Thread: Project Lazarus
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Old 06-07-2020, 07:05 PM   #60
husker boxster
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Omaha
Posts: 2,830
I dropped the title off in a drop box at the DMV mid-May. About a week went by and I got a phone call from the DMV. The nice lady said I needed to print off a Cert of Title form from their website, fill it out, and drop it into the DMV box. I had just put my info into the envelope and wrote my name, address, and the fact I only needed a title on the envelope. Hadn’t seen any form on their website. So I asked the lady if everything else looked OK and they just needed the form? YES, I was told. So I find the form, print it off, fill it out, and drop it into the DMV box. This is a Tue so I figure maybe Thu but probably Fri for my title. Not in the mail on Thu or Fri. Sat I see the mailman drop a fat envelope into my mailbox. I rush to see and yes it’s from the DMV.

I open the envelope and the cover letter says I have 30 days to respond or my info goes to the back of the line. I look at page 2 and it’s a Cert for Title form with the signature and address block highlighted to be filled out (you know how they like to use those yellow highlight markers at the DMV). I was shocked that I’d missed that and was certain I’d filled those fields out as I looked it over carefully when filling it out. I notice the other info in the form has been typed in. I didn’t do that. They filled out the form and sent it to me. I guess the DMV’s left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing. Also attached was my bill of sale. Great, now they’ve got my info separated too. I sign and fill out the address and head back to the DMV to drop the bundle into the box. I estimate Wed at the earliest to get the title.

Monday I get a skinny letter from the DMV. It’s my title. HORRAY!!! Once again, left hand – right hand, as there’s no way they could have processed the form I dropped off on Sat and gotten the title into the mail and to my house by Mon afternoon. At this point I don’t care, I have the title. On Fri I got another letter from the DMV returning my bill of sale. Was glad to have that back.

Now that I have a valid title, I could pursue getting a key made based on VIN. The company in NC needed proof of ownership before they’d get the process started. So I call them Mon afternoon. Get vm, leave a msg. Try again Tue afternoon. Same thing – vm, leave msg. I took a chance and texted them a copy of the title and my driver’s license along with a msg about wanting a key. Wed afternoon I was just about to call again, when the nice lady called me. We got all the details worked out and then she said something encouraging – that depending on where this order landed in the schedule, it could be a week for the key to arrive. I thought the website said 4-8 wks, so this was very good. We’ll see, but it’s ordered and on its way.

Steering Wheel
I had called a few upholstery shops about sewing the new leather on my wheel. The first 2 said no, but I found a shop who said they’d have their upholstery guy look at it if I brought it down but he wasn’t in (it was Fri of Memorial w/e). I contacted them on Tue and was told the upholstery guy wasn’t in and they didn’t know when he’d be back - as in multiple days. Hmmm… It’s an upholstery shop and the upholsterer’s whereabouts are unknown? That’s a bit odd and maybe I need to rethink this. I call several more shops in the greater metro area. No one wants to do a steering wheel. They all show fancy interiors they’ve done on the websites, why can’t they do a steering wheel? I find a shop who says he might be able to do it and he’s relatively close to my house and it’s on the way to the DMV, so I stop by for him to look. He did qualify on the phone that he’s getting old and his hands aren’t as steady as they used to be, so he might not want to do the job after looking at my wheel but I need a break so I stop by. Didn’t take him long to decide he didn’t want the job. He said if he did take it, he would’ve had to charge $300 due to all the hours it would need. I think back to the website where I bought the leather. They would have done the job for the $300 too. At the time I thought that was rather high, but if no one locally wants to do it, I might have to send the wheel to slowpoke in FL. I mention my curious experience with the other shop that can’t find their upholsterer and he wrinkles his nose and says he wouldn’t recommend them. He said that shop takes on work they’re not qualified for and the results aren’t good. I didn’t get the impression he was dogging them because they’re his competition, rather he’s just an old guy w/o a filter. Good to know.

I expand my search and call a shop in Lincoln. He says he might be able to do it but would want to look at it first. The next day I needed to go to Fremont to inventory some Porsche parts a friend wants me to help him sell (keep an eye on the classifieds), so I decided to make a big loop out of it and go to Lincoln from Fremont. Tory looks it over and says he thinks he can do it but it will be around 8 hrs of labor - $150-175. And it would be 4 wks. I was fine with the price (I didn’t tell him the other est) but would like it a bit sooner. I didn’t expect him to drop everything he was doing to work on this but that was a bit long. He changes to 2-2.5 wks. Works for me. I’ve received a few phone calls from him asking intelligent questions, so I somehow feel hopeful. If he can make his estimated time frame, he should be done sometime late this wk or early next.

I was watching a WatchJRGo video on YT recently. I follow his series already, but he’s just bought an 87 944 for $500 and he’s nursing it back to life. In one of the comments, someone suggested he use to locate some part he needed. The site searches salvage yards for your part. I inputted my shark’s info for a windshield and 8 (EIGHT!) locations said they have one. Some even as low as $150. Oh happy day! I call the first on the list (based on mileage from my zip). Yep they have it. Nope, they won’t ship it. 2-8 same story. No one will ship. How does your local windshield shop get their windshields? Is there some windshield fairy who makes them magically appear overnight? There has to be a way to ship a windshield. Regardless, they won’t so I need a plan B. I think about renting a vehicle and going on an epic road trip. However, the closest ones are in the 800-900 mile range (there was one listed in Alaska but I didn’t call them). When budgeting for a Wheeler Dealer trip, I est $225 / day for costs (hotel, gas, food). I would need 4 days based on the mileage traveled and when you get the cost of the rental and windshield thrown into the equation (some in the $300-500 range), you’re looking at around $1100. Porsche of Omaha wants $1300 for a new one delivered by Stuttgart's windshield fairy. May have to bite the $1300 bullet.

