Thursday, March 14, 2013

Engine pulling day!


Let me kill the suspense right up front – the engine is still in the car.




I scheduled ‘engine pulling day’ and put it on my calendar a month or so ago, hoping that if I set a deadline and said it would happen, it would finally happen. So on Saturday morning Dave and I went and rented the engine lift, brought it home, and then he had to go to rehearsal. I puttered around for a bit, and then our friend Scott (Daddy to the other two Eskimos who stay with us occasionally) came over and helped me get a bunch of stuff done to it. We pulled the driveshaft, disconnected the shifter, and pulled out a bunch of AC parts that were going to get in the way, including the carburetor, radiator and tranny cooler. We were definitely getting closer, but by the end of Saturday, we were pooped, and the engine hadn’t budged!

On Sunday Dave helped me, and we got the exhaust on one side disconnected, but the other side was being a bear about it, and wouldn’t budge. I was still sore from the previous day. I forgot how much exercise was involved – getting down on the floor, getting back up, crawling underneath, rolling around, scooting back out, stretching, pushing, pulling, shoving, lifting – I worked on the car for about ten hours, and I was drained by the end of Saturday. Sunday I was beat.



Me, under the car, contemplating an inaccessible bolt…

So we gave up, doused the stubborn bolts with WD-40, and returned the lift without even assembling it. When we returned the lift to the rental place at Parkrose Hardware (a great, locally owned hardware store) we also picked up a few items I needed for finishing up organizing my tools, pegs and socket organizers. I got a new retractable droplight too. So my garage is pretty well outfitted now, and my hand tools are all hung up where I can easily access them, and can easily see if something is not where it belongs. I even seem to have extra room, which I wasn’t expecting considering I’m squeezing everything into a much smaller space than I had before.




Having the tools mounted on the wall right in front of the car is really nice, it’s handy to grab a tool when I need it. The signs and license plates brighten it up a bit.

Today I went out in the garage after work, and looked at that engine, and thought about how defeated I felt giving up on Sunday. Then I saw a hose I thought I could remove. I put on my gloves and went for it. An hour or so later I’d removed several things, bagged and tagged them, and started plotting my next move. That’s when I realized that ‘Engine Pulling Day’ was a mistake. Putting pressure on my project wasn’t what I needed. Projects are supposed to be fun. It’s good that I got busy and finally made some progress, but renting the lift to try and pressure myself into achieving a BIG goal just made me miserable and defeated when I couldn’t do it. Today I was making tiny progress on my car, but most of all I was enjoying myself. I was blowing off a little steam, the gears in my head were turning as I figured out my next move, and that’s the stuff I really enjoy.



We’ll rent the lift again some other time, when things really are all ready to go. Until then I will enjoy chipping away at the project, and sit out in the garage with my pony, dreaming about how great it will feel to drive it down the road, and know I made it happen. That’s the best part of the project, but a project like this isn’t all about the destination, it’s about the journey, and there’s no need to rush it.


1 comment:

heather said...

Yaay, I'm happy to see you are making progress on the car and looking forward to reading more about your adventures! The photos of you wrenching on the car are great as is your organization of the tools in the new garage. Have fun !