Wagoneer Follies

18 06 2009

The Wagoneer has seen great progress over the past few days.  It still leaks like a sieve—which is par for the course, really—but it now has a state-of-the-art stereo system.

So. Much. Woodgrain.

So. Much. Woodgrain.

Yeah, that’s right.  I can play CDs.  It also has an iPod hookup and HD Radio (which I can’t really figure out) and four new, non-rotted out speakers.  In case you’re wondering, no, I didn’t blow a bunch of money on audio equipment when the windshield needs to be replaced.  It was actually installed on the last Wagoneer, but wasn’t covered by the insurance.

I spent more time than I rightfully should have fixing the ornery tailgate, which was literally 1/16th of an inch away from fully closing.  A note on the tailgate design: the retractable window thing is really cool, but I completely understand why you don’t see it these days.  It needs constant lubrication to work smoothly, and you always have to worry about somehow breaking that rear window glass.  I’ve heard it costs more than a windshield. I think it would be cool if more SUV’s and vans had a fold-down gate though, because it’s a great place to sit.

Not to mention that the football season tailgate possibilities this opens up are limitless; I’m not sure when the last time that people actually had a tailgate on a real tailgate was.

In an effort to track down all the leaks on the roof, I had to pull down the headliner.  I think I’ll cover it with new foam while it’s down, since it’s got some unsightly tears and holes in it.  But it’s not bowed or sagging, indicating that the dry climate of Montana spared me some very unpleasant reconstructive work.

View from the rear window.  Thre's a lot of screws in that roof.

View from the rear window. Thre's a lot of screws in that roof.

The back of the headliner board had a little smilely face drawn on it:

: )

: )

I like to think that some UAW employee put that there because it was his last day on the job, or he just had a kid or something.  Maybe he just wanted to cheer whoever took the headliner down up.  If that’s the case, mission accomplished line worker dude, and thanks.

Of course, to take anything off, be it the floor carpeting or the headliner, you have to remove about six thousand Phillips screws from everything.  Yeah, they’re easier to replace than cheap plastic clips, and they give the vehicle a certain tough, rugged look, but any repairs lead to carpal tunnel syndrome.

Plus, every hole is a potential source of the water leak that made me take down the headliner in the first place.  AMC/Chrysler must have had a pact with the devil who had a pact with a screw company or something.

But behind every wrist-breaking cloud of Phillips screws, there’s a rainbow or something.

Your hybrid may be green, but I've got the whole rainbow.

Your hybrid may be green, but I've got the whole rainbow.

I’m taking the rest of the night off to make some grilled pizzas, but tomorrow I’ll be back outside with a sprinkler (if it’s not raining again) and some silicone sealant, trying to track down that leak.  Wish me luck.

Oh—looks like I forgot to post this last night.  For the record, the pizzas were awesome.  Also, I haven’t been able to find the leak after sitting in the vehicle with the sprinkler on.  Pesky leaks.




2 responses

19 06 2009

Next project: install a coffee machine INSIDE the Wagoneer. Talk about coffee on the go 😉

19 06 2009
Thom Douglas

I can only hope that I don’t run into too many of these shenanigans upon my purchase of whatever antique vehicle I choose. Hope you find that leak.


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