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Xist 09-06-2020 03:55 AM

Stranded in Tucson
 
I have been chatting with women all over the world through my preferred dating app. It always wants me to pay to see who allegedly likes me, but if I say yes to everyone worldwide, there is nobody left!

I have had some interesting conversations with truly lovely ladies, but nobody local.

Last week I was trying to fix my laptop at 2am and a beautiful girl was up late watching Netflix. We had chatted for a couple of months but never as much as that night.

We ended staying up all night chatting.

Somewhere in there she asked if I actually wanted to meet her or I was just passing time. I told her that I did not have any intention of dating during a global pandemic, but I felt that I should see if we got along in-person before spending additional months chatting. I packed up my car and headed out of town last Saturday to meet her, but as soon as I got on the highway there was a sign saying the road was closed due to a forest fire.

I was better prepared this week and left earlier. I checked fluids and stuff, filled up, and set course for destiny!

I had a check engine light an hour from Tucson, seemingly in the middle of nowhere, and couldn't get my code reader to connect. When I did read the code (P1381) it was completely unclear how to fix it and I couldn't find a mechanic still open. O'Reilly's had a database showing that 250/402 mechanics fixed that problem by replacing the distributor--the one that I installed last year. Apparently a sensor is bad, but you cannot buy it separately.

They happened to be the only location in Tucson with a distributor, but my card was declined. I called my bank, waited ten minutes, and then saw a text asking to confirm my purchases that day. I confirmed and was able to buy it.

When I installed the distributor my car wouldn't start. I had shown the young lady how it was lined up and rotated the new one to match, but I figured that I must have had it wrong. I went to rotate it and it was broken!

I tried to buy more tools to fix it, but my card was declined. I called again, but it never seemed like they would answer.

I cannot leave town. I do not have anywhere to stay. I cannot buy tools to fix my car, pay a mechanic, or rent a hotel room or a car to drive home.

I can not even buy dinner!

nemo 09-06-2020 07:12 AM

After this is over may it turn out to be a great story. It is hard when you are somewhere with no immediate support network. In the past we have been able to buy items remotely when my son has had vehicle issues, can your mom help? Sometimes they would take the cc over the phone other times order online for pick up.

You have a way of impressing the girls. :)

Xist 09-06-2020 09:11 AM

1 Attachment(s)
I also have a way of breaking stuff! :D

https://ecomodder.com/forum/attachme...1&d=1599394133

How did I manage this?!

Mom offered to send me money through some telegraph company. The young lady offered to pay for tools and did get me a hotel room. I was hoping that I could still use my card on-line, but she reserved me a room before I could find out.

Unless I posted elsewhere, I did not mention trying to replace the seals on the original distributor. As I recall, I read that you could buy some cheap press to remove the part that I broke and then replace the seals, but the press broke!

It just seemed to be iron, not the strongest metal.

I mentioned installing the new distributor here:

I shared this quote:
Quote:

My inbox is full of people stating that they've replaced their Honda's distributor sub assembly only to find they now have other issues as a result, most notably cam and crank sensor codes, and sometimes even a no-start condition caused by faulty cam and crank sensors. The cam and crank sensors for many Honda engines are located inside the distributor sub assembly.
https://www.ericthecarguy.com/notes-...rmarket-parts/

I wrote:
Quote:

So, an aftermarket distributor was a mistake. Swell. Majestic would ship one for $384.79, but Amazon shipped me a Spectra Premium for $173.25
A few things:
That distributor failed within a year.
Spectra Premium put "Guarantee" on the box. They had the time.
The current one was $255, but Amazon is now charging $137.72 shipped.

I e-mailed Spectra Premium. Amazon links a warranty PDF for gas tanks, but it says "Limited Lifetime" on the page.

I had hoped to replace the broken bit with the good one, but I do not think that I will be able to do that.

Why don't I replace the actual sensor? That just requires a screwdriver, right?

redpoint5 09-06-2020 11:46 PM

Global pandemic is the lamest excuse to face the fear of rejection I've ever heard.

F the global pandemic, I'm coming to see you is the bravest excuse to see a person I've ever heard...

not going to read the nitty gritty details of the post.

Xist 09-07-2020 12:20 AM

K

Xist 09-07-2020 12:34 AM

I thought that I had everything figured out.
 
I replaced the sensor, cleared the CEL, and left Tucson.

After an hour it came back.

I called someone that I knew in the area and she said the drive to Globe was fine, so I kept driving, but I also kept trying to reach Uhaul so I could still make it home with my car tonight. I didn't have a signal until I was in-town, but it was already seven, and they were closed. However, for some reason a motel in the next town had a truck and trailer and was open until ten.

