Well to be a traveling beard you have to do as the name implies, travel. As of late though my mode of transportation has been less than reliable from week to week. While battling problems with the Honda I’ve had to rely heavily upon the Fiat to fill in the gaps. However it has had it’s own problems too. We drove it up to watch the Rally races at the end of February in Salem, Rolla, Steelville area and she drove like a dream the whole way up. We even got pulled over for speeding by the highpo. Speeding in a car with 50 horsepower, it can be done. The second day though while we were winding our way into the back woods it started to cut out and bog down. This is not a good development on a one lane dirt road that curves unexpectedly, crosses rivers and the altitude climbs and drops dramatically while being followed by scores of other cars on their way to the spectator points. Fortunately it held out enough to make it into and out of the first stage of the day, but on our way to the next stage and after having more problems we decided to cut our loses and head home. We didn’t feel like taking the risk of getting stuck in the way of spectators and rally cars alike in the back woods of central Missouri. Good call. About 5-10 minutes outside of Rolla the Fiat rolled to a halt. Nothing we could do could coax her back to life. Dad and I walked a few miles up to a gas station and called home. Between calling and being picked a few hours later up we ran into Henry. Let me tell you Henry is a good guy to run into if your car is on the fritz. He helped tow the car back up to the gas station and even helped us do enough preliminary troubleshooting to get the car running again, albeit roughly. And then even after he left Henry was still on the job checking car manuals and the local parts stores to try and help us out. You couldn’t ask for a better person to cross paths with. The next day we came back up and towed her home. I then spent the next 5 hours working with the distributor, coil and timing to try and resurrect life into this fallen beauty…nothing. Well I can’t say nothing, there was a whole lot of frustration and confusion(and probably swearing) about what was the true root of the issue. A week later with a clear head and a fresh outlook I got everything set back to its proper state and even drove around town without a problem. Then about the time the automatic choke warmed all the way up though(that’s the closest I can figure) the car started behaving poorly again. I limped her back home and later on in the week went to remove the carburetor to order a rebuild kit and while taking it off the intake manifold I noticed a few loose jet screws on the top of the carb. After tightening these back down whoa black betty bam-a-lam and everything is back in working order. Strangly though the exhaust expansion chamber in the meantime has developed quite the embarrassing rattle, bad enough to try running without a muffler for a little while. While sounding super cool it is just a bit too loud for even me to handle so back on it went. At least she’s running though…for now. Then finally today my honda woes are at an end. After replacing basically all the front end suspension components, motor mounts and then having Honda re-replace the axle shafts that a local shop had done already then voila no more violent shaking car.
I don’t know what I’ll do now that I have two fully functional cars again. Hopefully stop dropping cash into a bottomless bucket long enough to get the land that I’ve been looking at purchased and a home build started. I say home, but the term I favor is Harage. That’s a house collapsed and merged together with a garage. Work areas that flow together with and are an unseparated part of the rest the house. In my mind this is a way to merge relaxation space with project space allowing use of the whole house with minimal disruption to flow, maximum use of resources across spaces, a warm shop area to work in, the ability for people that don’t care to get their hands dirty with a project to still come over and hang out in comfort, and enjoy the media benefits in the home while working on a project. It also facilitates a constant reminder and opportunity to work on your current project because it is basically sitting in your front room. 20 acres, a harage and a slew of Fiats to work on. Is there a better dream? Well there probably is, but for now this is the goal ahead of me.