At least one of the pair of my perpetual projects is nearing completion, but that’s mostly because we’ve run out of things to fix on my 1982 DeLorean DMC-12. My mechanic, the car Wizard was probably playing favorites as well, since he’s been obsessed with the DeLorean ever since it arrived — and he shares my prickliness for BMW products. My 2007 BMW M5 has shown some progress since my last update, though, but another one of my fleet has gotten in the way, and it’s required a lot of creativity to fix.
The latest victim of a broken car curse that a gypsy must have put on me when I was a child is my 1998 Aston Martin DB7. I let the Car Wizard take it back to his lair after my wedding, since the climate control fan was making the most annoying sound in the world when I turned it on. This made the car pretty much unbearable to drive in the winter, since I need heat and defrost — and since the AC compressor was leaking as well, I would have more reason to not drive it come spring. Additionally, the gear selector would bounce and pulse in a very inappropriate manner, which seemed to indicate something was very wrong with the transmission mount.
Turns out, I was right, the mount was the problem, but when I ordered a replacement, it looked entirely different from the one that was in the car. I had never seen a motor mount like this one on a car built after 1970, with a series of coil springs acting mounted in two metal cylinders, stacked atop one another like cereal bowls in the cupboard. Most likely, this part is shared with some obscure British vehicle that I may discover later and be able to source the part, but for now, the Wizard was able to wizard away the vast majority of the bouncing by putting in a big rubber spacer inside that looks like an oversized hockey puck. This spacer compresses the springs more, making it more difficult for the transmission to bounce around.
The car wizard did some more wizarding on my blower motor, re-securing the plastic "hamster wheel" connected to the blower motor that fans air into the cabin with part of a plastic drinking straw and some epoxy glue. He was also able to match up the part number on my AC compressor to an old Jaguar, which saved me several hundred dollars over buying the identical Aston Martin-branded item.
So I’ll be getting my Aston back soon — along with my DeLorean, it seems, as all the work is nearly completed. The source of my stalling engine came from a "redneck-engineered" fuel pump system that couldn’t suck fuel when the tank was low, so it was sloshing about during acceleration. The replacement transmission is working perfectly, and new door struts have made my gullwing doors pop up so eagerly that if you stand too close, it might give you a knock-out uppercut punch.
With new tires and fully functional brakes, I was able to take my DeLorean around the block for the first time without fearing I would die, but there’s still a bit more fixing to do, including the horrible exhaust. Still, it’s nice to see some light at the end of the tunnel — and I’m very, very thankful to have the Car Wizard in my life. His amazing skill and beard of knowledge never ceases to amaze me.