Monday, June 12, 2017

Easy To Follow Instructions

Back in the days of my not-yet-wasted youth, there was a piece of poetry in Mad magazine on the topic of assembly instructions. It involved a fellow assembling a box kit model and started off with a line about "tab A into slot B insert" and went on at about 3 pages length covering every overused phrase in the instruction writers manual while picturing the assembler victim becoming increasingly distraught as he went along.

At the end there stands the fellow looking like he's ready for a 2-week vacation in the rubber room, next to a 3 or 4 foot tall model of the Eiffel Tower, complete in every detail as the poem ends: "Your Sherman Tank is now complete!"

In the course of my career I've had to write an instruction manual or two and I promise you that if you follow my directions, the job will be completed successfully in a minimum of time.

The fellow who wrote the instructions referenced in the Mad poem however, seems to have gone on to writing automotive service manuals. After carefully following his instructions which did NOT include mention of the special tool needed to remove the special fastener, I got the special panel, located in the wheel well to drop out, revealing that NOTHING is in fact installed behind it, the pictures in the book notwithstanding. Seems the manual was published before the last revision of my car was released even though the title assured me that everything was covered.

At this point I'm pretty certain I know what needs to be replaced and how to get to it without too much hair pulling, so the next step is to visit the friendly local dealer and see if he actually has one in stock. The car is 15 years old, and the part is a 2-3 ft long piece of rubber hose with a clever plastic locking fitting on each end. Should cost about $10.

Feel free to enter your guess as to price and availability in the comments. Worst case I suspect will be waiting for an '01-02 Camaro to appear in the local junkyard where I can get the hose for $5 eventually.

And The Winner Is: All parts for my car are out of production and out of stock unless they're still being used in something current. Field expedient repairs are indicated. The good news is that that sort of thing is probably much cheaper than the factory stuff and lasts just as long.


A SImple Man said...

2 weeks and $175. I'd try or the yard.

A SImple Man said...

2 weeks and $175. I'd try or the yard.

Merle said...

that's what I ran into with my '95 T-bird..... :(


Anonymous said...

I believe it is law in the USA that the manufacturer must supply parts for 8 years. After that since they cannot compete with the aftermarket, they stop carrying the parts. Prior to that law, the Big Three were accused of deliberately not stocking parts in order to sell new cars.