Thanks guys. The story continues.
So I get back from the camping weekend and call the garage that had just replaced the engine and told them about the engine codes. They said they would call me back. After a couple days and not hearing anything I just drove the van down and dropped it off. Next day I get a call from the garage owner. He hems and haws a bit then tells me that one possible reason for the codes is problems with the catalytic converters. They've tested mine and both have failed. New ones are around $800 each.
Did you ever have one of those moments of absolute clarity where you can actually see into the future? I had one right then and I'm betting some of you who have been in a similar situation have had one too. I'm going to spend a lot of money on this and it's not going fix the problem with the codes.
To be clear, I've no doubt the converters need replaced. The whole exhaust system had me worried for a while. Having dropped around $4500 on the new engine It just hurt to spend another big chunk of change. I really had no confidence that this would clear the codes and would have made a good bet that they had just hooked up something wrong on the engine rebuild.
There's a British saying, "In for Penny, in for a Pound." I was definitely already in for a penny so might as well go for the Pound. Told him to go ahead and replace the complete exhaust system.
Back up on the rack.
Notice the bulge between the muffler and the "Y". It's a flexible fitting that the old exhaust didn't have.
One of the old catalytic converters was so far gone it rattled.
Pick up the van after it's done and pay the bill.
Catalytic converter assy. $870.61
Catalytic converter $845.75
exhaust pipe $141.95
Tail pipe $103.95
Oxygen Sensor X 2 $167.96
Oxygen Sensor X 2 $167.12
Bet you already know how the rest of this goes. Start the van and drive downtown for some carryout. Get the carryout and hop back into the van and guess what. The engine codes are back. Wasn't surprised. Disappointed but not surprised.
Drop the van off the next morning. The entire conversation went like this. "Codes are back."
Took them a few more days but after a couple false leads, they got it figured out. A couple vacuum lines on the engine had been hooked up wrong. One added benefit is I got the emergency brakes fixed for free.
So I bring Hal home to this.
Say "Hello" to my new barn. You know all those tools I've been collecting as this build has progressed? Well the mill I had delivered via huge tow truck caused the garage to reach critical mass. Had to do something. Hence the barn. I had the builder do a modification to the original plans so Hal could fit inside.
There's not enough room in the barn for both the van and and everything I want to put in there but I can use it to work on Hal off the street. With the barn being built, and me paying for it, at the same time as all this was going on with Hal it sometimes felt as if I was just hemorrhaging cash.
That being said, van does run real nice now and I'm back to using it for trips again.
And on the bright side, when I bought the van in 2009 it only cost me $2500 while the Penthouse I had SMB install cost $5000. So for once the van is now officially worth more than the Penthouse top.