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  • #46
    I'm not sure, but when I ask the question, "how long should it take", I tend to remind myself that being well equipped, well prepared, and ready to work is most of the battle. You got those three things and the rest just happens.

    I don't. But I get by.

    Click image for larger version  Name:	IMG_6471.JPG Views:	0 Size:	105.2 KB ID:	602067 I know some guys like to weld everything. I don't. I like to complicate things by welding something that bolts in place. That is made more difficult by the simple fact I'm using, rather scrounging, materials that are around and will work. No easy task, but I still accomplishing most projects transforming a pigs ear of raw product into the silk purse of look at what that guy did.

    Click image for larger version  Name:	IMG_6473.JPG Views:	0 Size:	107.1 KB ID:	602068 Sometime I just sits and thinks. Sure, I'm procrastinating, but sometimes I actually think. That thinking is usually how to avoid the work, come up with a better idea, or maybe just to stop and ask, is there a better way?


    Click image for larger version  Name:	IMG_6479.JPG Views:	0 Size:	82.5 KB ID:	602071I'm going to admit that when it comes to cutting materials, I dread bring out the torch. Things are crowded in the garage and mobility is limited for a smooth flowing, swing of the torch. That and being in a hurry to get it done doesn't help. But what doesn't get accounted for in the process can be made up for in the finishing, it's called grinding.

    Click image for larger version  Name:	IMG_6489.JPG Views:	0 Size:	117.7 KB ID:	602069I'm calling it a win. They both look the same, they bolt on, and they look funky.

    Click image for larger version  Name:	IMG_6499.JPG Views:	0 Size:	96.5 KB ID:	602070A little welding, a little grinding, shot of primer and another step closer to completion.
    Last edited by Noel; 09-14-2019, 09:38 AM.

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    • #47
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ID:	602073Creative thinking solves problems. Installing a coil spring, that's a problem. I've found the equation of thinking + welding+ heating = solutions.
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ID:	602074Always start with the easy side.
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ID:	602075Then do the hard side. The hard side is the dark side, far side, the difficult side to reach.
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ID:	602076Then when you look at your undrilled rotors and ask why you weren't born rich instead of handy, you can remind yourself there was a good reason to buy that drill press. Yea, I'm drilling out my rotors just because it's less work to do that then drilling a hole in my head to let the idea run out of it.
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ID:	602077 I didn't want a Ford bolt pattern so I changed that as well to explain the additional holes in the face. These had been wrapped up in a box since 2004 judging by the news print. How long does it take a guy to do something, about 15 years I'd say.

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      • #48
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ID:	602136 I'm not sure if this was a success or a fail in my attempt to modify a bolt pattern and drill vent holes. I didn't flip the patter to make left and right, not that I can say it would have made a difference?
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ID:	602134 Found out I missed a hole, or rather was in such a mindless state drilling holes I didn't push on through twice? I could have moved away from the edge as well but didn't check untill after I'd drilled all the holes so I'm living with it. I did champher the holes.
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ID:	602135 And not cleaning the cuttings I thought this was a location for one? Just didn't catch it soon enough in my mindless state of mind.
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ID:	602137 All said and done, not bad for an old guy with a drill press.
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ID:	602138 Made in Canada and Noel's garage. Call me lucky, but one drill bit drilled all those holes and I didn't sharpen it once. I can't believe it either but it's the truth. Like I said, call me lucky.

