So in my last blog entry, I spoke of 12 hours spent on Saturday moving three cars and three truck loads of parts from my old Shop in Richmond to my new shop in Beasley. The old shop was bought by one of my brothers, and he only uses it for storage - so I'm not too rushed. I try to once a month spend a long day moving stuff. I still have five cars there, and many trailer loads of parts, furniture, and other stuff to deal with. I have no covered room for the cars until I sell some; no more room in two shipping containers, a 16x16 shed with attic, storage garage, attic in barnaminium or shop for parts and furniture. I'll need to go to old shop with camera in near future and start listing on eBay.

So back to my week - first the related photos and then the explanations.

Got my 46 Olds Project to the shop and washed

I started this project with my son Dallas many years ago, but its been stalled for about three years. The steering wheel turns, but tires don't.

The below is a very nice Little Red Express I bought many years ago for $11000, and put a little money into. A few years later I bought a like new Little Red with AC for $21000, and Dallas wanted this one, so I sold it to him for $11000. Two years ago he needed money for an engagement ring and wanted to sell, so I gave him $14000 for it and allowed him to drive it whenever he wanted if he'd get it running (it had been neglected), insure and register it. He honored none of those commitments to me - so I took it to my new shop to fix and sell.

The Thug is still on the trailer under an awning as I needed to use the other bay first to do some quick repairs on Vitamin C, Diplomat, Whale, and 'MY" Little Red Express.

Then there are Three truck bed loads of parts, tools, and Thug stuff.

And in addition to parts all over shop floor, tools needing be put away, and benches that are a mess - I have three bikes needing work and a zero turn needing new blades before I mow the five acres this weekend.

So I take Monday off to stay at home to pay bills, reconcile checking accounts, work on new car calendar, write a three page letter that Hope will read to herself on her Senior trip (school tradition) - with advice and motivation for future, and other work around the house.

Tuesday, I went to shop and unboxed all bins and put the stuff away; open about twenty boxes that came in from Summit Racing, Harbor Freight, and Amazon; and moved the Whale back into the open bay. The immediate goals are:
  • New U Joints on Whale
  • New Bronze bushing in Whale's modor
  • Clean Whale's radiator neck replace cap
  • Get LRE Running
  • Get Stereo in my LRE
  • Fix steering in Olds and Evaluate what's needed to finish
  • Battery hold down on Diplomat
  • Swap out short filter on Vitamin C's engine
  • Wash both race cars and put in trailers
  • Fix Drifter 1500 which isvrunning like shit
  • Rear tire and stereo on Ole Blue
  • Baby Ape Handlebars on Geezerglide
  • Blades on Zero turn
  • Solar panel on Gooseneck to charge battery
  • New Tool box, remote, and solar panel on open trailer
  • Radio in gooseneck
  • Passthrough outside mount on stacker for weather station
  • Put an original 60 Plymouth Steering Wheel on car
Wednesday the thrashing began. I have good help most Wednesdays.

  • Ran to O'Reilly's to borrow their U-Joint tool (just ordered one for future) and replaced both U Joints
  • Replaced Bronze gear
  • Cleaned Neck and replaced radiator cap
  • Decided to put off on the steering wheel on Whale until I lose more weight as it might interfere with 5pt. Harness cam release
When tried to start up to time the Whale, we got clicks from starter despite having full charged battery with 17.5 volts. Jacked up to check starter motor, but cables were tight. Found a little oil dripping coming from drivers side VC gasket, s I'll need to address that. We were able to jump the starter relay to start and time the motor. I'll replace the relay Friday. As long as I have the Valve Cover off - I'll cut a hole and weld on a bung with screw on cap to fill oil.

