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Old 05-30-2006, 10:53 AM   #1 (permalink)
StangFlyer
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Unhappy Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

What happened yesterday while driving my Mustang is almost unbelievable...

First, after putting the Mustang up for winter storage in perfect running order, I recently found it would not start when I went to fire it up a couple weeks ago. Rather frustrating to say the least. So, with some time to finally look into it yesterday I ended up finding that the MSD unit took a crap AND that the current set of plugs were fouled out from trying to start it. After two hours of changing plugs and bypassing the MSD unit the car fired right up. Ahhhh, the sound of power again.

Thus, I pulled her out and washed it up. Then, decided to go out for a little cruising around town. After about 30 minutes of tooling around the street I ended up hitting the e-way. I'm cruising along, doing about 70, just enjoying the ride when suddenly most of the power vanishes, the motor tone changes, and I could just tell something happened.

I didn't know what was going on at first, so I tried giving it a little throttle... but, it was like someone took four cylinders away. Suddenly white smoke appears around the front of the car and little speckles start appearing on the windshield. It was at about this time that I look over at my fuel pressure gauge to see that the fuel system is only at 20 psi!

Immediately I knew that something was going on with the fuel system, and fearing I was leaking fuel somehow I knew I had to get off the road ASAP. I was almost at an exit ramp onto another highway, and I headed off on it hoping to get to the nearest exit once I got onto it.

The exit, or on ramp for the other highway, is one of those long curved ramps. As soon as I started curving around it, going about 30 mph, suddenly my rearend just comes right out from under me and the whole car goes into a huge 360 spin! Of course, this was a total surprise and unexpected, so I'm working the wheel like mad trying to get the car back straight. After completely spinning around it headed off the road, mowed over one of those metal marker rods nailing the front valance, and I slid the car through the grass stopping it two feet from going into a big ditch where I would have most likely flipped the car over.

Needless to say I was totally freaked! Not knowing if the car would ignite from fuel, I unlocked my harnesses and got out as fast I could. I was also freaking out thinking the whole front of the car was probably trashed from nailing that metal rod. Fortunately, the car was not on fire... and, although the front facia is definitely toast (it is cracked and bent in and the drivers fog light is broken), it's not all that bad. It will need a new front fascia, fog lamps, and have it painted, of course. My guess is about $500. Otherwise, all is good.

Any ways, after getting under the hood I found that the front fuel injector on the drivers side was leaking fuel all over the place. Fortunately, I was able to get a hold of someone who brought tools out to where I was at. I removed the fuel rail brackets on that side and pulled the injector out to find that the top o-ring on the injector (the pressure side obviously) had a big chunk on one side gone. It must have dried out and crack... and, it just gave away from the pressure. The fuel coming out everywhere must have been dumping on the road. So, driving through it when I started going around the curve of the exit ramp, it was like hitting an oil slick... and, the rear tires just let go like I was on ice or something.

It's just crazy that a .35 cent o-ring almost trashed the Stang and probably almost caught me on fire. Is that flipping crazy or what?!
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Old 05-30-2006, 11:12 AM   #2 (permalink)
drudis
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Default Re: Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

Wow!!!

Lucky to get out of that situation as easily as you did. Could'a been a lot worse!
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Old 05-30-2006, 11:46 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

Glad you're ok...and to think you jump out of planes for fun and driving your car on the street almost got ya.
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Old 05-30-2006, 01:51 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

Wow! That is nuts! You are very lucky dude. I believe I would replace ALL of the o-rings just to be safe.
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Old 05-30-2006, 02:36 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

Wow dude! So many things running through my head right now, not sure where to start. But, I'll do my best.

First and foremost, YOU and all the other commuters that day, get to go home. All is well! Bottom line! Screw the car, we can build you another one just like it, YOU are OK, and noone else got hurt. That's the main thing! Being a union Firefighter, I've seen stuff go down that shouldn't have happened, but it did. It truly is a "when your number gets pulled" type of thing! Kiss your wife, hug the kids, get on with it. Wasn't your turn. But be glad it wasn't!

As far as the car goes, ALL of them green O-Rings would be getting changed if it was me! Don't forget about the fuel rails, and fuel line O-Rings! God sent ya a "Howwee Stick" (How-WEE is that a BIG STICK!!) so listen to him! Those of us in the "midwest" or regions that actually have to store the car half a year, are at a disadvantage. The car "sitting" is harder on it than running it, trust me! Not saying that YOU personally screwed the pooch, cuz you did nothing different than what I would have done. But things happen, stuff dry rots, etc etc. If THAT particular O-Ring failed, how far behind are the others? They were all installed at the same time, right?

