Wednesday, May 21, 2014

The Mighty Corolla was Sold; Hail the Groovy Ranger!

About three weeks ago I sold the Mighty Corolla to a Fairfax County Sheriff's deputy for $3500. It had 153000 miles on it. Carmax said it would pay me $3000 for it, so getting $3500 was a pleasant enough bonus. He paid me with 34 hundred dollar bills and two fifties.

Yesterday, I used $1850 of that cash to buy a 1995 Ford Ranger, as shown in the nearby picture. It has a 4 cylinder motor, 5 speed manual transmission, and apparently an old smell of faint cigarette smoke (I can't smell anything, but my nose doesn't work as well as some of the women I am married to). It allegedly has a new clutch and timing belt and spark plug wires. The tires look good. It runs pretty good, too. The AC is not entirely working but seems to put out cool air about half the time. There's a junction in the exhaust pipe where a gasket is rotted out so under all but the mildest acceleration it sounds loud and obnoxious.

The Ranger still had the original window sticker that claimed 28 mpg highway. I refueled on my way home last night and reset the trip meter, so in a week or so I'll have my first piece of data to see how well this truck has held up.

We made the switch because we foresee the need to move large piles of mulch, dirt, rocks, and lumber in the near future. In a couple years we'll be taking kids to college. In the fall we'll have a third driver. Yes, much of this can be accomplished with the world's fastest minivan, but it's a pain to remove and re-install the heavy, awkward seats in the middle. Plus it makes a mess in the inside of the minivan. So somehow I convinced the family that this was a smart course of action.

Fun fact: this is the first vehicle in my married life that my wife specifically instructed me to leave her name off the title and registration.

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