Zero Turn - Changed blades, although the center blade (Which I broke a bolt into and had to drill out and Helicoil the last time I changed blades) wouldn't come out with an air impact with 125# , or with heat and Justice Brother's penetrating oil - but did finally come out with 18v impact and fully charged battery. Go figure

My Kawasaki 1500 was lugging terribly at speeds faster than 65 after about five miles. I initially thought it was overheating from low coolant, but coolant level was fine. I thought I'd do the simple stuff first. I pulled two plugs and although they looked good, I ran to O'Reillys and got a pair of replacements. When I got back to the shop and looked up the gap I found out there were also two plugs on the other side. Hey I'm a Harley Guy! Ran back to O'Reilly's and got another pair. Put all of the plugs in gapped .032 and took the bike for a 33 mile ride at 75-95 mph and running through the gears about 10 times. Ran like a raped ape, but a little pinging going on from what I guess to be 3000-4000 RPM (I don't have a tach) in second and third gear. It might be Carbon, might be the ECU gives too much timing when warm - so guess I need to think about it and get on a Kawasaki board. I pulled the air cleaner, and while element was clean, the yellow foam on both sides of it was decomposing and little yellow specs were all over. I put rag in throttle body, blew out all the yellow specs, and order new element and Oil Filter.

Little Red Express
  • There was no battery, so I had to go buy one. Also bought a carb rebuilt kit for the AFB (should be a Thermoquad) on it. Noticed a horrible leaking mixture of 5/16" hard line and 3/8 rubber hose and fuel filter, so also bought a 2' length of 5/16 brake line, correct fuel filter, and 5/16 rubber line to connect everything up. Also bought two gallons of Antifreeze as the radiator was empty.
  • When Radiator was filled with the first gallon of antifreeze, it went to floor as bottom hose wasn't connected and there was not clamp. What do they say about AssUMing? Cleaned floor, found clamp, hooked up hose and resumed refilling.
  • Changed distributer cap and rotor. Intend to change plugs and wires later.
  • Rerouted a few firewall wires resting on exhaust manifold, bent up and hooked up a fuel hardline - and hooked up battery
  • Started the truck using quite a bit of carb cleaner and got it running, albeit poorly
  • When carb was taken off to rebuild, it was fount intake is spread bore and carb square bore. Rebuilt and threw on to see if there were any leaks. Truck actually ran well, but ran just a touch better when carb cleaner sprayed at rear of carb.
  • Ordered a square/spread adaptor
  • While running, the truck wasn't charging. The regulator looks new and there was an old one in the truck, so we'll assume its the alternator. Took it off and threw in bed of truck for next O'Reilly's run.
So I still need plugs & wires; quart of alcohol in tank and 5 gallons 93 Octane; replace leaky Valve cover gaskets and wipe down motor; have a ticking coming from #7 at exhaust manifold so its either a gasket or crack in manifold. And of course the alternator. Then wash, wax, put back in my name, register and insure, drive a couple tanks of gas through it, and list for sale.

46 Olds Street Rod

When I picked the car up, it was on jack stands with a full car length/width of kitty litter under it - displaying a whole rainbow of colors. The steering wheel turned, but not the wheels. It literally took a half day to get it loaded because of how it wasn't completely in front of garage opening, no way to get trailer jacknifed straight behind because of obstacles, and a bottom ash surface outside building. I thought I was going to pass out mid way through wrestling with this bitch on a 90-something degree day. I resolved that I would greatly turn up the wick in physical labor, despite the pain, to lose weight - but I often have regrets.

With the time left, all we could do was to pull the steering column out and find that it was lucky someone hadn't been killed. At the bottom of the column is a thin walled (maybe .015) shaft that was connected to yoke with a bolt as a set screw. The bolt both Collapsed the thin wall shaft and wore groove in it. The plan is to weld a 1/2" bolt into the end and drill through the walls of shaft and bolt for either a large roll pin or set screw.

By then, I was at shop for 12 hours an mechanic helper there 8 hours, so I called it a day. I still need to move the Olds over after fixing steering, go through whole car and come up with a plan to finish as a quality Street Rod for me to drive often.

My newest car is a 2009 Challenger SRT8 and I bought my truck was bought in early 2005. I rather drive my old stuff than the bing of new stuff. While my wife gets a new car every couple of years (currently a 2016 Volvo XC90) because she does like bling, I doubt I'll ever buy a new car again for myself. I do intend to buy a new truck in next couple of years, but most likely a 1/2 ton and keep Dually for towing.

So that's my week, I'm a sore mother!