Rear-View Mirror

-Bill C. -

This time last month, I was recovering from surgery. This month I am doing heart bypass surgery on Lightning (again); a flattened cam. Why me? I guess to give me something to write and whine about. Sometimes, other people’s problems make us feel lucky to miss some of these “experiences.” I’m all about that.

Before I go any further, I want to thank Ron S. for following me and Lightning part way home; and Mark H. for escorting me ALL the way to the house, after last month’s meeting. It started out on the way to the meeting with some idling problems, which I took as an omen of ill things to come. By the time I drove the 20 miles home, it was a different set of problems all together.

You have heard all the stories about limping home on 3 cylinders. Well, would you believe TWO cylinders? When the cam “went south,” the intake valves for #1 & #3 cylinders were not opening. So, the 2 good cylinders had to fight the compression of the other two, and so on. Lightning’s heart could only say “Blaaaaaa-aaaahhh.”

No, I am not smart enough to know that “Blaaaaa-aaahhh = flattened cam lobe.” It was after several evenings of eliminating fuel and ignition possibilities that I dug in further. Now, it’s just a matter of paying for more parts and doing some “sweat equity.” I will be sure to bring the culprit to our meeting for “show & tell time.” By the way, other than the case, the cam was the only mechanical part that was re-used on my engine build of a couple years ago. Now I know; you don’t mix used with new when it comes to cams & lifters. Forgive me, for I have sinned! I’m so glad that I didn’t get a chance to take Chris L. up on his grudge match challenge. Ha!

Speaking of which, I hear some strong rumors that the CAVF Club (Cent. AR) is holding their spring show at the drag strip in Centerville, AR, which I believe is south of Russellville. I do not have the details, but it is suppose to be on April 18. And I have even seen a note about some “racing” (?)! This could be an interesting change!

Speaking of change, have you heard the latest regarding The Real Source and Rocky Mountain Motorworks? The Real Source has BOUGHT Rocky Mountain Motorworks (RMM)! Check out either of their web sites ( or ). The Real Source is moving RMM’s entire inventory to their Effingham, IL location over the coming weeks. Now a word FOR our sponsors; you like being able to buy most of your VW parts locally? Be sure to support Roy Rogers; and tell them you’re in the club; that you would appreciate “help” on the prices. They are good folks.

Finally, before I turn off my wind machine; just a reminder that full (dues paying) members have the option of receiving this newsletter via email in Adobe Reader (.pdf) format, in full color. Just email me and I will convert you over. This saves printing and postage, of course. You also have the option of switching back to paper if you desire.

Hope to see you at our meeting.

Air (?) Bill