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Old 10-11-2012, 04:59 AM   #1
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Unusual Repair

We have some pretty smart people on this forum so i was thinking of all my years in the business I have seen some pretty unusual/crazy problems and the repairs I had to do that solved it was something no one would believe.

So in that light I thought it would be interesting to hear what others have seen and repaired. Don't need to go into detail or even what kind of vehicle it was if you don't want to.

So I'll start with one of my many.

"PROBLEM"
Years ago had a car that was at 2 other places and the problem was the car would NOT SHUT OFF. Turn the key off and it would keep on running. Everything in the car worked as it should. Had to pull the coil wire to shut the car off.
"REPAIR"
Had to change the instrument/gauge assembly.

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Old 10-11-2012, 05:07 AM   #2
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Simple oil filter change that took a half a day of my life to remove....on the ground....in November. I had the auto school next to work change my oil previously and they about welded the fawker on. I had to break down the filter to get to the nut and cold chisel the nut off.

Edit - Or, how about the time I jump started my buddy one night and both my headlights blew out. I spent the better part of the next day chasing down the problem. Seems both headlight connections (at the bulb) were corroded and decided to stop working at the very same time. Just needed a little cleaning.
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Old 10-17-2012, 04:29 PM   #3
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Tacoma Mike, what vehicle was that? Sounds odd..

Not unusual but more of a welcome surprise..my dad's 88 Dodge Omni had a huge oil leak towards the back of the engine. He was told it was either a seal or the oil pressure sending unit. I FINALLY got hold of the car (since my sister also drove it and was never home)..oil all over the place. For some reason I checked a valve cover bolt and it wasn't even finger tight..nor were the others for that matter. I pulled 1.5-2 full turns on each bolt, let it run 10 minutes to burn the old oil off, and never an issue from then on
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Old 10-17-2012, 04:32 PM   #4
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XXXX is one of the sharper tools in the shedXXXX is one of the sharper tools in the shedXXXX is one of the sharper tools in the shedXXXX is one of the sharper tools in the shedXXXX is one of the sharper tools in the shedXXXX is one of the sharper tools in the shedXXXX is one of the sharper tools in the shedXXXX is one of the sharper tools in the shedXXXX is one of the sharper tools in the shedXXXX is one of the sharper tools in the shedXXXX is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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this thread reminds me of the fake Quantas airline mechanics log floating around the web a few years ago...

Quotes from the repair log of Qantas airline mechanics

After every flight, pilots fill out a form called a gripe sheet, which conveys to the mechanics problems encountered with the aircraft during the flight that need repair or correction. The mechanics read and correct the problem, and then respond in writing on the lower half of the form what remedial action was taken, and the pilot reviews the gripe sheets before the next flight. Never let it be said that ground crews and engineers lack a sense of humor. Here are some actual logged maintenance complaints and problems as submitted by Qantas pilots and the solution recorded by maintenance engineers. By the way, Qantas is the only major airline that has never had an accident.



(P = The problem logged by the pilot.)



(S = The solution and action taken by the engineers.)

P: Left inside main tire almost needs replacement.
S: Almost replaced left inside main tire.

P: Test flight OK, except auto-land very rough.
S: Auto-land not installed on this aircraft.

P: Something loose in cockpit.
S: Something tightened in cockpit.

P: Dead bugs on windshield.
S: Live bugs on back-order.

P: Autopilot in altitude-hold mode produces a 200 feet per minute descent.
S: Cannot reproduce problem on ground.

P: Evidence of leak on right main landing gear.
S: Evidence removed.

P: DME volume unbelievably loud.
S: DME volume set to more believable level.

P: Friction locks cause throttle levers to stick.
S: That's what they're there for.

P: IFF inoperative.
S: IFF always inoperative in OFF mode.

P: Suspected crack in windshield.
S: Suspect you're right.

P: Number 3 engine missing.
S: Engine found on right wing after brief search.

P: Aircraft handles funny.
S: Aircraft warned to straighten up, fly right, and be serious.

