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Thread: The Colon aka Lady Starstruck --> 1988 Colony Park by bnw

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    Default The Colon aka Lady Starstruck --> 1988 Colony Park by bnw

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    Basic information on the car:

    Make: Mercury
    Model: Grand Marquis LS Colony Park
    Model year: 1988
    Manufacture year: 1987
    Most recent entry: 15 Nov 2020
    Mileage at the moment: 51 867 (627 miles driven so
    Maintenance costs:
    More costs, I mean, fuel:
    spritmonitor.de link: https://www.spritmonitor.de/en/detail/1186576.html
    All costs are calculated assuming that 1 USD = 4 PLN, and 1 EUR = 4.5 PLN.

    So, after a successful introduction, I guess it's time for a more detailed story of my car - a MY'88 Colony Park that spent most of its life in Poland, and will seemingly continue it further, while most of the contemporary, large USDM wagons finished their lives as hearses, and were finally transferred to graveyards themselves. Let's start with some personal background, and then move to the car itself. In general, if one prefers to start from that point, head to the second post.

    Ok, let's begin. I am not a really old man, but not a very young man, too. I was born in 1987, so my childhood happened to line up with the transformation (from a communist system into a something capitalism-like), and the post-transformation era. Apart from a lot of not-nice things (mafia clashes, gang bombings, collapse of the financial system etc.), there were some quite enjoyable: the TV decided to buy a lot of movies and series from abroad - mostly from the US, and Western Europe, but some Japanese anime were also imported. Some of them were aired starting from a random, not the first, episode, some of them lacked some episode during the seasons, some others carried completely irrational names ("A glass trap" for the "Die Hard" is a brilliant example, but eg. National Lampoon series were also massacred in the translation...). Nevertheless, these series and movies usually depicted a certain type of cars, not really seen in the central/eastern Europe: large sedans and wagons, in a boxy shape, with lots of dingling parts, lamps, and chromes. Not much of that could be seen on the roads. A typical car was something like this:

    Attachment 55187

    Or like this:

    Attachment 55188

    They were obsolete, crappy, non-reliable, you name it. They are valued now, but mostly by those, who didn't have the nightmarish experience of driving them, or being driven inside. My family got something a bit different, a Dacia 1310p:

    Attachment 55189

    So nothing really good as well. Rotting at an alarming rate... but getting a better car was beyond the financial reach of my mum. For me, the only chance of seeing these interesting, large cars, was to watch "Kojak" or "Father Dowling's Mysteries" on the TV. And, sometimes, there was an US stretch parked close to my home - I believe it could have been the workhorse of the US Consulate in Kraków, as the Consul himself lived nearby. I recall it had an ornament badge with the dealer's/body-maker's name, something like "Pontanim" it was? But nevertheless, getting an US car was not an option at that time. In fact, the Dacia has been replaced by something totally opposite: a Lada.

    Attachment 55190

    It wasn't t h a t bad. Needed a lot of force to turn the wheel (power steering is an ameyrikan-capitalist thing that is useless for a brave worker in a communist paradise, isn't it?), was dancing on ice in the winter, but was quite reliable. One thing that was always dead, was the onboard clock. Really dunno why, maybe it was just broken? This was the first car I tried "driving", when I was some 17 years old. It was the last communist car we owned, and when the engine started to show an excessive wear, it was decided to phase it out. Mum wanted a large sedan, or a station wagon. The initial try was a VW Passat B3, which my mum liked for its blobby shape, but they were too expensive. Another option, that we aimed at, was a Volvo 740/760. There was one sensible car, but Mum assumed that a 2.8 engine will burn a lot of fuel. Well, I own one now and no, it is not an excessive burner. Similar to that one thwack, which was finally bought - the one like that below:

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    It was battered. It was worn out. It was burning a lot of fuel. It was maintained poorly. A three-port joint is broken? Hey, let's short-connect the two most important ones, and put a l a r g e s c r e w to block the remaining one. And more like this. The car was a total crap - and it ended crashed into a trunk of some idiot, who decided that using turn indicators is something he does not need to do. Finally, mum got her Passat, which then stayed with us till... well, it is still in the garage, lol.

