Smokey update II
Ah...so this weekend was not what I had hoped on several counts. I believe I mentioned wanting to get a secondhand stereo before the weekend was out--I began my Saturday with just that goal. I pulled out the old(!) tape deck/radio and examined the twisted mess of cords and plugs that most obviously didn't match up. Before running off half-cocked, I called my brother Ben, who happened to be working on his old Demolition Derby car (stripping out the engine and junking the remaining metal) with my cousin Josh... He suggested I come on over and let him and Josh check it out. This I did, and after one trip to Bellingham with Josh and the purchase of some severely overpriced adapters from Circuit City, we made it back to the shop...only to run into the henceforth unknown, and therefore slightly overlooked fact that the CD player I was attempting to install was unequivocally inoperable... (i.e. DEAD).
"What about that rattling?"
The question was to define the remainder of the day. That was the suspected problem with my alternator bearing or maybe the water pump. Whatever it was, it was making the car sound more and more like a diesel engine.
Josh promptly dove into the compartment with his small hands and felt the water pump--time for a replacement. Josh is the ideal Honda mechanic. No matter how much he complains about the cramped conditions under my hood, he still has to admit his small but strong frame is the ideal American counterpart to the car's Asian creators.
"Pick up a timing belt while your at it," he said several hours later before I headed to the auto parts store.
It was after 7 p.m. when I drove out of the shop with a gapping hole under my dashboard and a normal sounding engine--not to mention a quicker ignition. No music for a while, no matter how poor the quality.
In other news
That role of duct tape has found a new home on my dash. Thanks for the suggestion Beth.