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Monday, August 24, 2009

CraigsListers!

We're constantly searching for parts and since we are, we're sure you are too. This isn't a advertisement for Craigslist.com, but I'm sure posts like these will help if your looking and can't find something. Do you have a need for an auto part that is costly or just plain hard to find? Once you've looked at the usual places (salvage yards, auto parts stores or even the dealer), cruise on over to the Craigslist site. The Craigslist site enables someone to post an ad, for free, whether they are selling an item or want to buy (WTB) something. Select your state and city (or nearest city) and click on either the Auto Parts or Cars+Trucks section. In your city or a city near you, there just might be someone selling that part or even the whole car that you're looking for. Usually the cheapest way to find anything around is to just keep looking, if you can wait. There's no guarantee that the item your looking for on any particular day will be listed or even near you, but it's worth a shot. Searching on CraigsList, also encourages person to person interaction. If you have the gift of gab, and can talk a mean deal, you might get what you're looking for at the right price. You might even meet someone who shares the same enthusiam for cars, or who knows the best mechanic in town or where you can get a good deal on tires or other parts. Once you find the item that you're looking for, ask questions, lots of questions: 1. Does it work? 2. How old is it? 3. When was it last used? 4. Any signs of rust? 5. What year/make/model did it come from? 6. Any additional photos? 7. Are all the parts/pieces included? 8. Can I see it and the condition it's in? Once you've determined that it's worth looking into further, always, make safety for yourself priority one: 1. Meet in a public location, if possible. 2. Get a phone number and a description of the vehicle they're driving, so you know what to look for. 3. If at all possible, take someone with you, or at least let someone know where you'll be meeting. 4. Take your cell phone. 5. Don't take more than what you've already agreed upon, since you might find the particular items condition less appreciable. 6. It never hurts to haggle, talk them down, or simply bargain a fair price. Take into consideration the distance your going to get this item, that way you'll have gas money for the return trip home. Don't feel pressured to buy an item just because you've inquired about it or saw it in person. Make sure it's exactly what you need, do your homework. (Trust me, it's all good that you bought twin turbos for an application, but if you discover they're smaller than what you need, your shafted.) If it's not, just let them know it's not going to work for what you need it for and thank them for meeting with you. If you have Mustang parts or a whole car that you're selling or looking for, let us know. We can also post it on this blog for more exposure. Good Luck and be Safe.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

2002 Mustang GT vs Insurance Company

video It started off to be a good day, after all it was Friday! We were on our usual route to school that morning when another car pulled out from a stop sign, directly in our path. Apparently, having my fog lights on wasn't enough to alert the other driver that I was even there. When I think about it, I can still see the hood of my car lift up and move towards me as the cars made contact and see the airbag deploy in front of my daughter and the feel of the seat belt tightening up. I can still hear the incredible impact sounds that cars made as they collided with one another. After making sure everyone was ok for the moment, I inspected my Mustang GT. From what I saw, it wasn't too bad. No fluids leaking, no smoking. I was able to start it and move it out of traffic. Apparently, the insurance agents saw it a different way. I received a phone call to release the car to them. I questioned them. Why? What are you going to do to it? Where will it be taken? Their response? It's a total loss. WHAT?! A bumper, a headlight, a quarter panel, 2 airbags, a hood and some paint, plus labor fees. Totalled? I think not. NO WAY. I knew that the damage that my Mustang sustained was completely repairable. For about a week, I was being pressured by my former insurance company to release the car to them... but I wanted the other driver's insurance company to repair my car, since I was not at fault for this incident. The other driver's insurance company flip-flopped. We ran through some numbers. Cost of repairs. Value of car. Cost of an equivalent car. First they agreed to repair it. Then they totalled it, citing airbags were costly to replace. SO?! It's not like I can make the airbags deploy on command. They deployed for a reason for which I was not to be blamed. I wanted my car repaired. I wanted my car repaired at their expense. Heck, I didn't even get a rental car at any time during which this was taking place. After weeks of being hassled to relenquish the car and being told that storage fees were being racked up, they relented. It took about 3 months and many, many headaches and phone calls. About 3 weeks after the repairs were initiated, we were back. Back in Black...and Red. Do you have any insurance horror stories? Want to share them? Let's swap stories. Email Me. Today.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Rear Axle Wisdom

2000 Ford Mustang GT with Rear Wheel Removed
Our 2000 Mustang GT has been making that washing machine sound, so I thought it would be wise to check the fluid in the rear differential, since it's over the 120,000 mile mark. It's usually good to check the fluid in the rear axle every 20-30K miles, since failure to do so can lead to a very expensive repair, and alot of frustration.
After checking the fluid and deciding that it was time to flush it out and replace it, we got the car on jackstands, removing the two rear tires for better clearance.
2000 Ford Mustang Rear Differential Cover Removed
Removing the rear differential cover wasn't too hard, which then exposed the gears that happen to look like a large meat grinder. (Comforting thought, huh?) Funding doesn't allow for upgrades only maintenance, so the stock gears remain in the car. One day, though, these will be upgraded.
2000 Ford Mustang GT Stock Gears
While the fluid and gunk was draining out into the drip pan below, I set out to clean up the cover with aluminum wool after scraping the old sealant off. Both inside and out, the cover cleaned up nicely...nothing beats a little elbow grease!
2000 Ford Mustang GT Differential Cover Cleaned Up
It was time to seal and bolt it back onto the car. After waiting about 10 minutes for the sealant to cure, store brand 80 W 90 was poured in until the oil seeped out of the filler plug, telling me it was FULL. Overall it took almost 2 qts. of oil, but in the event yours is different, get 3 qts. just to be safe.
2000 Ford Mustang GT Rear Differential with Clean Cover
The tires were put back on and it was time for a test drive down the road.
Total Investment: $28.00 for 3 qts. 80 W 90 Rear Differential Fluid, and $6.00 for Hi Temp. Sealant.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

It's not just a car.

To a rare few, hearing the name "Mustang" is associated with backyard Bar-B-Que's, the American way of life, and more specifically Ford's longest production line of cars. Being one of the few to have been produced for so long, it seems that nowadays you can find one almost anywhere, in varying conditions, with different personas engrained in them. People relatively invest themselves into their autos to gain a level of comfort from either driving long distances, or just cruising on a Saturday night to the local hotspot. Here, you're welcome to post a few pictures of your ride, and write something telling us about it, or yourself, or the premise behind how you came to own one. On occasion we'll highlight a particular ride, depending on what you've done to it, where you've been lately, or any idea that might make a ride stand out from the crowd. We're always looking for a good deal, ideas, innovations and reasonably priced parts. So if you've got something laying around, chances are, someone is looking for it.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

American Icon

An American Icon, the Ford Mustang Emblem, from Steering Wheel
It's an American icon...The Ford Mustang. From its beginnings in the mid 1960's to today, it has not lost its curb appeal. As such, this blog is for all Mustang enthusiasts, that have classics to grocery-getters, works in progress to fully restored, who would like to share their photos and/or stories, information on car shows, swap meets or even parts and repairs.