Passenger Side Rear Wheel Well Rust – Part 1 (Post #631) 11/14/2023

rats

Now that I have the Range Rover flopped in the shoppe I can start on the rust abatement. But first, I thought I should get some oil and some other fluids and do some fluid refreshing. That was a great idea if I had done that BEFORE I started the Big White Bus. But the fact I was doing it AFTER I ran the engine, -2 points.

I loaded up one 5 gallon barrel of oil and headed to my favorite O’Reilly’s. When I got out of the truck my folly was apparent. I had successfully done an Exxon Valdez [Wikipedia] imitation. The metal barrel had rusted through the bottom and dropped 5 gallons of used oil all over the back of my F-150 and on to their Prince William Sound parking lot. I ran in and bought two bags of kitty litter/oil soaker stuff and with the help of one of the guys we spread all that all over their parking lot. I haven’t been that embarrassed in a long time.

I finished up the clean up of the back of my F-150 when I got home and started getting the rear passenger wheel off to start the investigation. The video shows I had a mostly optimistic view when I started scraping the rust. In comparison…the passenger side is no where near as bad as the drivers side wheel well. The rear window is another issue entirely but let me attack these one at a time.

I’ve got two holes SO FAR. I still have to get the wire wheel out and take the rubber back to metal where there are brown spots. The worst looking SO FAR is the bottom of the C Pillar is rusted out. The reason for the rust there is the sunroof drain hose exits there and the crappy plastic grommet did not keep water out. And it is entirely likely that there was nothing inside the C Pillar that would pass for paint. So that was an obvious place for rust.

I’m going to replace the sunroof drain tubing and possibly fit a “Hose Barb Thru-Bulk Head Hex Union 90 Degree L Right Angle Elbow Barbed Brass Fitting with Flat Washer Gasket Water/Fuel/Air” fitting. Something like this….

I’ll add a rubber washer to assist in keeping the water out. I’ve got to measure the tubing and get the right one ordered. They can be found on Amazon.com. Not sure if they are using ID (inside diameter) or OD (outside diameter) to determine if I get 3/8″ or 1/2″.

This may be complete folly but what the hell right? If it works, I’m a genius. If it doesn’t work, I’m still a genius, just a terribly misguided one. Half of me says extend the drain line to behind the mudflap. It would not be that hard to add a little more distance to the hose and NOT put it back in the same poorly designed place. I mean seriously, lots of water and ice and mud and road salt and roadkill chunks (mostly opossums and armadillos and skunks) and all kinds of crap fly off the tires at extreme tangential velocity [Study.com]. The fact that plastic gromet is even able to not be dislodge is a miracle. So…let’s try to make it better!

The headline came out also so I could get the sunroof drain. It had to come out anyway, because it needed to be replaced…again. This will be the third and final. If this is needed again while I own this rig, it will be painted and forgotten.

More next week. Like and subscribe my Youtube channel. Send me a comment too…I love to converse with you.

Thanks for reading and Happy Rovering.

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Starting and Moving the Big White Bus (Post #630) November 6, 2023

holding a spark plug

This weekend I had to get the Big White Bus running so I could turn her around in the shoppe bay. This required me to reinstall the spark plugs and fashion some kind of a temporary seat.

The plugs went in just fine. I applied a new coat of copper anti-seize. It’s time to buy some more as the tube I have is getting a bit dry. But it was sufficiently lube-y to pass for grease.

I got all the plugs in and the wires on without an issue. I got the coil hooked back up. I then stared at the engine bay to confirm everything was ready to go.

Next I needed a seat. I had a lovely 12 inch wide, 16 inch long pine board that covered the electronics and made a lovely “field expedient” seat. And I was ready to start her up…..

….then the GoPro decided to stop recording. Right when I needed it to be recording…it wasn’t. Heavy sigh.

So everyone misses out on the magic moment. Typical.

I turned the key and heard the fuel pump do it’s initial pump. I turned the key and she fired up as expected. Victory! Well, a battle was won, let’s just leave it at that.

I moved all the flotsam and jetsam from around the Range Rover and moved the F-150. I jumped in and drove her up the drive way, made a flawless, 4 point turn :/ and brought back down to the shoppe. The windshield was so dirty I had to clean in order to see how to line her up in the bay.

My daughter RovErica left me a sweet message on the windshield the last time she was home visiting. I left the side with the message undisturbed.

