Sunday, October 21, 2012


I took a staycation this week, Matty was off on fall break and I had a lot of time built up. The week started with Tania waking me up at 6:30 Monday morning to tell me her car was broken. Long story short a diode went out in her alternator taking the battery out with it. Not wanting to spend $150.00 on a tension unloader and not being able to rent one didn't help with the repairs. The alternator was non stock and the battery was Delco which took me two hours at the dealership to warranty, this meant my staycation started on Wednesday.

Last week I ordered a heads up display for the corvette, it is something I have wanted to put in it since I got it. My intent was to start putting it in Monday morning, but started it on Wednesday, The unit I ordered came as a kit with the HUD unit, control panel, bezel and wiring harness. All of the parts are GM except the harness. My corvette is a 2LT trim package, the HUD was part of a 3LT trim package that included memory heated seats and mirrors, 6 disk CD changer and a telescopic steering wheel. Nice stuff but not worth the $3,000.00 price tag. The HUD kit I purchased was $400.00 shipped.

This upgrade is very common for corvette owners, except most of them will cut the ducting to the driver side register to get the HUD unit in the dash. Once it is installed they tape it up with duct tape, which saves hours on the installation. Because I had plenty of time and didn't want to cut the duct I did it the hard way and removed the dash. Just above the steering column you can see the HUD between two ducts the top duct is the one that gets cut in two places for the easy install.

To get that far I had to remove all this stuff....

The install took me about 8 hours total, I was in no hurry and I chose to solder the harness into the factory harness. The kit comes with wire tap connectors which are garbage for reliability. Matty was the official soldering iron holder and helped me finish up the installation.

I took a few pictures of the HUD, its next to impossible to take a clear picture of it but it is quite clear to the naked eye. It has multiple modes and can be configured in different ways, the pictures I took were of the three basic modes.

This is the standard street mode that will display blinkers, radio stations, fuel status etc. It can also be configured with one of two tachometers.
The next two are "Track 1" and "Track 2" they are basically the same, the only real difference being the way the tachometer is displayed. What is visible with these two and not on the street mode is the "G-Meter" across the bottom which reads lateral G's.

Friday I had contractors over as a follow up to our one year walk through of the house. They fixed a couple areas that were squeaking on the hardwood floor and quite a bit of sheet rock work. That occupied most of my day and lead to Saturday being paint day for Tania and I. Tomorrow, weather permitting I am going to take another try at getting some of the vinyl stripes off Matty's car. Then it will be back to work where I will start to think about when I can take a vacation.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Braided Steel Brake Lines

Today I swapped out the rubber flex lines for braided steel lines on the Corvette, The braided lines will not expand like the rubber ones do which makes the brake pedal much firmer and provides better feedback.

Because the car does have over 30k on it now the cast aluminum suspension pieces and the cradles have a lot of road grime on them. I decided to clean them up while I had the wheels off the car. Napa sells a product called "Aluminum Brightener" it contains hydrofluoric, sulfuric and phosphoric acids. With all that bad stuff you know it works great.


After, I never touched the aluminum parts only wiped down the plastic with an old wash mitt, I spent maybe five minutes cleaning this area.

The rear suspension was much dirtier, this picture is after I sprayed it once and let it set for 30 seconds.

Finished about five minutes later.