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stupid things we did as teenagers while working on our cars

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by southern thunder, May 3, 2012.

  1. southern thunder
    Joined: Mar 14, 2012
    Posts: 226

    southern thunder

    no disrespect to the young guns on here, but I did a few stupid things around age 15-16. I had a 55 chevy. with a 283-four speed. I needed to work on the rear end, i used a bumper jack that went with some other car to jack it up. no jack stands, no blocks, nothing. i crawled under it did what i needed to do. ( forgot what it was now ) crawled out and walked over to my tool chest, as i turned to go back to the car, it slowly rolled backwards, and fell off the jack , i didn''t even cross my mind that could happen. needless to say, i would have been mashed like a bug, but I was 16, my mindset at that time was i can''t get hurt to bad, and i damm sure couldn't be killed. GOD was watching over me !!!!
  2. scrap metal 48
    Joined: Sep 6, 2009
    Posts: 6,078

    scrap metal 48

    I don't know about GOD but I'm 65 and still do stupid things when working on my cars......
  3. "T'RANTULA"
    Joined: Aug 6, 2011
    Posts: 661

    from Ohio

    Im 20 and did the same thing with my 55 a few years back!!! I was changing the oil in the rearend. Always use a jack stand now!!!
  4. I used ramps, but I recruited a ten year old to drive the car onto them ( a Meyers Manx) while I stood crouched in front of the ramps to hold them to keep them from moving. Yeah, no potential problem there.
    I was into VW's so I could push them by myself, then jump in to start 'em. Not the best idea. I also poured gas in carbs from a jar to prime, later I found out about all the people that have been horrible burned that way.
    The list is endless.......

  5. Blackmaria60
    Joined: Apr 30, 2008
    Posts: 532


    1986, I was 17. My OT '68 Firebird had had a vinyl top before I got it. It was painted "resale" red with a black top and the stainless that wrapped from the C-pillar, around the backlight to the other C-pillar I decided was not needed anymore. I folded it up and thru it in the trash.
    May or may not be a big deal but I'm OCD/anal retentive now, and thinking of it makes me sick!
  6. Yep, without a doubt, the most stupid thing I ever did was work on a wheel bearing using only a bumper jack. SOB fell off the jack. But failure is the best way to learn if it doesn't kill you and I have never, ever done that stupid act again! Its amazing how immortal we thought we were as kids..or, as you say, just plain stupid.
  7. Rudebaker
    Joined: Sep 14, 2007
    Posts: 1,598

    from Illinois

    I used a bumper jack to lift a '63 Impala so I could work underneath but I was "smarter" than you guys. :rolleyes: I blocked it up....... on cinder blocks. :eek: Wanting to be safe I rocked the car to make sure they were solid then slid under it and went to work. I heard a popping noise, felt something hit my face and noticed a little puff of dust near one of the blocks. I realized what was happening right away. I grabbed the rear bumper and pulled like my life depended on it!!! Got everything clear but my legs from the knees down. BOTH blocks let go at the same time and down it came. I was lucky, it still had the wheels on it so the bumper smacked my knees a good one and then it went back up. If that had been my head or chest under the bumper......:( I limped real funny for a few days but I lived. The next day I went and bought a good pair of jackstands off one of the tool trucks. That was 35 years ago this month, I still have those same jackstands, I use them religiously and everytime I do I think back to that Summer day. My guardian angel earned his pay and then some over the years so I try to take it easy on him these days. He's no kid anymore you know. ;)
  8. yetiskustoms
    Joined: May 22, 2009
    Posts: 1,932


    You dont have to be a teenager to do stupid things!
  9. '55 Ford two bumper jacks to change the rear end. It came down with me under it.

    The soon to be Mrs beaner and my mom had gone shopping. I had an old dog that had dug a bed under there and as it came down I rolled into the depression. It didn't squash me but it pinned me until they came back and got some help to get it off of me.