P: Target radar hums.
S: Reprogrammed target radar with lyrics.

P: Mouse in cockpit.
S: Cat installed.

P: Noise coming from under instrument panel. Sounds like a midget pounding on something with a hammer.
S: Took hammer away from midget.
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Old 10-17-2012, 04:49 PM   #5
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About a year ago, I was using a Dell laptop to download from an aircraft flight data recorder via an Ethernet cable. The download would stall if I plugged in the laptop's AC adapter, and resume if I unplugged it and ran on battery power. Avionics = witchcraft.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Tacoma Mike View Post
Years ago had a car that was at 2 other places and the problem was the car would NOT SHUT OFF. Turn the key off and it would keep on running. Everything in the car worked as it should. Had to pull the coil wire to shut the car off.
"REPAIR"
Had to change the instrument/gauge assembly.
A friend of mine had an old Chevy Astro during the university years. The ignition key tumbler was so worn, he could remove the key at any position, even with the engine running.
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Old 10-17-2012, 04:58 PM   #6
Sometimes when I close my eyes, I can't see.
Toyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tacoma Mike View Post
Hi Mike!!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by XXXX View Post
this thread reminds me of the fake Quantas airline mechanics log floating around the web a few years ago...

Quotes from the repair log of Qantas airline mechanics

After every flight, pilots fill out a form called a gripe sheet, which conveys to the mechanics problems encountered with the aircraft during the flight that need repair or correction. The mechanics read and correct the problem, and then respond in writing on the lower half of the form what remedial action was taken, and the pilot reviews the gripe sheets before the next flight. Never let it be said that ground crews and engineers lack a sense of humor. Here are some actual logged maintenance complaints and problems as submitted by Qantas pilots and the solution recorded by maintenance engineers. By the way, Qantas is the only major airline that has never had an accident.



(P = The problem logged by the pilot.)



(S = The solution and action taken by the engineers.)

P: Left inside main tire almost needs replacement.
S: Almost replaced left inside main tire.

P: Test flight OK, except auto-land very rough.
S: Auto-land not installed on this aircraft.

P: Something loose in cockpit.
S: Something tightened in cockpit.

P: Dead bugs on windshield.
S: Live bugs on back-order.

P: Autopilot in altitude-hold mode produces a 200 feet per minute descent.
S: Cannot reproduce problem on ground.

P: Evidence of leak on right main landing gear.
S: Evidence removed.

P: DME volume unbelievably loud.
S: DME volume set to more believable level.

P: Friction locks cause throttle levers to stick.
S: That's what they're there for.

P: IFF inoperative.
S: IFF always inoperative in OFF mode.

P: Suspected crack in windshield.
S: Suspect you're right.

P: Number 3 engine missing.
S: Engine found on right wing after brief search.

P: Aircraft handles funny.
S: Aircraft warned to straighten up, fly right, and be serious.

P: Target radar hums.
S: Reprogrammed target radar with lyrics.

P: Mouse in cockpit.
S: Cat installed.

P: Noise coming from under instrument panel. Sounds like a midget pounding on something with a hammer.
S: Took hammer away from midget.
Those are awesome, wish i could tell my customers stuff like like more often than not. We get some damn stupid complaints from customers. And probably 85% of the time the advisors cant even explain it correctly to the tech cause of just how stupid the complaint is.
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Old 10-17-2012, 05:17 PM   #7
41 Year Toyota/Chrysler Tech/ASE Master
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABA180 View Post
Tacoma Mike, what vehicle was that? Sounds odd..

Not unusual but more of a welcome surprise..my dad's 88 Dodge Omni had a huge oil leak towards the back of the engine. He was told it was either a seal or the oil pressure sending unit. I FINALLY got hold of the car (since my sister also drove it and was never home)..oil all over the place. For some reason I checked a valve cover bolt and it wasn't even finger tight..nor were the others for that matter. I pulled 1.5-2 full turns on each bolt, let it run 10 minutes to burn the old oil off, and never an issue from then on
As a matter of fact it was a Chrysler.
Like i said. This is the unusual repairs. Elect dash had a short and would feedback through and keep the body controller active as well as the power module.

