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  • #46
    Got a little more work done on the Thug Wednesday.

    The brakes on all four corners finished, just need to be bled.
    Four new Afco shocks and a pair of new springs.
    Most of front suspension on
    I was going to sell the 580ci/572-16 head engine because the 572 heads want so much RPMs, but I've decided to use it after all in the Thug as the machinist s taking a very long time to do my blocks.
    Ordered 30' of #10 AN hose, a new 5gal aluminum fuel cell, a pair of custom aluminum weight boxes, and trying to negotiate a fuel system from fuelab so I don't has to use the Aeromotive I use to have on the car

    I hope to have the trunk looking like new and the fuel lines finished by Dec 10th, then get the motor and transmission in the car, then the new wiring, then the interior, and finally the the final trim assembly so I can get to the track in mid February to shake down.








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    • #47
      A little over a week ago, my wife and went on a cruise. While we were gone my yardman and youngest daughter (Hope) painted +1600' of fence cream and brown. I snapped a coupe photos while mowing yesterday.





      While I've been working on the Thug, organizing my shop and setting up my new truck - my yardman spent two full days detailing my motorhome, as my wife and will be taking t next week to Indiana for 7-10 days of warranty work. I'll pull my new Ram 4x4 behind it and we'll go visit my out-laws in Western New York until they're finished with the Coach. I've been running around getting a roll up bed tonneau and the tow plate/wiring. I'll install it all next week before we leave.



      The front porch of the Barnaminium has needed paint for some time, and had my yardman do that yesterday.



      and Hope has been pulling out the old landscaping stone and weeds, so that she and my yardman can level the Earth under where the cut stone will edge, and then I'll get about 4 yards of mulch for the beds. They'll do that and paint the two 40' storage containers while I'm gone.





      And finally, for this shop diary entry, of the rods and pistons from the Indy motor that got windowed in Commerce last year, only three rods and four pistons were left that didn't have any marks on them. I guess I need to take up art welding because of all unusable engine parts.




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      • #48
        So I buy this new Ram about three weeks ago to replace my 13 year old Ford. I use to tow the Ford behind my motorhome as I'd installed a tow bar bracket and wired it up for the lights to work when towed. I'd made a motorhome warranty appointment with the factory back in July and the soonest they could get me in was frst week of December. The plan was to tow my truck up to the factory in Indiana, drop off the Coach, and then head to Western New York so my wife can visit with her family, until Coach is ready fr me to come get. Problem is the new truck wasn't set up to be flat towed. So I ordered all of the parts, and this is how my last three days have gone.

        Tuesday the the Blue Ox Bracket that goes behind the bumper and the tow bar hooks up to with removable mounts got installed.




        Yesterday, I spent most of the day under the truck, weaving two wiring kits spliced together (I guess no one else tows anything bigger than a car) from front to back of truck. It was a PITA keeping it out of sight, away from anything could pinch, not attached to anything that might someday need to be removed, not mounted to anything that can move differently to the frame, and routed up to tail lights. I wired to a 6 Round up front (mounted to tow bar bracket) and spliced into the tail light with 4 diodes, as I have LED lights. It sounds easy, but took me five hours before I could test - and I got nothing. Damon was at the shop and helped me trouble shoot. We tested the 7-Flat to 6-Round cable, and it worked when E-Meter's probes were stuck into the cable, so it was assumed my wring was the issue, and we chased our tails trying to find in truck wiring. When no logical reason was, found Damon took a look at the cable and noticed the female pins were pushed back too far into socket to make a connection with the male pins. I called Dallas (He sells motorhomes) and had him bring home a replacement cord end for when Id see him in morning. I stayed another couple of hours wrapping everything water tight and remounting lights and the front 6-Round.

        Dallas' Harley was at my shop getting new tires and he had my Geezerglide. The plan was for him to bring my bike to the house in morning, give me the cord end, and Id take him to shop to get his Scoot.The Porte-cochere at my house is so narrow that I might have an inch on each side getting Dually in. Once in I had to make a hard angle to right so Dallas would be able to get my Harley by it and into the garage. In thirteen years I've never put a scratch on my Ford, but I managed to screw up my Ram in less than a month. I cant see shit at night and caught the rear fender on the corner of the house.These new trucks have metal as thin as Aluminum foil. I was going slow and stopped immediately.

        I took it to friend that owns a body shop, and a good buddy cash price is $1070 because of triple stage paint. I wont be able to get it fixed before I leave tomorrow night.



        So back to shop I finished the wiring and tested.



        Hiding the wiring in the wheel well without attaching to anything that moves or may to someday need to be removed was the biggest challenge. The Cummins and intercooler take up a lot of room.


