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Old 10-30-2016, 01:24 PM   #1
sirspanky
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Default Will a $500 car make it across country?

Stay tuned to find out.

Hey everyone. I'm officially back in a Volvo. I'm finishing up a job out here in NorCal. My partner hasn't had a vacation in years so I'm flying her, our roommate and a friend out here to meet me in 2 days.

I was tasked with finding a very cheap, reliable, vehicle to transport us all back home to Florida. I looked at a lot of ads, various makes and models etc. Came very close to nabbing up an 850r for $1500. But that was basically the max of my budget...so I went the other way with it.

Allow me to introduce you to our transportation. Her full title is, Freyja Queen of the Valkyries of Valhalla.



The Craigslist ad pics:



$500. 197k miles on the working odometer. M46, over drive is flawless. Has it's quirks...but it ran and drove and was super cheap. The clutch slips if you don't shift like a grandpa, and reverse is super weak... borderline useless. Also....rust. All over the place. Undercarriage is clean, but the body panels are eating themselves. Super extended door opening mod with economically efficient door crease. I drove it 250 miles the day I bought it, up 8% grade mountain roads. Figured that was a good test of the vehicles ability in general. The grin hasn't left my face since purchase.

To prepare for, what will certainly end up bieng a 4k mile trip, I have loaded the trunk with tools. Clutch kit arrives tomorrow. I'm going to try to temporarily silicone up any suspect areas around the windshield and drivers fender, as I'm getting a bit of water in the cabin leaking down the door frame/inner fender, into the fuse box area. Do an oil change and go.

I have everything I'll need if the clutch does in fact let go. And supplies to survive if we plummet off a cliff or get stuck in the desert.

I'm excited. They're excited. It's time for an adventure and to answer the question. Will a $500 car make it across our massive country. I'll be documenting the adventure, and all the beauty along the way. Stay tuned. Lots more pics to come.
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Last edited by sirspanky; 10-30-2016 at 01:38 PM.. Reason: Added pics
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Old 10-30-2016, 04:14 PM   #2
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How are your tires? T-belt done recently? Coolant look good? Stops in one county when brakes are applied? GL with the trip!
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Old 10-30-2016, 04:16 PM   #3
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If, for some reason, you end up near Modesto feel free to come by for an impromptu 242 meet.
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Old 10-30-2016, 04:19 PM   #4
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Dang son she's a rough old girl.
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Folks on here don't know a good deal when they see it.
how psi stock cna support?

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Old 10-31-2016, 12:03 AM   #5
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How are your tires? T-belt done recently? Coolant look good? Stops in one county when brakes are applied? GL with the trip!
Tires are all less than a year old. Coolant looked ok when I picked it up. I'll check it in the morning. The brakes actually seem really responsive. I'm looking in the notes and papers that came with it for recent tbelt and other maintenance stuffs. New in tank pump.

One of the "quirks" is it will cut fuel for seemingly no reason. Requiring a cycling of the ignition and it's back as if nothing has happened. I think it's actually a fusebox issue. Something josuls just enough, it looses power, and won't jump start while rolling still, but if I cycle the key and start it, it comes right back. Once it didn't, and I tapped the fuse box, and it came back.

So im reading alot about CIS and it's components and I'm gonna clean the contacts on everything and all grounds.

Battery is recent, but I probably could use new terminals.

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If, for some reason, you end up near Modesto feel free to come by for an impromptu 242 meet.
I just might, we're going to plan where we are headed the night they fly in.

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Dang son she's a rough old girl.
I'm still learning her. But she was definitely road hard and put away wet...very
..very wet...and leaky.

The previous owner slowly was fixing her up....not cosmetically... that's basically a lost cause I feel like. At least in any sort of restorable fashion. And that makes it easier for my conscience when I inevitability start hacking away at it.

She will eventually be the bell of the ball in her own way.
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Old 10-31-2016, 01:09 AM   #6
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You might want to consider also changing the fuel pump relay. My '82 would cut out for no reason, then not start. Then, sometimes it would come back, if I shook the relay with the key off. Turns out that the relay that I had in it had a loose relay coil. Swapped one from an '80 into it, replacing the recently made OEM green fuel pump relay. Started right up and has run reliably since then.

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Old 10-31-2016, 01:14 AM   #7
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Dude, I remember checking that car out on CL!! It could have a super awesome ratty look to it without too much effort. I'd start by burning through a lot more of the paint with an aggressive rubbing compound session, followed by some high gloss polishing. Maybe add an orange and white GT stripe on the sides, also all sanded and burnt through...

Awesome adventure, I'm super jealous. I've got a free grill for you if you come through Santa Cruz (which is way out of your way!)

