jobs that take longer than you thought - gordonbennet
I wrote this yesterday by the way, saved it, sent it, IE decided to have a mardy and crashed the page, and the saved words vanished?arrgh!

Anyway here goes again.

I?ve been waiting for a nice weekend as I wanted to replace the rear discs/pads on my MB 124, so midweek I ordered up the parts, checked they had arrived and yesterday morn whipped off one side so I had the parts for matching at the factors.
The handbrake shoes looked too grooved (by abrasive dust etc, they almost never get used on a moving drum unless you use the foot operated handbrake to clean them up occasionally) so I bought a set of those too.

As you would expect the discs/drums were simple and probably took 1 hour tops.
The shoes on the other hand caused much cursing and struggle, contortions needed to get in position to release and resecure the hold and return springs whilst also fitting them over the actuator mechanism?.all behind the rear hub which I didn?t want to disturb?as often Haynes turned out to be as much use as a chocolate teapot.
So it took me 2 hours just to remove and refit those blasted shoes, and I couldn?t have done the job without the high quality narrow long pincers SWMBO went to get for me, you have to remove/refit the securing springs through a hole slightly larger than a wheel bolt hole in the hub?much oathing during that part..;)

How I wished I hadn?t disturbed those shoes, but couldn?t bear the thought of leaving them inside new discs.
Elbows, knees, and many of my other parts now ache and I have numerous cuts and abrasions on hands.

Out of interest the parts came to £84 for Lockheed Delphi, so an economical job really.

What jobs do you remember that should have been simple but turned out to be long winded and frustrating.
jobs that take longer than you thought - Saltrampen
Most jobs involving rear brakes and suspension on my 11 year old Fiesta take an hour extra as have to deal with corroded nuts and bolts.
When in the proper garage the old oxy/acetylene torch often comes out.
My Fault for living too close to the sea!
This week I will tackle the anti roll bar links, nice bit of rust there!
Changing oil once took me an afternoon as filter had stuck solid, trip down to halfords to buy more filter spanners was required. Parts: £20 Time: 3 hours Tools : £20
jobs that take longer than you thought - ForumNeedsModerating
Any & every 'job' I attempt on my car takes several times longer than my endearingly boy-ish confidence estimates. Latest thing was replacing a duff horn. I checked the wiring/fuses weren't at fault firstly - by swapping over, checking ground etc. etc. Anyway, decided it was the horn itself - the ubiquitous ammonite shaped type - and checked the Hz output (two-tone loud Mercedes) to get a replacement. By, luck found one in a local factors - with 'correct' 300 Hz output.
Well, it wasn't correct as it turned out, so now have weedy contralto 'duo-tone' that's embarrassment factor 10 & would be appropriate for a 50cc Chinese moped. Luckily, my fence fell down the next day, so I can devote myself to fixing that now.
jobs that take longer than you thought - diddy1234
changing spark plugs on a diesel engine takes hours !
(sorry couldn't resist)
jobs that take longer than you thought - Alby Back
Changing a number plate bulb. Put the kettle on put some instant in the mug. Nip outside to change bulb while kettle boils. Ignore protestations of wife that I had agreed to go to Sainsburys, Won't be be a minute love....

Remove number plate bulb holder, all on schedule so far. Identify bulb. No problem, got one of those somewhere.....Find bulb. Coffee has now mysteriously appeared at my side. I didn't do that did I ?

Fit new bulb into holder. Place holder on ground while swigging coffee and trying to find the screwdriver I used only moments ago to remove the component.

Find screwdriver. Tread on bulb holder unit which breaks. Mention this indoors and suggest practical solution is for me to go and get part while she nips to supermarket. We don't need much do we ?

Drive to dealer. Queue for a while at parts desk. Get to front of queue. We can get one in for Monday sir.......

jobs that take longer than you thought - perro
Well, it was like this officer ... I took the heads orf my 3ltr Capri, did a decoke, put it all back together *carefully* and - as I was refitting the distributor, the drive shaft fell out and into the sump. I could see the critter but there was absolutely no way I could get the damn thing out so - orf came the sump !!!! & !!! & !!!

Edited by Webmaster on 04/05/2009 at 01:46

jobs that take longer than you thought - bell boy
i litre corsa alternator
looked an easy job
engine mounting is in the way though
scratched my head ,got the belt off
couldnt work out how to get the belt and tensioner back on though
needed an assistant to pull the belt back as i put the tensioner bolt back into the fragile aluminium threaded hole

so next time if there is one the job wil take 20 minutes with helper
but i spent 60 minutes struggling and cussing
jobs that take longer than you thought - DP
Thermostat on SWMBO's old mk2 Astra 1.6 petrol. Just over four hours including two emergency trips to the breaker, removal of the timing belt (twice) and much swearing.

It's very annoying when one of the thermostat cover bolts snaps off as you attempt to undo it. And doubly annoying when the thermostat housing is routed behind the timing belt and around the end of the cylinder head in a squared U shape, rendering it impossible to remove when the timing belt is in situ. And it's trebly annoying when you get it all back together, start the engine, and a waterfall runs down the side of the head from the leaking thermostat housing to cylinder head gasket that you re-used and really shouldn't have.

And especially, triply, insanely annoying when, after all your efforts, the car gets stolen that evening and written off!


Edited by DP on 03/05/2009 at 11:21

jobs that take longer than you thought - Lud
I always hated doing drum brakes. Used to leave my hands looking as if I had been in a savage brawl with six coal heavers wearing mediaeval armour. I could never understand why I hadn't lost a finger or two.

Haven't done any for years. It's just as well because fixing a leak in the downstairs lavatory cistern day before yesterday had the same effect. I am not stiff all over today but my nails are dirty and I have several cuts and bruises.