Your repair was actually quite common. The constant heat cycles would loosen the bolts. I use to use some weatherstrip caulking on the threads. Worked for me.
The airline mechanics quotes are awesome.

Here's another.
Old Plymouth Satellite had a occasional "ting ting" noise from the right front. I finally found it.
Someone put a small bottle on a string inside the fender and the inner liner with a note.

"How long did it take you to find this?"

Brand new car
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Old 10-17-2012, 05:19 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KenLyns View Post
About a year ago, I was using a Dell laptop to download from an aircraft flight data recorder via an Ethernet cable. The download would stall if I plugged in the laptop's AC adapter, and resume if I unplugged it and ran on battery power. Avionics = witchcraft.




A friend of mine had an old Chevy Astro during the university years. The ignition key tumbler was so worn, he could remove the key at any position, even with the engine running.
My GMC Pick Up could do that. I LOVED IT. Never turned the ign back to lock. It was great not having 35 keys hanging off it.
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Old 10-17-2012, 05:24 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tacoma Mike View Post
Here's another.
Old Plymouth Satellite had a occasional "ting ting" noise from the right front. I finally found it.
Someone put a small bottle on a string inside the fender and the inner liner with a note.

"How long did it take you to find this?"

Brand new car
The GM plant in Fremont, CA was notorious for this. They stopped after Toyota bought a 50% share of the plant and started making Tacomas there.
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Old 10-17-2012, 05:28 PM   #10
41 Year Toyota/Chrysler Tech/ASE Master
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toyota Tech31 View Post
Hi Mike!!!
HEY JASON !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 10-17-2012, 05:30 PM   #11
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Back when I was a Ford technician, I had a Ranger come in for a no start.
Checked it out.
Showed 1/2 tank fuel.
No fuel pressure.
Dropped the fuel tank to inspect the fuel pump.
Had 18 4"x4"x14" bricks of marijuana stuffed in the fuel tank.
They were all wrapped and vacuum sealed.
The fuel tank had no fuel in it, reason it would not start.
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Old 10-17-2012, 05:31 PM   #12
Sometimes when I close my eyes, I can't see.
Toyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shedToyota Tech31 is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gasgasman View Post
Back when I was a Ford technician, I had a Ranger come in for a no start.
Checked it out.
Showed 1/2 tank fuel.
No fuel pressure.
Dropped the fuel tank to inspect the fuel pump.
Had 18 4"x4"x14" bricks of marijuana stuffed in the fuel tank.
They were all wrapped and vacuum sealed.
The fuel tank had no fuel in it, reason it would not start.
Your location explains it all.

EDIT: Just googled your location, not as close to the boarder as i expected for that kind of find, but still cool.
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Old 10-17-2012, 05:52 PM   #13
41 Year Toyota/Chrysler Tech/ASE Master
Tacoma Mike is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoma Mike is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoma Mike is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoma Mike is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoma Mike is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoma Mike is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoma Mike is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoma Mike is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoma Mike is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoma Mike is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoma Mike is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gasgasman View Post
Back when I was a Ford technician, I had a Ranger come in for a no start.
Checked it out.
Showed 1/2 tank fuel.
No fuel pressure.
Dropped the fuel tank to inspect the fuel pump.
Had 18 4"x4"x14" bricks of marijuana stuffed in the fuel tank.
They were all wrapped and vacuum sealed.
The fuel tank had no fuel in it, reason it would not start.

