Fuel Injected Freedom: Justy

img_6583This update is a little overdue, mostly thanks to a harsh winter that buried my town in multiple heavy snowfalls, and a few inches of solid ice one day which broke pretty much every tree in town. I wasn’t able to work on my cars much since we had snow on the ground for two and a half months and the temperature rarely got above 40 F. But spring is coming, and with it another season of tinkering with cars.

My Porsche has been immobile since before I swapped the engine a year ago, and while it’s mostly put together and ready to drive again, it still isn’t running. Which you might expect after yanking out the entire engine and putting a different one in. As I write this, it’s at the foreign car shop for electrical work, and I’ll write another update when I can finally drive it again. This post is about my third vehicle, which is also red like my truck and Porsche. I’ve owned ten red vehicles out of 29 total, which seems kind of excessive.

Late last year I picked up a 1991 Subaru Justy with minor front end damage for $400, the first vehicle I’ve owned that was made the same year as me. It runs and drives and the 4wd system works, so I did get to drive it around a little in the snow. However, it had several issues.

As usual, I started with easy things. The hatch struts were dead and it came with a new pair, so I installed those. Using a heavy duty ratcheting strap and my truck as an anchor, I straightened the damaged area enough to install the replacement headlight and turn signal. I also removed the hood, put it on the curb, and jumped on it to make it as straight as I could. After half an hour of fiddling, I managed to get the latch and everything working normally despite the damage.


I had some fun customizing the car with other things I already had, like a roof rack, some pirate-themed decals from a previous project that didn’t pan out, and a piece of old carpet from the Portland airport.


The car came with tiny spare tires in the front, so I ordered a new set of steel wheels and got used snow tires for a couple and now I can actually drive it around. There are still issues of sloppy steering and a worn out clutch (it came with new clutch parts), and it needs another pair of tires for the rear, so I’ll have plenty to do over the summer.


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