Now the BWB is flipped around. I can now begin to abate the rust on that side. HOPEFULLY these repairs will not be as extensive as the driver’s side. The driver’s side has been the side with the most trauma from being rear-ended by inattentive drivers. My welder and the power for that welder are on that side of the shoppe so turning her around was required.

That’s all I’ve got for this week. Like and subscribe the YouTube video. Comment if you like too…I love to hear from my readers. I also have a Patreon that sadly has NO current membership. Every little bit helps and if you feel my content is worthy of a couple of bucks a month…I promise not to spend it on rum.

Thanks for reading and Happy Rovering.

https://youtu.be/KM3RCtc7gm8

A Visit to the Air Defense Training Facility (Post #629) October 29, 2023

Half track

I was invited by my friend Correy Twilley to come to Fort Sill and participate in a WW2 living history event. The plan was to take the M3 Half Track and a Jeep with a Pack 75 howitzer out to the field and and have students and family come by and learn some history. Unfortunately the weather for Saturday would be pretty nasty. For dedicated living historians that’s not a big deal but the purpose was to have visitors. Not likely to have many visitors when the north wind blows in the 20mph range, rain falling, and temps in the middle 30’s Fahrenheit (1 to 5 Celsius).

World War 2 is not one of my current periods. I would have had to borrow my entire kit. But Correy said not a problem, so I said, “let’s do it”. When he cancelled I told him I still had the day off and would like to come down and visit the training facility.

If you are following the news, they are deploying some anti-aircraft units from Fort Sill to the Middle East. So I was at first concerned I would be in the way. Turned out not to be a problem as most of the troops were already getting their trashed gather up for deployment. Correy taught a class that morning and had a meeting but the afternoon was available for us to tour the displays.

Friday was pleasant with sunny skies so I toured the gun park. There were several examples of weapons I trained on in the park.

I trained on the M101A4 at artillery school. Fort Sill is home to the Artillery School now, but when I served there were two schools, Camp Pendleton and Camp Lejeune. They sent me to Las Pulgas, Camp Pendleton.

After school I was assigned to 5th Battalion, 14th Marines, Oscar Battery. We were using the M110A2 howitzer. This beast was a very accurate system and nuclear capable.

In the infinite wisdom of the Corps they sent our M110s to California changed our unit designation to 2nd Battalion, 14th Marines, Fox Battery. These towed behemoths required modern trucks (M939) to pull them. I was not a fan.

When Correy was finished with his classes he gave me a tour of the training facility. As you will see in the video, they have an amazing collection. Several of the systems are 1 of a kind or there are less than 3 of these known to exist. Several of the trucks and Jeeps are near fully functional and could be taken out if a little work was done on them. Several of the systems are demonstrated for students with live fire exercises.

As promised, Correy said we would take the M16 Half-track out for a spin. It is an M3 based Multiple Gun Motor Carriage equipped with the Maxson M45 Quadmount (specifically the M45D) with four M2HB machine guns. Our first stop was to drive it to the gas station and put in a couple of gallons. The looks on people’s faces when you roll up to the station is pretty fun. After that we took it over to Medicine Man Bluff and then around the old post and finally back to the museum.

I’m looking forward to the next opportunity to go down to the base and to go out in the field with my friends. The weather has turned cold. Seems like we skipped Fall all together this year and went from 90’s to 30’s Fahrenheit in two days.

Thanks for your patience while we went to St. Croix for a week. We needed the break and took a lazy week to recover from work and life. I did manage to see 5 Land Rovers on the island. You can see them on my Instagram account.

I’m working on the backup fuel pump and plan to get the BWB started and turned around in the shop. That will allow me to tackle the rust on the passenger (starboard) side. I’ll have another video up next week.

Like and or subscribe to the Youtube channel, every little bit helps. As always, I’m happy to see comments and will comment back as soon as I see them.

Thanks for visiting and Happy Rovering.

Reviewing the Painting of the Interior Trim (Post #628) October 16, 2023

I painted the interior trim last year. I didn’t publish it…not sure why. Anyway, I cover some of the details of painting the interior trim while looking like Kip from Kip’s Big Boy fame. We had a Kip’s in OKC 40+ years ago…I remember eating there once.

Anyway…I guess I hadn’t looked in the mirror that day and my hair is doing it’s own thing. And apparently I can’t dress myself either. I’m slowly moving toward “crazy old man who don’t give a damn” mode.

