My 1991 Caprice Classic- What it was to what it is - Chevy Impala SS Forum
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-20-2016, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
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Talking My 1991 Caprice Classic- What it was to what it is

Hey Guys! I am 19 years old and I obtained my 1991 Caprice Classic at the age of 17. For two years I have been driving this car around, barely realizing how special this car is and what it truly means to me. This car, before I received it, was my grandfather's "town car." Being that he lived on a farm, he rarely drove this unless he went into town to go to the bank, the grocery with my grandmother, or had other such business in town. This was his dream car and he finally had it, second owner. There later came a day, after he was no longer farming and had no sons to continue working his farm (he had two daughters, my mother and my aunt), that he rented out his fields and pastures to another farmer. As the years went by, he finally passed away due to kidney failure. I was 5 years old at the time. His car was then run about once a month by my grandmother for the first few years, however never moved from it's spot in the garage. Eventually, she stopped running it in place all together, and there it sat, not being started for 10 or 11 years. I was 6 or 7. It was forgotten for a long time, and no one ever seemed to think to sell it. I don't know why they never did, but I suppose it was one of my grandfather's few items left. No matter the reason, it stayed. Shortly after I turned 17, my current car at the time (a '99 chevy lumina) began failing and falling apart. It was time to get rid of it. Also, my grandmother had just passed away about 10 months before, and my mother had to figure out which car she was to have titled to her name- my grandfather's or my grandmother's. She knew I needed a car, spoke with my aunt about it, and was told to pick which one I wanted. I thought it over for about a month and decided on "grandpa's." Well, shortly thereafter it was sent to the shop on a flatbed. Flat, dry-rotted tires, dusty dash, glass, and a** ( ) and the clanking of metal chains on the flatbed going down the gravel lane. Fast-forward two weeks. Mom tells me the car is running strong. After new lines, hoses, pumps, tanks- the whole shebang, we can go get "Grandpa's car." We get down there and it still has the old tires on it. Lucky for us, the rims weren't flat from sitting. That was a bumpy ride (I wasn't impressed) to Wally World for 4 new tires, with the thin white-walls. Then, on the road back home. Woah. Big difference. Wow. This is smooth going. Flip the radio on *cue loud screech" what the?!?!? Turn the radio off *stop loud screech*
We get it home and Im happy. I have my own car, sure the radio doesn't work, but oh well... That got me in trouble a year ago haha...

Thats how I came to get my car... there is more that happens later, but I think thats long enough of a book to read for now...

Until later

-Chris


So what if I drive my grandpa's car?
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 01-08-2017, 11:32 PM Thread Starter
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So, I feel its time I add to my story of this car...

I got it home and all went well that Fall and Winter, and most of the Spring, until a trip down the gravel road home from trapshooting practice. It wasn't a particularly hot day, really quite comfortable, but it was asparagus season (as far as I know, ditch asparagus is primarily a midwest thing), so as I'm driving along the road, I stop at a few of my favorite spots. At the corner of a certain intersection, I pull to the side of the road, leave my car running, and hop down into the ditch to cut a couple stalks. As I turn to come out of the ditch, I hear what sounds like water hitting the ground... but, wait a minute... water isn't solid green. Sh*t... that's my coolant... So, I shut my car off and call my mother. *no answer* So then I call my dad. *no answer* (yet they always nag at me "why do you have a phone if you aren't going to answer when we call") Go to call mom again, but as im dialing the number, dad calls back! I explain the situation to him and he says "okay. I'll come out and take a look. I'm 5 minutes from home" long story short, dad and I decide we can drive it to the mechanic behind the railroad tracks across town and park it (small town, you can do that), then give him a call the next morning when he's there. We hear back... its the head gaskets... ****. "Okay, get it done" was said to him. Two weeks and a bill I'd rather forget, later (during which time I was allowed to get the 79 camaro out and add some miles to her speedometer) I had my baby back in perfect working order! She ran great, besides a small transmission leak which was fixed later on as well, until I came home from college a year later... but that's an add-on I will type another day.

Until next time!

-Chris


So what if I drive my grandpa's car?
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 06:51 PM
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Great story thanks for sharing!
Jim
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 07:30 PM
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Nice write up! I've had a few adventures in my '91 wagon as well. Subscribed.

