October 10th, 2015


Pick 'Em

Lisa and I went to Sparks this afternoon to Pick-N-Pull to look for replacement "doghouse" engine cover latches for the Astro. They had four comparable models to my 1987 Astro. (Anything in the 1985-92 Chevrolet Astro or GMC Safari range is broadly comparable.) One of them had latches that weren't just as badly damaged as those on my van. Lisa had me get the toolkit (you pull your own parts at Pick-N-Pull) and she removed the latches. We also considered pulling the seats out of one of the four vehicles (the one whose seats were in tolerably good condition), on the grounds that it might be cheaper than paying to have the existing seats reupholstered. However, the seats that weren't already shot were swivel seats (mine are fixed) and don't have fold-down armrests like mine. While Lisa said she could do it if I really wanted, she wasn't in favor of it, so I decided to skip it.

The latches cost $8, plus the $4 admission charge to enter the yard in the first place.

Then we went over to Twin City Surplus to buy tools. My auto toolkit has gone missing; in particular I didn't have the common metric sockets that the Astro uses. (If O'Reilly didn't loan parts, I would have been in bad shape trying to replace the alternator when it did the Halt-and-Catch-Fire thing three weeks ago.) Most new tool sets are cheap Chinese junk, says Lisa, so we hunted through the surplus shop for $1.50 worth of common sockets (11, 12, 14, and 16 mm) that my van uses.

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When we got home, Lisa vacuumed the Rolling Stone in preparation for me taking it down to the Bay Area tomorrow morning. I need to be up pretty early tomorrow in order to give me time to pack and get on the road with enough time to give me some time to visit my sister on the long drive down.