I made a reservation, but they never called like they were supposed to. I tried to confirm on-line, but it kept trying to send me to locations over an hour in the wrong direction. I called, but couldn't get through.

I couldn't cancel easily, either, but an hour of canyon driving in the dark without cell phone coverage or a safe place to pull off the highway seemed like a bad idea.

I had difficulty just reserving a motel room. Pages only loaded while I was driving!

The thing is: I was supposed to be home last night and I promised my brother that I would be home today.

Hopefully a mechanic can fix it without too much drama and the car is reliable for at least months, but I always say that I only keep my old cars for as long as they save me money.

Two distributor in less than a year and two nights in a hotel aren't saving me money, but worse, this car is keeping me from keeping promises.

nemo 09-07-2020 11:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Xist (Post 630686)
Two distributor in less than a year and two nights in a hotel aren't saving me money, but worse, this car is keeping me from keeping promises.

Starting to look like the OEM part would have been cheaper if that is the actual problem.

Xist 09-07-2020 12:01 PM

1 Attachment(s)
https://ecomodder.com/forum/attachme...1&d=1599494137
What made the sensor melt?! Did the Tucson heat contribute?

Hopefully I can get a warranty exchange, but will the third one fall the same way?

It is entirely possible that a Honda part wouldn't have done this--or it would have, after costing me twice as much, and I wouldn't have a warranty because I wouldn't have driven a couple of hours each way to pay big bucks for a dealership mechanic to remove two bolts.

Until I figure out why it failed I don't know the rest, but I sure wish that I borrowed Mom's car like she wanted, or I rented a tow truck and dolly in Tucson like she wanted!

M_a_t_t 09-07-2020 07:51 PM

Did you make it home yet?

Xist 09-07-2020 07:54 PM

60% there! :)

Xist 09-07-2020 09:49 PM

185 miles down, but 450 miles back! Home safely!
 
Who's a good girl?! (Scratches the Accord behind the mirror)

ME_Andy 09-08-2020 08:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Xist (Post 630751)
Who's a good girl?!

Correct answer: the girl who helped you get a hotel room and stuff

nemo 09-08-2020 08:18 AM

Glad you made it back safely.

Xist 09-08-2020 02:54 PM

For some reason I have not heard from Miss Tucson much since I came home. I video-called her when I pulled onto Mom's street, but she didn't answer, so I messaged "Home safely!" She responded "Yay!" I showered, ate dinner, ran my brother's bath, and took him for a walk. She messaged me "Everything okay? Settled in at home again?" and then told me "Sweet dreams! I am going to bed!"

Crazy J said that every mechanic in town is three weeks behind, but he would try to look at it today, although he kept repeating and contradicting himself. He mentioned me finding yet another distributor multiple times, but said that he wouldn't warranty the work unless he bought the part.

It is two bolts, right on top of the engine!

The nearest distributor is an hour and a half away, in Payson. I drove through there yesterday!

I drove through many towns yesterday...

The price has gone down $50, so I can order another from Amazon and have it here on Thursday, or I can drive an hour and a half each way to the nearest location with the right distributor, pull mine out of the car, and ask for a replacement. It would be hot, but I read "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy!" I always bring a towel!

I keep thinking that a can of compressed air would really help cool down the part, but since it is attached to the engine, I wonder how much good that would do.

I tried to remove the drive gear and swap with the old one. I may have damaged the rest in the process.

This came for sale a few days ago in Show Low: https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...7387394267061/

I think the paint on the hood looks worse than the remaining dents in mine, but which would be easier to fix? :) The tires only have 200 miles! Mine only have 200 left! 268,000 miles and a bad engine and transmission. I am not swapping over mine just because the roof is better!

The bumper isn't covered in Gorilla Tape and the back seat doesn't have dog blood!

I should be able to remove the tape, but nothing has worked so far, and the corner is damaged. Mom keeps offering to peel off the tape, but it would ruin what is left of the paint.

It really needs to be repainted, though. Peeling tape, removing adhesive, fixing the corner again, and then repainting would probably take a long time.

Maybe the DX's distributor still works! :D

The owner says "It dose run but it will need to be towed."

I just got out of towing an Accord!

I mean... I am pretty sure that I could tow it with my car...

Xist 09-08-2020 05:41 PM

Spectra Premium responded! What do I do?!
 
He asked for my purchase information and wrote:
Quote:

Once I have this information, I will forward it to the warranty team and they will handle it from there. They will generally respond to you within 7 days with details on the replacement or refund. Amazon will want this part back unless it is hazardous, as in fuel delivery parts. They will send out the replacement first, and you will have 30 days to return the defective part. They will provide you with a link to a prepaid shipping label that you can print out and use to make the return.
Generally respond within 7 days. Do you think that I will then enjoy 2-day shipping?