        I

        I attached to frame every 16" and wrapped in convoluted tubing by any sharp area.



        With that finally finished, I started on powder coated Aluminum truck cover strong enough to stand on. That was a heavy bitch. Took my yardman and I about two hours to install as the destructions were sketchy.




        So I think I'm now good to go to hook truck to Coach and head to the Great White Wastland
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        • #49
          The cage in the Texas Thug was scuffed and painted in Black Hammertone, and the seats were reinstalled. The lighting of the photos is weak.

          The heads are ready to pick up from machine shop, and I expect the motor to be fully assembled by Friday. I have the new aluminum fuel cell, a pair of battery mounts ready to go. A pair or ballast boxes will be in Thursday and hopefully the fuel system will be in next week so I can get the trunk finished and run new fuel lines and 00 battery cable to front of car.

          More updates to follow.



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          • #50
            A lot of paint and stain slung by my daughter and an older guy who I have working for me a few days a week, while I was working on the Thug.



            Four Pieces of out door furniture got a good coat of Thompson's Weatherseal.





            As did the playground I put up for the grandkids, when they visit at the shop


            Made some Quick & Dirty rails for my open trailer, and I went to get three yards of mulch so Hope and Epi can mulch around the barnaminium. I need to take my new truck to collision shop in morning, so I needed to get today to keep them busy.






            Put a latch on driveway gate




            and Epi was painting the two blue 40' containers



            ​​​​​​​
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            • #51
              Man, keep 'em coming! I can't stop reading your Race Shop Diary.

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              • #52
                • Engine for Thug done to point where it is only waiting for heads to come back from Machine Shop and Oil Pump gasket. No Photos
                • I got the parts organized for the 440 going into the Vitamin C, cleaned, Organized and ordered. Waiting on block and rotating back from Machine Shop No Photos
                • Got all of the parts cleaned and ready for the 580ci Mega Block Motor. Waiting for block (new Sleeves) and and new rotating (balanced) to get back from Machine shop. No photos
                • Got all of the parts Cleaned and wrapped from block windowed in Whale. Need new block, crank, oil pan, four pistons, five rods and heads repaired before that can get built. No Photos
                • Painting Larger Cargo containers finished No Photos
                • A little trunk work on Thug done, no photos
                • The mulching done Photos below





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                • #53
                  Engine done to the heads, which should be ready Monday or Tuesday





                  I have a cart set up to finish a little metal work around the tubs, and some seam sealer.



                  I have another cart set up with weight boxes, 5 gal fuel cell, battery hold downs, spatter paint, fuel line, new tail lights, lens, housings, and gaskets. I'll be finishing the trunk, fuel lines and battery cable next week.



                  I've cleaned and ordered everything I need to reassemble the Mega Block motor with 572 heads. Just waiting on the block to receive new sleeves, be machined and the rotating balanced.



                  Finally, here's a photo of the pistons and rods from the windowed motor, before I chunked into the future art bin.



                  I bought a real nice grill without any dents or dinks, just needs a little polish after I cut up another grill to make it a A990 grill.

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                  • #54
                    Engine done, except for Smith Bros Push Rds, due tomorrow.



                    i wish the Aerospace Vacuum pump had a snout that allowed the engine to be turned over with a breaker bar.

                    Engine bay ready to accept engine (after cross link taken back out). Will have to change mounts from the Elephant Ears I use to run, to the motor plate.


                    Got the underside patched and sealed where needed, and most everything out of trunk. I'll pull old weight box and all thread battery hold down tomorrow, and mock up tomorrow. Then I'll need and install an aluminum skin to clean up all of the bolt/hose/fuel pump holes. Then scuff, mask, and paint.



                    Bumpers were rough sanded and imperfections skimmed with Bondo. Tommorrow comes the finish sanding and a trip to the wrap guy, to wrap in chrome



                    Superbird washed, covered, and back into bubble



                    I kade a rin to Soil Supermarket for four yards of mulch.



                    and the motorhome washed, as were going capoing 27th-2nd.


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                    • #55
                      I started the day pushing the Whale into the shop. I'll soon start stripping, bagging, tagging and binning.



                      I finished sanding the fiberglass bumpers, wrapped them, and made an 80-mile round trip to drop off to get wrapped in Chrome.



                      The valve covers on the Thug's engine were badly stained. I tried scrubbing with a stiff brush and solvent, but they still looked like crap. So I painted Burgundy to match the car, and let them dry in 80-degree bright sun all afternoon. I used 12oz of paint (6 coats) before I got it as smooth as I wanted it.




                      I installed the Thug's Door Cards with new handles. It did require a run to Lowes.





