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What did you do with your Reatta today.


DAVES89

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On 12/21/2023 at 3:41 AM, DAVES89 said:

By the time I put the Red in storage it will have 200 more miles on it. That means I'll be right at 330,000 miles...

[Put it on this post to bring it back up to the top].

Got it out this spring and the A/C compressor looks like it gave out over the winter. there is compressor oil with leak detector all over the bottom of the car as well. I set an appointment with a shop the 2seater uses as they still have R12 equipment. I just have to provide the R12 and oil which I have plenty of. 

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Dave, If you're lucky maybe just replacing the seal behind the clutch will fix it.

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We'll see.

Was out to Gibson's [my local You Pick] and was window shopping looking at other Buicks. Found a pretty nice floor mat with the Buick Tri shield logo on it. It was a light beige so I washed it up real well, allowed it to dry and just sprayed it with the tan spray recipe found in the "How To" section. Think it's going to turn out pretty nice...

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The usual springtime startup ritual, actually two days ago, but a May 1st target. This is the first time I left the battery in the car, in a history dating back more than three decades, and used a battery maintainer instead. The car is stored in an unheated garage/shed six feet in the air on a lift. I still found a couple acorns, chewed, on the vents at the base of the windshield. The varmints must be ninja's 😁 Started and ran perfectly as there was no learning to be done like after a battery disconnect.

 

One item did appear that will bear watching and that is brake fluid level. I have the larger Hydac accumulator purchased from Spinning Wheels several years ago and it does drop the fluid level in the reservoir more than the standard amount. I noted the level was a little low at startup but everything was normal for the first mile or so, then the red brake light came on. Tried the parking brake, that's not it. Checked the brake feel and if the pump ran, all okay, but the level was much lower in the reservoir than I have seen before. I tried rapidly pumping the brakes to deplete the accumulator and the light went out, indicating to me that the low level warning light was the cause for the warning. This has not been a problem in the past but I suspect as the accumulator ages, and greater fluid is required to fill it, the actual fluid level will become more important. From a topped off level to fully pressurized, the fluid level will drop from the top of the level tag to just below it, so the capacity is substantial. I guess it is time to bring out the test rig and estimate the gas precharge and health of the accumulator. Oh joy👍 

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2seater, one place to check for a leak is inside your car, on the drivers side floorboard. My previous Reatta was leaking from  where the rod from the brake pedal goes in the back of the Teves unit. Ended up swapping out the whole Teves unit. Never heard of any other members here having this problem, I'm just lucky I guess. 

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Mine was leaking at the two rubber seal that the reservoir mounts on. Most people think they are just insulators but there are holes at the end of the legs on the reservoir. If they are cracked one can lose brake fluid that way.

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On 4/22/2024 at 3:36 PM, DAVES89 said:

Got it out this spring and the A/C compressor looks like it gave out over the winter. there is compressor oil with leak detector all over the bottom of the car as well. I set an appointment with a shop the 2seater uses as they still have R12 equipment. I just have to provide the R12 and oil which I have plenty of. 

I ended up having the compressor, dryer and the little valve in the line replaced. As I was sitting on about 10 cans of R-12 I stayed with the r-12. Also had the antifreeze flushed and filled as the radiator is in the way of getting the compressor out.

 Ready for spring!

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I'm no longer able to tell stories about troubleshooting my Reatta but I do have an interesting troubleshooting story about me wasting several hours of my time by making an assumption about how something works.

 

Since I got my GT I always wondered why the oil pressure gauge went up half way to the "normal" position when I started the engine cold or hot and stayed there all the time no matter what the RPM. That seemed odd to me so I temporarily installed a mechanical oil pressure gauge on the engine to make sure I had good oil pressure. The mechanical gauge showed 75 psi at idle on a cold start and then it went down to 35 psi at idle when fully warmed up. Spec in the repair manual is 20-45 psi at 1500 RPM when hot. I had 49 psi at 1500 so oil pressure is great.

 

So, in typical Reatta thinking, I assumed the oil pressure sending unit was bad and replaced it with a new one. Still the gauge in the instrument panel read "normal" all the time. Bad gauge? NO. After reading on the forums I discovered all GTs of similar model years as mine have the same "normal" reading without the needle ever moving just like mine. The gauge isn't a real oil pressure gauge at all. IT'S AN IDIOT LIGHT in the form of a needle on the instrument cluster gauge. The oil pressure sender I replaced is just a switch that closes above 6 psi and tells the needle in the gauge to move to the normal position. Either the gauge reads "0" as it does when the engine is off, or "normal" no matter what the real oil pressure is as long as it's over 6 psi. 

 

For me, the oil pressure gauge is the most important gauge on the dash of a car. You can't even make the gauge on my GT work as a normal oil pressure gauge that actually reads pressure by installing a real oil pressure sending unit. It wasn't designed to do that. What were the fools at Ford thinking when they put a oil pressure gauge like this in a Mustang? Even a real idiot light would be better than this stupid gauge design.

