Deja vu all over again

Once again I found myself sitting bolt upright behind the wheel of a ’61 Lincoln, watching the tension on the tow strap as we made our slow way up back roads to the repair shop. There were a couple of differences this time: The horn would sound when I tried to start the car, the windows were up and staying that way, and the tow strap was attached to a different part of Rudy’s truck. The last became significant as we turned onto Central and I watched Rudy’s bumper bend. Bummer.

The car had been released by the shop, not with a clean bill of health but with the assertion that it would run OK. Bzzzt. Incorrect response. It almost made it back to Rudy’s house before conking out. Back we went. The car ran fine off the gas in a plastic gas can, and the mechanic offered to rig that up under the hood so we could shoot with the car. I vetoed that on safety grounds. Things will be getting hot in that engine compartment. I cringed and authorized further mechanic’s time to go over the fuel system from the tank forward. If it was bad gas rotting in an old tank, things could get expensive, and there was no guarantee that we would have a useable Crusader when it was done. Yikes.

While this was going on, I was aware that fuego was in the air, heading this way. I was looking forward to someone who knew how to make a movie arriving on the scene. As a bonus, fuego is the owner of the backup Crusader, and it is he who could best call the shots when it came to cutting up the Hotelsmobile.

Late that night I made my way to the airport and met the arrival of our director. Rudy was there as well, to say a brief hello. fuego, tired from travel, aborted our green chile finding mission. We retired to our country estate were we sipped suds and discussed movie issues for a while until fuego could stay awake no longer. I lay awake for a while, anticipating my slow fade into irrelevance on this production. I will still have things to do, but already most of the tricky stuff has been assigned to people more qualified to do it. I feel better already.

6 thoughts on “Deja vu all over again

  1. Wasn’t the ’61 Lincoln the car that was already in great shape, such great shape that you would have to be nice to it?

    OK, long shot, but maybe worth pursuing, although it again means a car you have to be nice to — Jack Gehre used to have a ’64 Lincoln convertible, similar to LBJ’s inauguration car, that he was working on. Or maybe he knows someone else in the LA Car Nuts who has a Lincoln or similar vehicle in the beginning stages of restoration, during which any movie-related body modifications count as only minor setbacks.

  2. The RSS feed seems to be broken right now. Maybe with the explosion of RSS readers he’s redoing how his feed works (he’s doing it a very inefficient way).

  3. Jerry, From past experiences resurrecting autos from near death, I have found that they sometimes have filth in the fuel tank and/or the fuel lines to the pump. This is especially true if the car has sat with gas in it for a long while. You can do a couple things:

    1. get some “Stabile” and add it to the tank. Dunno if this will work as it is meant to be added to the gas prior to long term storage. Or..

    2. put the plastic gas can in the trunk (I’d duct tape it too the back of the rear seat or the fender well) and run some rubber gas line to the fuel pump. I’m figuring that it has a mechanical pump hanging off the engine block.

    Option two is what I would do with demo derby cars (although I would have to bolt down the tank to the passenger side rear floor as a Demo derby safety requirement).

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