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New to me 81 with some issues

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Old 04-20-2017, 10:05 PM   #21
terry82
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screw the point into can .then back it off.
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Old 04-21-2017, 08:05 AM   #22
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So, right before I left for work this morning, I went out and tried to adjust the steering lash again. This time I really loosened the locking nut. With a little effort I was able to get the adjustment screw to turn. I turned it a 1/4 of a turn and drove in to work.

It is really improved over what it was, but not quite there. Tonight after the engine cools down a bit, I am going to give it another 1/4 turn. I think that should do it.

My wire brush is missing from my toolbox, most likely courtesy of my 13 year old son who gets into my tools even when I tell him not to. So, the temperature sender will have to wait until I find it or get a new one.

I tried out the cruise control this morning and it does not work. Not a huge problem. But something to be addressed in the future. I tried to find the coupling for the cruise/speedometer, looking for a unit like I had in my '80 Firebird, and didn't see anything. But this weekend I'll get a change to delve in there deeper and maybe get the speedo cable lubed up with some graphite.
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Old 04-21-2017, 08:17 AM   #23
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......
St. Louis car.
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Old 04-21-2017, 10:40 AM   #24
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So, right before I left for work this morning, I went out and tried to adjust the steering lash again. This time I really loosened the locking nut. With a little effort I was able to get the adjustment screw to turn. I turned it a 1/4 of a turn and drove in to work.

It is really improved over what it was, but not quite there. Tonight after the engine cools down a bit, I am going to give it another 1/4 turn. I think that should do it.
Be careful. Many guys have jacked up their gears doing that by feel.
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Old 04-21-2017, 10:48 AM   #25
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Yeah, I am kind of debating on whether or not I should turn it any more. I don't really know what's going on inside. I am kind of thinking about another 1/8 of a turn and then just leaving it. I don't want to end up ordering a new unit.
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Old 04-21-2017, 11:35 AM   #26
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I find the 642 trim code to be "Camel Leather" which is what you appear to have now.
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Old 04-21-2017, 01:54 PM   #27
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I find the 642 trim code to be "Camel Leather" which is what you appear to have now.
on closer inspection you are correct.
I thought the 6 was a 7 when i first looked at it
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Old 04-21-2017, 01:54 PM   #28
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Yep. Now that you mention it, that's what I found, too.

http://corvettec3.ca/interior.htm#1981_Options

I think I'm going to get it aligned and check the steering components before I do any more tweaking of the gear adjuster. It's pretty tolerable right now. Not tight, but I can't move it 2 inches or so before the wheels turn anymore. I'll get to dig into it some more this weekend.
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Old 04-21-2017, 02:19 PM   #29
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First World Problem


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Old 04-21-2017, 07:39 PM   #30
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Well, here's today's update:

I put a can and a half (little cans) of 134 in the AC system and now I have cold air. It still blows out of the vents like a mouse farting gently in my direction, but at least it's cold.

I cleaned off the connection on my coolant temperature sender, at still get nothing. It might be the sender or the gauge. I don't know yet.

My windshield washers made me laugh with how pitiful they are, but they do work. I had a hard time finding the washer fluid jug, and finally found it under the driver side fender. Then I thought "how the heck do I fill it?" It was like finding the Arc of the Covenant when I discovered that the fill neck swiveled out.

Finally, the choke... There is power going to the wire, as tested by my little continuity tester. But, no matter what I do, that choke light will not go out. I am most likely going to just lose the choke, keeping it all the way open, or install a manual choke, if need be. This is strictly a warm-weather car for me.

So, how do I make that darn light go out?

Ok, post-finally: the speedometer. I discovered that my cruise control is not working this afternoon, and this evening I found out why. I found the little unit for the cruise control that I was looking for, which is just like the unit in my old 80 Firebird. It turns out one of the speedo cables was cut. I must have a cable going directly from my transmission to the speedometer. That is what I am going to have to lube or replace.

That's it so far!
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Old 04-21-2017, 11:39 PM   #31
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Well, here's today's update:

I put a can and a half (little cans) of 134 in the AC system and now I have cold air. It still blows out of the vents like a mouse farting gently in my direction, but at least it's cold.That's good

I cleaned off the connection on my coolant temperature sender, at still get nothing. It might be the sender or the gauge. I don't know yet.
Ground that sender wire, and see if the gauge moves.

My windshield washers made me laugh with how pitiful they are, but they do work. I had a hard time finding the washer fluid jug, and finally found it under the driver side fender. Then I thought "how the heck do I fill it?" It was like finding the Arc of the Covenant when I discovered that the fill neck swiveled out.It doesn't. That neck should screw to a bracket pop riveted to the fender rail

Finally, the choke... There is power going to the wire, as tested by my little continuity tester. But, no matter what I do, that choke light will not go out. I am most likely going to just lose the choke, keeping it all the way open, or install a manual choke, if need be. This is strictly a warm-weather car for me.I had that issue once. Still tryimng to remember the issue.

So, how do I make that darn light go out?

