Archive for January, 2016

A clever trade

It eventually dawned on me that having 145 and 122 wagons and no dedicated winter car was a bit redundant. Even though I was determined to drive Sadie through the season after a thorough winterization (with the 145 as backup) it seemed like I needed to make a change. What could I do? I’ve had Sadie the 122 since 1997 so I could never sell her. And who would give me what the 145 is worth in the middle of winter? The answer was right before my eyes- trade the 145 to my friend Jesse for his hotrod  ’92 240 wagon and some cash.  

so long you handsome devil

 Jesse had lusted after the 145 for a while so it was an easy decision for him.   

Jim’s new whip

 Jesse put a ton of work in the 240:

  • 5-speed conversion
  • IPD exhaust
  • VX cam
  • Billie HDs all around
  • Front lowering springs
  • 780 Bertone v6 wheels with recent tires and a full set of Firestone Winterforce on steelies
  • New belts, T-belt & tensioner and front brakes
  • Recent head gasket (was leaking out the side)
  • Cloth interior with matching headrest pads and armrest
  • Power mirrors
  • Immuminated window switches from a 960
  • Big ’89 matte black tach
  • Clock and economy gauge
  • Blue cargo cover

All it needed was cosmetic TLC and a few odds and ends- polish, trim blackening, washer nozzles unplugged, and a bit of exhaust welding. I also chopped 1.5 coils off the stock rear springs to match the lowering springs out front because Jesse hadn’t gotten around to that yet.   
 This combo actually gives a great ride.    Minky and Ryan helped with the polishing. 

 And Minky and I tackled the blackening using Forever Black.  

   The yellowed headlights got a restoration and black eyebrows.  
 I’m very pleased to have a classy ride for the winter. But more importantly the 145 got a wonderful new home in Somerville. And with the cash I picked up a 69.5 Citroen DS21, but more on that in the next post.  



164 in 2015

Guest post by Tim. It has been almost a year exactly since ODV has reported on the Burg, the wayward Triumph of Hope Over Experience Volvo 164. So what has happened to it since then?



After a slumber under a car cover won a Swedish Car Day ’14, a little air in the tires and it was ready to roll for some upgrades and repairs.


It was still on the tire/rims (and hubcaps) from a 145, and I just didn’t think they looked all that good.

2015-04-12 09.10.42.jpg

A set of steel 240 rims, painted glossy black was just the ticket.


Much better!


One of the first adventures for 2015 was to take a trip back to where I purchased it from to show the former owners that it was in fact up and running.


That same weekend saw the 164 in a small car show at eEuro parts HQ in Connecticut. A lot of neat Swedish steel there that day. I managed to pick up some bargain basement parts (including a pristine 140 shit lever and knob that also fit the 164), and an assortment of other 140/160 parts that may, or may not have been suitable for my car. But for cents on the dollar, it made sense.


May saw the addition of a new face to the family: Malwig.


Pending an 800 mile road trip to Carslisle for the Import and Kit Car show, we decided to take care of a grinding noise coming from the right front. Turns out the bearings that I bought at the eEuro car show for $1 each (regularly in ~$10 each) were a perfect fit. And no more noise!


Packed up and ready to go, against many better judgement. TOHOE!


I was proud of the 164 for having made it all the way down (and back) without any major issues. She looked good out there on the show field!


Memorial Day brought a vain attempt at bringing the burgundy paint back to life. A lot of effort for little results, sadly.


July included a few small local road trips.


Reports of a 164 in a MA junkyard brought us to Greenpeace. It was a ’75, but there were many parts that I could use. Too bad about that drivers side fender, it was rust free.


I grabbed as many small parts from the engine bay as possible, figuring that I was bound to get something that worked, or could work.


I also grabbed the passenger side front fender that was also mostly rust free.


I was also happy to have grabbed this rubber boot that covered the e-brake handle.


The B30 wasn’t running quite right, and our valiant efforts at adjusting the valves and other work didn’t do much to quell the stumbling and stuttering.


The Burg, Fridgewig and Malwig looking good on the show field.

It needed to be running though, because August was the High Holy days of Volvo-dom: Swedish Car Day at the Larz Anderson museum in Brookline, MA.



The Burg wasn’t the only 164 on the field that day. I was happy to see two others, even if it meant that I didn’t have the best (and worst) 164 there. Just the worst.


The opportunity to buy a complete (but non-running) 164 reared it’s ugly head, and I took the plunge.


Hanging out with Handsome Boy, the 145 in the rain.


After much beer, discussion and more beer, the poorly running B30 was diagnosed with an old and tired fuel pump. A few dollars and days later, a new pump was in my hands and ready to go.


Almost looks like I knew what I was doing.


Unfortunately, the new fuel pump was putting out the correct PSI, and the old and tired fuel pressure regulator that had worked in conjunction with the old and tired fuel pump gave up the ghost.


This was the only time that the Burg has ever left me stranded.


A new regulator was installed, and a fitting for a test gauge was also plumbed in.


With such warm temperatures in the Northeast in the December of 2015, the Burg kept on rolling along. I even had the change to celebrate Christmas with the 164!


The Burg made the trek to upstate New York (~700 miles round trip) without missing a beat.


My brother-in-law even took a turn behind the wheel.


So there we have 2015 for the Burg. It was an exciting year, and I’m happy to report that there are many plans for 2016 to make it even better, including a return trip to Carlisle, suspension work and possibly some bodywork. Stay tuned, this Old Dead Volvo isn’t quite dead yet!