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Discussion Starter #1
I picked up my '90 HB Reg 4-cyl 5-spd with 53k miles in March while selling cars here in Plattsburgh, NY. I bought it for fuel economy (29 on the highway) and hell, it was $600. There is relatively few things that can go wrong with it. No A/C, no Airbags, no Auto-tranny, no ABS, no Power Steering. Here is what I do have to work on, in order of priority:

1a. Flush Coolant. It looks like diarrhea in there. It is probably the original stuff. Driving up the 5 miles straight of mountains to get to my mother-in-laws makes the temp gauge go over half-way when it is normall at 1/4th.
1b. Brakes need to be replaced, like yesterday.
2. E-brake cable has slack so the light stays on after releasing it.
3. Replace the particle board aftermarket radio mount with the plastic kit. As this truck originially didn't have a radio either.
4. Replace or repair the driver's side door which has a rust through hole the size of a baseball.

I just got a new job as a prison guard and will be driving 400 or so miles per week for training. I want to get all but 3 & 4 done before I leave on the 12th. Additionally, when on the highway, how safe is 70 mph? It seems like that little engine wants nothing to do with that speed. I keep it around 55-60 mph.

Anyway, hello everyone.
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)

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Hardbody Freak
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do not flush radiator with tap water as this will oxidize the inside and cause it to clog..

tune ups are the best place to start.

it sounds like you need to replace the thermostat .

the brakes are very easy start with the front first as they wear out 2 or 3 times faster than rear.

the e brake has a spring down under neath the truck by the adjuster .

check for spring and only adjust after brake job..

the rattle on start up is a tel tale sign of the timing chain guides are broke or damaged
replace the timing chain quickly or you chance hurting the engine beyond repair..

at lot of time the clunk is the cross member underneath the engine ..tighten it first

depending on your location a whole door can be bought used for a bout 100.oo dollars
 

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Discussion Starter #4
What would I accomplish by replacing a thermostat? Being a novice, I, of course first thought the one for heat, not the one you are talking about.

I found a door for $150, the problem is that is is 45 minutes and a $25 ferry ride away.

Thanks for the info! I can always use the help.

:newbie:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Haynes Manual, Thermostat and Gasket, Front Pads, Timing Chain guides (both loose and tight sides) so far only up to $100. I remember someone mentioning that you need a special tool for the brakes, AutoZone rents those correct?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I am going to give it all a shot tomorrow morning, bright and early. A friend is helping me, thankfully, and we are using all of his tools :). I am still wondering what people have found to be a comfortable cruising speed on the highway with their HB 4-cyl.
 

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Hardbody Freak
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i have the z24 engine in my truck so it has a little different power range.,
also i am 66 yo so i always drive 5 miles inder posted limits..

the ka engine has a little more hp than the z trucks and a lighter frame to give it a little more use of the extra power..

70mph is perfectly safe given your truck is sound..

if you do the timing chain ..note that the oil pump timing is a part of the proceedure that alot of guys overlook and not do right.

so do that part twice ..as a practice to get it right..
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I only was able to get less than one gallon of antifreeze in after changing the thermostat. I got it hot, and let it cool again still no more room in there. I thought maybe I didn't get it all out initially but the temperature gauge sure said a different story.

I broke a sway bar in the front, that is what the clunking was. I started to take the right front lug nuts off only to find that all of them are cross threaded after snapping one clean off. I am going to take it to the dealership I work and and see if someone will hook me up fixing the studs/nuts, sway bar and brakes. Also, if they can get more coolant in there.
 

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Hardbody Freak
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you mean the stealership..

well if they get to expensive for you pm me ,i have the sway bar.
also lugnuts can be bought at autozone and are relatively ez to get out an back in..

good luck and keep us in formed ..

thanks
 

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Discussion Starter #12
So after PB Welding the hell out of the nuts for the past 24 hours, I was able to get them off. I got the brakes apart and now I cannot put them back together. I have the pads, shims, and retainer off. I cannot figure out how to get them all back with the retainer on the top and bottom, and the pads in between. The Haynes manual is good if you sort of have a clue. I don't so I am rather frustrated at this point. It looks like I am going to hold tight and hope a buddy of mine can help tomorrow, if not, it looks like it will be going to the shop on Monday, with the driver's side brake missing.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Front disc, driver's side is what I am currently working on.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I haven't even got that far, I can't figure out how to put the retainers in around the pads and shims. It seems like they need to be in there first, and then put the pads in.
 

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Hardbody Freak
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the chome kinda h pattern peices that go at the top and bottom of the calipers..
are these the things you are taling about.

if so take the other side wheel off and look at those.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Those are exactly what I am talking about. I guess I need to clarify my use of the word "how". I know where they are supposed to go, I just can't for the life of me get them in there. I can place those, then attempt to put the pads in to no avail, they wont fit. Or if I put the pads in first, there is no chance in hell I'm squeezing those little metal things in there.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I never thought about that. I am in Northern, NY where rust is a factor. Where can I post a picture of this rig for posterity. It will be an hour or so before the wife is back from grocery shopping. Once she's back, I'll get out there and see if I can't manage to get it together. How do I make sure the caliper is all the way in (once I get there).
 
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