 

Rant over 🙂 

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Yup, found the same thing about my 97 Ranger, and you can’t just replace the sender with a true variable one either. The system won’t allow for it. The only solution is a stand alone gauge😑

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34 minutes ago, 2seater said:

Yup, found the same thing about my 97 Ranger, and you can’t just replace the sender with a true variable one either. The system won’t allow for it. The only solution is a stand alone gauge😑

Doing it on a Ranger makes no sense but doing it on a Mustang that is supposedly a "high performance car" is just plain crazy. It's got a fiberglass hood and trunk lid, aluminum overhead cam heads, limited slip differential, dual exhaust from front to back and huge roll bars for handling. Then they install a fake oil pressure gauge? Whoever came up with that idea should have been fired.

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12 hours ago, 2seater said:

The usual springtime startup ritual, actually two days ago, but a May 1st target. This is the first time I left the battery in the car, in a history dating back more than three decades, and used a battery maintainer instead. The car is stored in an unheated garage/shed six feet in the air on a lift. I still found a couple acorns, chewed, on the vents at the base of the windshield. The varmints must be ninja's 😁 Started and ran perfectly as there was no learning to be done like after a battery disconnect.

 

 

2Seater, I've been using a battery maintainer on each of my cars that get stored in the Winter for a number of years now.  In my opinion it beats having to go through the "learning process" with each car every Spring.  Also, I've never had any issue with "over/under charge" of each car's battery despite a few rumors that have crossed my way over the years.

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On 4/30/2024 at 8:17 PM, DAVES89 said:

Also had the antifreeze flushed and filled as the radiator is in the way of getting the compressor out.

 Ready for spring!

Last week I had to remove the compressor because it was leaking, and decided to try removing it without removing the radiator this time. I was able to move it toward the battery, rotate it 90 degrees upward, and out. 

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Update on the brake fluid level and pressure test. At this point I do not see any leaks at the suggested areas so I am in monitor mode now. I did break out my test gauge and as near as I can tell, my Hydac accumulator is in the 750-800psi precharge range. Not perfect, but still pretty good. The gauge flashes to ~800psi when the circulating valve is closed on the way up and drops off completely at ~750psi on the way down. The operating pressures observed for pump on and off are in the correct range at ~2,650psi shut off and ~2000psi for pump on. All appears well at this time.

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Not really a Reatta story but I did take the Red to the local fast food restaurant for lunch when I got done. 

 I'm really feeling my age as I did front and rear brakes on my neighbor's sister's Dodge Grand Caravan. Not so much the work but the constant up/down moving the floor jack, placing jack stands, getting different tools, cleaning caliper brackets, running for parts as the car called for different pads and rotors then I thought. 

 Time keeps moving on...

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58 minutes ago, DAVES89 said:

Not really a Reatta story but I did take the Red to the local fast food restaurant for lunch when I got done. 

 I'm really feeling my age as I did front and rear brakes on my neighbor's sister's Dodge Grand Caravan. Not so much the work but the constant up/down moving the floor jack, placing jack stands, getting different tools, cleaning caliper brackets, running for parts as the car called for different pads and rotors then I thought. 

 Time keeps moving on...

Welcome to the club buddy. You are in the phase of where it hurts after you do that stuff. The next phase of getting old is having to hold on to something when you get up and down to keep from putting too much stress on knees and other parts. Ask me how I know... 🙂 I can still do most of my own routine maintenance that requires getting up and down but I don't like to do it any more than I have to.

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Posted (edited)

You guys are still "youngsters" in my book.  I turn 75 next week.... knees and back wreak havoc with me when just detailing interior of my Reatta; never mind trying to change a tire! 

Edited by ship
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Ship, I am a Blessed man, I still get up under the dash,, a bit of an issue getting back out and my eyes don't always see what I am looking for, and I turned 85 in Feb.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I went for a drive yesterday which turned out to be shorter than planned. The smell of mouse pee was pretty evident. A general look over found my paper towels and Kleenex I keep behind the drivers seat was shredded. I noted a few flakes of paper when the car was taken from storage at the beginning of May, but not much beyond that. Today was a more in depth look and I found a large nest in the console below the shifter/ash tray area. It filled my small shark brand portable vacuum container one and a half times. Sprayed the area with bleach solution and left to dry. Fingers crossed that this is the source of the smell although oddly, it didn’t smell strongly of mouse even though it was an obvious nest🤔IMG_0748.thumb.jpeg.d9856490a3cda75fead19feb2adde4ca.jpeg


It has been three weeks since I noted my low brake fluid level and a recheck this morning showed perfect level and no leaks apparent.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Here you go Jon! We need more posts.

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finished install of new front struts . car off the jack stands, took it out for a drive. 

Still have not figured out the rough start issue.

IMG_9243.thumb.jpeg.152f5be5a964ac4f1d8b957fe819b68d.jpeg

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