    Some other equally as funny things happened back then but no time now to share.
  10. stewdecky
    Joined: Apr 30, 2010
    Posts: 100

    from Kansas

    Not as drastic but pretty funny. My brother had just bought a 72 chevy cheyene pickup and we were going home after school, on the way home there was a piece of chrome trim in the middle of the road and my brother just ran over it being in high school and such. Later he found out he had lost a piece of passenger door trim and what he had run over and ruined was his lost piece. A few cuss words... and we laugh about it to this day.
  11. tiredford
    Joined: Apr 6, 2009
    Posts: 561

    from Mo.

    I was hurrying to finish the wheel bearings on my 55 Chevy, working in the driveway with a drop light. I was leaving on a trip from Kansas City to Galvaston the next morning. I was on the return trip when a slight sceeking noise started in the left front wheel. Note to self: check that when you get home. I forgot to put the cotter pin in.:eek: ...Drove a thousand miles the nut only backed off a little bit.
  12. I worked at a repair shop when i first got my license (16) after school. I did ALL KINDS of stupid shit. I was a delivery driver and the boss had me doing oil changes and lube jobs. One time he told me to change the oil on this mid 80's Honda Accord. I had never jacked up a small car like that...didn't see a crossmember or frame to put the floor I put it under the oil pan! I started jacking it up and watched the oil pan start pushing up into itself!!! I stopped, let it down and THEN asked aother guy how to do it.

    I did all kinds of stupid shit. They had me do a trans service. I took every bolt out of the pan, then grabbed a screw driver ad pried the pan off, puking 6 or so quarts of dirty tranny fluid all over myself and the ground.

    Another time I needed to drive a newer Bronco up on the drive-on lift. Usually a guy would guide me, but he was tied up so I did it myself. Yup, passanger side slipped off the ramps right in from of the customer. Didn't do anything, but scared the shit outta me!

    Ol Ron never did fire me, but I probably cost him more then I was worth some times :D
    I did learn a lot though, I look back now and think "man, I was a DUMBASS!!!"
  13. WornOutOldMan
    Joined: Nov 18, 2010
    Posts: 66

    from So Cal

    I'd done so much dumb stuff between the age of 12 (first car) and 18 (turned pro tech/in my own mind) that it would take pages to fill. That's how we learn. Thank God I/we didn't get too badly hurt or killed.
  14. Had 64 Impala SS jacked up on jackstands outside of a Union 76 station changing the 3rd member.I didn't block the wheels in front.As I lay with my chest under the axle housing,I had the 3rd member lifted up and was sliding it onto the studs and it's heavy so I was pushing hard.Well the car started to roll back gently and the stands tipped at an angle and my knees were up against the bottom of the trunk hard enough to keep the car from rolling any further but I was trapped! I yelled for help and some guys came running out of the station and pushed the car forward and the stands tilted back up and I set a friggin record for getting out from under that damn car! Whew! man even jackstands can be a killer if ya don't block the car from rolling...I was 17,how did I live to be 51?

    Attached Files:

  15. 45_70Sharps
    Joined: May 19, 2010
    Posts: 331


    I've been guilty of working under a car on a jack, and of the concrete block also.

    I have no idea how I survived being so young and stupid!
  16. RAYSIN
    Joined: Mar 27, 2011
    Posts: 8

    from the groove

    I was trying to sort out an intermittant no start issue on a newly aquired 69 nova SS. at one point i left it in drive and rolled the car forward and moments later tried starting it, it fired up in gear and took off out my garage, i dove in through the drivers window to shut it off before it ran over my dog and into my wife's eldo in the driveway as the garage door track lock catch snags my sweat pants and pulls them down to my knees, got it stopped inches from my wife's car... even my dog looked at me like a moron. a week or so later i discovered a wire from the starter to the ignition had about 5 crimp connectors on it lol
  17. 231ramona
    Joined: Feb 7, 2007
    Posts: 274