In this installment I talk about my work on the interior and what might be next. Like stripping the shellac off the wood trim and re-staining it a darker color to match the dark chocolate interior.

I added two USB charging ports that show the voltage from the battery. I don’t smoke in the Big White Bus so I really didn’t need the cigarette lighters. These are way more functional for all the USB powered “everythings” that we all need to carry. I’m fooling myself that I only need four of these. When I wire up the rest of the battery system for the back I’ll have quite a few more that will be pulling from the auxiliary battery I’m planning to have onboard.

It’s a short video shot back in November of 2022.

Thanks for reading and Happy Rovering.

Replacing the Fuel Pump (Post #626) October 2, 2023

Fuel Pump Swap

In my previous post I talked about the fuel pump and it’s lack of suckage of fuel to make the Big White Bus go down the road. Or more importantly in the short term, get out of the shoppe so I can proceed with the rust repairs.

I ordered the fuel pump from Atlantic British. As I’ve said earlier. If you order from them the part will not officially ship until the day after the first business day in which they receive the order. So if you order on Saturday, they will see the order on Monday, and it will be picked up on Tuesday. Then it will be in transit. For us here in the central southern plains that means a minimum of 6 days to arrive. I think I got this one in 7 days. I’ve come to accept this as the way it’s gonna be. Since the Range Rover is not my daily driver this does not upset me anymore. It just takes extra planning when you need something.

Removing the derelict pump is pretty easy. Turn the ring first. This may take some tapping with a screwdriver and a hammer. Take it easy and take your time. Don’t damage the ring.

The second step if it wasn’t your first step is take the fuel lines off. You will need a pair of 15mm wrenches. Once the lines are out of the way you can rock the fuel pump back and forth while pulling up. It will eventually come up.

The “bowl” will have fuel in it commiserate with how full the tank is with petrol. Pour this out while the fuel pump is still over the tank opening. Be prepared to clean up some petrol if it spills.

Reassembly is a reverse of the process. The most difficult of the tasks is getting the rings of the seal past the tank opening. You can gently coax it past the lip with a flathead screwdriver and steady pressure pushing down on the pump.

Is there a way to use a lubricant…maybe, I didn’t research that. I’ve never used lube for the install, so its not necessary for success.

Take it easy with the float and its electronic bits. Don’t bang it around.

That’s about it for the swap. I need to test the pump and get the the BWB running again. I’ll give it some test cranks to get fuel back up to the fuel rail then reinstall the plugs and fire her up. If I’ve sorted everything we should have a running Range Rover.

Thanks for ready and Happy Rovering.

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The Big White Bus Will Not Start (Post #625) September 25, 2023

spark plugs

In this post I am sort of after the fact prepping the motor for it’s first start in several years (at least 3 years). I was given some advise that I should lubricate the cylinders prior to starting for the first time. The reason is obvious. The cylinders are dry.

I’ve already tried to crank the engine. That was evident in the last video. So perhaps doing this NOW is a bit superfluous. Meaning I’ve probably already damaged something. But maybe not, I’ll know when I get the engine started.

I’ve pulled plugs and I’ve squirted some WD-40 inside each cylinder. How much you say? That’s a great question. I was told at least a couple of seconds of spray. The WD-40 fluid is going to adhere to the cylinder walls and if the rings were stuck, would have acted on them hopefully freeing them. They make a special “foggy spray” for this application but I was told just to use WD-40. I highly recommend you do your own research on this. I’m damaging my own stuff. I don’t want you to damage your stuff if I’m wrong.

The fuel pump is on the way and might arrive today 9/25. That would make it 8 days since I ordered it. They don’t work on Saturday or Sunday so Monday was the first time they started to “fullfill” the order. I am also in the farthest away region from their shipping hub. So a minimum of 5 days of transit. Looking at their location, I could have driven up there, picked up the part in person, and arrived back at base camp before the shipped part arrived.

Next step is to get a fuel pump installed and the Big White Bus started. Drive it to the top of the driveway. Hose off the parts so I can coat them with rust conversion paint. I will then turn her around and have the starboard side on the same side of the shoppe as the welder. I have some rust under the starboard rear wheel well the might need some patching. I also have the repairs to the existing rust spots identified in other videos. B pillar, D pillar.

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Thanks for reading and Happy Rovering.