                      A friend made me up this lettering a few years ago. I should have put them on a car sooner, as it was a bitch getting the paper off after a coupe of years.





                      I was going to work on the trunk, but I need some hardware to do the tail lights, and I need to do that first?

                      The steering column was taken down to bare metal (forgot to photo), and its hanging, waiting for some gloss Black paint in morning, before the cold front comes in over the weekend.



                      Photo of the Tubular Upper/lower QA1 Control Arms in front and Aerospace Components Brakes on all four corners. This is the third car I've replaced the Wilwoods with Aerospace Components. Don't worry about a little flash on the rotors. It will be gone when I break in the pads.



                      I needed to leave a little early to order parts, so I covered the Thug and put the freshly painted Valve Covers on the Engine - before locking up.




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                      • #56


                        Afternoon photos. Smith Bros push rods came in and got dropped into motor, TD Rockers mounted and lash set cold. Vacuum pump line made. Plugs installed. Head oiling lines and sending switches screwed in. The missing ARP head washers (Thanks Again Indy!) came in as I was leaving, so they’ll wait until next week. Carb tops taken off and inspected to see if they needed rebuilt. Looked good.




                        Ordered 1350 U Joints and Billet trans yoke. I’ll strip and paint next week. Planned the fuel system and ordered the proper amount of 90/45/straight hose ends.

                        Took hood off Thug as the engine and trans will have to go in as a unit so motor plate mounts can get welded in.




                        Steering clear column was painted, plugs found for wipers, SFI fireproof cage padding installed and a little shop clean up.










                        Got quite a bit done, but still have a long way to go to get this car ready for Testing in early February
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                        • #57
                          The backup plan for in case the Thug isn't ready for March race has been the Vitamin C. Finally got the 440 block back from machinist Thursday, and spent Friday with soap, water, brushes washing all nooks and crannies - and with white paper towels and tranny fluid wiping out cylinders until clean. Got new pistons and cam about 100 passes ago when I went from the 426 block to 440, but bought new rods, crank, bearings, rings for this build. Rotating should be back on Tuesday and assembly goes down Wednesday and Thursday.





                          also laid out the Zombie Gnomes and Flamingo that I'd gotten for Christmas.




                          Setup a new notebook for manuals, race log and service records for the Thug.



                          My youngest son Justin, is a SSgt in the Air Force. I bought him a new car (Genesis from Doug Duell) when he enlisted, but it now it a fairly used up high miler so I traded him a 13,000 mile SUV (his son is four and the Coupe was not a great car for a family man) that I'd bought for my youngest daughter, but since had given her my F150, as she wanted a truck. Anyway and need to put new brakes and tires on it, service it, and clean it up to sell.



                          Back to the race cars, the plan is to have both the Thug and Vitamin C ready to test in Mid February, and maybe take them both to Florida.

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                          • #58
                            Sanded and painted the Thug's driveshaft so new Billet Yoke and new U Joints can be installed



                            Mowed five acres as it had been over a month



                            tested some 3M adhesive remover on half of my Lexan back window, then showed my daughter how to use it so she can do that tomorrow.



                            Cleaned up the Genesis Turbo Coupe I bought my son when he went in Air Force, and traded him fr a 13000 mile Loaded Escape my daughter had been driving.



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                            • #59
                              Engine and Transmission now in car




                              The headers I use to run in this car went into the Big Red Ram, when I converted the car to an automatic for Dallas. The headers that I ran in BRR, when it was a stick, wont work in this car with an automatic. I'll need to borrow Dallas' headers until I can get some new ones made.

                              I'm hoping that the steering link will still go through the Charlie's Oil Pan, as I'm using a new motor plate to replace the Elephant Ears I use to have. Also hoping the driveshaft still fits. I painted it last week, ordered a new billet trans yoke and 1350 U-Joints. However, while the rear of driveshaft is a 1350, the Ford 9" was not. I just had to order a non-standard U-Joint from Strange.

                              Steering column is now also in the car.




                              I also strung new 00 battery cable front to back.



                              Still have a ton to do before Bradenton, and more cold weather due in next week. I bought a propane hater for the shop. Hopefully, it will keep it warm enough.
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                              • #60
                                Got the new tail light installed



                                Swapped out the chrome fastening hardware for the door cards to black.





                                Stripped everything out of trunk and started mocking up where I'm going to locate the fuel cell, a pair of 16v batteries and a pair of weight boxes; and where metal and frame cross members (to legally mount) will be going.



                                Started fabricating fuel cell mount



                                And stripped out the rear (fuel cell, battery hold downs ...) and under (Fuel lines, Fuel pump/filters, battery cable...) of the wagon - to get it ready for paint.


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