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Since I was going to have to order the darn gasket and wait a week I decided to chase down some gasket material and make my own. Which wasn’t all that difficult really. Just take the intake manifold and use it as a template to cut a new gasket. $6 and 15 minutes later I have a new gasket. (You can only buy the gasket material in bulk).

So, as I’m scraping the old gasket off I make a discovery. I found the reason that the gasket blew. And darn it, if it wasn’t my own fault. If you look at the close up below of one of the bolts studs you will see an odd discolored ring. That’s a washer under the old gasket.

From Wally the Superbeetle

Yep, seems I put the washers on the studs when I took the motor apart so I wouldn’t lose them. And then forgot they were there. So, no matter how tight I cranked down the bolts, there was always going to be a gap. Grrrrrr. My own mistake. Oh well, live and learn. It’s fixed and running much much better now. Idles nicely and has decent power again.

Anyone need a bunch of gasket material? I’ve got lots left over. 🙂

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I downloaded the camera to the computer today for Roberta and there was a video on there that Molly had made. It’s the first part of an instructional video on drawing and painting a cartoon cat.

Not bad for a 10 year old. I might have to find the tripod and show her how to use it if she’s going to continue making these. Kinda cool really.

Update: Wait! Time out. I’ve got a better idea. I should drag Heather back here from Colorado and have her spend a weekend with Molly teaching her lighting, angles, etc. Since she’s a budding film producer and a good friend. Hmm….

Dr. Hector, a frequent guest at Sea Harvest has befriended Roberta. They’ve spoken a lot about her cancer and how she’s been feeling and how her disease has been progressing. Dr. Hector is one of the first American doctors to have been trained in the art of acupuncture in the far east. He’s retired and living in Pebble Beach now. He’s quite a character and a lot of fun to chat with.

The other day he brought to Sea Harvest a Tibetan Thangka, or painted scroll, and gave it to Roberta as a gift. According to his note it’s roughly 150 years old, give or take. It’s a painting of the White Tara. A Buddhist savior goddess. In Tibet her name is Sgrol-ma, meaning “She Who Saves”. The cotton canvas it is painted on has darkened with age, and what I’m reading, stained by the incense and smoke. It’s absolutely amazing.

The Mantra of Tara is “om tare tuttare ture svaha”

Tara is the goddess of universal compassion, represents virtuous and enlightened action. It is said her compassion for living beings is stronger than a mother’s love for her children. Sh also brings about longevity, protects earthly travel, and guards her followers on their spiritual journey to enlightenment.  (References found here)

This picture doesn’t do it justice. But, I’m being very careful about unrolling it and rolling it back up until I can figure out the proper way to hang this. I want this to last another 150 years. It’s truly beautiful.

From Monterey Living

White Tara is sometimes called the mother of all Buddhas.

I found this description of her at http://www.religionfacts.com

In iconography, White Tara often has seven eyes – in addition to the usual two, she has a third eye on her forehead and one on each of her hands and feet. This symbolizes her vigilance and ability to see all the suffering in the world. The “Tara of Seven Eyes” is the form of the goddess especially popular in Mongolia.White Tara wears silk robes and scarves that leave her slender torso and rounded breasts uncovered in the manner of ancient India. Like Green Tara, she is richly adorned with jewels.

If anyone reads this and has more information on this particular thangka I’d be grateful to hear whatever you know. I don’t know anything about the other 7 characters above and 3 below her. I’m sure 7/3 has some significance, but no idea what it might be. Yet.

Over the last two weeks Wally the superbeetle has slowly gotten rougher running and harder to keep idling. To the point I have to keep revving the engine up at stops or it sputters and dies.

I’ve changed out the points, condenser, timed it, played with the carb settings. Nothing. So, I started spraying around with brake cleaner (highly flammable) and lo and behold when I sprayed it near the #1 and #3 intake manifold the engine revved up. whoa-la I’ve got a vacuum leak. And it’s a duzie.

I finally pulled the intake manifold off this afternoon fearing a cracked manifold or something. Instead, it’s just the gasket that blew out.

From Wally the Superbeetle

Not sure how it happened but I do know that Permatex gasket sealer won’t work. I cleaned it up and tried, since I don’t have the proper gasket. I thought, temp fix, while the new one ships. Lasted as long as it took to start the bug up. So, tomorrow I ‘m off to try and find some gasket material so I can cut a new one. Fun fun. At least it’s something fairly easy to fix. Once I get the gasket material I’m figuring an hour to tear it apart, cut the new gasket and have it back together. Hopefully it won’t rain tomorrow. We’ve had a solid week of rain and storms. Not the time to be working on a car.

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