Sunday, January 28, 2007

I guess it could be worse...

I rolled down the driver's window a few days ago. When it was going down it felt odd. Plus, it made a clunk that it usually doesn't. Now it won't roll back up.

The passenger's side won't roll down. It is stuck in the closed position. Guess I have a matched set, now.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Oil Change

Finished up an oil change this evening. For some reason I have a knack for overfilling the truck when I do oil changes. For the third time after a change, I had to drain some of the new oil off this evening.

Now it is sitting pretty, right at the full mark. I don't know why I can't keep from over filling the thing. Seems like 5 quarts would be easy enough to add, doesn't it?

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

The Odometer Update

It has been a while since I updated The Odometer on the sidebar. We are closing in on 500 miles driven, at a cost of less than $4.50 per mile.

Now if I can get that per mile cost down around what a rental truck cost, I'll be really happy!

And you might notice the entry that shows the truck has been driven on the highway, now. It wasn't on purpose. I was going fishing and I went the wrong way. My choice was to go about 5 miles out of my way to stay off of the freeway or to drive on the highway for about a mile. I chose the freeway, but I still only got up to about 50 miles an hour. Luckily I only had to take the very next exit.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Rick's Pics

Sorry they are blurry, but it is too cold to go back out in the garage. I also have the complete set of lenses on the truck, but it is raining and I don't want to get the camera wet...

These are the spares and take offs from the step side bed.

This is the bucket I keep them in. And the shelf that I keep the bucket on. Notice the original red heater hose on the top shelf. Still looks pretty good for 38 years old.

This is the lens that I broke when I knocked the bucket off of the shelf when I was taking that picture. So much for being a smart ass.

And a few more shots because I was still feeling like an ass...

Four in one shot

The rear passenger side reflector

The rear driver's side reflector

The front driver's side reflector

The front turn signal (original to the truck)

Passenger's front turn signal (original to the truck)

The front passenger's side reflector

Driver's side headlamp (upgraded to halogen)

Passenger's side headlamp (upgraded to halogen)

The only missing lens on the truck. But the whole assembly is going to have to be replaced, so I'll buy both pieces as a set.
For now, I'll just go with no interior cab light.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Lens collection grows

A while back I bought a set of used lenses for the truck. When they arrived, I saw that I had two reverse lenses for the passenger side, none for the driver's side and three brake light lenses to cover the two lights.

Two weeks ago I bought another set of used reverse light lens covers. After several days without mail, Thanks to MLK Jr and about two inches of ice on the roads, they arrived today. Now I have three brake light lenses, eight side marker lenses (for the four side reflectors), and five reverse light lenses.

I think I finally have all the lights covered, now.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Fouling plugs

I have been reading up on Seafoam Motor Treatment and decided to run some through the engine yesterday. But the plugs that I cleaned a couple of days ago were already too dirty to get my motor runnin'.

So I cleaned them once more, warmed up the engine and then I soaked it with Seafoam through the carb. The amount of smoke was much less than I imagined. So possibly the engine wasn't as dirty as I assumed. Or maybe I did not let the Seafoam soak in long enough.

After that, I installed ANOTHER set of new spark plugs, this time AC Delco R43S. We shall see soon if they work any better than the Bosch plugs I had installed.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

One step backward, three steps forward

I bribed the kids today. If they took naps, we would cruise to the park in the truck later in the day. They lived up to their end of the bargain. I almost did not make good on my end.

Marge ran great last night. I cruised her halfway to downtown and back with no problems (except the whole Ford Taurus thing...). A round trip of 20 miles or more.

This afternoon she started for crap and idled like hell. Luckily, Racecar Man's kids were playing outside, so we only had to drive a two block round trip.

Sure enough the spark plugs were dirty again. and #4 plug was wet and oily. I pulled the plugs, wire brushed them, checked the gaps and reinstalled. She fired right up. Don't know what makes her trash plugs so quickly.

The steering has always been loose. Today on one of the guys asked about tightening his manual steering box. I followed the process some of the guys recommended and it seems to drive a lot nicer.

The Talker went for a ride this evening with me. While we were out we ran the truck backwards up the street several times to see if the self-adjusters would help with the brakes. I can feel a definite difference now, so I guess my mom's advice all those years ago in her Bel-Aire wagon was right.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Marge KO's the bull

I drove Marge, in her new blue dress, to a stay at home dad's group night out this evening. On the way a woman hit Marge on the rear corner of the driver's side quarter panel, right beside the tail light.

No damage, except a little scrape on the new paint. But you shoulda seen the other car.Marge is large and in charge. She knocked that Ford Taurus to the mat.

The lady drove away without stopping. So I took a lot of joy in the moment that she said, "Well it did not do any damage to your truck".

"Yeah, you are right, but you ought to see the passenger's side of your car. You have a nice blue racing stripe over there, now!"

Way to go Margie.

Spray Bomb Paint Job

OK. She ain't pretty, but it is finished.

I think it looks better now than when I drug her home out of the pasture. More time and effort will go into the body and paint when I can afford it. Like when the kids are grown and I am dead...

So now a word to other morons contemplating a spray can job on an old truck.


It does look better than when I started, but I spent a lot more on it than I expected. I could have bought a simple spray rig for much less and probably gotten better results.

If I had it to do over, I would have left the paint alone and waited until I could afford real body and paint work.

Still, I'll drive it like this. Maybe I just have no pride, but I'm pretty dang proud when I drive Marge around town. She and I have come a long way from back when we started this project.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

6.564919762091796656 miles per gallon

But if I round up, it is 7 mpg. And that is close enough to 10 mpg to tell the wife that it gets almost 15, right?

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Fired up

I spent a couple of hours trying to get the truck started this evening. Since it would not turn over at all, I checked the carb to make sure it was getting fuel. Then I pulled the spark plugs to clean them and to check the gap on them all. They were wet but did not look too bad.

While the plugs were out, I hooked up the compression gauge. The results were probably not very accurate, since the engine was not warmed up first, but it will give me a set of numbers to compare, when I can do a compression test on a warm engine.

Cylinder 1, 130 PSI
Cylinder 3, 135 PSI
Cylinder 5, 125 PSI
Cylinder 7, 120 PSI

Cylinder 2, 120 PSI
Cylinder 4, 135 PSI
Cylinder 6, 130 PSI
Cylinder 8, 130 PSI

The last time I ran a compression test, the measurements were all over the board. I had a much higher percentage of variance from the lowest to the highest cylinder and from one side to the other. Now I am interested to see how it does once it is warmed up.

After I cleaned the plugs and reinstalled them, the truck started like a champ. I did not run it for long though, since I knew I was not going to run another comp test tonight. Dinner was calling.