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Building of the Texas Thug

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  • #31
    Today, sprayed four cans of spatter paint, put fan on it for three hours, and final mock up after adjusting for Push/pull battery cut off.



    Got the Driver's name on door.



    Replaced the worn wood grain on steering wheel of Diplomat.



    Went to machinist to see if Vitamin Cís heads were ready - as Iím also getting a new motor in that car as a Plan B for Florida, in case I run into a wall on the Thug. He showed my how the valves were rattling in the heads because of worm out guides, and is replacing them.



    Stopped by Dallasí house to pick up his headers from the Big Red Ram. I need to make sure they fit (went from Elephant Ears to Motor Plate so engine moved slightly) before ordering new ones.


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    • #32
      Long day at shop today. Bottom end of Vitamin Cís (backup car) motor done. 440 block .040 over, new Eagle stock stroke crank, Eagle H-beam rods with ARP 2000 bolts, Clevite 77 bearings, Ross Dome Top Pistons, Coyles 9-way timing set, Milodon oil pump, bronze distributor gearÖ

      Heads needed 2 valves, but having machinist replace entire set as age is unknown. Had the heads at my shop to check clearance Ė then back to machine shop for when the valves come in.

      Had to run to Metal Supermarket to get a 3/32Ē aluminum plate to replace the Charlieís oil panís baffle that was damaged. Had to run to Fastenal to order U Nuts to fasten baffle to oil pan. They wonít be in until Monday, so the oil pan couldnít be put on Ė so short block in bag. Monday Iíll tape off and paint it and intake. Iíll paint heads when I get them back midweek. Had to order valve covers as one walked off somewhere. Also ordered another box of head bolts. For some reason I thought two heads worth were in a box.

      On the Texas Thug, Steering link is in and tested to not interfere with oil pan. Drive shaft with new U Joints and billet is in. Ordered a 16/12 volt step down to wire car. Received the $300 chrome paint for the bumpers.

      Pulled ignition box out of Whale for installation into the Thug.


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      • #33
        Not thug related, but I put a handle on my aluminum roll-up bed cover. I donďt know why they donít come with one.



        Also not Thug related, but simultaneously Iím getting the Vitamin C ready Ė which is mostly building an engine for it. Just waiting for Machine Shop to finishing milling, new valves and guides. Yesterday I painted the short block Hemi Orange. Today I masked and painted the Cross Ram Intake.



        Now Thug related, I quite by accident (looking for another part), found the Thugís missing custom headers, that was in a box in my shedís attic. I can now give Dallasí (who was so gracious to pull his off to loan me) his headers back to him.



        I next marked holes and then pulled out the mocked up the fuel cell, battery hold downs and weight boxes. I then started the process of breaking drill bits drilling through 1/8″ aluminum plate in trunk, and the steel bracing underneath. The orange marks were for 1/2″ Grade 8 hardware for the weight boxes, yellow for 5/16″ hardware for the battery hold downs, and silver for the 3/8″ Grade 8 hardware mounting fuel cell. This stuff is going no where should I wreck.



        Iíll hopefully finish bolting the rest of if in tomorrow.
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        • #34


          Starting with Vitamin C, the oil pan is on Short block and a polished up motor plate on. Still waiting on heads.

          Headers and tethers on the Thug. It's pretty damn tight in there.



          Everything is bolted into the truck of Thug. Next up is wire up batteries, charging studs and cut off. Then on to fuel system.



          Then waited around for a prospective buyer of my 2006 F350 truck. He had me drive while he monitored everything on a notebook. It all checked out, so he gave me a bunch of Dead Presidents and drove into the darkness.


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          • #35
            Yesterday, I opened a ton of car parts boxes, and put the parts on the carts in the area of the build going on.



            Voltage step down, seat belts, and window net for Thug.



            Valve covers and Head bolts to complete Vitamin C engine.

            Then started work on electrical by running and clamping the 1/0 cable front to back, installing charging studs, running independent grounds from each battery to frame plus ground between both batteries, and negative charging stud to frame.



            The underside is not yet finished. I need to drill holes in angle iron to match the the bolts of fuel cell/weights boxes/battery hold downs (mounted on 1/8" plate in trunk), and weld them between the frame rails so they become cross members securing those items in trunk. Then I'll trim the bolts to proper length and touch up paint.

            I ordered some 1/0 crimp terminal ends, which I need to finish positive terminal wiring. Yes, I have a hydraulic crimper to ensure they're securely attached to 1/0 positive cable.

            Other shop news of day was photoing a Genesis I need to list for sale, and released a trapped skunk that had been living under a container, about two miles away.










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            • #36
              My 19-year-old Daughter, Hope, has been working three days a week at the shop - and is becoming very handy. Today she polished the Thug's front wheels and wash my incredibly dirty truck.



