Ass repair or why debug thinking is needed

    This is Denis with an endoscope in a car service.
    This is Denis with an endoscope in a car service.

    Just the other day, I probably received the best project management lesson in my life. There is an ordinary Russian man who used to sit in the office and worked in the advertising business, my former colleague (I myself am an IT specialist in an agency). He, to our great envy, went off to pick his own technique. He says he always liked to practice with his car. He participated in trophy-orienteering SUV competitions. Sometimes it was necessary to repair the car in shit and improvised means, for example a shackle. Sometimes friends came to him, in the yard they built an off-road car in 12 hours, the next day they competed. There is some experience, well, he decided to do a professional repair.

    Next, I will briefly tell you what and how he did it: this is not directly related to IT, but it shows a model of thinking. Just imagine how you had to think in order to pick up such a toolkit and approach the issue from the right engineering side. This approach of completing the task to the result by any means simply amazed me.

    We sat with him for several hours, Denis talked about his work. Different cars come to the service, with different problems, someone comes to MOT, change oil and filters, and someone comes with complex problems. For example, antifreeze leaves, and everywhere is dry. Or idling floats, somewhere there is air leaks, and where exactly, it is impossible to determine. Or a person has a cracked frame (bearing element), but it is necessary to determine the scale of disasters without opening.

    The usual practice in car services is as follows. The antifreeze leaves and there is no leak - the engine is in the bulkhead. Idle speeds float - change all sensors in a row until you achieve the desired effect. There is a crack on the frame - a patch will be welded on top and that's it, "... tyap blooper and boat." As a result, the client pays extra money, spends a lot of time and worries about nothing because of his car.

    If friends with whom to go tomorrow would come to him, he would repair to the result, and not like that. And then he just started showing what and how he uses

    Smoke generator:

    Smoke generator

    Leak of antifreeze can be localized using it. Also, the smoke generator is suitable in order to find a leak in the intake system and to figure out where the motor draws in air.

    It turned out that in order to determine how catastrophic a crack on the frame is, how far it went (crack) and what scale of disasters, you can use a video endoscope, place it inside the frame and see what happens inside. Denis once swallowed a probe while examining the stomach, and thought it would be cool to put one into the car. Found a suitable device, bought, uses.

    Endoscope in the bowels of the frame:

    Endoscope in the bowels of the frame

    Then he says:
    We had a car with such a bursting frame. They put a blotch in some kind of service, a crack was welded and that’s it. And while the car is cracking at the seams when moving. We placed a video endoscope through the technological holes inside the frame, were able to see how far the crack went inside the frame, and recommended the owner of the machine a constructive solution, taking into account what he saw. The car has been taking part in rally flights for more than three years, experiencing enormous loads on load-bearing elements.

    Waiting for your finest hour:

    Waiting for your finest hour

    Once, a KIA SPORTAGE I car came to us with symptoms of unstable idling, inflated injection times, nozzles poured powerfully. Strongly, no. The dynamics were STRONGLY gone, fuel consumption increased to 20-25 liters, the car was shaking. It was really not possible to ride it, before us it was in several services, no problems were found on any of them.

    We checked the sensors, carried out computer diagnostics. All the readings of the electronics were normal, for a start we decided to check the sensors and brains with the help of a good old oscilloscope.

    And here is the oscilloscope itself:


    Diagnostics did not reveal any problems, but suggested that the problem is still with the master disk, which is located on the flywheel. In order to check this, it is necessary to remove the gearbox, transfer case, clutch and then only you can get to the flywheel. The procedure is expensive and lengthy. But we didn’t go the standard way, we decided to use the same video endoscope. We unscrewed the crankshaft sensor and put the endoscope through the hole in the box. When we looked at the master disk and the flywheel, we saw that the disk had moved some distance from the flywheel.

    And this is how the video endoscope sees the drive:


    Repair recommended replacing a flywheel with a drive disk. Vladimir, the owner, said that a month ago he changed the clutch ... but he could not connect the strange behavior of the car with this repair. We provided photographs and prints, and offered to go with a complaint to the service in which the clutch changed, since it was obvious that the problem existed from that repair. That service does not specialize in Kia Sportage brand cars, so the problem was not identified on time.

    We did not offer him to fix the problem with us, and overpay for repairs, but we advised us to file a complaint, and that was the right decision. Everything ended well: Vladimir in that service did all the work for free, replaced the flywheel with the master disk, and now he is happy to drive and thanks our endoscope.

    Actually, what I wanted to say. Almost any task can be solved "as is customary", or maybe - until the result. And if, instead of learning from colleagues, you are deeply versed in the topic, there is the opportunity to use the achievements of other areas. In this case, tools that are easy enough to find and get.

    Almost always, you can think a little more and still get a solution, and not "heal" the problem with a thick bundle of bucks.

    Now, recalling the examples of Denis, I will always think a second time and sort through non-standard options.

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