I had to go outside today, and it was a mite chilly, 49°F chilly for a high temperature to be precise, with a “feels like” of 43 when I was out in it. How chilly is that? I wore long pants to cover my knees for the first time since winter, but I forgot to grab a belt out of the closet and spent most of the return trip trying to keep my pants from falling off. That was about a mile walking with one hand holding up my pants.
The reason for the trip was I needed to get bus fare for a meeting tomorrow, and a lottery ticket. Unfortunately instead of the annuitized $18.25 million payout the ticket was for the cash value option payout of $12.5 million. So if this blog goes silent after Monday you’ll know I am taking time to manage my finances prior to accepting the jackpot. The meeting is the artist of a web comic I read, Not A Villain. I try very hard to support the creators of the entertainment I consume, even if it’s only clicking the ads on their sites.
On other subjects this blog has become known for, I went old-school to scale up that picture of the engine and transaxle and this time I found the assembly to be 36.1″ end-to-end as it sits sideways in the car, and about 2″ of the transaxle will stick out the driver’s side of the body if the CG is really on the line between the silver and grey on the forward engine mount. The accessory drive will be just inside the confines of the bucket body, and just clear the bottom frame rail.
And I still have stuff I need to do before I go to bed, so this post has to end now.
And yesterday was
one two of those times. First stupid thing was extending my walk after ordering the hone I needed to install the kingpins and spindles on the axle. The second stupid thing was refusing the ride home after I started hobbling instead of walking. I can barely walk now because of the pain in the balls of my feet. I walked for 4.4 miles last night which is about 2 miles more than normal. Since the end of May I have walked more than 33 miles which averages out to 2 miles a day, and there were days I couldn’t walk because of pop-up showers in the evenings. But there were 2 extra-point check-ins on my mobile game that gave me an extra 70 points for checking in. That’s the equivalent of an extra 14 check-ins over and above the 25 I get per day, so you can see why I would want to get those check-ins. If I grab a bunch of those I will be back in the black for the weekly $1 gift card. Now the smart thing to do would be to catch the bus to the Wendy’s and order fries and drink soda all day while I walk back and forth between the two extra point check-ins and collect 245 points in 8 hours. That’s almost 10 cents! 😀 and right at 2 miles, and I could take the bus home or within 0.4 miles of home.
I have made zero progress on the TGS2 outside of buying the hone, that will be here tomorrow afternoon. Seriously, I can’t even think right now because of the pain. That kinda worries me, because I’m the guy who wrecked his knees and barely felt it, pulled a couple of my own teeth without painkillers, only took a painkiller because they made me on my last operation, and only needed one on the previous operation. Having something hurt this bad must mean I destroyed something. In fact I think I will take a little lie down because my feet hurt so bad.
I was out in the heat again today paying bills and I really cut it close this time. I had to pay the phone bill after getting to the office just after they closed yesterday, so I was out during the day in the sun and the heat. Well I didn’t get any water or hydrate before I left and I started getting nauseous walking around. I didn’t check what the temperature was, but it was over 90 and it felt muggy when I opened the door.
I think I might have saved enough money from various gigs to get that brake hone and install those spindles this week. I have 2 trips to the lab rat keeper and another trip to take movies of my heart beating. This time I’m getting driven to the echocardiogram so I don’t have to spend more than 7 hours on the roads to get a 20 minute procedure done. I have to wear that infernal Automatic Blood Pressure Monitor and carry a jug of my urine around again, but maybe by the end of the week I’ll have a mockup installation of the spindles on the axle.
And I was just taking a “think break” to let my mind put more words together and putting the kingpins in the axle bosses where they are supposed to go, and as the instructions warned they don’t fit. First installation in a new tubular axle and both bosses are out of round by a few thousandths, just enough to keep the pins from dropping in unhindered. Enough that I had to get a hammer and drift to get them back out. And the instructions also say that the only way to fix this is with the brake hone… Before anyone says anything, yes I had the grub screws all the way out before trying to install the pins.