              I'm simultaneously getting the Vitamin C ready and assembling the Thug. The Vitamin C's new engine is finished, it's transmission painted, headers cleaned, and everything is ready to stab it into the car tomorrow.



              0/1 cable run and clamped from front to back of Thug, cut off switch installed, and new 0/1 positive and negative cables made up and routed. I'll have a friend check my work and then hook up positive and button up rear panel.



              I have a little more work under the rear of car to brace weight boxes and fuel cell, and touch up paint. Hoping to get Vitamin C's engine and transmission in tomorrow. Next week's goals are fuel system in Thug, start and drive Vitamin C, bleed Thug's brakes and put wheels on, and finish Thug's electrical.

              I was hoping to get a Product Sponsor for the fuel system, but wasn't successful. I'm going to have to use an old Aeromotive system I use to run on this car when it was black.
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              • #37
                The temperature went from 42 degrees to 80 degrees with a dense fog, and so the shop floor sweated completely wet faster than it could be mopped up. Some work was done yesterday.



                Seats were pulled back out of the Thug, so under dash wiring could be inspected. It is a mess, so all new wiring will get strung.



                My daughter polished the Thug's wheels, and now she needs to get the polish off the slicks.



                Forward movement engine limiter fabbed up and welded to K Frame.



                Fuel regulator mounted to rat roaster intake.

                Today floor was still soaked and my Shop Rat was at hospital, with his daughter who was having surgery. I had tons of parts delivered today, so I set up carts for tomorrow's work and put away spare parts.



                About two years of oil filters.



                A very nice STR14 I bought for the Vitamin C arrived. I'll run the Vitamin C with the Cross Ram for a baseline before throwing the Rat Roaster on.



                Have a cart set up to finish the Vitamin C, start and tune.



                Set up cart for installing new fuel system.



                And another cart for under hood, harness, net and running new wire.



                Distilled water for radiator.



                Finally put away spare parts that came in.


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                • #38
                  Mapped out the fuel line routing, and got it plumbed as far as first filter. At lot of cutting and grinding to make sure lines have a straight shot and are away from sharp edges.



                  Then took it back off so all of paint can be touched up on Monday. I'm still waiting for the fuel pump so I can finish. I expect to be finished Monday.



                  Want to see if I can flip Vacuum Pump around, so that regulator is on top and puke tank line on bottom.

                  New red and black 10 gauge, along with a red and green 12 gauge wires were wrapped in convoluted tubing and strung front to back for tail lights and fuel pump relay. I'll secure to frame Monday.



                  The cutting, grinding and mocking up took a lot than expected, so it was late before I could cover the car and head home.




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                  • #39
                    On Thursday, electrical from switches to fuel pump's relay and then to pump, and to the tail lights was finished. I ran it nice and neat in convoluted tubing. The rats nest of wires under the dash was totally ripped out, and all new wires to headlights (not terminated to headlights yet) and gauges - both with a 12v step down; and wires run from switches towards the front to the water pump, fan and trans cooler relays - although also not terminated yet. I need to get the radiator and headlights in so all of that can be finished.



                    I mounted the fuel fuel pump and filter, ran and secured all of the fuel lines to regulator, and made a grommet for the line passing through the trunk. I ordered a 1/2 dozen more Earls fittings and hose ends, and that will be finished when they come in. Ran fuel pump power and ground in small convoluted tubing and properly secured.




                    Yesterday (Friday) I had intended to spend time to start the Vitamin C, and to sand/chrome paint the fiberglass bumpers - but I had a 8:50 am appointment with an eye surgeon that took over two hours. I received extra strong dilatation drops and some violet tint in my eyes, and don't know how I even drove to the shop. All I saw was light purple and couldn't do shit, so the Vitamin C has to wait until next week.

                    The Thug is almost done. Radiator, headlights, grill, seats, and bumpers need to mounted. Front end electrical terminated. Engine, Transmission and Rear end fluids added. Shifter bracket/cable attached, and adjusted. Front end aligned, car scaled, all nuts and bolts under car checked, and the pre-load set. Engine then needs to be pre-oiled, started and tuned. Car as to be ran through the gears while on the stands, taken off stands, driven around. Finally all the valves run and all of the nuts and bolts checked again before it can be taken to the track for Test and Tune.

                    While I'm rounding third for home, there's still too much to do - all of which is safety critical and expensive if not right, before the Bradenton race. So I'm not going to not push myself under duress to get it ready for that race. Instead, I'll turn my focus back to Vitamin C next week, and hope all goes well with starting and testing that car before loading it up.


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                    • #40
                      Looks great Dave. I sure like those fancy weight boxes too.

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                      • #41
                        So we started up the Vitamin C, test the transmission, ran the valves, and adjusted the carbs. I drove it eight miles not exceeding 3000 RPM to test it and break it in. Then brought it back to shop to see if I had any leaks, check that the plugs weren't getting smashed by the domed pistons, and tighten header bolts. Will do the same again tomorrow, this time taking up to 5000 rpm - then clean and load up.