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    Looks like I have no current photos of the actual car at hand. Will have to make some... The Passat served as a main family car from 2005 to 2014, when it was replaced by a small A2. But for now, let's get back to mine car tastes. Right after finishing the driver's licence training, I started looking for a car for me. It wasn't an American one, but it was quite close enough: I was looking for a boxy sedan, namely the Audi 100 C3. And, for the first time, I have encountered the US version of an EU car. Unfortunately, I assumed that it was not in a very good shape... and settled for an EU one that was also a total crap, and was modified a bit to resemble the USDM one. With the 5mph bumpers, especially!

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    I drove it for a couple of years, finally changing it for an A8 as the "long distance" car. The idea of getting an USDM car was dead for a couple of years... till I made a decision that the Passat has to be phased out, too. It served as the basic "heavy duty", daily car tirelessly - but it was getting a bit obsolete, and "not fun". No air conditioning, just the basic instruments, no ABS... driving it during a snow storm was quite a problem! I turned my eyes to a missed opportunity, the Volvo 700/900 series... but describing them would be quite a lengthy thing, so let's say I will save it for another forum section, and another day. The two drive-able Volvo's have their own topics on the TurboBricks forum, so if anyone wants to learn more about them, I will gladly share a link.

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    And I am out of space for attachments. Let's close this one and start a new post...

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    Nevertheless, let's focus on the main point: the amcar thing. You might have already noticed, that the two cars of my choice were in general looking like an US-sedan impostors: large, boxy, equipped with substantially larger engines, than the typical, compact ones. Also, in case of both of them, I was looking for the USDM version: in case of the Volvo's, I can say that there is some kind of a curse bestowed on me: I have already tried to buy around 10 USDM 740/760/940/960, and none of this attempts succeeded. Obstacles included general crappy condition, decision of the owner to sell the car in parts, broken timing belt (after I was scheduled for an appointment with the seller!), failure to find an importer who could help me in buying a slightly damaged 760 Turbo from Canada (I had all the necessary parts in my basement...), and many others. It got me a bit frustrated, but still, I was looking for another 760 to get. At some point, the Facebook marketplace algorithm has shown me, instead of a 760, this thing:

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    Well, it has one particular thing that would be fun: it's name sounds very similar to the Polish word for d*ck... so generally, saying "I have a big cutlass", or "I need to take care of my cutlass something is dripping out of it" would be helluva dad jokes. I send a couple of posts, and was quickly corrected: If you aim for an amcar, aim for a real one. The FWD Olds is not going to be what you are looking for. So I started looking for a Caprice Wagon, or a Country Squire. And that was not actually easy, because... well, you know these cars, right? They handle edgy. They are really large, but a lot of this space is "useless", eg. is used by the beak with hollow space inside. They burn a lot of fuel. Etc. Add to this that a minimum price for getting a car imported from the US to EU is round 2 500 USD, and well, you know why they are not that popular. But there is one particular occupation, where none of the cons really matter: burial companies. LTDs and CC Wagons, as well as Roadmasters, Custom Cruisers etc. make great hearses. You just have to get rid of everything in the back, leave the front seats and interior parts only, put metal plates on the floor, cover windows with them... and this is what happened to most of them. Out of the cars I was looking for, or I have seen, or have called the owner, most of them have been altered at least a bit. You know, one can ride a car with a 40-cm high tin cross on the roof, or replace it with a wind rose made out of BadDragon dildoes, becoming a local attraction, but still - nothing actually nice. During the process, I found one non-hearse CV which was used as an advert post. While the car was moreover complete, it had a lot of dents and damages in those spots, where someone was applying the chisel, and was painted black matte over the original red paint. Many interior parts were missing, the carburettor was only working if the fuel was applied directly into it, the electric starting motor was broken. And during the test drive, one of the brake jaws broke. Great, isn't it?

    In the meantime, I spoke more with some friends that rent a garage next to mine. One of them drives a 1994 Seville, and is quite fluent in the USDM stuff. While I was complaining about the general feeling I had from the CV - especially, that the interior was of rather mediocre quality when it comes to materials - he told me about a car model that could actually be sensible for me: a Colony Park, the "luxury" version of a CV. But well, how can one get a CP when most of these cars are already sent to the crusher? Burials are usually a manifesto of wealth and power of the deceased, so people want biggest, newest, and most luxurious hearses, not old ones from the mid-80s. I found that there were three CPs available for sale in the last 5 years. One looked particularly nice, but was sold more than 2 years ago - the one below:

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    I even put the upper photo as my desktop background! But there was not a single trace of a CP nearby. Not even in the rest of Europe! That was one bad thing, as Colony sounds nearly the same as Colon, so there is a huge space for dad jokes like "something is wrong with my colon, I saw some oil dripping from it" etc.

