (nice) - Catalyst System Efficient Below Threshold Bank 1
  3. P0405 (pending) - Uhhh... same as #1?
  4. P1000 - Just means the battery was pulled, more or less.

Ok, #2 is as expected, #1 will require more research, and #3 and #4 aren’t anything to worry about. I am told the EGR valves on these are prone to getting clogged, but before I do a tear down (they’re WAAAAAY in there) I’m going to see what I can find out from the forums.


Also concerned a failed EGR might make the car run rich and ruin the new cat before I get a chance to fix the EGR? If anyone knows about this one I’m all ears.

Additionally, thanks to all the gritting trucks on the way home from buying it, a new windshield is in my future as the crack that Safelite helpfully put in there while repairing the chips has expanded to a problematic size. That is scheduled for Thursday.


Also also driving this car in the summer is making me realize it needs a tint. I’m usually all about keeping a car stock(ish) but this car really needs some help. I just called a local recommended tint place, but they’re closed for the entire week because of the 4th. I... have questions but OK. I expect it to be around $300 but hope it’ll be less. My usual place wants $450 and is a two hour drive away. Since this isn’t a long term car I think that is a pass.

Lastly the Jag needs a new set of rear shocks. At $320 each I would have avoided it if I could but alas they were well and truly bad. Luckily RockAuto had them on sale for $50 off each, so they’re sitting in my parts pile awaiting install. Allegedly this only takes about an hour per corner, but it’ll be my first time with spring compressors so.... heh.


The Disco (Land Rover Discovery II)

The Discover both needs nothing and needs a whole bunch of shit.

The steering stabilizer is shot and needs to be replaced.

The shocks need to be checked again as the brand I bought (Terrafirma) are known to fail within 3,000 miles and the ride has been... questionable of late.


Both rear door lock actuators need to be replaced as they have never worked and manually opening the doors is a masonic dance and exercise in contortion all in one.

The center console plastics have degraded to the point where the window switches no longer sit properly. I need to get in there and reinforce the weak factory plastic so that all goes together again properly.


It also has a worrying vibration when engine braking from high speeds. I’m hoping this is just the stabilizer, but after that is replaced I’m going to have to worry a lot more. Another common problem is driveshaft u-joints, but mine look and feel fine....

The Alfa (87 Spider)


I’m going to start compiling a shopping list soon, but right now the Alfa is in time out.


The Volvo (C30 Polestar)

Also needs a new windshield.

Also the leather on the drivers seat has lost some of its coloring for reasons I don’t fully understand and will need to be re-dyed. Not exactly on my top priority list.



The Jag and the Disco are 1st and 2nd in line respectively. The Volvo’s windshield will have to wait until next month to make room in the budget.


The Saab is semi-backburnered, but I’ll make time for it. Biggest thing is going to be getting the tank cleaned.

Alfa has a tentative repair goal of November 1st.

Have a bed hog doggo.

Illustration for article titled Slow, steady car work and TODOs for all the cars

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