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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Another thread reminded me of some of the old car tech that I certainly do NOT miss from the bygone years.
  • Vacuum operated wipers that would stall when you put high demand on the engine.
  • Vacuum operated "power windows" that often needed a helping hand
  • NON self-adjusting Drum Brakes on all four wheels (balancing them was a bear)
  • Setting the points
  • Balancing/setting the carburetor (especially the good old Holly "double pump")
  • Stopping and adjusting the carburetor for altitude when going over mountains.
  • Floor mounted Hi/Lo beam switch (that always collected crud, got crunchy, and failed at the worst possible time)
  • Bias ply winter tires (ugh)
  • Windshield fluid sprayer that depended on the air from the spare tire for pressure (VW Bug)
  • No rear window defrost/defog of any sort
 

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6V electrics.

Flooded engine.

Water in engine bay makes car not start.

Drum brakes full of water are like dragging your feet out the door.

Vacuum popup headlights creates Cyclops Vision.

Violent wheel hop due to poor rear suspension setup.

Torque steer on FWD.

Carburator fires.

Three On The Tree.

Automatic Choke. This means the choke automatically screws up when you need it most. Like creates thick smoke when cop is behind you.

Engine rebuilds before 50,000 mi, trans at 30,000, tuneups at 5000, tires at 20,000, brakes about the same.

Check oil each fillup, it probably needs a quart.

Car runs like crap when cold or hot.

Using ether or gasoline poured into carb on really cold days.
 

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Hand operated windshield wipers.
Manual door locks for a 4 door.
hand crank windows
am radio
cabins heated by air cooled motor
manual clutch
 

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Keyed doorlocks and ignition switches. When I was at Michigan Tech in the mid 90's I had to carry lock deicer with me all the time because the door locks on my Geo Spectrum froze so easily. And because it was winter in dah U.P.!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
6V electrics.
Ah ha ha ha, I wasn't even going to go THERE :p
Drum brakes full of water are like dragging your feet out the door.
Amen brother. Add that to the high elevation carburetor power loss and...well, you know.

Torque steer on FWD.
OMG yes... Did you ever drive an Oldsmobile Toronado? And my mother had an 81 Ford Escort which didn't really have any torque, but sure threw all it could into the steering!

Automatic Choke. This means the choke automatically screws up when you need it most. Like creates thick smoke when cop is behind you.
Honest officer, it was an accident!

Check oil each fillup, it probably needs a quart.
And if it didn't you wondered why and worried your rings were too tight.
 

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Vac operated door that slammed down on the wipers and bent the crap out of them. Oil gauge that leaked oil. Any analog clock. 8-track tapes. Tube set radios. Dual-point distributors. Any 4-bbl or 6-pack carb setup.
 

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...
OMG yes... Did you ever drive an Oldsmobile Toronado?

...
Yes, a 1966 Toronado gives me fond memories.

425 cubic inches of Wrong Wheel Drive! But it would light 'em up until you lifted. Good times. :D

No front seat (or rear) hump, made it a real "humpmobile". Going to the Drive-In with your girl in a Toronado was a nice night. Speedometer was like a slot machine reel. The steering wheel could go in or out, by twisting the knob in the center?
 

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A vent flap in the dash that brought in outside air
Triangular windows that flipped out, giving you great airflow, but absolutely ruining aerodynamics
Cassette tape players/8 track tape
And now CD players (gone with the gen2)
Hidden gas cap behind the license plate
A manual antenna that you push down to avoid losing them in an automatic car wash
Gasoline heater with a real burning flame under the floor (VW Vanagon)
Cigarette lighters and ash trays with a little metal door
Seat belts that don't retract or tension
Bench vinyl seats that don't recline whatsoever
Metal dashboards/steering wheels
Radio volume and tuning knobs where you get horrible static while turning requiring a squirt of electrical contact solution, and lots of twisting to work out
Manual mirrors where the right one did show objects closer than you think
Even cars without a right side mirror
Mufflers that wore out every 3-4 years
No power steering
New cars priced less than $1000 dollars
And someday... cars with an exhaust pipe and a gas tank

EDIT:
no airbags
Shock absorbers built into the bumper
Chrome metal bumpers with giant upright guards and a tiny rubber piece glued to the end
Turn signal indicators on the hood (old chryslers)
A proper real wheel drive (becoming rarer and rarer)
Rear windows that rolled all the way down
Rear doors which opened the wrong way (old continentals)
Giant wings from the manufacturer (dodge charger daytona, Plymouth superbird, Toyota supra)
 

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I had something in my 1984 Olds Cutlass Ciera LS that few other cars had: a mechanical clock on the passenger side of the dash over the glove compartment that used digits done with white numbers on black wheels rotating upwards. The first wheel has numbers one to twelve, the middle wheel had zero to five, and the other had zero to nine. The clock just showed the hour and minutes.

On the original Ciera, there was a plastic panel at the passenger side between the two air vents outlets that has "Oldsmobile" molded into it (chrome letters on a black background). The clock replaced that same panel, and was wired into the cigarette lighter wire for main power, and to the dash light for illumonation. I don't have pictures but somewhere I still have the entire kit which was worth $60 when new.
 

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Stalk mounted manual shift lever.

Thought I was gonna barf the first time I drove a Tesla model S. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #14

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Discussion Starter #15
A vent flap in the dash that brought in outside air
and rain, and the occasional swarm of bees (I'll tell y'all about THAT one some time)

Hidden gas cap behind the license plate
That was ONLY cool in the Trans Am <grin>

Cigarette lighters and ash trays with a little metal door
And somehow that door always ALWAYS had a razor sharp edge someplace.

Metal dashboards/steering wheels
YES, I'm SO glad the old "Dash-O-Death" is gone from cars!

Mufflers that wore out every 3-4 years
Okay, I was young so I had a tight budget and bought cheap mufflers...and went through one every year on my old Pinto due to salt and such in upstate NY. When I got my Trans-Am with a stainless exhaust it was like a full blown miracle!

no airbags
That seems so weird now doesn't it?!?

Turn signal indicators on the hood (old chryslers)
Awwww, I LOVED that on my Dart Demon.
 

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You guys beat me to just about everything. How 'bout...

Signal lights that blinked at like 0.05Hz, look at the car for like 20s to figure if they're turning.

Locking hubs, where you had to get out in the storm and try to get them to turn to engage the 4x4
 

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They were great for j-turns:


Did one of these in someone else's Toronado. It was awesome!
And the front wheel covers would fly off and murder innocent plants. Those Toronado caps weighed more than most wheels these days. I had a '70 green monster w/455cid and a Polaroid flip camera.
 

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Haha these stories bring back old memories. Never could figure out what all those plastic hoses were for in the old Chrylsers ( like a rats nest of hoses, valves, etc going every which way)

One of the worst I had was in a Ford Cortina (British import) that had a manual choke (common) connected to the gas pedal mechanism somehow so that when it was cold and you stepped on the gas the choke would pull in and the car would instantly stall. Well at least in those days home made workarounds were easy, in my case it was just disconnecting the spring link to the choke. The high vibration of the car would "automatically " push the choke back in over time while driving.
 

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Then there was what we used to call "Armstrong" power steering!

Couple the manual steering with manual (drum!) brakes, 4-on-the-floor, and a 383 in a '68 GTX, and you have quite a handful. Ah, those were the good ol' days!
 
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