Monday, January 14, 2019

My Very Own 3D Printer - WooHoo!

My dear wife got me a 3D printer for Christmas. She let me pick out what I wanted, and I went with a Creality CR-10S Pro. Here's my first try at making something, some soft jaws for my Columbian 603 vise:

Thursday, January 10, 2019

1994 E350 Club Van PCU Fix

Our church van's engine recently started missing occasionally, so I delved into the problem to see what I could find out. It's a 1994 van with the 5.8L (351 cu-in) engine, and has only 95,000 miles on it. First thing I noticed was that the Check Engine light wasn't on, which means the van didn't know there was a problem. Hmm. So on to the internet. One thing I noticed when researching was that it was a fairly common problem. People would replace a myriad of parts, only to have the issue persist. Among the parts people would replace would be spark plugs and wires, cap, rotor, coil, distributor, Ignition Control Module, fuel pump, fuel filter, along with vacuum leak checks, fuel injector cleaning, and so on. Wow. I wasn't about to go down all those rabbit holes. Well OK, so I did replace the cap and rotor, but they were well pitted and corroded anyway, so it was a good idea. Anyway, where to start? Not much room under that hood, is there.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Angle Grinder Flap Disc Modification

I've got an old 4-1/2 inch angle grinder from Harbor Freight that just keeps on chugging away. It has a 5/8-inch arbor and most discs these days seem to be made for a 7/8-inch arbor. Fortunately it should be an easy fix to get discs with a larger hole to work with my grinder. I figure I'll just put a 7/8" diameter shoulder on the round nut to hold the larger-holed discs, and just flip the nut over to use smaller-holed discs.

Friday, January 4, 2019

Sheldon 11-Inch Lathe Reversing Tumbler Repair - Again - Arg!

Sigh. Sometimes old machinery is a bit of a bother. Take for instance my Sheldon 11-inch metal lathe from 1941. I got it a year ago and the lead screw reversing tumbler casting was broken. It had been repaired previously any number of times but was broken again by the time I bought it. I fixed it shortly after I got it but noticed when the left quick-change gear selector was in position B, the gearbox would lock up tight. I looked into the issue a few weeks ago and found what the problem was. A pin inside the gearbox was too long, which would contact a gear when the pin came rotating around. I didn't want to pull the gearbox off so I tried to reach in with a cold chisel and knock off the end of the pin. I was somewhat successful, or so I thought. I rotated things by hand and the problem seemed to disappear. I put the lathe in gear, turned it on, and it seemed to run fine too. Shut it off, turn it on, shut it off, turn it on, shut it off. Cool, it's working. Turn it on again and whang! The braze broke. Again. Sigh.

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

'Cuda Sun Visor Repair

The preferred fix for a sun visor that has lost its stitching is generally not to drill holes in the thing and use rivets. Someone previously decided to do just that though. And it didn't hold up all that well to boot.

Friday, November 30, 2018

Dash Circuit Board Pin Repair - Barracuda

A few nights ago I was driving my 1966 Barracuda and decided it was time to fix the wiper motor issue, and it was also then that I happened to notice a couple dash lights weren't working. Then my high-beam indicator light went out. I tapped on the instrument cluster and the dash and high beam indicator lights all came back on. So since I had the dash out of the car to work on the wiper motor, I also did some detective work to fix the dash lights. Here's what I found:

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Sluggish Windshield Wiper Motor Repair - Barracuda

Living in Washington State comes with certain things deemed necessities that may be considered optional in some states. Windshield wipers come to mind. Yes, I know wipers are mandatory equipment in all states but if you lived in SoCal for instance, you could probably get by most of the year without needing them. Not here. We may need 'em any month of the year.

So here I am, driving the Plymouth Barracuda home the day I bought it from my brother earlier this year and it starts raining lightly. I try the wipers and they swipe up, then stop. Hmmm. My brother was right, the wipers do need some attention. So a couple days ago I pulled the dash out of the car and removed the wiper motor to see what's up.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Farewell To Another 40-some Sewing Machines

Today was a big day. Forty-plus sewing machines left the building. The new owners had to make two trips to get them all hauled off in their minivan.

