4th Mar 2016, 14:11
Update on the car:
Well it has made it to 350000km, but how quickly things are starting to decay.
The front cross beam underneath the radiator (where the plastic lip is attached) has decided to totally rot off and I dragged it to work on the highway unknowingly. It later came off with a few twists of the hand. The radiator is now sitting on the center mount and is held up by ties at the top.
A couple of thousand km ago, the junk yard tension pulley I put on decided to crack the casting on one bolt, rattled loose one bolt and snapped the last. It fell off on the road geez! I collected the thing, fixed it and put it back. Has worked for 2000 km or so.
It has started to leak coolant from the pump a little more than usual and oil from the valve cover gasket.
Third gear is starting to grind a bit; not sure if it's because of how sloppy the linkages have gotten or if the syncros are getting too old (still on the original clutch though! LOL).
I had another random piece about the size of a fist fall off from the front area; not sure what it was as it was left on the road.
The left front shock started squeaking like a cheap motel bed.
The windshield took a hit from a salter truck, and it's now got a crack.
The oil hasn't been changed in about 30000km now; actually I should check to see if it still has any or if it's being lubricated by magic pixie juice.
At the beginning of winter the thermostat broke, so I had to rip the guts out and leave it open, using cardboard to block the wind from getting into the rad. But I have a feeling that this weekend it will be time to pull the cardboard out from in front of the radiator and see how long it will go. But as the temperature rises this month, the writing is on the wall for the car as it starts to overheat in traffic when the outside temperature hits about 15C. I don't know how much time the car has left in it, but I'm at the end; maybe April is a good time to give up.
By far this car has been the best value for low frills driving.
I paid for it about $14000 with tax about 16.5 years ago and I spent another maybe $3500 on parts over that time (including consumable things like brakes, oil changes, tires and I did all the work myself) so that's about $90/ month or $0.05 per km over that period of time. Not bad considering what a new lease payment is worth for the cheapest budget cars.
4th Mar 2016, 20:33
At this point, the only thing you should put on this car is one of those bumper stickers that says "Honk if parts fall off"!