Thursday, March 24, 2016

a productive day (for me)

i am pretty darn pleased with what i did today.
sure, i didn't really accomplish anything that allowed me to actually cross something off my to-do list for the day, but i spent several hours working on the car and i did get stuff done.

i've had to abandon the rear axle project due to some stuck parts, as i await the arrival of some other parts, so i've moved back to the brakes.

after cutting the line, since i couldn't get the connections to budge, i went back to get this bit unhooked...and it just popped out of the bracket. of course, as you can probably guess based on the amount of rust everywhere else, the clips were all rusted and difficult to open up and get the lines out, but i did it. more than one time i was really happy to have my safety glasses on!
 in order to get the proportioning valve out, i had to cut pretty much every line and pull it out through the engine bay. the plug that leads to the electrical unit was pretty stuck on, so i couldn't get a good grip on that until i pulled the prop valve out. basically, the old brake lines came out in no less than 5 pieces. i'd like to take this opportunity to voice my appreciation for the line cutters i happened to find in a box of tools from dad's house.
i was about to get the old master cylinder out, too, when i thought i might need a second set of hands to do something inside the car (remembering from a video i watched), so i wanted to be sure before tackling that one today
i'm still struggling to figure out how to get the parking brake lines out. mostly because i did this...
why on earth did i paint that POR15 over this line and connection? how in the world will i get that off? a struggle for another day...i didn't have it in me today.

so i moved onto the front suspension/brake conversion. i wanted to get all the unnecessary bits off so i could replace it with the new parts i have for the conversion, but i need to take a look at my reference videos and correspondence again, first. 
i'm embarrassed to admit how long i struggled with this next bit. i tried unscrewing the line. i tried cutting the line, thinking i could get the impact wrench out once the line was gone. at that point i noticed how the line was spinning and realized i just needed to remove a clip. i've never had more 'doh' moments than with this project. really. most days i'm glad i'm working alone, so no one sees my stupid moments...though, i could save a lot of time having someone there to say...'hey, dummy. just pull the clip out.' 
every day's an adventure, though, and i'm actually enjoying it!!
once i got the last lines disconnected from the backing plates, i was able to grab my favorite tool, the impact wrench. and this is where i thank my big brother for the electric wrench he gave me. when i first started this project (3 years ago?!) i thought i was so cool. and i went to Harbor Freight Tools to get my first tools. i had been taking a basic auto repair class and we used those impact wrenches all the time. so i bought my very own. and brought it home, ready to get the rims off the car. and realized i don't have compressed air, like i do when i'm in class!! i borrowed an air compressor from a friend, but that wasn't really practical. Dan came over after that and gave me his wrench. i have been super grateful for that. sure i could've bought my own, but this way i save money and i have a nice story to tell.
getting back to today's work....
this was the last of the tasks i was able to finish today. i am not 100% sure how much more of these bits need to come off. and i'm still nervous about the torsion bar and how the removal of the ball joints and control arms will affect that. 
more videos and research and i'll get to that in the next couple days, though.
now that the brake lines are out, i can start putting the new ones in.
i need to get the old master cylinder out, so i can put the new one in.
i need to get that foolish parking brake issue taken care of so i can put in the new lines when the equalizer shows up in the mail next week.
i need to figure out the drain/fill plug on the differential cover. 'plan B' plug showed up today, so if i have to i can drill the old plug out.
the axle shaft flange gaskets will be here next week, too, so i can rent a slide hammer and swap those gaskets out. 
i still need to get my lazy butt to the hardware store for bolts so i can get the leaf springs in.
it always seems like just a bunch of little loose ends, but the snags i hit along the way tend to turn it into more time consuming tasks. but it is nice to finally feel like i'm making some progress on my own here. my safety net of car guys is giving me more confidence, of course. 


  1. I'm inspired to go work on my car this weekend!

    1. hope you had some nice weather and got some quality time in with the 'cuda!

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.