I could have it at least a week earlier by buying a third one! :D

JSH 09-10-2020 12:45 AM

Glad you made it home. Have you given any thought to selling both old beaters and buying one new and more reliable car?

Your experience with your credit card is why I always carry two cards when I travel. Two credit cards and a debit card today. In the past when I only had one credit card I would take my debit card too. I also take two IDs (sometimes 3) and keep them separate. That way if my wallet is lost or stolen I still have an ID and a credit card.

I learned this the first time I went to Europe and found out most places didn't allow signatures. It was chip and pin and my credit card didn't have a pin* so none of the kiosks (like for the train and bus stations) would accept my card. That debit card came in real handy for the days it took to get the credit card straightened out.

*Turns out card did have a pin, I just didn't know it. The pin was written somewhere on the original paperwork. They wouldn't change the pin with out the original pin nor would they give it to me over the phone. Instead they mailed it to my address on file so I had to have a friend go get my mail and then email me the pin. My trip was about over before I could use my card.

Xist 09-10-2020 02:21 AM

Hey OP, sorry for going off-topic, but this thread is about an Accord, so this totally doesn't fit in the $1,500 beater thread!

1999 manual with 240,000 miles for $1,500.

2003 manual Accord with 177,000 miles that was driven by someone who didn't know how to drive a stick for 5 months for $1,500.

2000 Accord with 202,000 miles and many new parts for $1,500.

I look at cars all of the time. I test-drove the Fit, but at first the owner said that he was flexible on the price, then suddenly was firm, told me that I was being paranoid, he wouldn't lie to me, and acted uncomfortable with me taking the car to a mechanic.

I believe the problem with my credit card was that absolutely every transaction for the past six months was in Show Low and suddenly someone was charging up hundreds of dollars in, of all places, Tucson, so I needed to tell my bank that I would be traveling.

You don't carry cash? Traveler's checks? An especially-healthy goat for barter? :)

I was surprised how many people I saw using cash the other day. I rarely used it before six months ago, but I haven't used it once since!

Gasoline Fumes 09-10-2020 04:21 AM

Goat - Don't leave home without it

nemo 09-10-2020 08:38 AM

So you drive old beaters and carry no tools?
Take a trip and carry no cash?

What will you do different next time, what lessons learned?

Xist 09-10-2020 10:06 AM

Borrow Mom's car, still carry tools and cash, as well as a second change of clothes, and my emergency bag.

Xist 09-10-2020 01:27 PM

Further trips to Tucson have been canceled
 
We had several long conversations on the phone and through video chat last week. She kept trying to get me to stay longer on Sunday. I felt like we had a connection like I rarely had before, and we decided to continue seeing each other on Saturdays. We agreed on Saturday that we weren't going to pursue anyone else and we were going to see where this went. I mentioned, she hasn't talked to me much since.

I asked her "Is there anything in particular you want to do this weekend? Get food from somewhere, watch a specific movie, etc.?"

She replied "Oh yeah, this weekend isn't going to work" and she mentioned a few things that wouldn't take much time.

Excuses.

When she went from hot to cold like that I told her "This isn't going to work."

"Okay."

JSH 09-10-2020 06:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Xist (Post 630896)
We had several long conversations on the phone and through video chat last week. She kept trying to get me to stay longer on Sunday. I felt like we had a connection like I rarely had before, and we decided to continue seeing each other on Saturdays. We agreed on Saturday that we weren't going to pursue anyone else and we were going to see where this went. I mentioned, she hasn't talked to me much since.

I asked her "Is there anything in particular you want to do this weekend? Get food from somewhere, watch a specific movie, etc.?"

She replied "Oh yeah, this weekend isn't going to work" and she mentioned a few things that wouldn't take much time.

Excuses.

When she went from hot to cold like that I told her "This isn't going to work."

"Okay."

I suspect her going from hot to cold had something to do with the fact that the first time she met you: your car broke down, your credit cards were declined, you had no money, and she had to pay to get you a hotel room.

Xist 09-10-2020 06:58 PM

None of that was true.

freebeard 09-10-2020 07:11 PM

Quote:

None of that was true.
Who should we believe on this? You, or you?
Quote:

Hey OP, sorry for going off-topic, but this thread is about an Accord
OP is going to be so P.O.ed. :)

Xist 09-10-2020 07:14 PM

Look here, Freebeard!

