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why is there so many basic mechanic questions

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by eugene vik, Dec 7, 2012.

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  1. gary terhaar
    Joined: Jul 23, 2007
    Posts: 641

    gary terhaar
    from oakdale ny

    To me,this explains it best.

    I worked at a chrysler dealer for 20 plus years as a forman and more often than not the "do it for me" was the core intention of the question. This equates to plain lazy.

    When i first started they would send me to factory school to learn systems involved for vehicles sold at the time. There were two types of teachers there ,ones who gave you solutions for the symtom"if it does this ,change that" and this is what i see more often as the answer people are looking for. The preverbial magic bullet.

    The other teacher would explain the theory of HOW it worked so when it did something wrong you could figure out what it was not doing correctly.

    This is what people do not ask ,"How does that work". I read somewhere in one post how the guy was afraid to tear into a 97 for fear of screwing up his vintage part.

    The internet is a great place for information as well as books the person using either has to determan what they need .

    The caburator is a simple device that pretty much hasnt changed Three circuits and the venturi theory. Yes it is old and should be treated with care but dammit dig in someone else could do it,so can you.

    The other thing i learned over the years is if it worked once before you can make it work again,just figure out how it works and proceed.

    So to the op,no there are no stupid questions, at least in my eyes.the stupid ones are the ones asking the same questions over and over and not learning to find the answers.
  2. Sheep Dip
    Joined: Dec 29, 2010
    Posts: 1,572

    Sheep Dip
    from Central Ca

    Times are changing, not just in cars or hot rods but in world and the way we learn is to ask the question. Kids today do not have to figure things out because the calculator, computer or iPhone has the quick and easy answer. Us older guy's had to build or repair a lot of things that today are easily ordered and purchased with your iPhone. Hell they do not even do that much body work in general collision work any more they simply replace the broke or bent item. But in defense of the younger ones, my 7 year old grand daughters know more about this computer than I ever will so I am the one asking all the dumb questions to them. I think it just depends on what side of technology your on or were schooled in.

    Attached Files:

  3. I am 50 years old and I can't say that there are many 7 year olds who know more about a computer than me (I am not an engineer or expert--just a user). That average seven year old stuff is a myth. By the time the average seven year old was born, I had been on line on the internet for ten years.
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2012
  4. fastlane666
    Joined: Sep 10, 2012
    Posts: 45


    there is definitly a shortage of skill craftsmen out there. i have a theory that a lot of unemployed people have white collar trades if yer an over educated white collar person yer job can be done on the internet just as easy in china as it can in silicon valley. and if yer under educated or just plain lazy well wellfare is just easier. all the skilled craftsmen are working and are earning well for themselves and thier families.
  5. fastlane666
    Joined: Sep 10, 2012
    Posts: 45


    i've also noticed that young men coming into the trades no longer do a proper appreticeship. When i started in a bodyshop at age 10 i fed the dogs cleaned the toilets,swept the floors, and pumped gas. when all that was done if i was lucky i got to wetsand something and it was something small that i couldn't screw up. young men do not do this anymore. also again schools are crushing shop classes, or just dumping lazy kids there because no one wants to deal with them. the trades in this country are in trouble because the gene pool is shrinking.
  6. 53 COE
    Joined: Oct 8, 2011
    Posts: 688

    53 COE
    from PNW

  7. oldnuts
    Joined: Jan 14, 2009
    Posts: 355

    from nebraska

    i grew up a broke teenager with a 1973 ford torino. i had no choice but to fix my own car when it broke so the "basic mechanical questions" that i asked are what got me hooked on fixing old cars. i wasnt raised working on old cars so i am still blind to alot of mechanical stuff. im very thankful for the people that are willing to help the new guys in this hobby learn what they need to learn
  8. burnout2614
    Joined: Sep 21, 2009
    Posts: 612


    I see Gene is ASE triple master tech. Those are the hardest tests I have ever encountered. peace
  9. The beauty of this thread is it may have gotten a little off track but there are a lot of intelligent thought provoking post.

    And as for the supposedly myth of a 7 year old being pretty smart with computers,,heck my 4 year old granddaughter has been amazing me with her mastery for the last year. HRP
  10. farmergal
    Joined: Nov 28, 2010
    Posts: 2,074

    from somewhere

    Some of us come here because we can't afford to mutilate a car 4 times over because A) these cars are not $100.00 and on every street corner anymore B) funds don't allow us to screw things up multiple times just to get it right and most importantly C) Why wouldn't we want to do it right the first time?

