Sandblasted my used wheels and shot some fresh paint on them, look pretty good in my opinion! Ordered up some new tires as well, I went with the Yokohama Geolander's in 285/75-16......the rims are 16x8.
Well, it started out as a simple pull the differential, clean it up, paint it, replace bearings, and the brakes and move on...easy right? It is never that easy and this little piece of the rebuild wasn't easy either as it turns out that the differential was full of mud. The gear lube which came out looked like tan chocolate milk, first bad sign. Then once I got the short axle side out I looked down the tube and the entire top half had a thick coating of mud and yuk. I did the best I could to clean it out but deep in the back of my head I knew it was going to have to come apart for a more thorough cleaning. Once I pulled the other axle out it just reaffirmed my thought that I was going have to pull the third member out and scrub the axle housing clean. Yes, the axle vent tube was missing and full of dirt. So, I purchased a brush kit used for cleaning the vent tube on the clothes dryer and along with lots of de-greaser and other cleaners I got the axle housing cleaned as well as could be expected. It was pretty nasty!!! None the less I got everything back assembled, and the housing cleaned and painted with all new parts to include new stainless brake lines. It looks pretty good considering how crusty and pitted the metal is. I also added a little protection in case I bang it into some obstacles at some point in the future, but it will be some time before I get that far.
Pretty stoked about my new acquisition, a rear tire carrier which will also hold a high lift jack and two extra fuel cans! A gentleman near me had it sitting around from a previous vehicle so I am the lucky beneficiary. I really wanted something more than just a tire carrier and this will fit the bill. I may need to modify it to clear the brake light since it was originally built for a NAS and I have ROW but that shouldn't be a major hand up. The latch is super solid as I have seen these on many other tire carriers.
So, today I worked on the engine and getting it prepped for install into the rolling chassis. I got most of the ancilliary sheet metal put on the engine to include oil pump, oil pan, timing cover, water pump, thermostat housing, and harmonic balancer. In addition I bought a few dress up items for the engine as well, although they aren't chrome and most people won't even notice I kind of like them. I bought a new aluminum valve cover and aluminum side covers which cover the lifter and pushrod area. I am painting them black like the rest of the engine and then sanding the end of the fins clean so they are shinier aluminum, should look decent. I am going to try and get them installed tomorrow.
I ended up having to buy a new exhaust manifold since the two I had were both cracked and had bolts and studs broken off......bummer! I also got my intake adapter in so the Holley Fuel Injection unit should bolt up nicely!
Just a few more things done tonight. I picked up my new hard lines for my front calipers and installed those along with some longer stainless braided lines to replace the stock rubber lines. I also replaced the top bracket which holds the lines where they come together and also acts as support for the top of the dust shield with some new stainless brackets.
I got the cast aluminum valve cover cleaned up and painted today, looks pretty good in my opinion!
I guess tomorrow will be to get the valve cover bolted down and start working on mounting the intake and exhaust manifolds now that I have all the correct hardware. I am getting there just a bit at a time!
Small update...I got my new stainless brake line back and install the rear one along with the proportioning valve.
While I was there I went ahead and installed the bulkhead mounting brackets which seemed to be marked wrong compared to the ones on the old body, good thing it is still assembled.
I got my steering box off the old frame and started cleaning it up, hopefully I will get it installed later this week after a good paint job and rebuild of the Pitman arm. Things are progressing but just not fast enough, I guess I need to stay home more.
I also pulled my old fuel tank so I could install a new one but found that the new one has an additional hole for an electric pump which I don't need, parts ordered to fill in the hole. In the meantime I have blasted the fuel tank support bracket in preparation for paint and pulled all the bolt on frame tie down points and blasted them as well. I had to order new bolts for them as they were pretty pitted.
I also started unbolting the body from the old frame, I figure shortly after I set the new drivetrain in the new chassis I will get the body back on it for a bit more protection from the elements. Excitement is building!
Oh, and I got my Holley fuel injection in as well!