    One particular Wednesday, I went for an usual D&D session, and sometime amidst the usual clusterf*ck in Barovia my phone started to whine, with the usual FB messenger tone blasting one after another. It is not a typical thing to happen in my case, and such an occurrence is usually something problematic unfolding (like, get your ass back in the car, horses just tore a hole in the fence and are invading the local crop fields). But it was a simultaneous inflow of moreover same info: there is a black CP for sale in Warsaw, some 300km from my home, for ~4000$, the e x a c t one I got on my desktop screen. And there are already some people asking for it, so move your ass and call the damn owner. Which I actually knew - I got a set of alloy wheels, and a spare set of red interior for my Volvo estate from him, some two years before. A quick call, and we are set up for a meeting during the weekend. Quite a sensible option, as my parents are taking my 960 to a mechanic close to Warsaw, actually (they have a second flat there), and I can pick them up for the way back, instead of them taking the train. The one last thing is, do I have a spare $4000? I will have, as I am waiting for a ~4500 payback from the IRS, but that's not at hand for the moment. And, in an unusual feat of lack, I got a call from work the next day - seemingly, there was an executive decision to give me a reasonably-well-paid prize for the last year's publication record. So, what could go wrong?

    Oh, everything could, probably. But it went quite well actually. I got myself packed on Friday, and got the final sigs: I went to the drugstore to get some meds for the horses, and the lady before me was asking for a sh*t named C O L O N - C . Can you feel it?
    The road to Warsaw was quite ok, some ~4 hours, the only problem was that it was slowly starting to rain. I got to see the car finally - and it was looking really neat!

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    We went for a test ride, and after it I asked for the final price (it was listed as a negotiable one). The seller agreed on 3750, and I told him I will most probably buy the car, but let's just give me an hour so I can eat something, check if I can retrieve all the money at once, etc. I drove to my parents place, and so later than the agreed time, I called back and said I am taking the car. We agreed to pick the car up around 6 PM, when they are back from some "unplanned" visit to their family. I was told they will give me a call when they are close to their home again.

    Time was passing by, and I started getting a bit nervous - also, the weather deteriorated. I tried calling - to no avail. I tried contacting by the FB - also, no avail. This got me a bit nervous already, as I sensed something far more dangerous than a simple delay. And I was, unfortunately, right: the seller sent me a PM that he knows how I will react, but they are actually not certain if they want to sell the car at all, and they need to think about it, as many people are asking for it.

    You know what I am most amazed of? That I did not send him a single cursed word! Well, after a few harsh ones, I generally openly stated that I can give them the 4k they wanted - and have it done. And while the initial info was that "it is not only the price", they agreed for that. But they only could get back home around 9 PM, so...

    Screw it. I can wait. Just bring the car, man.

    Fortunately, they did. Signed the papers, checked that ~1/2 of the gas tank is gone, so it starts to reach the E level, started the engine, and left Warsaw. Only stopped at one gas station to buy a flask of engine oil, a flask of power steering fluid, and fill it up to the cap. While leaving, I put "I'm excited" by Pointer Sisters on the stereo, and drove right into a thunderstorm, reaching home around 2 AM. So, finally I have an amcar in my hands, what now?

    Well, first of all, I found out how to post large photos here '-.- so I can just share a subset of nice photos I made soon after buying the car. I filed the paperwork needed for new licence plates, did the basic check, cleaned the engine... The car has a second nickname, from the Rainbow's song "Lady Starstruck", as Lady Starstruck is nothing but bad luck, exactly like this one. And I have an ESO bumper sticker with Starstruck written on it somewhere.
















