General discussions related to cars and driving
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By ny991
#50998
Figured I'd start a thread about some stupid things we've done. I came up with it after what I did last Friday night.

I had a couple of friends coming over Friday night to work on one's 71 Chevelle he stores in my pole barn. I had some time to kill so I figured I'd wash my A5 that's all dirty. I grabbed the car soap and poured it in the bucket and then washed the whole car.

The guys showed up, and during the evening I looked at the A5's tires and they looked much cleaner than usual. I usually use Blue Coral soap, but I was out and grabbed some Turtle wax soap I had that had been sitting around. I told my buddy Bob about how good the tires looked from the Turtle wax soap and grabbed the bottle to show him the soap. It wasn't soap, it was Windex. I didn't look at the label when I grabbed it, just the color of what was in it. I had just removed the two coats of Carnuba that I had put on two weeks ago. What an idiot!

Oh well, the A5 got some new wax on it the next day.
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By LPMM
#51008
Don’t feel bad, I can top that... A few months ago I decided to readjust my garage door, so I took out some wrenches, screwdrivers and a crowbar. As I finished with one tool, I laid it on the door rib since it looked like a fairly handy “shelf”. A little voice in my head told me I should not do that but I figured I am smart enough to remove the tools when I done. So by the time I finished fiddling with the door, I had a nice collection of tools sitting on that “handy shelf” and I went to open the garage door to see if it stopped hanging. Did I mention that I was too lazy to move the 964 outside and that it was right under all the tools carefully lined up on the door rib? Well all of a sudden, crash bang boom, the tools fell off putting a nice dent on the engine lid and a gauge on the rear fender! Lesson of the day, the garage door rib is not a shelf! :banghead: :surrender:
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By ny991
#51045
LPMM wrote: Thu Jan 14, 2021 1:50 pm Don’t feel bad, I can top that... A few months ago I decided to readjust my garage door, so I took out some wrenches, screwdrivers and a crowbar. As I finished with one tool, I laid it on the door rib since it looked like a fairly handy “shelf”. A little voice in my head told me I should not do that but I figured I am smart enough to remove the tools when I done. So by the time I finished fiddling with the door, I had a nice collection of tools sitting on that “handy shelf” and I went to open the garage door to see if it stopped hanging. Did I mention that I was too lazy to move the 964 outside and that it was right under all the tools carefully lined up on the door rib? Well all of a sudden, crash bang boom, the tools fell off putting a nice dent on the engine lid and a gauge on the rear fender! Lesson of the day, the garage door rib is not a shelf! :banghead: :surrender:
There are some lessons that are learned quickly! And yes, I got off easy in comparison.
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By Cuda911
#51106
ny991 wrote: Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:45 pm
LPMM wrote: Thu Jan 14, 2021 1:50 pm Don’t feel bad, I can top that... A few months ago I decided to readjust my garage door, so I took out some wrenches, screwdrivers and a crowbar. As I finished with one tool, I laid it on the door rib since it looked like a fairly handy “shelf”. A little voice in my head told me I should not do that but I figured I am smart enough to remove the tools when I done. So by the time I finished fiddling with the door, I had a nice collection of tools sitting on that “handy shelf” and I went to open the garage door to see if it stopped hanging. Did I mention that I was too lazy to move the 964 outside and that it was right under all the tools carefully lined up on the door rib? Well all of a sudden, crash bang boom, the tools fell off putting a nice dent on the engine lid and a gauge on the rear fender! Lesson of the day, the garage door rib is not a shelf! :banghead: :surrender:
There are some lessons that are learned quickly! And yes, I got off easy in comparison.
Lesson I learned super quick: never refill the oil without first reinstalling the oil pan plug. 7 quarts onto the ground makes a huge mess.
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By N_Jay
#51116
Cuda911 wrote: Thu Jan 14, 2021 6:26 pm

