1988 Chevrolet Sprint Turbo

Current Status: SOLD
7/13/2003 - The Sprint was sold yesterday. As usual, things never go as planned and this was no exception...

That car was my savior, man
Otherwise known as "How not to sell a 1988 Chevrolet Sprint Turbo"

I recieved an email from a guy stating that he wanted to buy the Sprint and he left his phone number. I have a thing about calling people (I don't like to) so I emailed him back. He seemed to be behind on his email so I bit the bullet and called him. He seemed like a nice guy and we made plans for him to pick up the car.

Against my reccomendations, he was going to drive down from Wisconsin with some friends and drive the car back. Keep in mind this car had 161,000 miles and I hadn't put more than 50 miles on it since I got in in January of 2002. He was determined to drive it back and said that he'd give me a call Saturday morning at 9:00 A.M. and let me know how close he was. Evidently it was a 12 hour drive from his place to mine.

I was awakened Saturday morning by the phone ringing...
"Hello...", I said barely awake.
"Sean, It's me Waldo."
"Hey Waldo, where are you at?"
"Outside your front door."
This is how Saturday started. Waldo and his two friends had left Wisconsin at 7:00 P.M. the night before and driven straight through. They stopped by my place after eating breakfast at "a crappy little ice cream place". I got dressed and went out to show them the car.

Now, something to remember is that this car had always started right up for me every try. That is important because it chose this morning not to start. Waldo and his two friends were mechanics so they took a look at it and found the coil wire had melted off in the connector on the coil side. I apologized for not catching that earlier and drove to the parts store and picked up a complete plug/coil wire set. We installed the new coil wire and gave it a try. It still it didn't fire.

We checked the plugs (brand new, I had just installed them a week ago) and they had plenty of Spark. We pulled off the intake hose and checked the suction from the intake manifold... it was fine so air wasn't a problem. That left one thing... fuel. As I listened more, something didn't sound right. It turns out there wasn't any sound coming from the fuel pump. It evidently had picked that morning to stop working. I was feeling pretty bad at this point since those guys had driven 12 hours straight to get this car. Waldo said he really wanted the car and asked me call around and price out a fuel pump. I found one that was 15 minutes away for $98.

Waldo said that he really wanted the car, and if it took putting a new fuel pump in the car then he was going to do it. In case you didn't know, this car has an in-tank fuel pump that requires the gas tank to be removed in order for the pump to be replaced. I told him I'd take $200 off the allready low price of $500 to account for the price of the pump and a little extra. His friends then drove to the parts store and Waldo started pulling the tank.

An hour later the tank was sitting in driveway with the new pump installed. It then took almost two more hours to get the tank put back into the car. I was impressed... these guys had all the tools they needed and knew what they were doing. After all that work, Waldo turned on the key and we heard the reassurring sound of the fuel pump running. He then turned the key all the way and the Sprint sprang to life belching only a small amount of smoke. Waldo then gave me the cash and took off in the Sprint with his friends following in their rental car. About 15 minutes later I noticed he had left his laptop in the garage so I called his cell and let him know. They came back and picked it up and left for Wisconsin again. I was wondering if I would ever hear from him again.

This morning at 10:33 A.M. I did.
"Hello", I said after picking up the phone. I was fully awake this time.
"Sean, it's me Waldo. That car was my savior, man."
Waldo then went on to explain that a few miles outside of Kansas City (3 hours away) the rental car had died. It was a late model (99-03) Taurus. They got it towed to the rental car place and waited 4 hours for the rental company to get them a replacement car. The rental company kept giving them the run around but they had to be back the next day for work so they all piled in to the Sprint. He said they drove it back to Wisconsin averaging over 80MPH the entire way without any problems.

That just proves the old saying... one mans junk is another man's savior.

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Last modified: 01/01/2012 @ 06:25 am