    As you can see, the lights have been re-worked to fit the EU regulations (more on that in the next post!), there is a nasty scratch on the left side, there are small bruises and dents. The car was manufactured as a dark blue one, and later repainted to serve as a hearse, but it was not eviscerated of interior for this task, so it is nearly complete inside. The airco is off, tailgate window does not work, electrical antenna is dead, shift indicator is stuck on P. Oil leaks from here and there. Front stabilizers are worn off. But probably the biggest problem is the worn off body frame: it was assumed to be in a good condition, but during the preparation for chassis maintenance, the tinsmiths found that someone has put a sh*tload of some "anti-rust mastic" on the already rusted parts, closing the drainage holes. And as a result... well, two tinsmiths have already declined taking on the job, the third one has suffered a stroke recently.... but a colleague of mine, who collects classic cars, has an old tinsmith who can do virtually anything with cars, and we are going to pay him a visit. Dunno when, though. But I am aiming for a large maintenance, so the car can be safely driven in winter, too.

    So, a few photos of the interior from a weekend cruise now, and I am going to grab something to drink and describe my battle with the lamps, and that will be all for today.

    Luna plushie was a birthday gifts, I tend to put plush MLP ponies in all my cars, with a colour matching the interior clothing. In general, the car is, well, freaking fun to drive. It does not drive fast, it does not corner as good as the 760, it does not reach the top speed of 960 Turbo, but it is very relaxing to drive it. Also, it catches a lot of attention! Our friends drive a Panamera, and believe me, if these two cars are parked close to each other, no one bats an eye on the Porsche, but nearly everyone stops to see the Colony Park. Probably the most extreme situation happened a few days ago: I was pulled over by cops, and after rolling down the window, I heard "Good evening sir, you have one heck of a nice ride! Enjoy the evening, you are free to go" O_O. I assumed it could have been my mistake and the cop was only signalling me to slow a bit so he can cross the road (they were doing a quick alco-check of a driver on the middle lane, and the squad car was parked to the right), but maybe he just wanted to see the car from a closer perspective. Or maybe, what I was afraid of, he noticed those damn headlights...

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    So, the headlights, huh? You might have noticed that the rear lights have an amber insert. That was made to turn the car into a PL-law-compliant one. Unless your car is a registered oldtimer, you have to have a certain set of light in your car, or it won't go through the MOT. Of course, one can always try to sneak through the system, but with the increasing level of control, and additional security measurements, that's getting way much difficult. The law says you should have asymmetric white/yellow headlights with white front parking lights, red rear parking lights, and amber indicators (or whatever floats your boat, but it has to shine amber-ish). In case of the US cars, the easiest way of dealing with the issue was to cut a piece of the tailight and replace it with an amber plastic inset. The front, amber standbys would be modified into amber blinkers and white standbys, and the headlight glass should be changed, too. Changing the HB1 into an European H4 bulb was also a typical practice.

    The Colon has went through all of that, with one important ad-don: as one of the previous owners assumed that the H4s are not bright enough, they have installed a set of Chinese xenon bulbs, with HID ballasts etc. But this is not a good idea actually: to pass the MOT, you need to have a certain type of headlight glass, a self-positioning sensor, and fluid sprinklers, so that you are not blinding the other drivers. Someone seemingly had a friend who was doing the MOTs, and the junk they made was not a problem in passing the inspection.

    But I don't actually want to get a ticket for that. Also, as the voltage during the engine start tends to drop, it happened frequently, that I had to re-start it a couple of times before the lights were working (if the voltage drops below the level necessary for the "ignition" of the xenon bulb, it won't start again unless switched off and on). Oh, and why was I unable to switch 'em off? Because they were brought to life as soon as the key was inserted and rotated in the ignition. Last but not least, the autolamp stopped to work: it used to during the first days after purchase, but it died soon after, and there was no "follow me home". So I had to do something about that all.

    Ok - let's grab some coffee:



    And see what we have here:








    Doesn't look nice at all. Apparently, there are t h r e e sets of lamp wiring here:

    1) The original one, which is actually dead in case of the low beams (high beams are ok), but somehow, its parking light cables are attached to the parking light socket in the right lamp, the socket is empty;
    2) The standard EU-H4 one, which seems to be working well (correct voltage), it supplements the original one, the right one is put in a small plastic bag, the right one is connected to the...
    3) ...Xenon one, which is now the main source of light, problems as listed above.