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        • #49
          I'm not sure about my mental health. I see a deal, get an impulse and the next thing you know I own a Van. Your probably wondering why and rightly so, just because you can doesn't mean you should after all. But I had the notion it might come in handy? Initial inspection suggested a bit of effort and it would be a solid 3/4 ton. Kid says it would make a good ice cream truck?
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ID:	602203It appears it was an ex city unit that was sold off the fleet line and passed into a life of service that lasted untill what I suspect to be a fuel pressure regulator side lining it out of service. I spent 4 hours pressure wash the crud. Part of that was that there was a lot of crud, the rest was I don't like crud. Doors are open because it got washed.
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ID:	602204 Body has some rocker panel rust, no big deal and still easily fixable. Not that fixing it is if you do it well, but it's not bad in that the inner appears to be fairly sound metal. I washed underneath as well. I'm thinking scuff and a quick interior spray if I keep it? But that's down the road and a large maybe.
          I'm not dumping much into this much past fixing the PO 300 random miss fire and a quick servicing tune up. I'm giving it a chance, or it's becoming a learning experience.
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ID:	602206Which involved an oil change. I pride myself on not making a mess on my drive way. And I don't. This filter however has been over tightened and still rests in place. My simple filter wrench, it bent. My chain vice, it cut the skin and started leaking but the thing didn't budge. I brought out the cordless and plunked in a couple of holes to drain things over night. Tomorrows another day.
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ID:	602205Like I mentioned, I don't like the gunk. I washed my engine down so it got a cleaning as well. It'll also allow me to figure out what else is leaking and if so how bad. Not that I want the work, but I'm weighing heavy on resealing the intake manifold? I'm not sure what the flat rate is for this job, or what's involved, but after I kill the filter with a sharp spike thru it's heart, I'm getting started.
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ID:	602202As I was laying on my back watching the last dribbling's of oil draining from the pan, I caught a glimpse of something in the hole. Never a good sign is it?
          Doesn't that thicken the gravy? Right about now the ominous music plays. Well...I'm weighing my options. Real life, real drama, and really wondering about my mental health. Ok, and where that little piece of metal come from?



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          • #50
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ID:	602254Well I got it off. Drove the spirl spike into the heart of the yellow beast, pulled it out and finished the job with Mr. Craftsman Flat Head and Mr. Hammer. Took some effort, 1/2' of tear to prove it, but it spun off finally.
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ID:	602252Getting into this I new I'd discover a few things. The short cap and rotor was one. Rotor being loose was another lol.
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ID:	602251Poor man's tune up. Looks new to me? Lol. Remember I found a chunk of metal draining oil, I'm not looking to dump heavy money into a deep pit. Clean it up, put it back together, see how it runs. I'm going to pull a plug or two, easy ones anyways, and if they look ok, the rest stay put for now.
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ID:	602253This is the fuel pressure regulator, Not that it looked like that when I took it out, but after I took it apart. Not what I was expecting? I should have put a vacuum pump to it before dissecting the thing, but I didn't. Going to take another round with the grinder to know for sure what the diaphragm looks like if this was the issue.
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ID:	602250Now I say "was" because, well...this vacuum line when I removed it was removed without inspection. But it looked collapsed and I thought I better look it over before I reinstall it to the intake. Well I looked it over. Now I'm no mechanic, but when I noticed this my first thought was, I bet that could cause a random miss fire? Lol. My next thought was, I'm going to JB weld that regulator back together and see if it holds vacuum?

            But the top end, it's back together. I drained the rad down so it needs a top up, hook the battery back up and should be good to go. Took me about 5 hrs. I took a break here and there, I don't work to fast... but it got me thinking? If it was as simple as a cracked vacuum hose, you'd think I'd feel pretty dumb right about now. I don't... I'm actually feeling pretty good all things considered? I took it apart and got it back together. I'm calling it a win.

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            • #51
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ID:	602256I thought to mention, it looked harder to do then it was.
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ID:	602257Oh yea. and removel was easy. That spider injector was a filthy oily dirty son of a I should have worn gloves. But really, easy peezy, no brainer or much for brains required. That's it on the right side.
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ID:	602258These were most of the tools required. Even less if you just replace the hose?

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              • #52
                I wish I could say after replacing the cracked vac line, and the fuel pressure regulator, problem solved things are going good...I wish I could say that, but I can't.
                What I can say is they didn't get worse. Lol. it was sounding smoother?

                There's been a few developments. After this attempt at a fix went side ways I realized I had to ramp up my game. I had to think a bit more, learn a bit more and put in a greater effort to do.

                First thing I did was a fuel pressure test. I know, a little late for that, part of the greater effort to do I mentioned. Truth be told I was relying on a previous PO300 miss firing that was a leaky fuel pressure regulator issue. Well I got that wrong, and the vac. hose that was cracked, it as well was replaced and the miss firing is still present.

                53psi, pumps up, holds steady, no drops when running/ accelerating and holds on shut off. I'm ruling out a fuel issue. That leave me with spark and mechanical by my way of limited thinking?

                Just a quick recap, I'm no mechanic, no history on the van or work that's been done, had existing PO300 as a singular code, and with the recent work I've done led to the discovery, someone else's hands had touched things before mine, and the distributor was replaced with a reman at some point.