'91 Caprice wagon. Owned since 1999.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-09-2017, 01:03 AM Thread Starter
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So, I was thinking the other day that I haven't taken the time to add to my story in a while. Looking at the posting dates, I see that it has been almost a year since I've posted anything here! Keep in mind, however, that this happened in May of 2016. That being said, let me get on with my story...

I left off last time with the mention of my transmission leak. Well, when we took it to the mechanic (a man we've taken our cars to for years, and who learned from the previous owner, who we had gone to before he retired) he diagnosed it as a front transmission seal leak. After having sat for so long, it had rotted and eventually fell apart. That seal was replaced and the car stopped leaking trans fluid on the driveway. This lasted for quite a while, until that fateful day on the weekend before finals week at college. While I was driving home with the majority of my room packed into my car, I was jamming to some music and heading toward home. All of a sudden, this car that had been behind me for a while passed me in the right lane (I had just passed him a couple miles back) going about 80 mph. I was going 70. Trying to figure out what lit a fire under his backside, I look in my rearview mirror and right side mirror, and I see what appears to be black smoke coming out from under my car as I drive along the highway. Wondering what the heck was going on, I get into the right lane, pull over onto the shoulder, and turn my hazards on. I leave the car on, wait for the cars to pass, then get out and walk around to the right side of my car, away from all the traffic. It is at this point I hear sizzling, then a "woosh" as my transmission fluid decides to dump out on the side of the road. All of it. The smell and the color were all I needed to think "well sh*t" before hurrying to shut my car off. Then, I call my mom (again lol) to find out what our insurance covers for towing. She says she will call me back. Meanwhile, I was supposed to meet my dad, sister, and stepmom for a dinner out that night, so I gave him a call as well and inform him of the situation. Then mom calls back with a tow number. I call them, but since they would only tow to their own shop (which is reasonable, I suppose), they gave me a number to another towing company. After I call them, its about another hour before my dad comes to pick me up and the tow truck arrives a couple minutes after. They load up my car and $200 later, its at our main mechanic's shop. They towed it a good distance for so little. I was expecting a $400 bill, but they were great. As for me, I was able to borrow dad's Chrysler Sebring for the week to finish up finals and bring the rest of my stuff home. I'm lucky to have my family, I have to say! As for major issues though, that pretty much sums it up. The next problem was much easier on the checkbook though!

Until next time!

-Chris


So what if I drive my grandpa's car?
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-02-2018, 07:21 AM Thread Starter
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The "Diesel" Caprice

Hey all! I am back again! This one is a little less troublesome, though still was not the best thing to have happen. My car decided to make an attempt to become a "diesel" while driving on the interstate between Iowa City and Cedar Rapids, IA. There I was driving along with the rest of traffic, getting onto a clover leaf on-ramp when about halfway up the ramp my car becomes a LOT louder than it has ever been before. Sitting in the driver's seat, you would have thought I was driving a diesel truck up that ramp. Obviously I am concerned, so I pull off the highway onto the nearest exit ramp to stop and shut off my car and make a phone call to, of course, Mom. Mom, however, was working late that day and therefore did not answer. So, next person was Dad. Dad answered, to my surprise. I told him what was going on, and he asked the questions about how it felt the engine was running, did it jump, did I lose any power or feel a change in how it drove at all? "Fine. No. No and no." So he figured it was good to drive but to just pay a lot of attention to any odd changes in performance or for smoke/smells that aren't normal. "Okay." So I get back on the highway and start going again. It seriously sounded like a diesel truck. It was a decent quality of sound, too, but also obnoxious to have to listen to for an extended period of time. No problems on the remainder of the ride home. We call up our mechanic the next day and he had time to fit it in that day since I was only home for the weekend. We drop it off that night and the next day we hear from him; there is a hole rusted through the exhaust about dead center under the cab. That explains the "diesel" sound. It also explains why it sounded louder while sitting in my cab than it did when outside with the car running... Anyway, he was able to order the part and get it delivered on Saturday (I had returned home on a Thursday), put it in, and my car was quieter than before it had a hole in the exhaust!

Not as "exciting" as some of the previous stories, but also a bit cheaper and therefore more fun than the other stories! lol
The next couple of "installments" will be some self-fixes that were a bit of a headache, but satisfying in the end!

Until next time!

-Chris


So what if I drive my grandpa's car?

Last edited by 19caprice91; 06-02-2018 at 07:21 AM. Reason: spelling correction
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