Well, that didn’t go to plan..
2 weeks in Canberra and all we have to show for it is a terrible selfie with food.. Ha!
Firstly, apologies for the lack of updates recently. The last couple of weeks have been pretty tough and as much as I love sharing our lives there’s times where it just needs to take a back seat.
We left Bathurst last Wednesday and made the trip to Canberra, we headed to a mates place who had not only offered us somewhere to stay, but also to assist with the engine swap. He’s the same guy that drove a 7 hour round trip to deliver me my exhaust parts in Bathurst. Yep, certified legend. On Thursday we borrowed Stu’s partners car and trailer and we did a 7 hour trip to pick up an engine and gearbox from Sydney. The fact I survived the traffic is a minor miracle in itself, far more daunting than an engine swap, or so I thought.
Friday I spent the day disassembling the engine ready to receive its new parts. Thanks to the previous owner (of the car, not the person I bought the engine off) who had used water and not coolant, so the lack of anti corrosion additives meant that several (4!) of the bolts that enter the cooling system were rusted, so they snapped! Not catastrophic, but certainly a painful issue to contend with. Other than that the engine looked perfect, so on Saturday and Sunday we extracted the broken bolts and started removing the engine. Having 3 guys who have done multiple engine swaps meant it all went fairly smoothly. By Sunday arvo the new engine was assembled with its new parts and was back in the car leaving me the fairly simple job of hooking it all back up. Monday and Tuesday my body was a mess, a life of skateboarding has given me some spinal issues and 2 days in a car and 3 days working on a car had taken its toll.
We eventually got the car back together, it started up first time and the unthinkable happened… We had the EXACT same problem we started with, which was a severe vibration for those interested. I was absolutely gutted, weeks of planning, a week of work and nearly $1000 down the drain, all for essentially nothing. I’ved ruled out all of the major possibilities and now have quite a few people scratching their heads for ideas.
In light of this we changed our plans of heading to Newcastle and are now heading to a friends property in Wagga, he’s got plenty of space so I’ll have a couple of days to recover physically (and mentally… ha!) and start planning some way to try move and forward to get this bloody car fixed.
I’ve gotta say thank you to some awesome people who helped us along the way. A huge thanks to Stu and Jo, not only for having us here and helping me work on the car, but for dealing with me whilst I’ve been a stressed out mess, oh and Jo’s cooking, can’t forget that. We have both loved being here and wish it’d been a better outcome for all involved! Another huge thanks to Dave for continuing to answer my telephone calls and for donating the gearbox to our cause, why you continue to help me through my car issues I’ll never know, you should be charging me by the minute. Also shoutout to Ray who spent his entire weekend helping us do the swap, this is a bloke I’ve only met once on our last travels and guess what?! He helped us fix the car then too! Thanks to Spiro from Sydney City Automotive PTY LTD for holding the engine for me until we got there and got the required funds together. On that note, thank you to whoever the individual is who anonymously donated $150 towards our camp fee’s at Barcoos Farmstays Bathurst, whoever you are, you rock. Also, to Ken and Elaine at Barcoos, thank you for making us feel so welcome, we had the best time there. Because I’d be here all night otherwise, a collective thanks for all the advice from various people over the past 2 weeks.
Because I am not sure how I’m going to feel, there could be a week or so before there’s any more posts on here. I’m physically, mentally and financially exhausted and I need to spend some time focusing on the important things, which right now is that cute kid sitting there next to his (very well groomed) dad. The cute kid not only spent a week doing absolutely nothing exciting and having very little time with his dad, but when things went south with the engine and I was absolutely gutted, he got up the next morning, came to me and said “Dad, I want to help make you happy, I’m going to cook you raisin toast in bed for breakfast”, and so that’s exactly what he did.