Zebulon Montgomery Pike Trail to Red River, Mexico Journey 1807

Day 5: October 2nd, 2003 Pittsburgh (Garage)

The cold front is still around Pittsburgh and we have record lows for this month. Yesterday I forgot to buy some more stuff for my today’s truck work. This I do now in the morning.

I am back around 10am at David’s Garage. First I start with the transmission job. I carefully loose all the pan bolts to not make a big mess. After all there is no oil drain plug in this transmission. You have to take off the whole pan.

I made it to catch all the oil from the pan edge. But now the real fight starts. The pan gets stuck between the muffler pipe at the front and the transmission mount at the rear. After a couple of hours fighting this setup, I eventually give up. Either I have to remove the muffler pipe or the transmission mount to get the pan out. I wonder how someone can design a car so crackbrained.

As I have no chance to proceed here without assistance, I start the oil change of my transfer case. I also want to use synthetic oil there and want to see if any oil went from my transmission into the transfer case.

But the transfer case is not overfilled. Therefore it must be a leaking seal at the oil pan, why I have always lost so much oil in the mine. It is really easy to drain the oil. But filling up is more complicated. There is not much space at the top, so you cannot simply put an oil can there.

But I am prepared and already bought an injection, which you usually use to soak in gas. With this injection it goes fairly well to refill my transfer case.

It doesn’t take long until David is back from work. He helps me to take the transmission mount out, so I can pull the transmission pan. I would have not been able to do it myself. Then I can pull out the old oil filter. He suggests that we shall have something for dinner, before we continue.

I hesitate first, but then agree. After dinner I start working by myself again to pull out the old oil filter seal. It is so much baked in, that I really have to scratch it from the metal. Even then I still can see a weird edge.

In the meantime David is back and we try to get the new filter in. But we are not able to fully insert it. It looks like the new seal does not slide in the opening. Even when we slightly try to use a rubber mallet, we have no luck. We take out the new filter and David tells me, that there is even a metal ring at the seal — a metal ring?!

Suddenly I realize: The metall, where I scratched the seal off, was still part of the old seal! After I put something peaked between the metal ring and the opening I can bend the metal ring together and take it out. Now it is really easy to insert the new oil filter with seal.

To finish, I only have to put some special sealing paste on the pan, put the new seal on top and carefully screw on the pan. Then mounting the transmission mount and the main task is done. We are already approaching midnight and David has to go to bed. After all he has to get up very early tomorrow again.

The rest of the work I can do without his help. First I have to mount back a bunch of parts, which I removed unnecessarily in order to get the pan out. Then I have to fill up my transmission and start the engine.

While the engine is running, I fill in the rest. Now I made it — at 1am. I drive back home and try to be as quiet as possible. But I am so tremendously dirty and covered in oil (partly even in my hair), that I definitely have to take a shower before I go to bed. Hopefully I will not wake up Helen. At 2am I am eventually ready to go to bed…

  • Sights
  • General
  • Breakfast: Home
  • Dinner: Home
  • Motel: Home
  • Distance: —