You're Not The Only One (A Thread About Fails)

I shared pictures in the camping section the other day. What I didn't point out is that if you enlarge the picture and look above the front window, you will see the aftermath of my dumb ass deciding that I could fit between two trees the picture. I was very surprised how well my wife held her composure. I guess she still loves me after 16 years.

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OK, a fairly mild one here. A friend and I installed an OME 2.5" lift and an Anti-Rock in my LJ, I was really stoked that we had gotten it done in only a couple of hours. Headed for a local trail, took lots of pics. Yep, things were going great. It took me two weeks to notice that I had installed the tow hooks backwards. I couldn't even blame my buddy, 'cause I handled that part all by myself...

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I had installed the tow hooks backwards.
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I bared my soul and confessed my worst stupidity...like reinstalling my transmission seven times because the stupid transmission shop couldn't figure out how to rebuild an AX-15...and all you've got is tow hooks?

-Mac

P.S. Still a good one and bonus points for photographic evidence!
 
I bared my soul and confessed my worst stupidity...like reinstalling my transmission seven times because the stupid transmission shop couldn't figure out how to rebuild an AX-15...and all you've got is tow hooks?

-Mac

P.S. Still a good one and bonus points for photographic evidence!

I tried, man, I really tried! OTOH, you really don't want to get me started on my Adventures In Woodworking....
 
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I rushed a quick oil change and plugs. Know better than to put plugs in with a socket but was in a hurry. Spun it a few times... plug felt tight so called it done. Must have been spinning loose, then cross threaded. Driving down the highway shortly after sounded like a shotgun blast went off in cab. Blew a plug, punched through my ignition coil. Trying to save 5 min cost me an afternoon, new coil, and a pair of undies. Luckily this group helped me identify and solve the problem
 
Did something similar on a '75 Chevy Station Wagon. Popped the U-Joint off the transmission, and of course it starts to roll. Bear in mind that I had this car up on RAMPS! It started to roll, I grabbed the driveshaft with everything I had to stop it, which SOMEHOW worked, and hollered at the guy that was helping me to grab a brick and shove it under a tire. He did so before my strength gave out, and I lived to tell another one.

I did it the other way. I had a rig on ramps installing the rear driveshaft. Unfortunately, I had the rig pointing slightly downhill with a fence in front of it on 4 ramps. To line up the rear shaft in the pinion, it was in neutral. Got the joint in, bolts all in, tightening the last one, I failed to notice that as I was tightening, I was also turning the pinion in the direction that would drive the tires off of the ramps which I managed to do as I was tightening the last bolt. It scooted down the ramps, I swung my legs to the middle of the rig out of the way of the tires, wrapped my arms around an axle tube and just went for a short painless but terrifying drag along until it hit the fence a few feet away. Nothing damaged except my ego for being so dumb.
 
Jeep related.

Changing ujoints on the rear drive shaft. Didn't set parking break. Didn't chock the wheels. Couldn't get the driveshaft free. Pounding on it figured it was just rust related because EVERYTHING is rust related in Maine. Finally pops free. And the Jeep starts to roll. Use my body as a chock block yell for my oldest boy (11 yrs old at the time) He comes running out. Tries to push the jeep off me. Finally hears me and jumps in the jeep and stands on the brake. I climb out from under the Jeep and he is practically quivering. He had a death grip on the steering wheel and his whole body on the brake. Poor kid was worried that Pops was going to get crushed.

Just installed my lift. Everything torqued. Did an alignment. Went for a test drive. Major death wobble over 25mph. Get home go over the check list. Everything is done. Finally after checking a few things. Torque wrench was broken. Most stuff was only torqued to 50ish% of what it should be. New Torque wrench. Everything good.

