Turns out that Westley was indeed just mostly dead. It was a timing belt, which I now know is a pretty important bit of equipment in an engine. It has to do with the timing of things that go up & down and in & out of the same space. And if they get out of whack (like when the timing belt breaks), they can get all banged around and can do some serious engine damage. Apparently there are two kinds of engines… the ones that allow that sort of insanity to take place, and the ones that don’t. Westley has the kind that doesn’t. As C3PO would say, “Praise the Maker” – in this case Ford.
Took a couple of days to get it out of the shop, mostly because they needed to call in a water pump. Turns out someone actually used bailing wire to hold it together on a previous repair, and our man thought it might be good to replace it while he had the engine apart… Never saw anything like that before.