    And there is also this thing:




    Which I assumed to be an additional trigger for the Xenons to start. All of that hanged on these small self-closing straps, with only one solid point of installation, the ground, which is actually screwed to the beak support structure. I got myself a pair of scissors, and promptly cut out all these straps, unplugged the electrical connectors, unscrewed the ground. And the whole wiring was then removed:





    But that's not everything. There are still some "installation tubes" placed in the headlights that have to be removed. So I took a screwdriver...




    And dismantled the whole stuff, finding that one of the screws for the plastic lamp cover is missing, and 1 of the screws that keep the left H4 lamp is not original. I am waiting for a set of used parts to come, maybe I will find the missing screws there. But finally, I got this thing out:



    And was able to put everything altogether. Aaaand.... nothing!

    The lights are dead. All of the headlights, and those fancy fender ones. What the hell?

    Ok, there is only one thing that was not a part of the xenon wiring that I took out - the long cable that connected these large electrical elements (relays for the autolamp unit?) with the left fender light. After restoring the connection... everything works fine. Well, the lights knob does not work, but that's something I was used to. Checked the circuit breakers below the instrument cluster beforehand, but found none broken. So I guess, that either these set of large things is broken, or the dashboard switch, or the switch's wiring is broken somewhere. Or there is another circuit breaker somewhere? I guess I will have to take a look inside the Haynes' manual. As for now, I laid the trigger cable in a slightly less visible way.




    During the afternoon drive I noticed that the autolamp is alive again! The one weird thing is that it happened twice that it switched the high beams, and turning them on again was accompanied by a strange, mechanical noise. Don't have a clue what's that so far. I have already ordered a nice set of H4 NightBreaker Laser bulbs, so that I can see a bit more when driving in the night, and I am going to have to buy this one, too:



    This is what I found in the right fender light.

    Ok, probably that's all for now. I am thinking about putting a set of long-range beamers behind the grille, but that's a plan for the future.

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    Ouch, the last photos of the 2nd para were missing. So, these are they, just in case:



  5. #5
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    Sounds like quite an adventure.

    The headlight switch connector is famous for melting and making your headlights and parking lights unhappy. Might be worth a look.

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    Id highly suggest picking up an EVTM (electrical and vacuum troubleshooting manual). The haynes wont help.
    ~David~

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    My 2004 Mercedes Benz E320:The Benz

    Quote Originally Posted by DerekTheGreat View Post
    But, that's just coming from me, this site's biggest pessimist. Best of luck

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    Welcome! Take some pics of the undercarriage sometime.
    '79 Continental Town Car (needs some repairs.)
    '90 Crown Victoria LTD
    '94 Crown Victoria (needs an inspection.)

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    Hi everyone,

    Thank you for the new input. I'll try to get some photos of the underbelly as soon as possible.
    In the meantime, I read your advice on the autolamp and tried something new. The car is parked in the garage at the moment, with no ambient light at all. So I have unplugged the additional wire... and the lights work moreover ok - this meaning, the autolamp unit works really automatic when it is turned on and the light switch is set to off. If the autolamp is turned off, the switch works (albeit there are no rear parking lights at the first stage). So I guess I have to put the car in the sunlight and see what is happening. Also - I need to find the sensor itself, to test if I can dim/brighten it should such an operation is needed.

  9. #9
    The Brown Blob 87gtVIC's Avatar
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    The sensor if right in front of you under the dash pad. You can put your hand over it to simulate darkness.
    ~David~

    My 1987 Crown Victoria Coupe: The Brown Blob
    My 2004 Mercedes Benz E320:The Benz

    Quote Originally Posted by DerekTheGreat View Post
    But, that's just coming from me, this site's biggest pessimist. Best of luck

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    Quote Originally Posted by 87gtVIC View Post
    The sensor if right in front of you under the dash pad. You can put your hand over it to simulate darkness.
    Thank you. How much light would be needed to simulate daylight? A thrower LED flashlight/telephone camera led would do, or it needs a specific wavelength/spectral range?

  11. #11

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    Hey I literally had the same problem with my 89 Ltd and it was this little guy right here
    . Not too hard to swap out only a couple screws and bam all my lights came back on with no issues.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by bnw View Post
    Thank you. How much light would be needed to simulate daylight? A thrower LED flashlight/telephone camera led would do, or it needs a specific wavelength/spectral range?
    flashlights work fine for this test if in a dark spot. May take up to 30 seconds for them to respond though.

    Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -- Albert Einstein
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    ... and it should all work like magic and unicorns and stuff.
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    I found some time yesterday to drive the car out of the garage and test the lights. Turned the autolamp on while in the garage, the lights were shining. While emerging from underneath the building, there was this strange mechanical noise out of the relays... but the lights went off. After pulling the lights' knob, they are shining once again. So I guess that everything works now fine... moreover.

    I still have to get this bulb:



    But I don't know which one it is exactly. Is it W21W, or W16W?
    I also got some new headlight bulbs to replace the cheap, no-name H-fours I placed there when dismantling the xenon unit. Here's a photo of the box:



    They are quite nice when it comes to the buying price (around 15$ per pack), and are genuine Made in Germany ones. They also come in the HB1 variety, but these are twice the price. Also, H4 can be used "twice" actually, when the first filament goes off, one can connect the second to the power bus. I hope to have some time to switch them tomorrow morning. Also, I got a set of winter wheels, with Cooper winter tyres. I only have to figure out how I can remove the hub caps from the turbine rims. I know that the rims themselves have three rods, on which the hubcap should lock. Do I just rotate it until it gets freed?

  14. #14
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    Removing the turbine caps always sucked.

    Rotating does nothing.there are not reliefs in that cap to set it free you need to pop the cap over a peg. It is a brutal process.

    You have the factory tire iron in the car? One end has a sharp lip with a curve to it that helps popping the cap off.

    A couple thread for guidance.

    http://www.grandmarq.net/vb/showthre...r+turbine+caps

    http://www.grandmarq.net/vb/showthre...g+turbine+caps

    http://www.grandmarq.net/vb/showthre...r+turbine+caps



    What part of the car is that bulb out of?
    ~David~

    My 1987 Crown Victoria Coupe: The Brown Blob
    My 2004 Mercedes Benz E320:The Benz

    Quote Originally Posted by DerekTheGreat View Post
    But, that's just coming from me, this site's biggest pessimist. Best of luck

  15. #15
    Wagon Addicted Tiggie's Avatar
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    I use a small crowbar with electrical tape on the end for the center caps.

    The cornering light bulb can be a US 1156 (round base) or 3156 (wedge base). My 88 had the round base. Either style you have, it looks like part of the base may still be in the socket. The 3156 crosses to a P27W from what I see.

  16. #16
    The Brown Blob 87gtVIC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tiggie View Post
    Either style you have, it looks like part of the base may still be in the socket.
    That is why it looks so funny.
    ~David~

    My 1987 Crown Victoria Coupe: The Brown Blob
    My 2004 Mercedes Benz E320:The Benz

    Quote Originally Posted by DerekTheGreat View Post
    But, that's just coming from me, this site's biggest pessimist. Best of luck

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by 87gtVIC View Post
    Removing the turbine caps always sucked.
    Thank you for all the links! I was able to deal with the caps in a proper way... the story is presented somewhere below.


    Quote Originally Posted by 87gtVIC View Post
    What part of the car is that bulb out of?
    Quote Originally Posted by Tiggie View Post
    The cornering light bulb can be a US 1156 (round base) or 3156 (wedge base). My 88 had the round base. Either style you have, it looks like part of the base may still be in the socket. The 3156 crosses to a P27W from what I see.
    That one comes from this fancy light:



    I don't like the theory that something is missing from the bulb, but... ehh, it's Lady Starstruck, isn't it?

    So, let's brag about the wheels. Having read the posts, I knew that it is not going to be an easy thing. First of all, I took a look under the right cover to see if there is any sign of the tire iron. It wasn't there. Crap. I only found the large jack (which, I suppose, is lacking the stand). So, I made a makeshift set of tools:



    The hub uninstaller is made of a tire iron from Volvo 760, with an extender from a broken wheel wrench. The yellowish thing is a pack of recyclable garbage bags (each month you get a set of yellow (plastic+metal), blue (paper), and green (glass), and they are picked for free). The laundry basket is used as a net which prevents the hub cap from killing some random pedestrians.
    So, all is set...



    ... and done!



