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Falcon Progress: Complete

September, 2006: It's true. The little red Falcon is a running, humming machine. It ain't perfect, but it's operational. It's been freakin' ages since I updated. I'd come up with an excuse, but, man, I ain't got one. No matter, the little baby's been in my mind and I have continued to work on her.

First, the fuel pump started dripping everywhere. New pumps are dirt cheap, so even though the problem was the gasket, you might as well replace the pump so long as you have it off. I did. And then I stopped passing out while I drove from gas fumes.

So, then, one of the pistons that pushes the convertible top up started leaking. And that thing is full of transmission fluid, which is sort of nasty. $135 later, and a shitload of mess from refilling the fluids, I got a new cylinder in and the top is up and down just like before.

So, now I got a sweet convertible just in time for winter. If I were to do anything else to her, it would be new paint, repairing the rust in the quarters and new interior. But I don't know if I will.

Crap. Check out the photos. Oh, and don't send money unless you just feel like it, because I don't need it for the car anymore.


October 23: A new fuel sending unit is installed and now the gas gauge actually works. Man is it a rattly car, though. Not because it's old, but because it's its time's Geo Metro. Still, it's cool. Hey, are you missing a weddin ring? I found one in the gas tank when I siphoned it off prior to installing the new sending unit. Oh, and get this. The little sock that fits over the tip of the unit to filter crud out before it gets into the fuel line? It's a $2 part, but Ford dealerships charge $20 for it. What a fucking scam. that's like 10 taps at the Tavern. It's almost worth it to fuck up the fuel lines.

September 23: The Falcon is a registered, licensed car in Colorado. A tune up, new vacuum advance and some tweaking and it passed smog and is roadworthy. Well, almost. I need to drain and refill the differential, replace the exhaust, get a new window seal for the driver side. But, I sold a bunch of Galaxie stuff and am doing okay for money. Send if you want, but we're all in good shape. New pictures soon!

August 14: The top is on! It ain't beautiful, but I bet it keeps water out. Anyway, the top is all in place, and I even put in new weatherstripping on the rails. I just need to install the well liner, rear window and new pump. Yep, I finally bought a pump that works. the two before were both so corroded inside they wouldn't turn. I know because I opened them up, which was really stupid since they are full of transmission fluid (that's what they use) and it poured out everywhere. Anyway, the window and well-liner will take an hour, then the pump will take some time to get installed and properly grounded. But after that, I'm hitting the road. Oh yeah, anyone that knows how to unjam a stuck door, e-mail me, please. The passenger door won't budge. I think it's because I spilled a Mickey's Big Mouth down there.

June 26: I wish I had some exciting update, but I don't. I'm still trying to get the wrinkles out of the top. I can't figure out how, though. And I need to fix the pump still. Money is there. Desire is there. But I'm a moron. So it's gonna take me some time to figure this out.

May 29: So the convertible top pump I bought is a dog. It doesn't work. New ones are $220, but there's a guy in Hemmings who sells working ones for $69. I think I'll go that way. The top is going on very slowly, but I have the rear plastic in. What I need to buy now is new weatherstripping. That's the rubber that seals the windows to the top frame so water doesn't seep into the car.I think that's about $280. don't worry, I budgeted for it.

The back window is installed.

The pump that powers the top up and down sits behind the rear seat.

Yeah, so I have some wrinkles to work out of the top.

May 21: No new progress. I'm waiting for some new parts. I did buy a convertible top pump on Ebay for $22. They cost $220 new. I hope this one works.

May 14: I got the old top off. That was pretty easy. so far, it looks like putting a new one on ain't nearly as simply. First, all these little shards of rust keep getting embedded under my nails. Second is that just because you think you know better than the top manufacturers the dimensions of your car, you don't. So, don't start cutting. Man, I fucked up. But I will keep going. as soon as I order another top. And figure out how to keep this thing from rusting into a heap of bolts.

May 2: So, I was smart enough to take the rotten old convertible top off just in time for the snow and rain. I can bucket out the water that's collecting in it. It wasn't hard to remove the old top. Mostly, that's because it was half off already. Anyway, I'm getting closer to a new top. I owe you new photos, so I'll take some this week, once everything dries off.


Thank you to those who contributed and helped out. You know who you are. Seriously, think about it, you bought me a damn car. That's pretty fucking cool.

For those of you following my journey toward a Lincoln Continental convertible, you probably wondered why the hell the thermometer wasn't moving. It turns out my interest in Continentals coincided with that of every little fucking punk and rap star. The price of those things was going up faster than I was saving money.

So, I followed the guiding principle of my life: Shoot for the stars, but settle for a streetlight. It's what the moths do. Thanks to your generous contributions, I got a sweet deal on a 1964 Ford Falcon Continental Convertible. I mean, this beauty is practically driveable. The good news is all it needs is a new top, some body work and paint. The bad news is that, yes, I'm not done asking for money because now I'm tapped out and I can't drive the thing without a top that doesn't leak and some engine work.

This beautiful Ford Falcon is a testament to the fact that Internet begging works. It takes a big, proud man to be beg for pity. So, why stop now?

Here's the schedule: I get the car delivered some time in March and I will put up pictures of it. I will set up a new thermometer for the $1000 I need to raise for the top and top motor. And then I will document my progress for any of you who care. Once it's driveable, I'll take it past all the people who made fun of me in high school. The ones I remember and whom I am stalking, anyway. I'll post photos of that, too. And my dog, and Arvada and the Tavern, etc. I'll make road trips and write 'em up.

Contribute to my fund and know that your money is going to a material, concrete cause. It's not like giving money to NPR where they keep interrupting themselves to ask for more. You're giving to say thanks or because you feel sorry for me. All I can promise is I won't spend the money on anything but the Falcon.

To those who chipped in, thanks again. To those of you who haven't contributed: that's cool with me. It ain't mandatory, and thanks for reading. To those of you who didn't contribute but felt compelled to e-mail and say I was lying and the money wasn't going to a car: fuck you. Every fucking penny went to the Falcon, plus some of my own money to finish out the deal. Well, not exactly my money, but not yours either, so don't ask questions.

To anyone who contributed and is disappointed I bought a Falcon instead of a Lincoln: don't be. You should know by now that failure and I come as a package deal. You invested in me and failure and got some of both.

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