I was able to use my credit card, it was just a hassle. My car was still drivable, I just had a check engine light, and nobody told me "Don't drive your car with that CEL!" or "You are okay, just take care of it as soon as you can!"

She didn't need to get me a hotel room, she was just faster with her phone.

freebeard 09-10-2020 08:33 PM

Look hear, Xits.... :)

All we have to go on is what filters through a low-bandwidth medium. Two movies on one screen, half-empty/half-full. Macht nichts.

So is the thread title Stranded in Tucson or no? Not that I care.

Xist 09-10-2020 08:44 PM

Methinks the lady doth protest too much.

Clearly I was mistaken about being stranded, not that anyone gave me any repair help.

Fat Charlie 09-10-2020 08:51 PM

Hot to cold, for any reason, is reason to leave. And to be thankful that it happened that soon.

Xist 09-15-2020 11:54 AM

I looked at the parts car.
 
The paint was bad all over and there were many small dents. I had hoped to swap several parts, but right now that list is down to tires, the front bumper, and the air intake tube, although I am sure that I can pull a number of spare parts. The owner is out of town, but the fiancée said that he bought new tires from Big O when the transmission started slipping and then the engine failed.

They are Sentury Touring. I had not heard of the brand, but he said that he got them from Big O, and for some reason they gave him tires that were a size wider than normal. I believe the V6 is supposed to have 205s and the four-cylinder calls for 195s.

Big O doesn't show them, but when I search they come up for Discount. $55 each tire, $84 for installation, $8 for an environmental fee, and $11 for disposal.

Discount says $323 for 4.

Are Michelin Defenders still supposed to be the most fuel-efficient tires? This list puts them at #6, with Michelin Energy Saver A/S being #1, although no data is given.

Walmart has both and the Energy Saver is actually cheaper, although sold through a third-party. The site does not say how much they charge to install tires. OnlineTires charges $112.06 each and Walmart wants $114.99 per tire. It shows $483.58 for taxes and fees. That is only 7.88%. This page says that they charge $15 per tire for installation, so it would be more like $(448.24 + 60) * 1.0788 = $548.29.

I think the blue book on my car is $1,300. Are you guys going to tell me to pay 42% of the value of my car in tires? :)

The cheapest ones that Walmart shows are Lionhart, $44.57 each, $59.57 installed, and $257.06 out the door.

The Senturies aren't the cheapest tire. Hopefully they are adequate.

When I was in Tucson I realized that the air intake tube is broken off where a vacuum tube connects.

If I get $200 for the car then I should at least break even.

The fiancée said the owner will be back in town in a few days.

Xist 11-16-2020 02:07 PM

I must have mentioned this elsewhere. The parts car looked adequate. I would have swapped over the tires, upgraded a few parts on my car, probably removed a few parts, and taken the rest to the junkyard, but the owner would only accept cash. I use Bank of America and ever since they sold out their rural branches to a small bank the nearest location has been 135 miles away in Flagstaff.

Obviously there are better solutions.

"Facebook pay?"
"No, cash only."
"Wait, no money order or cashier's check?"
I never heard back, so I guess not.

I almost never use cash, but when I needed it I got it from the register at Walmart, except now the only cashier is in the cigarette line, and that was more effort than I wanted to put into this.

I didn't know how to pay them conveniently. I also didn't know if I would break even and the tires weren't my first choice. Why should I put more effort into buying than they put into selling?

Well, it seems that someone came up with the cash.

JSH 11-16-2020 04:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Xist (Post 636499)
I must have mentioned this elsewhere. The parts car looked adequate. I would have swapped over the tires, upgraded a few parts on my car, probably removed a few parts, and taken the rest to the junkyard, but the owner would only accept cash. I use Bank of America and ever since they sold out their rural branches to a small bank the nearest location has been 135 miles away in Flagstaff.

Obviously there are better solutions.

"Facebook pay?"
"No, cash only."
"Wait, no money order or cashier's check?"
I never heard back, so I guess not.

I almost never use cash, but when I needed it I got it from the register at Walmart, except now the only cashier is in the cigarette line, and that was more effort than I wanted to put into this.

I didn't know how to pay them conveniently. I also didn't know if I would break even and the tires weren't my first choice. Why should I put more effort into buying than they put into selling?

Well, it seems that someone came up with the cash.

Sounds like it is time to switch to a local bank OR - even better - a Credit Union. Most credit unions have agreements with other credit unions. My credit union is only in Oregon but I can bank at my parents credit union in Michigan like it is my own.

To get cash fast I would go to an ATM. Most banks allow you to take out $500 a day.

