• Published 26th Oct 2017
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Adventures in The 6ix - Wiz Ahmad

After a malfunction with the Crystal Mirror during a demonstration, the Mane 6, Spike, Tempest, and Skystar get transported to another world - Toronto.

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Chapter 11: A Day's Work at the Shop



“TO WORK!” Maverick hollered, as we all wiped our mouths clean. Lunch was awesome, and everyone had a good fill. I was honestly surprised at how much Pinkie Pie could eat - and how fast she could eat! Not a single shred of salad or a slice of pizza or a smear of sauce remained.

“And don’t forget to wash beforehand!” Rodney added with a chuckle. “Clean hands perform the best work.”

One by one, we took turns using the shop’s two bathrooms. I entered before Tempest Shadow, but she insisted on being there at the same time.

“It’s only fair that I do something for you after you’ve worked to feed us all,” she said, thoroughly washing her hooves before gingerly rubbing my mouth. She even cupped one hoof, scooped some water, and splashed and rubbed it over my face - all in a smooth, gentle manner.

“All nice and clean for some hard work ahead.”

I smiled so hard I nearly blushed. Fizzlepop was really pushing her luck to show her love. I made a mental note to discuss it with her over dinner later tonight.

“Alright guys,” Rodney began, Twilight and her friends standing attentively in front of him, along with all the other employees. “Got a couple cars to work on today. First is this 1971 Gran Torino, then a 1967 Mustang Fastback. Torino has to be ready by tonight, and Mustang needs to be ready by the end of the week.”

Not wanting to be overshadowed by his older bro, Maverick jumped in, pointing to the Mustang’s body. “So definitely a lot of work needs to be done. The Mustang is mostly just a shell as you can see, while the Torino just needs some minor body touch-ups, a paint job, and some engine upgrades. Since the Torino’s deadline is near, we’ll focus primarily on it, while adding a little to the Mustang on the side. Now does everyone understand what needs to be done?”

“Yes!” Twilight and her friends exclaimed simultaneously.

“Yes, sir!” Garrett, Marcus, and the others replied.

With the workload understood, we split up to work on our individual tasks. Rarity and Kristen headed off to work on the upholstery for the Mustang’s door panels and seats, while Twilight, Spike, Applejack, Garrett, and I all gathered around the Torino.

“We’ll begin here by removing the hood for easier access, before taking off the bumper, grille, and headlights,” Garrett explained. “Then we’ll start removing components necessary to extract the whole engine and transmission.”

I scooted over to a toolbox beside the car, and Twilight eagerly followed. “Here we have all types of wrenches, drivers, and whatnot for undoing bolts, screws, and nuts. Also included are drills and torque wrenches - both manual and electric…”

While I explained to Twilight the whole toolbox and how to fit caps to a bolt and heads to screws, Garrett showed Applejack how to lift the car using a floor jack.

“Ready?” I asked Twilight, somewhat teasingly, holding a cordless drill.

“I’m ready.”

Together we unscrewed the screws and bolts holding the bumper, lights, and grill, while Garrett attempted to undo the hood bolts. As I pulled out a stubborn bolt, I noticed Applejack struggling to hold up the hood for him, and got an idea.

“Yo, Dash!” I called out over my shoulder. “Quick hand here.”

Before I could reach out to make a hand gesture, Rainbow Dash was already hovering over my head. I pointed to the hood, and she immediately got the idea.

“Happy to help, Garrett,” she said, effortlessly holding up the hood with one hoof. In no time at all the hood was removed and she and Garrett lifted it up and placed it aside. With the hood and most front-end items off, the engine was more accessible, though not completely. Twilight unplugged several connectors and Garrett labeled them for easy coordinated reattachment later, while I removed the front crossbar and radiator, taking care to drain any coolant fluid first.

With the front of the car completely removed, it was now time to deal with the engine itself.

“There isn’t much to tackle besides wiring and fluid draining here to be honest with you,” Garrett confessed. “I say we could have this motor free in fifteen minutes or less. Xavier, grab that diagram chart, will ya?”

It took a moment of thought, but I soon realized what he was talking about, and ran over to a small desk beside the toolbox itself. In a drawer, I rifled through a stack of sheets, and soon spotted it, clearly labeled.


I ran back to the car and spread it out on the fender for Twilight to observe. Then, as if my magic (literally!) she grabbed ten connectors in her telekinetic grasp and pulled them loose in a series of gentle clicks. In just seconds, half the wiring harness was free. Garrett then tackled the rest while Applejack headed off, returning shortly later pushing a metal frame with a pair of hooked chains on wheels.

“What in the hay is this?” she enquired.