Monday, November 12, 2018

AMMCO (Not AAMCO) Metal Shaper - Reunited

When my mother-in-law decided to clean up her basement 30 years ago, she had a few metal working machines there that her late husband had acquired during his all-too-short years on this earth. Among them was this AMMCO (two "M"s) 7" shaper, circa early 1940's. (For those that may not know, AAMCO (two "A"s) is a transmission rebuilding company but I've seen people refer to AMMCO shapers as AAMCO.)

Friday, November 9, 2018

Vises........ Vices? No, definitely Vises.

One of the definitions of "vice" (with a "c") in the Oxford English Dictionary, and probably the one that most folks associate with a hoard of items, is this: "a bad habit." In a lighthearted vein, a lot of guys (and gals) have 'vices' in which they collect things. I am one of those guys. Take my sewing machines. Please. (ha ha) Seriously though, I have way too many sewing machines. A lot of people would say I have a bad habit of buying old, decrepit sewing machines. It's one of my vices. I am trying to thin the herd though, and have made progress, and most importantly I haven't purchases a sewing machine in a very long time. Another possible vice is collecting various types of tools, say, vises (with an "s"). Prior to two years ago, I had but one vise, fairly inexpensive and similar to the photo below, that I bought 20+ years ago. Rugged, Chinese import no doubt, and heavy enough to take a beating.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Ten Sewing Machines Take A Trip South

For a second time, I got rid of a passel of sewing machines. Maybe ten isn't so much a passel as a small group, considering the passel of 42 I got rid of previously, and considering I have a passel of machines remaining.

The ad showed a number of machines waiting patiently to be purchased by some as-yet unknown sewing machine aficionado. I'd priced each machine separately but then put a better price if someone wanted to take them all. Well, the nice person that showed up from Olympia didn't want many of the ones I'd pulled out but I did tell this person that I had more I wanted to get rid of. We rummaged through my stash and came up with ten nice machines.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Inland Shifter Rebuild - Barracuda

Those familiar with mid-Sixties Mopars will know that in 1966 Chrysler made a giant step backwards with their 4-speed cars. Prior to 1966 Ma Mopar had been using Hurst shifters on their A-833 4-speed cars. In 1966 though, they changed to a shifter made by Inland. The one nice feature of the Inland shifter was that it had a reverse lockout "T" handle, which is pretty cool.

The shifter in my car was woefully out of adjustment and a bit sloppy, but the main issue was that when pulling the shifter to the left to engage 1st or 2nd gear, the shifter would partially enter the reverse gate and lock out 1st/2nd gear engagement until the shifter handle was moved to the right slightly. This process got old quickly so I removed the shifter from the car and disassembled it to see what the issue was.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Chrysler 8-3/4" Differential Adjustment - Barracuda

My Barracuda had a strange rubbing noise coming from the differential when I drove it home the day I bought the car. I wondered if one of the tires was low and causing the Sure Grip to make noise. Nope, wasn't it. I then checked the axles for end play. That wasn't it either. I checked the axles for excessive run-out on the lathe (the photo below shows measuring in the middle of the axle but I checked bearing and spline ends too). Still not the problem.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Small Door Panel Repair - Barracuda

An unwanted guest made its way into my Barracuda prior to me purchasing the car. The guest was brash enough to chew a small hole into one of the door panels.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Door panel and seat back color change - Barracuda

The interior of my "new" Barracuda is quite green. The original color was a light green/gold color that Plymouth called Citron Gold. Somewhere along the way the previous owner put in new seat covers and floor carpet. The seat panels are a light green color velour but the seat backs, console, door panels, armrests, and carpet were finished in a very dark shiny green. Here's a shot of the green door panel. I'd painted the armrest earlier just to test to see how it looked.