Dude, kiss the car for keeping you safe. Kiss the wife, kiss the kids. Then FIX the car!!!! Like I said, you did NOTHING wrong, but this is a wakeup call!
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Old 05-30-2006, 09:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

Good thing you don't smoke, Dan.
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Old 05-30-2006, 10:02 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

You're not kidding Steve (Capri306)! That would have really sucked if I had a cigarette hanging out the window. LOL

1989GT, Believe it or not, skydiving is probably twice as safe (statistically) as just driving my Mustang around town. Despite the two bizzare skydiving deaths reported over the holiday weekend, your chances of dying skydiving are 8500:1. Your chances of getting killed just driving your car to the work are 3500:1. Go figure. There are like 4 million skydives in the U.S. each year, and out of those there are, on average, 30 deaths per year. Modern skydiving equipment has brought the sport a long ways and drastically increased safety. However, there is some level of risk... but, with proper equipment, adherence to safety protocols, and common sense it's an acceptable level of risk... just like with drag racing or many other activities.

Jester, I'm not as upset about it as you might expect. I'm happier that it didn't go up in flames, or slide a few feet farther and flip into the ditch, etc... The result was rather minor to other possibilities.

In any event, I'm ordering a new facia, bumper support, and fog light bracketry. The impact support looks fine... although it made an obvious mark where it moved in and out absorbing the impact of the pole.

Here's a pic:


Here's more:
http://www.danmcclain.com/photos/MyC...rontEndDamage/
(you can't see it, but the one fog light bracket bolt ripped right through the bumper)
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Old 05-30-2006, 10:38 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

Yeah I realize skydiving is "safe"...just something about jumping out of a plane that doesn't seem quite right...although I'd like to try it sometime LOL .
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Old 05-31-2006, 11:29 AM   #9 (permalink)
drudis
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Default Re: Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

Before you order anything, see what I have.
I pulled a bunch of it off, never going back on!
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Old 05-31-2006, 04:20 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thumbs up Re: Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1989GT

Yeah I realize skydiving is "safe"...just something about jumping out of a plane that doesn't seem quite right...although I'd like to try it sometime LOL .
I have a friend who is a 'private' pilot (non-commercial) and says that he could never see the point of jumping out of a plane unless it was going to crash. I get that - but like many others, experiencing the thrill of free-falling from thousands of feet in the air before opening the chute and drifting down to a safe landing is very appealing.

Unfortunately, my wife has made it very clear that she is 100% against my attempting skydiving as it is a totally unnecessary risk, in her opinion. I have chosen to respect her wishes and forego any skydiving attempts, at least for the near future.

StangFlyer:

Scary experience there - but at least you ended up safe and with only minor Mustang damage. As others have mentioned, extended storage can do more harm to a vehicle than actually driving it. Now you see how that works. Perhaps next winter, you may want to keep the insurance on the car and on dry days, drive it a bit just to keep it 'limber'. Like people who don't get any exercise, non-use of a car can atrophy seals and other parts.

In any case, glad to see you handled the situation with good sense and quickly located the cause of the problem. Best of all, you didn't get hurt.
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Old 05-31-2006, 11:25 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

StangFlyer:
I can totally sympathize with your experience. Launching the old mustang thru that ditch and hitting the culvert all due to a darn dog, thought I had tweaked the frame for sure. Lady luck was with me and I only lost the front spoiler.

I hate having to store my car every year....I put it away gorgeous and ready to roll in the spring.....hard to remember the last time I got it out in spring and it didnít have something acting up I had to fix.

Glad you both are ok.
Ryan
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Old 06-04-2006, 05:44 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mustang Wounded! And, almost caught on fire!

Quote:
Originally Posted by rwhite65
StangFlyer:
I can totally sympathize with your experience. Launching the old mustang thru that ditch and hitting the culvert all due to a darn dog, thought I had tweaked the frame for sure. Lady luck was with me and I only lost the front spoiler.

I hate having to store my car every year....I put it away gorgeous and ready to roll in the spring.....hard to remember the last time I got it out in spring and it didnít have something acting up I had to fix.

Glad you both are ok.
Ryan
Glad both your cars are not badly damaged. No winters to speak of in Texas. Houston humidity and 90-100+ F June-July-August-September is a hardship for most though. Some of us old timers here are just used to it. You can drive your baby year round though. I actually wait until the "dead of winter", Jan-Feb to go to the track so I can get some cold air (40 F) for good track times. Come to Texas, we need more like Dan and Ryan.

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