Bunker balderdash day 193

Mt Bromo, Java, 1989. See the words made from rocks down there? People climb down the steep slope onto the floor of an active volcano. More foolish than me. © PJ Croft 2020

What a dull, grey day. Not cold, but not warm either.


I subscribe to Crikey.com.au (and I wish you would too, in the interests of supporting independent media). As a subscriber I can make comments, and they tell me that if I wish to comment anonymously, they’ve allocated me a nom de plume, Aged Crock. How appropriate. I like it. I think I’ll use it elsewhere too.


I arranged for a mobile mechanic to come here today to get four small jobs done on the Honda MDX. He arrived four hours late, but at least they kept me informed that he’d be late.

The jobs were: 1. replace the throttle position sensor; 2. change the brake light switch; 3. install the new driver’s side rear door power locking mechanism; and 4. pull the roof lining down and reseat the connector to the roof mounted antenna.

Luckily, it was all done in half an hour so it only cost me 0,5hr labour plus the callout fee of $89, so all up it cost $160. (The guy said he lives in Butler, so that’s handy.)

But I only got half what I wanted.

  1. the throttle problem was not due to the part I thought it was. When I pointed to the firewall mounted part that I had the replacement for, he said no, that’s for the cruise control. Huh? I don’t understand, I have the diagrams from the manual showing it, naming it. But he pulled the air inlet off the inlet manifold and operated and lubricated the butterfly valve with CRC. He reconnected it and Bob’s your uncle, away she went. It wasn’t the part after all.
    That’s $70 wasted on the part, but I’m glad it was so simple.
  2. the brake light switch was an easy job. I had to persuade him to put my new one in but he did. At least that eliminates one suspect in it intermittently dropping out of cruise. It was a cheap part so even if it’s not the problem, it’s only $12.
  3. that damned door lock. He had the bright idea of seeing if it would actuate when it was still out of the door. It wouldn’t! This is a new part from Amazon. Damn. He noticed that there are no pins in one of the connectors – that could be a good reason. So now I’m back to dismantling this brand new part to see why there are no connections. Damn! I’m sick of this job. It should be easy but it stymies me every time.
  4. finally, the radio antenna problem. He was able to pull the roof lining down and he (but not I) could see the connector on the roof antenna. He said it was properly seated. He got a piece of wire and used that as an antenna – no improvement! It seems that there really is a break in the cable somewhere in the roof or the loom down through the pillar and into the back of the dash.
    Damn! That’s too hard to fix. It looks as if I’ll have to fit a new antenna on the front guard and feed it through behind the dash, bypassing the car’s antenna completely. That’s the simplest thing to do, but it’ll be another $100 at least as I’ll have to get it professionally fitted. I’m not game to drill through the body as I don’t know where is safe. Grrr.

I think my lawnmower guy will buy the car and as much as I like it, I think I should sell it to him. I’m tired of all these little problems. They’re not serious, just annoying.

That means I’ll have to put the original Honda radio/CD changer back in. I don’t want to part with the Pioneer AV unit I bought and installed. The original is fine.


Anyway, I want to buy my next car:

Peugeot 407 Wagon. Six cylinder 2.7l diesel. Every luxe item, leather, cruise, power sunroof. The rear window opens up independently of the tailgate.

I just love the styling. Most of them are priced at about $4,500 – $8,000. There’s one in Perth, a 2011 model, for $6,000. I’ve made an enquiry.



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