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Entries in Nostalgia (4)


Car Repair Nostalgia

Although we read about the new here, the just launched there, the upcoming in just a few months somewhere else. In addition to new technology here, there, and all over the place.

Somedays its envigorating to just stop, and look back in a reflective fashion.

Here we go...


If you are of a certain age you remember the various hand tools used back in the day. Ratchets, extensions, sockets were commonplace. Flat and philip screwdrivers, ball peen hammers, and so on. Air tools were usually a substantial impact wrench, and subsequently a ratchet, both dragged around an air line, and were noisy.

Today many of the air powered tolls have been replaced by the electric equivalent with a battery.

Tool Boxes:

A couple of generations ago what was a sophisticated tool box was usually built up from a few components on casters. Yes...Snap On ruled the day. Tool boxes today are a thing of beauty, totally cool.

Distributor - Coil - Spark Plug Wires:

If you remember replacing ignition points on a regular basis, using a dwell meter, coils going bad and going nuts trying to figure it out. Plug wires wearing out, the same with distributor caps and rotors. Setting the timing with a timing light.

It  sounds old, archaic, a lost art. Even on TV shows some of the cars that are restored the engines run like shit.

The lost art is to get an engine to run well, and start in a crisp, lively fashion.


If you remember batteries with acid, battery caps, the posts and cable connectors getting all corroded with the "fuzzy stuff". have been around for a while, you also remember cleaning the battery posts, and cable connectors.

Today its maintenance free batteries, and screw in cables. Yes...batteries still wear out.

Human Knowledge:

Good ole human knowledge is priceless. With all the technology, modern tools, testing and diagnostic equipment. In many instances it facilitates diagnosing, and repairing a vehicle.

But...having an intrinsic understanding of how a vehicle funstions, what the various components are supposed to do, how one thing relates to another. Its priceless...

It goes back to the days when the human brain stored the knowledge base, experience, skill set to understand how a vehicle worked. Understanding what was amiss, which today shows up as an error code.

Agreed...its becoming a lost art that is also extremely challenging to replace...perhaps even bordering on the impossible.




Rebuilding an Engine

There is a ton of nostalgia in this video. It's a flathead (not a fan), removing an engine with the transmission, hand tools, washing parts, re assembling with new parts. Its all cool...especially if at a stage in your life you were rebuilding engines as a week end project.




Engine Overhaul

The video caught our attention, its a vivid reminder, and more important nostalgia from decades ago.

Here is the deal

Back in the day with limited budgets, tuitions, older cars, rebuilding an engine over a week end was almost normal. Using the same procedures as they are doing in the video.

We used to be at least 2, and often more to deal with the parts washing.

In the video they do not mention a few budget tricks to polish a camshaft, cutting the ridge at the top of the cylinder, and a few other items like washing the block and a bunch of parts with laundry detergent to get all the grease residue out.

Its not the car, or the engine, its the nostagia of this video that is priceless.

The goal was to finish on a Saturday night even late or early into Sunday morning.

Don't even get The Colonel going about how many engines were overhauled on a week end.



Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.3-16

If you ever wondered what a 190E 2.3-16 was/is all about the owner provides you with a brief description. If you remember Ayrton Senna made his mark in Europe, and was noticed driving one of these cars.

Yes its a Cosworth head from back in the day when Cosworth was the undisputed leader in designing cross flow heads with 4 valves per cylinder. Look at the shift pattern on the transmission set up to keep the engine revving especially on a track.

Were they good cars? A high revving 4 cylinder Benz back in the day had limited appeal to a customer base more attuned to V8's. You can quickly conclude that a high revving engine would have some oil consumption which was the case with the "16 valver".