Monday, 23 July 2012

Cars and engines

The insides of my car are vastly different from anything I've ever had before.  It is in fact a mystery to me.
My first car was an ancient old Wolsley. It was built like a tank and had a most unfortunate colour scheme...It was maroon and beige! It was quite possibly the ugliest car ever to be made!  It had red leather bucket seats and a walnut fascia and was notoriously un reliable..
As a single mum I had to get one child to school and the other to nursery every day whilst I taught. On bad days the car failed to start but undaunted I learned to take out the plugs to dry them, and day to day learned quite a lot about its inner workings... It did have a starting handle but a quick go with that put me off for ever....I couldn't actually move it!
This present car, my beautiful beetle looks nothing like anything I've ever had....inside and out....and this morning before calling out the garage man yet again I did go looking under its bonnet!
In the last three years I've had three new batteries....the last one only a few months ago....
If the car hasn't been run for a few weeks whilst I'm away then not starting is only to be expected....but I've been running it quite a lot lately!
I also bought it a new solar panel to sit on its bonnet...I thought that would be the answer to all my problems...but yet again this weekend it failed.....
My husband's car is going in this afternoon for its yearly treat....a complete  make over at the body shop so he needs my car to get around in.....
His car is scraped badly .  We do live in an area of outstanding natural beauty which includes very narrow lanes!
I suppose we all take our toys for granted until they stop functioning....but on these occasions my mind goes back to my  old Wolsley.
Eventually I sold her for scrap for a fiver.
She continued to run for several more years and was last seen on the main street of Bury with a policeman walking around , taking  her particulars....
But at least she had an engine I could deal with!


  1. How very brave of you to even think of trying to 'fix' your beetle.
    Perhaps, if all else fails, you could try singing to it, you never know!

  2. I'm a fan of older cars. I've never ever bought a new one. I learn to find out the basics of what might go wrong as soon as I get it, by judicious reading of the hand book and a bit of research, nowadays, quite simple with the internet there.

    My first car was a beetle, rear, air cooled engine, little changed from the 1948 version (I think) No heater, no seat belts and simple to service. I even used to change the brake pads myself.

    The brake, throttle and clutch were operated with a cable mechanism, which seemed relatively interchangeable. I can remember once driving in Germany on a weekend (when everything is closed) and the accelerator cable went. I was able to take off the clutch cable as an emergency replacement and drive home just using the accelerator to change gear. 250 miles like that.

    Nowadays, I have a suzuki. 14 years old. nearly twice around the clock and still going strong.

    My spouse bought a brand new car two years ago. I dare not look under the bonnet, because of the electronics.
    And in fact, just this weekend I had to show her where the spare wheel was and how to lower it from within the boot. Some things are still basic.

    1. Thanks for that both of you. The good news is that it's come home and is running! It remains to be seen for how long!