Lesson I learned super quick: never refill the oil without first reinstalling the oil pan plug. 7 quarts onto the ground makes a huge mess.
Twice.
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By David993S
#52121
Installing a new set of brake pads in the 996, and was in a bit of a hurry. Buttoned it up, take it out for a drive, and hear the most gawd-awful grinding noise when I applied the brakes. Turn around, drive home (gently) using the brakes a little as possible, and look to see what's wrong. I had installed the right rear pads backwards, :banghead: i.e. metal backing against the rotor / caliper piston pushing on the pad material. Fortunately, I hadn't done any damage. I did feel rather stupid, however.
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By Scott at Team Harco
#52394
Oh yeah. I could probably come up with a big list of stupid things I've done. The most memorable and annoying one is from an engine build. It was for one of my rally/RallyCross Talons. I had a bunch of work done to extract more power. Higher compression pistons, balance shaft elimination, etc.

I get it all put back together and installed in the car. All ready for the first start-up.

I turn the key, it cranks over and I hear a tink of metal hitting the driveway.

I failed to final torque the nuts on the conrod cap of one of the pistons! That rod came loose and poked a hole in the block. I had to find another block and start all over again. That engine was good, but it had issues due to mismatching second gen pistons in a first gen engine. I now build engines with durability and longevity in-mind. This has served me well for 20+ years now.
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By DAVfoto
#52400
Not installing the drain plug to my rear diff correctly in my old 01 4runner. I get down the highway and it backed itself out and then I hear the loudest sound coming from that area, sounds like a damn airplane decelerating when I start to slow down. Had to tow it and rebuild the rear diff. And the thing had an ARB locker in it, which also got blown up.
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By Scott at Team Harco
#52414
OK - that reminds me of another one. This was one of my very first engine builds.

I got my freshly built 1.6 Dodge Colt engine installed in the car and decided it would be cool to go and visit me friend at college. We lived in Rochester, MI, my buddy was going to school in Ann Arbor.

I was about half way there and I noticed a big cloud of smoke following me. I was worried I may have snapped pistons rings, or otherwise did something wrong to allow the burning of oil.

I dumped the clutch, shut off the engine and coasted off the highway into the parking lot of a Kmart. Checked the dipstick, only to discover nothing showing. Went inside and bought a few quarts of oil. Proceeded to dump in the first quart. I could hear a strange sound. It was the sound of oil going through the drain hole and onto the parking lot.

Thinking back at what I did, I remembered putting the drain plug in the oil pan and just tightening it finger tight. Clearly it worked loose and fell out. I had to call my father and ask him to bring a plug and a wrench. It was chilly. I couldn't run the engine for heat, so I had to wrap myself in a space blanket. I've always carried one in my kits since that day.

Anyway, my father came to the rescue and I went on to visit my friend. It was great to have a father that understood these things. He was my mentor and gave me the courage to work on cars (and by extension, most anything). I think I'm passing that on to my son.
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By N_Jay
#52436
We did that with a fresh head on my Celica.

Dumped 5 quarts of oil on the main street of the neighborhood.

"New rule" no beer till after everything is double checked!
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By David993S
#52455
Scott at Team Harco wrote: Tue Jan 19, 2021 11:38 am Oh yeah. I could probably come up with a big list of stupid things I've done. The most memorable and annoying one is from an engine build. It was for one of my rally/RallyCross Talons. I had a bunch of work done to extract more power. Higher compression pistons, balance shaft elimination, etc.

I get it all put back together and installed in the car. All ready for the first start-up.

I turn the key, it cranks over and I hear a tink of metal hitting the driveway.

I failed to final torque the nuts on the conrod cap of one of the pistons! That rod came loose and poked a hole in the block. I had to find another block and start all over again. That engine was good, but it had issues due to mismatching second gen pistons in a first gen engine. I now build engines with durability and longevity in-mind. This has served me well for 20+ years now.
That reminds me of an old racers joke/story. Probably based in fact at some point in racing history:

Guy blows his engine. Walks back to the paddock where his crew asks him what happened. He says "I had an electrical problem". "Electrical problem?" says his crew. "Yeah", says the racer. "A connecting rod came through the side of the block and disconnected some wires".
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By Scott at Team Harco
#52458
David993S wrote: Tue Jan 19, 2021 2:09 pm
Scott at Team Harco wrote: Tue Jan 19, 2021 11:38 am Oh yeah. I could probably come up with a big list of stupid things I've done. The most memorable and annoying one is from an engine build. It was for one of my rally/RallyCross Talons. I had a bunch of work done to extract more power. Higher compression pistons, balance shaft elimination, etc.