Or you could use an online only bank like ALLY. They have a nationwide network of ATMs and allow $1,000 a day. They also provide checks like any other bank and will send cashier's check by mail.

(I bank with a credit union and ALLY)

freebeard 11-16-2020 05:32 PM

Quote:

I almost never use cash, ..., and that was more effort than I wanted to put into this.
....
Well, it seems that someone came up with the cash.
Money talks, something something walks.

10'000 Bitcoins - Laura Saggers

Sup-uh Dup-uh!

Fat Charlie 11-16-2020 06:07 PM

Craigslist deals are all cash. And yes, I'd treat Facebook deals exactly the same way: Make sure someone knows everything about the deal and has copies of all your communication with the other party.

For bonus points, try for neutral territory if feasible. I don't do many CL transactions, but so far I'm batting 1000.

oil pan 4 11-16-2020 06:58 PM

Everyone on face book trying to scam uses money order.
When I sell on Facebook or Craigslist I only deal in cash only.
Anyone that tries to use anything else is assumed to be a scammer or fake.
Anyone selling something who wants money order as payment it's safe to assume they are running a scam.

JSH 11-16-2020 07:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Fat Charlie (Post 636520)
Craigslist deals are all cash. And yes, I'd treat Facebook deals exactly the same way: Make sure someone knows everything about the deal and has copies of all your communication with the other party.

For bonus points, try for neutral territory if feasible. I don't do many CL transactions, but so far I'm batting 1000.

Any transaction I make with an individual is done with cash - buying or selling. Don't want to meet in person and do the deal in cash? I assume you are attempting to scam me.

Xist 11-16-2020 07:35 PM

How do I ad-hominem? Is it fun? :)
 
Does everyone see that warning? I never saw it before I clicked on "Go Advanced."

Opening an account just for a parts car sounded like too much effort. Besides, I went to the local credit union and asked to open an account. The previously-friendly-seeming lady said "Oh, you don't want to open an account with us!"

If I ever return to that school I would tell them that I had a new bank account and open a local one, maybe at National Bank, the one place that was willing to notarize something for me.

For the record, Safeway always has human cashiers, and I can still get cash back.

Oops!

I apologize for going off-topic, but I stopped at Home Depot today, and spent $5.11 for a non-chip key for my Honda, so I have at least 3 keys that will at least open my passenger door, if necessary.

It looks like I will be paying the third-party surcharge to send out stuff today:
  1. My fast Lenovo.
  2. My old distributor
  3. My nephew's Lego-filled piñata [already late]
If they have a notary then I will get some forms signed and then I need to find a convenient place to mail them.

My sister in California found my name listed twice on MissingMoney.com. She hasn't really given me a reason to doubt her, although I did a search for it before going there. Wikipedia says that it is a government site, so then you can ask if you can trust the government, but I wouldn't be giving them information they didn't already have.

Heck, they have my DNA!

I mentioned this to a completely different woman in Tucson and she wrote "I wouldn't trust Wikipedia if I were you but that's just me."

I have never found anything significantly wrong with its data. Yes, allegedly anyone can edit it, but it is peer-reviewed, so if you tried to claim that the current POTUS was born yesterday, it would be changed back quickly, and they may show intolerance of your free speech.

I didn't read that message in a timely fashion. The Internet was out and my data was hardly working. I had more pressing matters than maintaining contact with people that I may never meet. The next morning, when I was catching up on messages, she wrote me again, saying "I guess that we are not talking anymore."

Once I finally had the time to read her first message I didn't see how it merited a response. I am unsure that her second one does, either. I asked on Facebook what the correct response to the former was and nobody has given me a good suggestion, so I am not going to worry about it. Someone responded "[M]ost people who say they don't trust wikipedia do so because they don't like what it says rather than having any actual information that is contrary."

Wikipedia wasn't the only source indicating that MissingMoney.com was legitimate, just the only one that I mentioned. Wikipedia's source is the Washington Post, which is good enough for me, but https://www.usa.gov/unclaimed-money also directs you there.

If it were a scam I am confident that it would claim that I had enough money to care about. Allegedly I have had money waiting since 2003-2004--if I can prove that I lived at the addresses shown.

I am not paying for a notary stamp for 2003-2004 money. I was a starving student! :D

freebeard 11-16-2020 08:17 PM

Quote:

How do I ad-hominem? Is it fun? :)
Does everyone see that warning? I never saw it before I clicked on "Go Advanced."
Thanks for asking. I've been wondering what not to say. My first thought was to combine politics, religion and ad-hominea into a single memetic pithy aphorism. The closest I've come is:

"Release the Kraken"

Quote:

I apologize for going off-topic
Who's thread again?


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