                I'd give a right nut for a factory manual.
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ID:	602361I mentioned gluing the darn thing back together. This is the second attempt. First attempt split open when I thought three hours would have been dry enough? It wasn't. This time I left it over night and wrapped it back together. And no, it doesn't leak. I checked it held vacuum.
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ID:	602362I got distracted with getting this wiper off. I still haven't. It appears to be welded on? I did manage to get the panel lifted to clear the crap inside, or most of it. I also lost a nice brass hose nozzle inside in doing so?

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ID:	602364But I made this fancy little tool. It didn't work. Lol. I'm sure looking at it you would think it would now wouldn't you? But it didn't. It was a bit to big to fit in or around the arm. I didn't feel like grinding so I said to heck with getting it off.
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ID:	602363Talk about experience. Cable broke and I didn't want to buy a new one. Heck, I didn't want to find out it had cables but I did. Anyways, I did replace the cable with one from an old mountain bike, managed to solder a bulb on the end and get it back together. Lasted 4 days. I spent the money bought a new one, called it done in under half an hour. previous experience does sometimes work in your favor.

                And my buddy with the car, he finally has it in a shop to be completed to the paint stage. Estimate came in around $28 grand Cdn. Doesn't answer the question how long does it take, but it gives an answer to how much it might cost.

                Getting back to the van, the term throwing money at it comes to mind. I say that because frankly, the question to me is where is it thrown and to what benefit? Presently it doesn't throw any codes, no check engine light, but the miss firing still remains. It has a smooth idle, no noises from it when do so or under light throttle. I have a feeling that a factory manual and updating my diagnostic scan tool cartridge wouldn't hurt if money was thrown in that direction, but I'll go back to doing some basic testing, change plugs, check wire resistance, do a compression test, kill two birds with one stone and find out more of what's going on with the mechanical side of things? I'm also of the mind set to confirm that distributor was properly placed?

                Oh yea, those rotors I drilled out. I got those installed but hit a snag. Turn out I need to find a different caliper mounting bracket, or do a modification to the ones I've got. Part and parcel with car stuff.


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                • #53
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ID:	602389If I went to school for this stuff, I'm sure it would make more sense. As it is, it's not something high on the remebering list so I'm forced to relearn a bit of what it all means before it starts to make sense. Bank 2 Sensor 2, thaat's an interesting burp.
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ID:	602388Now when I noticed this I must admit I was thinking I was going to be doing lower manifold gaskets. Lol, I still might but maybe not. This was just after I wrapped up playing with the scan tool. I was to discover it was the thermostat hose end that was leaking and running down the left side.
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ID:	602387I did however expect to be pulling the distributor in doing those gaskets. Knowing enough to be dangerous, I proceeded with caution.
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ID:	602390It was right about here that I had the moment of clarity that said maybe I don't have to pull the distributor or change those manifold gaskets unless I want to. Which I don't. But I still might. But this moment here is when I thought, the principles of doing this are mostly the same as any SBC distributor...

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ID:	602391So where was the carbon tip post that was supposed to be in the cap center? Lol, you missed it to eh? I didn't lose it. But I just then realized it should be there.
                  I should have asked that question sooner wouldn't you think? I did actually. I thought it strange but chalked it up to uncertainty and not knowing any differently. This is one part, rather two parts, I'll throw some money at tomorrow. I should mention, I did replace the plugs. Laid on my back, all from underneath. I might bring out the pressure washer once again. But it wasn't so bad let me tell you.
                  I hooked up my high freq. to the platinum tips that came out and they all sparked. Not that they were fouled up either. But they were in for a bit judging by the appearance. I'd say they work, gaps not excessive, they were to tight actually with a .060 called for, but they ain't going back in either. I went AC Delco. Purrs good on idle. No codes, no check engine light. We'll see what a cap and rotor does for things.

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                  • #54
                    I feel obligated to update the saga of what is quickly turning out to be a lesson in humility.
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                    First guy at the parts counter today I went home with a new cap and rotor. Looked at the parts, looked at what it would take to throw them on and void the idea of doing the intake manifold gasket. Guess what I said?
                    I said let's get them on and this thing back together.

                    Now...This van was running at 40%. Replacing the fuel pressure regulator and the cracked hose, It jumped to a solid 50%. Doing the plugs, that was a boost to 65%. The new cap and rotor, that has things running in the 80% range. But not 100%.
                    It's showing no code, no check engine, idle is good, light acceleration is fine, higher rpm it's objecting loudly.

