How many of you guys and gals are DIYers?And what was your worst whoops moment?-Kevin
Letting a friend get me ‘intoxicated’ BEFORE replacing his thermostat, then not checking my ratchet wrench and cranking the housing bolt the wrong way. A ‘youthful indiscretion’.
Drilling a hole for a new seat on my harley and going to far, put a hole in new tire.
Working on dashboard wiring without disconnecting the battery.
This was a 196?? Sunbeam Minx sedan. Shorted something to ground. Sparks flew, wiring melted, there was a small fire. Most of the wiring harness had to be replaced. Even after that the car was never right.
Changing the spark plugs on my 2-yr old 1969 Porsche 912. In the driveway, on a hot June day. Cleverly used a straight socket with my ratchet wrench to remove the old plug, rather than the long T-handle wrench, with the rubber-padded socket, that came with the car. Loosened up OK, but when I tried to withdraw it from the air shrouding, the plug dropped out of the socket. Inside the shroud. It took me about two hours of poking around with screwdrivers to somehow get the plug out. Not only did I learn why they provided the special wrench (DOH – to grasp the plug!), but I got a nice sunburn, too.
Or (as I’ve mentioned before) maybe it was the time I found a loose 1/4" hose in the Porsche’s luggage compartment, and realized that it was the reason the windshield squirter was not working. OK, just hook that sucker up to the squirter pump, and away we go! Hmmm. Still not squirting. Well, keep trying; maybe it has to fill the pipes. I think it was when the car started running like it had water in the gas that I realized that the loose hose was some kind of vent for the gas tank. Later I found the real hose for the squirter.
Or maybe it was the time…
And those are just the automotive stories. The ham radio and electronics stories are off topic, but it’s a wonder that I’m alive.
Back when I was seventeen, I had a 65 Ford that had an oil leak. The Ole Man came over and looked and said the oil pressure sending unit was leaking. I couldn’t see it that well so I took a socket and ratchet and removed it. Sure enough, it was cracked. I go in the house with sender in hand and call the parts store to see if they had one. They do! So I get in the car with sender in hand and fire up the engine. You have any idea how long it takes to pump the oil out of an engine without the sender unit installed? So now do I not only need the sender unit, but another five quarts of oil. And the Ole Man wasn’t very happy with me dumping all that oil on the driveway.
Once I did an oil change. Drained the old oil, replaced the filter, refilled the engine with oil. Forgot to put the drain plug back in.
I think it was when I was changing the spark plugs and plug wires on my 1985 Buick Skyhawk. I hooked up the wires in the wrong order.
They are welcome if they involve,definite ,know I am right tinkering(tinkeritis)-Kevin
Had the fire flying myself a time or two,please tell me what a Sunbeam Minx auto is,sounds interesting-Kevin
Been there, done that. So embarrassed, I only did it the one time.
I always “bone up” before doing a job and make sure I’m prepared ahead, so I really haven’T had any “whoops” moments.
Except that time I went to put new front pads on my daughter’s pickup. I put the truck on jackstands, removed the lugnuts, and was cramped over and in so much pain I had to ask my neighbor to put the wheels back on and lower the truck. I ended up in the hospital getting an epidural cortisone injection. It was at that moment that I realized I could no longer do much of my own work.
This subject’s sub-heading could very well be
"…just one more 1/4 turn "
That being said, apply it to installing a power window motor, rear gate, 1980 Bronco, then re-installing the glass…
Broke off a spark plug with my brand new ratchet set…but that was just sad. The stupidest thing was letting my then-boyfriend try to release the frozen wiper blades with ether spray THEN a lighter. At least the wiper blades came off – when I had to replace the spidered windshield.
Airplane. Manny, pull that handle so I can get the escape spoiler to come down. It doesn’t work that way so I remembered how to do it when the crew entry door hit the floor. I can order parts very well.
Everyone has them and I’ve had a couple, or more, to speak of.
At home one weekend while trying to hurry up and swap a starter on an old Chevy 327 before it got dark I forgot to unhook the battery.
Applied a box end wrench to nut that holds the positive cable to the solenoid, turned the wrench a bit which then made contact with the frame rail, and the wrench proceeded to weld itself to the frame while glowing red.
Burned the crap out of my hand and it took some furious battery cable yanking before it came loose from the battery.
Wiped out one good Snap-On wrench.
A friend of mine asked me to come over one Sunday afternoon and take a look at his just completed '63 Impala SS. Red on red, 327, and a stunning car to look at.
The engine was just redone and he was getting ready to fire it up. While chatting with him as he added oil all of a sudden I felt my feet getting wet and a quick look underneath showed the drain plug was not in the pan.
At least this was caught before the engine was started. Didn’t make much difference in the long, or short, term though. He had sent the engine off for a performance build and someone forgot a wrist pin keeper so within 50 miles it was trashed.
OK I will own up to my own windshield problem (so many others but this is good) I was testing the sensitivity of a alarm shock sensor and slapped the windshiels on the outside along the “A” pillar. Well as you can probably guess the windshield expolded in a line of cracks (it looked like I had hit it with a baseball bat). I found out what the Dealer paid (really I paid) for a windshield for a 98 Tahoe,$321.00,they took it out of two checks,nice of them to spread it out. They sent me for a drug test,I wonder what they suspected? I was clean.
I did that on my mom and dads 73 Volvo in high school auto shop. The backfire blew a hole in the muffler.
I was about 14 at that time, working in my family’s service garage. My uncle’s late 50’s Lincoln Continental needed an oil change. I’ll do it. Put it up on the lift, saw a drain plug, drained the oil, lowered the car, put in fresh oil, car would not back out of the garage. Turns out, this was one of the early automatics with an oil pan and drain plug identical to the crankcase. Now I had an empty tranny and an overfilled crankcase. I still hear about that boner.
One time when rebuilding a 4-cylinder Jeep engine, I miscalculated where to set the bit on the cylinder boring machine. I accidentally cut a diameter about 1/8 inch larger than it was supposed to be, and to a depth about 1/8th inch down into the cylinder.
Since the “over cut” depth into the cylinder was above the piston rings, I decided it shouldn’t cause any problems. So I finished rebuilding the engine and sent the car out the door.
The car came back within a month with a blown head gasket. It blew where I had made the overcut in the cylinder. I had to put a sleeve in the cylinder to fix it correctly.