Destination Restoration: Waking from Hibernation By Ash Seidl-Staley Photo Courtesy of the Author 10 April Spring is a beautiful time of year. When referring to how spring makes me feel, I speak less of mild temperatures, singing birds, or blossoming flowers, but rather about the thousands of Porsches awaking from their long winter hibernations. I mean buzzing bees and chirping birds are great and all, but what really excites me about this time of year is the roaring of a Porsche engine as its lucky owner speeds through the streets of North Texas. Winter is just depressing. Even in Texas the numbers of roadfaring Porsches drastically decline in these colder months, and for good reason! Who wants to risk icy driving, salty road conditions, or crazy southern drivers? Not this guy! Thankfully winter, which was rather mild this year, has relinquished its grip on the weather and we can all go out and play with our cars. Due to an intense work load in Graduate classes last fall, I was unable to write up two separate articles describing the methods I used to stow away both my 914 and my 944 for the winter. But there is always this year right? My school work has not let up at all this spring semester, but I still managed to draft the procedures I took to wake up my 944, not only to get her running for the 2016 year, but also to get her inspected and registered by the end of February. Since, due to regular maintenance on my wife’s vehicle, I had planned on using the 944 a couple times during December and January, the procedures to get the car ready for another year were fairly simple. Unlike the 914, I had not completely drained the car of gasoline or of brake fluid. Because of this my list of tasks was amazingly short. First, I reconnected the recently charged battery, pulled my spark plug wires, and turned over the engine a few times without a spark. After I felt like all the pertinent mechanicals were coated in some much needed oil, I reattached my spark plug cables and fired her up. I could not believe how quickly the car started or how gracefully it sat idling. Was this the same Guards Red 944? With the remaining hours left in the day, I hopped in the car and drove straight to a gas station. There I topped off the fuel tank and filled the droopy tires with compressed air. As the car drove I took special care to notice if my dashboard components illuminated when I initiated the turn signals, hazards, and headlights, including the high beams. Similarly, I monitored my engine’s fluctuating temperature, watching it steadily rise to the 3/4 mark, waiting for the fans to kick on, and watching it travel back down to the appropriate level. When I had finally made it back to my apartment I continued to let the car run for a good twenty minutes more. I was delighted to find that my cooling fans did indeed work, and all my fluid levels were right within Porsche specifications. A quick oil change, oil and air filter replacement, as wells a brake pad check rounded out my necessary obligations. The first hurdle was past me; I had my 944 back on the road. Now all that was left was the dreaded state inspection. For those Mavericks who have followed my inspection escapades over the years I am grateful to report that the 944 passed on its first try! Most of the credit is due to my intense pre-inspection procedures, but some of it is definitely attributed to luck. While out on my test drive I had confirmed that the interior and exterior turn indicators all worked perfectly fine. With the assistance of a helper I checked to make sure that all the brake lights, tail lights, reverse lights, and rear signals illuminated when supposed to. The only hiccup found was my right rear tail light. For some reason the light would work at some moments and then go dark for others. Quirky right tail light After opening the light housing and fidgeting with the bulb I came to the realization that I had mistakenly misplaced the tail light and brake light bulbs. Once I made the switch with new bulbs I again tested the vehicle, which, as you might have guessed, passed. A quick jolt down the road to my neighborhood inspection station took literally two minutes, and the inspection itself was a world record breaking seven minutes. The humble attendant at the station took great care with my precious classic, even asking “are there any quirks with it I should know about?” When I answered that there weren’t any to my knowledge, minus the finicky tail light, he sped off around the corner with a smile on his face. By the time I checked my email the car inspection was done and paid for. Miraculously, my time spent in line at the DMV was even shorter! Driving home with my new registration sticker, I felt as though I had wandered into an alternate universe. I have never had such a smooth inspection/registration experience ever! Let’s just hope that the good luck will continue on into May when I have to get the 914’s credentials updated. Until that time and the next article: Wrench on Mavs!