New Job, New Car

I start my new job this week – which isn’t the one I first applied and received an offer for, it was another that followed up whilst I was waiting.

I like the description of the new job, it’s integrating differing systems and I think I like that best (beats Support easily).

Downsides of a new job is meeting and working with different people. And the fact it’s not work from home is another minor downside.

But it’s better paying and uses more of my skills. A big win.

A new car – I had set about finding a new car, the rust on our car’s firewall is pretty significant, it’s not something I’m able to see an end to, we’d patch it up again and it might last another year or so, but then it’ll rust again.
The current car has formed oil leaks as well (it’s due to the car getting an oil flush once, it probably robbed the necessary gunk that replaced the seals many years ago).

I was originally looking around for a Mitsubishi Lancer but found just one – the bonnet looked like it had a person’s head hit it, and the back was scratched up – we went to inspect it closer, but the car was sold as we were getting there.

Digging around on carsales.com.au two cars caught my eye – a Hyundai Elantra 2003 model, going for a steal at $3300. The seller’s explanation was the body is at 97% due to being a country car.
I figure, well, our roads are probably worse than whatever that’s seen, and the pictures don’t show anything wrong with it – so we go to Sydney and check it out.
It’s body is nothing like the seller says, the minor dents are just as if it had hail hit it in a few spots – nothing wrong with that.

The mechanical side, his done himself apparently, that’s OK if it’s been done correctly. So I pull out the dip stick, when was the last service? About 500KM ago he says – the oil was fairly dark, I wouldn’t have thought 500kM, but I don’t bother with it – oil can be changed – it had oil, so that was fine.

He replaced the shocks and 2 CV joints (country car, fair enough probably needed it), I look at those and they look real good – turns out he got the entire axle cheaper than the joints themselves – that’s the spirit, don’t work too hard.

Next sticking point, Timing Belt – the Beta engines need them changed, being a car from Korea, you wouldn’t want to risk going over the recommended times. So when was it last done?
Car was bought from a first owner, so the log books tell the story there – warranty up, timing belt due – car was sold.

Has he done it ? Nope. Never had to apparently.
So what happens when the timing belt is not done? Oh, it just makes some noise if it starts to snap. Maybe.

What actually happens when the timing belt snaps? Pistons and Valves that are usually kept apart by precision timing are not – so they smash into each other, doing more damage than the car is worth, thus destroying the car.

But since the rest of the car checked out except that, I was suggesting to change the belt as part of the sale with an increased price (being in Sydney, it’s too far for me to arrange the change at a mechanic, and I wasn’t going to risk the trip home with a belt that’s logically, 4 years overdue for changing). He declined – his loss.

We had rang up about the only other car that wasn’t a Daewoo or an Astra (both of those were not going to be bought), and found a 2003 Nissan Pulsar.
The seller described it over the phone earlier that week as being keyed right down the sides, so I decided at the time we wouldn’t bother with that.

But on the weekend, we were already down in Sydney, so we’d have a look and see what it was, and perhaps it might buff out if it wasn’t too bad with the damage he described (having previously seen the Hyundai’s ‘damage’).

I go have a look and there is no damage down the side, his keyed down the sides was just two very minor scratches, close together on the front, which haven’t even dug into the paint.

That was all that was wrong with it aside from the black paint showing signs as being washed with a bad brush (can’t help car parks and carwashes).
I had a look for any signs of rust as well, and couldn’t see anything, there was leaves on it, but his description of what happened matches – the car has been parked since he has a work car – under a tree. Autumn having just past, it makes sense that there’d be leaves there – nothing a good clean won’t fix.

It had less ks on the clock, and everything else about the car seemed fine (though the shifter seemed very close together compared to my current car – my current car has longer spacing between the gears where as the Pulsar was very close – nothing wrong with it, just different).

It’s got a Timing Chain as well – no timing belt to replace makes up for my inability to haggle on price.
So I’ve bought it!

Wasted time on our current Hyundai Sonata? Nah, I’ll probably strip out the useful and not so useful bits out of it and then decide what to do with what’s left.
I already have someone wanting it’s tow bar.

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2 Responses to New Job, New Car

  1. criten says:

    New job eh? Congrats – hope it keeps you more interested. JL said you’re at Newcastle Uni now?

  2. He must be a tad more senile than I previously thought…

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