I’m trying a different strategy on sleeping, going to bed early before I’m tired and just letting the brain do its thing until I fall asleep. I was up by 0800 today waking up all on my own. It really looks like the longer I wait to hit the bed the longer it takes to turn off my brain. I was asleep in under an hour last night and the night before and woke up before my alarm yesterday and this morning. It’s weird being up that early. My usual M.O. is to wait until I feel sleepy, then get in bed, and have the brain go crazy trying to solve all the problems I didn’t get to during the day. Then several hours later I finally fall asleep only to get awakened from REM sleep by my alarm. If I turn the alarm off and get back to sleep I drop immediately back into REM and either continue the dream I woke up from or move into another one. One recurring theme I have been having lately in my dreams is mountain freeways replaced by multilane fiberglass slides that go for miles. Everyone gets out of their cars and slides down the mountain to meet their car at the bottom of the slide. This says something, but I’m not sure what it is yet. It is loads of fun sliding down the mountain, especially at night. But anyway that doesn’t happen when I go to bed before I get sleepy.
And I was writing a paragraph about sleeping and guess what happened? Yep, faceplanted right into the keyboard. Can’t sleep when I want to but when I’m doing something and need to stay awake? ZONK!
And now I really need to leave and fill out my bag limit of check-ins on my mobile game so I can get what I can out of it before it goes belly up.
Physical health first. Sometime during my last walk I rubbed a hole in my left foot. Don’t ask me how, I didn’t notice until I was getting ready for bed. Kinda like I didn’t notice all those torn ligaments in my knee. But now I notice, you betcha I notice. It hurts like a sonuvagun. As a certain “reality star” would say, bigly. Now if I could just remember what I did besides walk… Nothing comes to mind.
Mental health, Mrs. the Poet will be leaving to visit her mother and the rest of her NY relatives on the 29th. She won’t be back until the end of August. She’s worried about the house, and what the cats would do to it. And what I won’t do to it, like mop the floor twice a day. I’m worried about not having a human to exchange physical affection with. Seriously that kinda stuff makes me a bit off, or rather not having that kinda stuff. I’m sure somebody will come visit me or invite me to dinner or some such.
Moving on to car-building stuff, I decided to confront my fears and install the kingpins in my spindles by myself using a brake cylinder hone . Of the three choices for fitting the bushings the brake hone was the least tool-intensive and only barely the most labor-intensive over the reamer. The one that was the most out-of-pocket was taking the spindles to a machine shop to have them Sunnen honed. The setup charges alone for that one would buy 3 new brake hones. And after I install the spindles to the axle I can measure to find the tie rod I need instead of guessing at it.
And I promise to take lots of pictures while I hone out the bushings and fit the kingpins to the spindles, because it will probably be funny as heck (not Hades because he’s really a dour dude). There may even be some blood involved, applied to the parts in some manner. The Big Thing will be Parts Assembled (like Avengers Assemble only without superheroes and the parts only move when I move them, so almost completely unlike Avengers Assemble).
Now I desperately want to walk to the parts store and get that brake hone and some grease fittings for the spindles, but my foot still has a hole in it so I can’t.
Opus the Unkillable
This Sunday I took a fall when I pushed up from my chair and before I could get my feet under me the chair went rolling backwards, dropping me on my tailbone. Then yesterday I did 3 miles even to max out my check-ins in as little time possible, only it took longer because of poor route planning. My butt didn’t hurt while walking, but it made up for it when I had to wait for the check-ins to become active again. I will know better for tonight.
I did a bit more Googling and I now know how much that engine and transmission weigh as a group. The Pentastar V6 engine weighs 326, the 62te transmission 220, right on my previous estimate based on the 41te the 6 speed is derived from, so the total is 546, one pound heavier than the SBC 350 without a transmission. Or rear axle, driveshaft or a whole raft of other things that are part and parcel of the 62te in the picture, but not the halfshafts or suspension that are also in that picture. The traditional 350/350 engine/trans combination for a bucket comes in at a combined 670 pounds, throw in the cast iron 9″ Ford center section and differential and you have about 740 for the (almost) equivalent of the picture. Thing is that picture is of the drivetrain of a full sized commercial van with a GVW of 8550 pounds, not some wimpy minivan. The drivetrain in that picture would have no problem with a 1500 pound Mid-Bucket. It is a pity then that I’ll never get to install it in one. The Mid-Bucket weighs about half the cargo rating of the van the powertrain in the picture comes from! I could literally drive the Mid-Bucket inside the box and drive the van away without overloading it. I mean how cool is that? And using that transmission on a vehicle with a GVW of 8550 pounds means they finally fixed the reliability problems of the 41te.
