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OK, so now my cars are falling apart. Literally.

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2 weeks ago the fuel pump on my DD failed. Still worked kinda, but wasn't flowing enough volume to pull hills at freeway speeds. Replaced with OEM pump, all better.


Saturday I'm headed home after taking a load of stuff up to my Barn (100 miles away) and visiting my Grandma until midnight (who else has 87-year old grandparents that stay up until past Midnight and still go to church at 9AM the next day? I can only dream of being that active at 87). So it's 1AM on I-5 and aside from getting passed by some idiot slaloming traffic at 100mph, there wasn't much going on. Until I hear a loud BANG and something banging off the floor and gas tank as it exits the truck. Since nothing seemed out of the ordinary, I figured I must have hit some debris. That or the air pump tensioner finally fell off, since it siezed a week ago and I pulled the belt.


Well, when I slow down for my exit all of a sudden my fan belt starts screaming. Lights go dimmer, so I shut off the heater and the wipers. No difference. It stops squealing when I'm at idle, but give it even a little off idle and SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.


It's raining, I'm 2 miles from home, screw it if the belt comes off it comes off.


It made it home fine, so I pop the hood, look in, the alternator is sitting sideways. Both lower bolts, gone. Not broke off, gone.


It's 1:00AM I'm not dealing with this.


Sunday decide, well, probably should get the 510 running in case I need it. Has a flat tire, which went flat last week at work. My spare was flat, had no jack OR lug wrench, but had an air compressor so just aired it up. It's flat again, so better fix it. Pull hubcap off, well, whadda you know, only 2 FRIGGING LUG NUTS! I've only had the bloody car 7 years, and apparently I've never pulled this hub cap off. I know I've had both rears off since I changed both those tires, and the driver's side didn't have hubcaps, so this is great.


Pull wheel, notice brake rotor is grooved to death. Pads are worn out. That's what I get for not inspecting them for 7 years. Usually they quit working by that point... I know I checked the other side, and there was lots of pad. Hmm. In my defense, the car has sat more than ran since it's always pissing me off by having carb jet fouling issues.


Only spare tire I have is a 155 off my old B210, and I can't drive it with no brakes so I put the tiny 155 on and order new pads off Rockauto. Get 2 sets to be sure, since they had clearance 50% off ones in stock.


Air up the flat tire to look for a leak, it's coming out the sidewall. Right through the side, it should have split entirely. Got lucky there.


Then fix alternator bracket on truck, but my spare parts are in Monroe. Joy. Hunt for bolts, have to steal off a spare engine.


Today, when leaving work the truck starts funny. Starter made a bad grinding noise. Never did that before. It had been starting hard, so maybe getting weak. Stopped at a place to grab dinner, came out, starter just makes the grinding noise and won't crank. Can hear the starter spin up. Dammit. Pop hood... starter in HANGING off the back of the engine. Maybe 2 threads on the upper bolt are still screwed in. Fortunately have socket set, will travel, so tightened it back up. Bottom bolt was gone, so have to get another.


Usually I have a hell of a time getting bolts to come loose, but these are coming out all by themselves. Guess it's time to go through the whole truck tightening stuff. This is what I get for putting 40,000 miles on a truck in 15 months, that had had 2500 miles the prior 12 years.

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Sounds like you needed to spend some quality time with your Datsuns! Bummer though, it always seems to happen at the most inopportune moment.


If it makes a you feel any better, I've had both bolts back out of the bottom of the alternator bracket before and found it hanging from the adjustment arm when I opened the hood too! I put lock washers on them, no more issues.

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Problem is I haven't had time to do jack for a couple years. Basically fix when needed fixing. Work on cars during the summer when it isn't raining. Problem is they break in the winter.


Today, more fun. The '74 refused to start, why I don't know but it had gas and the ignition module was working enough to make the tach read. Probably moisture in the cap, it tends to do that. Flooded it and that was that. That left the wagon, with its bad brakes, and teh Chevy that's still hooked up to the trailer. Well, its brakes are even worse now- one of the rear shoes must have come loose because I heard a "clunk" and the rear end tried to jump out of the car. Both the service brakes and the parking brake make a gawdawful noise. Parked it and took the Chevy. Diesel is $3.75 + a gallon and it gets 15MPG. Oh joy. So, basically have canceled all weekend plans and car repairs are on order. And I badly need to fix the engine hoist so I can fix the cars that have bad engines.