I got as far as your post in this thread thinking "Oh, I've got a good one from just a few weeks ago." Instead, now I'm thinking: "Thank God, I'm not the only one!" I did the exact same thing two weeks ago. Trying to hunt down a chirping sound that I could hear every time I came off the gas, I spent half an hour under the Jeep tightening things, trying to shake things, looking for loose bolts, etc. Finally decided it must be the rear drive shaft. How can I test that theory? Why don't I just remove it, put the Jeep in 4wd, and go for a spin? Made perfect sense. What DIDN'T make sense was removing the rear drive shaft on a slightly pitched driveway, no chocks, no parking brake set, Jeep in 2wd. It started rolling, I "used my body as a chock block" as you said, only I didn't have an 11 year old around so I had to roll the rear passenger wheel backwards with my foot to re-align the drive shaft enough to get a bolt back in it. Shockingly that worked, and I swore I'd never tell a soul.... but here we are, and you're not the only one.

As a bonus, a few years back I had the Jeep on jack stands while swapping axles. I encountered an especially stubborn bolt somewhere on the front driver's knuckle. After fighting with it for what felt like an hour, I put my 3/4 ratchet on it and pushed forward with my leg/foot. Maximum force, right? It almost worked, too, but instead the Jeep rocked forward on the jack stands and ALMOST fell onto my leg. It was about 10 o'clock at night on the third day of long hours, and I immediately packed it up and took the next day off to think about the time I almost dropped a Jeep on my leg with no phone nearby and nobody anywhere that would've heard me yelling. Never told anyone about that one either...

Great thread idea, @Reh3d !
 
Anyone ever lost a wheel because you didn't tighten the lugs correctly? Me neither. Definitely not twice.

First time I was on I-10 3 hours from home on New Year's Eve heading to my then girlfriend's house in San Antonio. Heard a loud bang, looked out the driver's window, and the wheel/tire was at my eye level spinning at a few hundred RPMs. It made it almost a mile down the road while I wrestled the Jeep off to the side on 3 wheels and 1 rotor. Hitched to the next exit and, by some miracle, found an auto parts store where I could at least buy new lugs. Rolled the wheel back to the Jeep, spent an hour trying to coax the lug bolts back into the rotor and get them seated while I put the wheel on, and limped along on a rotor with a flat side.

Second time was worse. Finished dual axle swaps and steering upgrade ON MY BIRTHDAY and was so excited to get to my party and show everyone that I didn't torque the damn lugs down... aaaaaaagain. I only got about 1.5 miles from the house, never over about 20 mph, when the same wheel slipped off. Problem that time was I was mostly blocking a single lane I-10 exit that merged right into where I "parked", rotor sitting on the wheel, and I HAD NO JACK! By the time I assessed the situation, hitched back to the house, and hoofed it back to the Jeep carrying a 25 pound bottle jack, a jack stand, and no pride, a city bus had pulled up behind me that decided it couldn't make it around. I jacked the Jeep up and put the wheel back on while every one of the bus passengers was escorted past me to another bus they brought in.

Learn from me folks... the fear of losing a wheel at highway speed and the anxiety of causing a major traffic jam by your pure stupidity is not worth it.
 
What I've learned from this thread is to always, Always, ALWAYS chock the wheels whenever messing around with the driveshafts or transmission or transfer case or brakes.

Same for a trailer not hitched to a vehicle.

My neighbor got a helicopter ride this summer when his boat got away from him and rolled down the street. He tried to stop it and got smashed against a mailbox, breaking 7 ribs and something in his shoulder, and collapsed both lungs. Fortunately he made a full recovery but we've all told him to just let it go next time if it's just property at stake.

See leaning mailbox on left, boat on right of photo.

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A couple of years ago I replaced the radiator hoses and heater hoses as a pre-emptive maintenance measure. If I count right, that's 8 constant-tension hose clamps to put back in place before refilling with coolant and going for a test drive.

In baseball a 0.875 batting average would be unheard of, beyond spectacular. In hose clamp replacement, not so much...

Fortunately my test drive was short, and I made it back home and was in my driveway when the unclamped hose let loose and dumped all my new coolant on the concrete.
 
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A couple of years ago I replaced the radiator and heater hoses as a pre-emptive maintenance measure. If I count right, that's 8 constant-tension hose clamps to put back in place before refilling with coolant and going for a test drive.

In baseball a 0.875 batting average would be unheard of, beyond spectacular. In hose clamp replacement, not so much...