you would think you wouldn't forget about something like that.
NICE !!
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Old 10-17-2012, 05:56 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gasgasman View Post
Had 18 4"x4"x14" bricks of marijuana stuffed in the fuel tank.
They were all wrapped and vacuum sealed.
The fuel tank had no fuel in it, reason it would not start.
Whoever did the wrapping picked gasoline-resistant plastic bag material?
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Old 10-17-2012, 06:06 PM   #15
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gasgasman is one of the sharper tools in the shedgasgasman is one of the sharper tools in the shedgasgasman is one of the sharper tools in the shedgasgasman is one of the sharper tools in the shedgasgasman is one of the sharper tools in the shedgasgasman is one of the sharper tools in the shedgasgasman is one of the sharper tools in the shedgasgasman is one of the sharper tools in the shedgasgasman is one of the sharper tools in the shedgasgasman is one of the sharper tools in the shedgasgasman is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
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It was that Food Saver type plastic wrap.

DEA shut the whole service dept down.
They took all my info down like I was involved in the trafficking.
Oh, then they hauled off the stash and never said thanks.
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Old 10-17-2012, 06:09 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gasgasman View Post
It was that Food Saver type plastic wrap.

DEA shut the whole service dept down.
They took all my info down like I was involved in the trafficing.
Oh, then they hauled off the stash and never said thanks.
no good deed goes unpunished.
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Old 10-17-2012, 06:23 PM   #17
Senior Member
joes06tacoma is one of the sharper tools in the shedjoes06tacoma is one of the sharper tools in the shedjoes06tacoma is one of the sharper tools in the shedjoes06tacoma is one of the sharper tools in the shedjoes06tacoma is one of the sharper tools in the shedjoes06tacoma is one of the sharper tools in the shedjoes06tacoma is one of the sharper tools in the shedjoes06tacoma is one of the sharper tools in the shedjoes06tacoma is one of the sharper tools in the shedjoes06tacoma is one of the sharper tools in the shedjoes06tacoma is one of the sharper tools in the shed
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KenLyns View Post
The GM plant in Fremont, CA was notorious for this. They stopped after Toyota bought a 50% share of the plant and started making Tacomas there.
I've also heard of story like that. It was a brand new Cadillac. Someone hung a nut from a string inside an inaccessable spot in the rear quarter panel. After the dealership took the car back and replaced it with another (old man bought a new car every year from the same dealer), they cut the panel open and found the nut......with a note rolled up inside of it: "ha ha ha, how long did it take you to find me, you rich son of a bitch?"
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Old 10-17-2012, 06:26 PM   #18
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We had a Ford Taurus with a similar prank.
It was a rubber band with two washers on it, behind the dash.
Ford came in there and took pictures etc. They said they can pinpoint exactly who did it.
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Old 10-17-2012, 06:28 PM   #19
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Here's mine: My dad's old 87 Toyota 4runner developed an electrical short of some kind....here are the symptoms: The parking lights in the front fenders would turn on whenever the brakes were pressed, the cruise control would not work anytime the headlights were on, the headlight reminder chime would come on anytime the driver's door was open with the ignition off and your foot on the brake pedal. The culprit: one of the rear brake/tail bulbs had burned out in such a way that the two filaments soldered themselves together. The mechanic couldn't figure it out and threw up his hands. Dad finally realized that the brake lights were on full brightness whenever the headlights were on, and did not get brighter when applying the brakes. Easy fix using the KISS principle to diagnose.
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Old 10-17-2012, 06:38 PM   #20
41 Year Toyota/Chrysler Tech/ASE Master
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Name: Mike
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joes06tacoma View Post
Here's mine: My dad's old 87 Toyota 4runner developed an electrical short of some kind....here are the symptoms: The parking lights in the front fenders would turn on whenever the brakes were pressed, the cruise control would not work anytime the headlights were on, the headlight reminder chime would come on anytime the driver's door was open with the ignition off and your foot on the brake pedal. The culprit: one of the rear brake/tail bulbs had burned out in such a way that the two filaments soldered themselves together. The mechanic couldn't figure it out and threw up his hands. Dad finally realized that the brake lights were on full brightness whenever the headlights were on, and did not get brighter when applying the brakes. Easy fix using the KISS principle to diagnose.
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