I was at the dentist on Thu and reconnecting with the office people after the quarantine. They asked me what I was working on and I said the shark, but I was having a hard time finding a windshield. One of the ladies suggested a local shop in an OMA suburb. I called them Fri but they couldn’t help. I decided to go thru the list of windshield shops locally as the only one I’d tried was Safelite. Obviously got a lot of NOs, but one guy says he’ll contact some of his buddies on the east coast and see if they have one. Since we’re talking about windshield shops, I imagine the windshield fairy will be able to do her magic if one is located. Fingers crossed.

My friend with the red 928 emailed me photos from the 928 shop manuals on how to remove a sunroof. Getting the headliner out is step 1 and almost the hardest. It’s held onto the sunroof by 3 screws that are very small and recessed back in the sunroof just beyond my hand’s length. I loosened them and then removed them with mechanical fingers. Not looking fwd to putting them back in when reassembling. The sunroof comes off next and is held in place by 4 bolts in front and 2 screws on the side runners. I pull 3 screws per rail, raise the rail and pull the header bar out (it keeps the sunroof sliding even). Use the crank to move the cables fwd. Houston, we have a problem.

The cable on the passenger side has a pin missing. This pin connects to the sunroof and is used to move it fwd and back. I locate a used one and it arrived Wed. It takes a bit of finagling to get the two sides to line up even when you put the transmission back in but I finally get them to line up properly. I’ve cleaned the tracks and the guide cables move freely. I drop the sunroof back in for a test run. It seems a bit tight half way in but I get it to go. When I return it to closed, there’s a tiny scratch on the exterior. Ouch. Obviously, a bit to high. I play with the adjustments and think I’ve got it nailed. The sunroof moves freely open and closed. I ground down the offending extra protruding part of the bolt that caused the scratch. This is what it looked like before surgery.

After I removed the sunroof headliner, the underside looked like this.

Obviously Red Green had worked on it. The leather ends had curled up and the duct tape was used to hold them down, except the duct tape eventually curled too. After removing the old duct tape and the glue it left behind, I superglued the leather ends down and then took the Dremel and lightly ground the edge down. Now looks like this.

I did this work while I waited for the cable to arrive. Now that the sunroof is moving properly, I decided to attempt to put the headliner back in. Had to wrestle with it a bit but got it back in place. Now all I had to do was put those 3 impossible screws back in. Attempted the 1st one but had a moment of clarity – maybe I better check what the sunroof looks like from the outside before I put the headliner permanently in and cover up the adjustment bolts. Good thing I did because it looked low all around. I played with the adjustments and got it to look better but it’s still a tad low.

I think it’s time to put the motor back in and do a test run regardless. Get it all back together and all plugged in. Hit the switch… Nothing. Dang, the switch & motor worked before I took it out. I get the fuse box diagram out and track down the sunroof fuse. A bit oxidized but good. Take the motor out and about to get into serious diagnostics. Then it hits me – I didn’t have the key in the ignition and turned to the ON position. DOH! I put the motor back in and try this time with the ignition ON. The sunroof opens about 2 inches and then stops but the motor keeps running. I think the plastic gear in the trans that converts the motor motion into cable gear motion is stripped. Think that probably happened when the sunroof was jammed closed. The trans works with the sunroof tool because the tool connects directly to the metal gear on the trans that moves the cables. So I found a trans from my new buddy in the ATL. He’s dropping it into the mail tomorrow, prob here by the end of the week. Project on hold, but I can work on the adjustments and crank it by hand. Do I look $50 lighter?

Tomorrow my new window switches are scheduled to arrive. I took a chance by ordering a pair w/o doing any electrical tests on the current ones. There’s a very high percentage chance the switches are the problem as RL is filled with threads of people having to replace theirs. Not a robust design. Also included in my order from our site sponsor is an odometer gear, so tearing my dash apart is also on the agenda. That will be a tufor as I need to check / test the electrical connections of the wire loom connectors into the dash. I currently only have the gas gauge working and RL searching says that’s probably because the connectors are not passing current to the dash gauges. The dash pod moves up and down with the adjustable steering wheel and one solution to the no working gauges is to slam the dash pod up and down several times to make the connections work. Reminds me of a story my mom tells. Back in the late 70s we had a 76 Mercury Marquis and Ford products during this era had a tendency for the automatic transmission to only go part way into park, resulting in your car rolling away. Our Merc would do this occasionally. My folks were on vacation in South Dakota and the trans had the half into park situation. Mom said dad started shoving the trans handle violently back and forth many times. She said people were walking by and looking aghast at my dad in his fit of rage. But it went into park afterwards. If only dad was here to see if he could fix my 928.
GPRPCA Chief Driving Instructor
2008 Boxster S Limited Edition #005
2008 Cayman S Sport - Signal Green
1989 928 S4 5 spd - black
1987 928 S4 - Granite Green Metallic (Felsengrun)

Last edited by husker boxster; 06-07-2020 at 08:52 PM.
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