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Sherlock Ohms

Just Because It's Old Doesn't Mean It's the Problem

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patb2009
User Rank
Gold
if your kid wanted a crappy VW
patb2009   8/15/2015 9:33:30 PM
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why didn't he get a 2nd generation VW Bug. Then he could get something new and crappy.

 

kasone
User Rank
Iron
Re: if your kid wanted a crappy VW
kasone   8/18/2015 7:54:08 AM
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Congratulations on your new VW. I had a 1970 and it is one of my favorite cars ever. I enjoyed driving it very much and have lots of good memories about it. The engineering behind it was very good.

As for the problem you experienced, I always ask what was the sequence of events that lead to the problem. It can shorten the diagnostic time considerably and save time and money that is wasted trying different fixes.

Jim_E
User Rank
Platinum
Ah, melted wires on the headers
Jim_E   8/18/2015 8:54:03 AM
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I think having melted wires on the headers is a right of passage for anyone who modifies vehicles!  I too have experienced melted wires on the headers, but with the motor and firewall located in front of the driver.  I clearly recall melted starter wires, as well as numerous spark plug wires that died a painful death on the header pipes.

 

cramg
User Rank
Iron
Great story
cramg   8/18/2015 1:38:33 PM
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Whether your son appreciates it or not, this is an excellent series of lessons in hands on troubleshooting and how easy it is to make erroneous assumptions.  An old VW is a great introduction to keeping cars running - they have come a long way since 1969, but the basic principles are mostly the same, and at least this car isn't too overwhelming.  Congratulations on buying a classic.

William K.
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Ah, melted wires on the headers
William K.   8/19/2015 12:44:34 AM
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Very early in my automotive education I was taught about wire routing and the need to avoid both hot areas and pinch points. I learned even more about them fixing other people's problems. A lot of folks have no clue about the amount of heat in an engine's exhaust.

SKROGGER
User Rank
Silver
Troubleshooting the problem
SKROGGER   8/27/2015 7:58:23 AM
I'd like to share a fantastic trick of the trade for just such a problem.  This relates to manners such as the VW losing power under acceleration or load.  Occassionally a problem such as this only happens while driving under certain conditions and can be difficult to find while sitting in your shop.  Have a friend sit in the vehicle with the brakes applied, have them put it in gear and start to load up the engine.  Have a spray bottle of water and start to spray water on various components in the engine bay.  For instance, a spark plug wire that looks perfectly fine but has a breach in the insulation will rear its ugly head when the water spray hits it and creates an easier path to ground.  This method will almost always find the intermittent short of an electrical wire. 

Thank you to all the old mechanics who have shared things that are not in the troubleshooting and repair guides.

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Sherlock Ohms highlights stories told by engineers who have used their deductive reasoning and technical prowess to troubleshoot and solve the most perplexing engineering mysteries.
Sherlock Ohms highlights stories told by engineers who have used their deductive reasoning and technical prowess to troubleshoot and solve the most perplexing engineering mysteries.
Sherlock Ohms highlights stories told by engineers who have used their deductive reasoning and technical prowess to troubleshoot and solve the most perplexing engineering mysteries.
Sherlock Ohms highlights stories told by engineers who have used their deductive reasoning and technical prowess to troubleshoot and solve the most perplexing engineering mysteries.
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