If the Chevy goes down all I'll have left is the Deuce and a half.

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The GOOD news was that last weekend's predicted rain didn't hit until 4PM.


So, I managed to get the starter on the 620 reinstalled properly. I was surprised to find the bottom starter bolt was still there, so I didn't lose either bolt.


The alternator was another story. I pulled the bracket to find the front lower bolt snapped off INSIDE the hole. Tried to drill it out but my good drill bits are in Monroe and the crappy B&D ones I have in Tacoma went sideways and drilled into the cast iron (which is softer than the bolt). So, I pulled a mount off another L20B and used that. So now have all 3 bolts again.


Changed the front brakes on the 510 without incident. Rears, well, I already wrote what happened there. Linings had come off the shoes, and I'm not expecting the new shoes until the 17th after having the first order cancelled due to being out of stock. By then it was raining and near sundown so that ended Saturdays activities.


Sunday, also started off dry, so I tackled the Chevy. On Wednesday the Chevy failed me by losing power on the freeway. Unable to make it the additional 50 miles home, I left it at my Folks in Seattle at 10:30PM and borrowed my Mom's Ranger. Bought a fuel filter Thurdsay, changed it out (it's a special Standyne filter unique to mid-80s Chevy Diesels, so I was surprised the West Seattle Carquest had one on the shelf) and problem solved. The truck has had an alternator problem since the day I bought it- the #2 Alternator light only glows dimly and no charge, I could sometimes make it work by jamming a screwdriver next to the connector. Figured it's probably the voltage regulator, so bough one. Disassembled the alternator, the VR (internal) was cracked in half. Put the new one in, reassembled, charges perfectly now. Lastly, the truck has been developing a nasty death wobble when braking heavily from over 40MPH. I'd already bought a new steering stabilizer so installed that just as I heard the rumbles of possible thunderstorms, and called it a day. Don't know if that solved it yet, I really hope it's not the kingpins.

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Do you by chance have pics of your alternator set up man? My alternator is retarded. I install the belt and it hits the alt idler arm. The next smaller belt is toooo tight! There is seriously 1 inch of fan belt adjustment and I need some help.

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I did something like that and its toooo tight. The one size bigger is to big.





huh, i wonder how my belts are, and if the alt is actually solid:blink: ... im sorry to hear all that happened, but hopefully with this info it will keep other people out of the same situation

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Problem is they break in the winter.





I have the same problem. I don't think I have ever had a major problem in the summer always when its cold. Seems like the knuckles bust easier in the cold too. I feel your pain sad.gifangry.gif

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Well, you're supposed to disconnect the battery. Popping the neg cable off only takes a few seconds.


Since I'm running a stock ext-regged 35A alt I don't have belt issues. For "tight" belt clearances one rule is put the belt on the largest pulley last. Problem is, that's the crank pulley. So I usually slip the water pump one on last.



On the latest "Falling apart" issue, the muffler fell off my '74 on I-5 in Midway on Monday. I heard scraping, and the cars behind me suddenly got out of my lane (which was the right hand lane anyway). Pulled off at Kent-Des Moines, the muffler was still present, but was turned 90 degrees sideways and the exit pipe was wedged between the leaf springs and the parking brake cable. The hanger was just hanging on, and when I pushed the muffler off the spring pack the hanger gave out too.


Then still had to drive the remaining way into work. But on 405, the State Patrol was doing emphasis patrols of the carpool lane. There was no way I could make the truck quiet- an L20B with a 38 DGAS and essentially an open pipe is REALLY loud. I was going to pass one right at the Maple Valley Hwy interchange, so I exited and took side streets into Bellevue. No choice but to find a muffler shop, and ended up walking the last mile and a half to work after dropping the truck off (and the guys in the bay, when I drove up, were joking about the truck... "Dude, that's a Datsun"). Well, it's quiet(er) now, and now I can hear every other noise the dang thing makes.

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