"I thought of to many quotes for this spot in the last week, but I can't remember any of them."
Day's 28, 29, & 30
Yes I know, I am a week behind on updates. I have a good reason I swear! I haven't worked on the truck in a week because I was shipped up to Nor Cal for Top Truck Challenge with Four Wheeler Magazine. It's all good though, I'm back and progress is once again being made on the truck.
For those of you that bet that I would not get the truck finished in time to take up the coast, first shame on you for betting against me, but you were correct. We came close, but not close enough to fell comfortable pulling an all-nighter to finish on Sunday night. So I have set another goal, this coming Sunday. This time it should be attainable, I swear.
So, now for some updates. When we last left off on Day 27 I had finished the driver side upper shock mount and started on the passenger. I am glad to report that the passenger side mount is complete and went together without a hitch on Day 28. When Day 29 came around it was time to work on the fuel system. We started out by building the tray that the cell will be sitting in out of angle iron. Once this was completed and welded to the chassis the metal cell can was placed in its final resting place. The next step was to get the fuel cell its self ready to go in. This involved removing all of the foam and drilling holes to mount the new fuel level sending unit and a new -6 AN bulkhead fitting for the fuel return line from the regulator. Once this was complete the cell was cleaned out to get all of the plastic shavings out and the foam was put back inside. Next was to place the cell bladder in its can and design and build the straps that will hold it in. This structure sits on top of the cell and bolts to the chassis with bolts through tabs welded to tubes. Simple and effective.
With the fuel cell in place it was time to turn attention to plumbing it. The first step was welding on the fuel filler cap mount. This was placed on top of the driver side shock mount for easy access at the pump. Next was to determine the placement of the new filter, pump, and regulator. Because of the size of the various components we decided to run them on the bottom side of the tubes that the spare tires will be sitting on in the future. Again, because of limited space only the filter (blue) and pump (black) are on the tubes, the regulator is on top of the frame underneath the fuel cell. Stay tuned for photos of how these were permanently mounted (I know zip ties can be permanent, just not for this purpose).
Once the fuel was lined up we moved onto bump stops and brakes. With the help of friends (Brian and Nick, if you care) we set to work on this. Brian took his vast fabrication knowledge and set to work on mounting the hydraulic bumpstop cans to the chassis while Nick and I worked on plumbing the brake system. The brake system is plumbed completely with Stainless Steel hard and soft lines and is held to the axle housing with Stainless Steel clamps (overkill I know, but whatever). Once we were finished with the brakes and bumpstop cans it was time to mount the shocks.
Before we could mount the shocks the limit strap clevis tabs needed to be welded to the frame. So while Brian made a 7-11 run Nick and I mounted the limit straps. I had already figured out that with a 16" Bypass shock I would be able to get around 30" of travel. So we limited the trucks travel to 28". I feel that the 28" in the rear will work well with my 14" in the front, anymore and it would actually slow me down because I wouldn't have the power to push it and it wouldn't match well with the front. The limit straps I used are Beard Quad Wrapped straps and I am using 4 of them on the rear of the truck to stop this massive amount of weight and force. That and four straps look cooler!
With the straps mounted and Brian back we set to installing the massive 16" travel coilovers. To do this we needed to lift the truck as high as it could go since the shocks were both charged and sprung so there was no way we could compress them by hand. With the truck lifted high enough to get the shocks in we measured a massive 37" of wheel travel! With a clean pinion angle and minimal driveshaft plunge! Very impressive. Useless to me, but impressive none the less.
With the shocks on, tires on, and truck holding its own weight we all let out a sigh of relief. The truck took a bit of adjustment to the spring preload to get the ride height down, and it still needs to break in a little to get it just right. We finished the night off by bleeding the brakes and filling the rear axle with 3 quarts of Amsoil Severe Gear 75-110 premium gear oil.
After a couple hours of driveway and garage clean up the truck was sitting, on its own four wheels, ready to run... sorta. Which is where we pick up now. Tomorrows update will include both days 31 and 32 and we will be all caught up, and hopefully running.