I get it all put back together and installed in the car. All ready for the first start-up.

I turn the key, it cranks over and I hear a tink of metal hitting the driveway.

I failed to final torque the nuts on the conrod cap of one of the pistons! That rod came loose and poked a hole in the block. I had to find another block and start all over again. That engine was good, but it had issues due to mismatching second gen pistons in a first gen engine. I now build engines with durability and longevity in-mind. This has served me well for 20+ years now.
That reminds me of an old racers joke/story. Probably based in fact at some point in racing history:

Guy blows his engine. Walks back to the paddock where his crew asks him what happened. He says "I had an electrical problem". "Electrical problem?" says his crew. "Yeah", says the racer. "A connecting rod came through the side of the block and disconnected some wires".
That's not uncommon in F1. Honda, in particular, were having reliability issues a few years ago. Frequently the reason given for the DNFs were 'electrical', or some other cause unrelated to the fact that the engine failed.
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By JDS968
#56358
David993S wrote: Mon Jan 18, 2021 11:34 amInstalling a new set of brake pads in the 996, and was in a bit of a hurry. Buttoned it up, take it out for a drive, and hear the most gawd-awful grinding noise when I applied the brakes. Turn around, drive home (gently) using the brakes a little as possible, and look to see what's wrong. I had installed the right rear pads backwards, :banghead: i.e. metal backing against the rotor / caliper piston pushing on the pad material. Fortunately, I hadn't done any damage. I did feel rather stupid, however.
Scott at Team Harco wrote: Tue Jan 19, 2021 11:38 amOh yeah. I could probably come up with a big list of stupid things I've done. The most memorable and annoying one is from an engine build. It was for one of my rally/RallyCross Talons. I had a bunch of work done to extract more power. Higher compression pistons, balance shaft elimination, etc.

I get it all put back together and installed in the car. All ready for the first start-up.

I turn the key, it cranks over and I hear a tink of metal hitting the driveway.

I failed to final torque the nuts on the conrod cap of one of the pistons! That rod came loose and poked a hole in the block. I had to find another block and start all over again. That engine was good, but it had issues due to mismatching second gen pistons in a first gen engine. I now build engines with durability and longevity in-mind. This has served me well for 20+ years now.
Oh boy. These both remind me of something.

One time I did a complete rebuild on the 968 calipers. Was it all four or just the rears? I think it was all four. Can't remember. Anyway, I took them apart, cleaned up the bores and stripped the surfaces and everything, spent a bunch of time repainting them as well as I could (and I SUCK at painting), even redoing the white PORSCHE lettering over the shiny black paint, put new pistons, seals, and boots in, the whole deal. I had the 968 up on the lift at the dealership where I was a tech and I put it all back together after work. I'm kinda in a rush (BAD IDEA) and I have to get somewhere, so I get it all together, get the car off the list, pack up my shit, and go. A couple miles on the street and then onto I-95. Almost immediately I hear the more horrific grinding noise. I pull off the road and sure enough, a rear caliper is loose, hitting the rotor. I threaded all the bolts in by hand, but somehow forgot to torque down the bolts on one caliper. Of course they immediately started backing out and when one of them fell out, the caliper rotated and one end hit the outer edge of the rotor. I got it towed back in, got a new bolt, and got the caliper reattached. Nothing was bent or broken, but the edge of the caliper had a nasty gouge in it and my not-so-perfect new paintjob was already fucked up.

Oh well. It still stopped on a dime and that shiny new paint got ruined by Performance Friction PF97 brake dust immediately anyway. Every time I hit the brakes in the Z06, I miss the 968. I'm thinking about dropping thousands of dollars on an AP Racing Radi-Cal front caliper kit, but I don't know if that'll fix the problem. I think the booster is just designed with WAAAY too much assist, and I'm not sure how to source a booster with less assist that will fit.
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By Crisis
#61508
A few years ago, my son and I were in the driveway, swapping out the winter tires for summers on my wife's minivan. Just as we were finishing up, it started to rain - hard. So we removed the jackstands, lowered the van back down and sprinted inside.

