Well I had two pumps, one that failed somewhere in the piston and the other one that had a rotting hose from the pump to the chuck. I only have to send one back, so I put all the bad parts in the return box and assembled all the good parts into a working pump. I then used that pump to get my tires back up to the minimum 70 pounds per square inch to prevent pinch flats on potholes.
And after I did that I felt like Superman™ so I tried to mount the tires to the wheels I had just mocked up that afternoon. It was a struggle, but as you can see:
I got the front edge even with the bead on the tire, but I need to pump the tire so the back side matches the front.
It’s hard to see from that angle, so this is easier.
So what I do now is talk to my diabetic friends about getting some used needles and syringes to pump up the tires to meet the beads of the rim.
And there’s something good coming on Science Channel, so I have created enough with the words and pictures, Opus the Unkillable
OK I was going to get the extension hose today so I removed the gauge from the pump to take the fitting to the parts shop to get the right sizes on the hose. After I got it off I thought just for due diligence I should leak test the unit to make sure of where the leak was. So guess where the leak was? The end of the hose where it joins the gauge. Now if the leak had been on the other end of the hose or the other side of the gauge I could fix it, but where the hose connects to the gauge is a crimped connection and not something I can fix at home. So now I have to do a warrantee replacement of the pump so I can ride my bike. Fortunately Amazon is sending a replacement pump assembly.
Getting back to the design of the pump, this pump was designed to be non-repairable. What I thought was a male pipe-thread fitting on the gauge turned out to be a self-threading fitting with a sealing ring at the top, sorta like the legendary self-sealing stem bolts of ST:DS9 . This means they didn’t need to worry about clocking the installation of the gauge because it would clock itself without leaking. That also means I can’t just stick another original gauge and hose in there because the threads are already cut and probably wouldn’t match up to the new unit. And to make matters worse the hose connection to the gauge is not one that can be done or undone in your average home shop. So I’m screwed, and not in the fun way. The only thing I can do is see if I can screw a hose into the pump and run the pump without a gauge. But I’m still going to see if I can fix this one because that’s what I do, play with busted stuff and see if I can make it work. I have a brand-new pump that just needs a hose and chuck to work. I WILL make it work.
On the hot rod front, I have sustained a setback but I’m only out about $90 including taxes because everything I bought since the design change to a mid-engine will work with the more traditional design except for the car cover for a 1990-2005 Chrysler Town and Country mini-van. The books on reprogramming the Chrysler PCM are generic enough that unless I end up with a carb instead of fuel injection I’m still good on that, so that brings it down to $45 for the car cover and tax. The steering arms will work because the front suspension and steering are the same for the front and mid-engine versions except for springs and shocks, which I haven’t bought yet.
Something all the design work for the mid-bucket has made me want to do is to use something like the engine and transmission to make a SCCA Solo racing A/Mod car. There are very few rules in A/Mod: 72″ minimum wheelbase, 42″ minimum track, 900 pound minimum weight with driver, roll bar minimums and maximums, and all 4 wheels have to be sprung. There are maximum wing rules, driver coverage body rules, but nothing that would keep me from doing my thing. I really wished over and over I had the budget to do both the hot rod and the A/Mod car. Towing the A/Mod car behind the hot rod would be doubleplus rad.
And I think I have gotten everything out of my system for today.
PSA, Opus the Unkillable
Seriously. I want to show my support, I need a warm hat for long walks at night, and I can’t knit. I also don’t have the funds to buy one even if I knew where to get one. Also I strongly disagree with and disapprove of Cheeto Jesus. For a guy who sponsored a bike race he doesn’t seem to care much about actually being able to use bikes.
Also I got a PM on Twitter (@opusthepoet) that I should do a political blog. Sorry but while I care about politics to a degree I care much more about what politicians are doing to things I care about, like clean air and clean water, and my grandson not having to swim to work when he grows up because of sea level rise due to climate change. I really don’t care which political party is in charge as long as the things like that and personal liberties are protected. Unfortunately we seem to have one side that only protects corporate profits ahead of clean air and water and personal liberties.
On yet another front, my new pump doesn’t work. Instead of using a compression fitting for connecting the gauge to the pump they used a pipe thread fitting. Both of those connect and hold air, the difference is you can’t “clock” the pipe fitting to make it tight when facing a particular direction like you can with a compression fitting, and the gauge keeps hitting the pump frame during the pump action and getting loosened up. The solution of course is to get a hose with a female pipe fitting on one end and a male fitting on the other and use that to bridge the gap between the gauge and the pump so they don’t hit. I could ask for my money back, but I got almost the cheapest pump on Amazon so I guess this is as much my fault as theirs. On the bright side I can use this as practice for building brake lines for the hot rod, and the extra hose length will make using the pump easier as I can hold the gauge in my hand as I pump instead of trying to read it on the ground as it bounces back and forth from being on a foot pump.
On the hot rod front I have discovered the hub spacing using the stock drive axles is going to be too wide for the front axle. I have four alternatives: buy a wider front axle so the front and rear widths match up (expensive, requires custom manufacturing), 2) make the de Dion cage so that the rear axle width matches the front and shorten the stock drive axles to fit (tricky but barely within my capabilities), or 3) get the widest front axle width available without spending for the custom work and live with the difference as it will actually reduce the theoretical difficulties I was having getting the front and rear grip to match through the middle of a corner. Getting a wider front axle also reduces a problem I was trying to work around for wheel lock. Not lock as in too much brake but lock as in how far I can turn the wheel from side to side, in this case wider is better as the frame is a fixed width, and the further I push the front wheels out the more I can turn them from side to side, without hitting the rest of the car. 4) Mix of 3 and 2. Buy the widest axle and then narrow the drive axles to fit. Cheaper than 1 with all the work of 2 but the car will look right. Handling would still be interesting to sort out.
So, tomorrow I have meetings about the church, then grocery shopping, looks like a busy day.
Billed @€0.02, Opus the Unkillable
First the good news, I got out of the house and I’m not in horrible pain. In fact I feel pretty god physically right now. Now the Bad News, I lost my wallet with my ID and ATM card. And my bus pass and $10 but I managed to get home without the bus pass and the $10 can be replaced. I was fortunate that on my way back I was never asked to present my bus pass and the same guy that sold me my pass remembered me on the return trip to the house from the transit station.
On other good news I got the presta adapters and the tire is pumped up now, I’ll get the other tire tomorrow then go out and collect high-point check-ins. I was fortunate to have a large handful of loose change I grabbed off my desk before I left the house to pay for the adapters. I’m also fortunate that there will be a Starbucks to wait around in near the big point check-ins so I can keep warm when the temperature drops tomorrow.
And I need to go do Other Things now so time to put this post to bed.
Billed @€0.02, Opus the Unkillable