    The HAMB is a library of hot rodding and people come here to learn. We have purchased well over hundreds of dollars in books on metal working and building hot rods and guess what?? The things we have questions on are not in any of the books. Lots of time is spent reading posts here on the HAMB and sometimes we don't have endless hours of retirement to sit on the internet and surf through the horrible tool that the "search function" is on this forum for one little piece of info that was posted 8 years ago in 1 post on a 30 page thread. Poeoplke have different ways of doing things and it's often much easier to just post and ask and get answers right away than to literally spend hours searching for one post posted years ago that might contribute some helpful information.

    I love that this forum has helped out on our cars. We spend lots of time doing trial and error to try and figure things out on our own but sometimes the results just are not going in our favor...and thats where the helpful hands of the HAMB comes in.

    I posted on here about a month ago looking for wiring help on a 1950 PLymouth and within minutes someone had posted pictures from a book of the complete wiring of the car. Does it get any better than that? To all fellow HAMBers who have lent a helping hand and word along the way; we are forever greatful for all of your help!!
  11. Ayers Garage
    Joined: Nov 28, 2002
    Posts: 1,382

    Ayers Garage

    I never mind the ignorance, it's the laziness that get's under my skin. I recently got in bad on another forum board (older Chevy trucks) because I got a bit sharp with someone asking what size his truck's sway bar would be so he could order new bushings. I told him to measure it since that era trucks had three different sized units. He got mad and asked if someone would just tell him the answer. I was trying to keep the guy from ordering some stuff that wouldn't fit, but he just couldn't be bothered to lay down under his front bumper and measure the thing. Then when he finally admitted defeat and agreed to measure the thing himself, he couldn't figure out how to do it. It's a big metal bar. We had other guys telling him to go buy a dial caliper to measure it. When I recomended using a crescent wrench and a ruler, the forum mod gave me a tune up.

    I don't mind helping someone learn, but I won't do it for them. Very few problems are that complicated if you'll actually go outside and look at it and think about it.
  12. Actual questions here:

    "What is your favourite hot rod sticker?"
    "does your car have Feng Shui ?"
    "Do old cars/trucks have souls?"
    "I am wondering has anyone compiled
    a list of "Signatures?"

    "Has anyone EVER found a way to convert
    an overhead into a flathead?

    "Lets see your hot rod jack-o-lanterns!"
    " Toys of Christmas past.... What toys do you guys remember...."
    ""How do I clean hazie windows?"

  13. Amen.

    "My car doesn't handle right.
    Please speculate what is wrong with it,
    while I ignore your requests
    for pics and technical details."
  14. I went to a friends house to pick up a car. there was another car in the driveway, in the way.. I asked his 17-18 yo son if he had the keys, to move it,, he came out of the house with keys in hand and said, I don't know if these are the keys.? I look and show him the old Ford key.. ok, he says, then says, I don't know if the battery is good.!! doh, get in and put the key in the ignition and try it !!!! brain dead, frustrating.. I agree, this generation of kids, will soon be running our counties ???????? so many, know so little, it is scary...imo
  15. :d:d:d:d:d
  16. Downtime
    Joined: Jul 18, 2012
    Posts: 35


    if you think answering questions on a classic car forum is a highly annoying thing to do, try working in the IT field for a living, I can't even tell you the hundreds of times I've been asked the classic "how can i post this picture online?" you know what I do in that case? Help them out. You never know what they may know that you don't.

    I constantly read this forum, but almost never post because I know i have mostly nothing useful to add as far as car mechanics is concerned. But I do want to learn so I will continue to read, and harass the local car guys who i am beginning to meet.

    But you should be thankful there are a few of us younger guys that are interested in this hobby you have lived your entire life. Because if we weren't, what would happen to your knowledge and skills, much less the cars we all love so much?
  17. Zombie Hot Rod
    Joined: Oct 22, 2006
    Posts: 2,451

    Zombie Hot Rod
    from New York

    This is the same thing our great grand Parents said about our grand parent's generation. . . then our grand parents said it about our parents. . . then our parents said it about us. . . and now we're saying it about our kids. . . and our kids will say it about their kids, and so on.

    Everyone think that the time in which they grew up was the best, and "kids today" know nothing. . . that is, until your computer stops working, lol.