The next day, my wife and daughters drove to Edmonton, about 5 hours away. Just after they'd entered the city, my wife noticed some odd noises and vibration coming from the van. She pulled over, noticed a couple missing lug nuts and a bunch of loose ones. She didn't appreciate my joke about trying to kill her, though the girls kinda thought it was funny. Wife still doesn't find it funny. On the plus side, now I always double check that I've torqued those lug nuts.
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By SeanR
#61513
I've done this twice.

When removing the fan shroud on a later 928 you have to undo the upper oil cooler line and tuck it out of the way. So on each of these times I got done doing the timing belt/water pump jobs, put it all back together and go for starting the engine. Let me tell you, there are 9 quarts of oil in a 928 and when you leave that line to the cooler tucked away and not connected where it's supposed to go, that engine can pump oil out very quickly. And all over the place. It takes two large bags of kitty litter to clean up and a 1/2 case of brake cleaner.

After the 2nd time I put post it note on the drivers side window saying "OIL LINE?"
ny991 liked this
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By Airkuhl
#102790
I rented a car this past weekend while travelling and curbed a rim turning into a parking garage. I've never curbed a rim in my life, just wasn't paying attention that the rental had a lousy turning circle.
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By 911Königin
#104883
Great thread :rockon:
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By amdavid
#104919
I once drained the front diff fluid on a bmw 328ix wagon thinking it was the engine drain plug.....opps. Turns out I didn't get enough fluid back in the differential since I was in a rush.....11k miles later, front diff failed... :banghead:
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By amdavid
#105291
SeanR wrote: Fri Sep 17, 2021 10:35 pm
Chaos wrote: Sat Sep 04, 2021 10:58 pm First Marriage…
Going with this one as the winner.
Second Marriage...(even more of a "I can't believe I did that").
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By ny991
#105419
911Königin wrote: Fri Sep 17, 2021 3:30 pm Great thread :rockon:
I thought it was a great idea too! However, we need more humility in the site! :hiding:

Do you think there may be a couple of alpha’s here?
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By SidViscous
#106912
Putting loctite on knock sensor threads.
Nuff said.

Oh and dropping a truck on my thumbs.
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By Flat6Noise
#106973
Bunch of pikers. When it comes to stupid, I’m that guy. The first SBC that I rebuilt when I was a teenager, I got the pushrod adjustment on the rockers wrong and killed the lifters and cam in short order. And as an added bonus, the fine metal shavings did a number on the bearings surfaces, too.

But that’s nothing compared to my biggest and most expensive fuck-up ever.
I said “I do.” once! And as an added bonus, I got to pay for over 200 people to eat, get drunk at the open bar, and live music. Still a lot cheaper than the divorce though. Yup, dummerererer then durt.
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By fpena944
#106977
Another rental car story...

Used to work in DC quite often about a decade ago. I would rent a car because I'd fly into BWI (client required that to keep costs down) so it would make sense to rent a car instead of paying for a cab.

Anyway one of my developers was a huge pain in the a$$ when it came to eating out. I would just walk places but he wanted to drive everywhere. So I agreed to drive but wasn't happy about it because finding parking is a hassle and I'm not that familiar with the dimensions of this rental.

I think it was either a Nissan or Hyundai, I don't remember but a four door sedan. We get to the underground garage for the restaurant and it is incredibly tight there but I had to back into a space. Well I misjudged and scraped the rear passenger door along one of the concrete support beams.

I call my boss and ask what to do. His answer is, "I don't know, never wrecked a rental before" - yeah thanks lots of help there. We eat and I drop him off at our hotel then I head to 24 hour Wal-Mart in Maryland to look for a solution. Found some rubbing compound and found one of those self-service car washes. Spent about an hour in there at 11pm at night working on buffing out the scrape and making it look like the rest of the car.

Next day I go to turn it in and the guy does his walk-around. Thankfully it had snowed a bit so the roads were a mess and the car was also pretty dirty. He stops at the area where the damage took place, did a quick inspection and then tells me to have a nice day.

