Originally intended to document my experience of DeLorean ownership, focus is often radical and strange, boring and obtuse.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Valley of Death

DeLorean Valley of Death, dirty, but no holes!

What do bloody mice carcasses, mice skeletons, engine coolant, slime, and general nastiness all have in common? No, they are not McDonald's primary ingredients. No, not even in Vietnam. Give up?

They are all things found in the DeLorean's Valley of Death, also known as the VOD.

Now I see you are asking yourself, where is this Valley of Death, exactly? Basically, it's the space between the top of the engine block and the intake manifold. And iff'n you ain't careful, this valley, or dip, between the two banks of cylinders turns into a cesspool. And then the death part comes.

So, what's so deadly about this valley? Glad you asked. This is the place where time uses science against you to destroy your precious PRV V-6, bringing death to your cruise nights. And your wallet.

Coolant keeps your engine cool, but over time it turns acidic. A major coolant line runs right through this valley. If coolant leaks here, it sits in the channel undetected for years baking acid pies and cakes. When did Playcar magazine start showing the internals? Dirty!These delicious treats slowly corrode the aluminum and melt a hole right into your engine. Here, the cake & pie will raise a family of grenades, which will then detonate when they hit puberty.

When I took my intake manifold off I was shocked at what I saw. It was neither a mouse carcass nor a pile of sludgey coolant with a severed finger floating in it. In fact, it was nothing at all. Have a look at that bit of dirt the green arrow points to. That's it.

With Over 110,000 miles on my DeLorean, which is on the high side as far as most DMC-12's go, it should have been a Godzilla-vs.-Tokyo-style disaster. Instead, the valley contained only a small layer of dirt which I vacuumed up in 3.7 seconds. My VOD turned out to be the Valley of Cleanliness, and did not require any attention.

And that's a very good thing, because if I order one more part for the DeLorean, my wife assures me there will most certainly be a death in our garage. (And I don't mean the engine.)

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Blogger Velvet Ginger said...

Wow, that looks like alot of work!!! Almost sad seeing those dead parts.
We hope they don't find you stuffed in one of those recycle boxes in the garage!

10:25:00 AM

Blogger Unknown said...

Martini: I would address it aggressively with Gunk Foam spray and a high pressure wash if possible before replacing parts. I am sure you have contacts with DMC's to bounce this challenge off of as well. Good luck on maintaining this beautiful automobile!

1:47:00 PM

Blogger Grant said...

My Chevy Malibu has a good engine, but I think they hired electronic engineers from kindergarten to design the electricals. They've all been dying a slow death, sometimes bringing my car to a halt.

11:01:00 AM

Blogger Martini said...

Grant, sounds like the same team that designed the old Beetle - Our '76 would blast its horn if you turned the steering wheel too far to the right. And the fuese blew like popcorn in a microwave.

2:04:00 PM

Blogger The T-Dude said...

HA! You know, keeping a mistress, even a stainless steel hottie like yours, is always expense and hard on the marriage.

11:58:00 AM

Blogger honkeie said...

haha T-Dude said Hard On huh uh huh uh hu!

10:20:00 AM

Blogger Monogram Queen said...

That's pretty good that your delorean is holding up so well.
LMAO at Suz... quite a gal that Suz! ;)

3:59:00 PM

Blogger Ellie Creek Ellis said...


have a good weekend!

10:53:00 PM


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