Accident | My Black Brick

My Black Brick

Keeping a '92 Volvo 240 Wagon on the Road & Other Automotive & DIY Musings

R.I.P. My Black Brick

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This looks like the end of an era for me. I got into an accident on a roadway in New York and smashed the front of my car in. It was a short stop at a traffic light and luckily everyone was fine. My daughter had a little scratch on her neck from her seat belt but other than that our only trauma was psychological. The compact SUV in front of me suffered a busted bumper and some damage to the rear hatch door.

The radiator is shoved into the engine and coolant was spilled all over the road. In light of that fact I’m not going to bother trying to save it. If it were just body damage it would be different but considering the situation it’s not worth it to me getting it fixed. I have no place to store and work on it so tomorrow I’m heading back to the garage, pulling out some valuables and saying good bye.

This has been a fun ride and I’ve enjoyed keeping this blog. This car was been a mixed blessing; I’ve learned a lot from working on it but always felt there was something else I needed to fix. It rode pretty well and maintenance was cheap. There’s been a great community of fellow enthusiasts and I’ve always loved checking out the Brick Board to figure out how to do things myself, with the help of a passionate group of shade-tree mechanics.

I bought the car when my second daughter was born and we’ve enjoyed some great trips as they were growing up over the past 9 years. We had fun seeing how much stuff we could fit into the trunk on trips camping and to the beach. They treated it like another member of the family and I think the worst pain for them is knowing that the car will be gone.

As we were talking about what’s next my daughter asked me if, when I was a kid, I ever thought that objects were alive like people. I told her that I had, that I remember thinking that my stuffed animals had feelings. “That’s how I feel about the car,” she said. “It’s like it even has a face, and it’s sad to say goodbye.” Yes, yes it is.

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Dark Lights



I came to a stop in traffic Saturday and noticed the guy behind me swerve to avoid hitting my rear. Idiot tailgater, I thought. It was only later that I realized my brake lights were out. Argh! I checked the fuses and they seemed fine, but I replaced the brake light one anyway. Voila! Hopefully now I can avoid getting rear ended… and arrested.

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Can’t Kill It

A brick lover has to be careful when searching YouTube with the term “Volvo 240″. It seems like half the videos involve groups of teenage boys hooning their car into the ground… or off the ground, flying through the air to the music of Rammstein.

The rollover at 5:35 is pretty bad ass. None of the glass broke. Keep watching to see in slo-mo.

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Stuck Truck


Somehow this trucker managed to wedge his trailer under the train trestle at the entrance to Hoboken. This happened today a block from my studio and I shot video and photos. It’s a recycling truck that had just emptied it’s load about a 1/2 mile away. Took the tow company a couple hours to finally pull it out since it was wedged under two different tracks. Hoboken traffic was a mess with this major entry and exit route closed at rush hour.

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Watch out for that Moose


Amazing shot of a moose diving for cover from a loose XC.

Via Jalopnik

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Black Death on Wheels

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This war-weary brick was preparing for an epic confrontation at the Sussex, NJ state fairgrounds a couple weeks ago. I wasn’t able to catch the evenings event but spoke with the owner, Joe, and found out this was his third demolition derby with a Volvo 240. He totaled his first 244 but this 245 lived to smash another day after an oil fire put him out in the middle of competition last year. He tells me he makes the entry fee by selling plastic interior parts to bricksters in Europe.

I tried to contact the driver last week to find out how he did but haven’t heard back. Joe, if you’re out there, send us a report!

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Sunday! Sunday! Sunday! Monster trucks at the Mall

Now I understand why people need SUVs to go to the mall. It’s so they can easily pull back and leave after they plow over the cars in the parking lot, like this skilled driver.

That’s cost you $500.

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Rolling Rocks

According to commenters  on the news site where this footage was posted, this particular stretch of road on route 129  in Tennessee is very curvy. But I don’t think that’s any excuse for this FAIL.  If you’re coming around a sharp curve and “wondering what the heck the police and news crews are doing at that moment” your best bet would be to proceed with caution and slow down. Instead our driver notices the massive rock slide blocking the road only at the last minute, when it’s too late.

Or maybe he thought he was Luke Duke and could just jump the rocks with a good “Yee Haw!”

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How did anyone survive the 1960′s?

After seeing this video, I have no idea how anyone survived driving in the 1960s. When you combine ridiculous amounts of power with minimal seat belts, no child safety seats and inadequate  chassis rigidity, it’s no wonder accident survival rates were so low.

I love my headrest!

Via How We Drive.

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Flippin’ Brick

Guess this is what they do for fun in Norway.

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