Enough car talk, I need to get ready for my walk.
Billed @€0.02, Opus the fat but Unkillable
I was on a long walk to get some stuff at the hardware, and well, my mind also wandered. Specifically it wandered around the Sprint-T. What I was thinking about was what it could be like with the Pentastar 3.6l V6 DOHC aluminum block and heads engine that weighs a factory-claimed 326 pounds (as compared to the 545 claimed for the SBC and the 413 for the 3.8 pushrod engine out of the minivan) and delivers 305 HP in stock form. As a comparison the “performance” SBC in the first-gen Camaro was rated at 290 HP. In the Sprint T with the SBC and a TH 350 transmission I was looking at just over 1700 pounds empty, with the Pentastar V6 and the 42RE transmission coming in at 1450 pounds but that 42RE transmission would be dicey for racing use. The later models used 6 and 8 speed slush boxen that would survive racing but also weigh considerably more, the 8-speed being strong enough for the legendary Hemi. The transverse version of the 3.6 would bolt to the 41TE transaxle in the mid-Bucket and take 87 pounds off the weight and rear axle, while adding more than 200 HP over the engine as it sits in the minivan. Do I want one? Not if I had to buy it from the dealer with a car around it. Would I take a similar deal as I got on the 3.8l pushrod engine, remove a derelict vehicle to remove the stuff I needed to make a car for free? Hell I would even pay for a car that got wrecked in the back as long as it wasn’t more than $1K to get the 305 HP version of the engine and then swap the FEAD (Front End Accessory Drive) for the transverse installation. I mean 200 HP more and 87 pounds less would I take that? Hell Yes I Would Take That!
So the reason for the walk was to get the 7/32” drill bit and the small tube of GOOP for the bike and Mini Sprint-T respectively. I logged 3.93 miles and 25 checkins on Map My Walk and M Plus Places respectively and burned a lot of calories in the process. The weather was perfect, just warm enough and just breezy enough with a high overcast so that it was bright but not blinding.
And I have to get the rest of the stuff I do offline done so I can go to bed, so I’m putting this post to bed first, then me.
Billed @€0.02, Opus the Unkillable
Read that headline in sing-song voice like you were taunting someone because that’s how I typed it. Yesterday was pretty painful but this morning I wasn’t feeling too bad so after dinner tonight I’m going to take a short (just >2 mile) walk. I can get 19 out of the 25 possible check-ins on my phone game, just not any bonus point check-ins, for a maximum of 95 points and a good walk. This particular walk seems to be my best compromise between exercise and damage to my body. I’m still waiting on that new pump to arrive so I can pump up the other tire and get some real exercise on my bike.
In other news there ain’t no other news I can report in this blog, so I covered it in my Twitter account. Twitter is not a good medium for me. I mean I can do it, no problem but I have a tendency to reduce my written communications to sound bites as it is and the 140 character limit per tweet makes this even worse. I mean, have you ever read “Famous Novels Redone As Single Tweets”? That’s what my tweets look like if I’m not careful about stuffing too much information into a single tweet.
I’m still unhappy with Mrs. the Poet over the hot rod thing, but I don’t see any way to compromise with her “no!” stance. My opinion is if I have to give up something I have dreamed about for half a century then there should be something Mrs. the Poet gives up in exchange, but she doesn’t have any such long-held desires. I mean the most I could do would be to tell her she can’t clean up the garage any more since I won’t be building anything in it now that I can’t build my hot rod. I have design sketches for the T-Bucket that are over 20 years old, she has nothing. Well nothing she hasn’t already got. Her big thing was getting the kids raised and grandkids, which she sorta has now. The only place she’s fallen short of her dreams is we only have the one grandkid, where she was hoping for several. Anything else she has wanted has been discarded like a used tissue. I’m still here, so I guess that’s good.