Oh, and by the way: two trips to the plumber's merchant in mediis rebus. Wrong trousers of course (for grovelling) so no money. Fortunately the excellent chap trusted me for the £13.50 although he didn't know me.

Edited by Lud on 03/05/2009 at 12:15

jobs that take longer than you thought - bathtub tom
Clutch job on a land crab without engine lifting hoist. A bit of four by two across the wings taking the weight of the engine/gearbox. The subsequent dents in the top of the wings that always reminded me of the job despite lots of rag padding.

Unable to shift the gearbox (input?) shaft nut and having to cut it off with a hacksaw while laying on my back under a swaying mass. A new nut had to be placed on order.

IIRC it took less than a week.
jobs that take longer than you thought - DP
I always hated doing drum brakes. Used to leave my hands looking as if I
had been in a savage brawl with six coal heavers wearing mediaeval armour. I could
never understand why I hadn't lost a finger or two.

Lud - I could not agree more. Hideous things. Getting that last spring on, on one's hands and knees holding a pair of pliers with two hands and sweating and swearing. Comparing the layout of the assembled shoes and springs with the tiny photo in the Haynes manual, because it looks like something is not *quite* right. Struggling with dysfunctional self adjust mechanisms which never worked right from new, and ten years worth of rust and brake dust has only made things worse. Hideous things, which are infinitely worse than those pesky carburettors mentioned in the other thread, IMHO.

The slow replacement of the brake drum with the brake disc is probably one of the only examples of a new, improved piece of automotive technology which is actually easier and nicer to work on than its predecessor.
jobs that take longer than you thought - gordonbennet
The slow replacement of the brake drum with the brake disc is probably one of
the only examples of a new improved piece of automotive technology

Agreed, the problem with my own and many other cars is that the handbrake drum is inside the rear disc, so you have shoes designed for maybe only one change in the life of the car.

My posts have to be very short at the mo, my 'puter is dying..;)
Edit, you're post above with triple annoyances had me in stitches...and probably caused your good woman to learn lots of new phrases.;)

Edited by gordonbennet on 03/05/2009 at 13:32

jobs that take longer than you thought - Rattle
My lack of confidence means I don't really tackle any jobs which might be hard. Bodge some sensor wiring on my first Fiesta but it was easy, just cut out damaged wire, replace with new.

But when it comes to DIY I have a lot of confidence which means Frank Spencer moments. I fitted a new bathroom sink last year and I am very proud of how the job turned out. I convinced my mum that all the plumbing was in place.... two hours later I have cut out all the existing plumbing as everything is in the wrong place. By four hours into the job I have got the new sink attached to the wall and then struggeled with how to stop the leaks on the compression joints. I then had the massive problem of getting the ubend and waste pipe to fit so lots of use of hack saws and swearing. Next day I solved the problem of the leaks and it has worked perfectly since.

One job I did a few years back was replace the speakers on a mates early MK3 Fiesta, I thought how hard could it be. Well it was easy BUT taking the door card off when you have manaul winders is not a 1 spanner job! The job took about two hours in the end.
jobs that take longer than you thought - Robin Reliant
Replacing the glow plugs on my Mondeo is a job I loath. It seems to need every available combination of spanner, socket and extension ever made as each one is hidden away in a different manner from the others. A real knuckle skinner that takes forever, and of course it is always a job for the depths of winter.
jobs that take longer than you thought - bell boy
few tips

when doing things like brakes always take a few photos on your phone or a good camera so you can look at it in more detail on your pc if you need to ,this is especially good if you are going to need bits and or going to leave the car and do something else

for the removal of door window winders on things like corsas and fiestasm just get a fluffy towel or similar behind the handle and gently pull,you will see the spring clip poing in the air never to be seen again,but it saves lots of faffing about (or put a hook on the end of an old screwdriver or welding rod)
jobs that take longer than you thought - David Horn
Oil change on the Passat. NEVER, EVER want to go near that evil underbody tray again. Even with the car raised it took nearly an hour to get it back on, and even then half the clips fell out. Would it kill them to put a little flap in it over the drain plug?
jobs that take longer than you thought - DP
Pretty much every car I see driving along with the undertray hanging off is a VAG car. That'll be why, then!
jobs that take longer than you thought - dxp55
Don't suppose you cut a hole in undertray where oil plug is ??? just in case ??

Backstreet garages are designed for doing brake drums
jobs that take longer than you thought - gordonbennet
Update...assuming the 'puter doesn't crash and go through the window without opening it.

Took car out for run today to see me mate's new home, bedded brakes in nicely, travelled a few hundred yards with handbrake applied to bed the shoes in, readjusted when we got have lovely smooth brakes and foot operated handbrake secure and tight in 2 clicks.

Took the opportunity of pressure washing underneath with the wheels off ready for waxoyling later.

Still ache a bit..;)
jobs that take longer than you thought - madf
Yaris has a little cover in the undertray for the oil filter and another one for the drain plug. It IS a Toyota of course.

Worst job was : lots over the years so too many to recall.. the worst are the ones that reveal other weaknesses: like Mini rear subframe ending up welding most of the floor and verticals where the subframe bolts enter. A real pia..

Or rusted solid front disk pad retaining pins on a 106... or Mini (original)bypass pipe replacement, or anything to do with Minis for that matter..

jobs that take longer than you thought - piggy
NEVER EVER want to go near that evil underbody tray
again. an hour to get it back
on and even then half the clips fell out. >>

One trick i used when I had the Fiat Coupe and needed to replace the undertray was to secure one end loosely with plastic ties until I got a couple of bolts in the other end.The slack in the ties made positioning the tray a doddle. It did have an access flap for the sump plug and filter,but it was a swine of a job to get at the filter.This is why some owners fit a longer filter.