One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1‘he spent hours tinkering with the car’
try to improve, try to mend, work amateurishly on, fiddle with, play with, play about with, play around with, toy with, trifle with, dally with, dabble with, potter about with, fool about with, fool around with
tamper with, interfere with, meddle with
tinker at the edges of, tinker with the edges of, adjust slightly
informal mess about with, mess around with, rearrange the deckchairs on the Titanic
British informal muck about with, muck around with
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