Reserved a pickup truck, car trailer and motel/hotel rooms for the trip. Looking forward to it.
A few weeks ago I had sudden lose of vision in my left eye, diagnosed with detached retina and needed emergency eye surgery. So far recovery has been moving along well but as you can imagine my vision has been adversley affected and haven't been able to drive. I do have some upcoming eye exams, My girlfriend has never driven a truck and trailer, so if I feel confident in my vision I will bring the Trabant, Otherwise I will be chauffered in Detroit iron!
see you in a few weeks!
You are braver than I am Michael!
I won't be attending this year. Several issues. Dad said he was either not interested, or could not go this year. I wanted my parents to come along for "moral support" because my wife has no experience in pulling a trailer and need an experienced backup driver in case something happens (to me). I'm trying to look out for my wife and daughter. The doctor says I have a condition called Meiner's disease in my left ear and for the most part does not cause me any problems but flares up about a couple of times a year. The only thing I can think of that triggers this is if I get really nervous or stressed out.
That's why I had to bail out at the last minute in 2014 because it hit me the day before I was to leave.
Last year something happened and I started getting dizzy after circling the block about five times looking for the elementary school (only to find out I was actually circling around the school itself!) I stopped the van and told Dad I was getting dizzy and he was going to have to drive for me. About 30 seconds later, I passed out in the passenger seat. I'm not sure if it was where I hadn't eaten anything that day or the stress of driving through DC or what.
I hate to sound like a woos guys but driving through large metropolitan cites is really my only phobia. Just like some people are afraid of spiders and snakes or are claustrophobic.
Maybe I need to buy this book to figure out how to deal with it:
Also my 18 year old van, going on 143,000 miles. I have this "concern" that the transmission is about to crap out based on some recent behaviors..
A couple of weeks ago we went on a day trip to Sevierville/Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg area to pick up a trash compactor (totally irrelevant I know). I personally have zero interest in this place (other than The Workshop tool store) but got a killer deal on the trash compactor for $65. Had to drive 100 miles down there and deal with all the tourist traffic to get it but was well worth the trip.
We stopped to get something to eat and when I got back in, the van wanted to "lurch" or slightly jerk at very low speeds but would run fine at speeds above 5 mph. It did this for about 5 to 10 miles at each red light. Then eventually was fine.
I stopped and checked the ATF. It is not burned but is pretty dark from worn clutch material. I have no idea when the transmission filter was last changed when Dad owned this van and he does not remember so I guess that means too long..
When I got about halfway home we stopped at a red light and I felt something engage or slip a few feet after I pulled out. Kind of like when the freewheel device on a Trabant finally engages when it's starting to crap out. Except with the Trabant it's a horrendous thud felt throughout the car. With the van it's less pronounced. Well guess what most automatics also use sprag clutches!
Then it seemed to do it the other day but just once.
The transmission is not slipping (like a worn clutch on a manual transmission) like I've seen with other automatics going south but more like something was not engaging at times.
I figured my best option was to go ahead and change the filter and see what happens.
Yesterday I dropped the pan (what a god awful mess). Other than friction material that has discolored the transmission fluid, there were no chunks of anything in the pan or filter and a minimal metal shavings stuck to the magnet. Much less than what I've seen with the drain plugs on manual transmissions.
I drilled and installed a drain plug in the pan (why didn't GM put one of these in at the factory??), popped the new filter in, the pan and topped it off with some fresh fluid. I changed the fuel and air filters while I was at it.
So far no symptoms but for some reason the van now sounds quieter because now I can hear a slight exhaust leak I never knew I had!
I'm not sure what that's all about. How could changing a transmission filter cause the transmission to sound quieter? Or was it just my imagination?
If it did crap out, I'd love to find an old donor pickup with a 5 speed and drop it in the van but I don't think the wife would like that since she says she knows how to drive a stick but just doesn't like to....
I think having a 5 speed in a large van would be damn cool! The last van I drove with a stick shift in the floor was an '84 Chevy cargo van.
see you all there...
I built a 2 stroke motorized bicycle just so i can go.
I am booked here as well
See you all next Friday night. Safe Travels everyone
Thanks bro hope to see you all there.
I'm going to be there tomorrow. I'm not driving a Wartburg this year but I still want to see all the Trabants and greet all you guys again. See you there!
What, no closer that you live to DC?
It looks like the weather is going to be nice this year. I would have liked to have made the trip but could not find anybody to help me drive. Hopefully next year.
Anyhow hope you guys have a great time and take lots of photos!
International Spy Museum
some more Parade photos
Courtesy Adam Benko
It was fun seeing the cars and talking to you all again. I met several of you but who is the guy in the striped rugby shirt? Darn I tried to introduce myself to as many as I could but my family was dragging me all over the place.
That is Doc
Glad everybody had a good time. How many cars were there this year?
I wished I could have made it. Dad said he would make sure he would go and help me drive next year.
I was concerned that the transmission was going out on my 150K mile 20 year old van but I put a new transmission filter on it and a drain plug in the pan and have dumped the fluid about three times and it seems to be OK.
How was the parking at the new venue?
I see Robert Dunn from St Louis (and YouTube fame) made it to DC.
Next year, this event is in my plan!
So that's who he is! His Trabi looks great!
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