So either I did a great repair or he let me slide. Either way I didn't see any additional charges on my corporate card but yeah, can't believe I ran into a stationary object!!!
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By SidViscous
#106984
fpena944 wrote: Wed Sep 29, 2021 5:02 pm Another rental car story...

Used to work in DC quite often about a decade ago. I would rent a car because I'd fly into BWI (client required that to keep costs down) so it would make sense to rent a car instead of paying for a cab.

Anyway one of my developers was a huge pain in the a$$ when it came to eating out. I would just walk places but he wanted to drive everywhere. So I agreed to drive but wasn't happy about it because finding parking is a hassle and I'm not that familiar with the dimensions of this rental.

I think it was either a Nissan or Hyundai, I don't remember but a four door sedan. We get to the underground garage for the restaurant and it is incredibly tight there but I had to back into a space. Well I misjudged and scraped the rear passenger door along one of the concrete support beams.

I call my boss and ask what to do. His answer is, "I don't know, never wrecked a rental before" - yeah thanks lots of help there. We eat and I drop him off at our hotel then I head to 24 hour Wal-Mart in Maryland to look for a solution. Found some rubbing compound and found one of those self-service car washes. Spent about an hour in there at 11pm at night working on buffing out the scrape and making it look like the rest of the car.

Next day I go to turn it in and the guy does his walk-around. Thankfully it had snowed a bit so the roads were a mess and the car was also pretty dirty. He stops at the area where the damage took place, did a quick inspection and then tells me to have a nice day.

So either I did a great repair or he let me slide. Either way I didn't see any additional charges on my corporate card but yeah, can't believe I ran into a stationary object!!!
Had a rental in New Braunfels TX. Parked next to a prickly bush that did a number on one side.

Was headed over to Houston to see TR anyways. Borrowed his buffer and compaund. It did an OK job.

Went to return it. They didn't even look.

<shrug>
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By Crisis
#110027
Reading the rental car stories twigged a memory for me that I hadn't though about in years. In the fall of 2004 (easy to remember because it was the year the Red Sox came back from being down 3-0 to the Yankees), we took a family vacation to Florida. Spent a week in the Orlando area and week at Sebring, where I have family.

When we were picking up our rental minivan (4 kids with us), there was a massive lineup at the rental car place and most people were pretty cranky. Once of those cranky people was the guy in line immediately in front of me. I forget all of the particulars , but the guy was being a complete jerk to the young man behind the counter. He was generally very demanding and bitching because he was with the NYFD and therefore a hero deserving a lower rental rate and an upgrade among other things (remember that 9/11 was still pretty fresh back then). I think the rental car employee saw me rolling my eyes as I listened to the loudmouth in front of me and we shared a chuckle about it when it was my turn at the counter. We had to wait a bit for our van, but there was nothing he could do about it, so we just made the best of it, did a condition check when it showed up, then loaded up when our rental van was available and hit the road to our rental condo. He seemed to appreciate that I was pretty chill compared to most of the throng of pissed off people.

During the second week of our trip, I noticed a fairly large dent in the driver's door of the van when returning to it in a parking lot one day. Obviously, someone had hit the van and drove off with no note, or anything. Even though my own insurance would have covered it, I didn't look forward to jumping through all the hoops when I returned the minivan to the rental agency. As luck would have it, I got the same guy when I returned the van and I immediately told him about the dent in the door. he grabbed his copy of the original condition report, put a circle on the driver's door, noted "dent" and told me "that was already there" and I was good to go. Sometimes karma works out for you.

We also had an "I can't believe I did that" part, during the same trip. We used Sebring as a base for our travels and typically had pretty full days and were bagged when we got home each evening. The place were were staying at was right next to a Walgreen's with just an alley separating us from their parking lot. One morning, we're about to load up for that day's adventure and walk out to find the tach of the van wide open, facing the Walgreen's parking lot. It had been left wide open all night, as we failed to close it after returning home the evening before. Most amazingly, nothing what was missing from the van.

Sean, I know…. It’s a tough call.

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