Mazdaspeed in shop

The Speed 3 developed a weird clanking noise when you start the car cold. Since it already has 33,282 miles I figured I better get it taken care of before I hit the end of the 36,000 mile warranty. The good news is they found the problem but had to order 1 of the 5 needed parts and the order takes a week. Probably has to fly in from Japan. 😦 This means I have to go back again to get the actual problem finally fixed. I also had them rotate the tires while they had it there.

While picking up the car I got the obligatory, while we were rotating your tires we noticed you need new front brake pads and rotors. I immediately knew what that meant, wait for it, wait for it, I know I’m going to get the same line I got when I had the Trans Am. “Unfortunately, these Speed 3 pads are not cheap, you’re looking at $275 for the pads, $180 for the rotors, and 1 hour of labor.” It was all I could do to keep from laughing at her. Like I would let the dealer do my brakes.Ten years ago Pontiac told me the Trans Am pads were $110 a pair, I found Performance Friction pads for $49 which were better than the AC/Delcos.  A quick search today found Mazdaspeed 3 brand for $193 (still way to much for my tastes) and Hawk brands for $84.  So I know I can find them much cheaper than $275.  Then I’ll save the labor costs by doing it myself.

Weekend projects

This weekend I changed the oil in both the Grand Caravan and the Mazdaspeed 3. I used Mobil 1 for both vehicles. While under the van I noticed that the power steering bypass hose the dealer put on a few months ago was hanging below the frame in what looked like a dangerous situation.

I ended up zip tying the hose to the frame to keep it out of danger, the thought of ripping out the power steering hose seemed like a bad idea 😉

The other project I did this weekend was to replace the Kenmore 1/3 hp disposal with a new Kenmore 3/4hp disposal. The installation was pretty easy, I only ran into one issue, the drain hose for the dishwasher was cracked, so I had to run to Lowe’s to get a replacement. I was almost done putting it back too.

The disposal wasn’t ‘disposing’ very well, and the rubber seal at the top was completely malformed and didn’t cover up the drain very well. Plus it was just time for a new one. Here is the old one before I ripped it out:

The new Kenmore 3/4 hp disposal ready for installation.

Everything is out, time to start the installation of the new disposal.

ALL DONE! So far no leaks, and it works pretty well. I’ll monitor it for the next few days to make sure we don’t start leaking.


Are you a Spacewalk user? Have you wished you could easily get in contact with the Spacewalk development team or other Spacewalk user? Then you want to use SpaceTALK 🙂 I spent the last two nights coding up the chat feature in Spacewalk. When you click the banner or the Chat menu in the Help section, a new window is opened with a web-based IRC client on freenode. You will be presented a dialog asking for your freenode nick and preselected #spacewalk IRC channel. There you can interact with the Spacewalk community to get help, share your knowledge, or just come hangout.

You can get access to the feature in the git repository (master). It should appear in the nightly repos sometime tomorrow.

Now here are the obligatory screenshots:

chat menu and chat banner
Connect screen
IRC window showing #spacewalk

When 15% off is not 15% off

I got my weekly email flyer today and saw they had a great 15% off sale on all hard drives. I thought it would be worth looking into. But I noticed that a $119 1.5TB hard drive came up to $109. Hrm that’s not 15%, that’s only 11.9% what gives.

I go re-read the ad to make sure it wasn’t specific brands or types of hard drives, that’s when I noticed the restrictions “maximum of $10”. What in the world? maximum of $10? Why would they say 15% off then? Just make it a $10 coupon. UGH. This pains me a lot because I’m a HUGE fan of, and hate to see such silly ads from them.