Fortunately my test drive was short, and I made it back home and was in my driveway when the unclamped hose let loose and dumped all my new coolant on the concrete.

I had something similar, but instead of regular coolant, it was Thermocure which sprayed all over the inside of my engine bay. That stuff is like tar.
 
My torque wrench failed to click when I changed out the clutch. Last bolt got tighter and tighter, then all of the sudden it got loose... oops, stripped the threads out of the flywheel. Drove it like that for a month or two until I got a new clutch and flywheel in (I know I could have helicoiled it) and installed.
 
I did it the other way. I had a rig on ramps installing the rear driveshaft. Unfortunately, I had the rig pointing slightly downhill with a fence in front of it on 4 ramps. To line up the rear shaft in the pinion, it was in neutral. Got the joint in, bolts all in, tightening the last one, I failed to notice that as I was tightening, I was also turning the pinion in the direction that would drive the tires off of the ramps which I managed to do as I was tightening the last bolt. It scooted down the ramps, I swung my legs to the middle of the rig out of the way of the tires, wrapped my arms around an axle tube and just went for a short painless but terrifying drag along until it hit the fence a few feet away. Nothing damaged except my ego for being so dumb.

Picturing this in my head and can't help but giggle
 
Same for a trailer not hitched to a vehicle.

My neighbor got a helicopter ride this summer when his boat got away from him and rolled down the street. He tried to stop it and got smashed against a mailbox, breaking 7 ribs and something in his shoulder, and collapsed both lungs. Fortunately he made a full recovery but we've all told him to just let it go next time if it's just property at stake.

See leaning mailbox on left, boat on right of photo.

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I have personally known 2 people that died because they somehow thought putting their bodies between a rolling tractor and an immovable object would help stop it. The human body always loses.
 
Anyone ever lost a wheel because you didn't tighten the lugs correctly? Me neither. Definitely not twice.

First time I was on I-10 3 hours from home on New Year's Eve heading to my then girlfriend's house in San Antonio. Heard a loud bang, looked out the driver's window, and the wheel/tire was at my eye level spinning at a few hundred RPMs. It made it almost a mile down the road while I wrestled the Jeep off to the side on 3 wheels and 1 rotor. Hitched to the next exit and, by some miracle, found an auto parts store where I could at least buy new lugs. Rolled the wheel back to the Jeep, spent an hour trying to coax the lug bolts back into the rotor and get them seated while I put the wheel on, and limped along on a rotor with a flat side.

Second time was worse. Finished dual axle swaps and steering upgrade ON MY BIRTHDAY and was so excited to get to my party and show everyone that I didn't torque the damn lugs down... aaaaaaagain. I only got about 1.5 miles from the house, never over about 20 mph, when the same wheel slipped off. Problem that time was I was mostly blocking a single lane I-10 exit that merged right into where I "parked", rotor sitting on the wheel, and I HAD NO JACK! By the time I assessed the situation, hitched back to the house, and hoofed it back to the Jeep carrying a 25 pound bottle jack, a jack stand, and no pride, a city bus had pulled up behind me that decided it couldn't make it around. I jacked the Jeep up and put the wheel back on while every one of the bus passengers was escorted past me to another bus they brought in.

Learn from me folks... the fear of losing a wheel at highway speed and the anxiety of causing a major traffic jam by your pure stupidity is not worth it.

@AndyG can relate to this ! but only once because @John Cooper and I were there to make sure it didn't happen again !!!!
 
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I have personally known 2 people that died because they somehow thought putting their bodies between a rolling tractor and an immovable object would help stop it. The human body always loses.

The way he hit it, he definitely didn't know it was there. He was running backward with the tongue in his hands, hit the mailbox, tongue hit him in the chest and then drug across his ribs before continuing down the street and sticking in another neighbors gate post; he fell to his knees and started rolling around on the ground as his 4 year old and terrified wife run to him from across the yard. The owner of the mailbox and the doorbell camera had the sensitivity and discretion not to go showing a bunch of people what could very well have been a man's last moments, so I didn't see it; but my wife did because his wife is...less sensitive and discrete.

But yeah...kinetic energy is a dangerous SOB.
 
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