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My most amazing Audi problem yet!

After I got the clutch M/C done on the '87 5kCSQ I figured I could pretty 
much button it all back up again ... My wife's brother's '88 5kW was 
involved in a hit & run accident last weekend and he had asked if he could 
borrow a car from us, so that was my motivation.  Well, I took the car 
down to get its new CA Emission sticker [saving me the $300 smog im-
pact tax] and the car ran fairly well, but the speedo wasn't working.  I 
knew the car had an electronic speedo, so I figured my messing with 
the window wiring in the driver's door (and unplugging all the Kostal 
connectors) was the source of the problem.  He came down to pick the 
car up this evening, so I figured I'd quickly whip through the electrical 
connections to track it down.  I had rechecked the Kostal connectors 
the other night, so I started with the sender.  I found 12v and ground on 
the connector pins, so I figured I'd test the sender.  Well, it just so hap-
pens I have the tranny for the '88 wagon STILL sitting in the garage (I 
bought the '87 so that I could do the tranny on the '88!) so I pulled the 
sender off the tranny and hooked it up to the connector ... spun the inlet 
with a dril ... voila, speedo works!  No problem, all I've got to do is pull 
off the existing sender and swap on the new one.  Well, I compared the 
sender I removed from the '87 to the one I had already pulled ... the 
square drive that connects to the speedo drive gear was sheared ... 
broken into the drive gear!  I tried digging into the drive gear and was not 
able to extricate the broken off piece.  I ended up swapping the speedo 
drive gear from the other tranny and putting it all back together ... speedo 
works fine now.  I found that the sending unit had gotten gummed up in-
side, causing the break ... the best theory I have is that the car had a long

standing Pentosin leak (the stuf is gummed up all over the area, and it 
worked its way into the sender over time.  The car has been sitting idle in 
the garage for a while now, and that probably gave it the chance it needed 
to lock up.  Based on this experience I think I've found another reason that 
I will deal with leaking rack syndrome more quickly!  If any of you have 
green gold dripping on the left side of the engine you might want to think 
about this as well ... swapping the sender was actually fairly easy ... 
pulling the speedo drive gear was a bit more of a PITA (not the worst thing 
I've ever had to do though).  If I didn't have the ready parts source this
have probably been a multiple parts trip experience ...

The other consequence of this extended troubleshooting process was that 
I didn't make up to meet Dan in Burlingame tonight.  I did get a chance to 
talk to him a couple times on the phone ... the thing I feel the worst about 
was leaving Arun to try to hook up with Dan and Derek on his own.  Arun,
I know that it doesn't help much, but I wanted to offer my sincerest public

By the way, my BIL's 5k suffered a broken alternator belt and some frontal 
damage ... the BMW that blew the stop sign was T-boned and is probably 
totalled ... Since the guy ran off we don't know if he was injured ...
so.  Fortunately for my BIL & his family the Audi did it's job and thankfully

noone was injured more than being shaken up.  I hope they throw the book 
at the jerk that screwed up by running a stop sign and then was such an 
inconsiderate chicken---- to try to run off!

Sorry about the lengthy post ... I hope that it does prove useful to someone!
Steve Buchholz
San Jose, CA (USA)