“This is an engine hoist,” I replied, helping her along. “We’ll use it to hold the engine after we’ve released it from the car. Gotta raise the car up first though, using a second type of stand, called a lift.”

“Spike, can you push those just under the side of the car, please?” Garrett asked the little dragon, pointing to the bright yellow arms of the two-post lift.

“At your service,” Spike replied, and gently pushed each arm into place, so the lift saddles were exactly under the car’s frame rails. Garrett then introduced Spike to the control panel, showing him the buttons.

“Car’s going up!” Spike announced, pressing the “UP” button. With a buzz, the car slowly and smoothly rose up off the ground, much to Twilight’s awe.

“Good. Now we can get access to the transmission, and release it too,” Garrett said, climbing under the car with a torque wrench and a drill. I handed him some sockets while Twilight drained the transmission fluid using a pump, and Spike helped unplug and remove more of the wiring. I smiled. Garrett had taught them well.

Soon the transmission was free and the engine was drained dry of its fluids. All that was left to do was unclamp the vacuum lines and remove the manifolds. Glancing under the car, I noticed that Garrett had also removed the exhaust too.

“Okay, let’s get back to them wrenches and drills!” he announced cheerfully.

I showed Twilight how to use an electric torque wrench to remove all the bolts on the intake manifold properly in an even, equal manner. She followed closely and mastered the art, showing how much of a great, attentive learner she was. Garrett and Spike worked on what bolts of the exhaust manifold they could reach, and soon had both off. I unclamped all the lines going to the valves and pumps. The engine was finally ready for removal.

Garrett plugged in the hooks, while Twilight and I operated the lever, slowly bringing up the engine. Applejack crawled under the car.

“Ah got the trans!” she declared. “Nice and steady. Try moving back a bit and down a little.”

“Okay, back more, more, more… there! Now try raising it up a bit.”

Twilight cranked the lever a couple times, while I jiggled the motor a little. Soon the transmission cleared the tunnel and the engine began sliding out with ease. Finally it was free. Applejack clambered out into the engine bay and then out onto the main floor, still holding the transmission.

“Let’s wheel it over to Brian, who will supercharge it to a good 500hp or so,as per the owner’s request,” Garrett declared.

Applejack held up the transmission parallel to the floor while I released the jack’s wheel locks and pushed it along down through the shop. Twilight eagerly followed close behind, levitating her notepad and pen.

“Ayo Jacko!” Maverick (who happened to be nearby) called out. “302 needs some suckin’ power. Get to it, will ya?”

“Gotcha boss,” Jack casually replied, setting down a rebuild manual. Twilight watched in earnest as he picked up a couple of special wrenches and started undoing several bolts. While still a young ‘un at 23, Jack was well-versed in quick, precise engine upgrades and assembly. In just fifteen minutes the whole head was off the block and all components disassembled. Off to the side in front of a 2007 Dodge Viper lay several tubes, electrical wires, and a large circular air filter, among other items. I soon recognized them as the supercharger components.

With the engine work in good hands, Applejack and I returned to the Gran Torino to start work on the body. Garrett was already unboxing a set of brand new coilovers and one of his assistants was lifting a couple subframe components off a large metal shelf.

“Ah, you’re back,” Garrett said, looking up from the box in front of him. “My assistant, Gabriel, is here today. With you two involved, it’s three times the hands and three times less the effort! We should be able to get this done in just a couple hours.”

Amazingly, Gabriel seemed unfazed by the presence of ponies and a little dragon. It seemed like Garrett had already given him the heads-up. Or he probably had a run-in with Fluttershy, who was now hovering up in the air, changing a burnt-out light bulb.

After Spike had raised the car up on the lift, Garrett undid all the bolts while Applejack held up the subframe. The trailing arms were rusted pretty bad, and the main subframe bracket had a large bronze-colored hole in it. It was pretty incredible to think the owner had still managed to drive it to the shop without crashing or breaking down - physically.

“Alright,” Gabriel began, analyzing the physical durability of the stock subframe components. “Coilovers will definitely have to go, given the power levels of that V8 once it gets reinstalled. Axles will need upgrading, just to be on the safe side. Differential is okay, just the housing needs some touch-up and rust removal. Main subframe is toast, and so are the trailing arms. Looks like a 50/50 - gotta remove rust and also replace entire parts as well.”

We worked away. Applejack sanded down the differential housing and Garrett spray-painted it, while Gabriel and I cleaned the inside of the wheel arches, then rust-proofed them. Garrett took a break while Gabriel, Applejack, and I took off the front wheels and dismantled did the front subframe. We wiped, sanded, and sprayed, before adding the parts to the drying rack.

