Opened the hood after the truck dropped off my Golf so I could start pulling shit off (I was going to do the timing belt and water pump when I did the axle, and also distributor) and the struts had about a quarter inch of clearance between the bottom of the top bit (you know what I mean) and the top of the tower. I last looked under the hood Saturday, when I got gas and didn’t notice this.

So, here’s a list of shit I have to do by August 8th, in order of most to least important:

1. Passenger CV axle (it went out today)

2. Struts (I think if I compress the spring when on jack stands, I’ll be alrught and won’t have to buy new ones. Any thoughts?)

3. Fuel pump/sending unit (there’s a decent/noticable power loss intermitently, which I’m pretty sure is the pump’s fault. I got a new one for free, so cost isn’t an issue)

4. Timing belt/water pump (previous owner did the belt, but not the pump for some reason?)

5. Distributor (bad hall effect sensor, which is not servicable. Have to do the whole dizzy)

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6. Brakes (squeak a bit, but still stop the car with no problems)

7. Manifold absolute pressure sensor (I have a code for it, but it’s whatever. Probably just a leaky hose. Haven’t done any investigation)

8. O2 sensor (good joke. I’m never doing that)

My intention this weekend was to do 1, 3, 4, 5. We’ll see what I actually get to. 2 is new and takes precedence. I think it’s probably from the flatbed. The truck had one ratchet strap per wheel, and the driver put them tight enough to deform the tires. That may have put enough side load on to do some stuff. I’ll check the rear struts tomorrow as well.

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Oh yeah, so what happened was....

As I drove back from Cleveland Saturday night at like 2 AM (I am a youth) I heard a knocking sound under acceleration in time with wheel speed as I got on the highway. It went away, then came back. I pulled into,a sevice plaza and locked my wheels left so I could look into the wheel well. The boot on the outer passenger side CV joint was open- the hose clamp had slid off (I compared to driver’s side- hose clamp in place). Great. It must have gotten stuff inside. Oh well. I got home and ordered the full axle the next day. Today, Tuesday, I drove to work. No sound. I leave to go home. Turn left to get on the highway. Accelerate. WHAPWHAPWHAPWHAPWHAP FUCK CLUTCH OUT COAST TO THE SHOULDER CAR OFF. Here we are. 

VWs are reliable.