Welcome to Retroman40's World!

Vehicle Projects

It should be no secret to anyone that I love cars.  I look at each of my vehicles as a "project".  You can check them out using the navigation buttons above.  Before you laugh at me about how seriously I take my vehicle "projects", it never ceases to amaze me that people will spend 20 to 50 thousand bucks (or more, sometimes WAY more)  on something and basically ignore it.  Other than your home, vehicles are your biggest outlay.  Notice I didn't say investment.  Cars are not investments; they are depreciating assets.  Fortunately you have a fair amount of control over how quickly they depreciate.  My basic philosophy is to drive it until it dies, is unsafe or just doesn't work for you anymore.  Check out my thoughts on that subject here.

Here is a quick summary of my "projects":

Project RS92 was my (perhaps misguided) effort to revive a 1992 Camaro RS and turn it into a decent, reliable vehicle that's fun to drive.  The goal was not to spend too much money. I have abandoned the project when it became evident that it was on the verge of becoming a huge money pit.  The vehicle developed a bit of a smoking problem.  I took the cylinder heads off and replaced the valve seals.  That fixed that but the transmission was failing and there were some other issues.  Needless to say it was time to pull the plug.  I did have a lot of fun with the car over the years.  I have left my thoughts up on my site just in case anyone else is interested in what I learned.  Of course, I haven't ruled out another go at this down the road.

Project 300K was my effort to squeeze 300,000 miles out of my 2004 Subaru Forester.  Sadly the vehicle developed some issues and was no longer reliable enough to drive any distance.  We purchased a new 2016 Chevrolet Traverse in December 2015 and got rid of the Subaru.  Just like with the Camaro, I have left the entire Project 300K site up here for historical purposes.

Project C3500 is about our 2004 Chevy Silverado C3500 Crew Cab Dually with a Duramax Diesel Engine.  As of June 28, 2017 is has just over 121,690 miles on the odometer and I don't even want to think about getting rid of this vehicle.  Most people are surprised that it is almost 14 years old as it looks and runs like it is brand new. Unless something goes really wrong I want to keep this truck forever.  If I don't get at least 250,000 out of this vehicle I will be disappointed to say the least.

Project Horsepower was about my side efforts working on engines, transmissions, carburetors or just about anything else that goes into making a car run..  I had a fairly complete engine building operation in my garage including a nice engine test stand.  I found that tinkering with engines to be a wonderful way to relax. I'll take an engine apart just to put it back together again!  You never know when a spare engine may come in handy either!  Before moving to Florida I somewhat lost interest in this activity.  Prior to moving we donated most of our equipment to the Shelby County Technical Center in Shelbyville, KY.  The hope is that it just might inspire some kid to stay in school.

Before going any further I need to add a little bit of a disclaimer here.  This is my hobby.  I am not a professional mechanic.  I am not ASE Certified or whatever.  I'm a guy who likes to work on cars and turn some wrenches.  It's how I relax.  Let's get something straight - I do not begrudge anyone who has no interest in working on any vehicle.  I thoroughly enjoy getting my hands dirty and working on my vehicles.  Please keep in mind that all my content is based on my own experiences working on my specific vehicles and engines.  In no way should anyone undertake any kind of vehicle project if they aren't confident in their abilities to finish the job - correctly and that means safely.  There are things on my vehicles that I won't even try because I lack either the knowledge or more likely the (expensive) special equipment that is required to do the job the right way. Only you know your abilities and limitations.  If you aren't sure about something, either get educated about it or forget it.

I will recommend a tool that I have found invaluable on all my vehicles - AllDataDIY.com.  This is a subscription service that is run by Auto Zone.  The first vehicle will set you back 44.95 for a 5 year subscription.  Additional vehicles are just 29.95 for a 5 full years.  What that means for me is for just over 100 bucks I have access to the same tool that the pros use.  The instructions and diagrams are excellent.  You can print the diagrams/instructions as necessary.  I highly recommend anyone who wants to work on their own car check this out.
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