    I think back on some things that involve compressed springs, torches, and gasoline that still scares me 40 years later. Also, a high speed grinder and a loose t-shirt.
    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p> </o:p>
  18. RDP
    Joined: Dec 3, 2010
    Posts: 242

    from Kansas

    I once used a screw driver to roll a fan belt on. But when I bumped the starter I forgot to unplug the hot wire to the distributer. Motor fired up and screw driver went flying.
  19. Chopped 66 Bug
    Joined: Apr 5, 2012
    Posts: 214

    Chopped 66 Bug

    Don't know if this qualifies but I thought it would be cool to have one of those real small diameter steering wheels in my ride. So I purchased one and the adapter and installed it. Man it looked sweet! Now time to take it for a drive. First right turn out of the alley and I oversteered and went through the neighbors yard!

    Same car months later in a road race to get back to Dallas fro mLake Lavon I hit a large pot hole on the short cut farm to market road I was using. Broke the crankshaft on the main bearing clean intoo! I made it back to the house at around 25mph, sounded like a broken washing machine but made it , lost the race though
  20. Fleetside
    Joined: Mar 15, 2009
    Posts: 93


    When I was 16 I went to change my oil, it wasn't until I poured in 5 quarts that I realized I hadn't put the drain plug back in. It was a mess.
  21. shadams
    Joined: Mar 16, 2011
    Posts: 1,492


    I had a Mazda pickup in high school and had heard that you could lower it buy adjusting the torsion bars. I loosend the bolts and sure enough, it came down pretty low. Rode like shit and the ends of the torsion bars were now clocked in a way where they hung down real low and I eventually broke the end of one off causing the torsion bar to fall out. So I took both of them out, who needs those anyway.

    Eventually I got nitro drop shocks and it rode much better (on the bump stops). One day I blew up the motor and we shoehorned a 5.0 ford engine it in by beating the firewall until it cleared, and used pieces of old tire and square tubing as motor and trans mounts. So now we have double the weight on the bump stops and shocks and someone finally realized there were no torsion bars. I got a set from the junk yard and put them in the way they came out, tightend the shit out of them and said " hey, it's still low, cool." Of course, the reason it was still low is the drop shocks were only so long, so now it had absolutely no front suspension travel.

    I used to drive without my hood on when it was hot out so the truck didnt overheat, and one time we hit a pot hole and the battery shot up out of the engine compartment(you didnt think I would have it bolted down did you) until the battery cables stopped it and it came down sideways.

    Dudes, I could go on and on all day long, just from that one truck.....did I tell you about my undercoating bed-liner? Oh yea, it looked great when it was hot outside!! No rust though!

    Sometime I wonder how I survived driving that truck....
  22. Black_Sheep
    Joined: May 22, 2010
    Posts: 1,427


    While doing a tranny swap with the car up on concrete blocks I heard a sound like something cracking and bailed out from under the car just before a block crumbled and the car dropped.

    I stilll do stupid shit once in a while. The last serious f-up was when I was putting my 69 GTX back together. For whatever reason I hadn't connected the rear brakes and the car was backed in the garage and sitting on a set of car dollies. I had just put the transmissionn in and started it up so I could top off the fluid level. Without thinking I put my foot on the brake and dropped it into drive. Since there was no rear brakes the back wheels turned and launched the dollies into the back wall of the garage. To add insult to injury, the car shot out of the garage with the front wheels still on the dollies so I couldn't stop or steer the car. By sheer dumb luck it narrowly missed the concrete filled pole for the kids basketball hoop and a couple of garbage cans before I could jam it in park.

    On the same car, I installed some Mopar super stock rear springs and the drivers side shackle overcentered when I set it down. No big deal I thought, I jacked the body up to take most of the pressure off the spring then crawled underneath to give it a tug and get the shackle pointing the right way. When I yanked on the spring the leaves that had been seperated snapped back together and tore the flesh from the meaty part of my right hand just below the finger joints. The pain was incredible...
  23. 45_70Sharps
    Joined: May 19, 2010
    Posts: 331


    OK, I'm not sure who has the best story for dumb things but this is by far the funniest story so far!!

