How a "shoe lace" saved our @#$

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That would be a pretty reasonable definition :)
(But it kinda leaves my daily-driver in limbo. At least until the next rape at the gas pump.)
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Jack wrote:

A beater is a car that won't start unless you know "the trick".
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Hmmm... by that definition, I guess my ol' Mazda CAN'T be a beater after all... The "trick" for starting it is mash the clutch and/or put it in neutral (to keep it from leaving unexpectedly) then turn the key. No need to pump the gas (not even once), no need to fiddle with anything - the "magic" just happens. :) If the battery isn't dead, it generally takes less than a second of crank before it fires up, even after sitting overnight (or multiple overnights).
If the battery is dead enough that it won't crank, but isn't *COMPLETELY* flat, getting it rolling backwards at about 2-3 MPH then popping the clutch with it in reverse will usually get it to fire up on the first or second try, with the rarely required third attempt never yet failing to result in a running engine.
<POUT> And here I thought I'd finally achieved the pinnacle of success by owning a "beater"... Just goes to prove that you can't win the rat-race - They just keep coming up with faster rats! :)
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I thought the definition of a beater, is that it's a car you can't let someone else borrow unless you run down the list of "oh, by the way..."? Or, that you just plain can't let anyone else drive?
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I just tell them "good luck".
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for me a beater is a car 9truck. mocycle, vehicle) that is in a condition where yo ujust don't care what happens to it. You know the one.
uses for beaters: Its snowing, and they've closed all the local highways, so you decide its time to go "snowplowing" - sliding into the snowdrifts and snowbanks on the highway to see if you can make it through the other side......
checking to see if those guard rails really do make any difference if you drift into them.
bumper tag
random "I wonder what would happen if" tests I think the best was when some guy at a local dock bet me $500 i wouldn't drive my "dune buggy" (old VW floow and mechanicals I talked out of a local junk yard I hung out at) off the end of the pier. Got a nice by stander to hold the cash, cost me $75 to get a local fisherman to winch it back up. SPent a couple hours blowing out hte motor, and drove it away later that day....
In my younger days, I've done all of the above.......
Name changes to protect the well.... OK, so not innocent, but certainly wiser (or at least older and easier to break) now....
wrote:

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Ain't that the truth!! My beater van has a trick as well as requiring water every thirty miles.
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On Fri, 7 Oct 2005 19:07:23 -0600, "kr_gentner"

That sounds like a Ford. I have a '70 Bronco and a 68 F-250 Camper Special. "Herding" is an apt description. We bought the Bronco new and it steered like that from the start. My dad bought a 68 Camper Special new and I recall it (or him :-) also being all over the road.
Ya get sorta used to it after awhile even though you look like yer sawing a log going down the road :-)
I will have to say that the F-250 is tough as a rock. I've had it so loaded down with river rock that the axle was smashing the bump stops and the front wheels touched down only occasionally. It still drove more or less normally and suffered no damage. I've also had the bed packed as tightly as possible with compressed gas cylinders. Probably at least as heavy as the rock. Used that old truck on a welding supply route for years. It was like using a stone axe to carve a statue but at least it always worked.
John
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wrote:

Actually that one was an International. I never could hit third gear in the thing so I'd wind it up about as tight as it would go in second and pop it over into 4th. You were lucky to keep the thing between the ditches.
Kathy
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Bill, 10/6/2005,10:43:55 PM, wrote:

Sounds like a Ford!!! Falls apart with no warning and held together with shoelaces.
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Perhaps all the rattling and slop in the front end before it came apart should have been a hint as to what was coming.
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Hope that was a factory shoelace! Otherwise it might void the warranty.
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wrote:

Heh! whatever it takes. I've gotten out of the woods on my dirt bike after breaking a chain and using all my masterlinks by cutting the clutch cable and wiring the chain back together with the high strength wire.
Two things that go in the emergency kit are duct tape and mechanic's wire. This is soft iron wire that is strong but easy to bend. I've made everything from a fanbelt to an alternator bracket to suspension parts with the stuff. Fashion the wire in the shape you want and use the duct tape to hold it in place if necessary.
You might also consider carrying an improvised welder in your kit if you're out in the woods like that. All you need is some gas welding filler rod, a long set of jumper cables and a carbon rod that you get from the welding supply place. You use your car battery as the power source. 12 volts isn't enough to keep a stick welding arc going but it will run a carbon arc. You use the carbon arc just like an acetylene torch or TIG and use the filler rod to fill the joint.
That and a few random pieces of metal stock and you can fix almost anything. In your situation (BTDT), I'd have taken a hunk of angle and welded a bracket to the control arm to hold the ball in place. Strong enough to get you out but easy to remove for the permanent fix.
If you carry a second battery, for in case you run the other one down after flooding or drowning the engine, you can hook the two in series for welding and use ordinary AC or DC sticks. Lots of the guys I off-road with do that. They carry the long jumpers and a third jumper suitable for running from the spare battery to the cranking battery.
John
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What, you weren't carrying a roll of baling wire in the bed toolbox? Kids these days :-)
Nice kludge :->
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I'm wondering that if you drove it backwards and steered with the one good wheel, if the wheel with the broken tie rod would caster itself into place...
but on a rocky dirt road, who knows?
Mark
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Idunno about "a roll" worth, but I habitually tote at least a couple bales' worth of baling wire in the trunk, and have for years. So far, I've used it to retrieve 7 sets of keys locked in other people's vehicles, re-attached the heat-shield on the catalytic converter, put the muffler back on, re-attached the tailpipe to the rubber mounting doohickey after the rivet that originally held it on fell out, and with the aid of two feed bags and some careful positioning, jump-started a log skidder. And who knows what other stuff I've used it for and simply forgotten about over the years...
(But then, in all fairness, I hardly count as a "kid" anymore...)
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wrote:

Reminds me of when I broke my gas pedal cable. I just thought for a moment and hauled out my tackle box and used the string tackle to allow me to manipulate the swing arm so I could accelerate.
Later at the shop, I paid $15.45 for the cable..Made me almost think about just getting another string :)
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Very Resourceful. Glad you got out of th situation. We used to carry bailing wire in the Model T. Used it a few times never thought of using shoe laces.
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