Oh Amy, you’re so funny.

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So, Sunday I spent almost the entire day under the car. I’d scheduled two activities, plus some bonus ‘unlikely but if I have time’ ones:

– Fit exhaust
– Service
– Check sidelight wiring
– Change steering wheel
– Replace bolt on seat that doesn’t fit very well
– Clean windows

So, that was the plan

Here’s what I got done

– Nearly fitted the exhaust

It turned out that whilst the new exhaust looked like it should be a beautiful fit on a standard Austin 1300, it is a terrible fit on the car I’ve got, which has a Metro 1300 engine. The Austin exhaust is a pea-shooter that runs straight up the middle of the car; a single pipe. The Metro has a 2-into-1 pipe at the front that it appears wiggles all over the damn shop.

Now my thought, my 150 pound saving thought was that I would attach the 2-into-1 section from the new Metro exhaust to the straight-shot new Austin exhaust. Easy.


– The clamps holding the exhaust to the manifold, one of them is broken and it took a long time to get it back together and back on. Irritatingly, later on I discovered a spare, good one, in a bag of otherwise useless nuts and bolts that came with the car.
– They’ve moved the mounts so that the mount for the silencer is about a foot forward of where I think it should be…right in the middle of the current silencer. Which appears to be designed to have mounts at one end. Eventually I gave in and chopped other sections of the expensive new exhaust into many bits, so that the exhaust could be fitted. It now has about 4 joins in the last section pushing the silencer forward and down a bit to clear the back of the auto-box selector.
– Because I had to chop it up so much, and didn’t realise I’d need to fabricate some kind of new mount at the back, I didn’t have enough clamps or rubber mounts.

So despite being on a night shift tonight I shuffled the car back to the back of the house, hopped it up on ramps (I hate putting cars on ramps on gravel/mud, they slide about all over the flipping place) and managed to put the new clamps on.

And y’know what, she sounds much better. I’m just praying it all hangs together. I’m not really very happy with the join from the 2-into-1 section to the main exhaust. Really it should be welded, but I’ve no welder.

Anyhow, so I pootled across to stock up on the requisite quantity of Two Day Coffee. The journey was flawless, apart from the marked flaw of turning a corner on the way home and having the car die. Initially I pondered fuel starvation. It’s very hot out there today, and traffic wasn’t great. Eventually it became apparent that it was fuel starvation, but not heat related. The insanely complex Lucas fuel pump (fitted as an aftermarket installation for reasons that escape me) had got bored of the tedious job of pumping petrol and decided to stop. It took me several minutes to work this out during which I pushed the car to the side of the road and up onto the pavement. Austin 1300’s are remarkably light, incidentally.

Thankfully a quick tap on the pump and it kicked into action, the car starting and running just fine afterwards. Can’t say it filled me with joy, though.


Kate's a human mostly built out of spite and overcoming transphobia-racism-and-other-bullshit. Although increasingly right-wing bigots would say otherwise. So she's either a human or a lizard in disguise sent to destroy all of humanity. Either way, it's all good.