                        Then moved onto the Thug.


                        Drilled and grommetted a hole for vent. Waiting for 3/8 aluminum fuel line to make vent, and fuel system is done. Connected Fuelab pump and filter and ran a return line to fuel cell.



                        Made the lines from regulator to carbs



                        Installed Radiator ad trans cooler, wired fan and water pump to relays, got head light wiring started.

                        Should be able to start car when I return from the Bradenton race.


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                        • #42
                          The 3/8" aluminum tubing came in so I finished the vent on Fuel system, so that's completely finished now.



                          Had to dramatically trim the PPP shifter bracket to not interfere with the TTI headers. These are the "before" pics, I'll take "after" pics later. Shifter mounted and Neutral Safety Switch now all wired.



                          I installed a new window net and Cam Lock Safety Harness.



                          Spent about an hour at O'Reillys looking at truck radiator hoses that had the right angles after trimming to fit a custom aluminum radiator and CRI waterpump. Found, trimmed, and installed - but no pics - yet.

                          Since the Texas Thug wasn't going to be ready for race in Bradenton, FL (leaving early Tuesday morning) - there's been a trash to build a new motor and trans for Vitamin C and to install it.



                          Motor and trans were finally installed last week. Tuesday I took it for an 8-mile drive to key in on what adjustments were going tl be needed.



                          Brought back to the shop to run valves and check for leaks by letting it set.

                          I was not at the shop Wednesday, and when I returned Thursday morning there was a small puddle of gas under car. It was discovered to have been an old fuel hose between the regulator and rear carb, so a new one was made and installed.



                          I took it for a harder ride, shifting at 5500 and cruising at about 5500 - which i'm guessing is about 90. No vÓdeo as I felt it prudent to use both hands, instead of holding up phone. 90mph was about the best I could muster on the 35mph narrow and bumpy back road my shop is on. I'm pretty sure a passenger would have puked! There was a little bog of a rolling start, so the carb springs were changed from orange to yellow. There was a little leak at back of one valve cover, so it was changed to a cork gasket. The transmission rolled forward a little in neutral, and wouldn't start two out of five times in Neutral, so a shifter adjustment was made. Also the oil and filter was changed and inspected for trash. Looked very good.

                          Finally, I took it for a very short and not very hard run to make sure all felt well and and then let it sit for a couple hours to look for leaks. All appears well.



                          Today my handyman is cleaning it up while I'm at lake for weekend. I'll load up Monday, spend Monday night at shop, and leave at 5am Tuesday to bang out 900 of the 1100 miles to my first race of 2018. I've had some very bad luck with motors and transmissions, and made dramatic changes. Hopefully my luck changes and I can have a good year
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                          • #43
                            Happy Racing Dave. Cheers

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                            • #44
                              Today at the shop, I unloaded Vitamin C and golf cart. The Whale was moved from lift bay so Vitamin C can go on lift.

                              Pulled cross Ram intake off Vitamin C to put STR14 on, and learned that the Str 14 ports wonít work on a Max Wedge.



                              Looked at the ModMan intake on my 65 Post car that I want to make into a A990 clone, and will swap that on to the Vitamin C. The Valve covers had a lot of milk on the inside. Got concerned but oil looked good when drained.



                              Pressure checked radiator and it held pressure with a very little milkiness coming out of a head bolt. Hopefully a little Liquid Glass will seal that up. The car has been going through some major temperature and humidity changes in last couple of months so Iím sure thatís where the milky oil cane from. The Vitamin C still needs to have the valves run after a fresh 10 quarts of 20-50 conventional oil put in, and a half pint of liquid glass in radiator to seal any minor leak. Weíll check it again and change to Synthetic after Atlanta in a couple weeks.

                              On Thug, checked and adjusted Caster, filled up rear end with Royal Purple gear lube, checked all nuts under the car, finished everything under hood, cut up a near perfect grill to make a two headlight A990, and wired the head lights.



                              After my daughter was finished cleaning the coach, she washed all of the weights and I hit them with two coats of primer and a coat of hammered tone Grey. I still need to hit with another coat of paint, weigh and mark with the weight. I was tired of dirty hands from the raw cast iron when handling.



                              Sorted through three sets of Big Block Hooker Comp headers and two sets of small block. Iíll keep the better set of coated comps and sell the set needing repair and the smaller tube Street/Strip. The small block are crap so they went into scrap pile.




                              Tomorrow is packing day at the Katy house as the movers will be here 9am Thursday to take a truckload to lake house.
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                              • #45
                                This is the first road test of the Texas Thug. Drove it 2.5 miles varying rpm between 2500-4000. Turned around and turned up wick as much as I could on a rough and narrow 35mph tractor road. A little over 100 was best I could do while holding phone. Farmers are complying cows arenít giving milk and bulls arenít mating.
                                 
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