    I can just picture it all!
  24. shadams
    Joined: Mar 16, 2011
    Posts: 1,492


    I was just telling my boss this story. Can you imagine seeing your neighbor come roaring out of the garage on dollies with eyes as big as saucers!! I bet he was trying to stop it with his feet for a bit too!
  25. Black_Sheep
    Joined: May 22, 2010
    Posts: 1,427


    It wasn't too funny at the time but in retrospect it was hilarious...
  26. SaltCoupe
    Joined: Jun 10, 2010
    Posts: 2,376

    from Indiana

    I was 18 and did something similar while working on my 55...the bumper jack let go while i was changeing a tire. I had left the tire tool in the jack and it shot the tool about 30 feet in the air, came down and stuck in the ground right beside me. I did'nt make that mistake twice!
  27. 62RagtopNova
    Joined: Feb 5, 2012
    Posts: 116


    My buddiy's dad was a certified hillbilly in California. He bought cars at police auctions and we used to race them around at night. He had a '67 Dodge police special with the 383 hipo motor. It was thrashed but still had some beans.

    My buddy fancied himself quite the mechanic (he wasn't) and one day we were in his carport checking the fluids. He started the car and left the door open he wanted to check the auto trans fluid and asked me to reach in and put the car in neutral. I did but the linkage was so tired it went right to drive and the car lurched ahead into the wall (my bad). He screamed and reached in to put the car in park but went to reverse and the car lurched back smashing the open door back into the carport support pole bending hinges and sheet metal (his bad).

    After a trip to the junk yard and a back yard bondo fest the price for repair came to a whopping $250. I offered to split the cost but he blamed me for the whole incident and so we were no longer buddy's.
  28. This could have been drastic but it was pretty funny.

    A friend that I used to race with has a son. When he was about the right age to get his first car he got himself an older full size blazer. Nothing major radical but lifted slightly and tallish tires. I guess it lost a rear U joint and he decided to change it.

    So he rolls under and procedes to take the rear drive shaft loose. I just happened into the driveway in time to see him drop the driveshaft and the truck started rolling off with him. He had hold of the rear axle with one hand and the driveshaft with the other as it was dragging him along. He was trying to reconnect the drive shaft. I got over there and flung the door open and put my hand on the brake peddle. I was laughing so hard, and his dad had come out of the house, he was laughing so hard he was crying. We finally got some chocks on the tires, and dragged the kid out from under it.

    I'll bet he never does anything without wheel chocks ever again.
  29. 56sedandelivery
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 6,695

    Member Emeritus

    NOT me, but my younger brother, and this was many years ago. He has a 55 Chevrolet, 4 door, model 210, six with a 3-speed, and it needs rear tires. He got some old truck tires from a friend of his, and they get them mounted at a gas station. Come's home and installs them, and he gets me to show me how they look (rediculous, and sound terrible when rolling). I notice he has ALL the lug nuts on backwards, taper facing out, and ask him why. He, "thought they looked better that way" (?). Same car, he has a howling rear axle bearing, but with limited tools, he can't get the axle out. I tell him to use a truckers chain from the garage; just bolt it to one of the axle studs, and whip it. He's having no luck, so I give it a hard whip, comes loose, whacks me in the back of the head, and knocks me out. Got to tighten the lug nut brother! This is the same brother, that the only time he has been down a dragstrip, was in the trunk of a car being used as weight for traction (that's a whole 'nuther story). What's the saying? Nothing's fool proof to a sufficiently talented fool, my bother qualifies. Butch/56sedandelivery.
  30. shoveled71
    Joined: Jun 3, 2007
    Posts: 159


    Back in high school my buddy had a 55 Ford p/u,we pulled the seat out to get it reupholstered. Couldnt wait the few days to get it back so we put a couple of those green and white webbed alumininum lawn chairs that were popular back in the 70s in it, we were riding around and went around a curve and he downshifted and gassed it, both chairs collapsed and we both ended up in the floor,the truck slid into a telephone pole and totaled it out, we were unhurt except for our pride...

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