Lotsa tools, little floor jack, clean all the electrical connections that you can, even unplug the battery and wire brush the fuse box with all the fuses removed. Spray it down with contact cleaner. Electrical gremlins on road trips suck! Check engine bay wiring for random fuukery or corrosion, give it a few good general onceovers underneath, and roll! Maybe consider lowering it first, for improved aerodynamics. LOL

Have fun, take pictures!!
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Old 10-31-2016, 01:24 AM   #8
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Hope you have an AAA card with you.
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Old 10-31-2016, 01:39 AM   #9
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Hope you have an AAA card with you.
The rough ones usually have a heart of gold.

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Old 10-31-2016, 01:48 AM   #10
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Was that the Arcata car? Those pics look like junction city and arcata
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Old 10-31-2016, 02:00 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Redwood Chair View Post
The rough ones usually have a heart of gold.

i'd rather buy a hoopty with 300k miles that is continuously driven than one that has sat for 15 years with 50k miles....first the cost is lower so replacement parts can be budgeted for. second, as they have been continuously driven most of the stuff you need to get down the road has been fixed/is working.
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Old 10-31-2016, 02:01 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by NO_SPRK View Post
Was that the Arcata car? Those pics look like junction city and arcata
Yeah, that's where it is from. Seller was super nice and very reasonable and forward about the condition of the vehicle and every problem area it has. He owned it for 3 years and put about $1400 or so into it fixing, replacing, and chasing things. He was a Volvo guy and was hoping another Volvo person would take it on. He has health issues and too many projects.

I don't know if he had been trying to sell it previously before I saw it. But I've been scanning CL from Portland down to L.A.and hadn't seen any 242s until this one. He said two other people had contacted him about and one came to check it out, but claimed they couldn't drive a stick. I didn't want to miss out in the chance to nab a cheap 242 that ran so I sent him a $100 deposit to remove the ad until I could come check it out and drive it. I'm glad I did.

And thanks everyone for the well wishes. I do not have AAA....But my partner does. I'm actually pretty confident in its ability to make it. It's mechanically in decent shape and runs like a sewing machine...with weak motor mounts.

Last edited by sirspanky; 10-31-2016 at 02:14 AM..
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Old 10-31-2016, 02:12 AM   #13
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what color code is it?
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Old 10-31-2016, 02:19 AM   #14
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double post
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Old 10-31-2016, 02:21 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sirspanky View Post
...with weak motor mounts.
Add a pack of ratchet straps to the list.
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Old 10-31-2016, 02:38 AM   #16
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what color code is it?
Dark brown... a little research and a Google image search of "castlewood brown Volvo" brings up something I imagine it looked like. Definitely not a hint of red or anything in it. It's dark, healthy poops, brown.

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Add a pack of ratchet straps to the list.
Good call.
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Old 10-31-2016, 02:40 AM   #17
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Dark brown... a little research a Google image search of "castlewood brown Volvo" brings up something I imagine it looks like. Definitely not a hint of red or anything in it. It's dark, healthy poops, brown.


Good call.
We should start a "high fiber club" of only poop brown cars.
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Old 10-31-2016, 12:42 PM   #18
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We should start a "high fiber club" of only poop brown cars.
Yes!!!!
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Old 10-31-2016, 12:47 PM   #19
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I've done a 2.2lh firing on three cylinders towing a trailer half way across the country. K-jet car that kinda runs,....give me a spare fuel pump and I'd drive back to Sweden without even bothering to bring a tool box. Do it. There's enough tbrickers in the Sunbelt in case something goes wrong
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I'm sure glad that our mods are protecting us from excess poop in these trying times of TP shortages....
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Shoot the poop!
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I commute daily hoping to get that sweet insurance settlement on my 244.
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Old 10-31-2016, 01:02 PM   #20
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Called it!!!

There was that exact same car in Sacramento pick n pull last year some bozo took off the flathood grill and stuffed it not the truck. Idiot couldn't even pUT it in a different car.
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Old 10-31-2016, 08:02 PM   #21
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I would at least change out the coolant hoses and thermostat if they haven't been done yet. And replace (or at least have one in the trunk) the timing belt and other belts. Cheap peace of mind
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Old 11-04-2016, 06:49 PM   #22
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Hey everyone. We're deep into day 3. Will update thread with pics and how it's going this evening when we stop.
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Old 11-05-2016, 08:45 PM   #23
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Awesome! I envy you, best of luck, can't wait to keep up with the trip!
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Old 11-05-2016, 10:01 PM   #24
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I drove a $400 m46 240 for almost 2 years and my buddy smashed the oil pan in so bad it broke oil pump and steering rack. Couple bucks at junk yard it kept running
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Old 11-05-2016, 10:10 PM   #25
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I drove a $400 m46 240 for almost 2 years and my buddy smashed the oil pan in so bad it broke oil pump and steering rack. Couple bucks at junk yard it kept running
Nice, I'm still DDing my $500 245 over 4 years later with minimal work.
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