    It's all relevant to the world that's currently around you.
  18. Edelbroke
    Joined: Dec 12, 2008
    Posts: 767


    This is a useless thread as any i've seen in a long time. And everyday its on the 1st page. What the hell... BTT!
  19. coopsdaddy
    Joined: Mar 7, 2007
    Posts: 884

    from oklahoma

    No shit , I hope this is the last time it's bumped
  20. hardluckharv
    Joined: Oct 31, 2012
    Posts: 31

    from edmond,ok

    As a younger man i tore up a lot of stuff by not knowing what I'm doing. Now older and wiser I like to get some basic info before I tear into things that are 60 plus years old and hard to find parts for, when you tear them up by not knowing what you are doing, so if i spend a few hour researching on how to install bear claw latches in my 49 shoebox and learn a few things I am more then happy to pass it along to the next guy so he doesn't have to spend hours searching build threads on the same project.

    When i start and complete this project ill post the install tech to help the next guy. So he doesn't destroy the lock on his sweetheart like i did on the first door latch i took apart. which should be a basic task but with out info I screw things up.
    At my job were I rebuild and wire radial engines from W.W.2 we have a ton of manuals if you dont research before you start on an engine that you are unfamiliar with you could destroy something not only is rare but played a part in changing world history.
  21. Shane Spencer
    Joined: Oct 3, 2009
    Posts: 2,157

    Shane Spencer

    some of us younger dudes just have never been shown how to do the simple shit on old cars. not that we cant, just we have never been taught and have never seen the old parts. and the people who do know arent around as much anymore. im not reaming older guys asses because they dont know how to setup tune maps on newer cars or mess with computer software. maybe take the time to explain the simple thing and teach someone instead of bitch about it.
  22. Cantstop
    Joined: Jul 11, 2005
    Posts: 236


    I think most of our frustration comes from,to put in our fathers (and for some of us our Grandfathers) terms, lack of respect. Newbies pop up on here and have a question to ask, and when it not a simple yes or no they think your just an a-hole not wanting to help. Unfortunately most of them go away before realizing that there question wasn't as simple as they thought. And some of us instead of flaming them maybe should stop and instead say "look I'm trying to help answer your question, BUT 1) its not that simple 2) I'm trying to direct you in a way that you wont f-it up and 3) If you don't want to learn about doing it right the first time, you will after you do it your way first. My post count doesn't really reflect the amount of time I have spent on here with you guys, usually a couple of hours a day, every day. I've learned tons, more than I thought you could teach me. So we are not all lost causes.
    A wise man once said "give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, he'll eat for a lifetime." Sometimes we just just need to tell the OP of a thread "shut up and listen"
  23. Crystal Blue
    Joined: Nov 18, 2008
    Posts: 609

    Crystal Blue

    I did a search. "Stupid Questions" And this thread came up :D

    Seriously ! :eek: Bwahahahaha
  24. flynbrian48
    Joined: Mar 10, 2008
    Posts: 6,192


    A better question might be "Why are so many HAMB members grumpy, semi-illiterate old men?"

  25. I've been working on cars since age 12, so my math skills tell me this is forty years. I'm willing to work on damn near anything...except transmissions. I'll take one out, install one, swap a clutch, but I won't jack with a transmission. I don't know why. I can diagnose a trans problem pretty well, but diving into one does not at all interest me. So, as far as I care, transmission work will nearly always get farmed out. Why? Because I don't feel like messing with them.

    The comments about modern schooling and the emphasis on "computer skills" and not mechanical skills, is absolutely true. That, and kids not being taught critical thinking skills! They're taught to pass a statewide standardized test. Facts and skills be damned! I see the results of this every single day.
  26. I don't care who you are....that's some funny stuff right there.
  27. Bad Eye Bill
    Joined: Sep 1, 2010
    Posts: 841

    Bad Eye Bill
    from NB Canada

    Well said. I've been trying to think of a short and concise way to make this point as I've been reading this thread.

    Now I don't have to, you've done it, good post.
  28. Read the f---ing manual!
    Like I did.
  29. 48fordor
    Joined: Jan 16, 2009
    Posts: 137

    from York, PA

    I am now of the age where I encounter people both older and younger than me in the workplace and as contractors. I have found that the condition described above as "deadbeat" knows no age restriction. I've seen really sharp mechanics/techs/contractors who were young, and others who were not. I've seen deadbeats of all ages as well.

    Good logical troubleshooting skills are more of a you have it or you don't kind of thing. You can teach the tech part, but it is hard to teach the logical thinking to use the tech. Many HAMBers just "get it" when looking at a mechanical system. Remember that others don't see it they way you do.

    And sometimes you just get stumped on something new. First time I saw an intermittent glass fuse I couldn't believe that such a thing could exist - how could a fuse be bad, then good, then bad again? Dad just laughed and said sure they can do that, he'd seen it before. . .

    Just to throw in something useful, here is a link to a Dyke's automotive encyclopedia from 1920:
    PDF or EPUB so you can take your Kindle to the garage.
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