                    I pulled some numbers with the scanner that I found interesting. -10 to +35 degrees for spark. While I had previously aligned to TDC expecting I would be pulling the distributer, I'm set to pull it and reconfirm it's placement. I don't think it's advancing enough due to being a tooth out? I'm told a tooth is worth 8 to 12 degrees. With no back history or story, I'd rather rule it out as being a problem then trust it was placed properly by the previous guy playing doctor.
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ID:	602422That flat spot on the housing is a reference, as is the triangle on the right side, and the white spot high lighted as #1 location. Only way to know it to do. A manual wouldn't hurt, You tube has been helpful as well as the internet. It also is more similar to a 4.3 rather then a 5.3 let me tell you.

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                    • #55
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ID:	602440I'm not sure if I should have figured this out sooner or not? This by the way is the new rotor. When this clicked in, the picture came together. Puzzle solved.
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ID:	602441When I pulled the distributor the thrust washer was missing. Thing had been riding up and the timing would go off. This picture shows the shard from the pan on the right side. Makes sense to me.
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ID:	602442Took it apart, cleaned the gear face, found a couple of washers, one flat and one a spring washed to fill the space and hold the shaft down to the cam gear.

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ID:	602443I could have replaced the distr. gear, it showed signs of galling but I figured once tight the worst might be some noise from it. I could live with that. Plunked it in and it fired right up. The Vortec 5.7 lives and breaths again.

                      It took me 7 days. I move a bit slow, wasted a day washing, learning as I went along I think I did pretty good. And really easy to work on. Looking at that gear, I'm thinking in and out in a couple of hours now.

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                      • #56
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ID:	602445I'm sure there's a good purpose for these beside a reason to remind your self you could never change this on the side of the road. Heck, I'm having a hard enough time getting them off now. One down three to go.
                        Not that it, this van, came with a Jack or a spare, it didn't. But mu goal is to see what condition the condition is in. Right now I want them off to check brakes, flush the system.
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ID:	602446I'm sure there is a better method then the one I'm using, but I got one off with it. Lol. I can say with certainty, I'm bringing out the die grinder and making some noise. One down four to go.
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ID:	602447Looks like some brake work and servicing. Pads wearing unevenly and maybe caliper dragging. That's drivers side.
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ID:	602448 The middle of the pad was pretty good for thickness, the squeeler hadn't touched, just uneven pad wear on the ends. I could probably leave it no harm no fould, but liking the peace of mind servicing brings.
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ID:	602449Knowing I can take this one wheel off easily, I've inspected and know what to expect for work and planning accordingly for the doing. Not looking forward to the big old drums on back let me tell you. Having given the front end a quick inspection and a grease job, already sucking out the old out of the master cylinder and given it a cleaning with a re fill, I'm getting this service done before winter hits.
                        I might take them off, plug them up and run them through the glass beader with a shot of red paint. True story, dropping off used oil a week back and in the free used paint lane was 4 spray cans of VHT red sparkle paint. Call me lucky.

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                        • #57
                          Well I managed to get the wheels off. Let me tell you, it wasn't easy nor did it happen with out some serious effort. Took a few minutes a wheel with a carbide bit in a die grinder, but those wheel locking protrusions are gone.
                          Now if I get a flat tire, the wheel will come off.
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                          I'm also going to add a comment regarding doing so. While some will say I could have just loosened the nuts and dropped it down to break it free, or loosened the nuts and drive it back and forth to break it free, I did both and the wheel wasn't budging. I have a sledge and iI did beat on that SOB to no avail. This isn't what you expect to do when you get a flat tire.
                          A flat tire shouldn't be a tow bill. A flat tire shouldn't be I hope I have cell reception. A flat tire shouldn't be I hope I don't run out of gas staying warm waiting for help to find me. I best remember to add a jack and a wheel wrench into the van.

                          The brakes however are another story.
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ID:	602461 With the wheels off the plan was inspect with a visual, flush the line and reassemble. That didn't happen. The brake bleeders were corroded to a point where I was concerned they would snap off and I'd open a can of worms I wasn't prepared to deal with due to time and effort required, or financially in parts. I call it planning but who knows?
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                          The van is turned around and the rear brake shoes will require retracting to get the drums off. The bleeder as well Is hidden in a limited access location, corroded and on inspection I'm expecting I'll just replace both rear wheel brake cylinders and be done with it. The brake lines going into them, if they will back out without twisting off, that's the $64 dollar question.

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ID:	602458I'm expecting if I do this, it's going to be work. A good days work. As it is, it can wait. But it's on the list.