Ok, post-finally: the speedometer. I discovered that my cruise control is not working this afternoon, and this evening I found out why. I found the little unit for the cruise control that I was looking for, which is just like the unit in my old 80 Firebird. It turns out one of the speedo cables was cut. I must have a cable going directly from my transmission to the speedometer. That is what I am going to have to lube or replace.

That's it so far!
They still remanufacture those. It is probably seized.
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Old 04-22-2017, 02:43 AM   #32
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I cleaned off the connection on my coolant temperature sender, at still get nothing. It might be the sender or the gauge. I don't know yet.

Finally, the choke... There is power going to the wire, as tested by my little continuity tester. But, no matter what I do, that choke light will not go out. I am most likely going to just lose the choke, keeping it all the way open, or install a manual choke, if need be. This is strictly a warm-weather car for me.

So, how do I make that darn light go out?
guage not moving at all tells me it's not powering up, could be gauge or pcb on the gauge cluster (this is know for problems)

I'll need to check into the choke wiring tomorrow. I assume you tested the coil on the choke? If the coil is bad the light will still come on.
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Old 04-22-2017, 01:42 PM   #33
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First World Problem


An RKE system is surprisingly easy to add.
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Old 04-22-2017, 01:53 PM   #34
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Your anemic blower and wipers can very likely be the result of dirty electrical contacts/connectors. Time to find or replace that wire brush In addition to a wire brush, carb/choke cleaner makes a reasonably effective contact cleaner.

Very few of the electrical connections in our cars are water/weather resistant. The chassis grounds are also HIGHLY subject to corrosion. Once you really start cleaning connectors, ground points, etc. expect to clean ALL of them lest you get bizarre electrical system behavior as uncleaned items find new (and incorrect) circuit paths via those you've cleaned.
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Old 04-22-2017, 03:37 PM   #35
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My car is pretty "base" and didn't come with power door locks. Or power driver seat or power mirrors for that matter.

I took it to get it aligned today. The wandering it was doing is now gone. He also showed me the rag gear, because he said the steering was loose. It didn't look bad visually, but boy, it has a whole lot of play in it. I think I'll back off any adjustment I did to the steering box screw to its original position and get a coupler joint ordered. They said everything else underneath looked good, aside from my driver side wheel bearing making noise.

Weird thing is, half a mile from their shop, the choke light goes out and that little annoying buzz sound I was hearing stopped. I guess a couple of things could have finally caused that, but whatever it was, I'll take it!

These annoying things are disappearing one by one.

I love this car!

Wire brush is next. It's only 50 degrees here right now, but is supposed to be in the low 60s tomorrow, so I'll get to do some more work.

Last edited by DVAST8R_88; 04-22-2017 at 03:38 PM. Reason: missing letters / spelling
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Old 04-22-2017, 07:41 PM   #36
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My car is pretty "base" and didn't come with power door locks. Or power driver seat or power mirrors for that matter.
Yea, much more difficult to add RKE to a car without power locks. I was surprised that only power windows--not locks--were standard in '81. Granted I have huge hands but given the pain of using the inside lock mechanisms in '78+ but I'm amazed they weren't standard.


Quote:
Weird thing is, half a mile from their shop, the choke light goes out and that little annoying buzz sound I was hearing stopped. I guess a couple of things could have finally caused that, but whatever it was, I'll take it!
Mysterious electrical occurrences are almost expected.

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These annoying things are disappearing one by one.
Great for now but don't be surprised when others appear.

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I love this car!
THAT'S THE WAY!!!!

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Wire brush is next. It's only 50 degrees here right now, but is supposed to be in the low 60s tomorrow, so I'll get to do some more work.
Again I suggest a wire wheel (for a drill) to use on the body ground points. When you take them apart you may well be surprised that they worked at all! If you're unsure of the body ground locations just ask.
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Old 04-23-2017, 09:46 AM   #37
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Mysterious electrical occurrences are almost expected.
That's for sure. I went to move the car this morning, and the choke light is still off, but the buzzer is at it again.
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Old 04-23-2017, 02:24 PM   #38
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That's for sure. I went to move the car this morning, and the choke light is still off, but the buzzer is at it again.
where does the buzzing come from?
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Old 04-23-2017, 04:08 PM   #39
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That's for sure. I went to move the car this morning, and the choke light is still off, but the buzzer is at it again.
Do you mean a mechanical buzzing sound or an electronic tone? If latter you'll find the module attached to the right side of the fuse box. If the former I have no idea as there is no mechanical buzzer in a stock '81.
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Old 04-23-2017, 06:34 PM   #40
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Well, the buzzer stays on when I first start it. When I get to about 10mph it goes off and stays off until I shut the car off and start it again. It's weird.

I just took it on an almost 300 mile trip today. It runs great. I really need to fix that rag gear though so I don't have to "drive" it as much.

I did notice on low-speed turns that I could hear sounds from the rear end that remind me of when a U-joint is going bad. Is that normal with the half shafts or do I need to look for replacement U-joints?

Thanks.
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