[DML] Ten Things I Learned On The DCS Road Trip
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[DML] Ten Things I Learned On The DCS Road Trip


Yeah, okay, been outa the D loop for a while, ocassionally cruised 
the list here to keep tabs a bit, involvement picking back up since 
DCS.  Life just got busy--good busy, mostly, but busy.  Missed you 

Anyhoo--geez, what a show!  That was a great weekend, really terrific 
work Ken!  My first one, no less.  (PF got pre-empted by a wedding.  
The rest by a D in resto.)

I learned a few things on the DCS Road Trip...

1)  Yeah, the show's about cars, but I was totally unprepared for how 
social an event it is--think I saw more old acquaintances than 
DeLoreans!  I also think it's Aliens that are secretly sending Fred 
around to check up on me.  :-)

2)  Mr. Murphy's attorney musta been billing overtime.  Hours before 
I left for PR one of my door windows fell off the tracks in the 
door.  Y'know, it's been a very long time since I last tore a 
DeLorean door apart.  Just a nuts and bolts job if you've never done 
it--the upper trim panel comes off in your hands.  Pop the motor and 
move the window till you can get at the nuts on the drive to get it 
loose so you can put it back on track.  Tighten the drive cradle 
while you've got the window out.  BTW, once inside the door, I 
strongly advise stuffing a rag under any little part you take loose 
till it's safely out of the door, cuz if you drop it...

Courtesy of the Mx delay, the midnight departure did wonders for the 
Chicago traffic...

3)  Don't know if I've ever actually been on the ramp from the 
northbound Dan Ryan to the Ike, but at 3 am with zero traffic--whoa!  
Roller coaster for cars!  Reg and Bryan, that stainless steel frame 
of yours is just way sweet in the sweepers.  With a twin turbo to 
plant the rear end--yee-hah.  We almost went back for another go just 
to do it again.

4)  Using de-greaser to clean up the underside before a car show can 
do interesting things to a speedo cable if the plastic weather jacket 
is split.  Under the plastic is thoughtfully provided steel armor, 
but it's wrapped like a spring.  So when you degrease anything near 
it, you'll end up removing some of the lube inside the cable at the 
same time, as the de-greaser leaks through the armor wrap.  Then the 
cable squeaks as the wheel speed changes, and it comes and goes as 
the cable flexes when you turn the wheel.  After Marty Maier (sp?) 
helped me evaluate the situation, we decided it probably had enough 
lube left in it to get home, so I decided to monitor the noise and 
the heat, resolving to pull over and disconnect the speedo if the 
sound changed.  Fortunately it stayed in one piece for the rest of 
the road trip, so I could use my cruise control.  Thank heaven for 
small favors.

Gratitude Note A:  The guy who called my attention to it was on the 
engine build demo team at DCS, and he's wearing a white T-Shirt and 
wire-rim glasses in the pic on the top row of the "Saturday General" 
pictures on Ken's website.  Wish I could remember your name, man.

We took the D for a spin when the building emptied out Saturday to 
sample the Island Turbo, and he noticed the tell-tale intermittent 
squeak.  Thinking it familiar, he puzzled a moment and then hit the 
nail smack on the head--speedo cable.  As the remaining lube worked 
its way back up the tube, the noise went away, but not the heat and 
the wear.  Dude, since it piped down, I might've driven that thing 
till it failed and ate my angle drive--I owe ya one.

BTW, I think I got preoccupied with all the implications of 
disconnecting the cable, no speedo, no cruise control, etc, (Okay, 
I'm spoiled. :) and I don't recall whether I was exactly engaging 
company after that--I do recall being a little distracted 
geographically.  :)+1   Hope I wasn't rude or anything, and I sure do 
appreciate the help--that was a biggie.

Gratitude Note B:  My car won first in my mileage category.  I just 
own it, but the prize for the artwork and craftsmanship that went 
into the restoration of this car belongs to Don Steger and Dan Botkin 
of DeLorean Motor Center, with considerable credit to Reg and Bryan 
Pearce for that drop-dead gorgeous frame, Rob Grady for the 
suspension package and for getting me through twenty-plus years of Mx 
before the resto, and Ron Wester for those way cool carbon-fiber door 
sills that say Twin Turbo--to mention a few.  I can't look at that 
trophy without seeing you guys.  Just so everyone on the DML knows 
the real deal here.

5)  Did you know Beloit, Wisconsin has more than one Dog World?

6)  My kid has been to Europe, but never to Wisconsin till this 
week.  But Dog World?  Dang...closed.

7)  It's easy to miss the turnoff for 20 to Galena cuz the sign is 
hidden under a bridge in Rockford, and you'll end up taking 90 to 

8)  How is it that three and four-year-olds know these cars by name?  
The only name I knew outside of my neighborhood was Zsa Zsa Gabor.

9)  Cleaning a Show Car, Take Two...so you power-wash yer six-
cylinder sweetie and wipe 'er down so she shines real pretty, and 
park 'er in a show fer a coupla days.  Then ya gets in 'er and 
takes 'er for a road trip a coupla hundred clicks or so, and get 'er 
all warmed up like only an open highway can.  Then ya stops fer a 
little Kentucky Fried Buzzard and when ya crank 'er back up, the old 
girl starts missin' like a heathen between Christmas and Easter, 
whaddya do?

Ya call Don Steger on the cell phone, that's what.

So Don says "Ya gotta twelve-millimeter wrench?"  Yup, don't D home 
without it.  Then he says "Turn yer banjo bolts on the fuel distrib a 
quarter turn, one at time, till ya find one that doesn't make the 
engine run funnier.  That's the cylinder that isn't firin.'"  By 
george, right spot on the money that was.  Cool.  Now what?

So Don says "Betcha power-washed that chrome before the show, 
din'ya?  Betcha the high-pressure water got under the spark plug 
boots and it's sittin' in a nice puddle around your plug, and since 
it's capped by the boot, when it gets nice and hot, it doesn't 
evaporate, it just boils and steams in there and shorts out your 
plug.  So pop the plug wire and get the water out of there."  Hm.

So I grab a pair of pliers, cuz I don't have a plug wire puller in 
the car and I hate yankin' on the cables, breaks the conductors and 
all, and I ease the wire out and...Yo, drippin' bigtime!  Now since 
I'm at a gas station with a tire pump, I just blow that spark plug 
cup out with the tire nozzle (they blow real good that way) and shoot 
myself in the face with nice hot plug water.  But hey, the plug is 
drier'n Kansas on Sunday.

So I pulls all the other ones while I'm at it.  Guess what?  Three 
more wet plugs, and I'm guessin' they'd not reached the boiling point 
yet.  Man, if I'd kept drivin' 'er after I first noticed the missing, 
I coulda been clear out in East Egypt when the poor old Six turned 
into a Two and the quit on me right there.  Glad I stopped early.

BTW, I called Don back to tell him things was okay.  I said "Ya know 
that missin' engine?  Well, hey, I found it.  Somebody put it in the 
back!"  Not even my kid thought it was funny.  Hmp.

10)  If ya try to sneak up on Grandpa's house when you're goin' by at 
midnight with a twin-turbo DeLorean with headers and twin cats, and 
ya shut off the lights to be real sneaky...er...can't quite put my 
finger on what I learned in Lesson Number Ten...

10693 and Counting


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