    The first one was the worst, the latter ones went without a problem. Seems like someone has already bruised them a bit before, anyway. The cap was gone, and I could take a look at the screws:



    Ouch! That is not a typical nut. The previous owner didn't say anything about these maggots... I started looking for the adapter, and finally found it, in a small cardboard box with a spare Chinese xenon filament inside:



    It looks like it has seen better days. Also, a detailed inspection has revealed that the original wheel wrench/tire iron is still there:



    This one is also worn off... fortunately, the part which is used to screw/uncscrew is still working. I might want to de-rust and give it a nice Hammerite finish later on, anyway. So, I rolled the wheels out of the garage:



    Nothing really superb, but they have proper white-walls (Cooper tires), which should survive till the end of this winter. Their ET is somewhat different than that of the turbines, but given the more narrow build, and more narrow tire, they should fit under the fender arches well. I got the front left wheel down, and did a quick inspection of the suspension and underbelly:







    So, here we are, where the corrosion strikes. It is painted over from the underside, so you can't actually see what is happening unless you take the wheel out, or squeeze somehow inside the wheel arch with the car still on. Nevertheless: as far as I have noticed, older Fords are either after a frame+belly refurbishment, or have already been recycled. Let's just hope the tinsmith is not going to force me to sell a kidney. Or two of them. It looks like there is still a lot of "meat" out there, but... let's not speculate.

    Unfortunately I am not going to show you the photos of the car placed on the new wheels. Why? Because they don't fit O_O Apparently, the central locking hole is some 2/3 millimetres too small in them. Not fairly sure, if my CP is somehow special, or in general the CV/MGM have a bit larger central holes than dunno, Rancheros? Or whatever the rims come from. I am going to grab the caliper and see how much exactly; then I will call the mechanical department in my workplace and ask politely if they could do me a favour in their spare time... I heard mixed reviews of enlargement of the central o r i f i c e (hey, the car is named colon, after all) in steel rims, but have been using a light trailer with a modified steel rim (it was the spare one, actually), and it was kinda ok. And I was definitely not driving very slowly with it, so... let's see what the technicians say.

    Maybe one better thing, I have noticed that my 760 sedan has a Ford battery inside (it used to have a Renault/Nissan one, which was moreover ok, as it is powered by a Française de mécanique PRV engine, but that one got a dead cell and has only been as a source of power for the electrical fences). I'm gonna get a proper Volvo one there, so I made a quick switch, and here we are:



    And I DEFINITELY need to dismantle this bar and re-paint it.


    I am going to drive a bit tomorrow, I need to bring the recyclables from the dacha to my home in Kraków (we don't have a signed agreement with the municipal services there), and the amount of bags is quite large. The winter pasture season started some 3 weeks ago, and we already have a lot of plastic foil used for haylage (hope that this is the right word... you know, sauerkraut/pickle hay, lol) packaging. So I guess I am going to put the NightBreakers on, and maybe check if there is any voltage on the parking lights. The non-detection from the last attempt might have been due to the autolamp turned on while it was quite sunny. Also, I might already be able to drop the wheels at the techs' office.

  18. #18
    The Brown Blob 87gtVIC's Avatar
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    No problem. Nice set up on catching the caps.
    ~David~

    My 1987 Crown Victoria Coupe: The Brown Blob
    My 2004 Mercedes Benz E320:The Benz

    Quote Originally Posted by DerekTheGreat View Post
    But, that's just coming from me, this site's biggest pessimist. Best of luck

  19. #19
    Beater gonna beat sly's Avatar
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    hubcap removal tool works wonders for getting those center caps off. Also with the rubber mallet built into it, helps with reinstalling as well.
    Something like this:
    https://www.amazon.com/Steelman-7503...dp/B00GWFOSBY/

    Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -- Albert Einstein
    rides: 93 Crown Vic LX (The Red Velvet Cake), 2000 Crown Vic base model (Sandy), 2003 Expedition (the vacation beast)
    Quote Originally Posted by gadget73
    ... and it should all work like magic and unicorns and stuff.
    Quote Originally Posted by dmccaig
    Overhead, some poor bastards are flying in airplanes.

  20. #20
    Member WagonMan's Avatar
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    In the picture of the front brake rotor, doesn't it look like the brake hose has a rub mark on it?
    WagonMan
    1990 Colony Park
    1970 HEMI Superbird

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