And my walk beckons so this is the last
PSA, Opus the Unkillable
After I got the message that I was getting a warrantee replacement on the failed tire pump and I could throw the failed pump away I went ahead with the post-mortem on how and why it failed. I poked at the junction between the hose and the gauge where all the air was leaking from and there was a definite discontinuity in the hose at that point. So I carefully cut away the fabric braid over the hose and found the hose barely attached to the gauge with most of the diameter separated and some degradation of the rubber hose in that spot.
You can see a crack that developed at the point of first failure. Something has deteriorated the entire hose as far back as I can peel the braid covering and there are lengthwise cracks all over the hose that don’t show up in pictures I can take with my phone because it doesn’t have macro capability like my old flip phone. And I can’t change the resolution to match what I can post here to save storage space like my old flip phone. Anywho, the hose has a slightly sticky surface and has other signs of physical deterioration like those cracks. Hypothesis: the hose is not of recent manufacture and has succumbed to age. Second hypothesis: the hose has deteriorated rapidly because of environmental contamination. Conclusion: either or both hypothesis are correct as the hose may be old but not old enough to fail unless deteriorated by environmental contamination. Unfortunately there are no markings indicating country of manufacture anywhere on the pump, so I can’t say if pollution from lax regulations in China may have caused my pump to fail.
Anyway, yesterday I went for another 4.3 mile walk to get bonus points on my phone game while I paid for my phone service and I woke up this morning feeling like my feet had been beaten on again, so tomorrow’s walk will only be about 2.2 miles and just get 19 out of the 25 possible captures per day. I still need to get the exercise and also need to get as many points as possible. All this will be far easier on my feet when the replacement pump gets here (and hopefully, works) and I can ride my bike to the places that have the bonus check-ins. They are easy bike rides away, but long walks that hurt my feet.
Billed @€0.02, Opus the Unkillable
I’m still stuck in the house with a bum foot, and still stuck on moving forward with the hot rod. I tried to get up early and get the presta adapter but walking was like sticking nails in my foot. Significantly smaller nails today than yesterday but going from 20 penny to 10 when you prefer none is a difference without a significance. Or to phrase it differently, slightly less pain is still more pain than I would like.
Moving forward on the hot rod requires either having the parts from the donor car which isn’t here yet, or scale drawings of the parts I need to figure out which rear caliper I’m going to end up using. I mean I know which caliper I’m going to be using for my parking brake but I’m still unsure of which end of the car they are going to be mounted on. If I can’t fit them to the Chrysler knuckle I’ll use this bracket kit to mount them to the front spindles, or if I can put them on the back like they are supposed to go I can use any of a number of big brake kits on the front axle.
Well I’m out of things to discuss and out of time to post them anyway.
Billed @€0.02, Opus the Unkillable
I feel accomplished today. I went for a walk and picked up something for Mrs. the Poet, then got some tools (files) from the hardware for working on the mid-bucket and the Mini Sprint-T, got a present for the B-Day party I was invited to on Saturday, and fitted one of the steering arms to the spindle all by 2100. I had to walk 4.2 miles to get all of the stuff done that I had to leave the house to do, and then spend about 2 hours filing tiny amounts of metal off the steering arm until it fit flat against the spindle registers. It’s a snug fit, almost an interference fit, but fit it does. The material is so hard that there were no actual filings, just a dark powder that got my hands dirty but didn’t actually spread anywhere. I used a mill bastard file that was designed for precision work by the captive brand for Lowe’s, Kobalt. It worked very well. Tomorrow I will take some pictures of the arm I didn’t work on and the one I did work on and show the difference in fit on the spindle.
I also used the walk to rack up check-ins on my phone game that pays me money to play. I hit my limit again. I may not be racking up the big points, but I’m still racking up points to get more gift cards. And then next month I start selling plasma to make up for the gigs I lost in 2016. So Yay! me.
PSA, Opus the Unkillable