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                          • #58
                            Digging in the garden today... Moving soil and flipping dirt.
                            I call it being well rounded in my interests. It's being a bit down to earth, nurturing growth, being with nature. The best part is a general calming interest doing so. But truth be told, I just like excavating.
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ID:	602476If you look closely you'll notice the little dozer.
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ID:	602477I know, I had one of those and still ended up on a shovel.

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ID:	602478But I did price out some parts. I won't bore you with prices, but those drums, they were sold by the pound x 4. Doing it myself, I'm thinking a couple of days work. I'll do the rears first, hopefully it won't need drums. I'll penetrate oil the brake line and hope for the best. The trick is not to be heavy handed.
                            New wheel cylinders are cheap so that's a no brainer. Shoes and the quality of pads, I'm on the fence. I'm going to reuse the calipers and rotors, but when the time comes to do the job, if I do break a bleeder, I'll be prepared to deal with it.



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                            • #59
                              From time to time I get some great ideas. Other times, not so much. I went to the wreckers the other day. Thought I could tough it out. It had been raining, place was a mud hole, barely above Canadian freezing for temps. I didn't tough it out. I wasn't a total puss, but I did leave earlier then expected.

                              I went for a reason. Seems in my poor planning I neglected to procure all the needed hard ware for these brakes to work? Turns out, the bracket holding the caliper needs to be longer or extend further due to the larger rotor being used. Duh right? I had 20 years to find them and never did. Seemed like a good idea at the time to wait I guess?

                              Well it would have been grand if it ended there, but as I mentioned, I got my chill on. Not before grabbing a marker lens and a replacement mirror for the van previously mentioned, but I never made it to the Ford line before calling it a mistake.

                              So I go home and look at the mess and start thinking. Hmm?
                              Not having done this before, I'm thinking, " should have bought a kit ".
                              But I didn't so now I'm left to please myself with a solution.
                              That solution my still be the proper bracket, but I also new I had options. I'm a welder. Don't think it didn't cross my mind to just start welding.

                              When I left the wreckers I told the guy if he doesn't see me again till the spring to not take it personally. Weekend shows we hit a double digit? But who's to say a guy will even find the part? Anyways, I looked at what I had, what I had to make it work, thought about it some more and this is what I came up with.
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ID:	602653Smoking cigarettes and tapping holes. I had an idea and went with it.
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ID:	602654Starting to take shape, I was thinking it might work?

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ID:	602655For a dumb guy I managed to make a solid. I have to replace that head bolt I screwed in but it fastening up the bottom nicely.
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ID:	602652The top as well was treated to a bit of fabrication to allow the caliper to be repositioned further out.
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ID:	602656While I'm sure this will work for a braking solution, for now anyways, I'm discovering a need for backing up on those lower control arm strut rods. One thing after another. But it's coming along slowly.

                              Buddy Mike took the grill and some small dash parts into the chrome shop. Ouch. He didn't tell me how much but said I should be grateful mine has a painted grill.

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                              • #60
                                Click image for larger version  Name:	IMG_6747.JPG Views:	0 Size:	74.3 KB ID:	602703Click image for larger version  Name:	IMG_6745.JPG Views:	0 Size:	94.2 KB ID:	602704Click image for larger version  Name:	IMG_6746.JPG Views:	0 Size:	100.9 KB ID:	602705Click image for larger version  Name:	IMG_6744.JPG Views:	0 Size:	86.1 KB ID:	602706 Real life, real drama. I took back a couple of over priced outer tie rod ends. Kept the brake hoses. Looks like I'll be updating my pay pal and do some shopping on line.

                                If memory serves, I went 1-1/8". 1" if I do it again. I chose that not because it was engineered to position the pads completely to the rotor surface, but because it allowed for similar bolts to be placed side by side. lol. Live and learn.

                                Still holding out hope to find a couple of factory replacements but this will work and function, serving the purpose. While I had studded the two holes as shown in the 3rd picture with the caliper face showing, I counter sunk one when I thought it might interfere with the brake hose.

                                Picture #4. Those strut rods and the turning radius. I'm going to do some reading up on alignment and such. In this picture I have the original strut bar in place. Time for plan "B". I'm going to mock this up a bit further and see how it comes together. Castor and camber right? I'm thinking it's time to do some reading and go back to the drawing board.

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ID:	602707 EDIT. To show I get lucky... sometimes.
                                Last edited by Noel; 10-02-2019, 07:25 PM.

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