With many hours to spare before the paint and rustproofer spray fully dried, we decided to check up on Brian. Just as we turned to walk down the “hall”, a horn blared from the front entrance. The big garage door rolled up to reveal the thick, bold figure of Tempest. Behind her was a flatbed trailer with a fire red ‘69 Camaro on it.

“Heads-up, Maverick,” she announced, stepping inside, her stride confident and bold. “We got ourselves a new customer here with a serious engine issue. Sounds like busted internals.”

“Probably from too much hard reckless driving,” mused Applejack, who’d caught attention and was now standing beside me. We watched as Maverick scooted up to Tempest and carefully guided the truck driver as he reversed into the shop.

“So what’s the issue, sugarcube?” Applejack asked, causing the owner to literally jump out of his skin while jumping out of the truck at the same time.

“What-the-how-can-talk…” The guy could barely get a few words out so I pitched in.

“Sorry if this all seems weird. This is Applejack, one of my friends. Got several others here as well. Yes they are talking ponies with big eyes and even bigger hearts. Now what’s got your whip busted?”

“Driving one day, everything seems fine, did a nice burnout at a meet and a sweet slide… and then I hear a snap and bang. Whole car just stops working altogether and there’s oil and fluid dripping all over…” The young chap described the whole story as I studied him. He was of a medium build and a rather short height - not taller than 5’2, with a light freckled face and windswept hair. I couldn’t place him any younger than 17.

“Oh, hi there! What’s your name?” Fluttershy asked kindly, flying over from the office area, where she’d finished organizing containers of used fluids and oils.

“I, uh, I’m Max. This is my Camaro SS. She’s quite a kicker, but her heart’s pretty much dead.”

“Aw, don’t worry Max, we’ll get her up and running as soon as we can,” Fluttershy reassured him, caressing his shoulder with her hoof. “We promise.”

It was rather amusing to see Max’s face warm up so easily at the sight and sound of someone like Fluttershy. He gently stroked her mane back and she offered him a hug, which he gladly accepted. For a moment I actually thought he might cry; Fluttershy had immense powers when it came to making others feel loved.

“Alright, I’ll have Brian, Xavier, and Garrett take a look at the engine,” Maverick announced, stepping forward to greet Max. “Come, let’s discuss pricing.”

Max tossed me the keys and headed for the office. Garrett popped the hood and we all gathered around the engine bay.

“Looks like a blown engine, but I need more detail. Let’s get this rocket up in the air.”

With help from Rodney, Applejack, and Spike, we eased the Camaro off the trailer and hoisted it up on a spare lift. One glance under was all it took - and Rodney, I, and even Applejack could tell.

“Thrown rod and a busted gear.”

“Likely second.”

Tempest gave her best friendly goodbye to Max and the truck driver, while Garrett, Applejack, Gabriel, and I wasted no time stripping down the Camaro. The engine looked rad, but all parts looked stock, except for the fuel injectors and the headers.

“Looks like this is going o take a while, even though it’s a simple fix,” Rodney confided.

I had to agree. It was well into the afternoon and we still had two other projects to work on. It looked like the Mustang would have to wait until tomorrow or even the day after.

After half an hour, the Camaro’s V8 was drained, out, and on one of Brian’s stands. Applejack held up parts while I made short work of the headers and head components with an electric torque wrench. Soon the head was off, and we could see the damage. One piston was cracked, another looked slightly bent and had detonated through the oil pan. Thankfully there wasn’t any serious damage to the block, otherwise we’d have to swap in a whole new one.

Upon removing the oil pan and disposing of the broken bits, Garrett then removed the damaged crankcase and returned moments later with a shiny new one.

“How did you get a new part so fast?” Applejack exclaimed, gasping.

“We work with V8s a lot, so there’s always parts to go ‘round,” Brian replied with a shrug. “Looks like the bottom of the block will just need some grinding, cleaning, and a little polish to remove all the bits and scratches from the metal grit caused by those detonated pistons.”

At Rodney’s request, we split up - a little job rotation. Applejack helped Fluttershy out with sorting tires, wheels, and trash, while Garrett, Brian, Gabriel, and I all worked together on the Camaro’s engine. We grinded, sprayed, scrubbed, washed, and dried. Finally the block and head were ready, and we installed the new pistons and properly torqued them to the crankcase - a technique that I’d learned years ago.

“Great job everyone,” Maverick complimented as he passed by, having returned from the office. “Looks like you’re all handling a large number of tasks quite well.”

Author's Note:

Nice long chapter for y'all. Bit of slice-of-life setting here with great detail.

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