Sunday, January 1, 2012

Today I got the rear axle almost finished. All it lacks is a pin to hold in the universal joint, and the plugs to cover the holes where the pin is installed. I'll order that stuff tomorrow or Tuesday, and with any luck should have the car back together and running this week. Here's the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AfxWPsF4KhQ

Monday, January 2, 2012

I spent a leisurely holiday reading, doing a couple of crosswords, web surfing, ordering a supply of eight U-joint pins, and grocery shopping. I'll always have a supply of those pins, as long as I remember where I keep them. This afternoon I started up the splitter and started turning big chunks into smaller ones. Some parts of that old trunk were nearly two feet wide, and pretty heavy, but the splitter handled them with no trouble. Some of the wood from that log is pretty wet, so it will go in a separate stack in the garage to dry.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

My morning project was sorting jumbled cotter pins by size and putting them away in drawers. This afternoon I went to the courthouse to pay the taxes on the trailer, went to the water district office and paid the water bill, and when I got home I unloaded all that split wood from the truck and stacked it in the garage to dry out. I was going to go out and cut more wood, but ran out of time. Maybe tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

This morning I went through my pile of demountable clincher rims to see how many I have that are fit to use. Two are pretty good, two are marginal, and the other five are pretty sorry. To have a full set of five usable ones it looks like another trip to the Model T graveyard is in the works. This afternoon I got busy with the shovel and did a little more filling of the gas line ditch under the carport. I only spent abut a quarter hour on it, because I wanted to get some woodcutting done. I drove out to the west hedge and cut enough small branches to fill one box, plus a few large pieces. A box of small pieces is enough to start fires for two or three days.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

After a leisurely morning of reading the paper, doing the puzzles, and reading online forums, I actually accomplished a couple of things this afternoon. Taking advantage of a warm day with the temperature in the fifties, I sprayed a can of Krylon on that last cabinet for the shop. Tomorrow I should be ble to get it in place and put the drawers in it. The last job of the day was making and installing a pull-up bar in the shop to provide some exercise. At my age, if I can get strong enough to get my chin above the bar, that will be an accomplishment.

Friday, January 6, 2012

You can tell by that space to the left that I still haven't figured out how to make pictures show up with this new Kompozer program. I worked on it more today, but no luck so far. When I first used the previous program, Adobe PageMill, in 1999, I started working on it in early September and finally figured out how to make the pictures show up on Thanksgiving Day. I hope this one won't take that long. After grocery shopping, the main job of the day was setting up the last of my three 18-drawer cabinets in the shop, then cleaning the dirt, spider webs, bug parts, and mud dauber nests out of all the drawers. Each of the 54 drawers has slots for dividers to make 16 compartments, for a potential total of 864 compartments. There won't be that many, of course, because some items will be big enough or plentiful enough to take up the space of two or more compartments.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

After a holiday break, the new auction season started today. I drove up to the fairgrounds to see if there was anything to keep me there. The answer was no, so I came home and got back to work on the touring car. The main activity of the day was  hunting up the proper nuts and bolts to reinstall the rear axle, drilling holes for cotter pins in some of the bolts, cleaning all the pieces, and painting the lot. This evening I drove down to Ponca city to buy some new overalls because I haven't found anyplace in Kansas that sells the ones I prefer. While there I had dinner and took in a movie which I recommend. The title and the premise make We Bought a Zoo sound pretty sappy, but after seeing two pages of glowing reviews on IMBD I decided to give it a try. The reviews were right. It's a very good movie.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

I started the day getting ready to reinstall the rebuilt rear axle in the car. At noon I drove over to Oxford to see if the Patterson auction had anything I wanted. Again the answer was no, so I came home and spent the rest of the day on the car. I got the driveshaft and axle back in. Now I have to put in the oil, remember where I put the brakes and reinstall them, and put the wheels back on. With any luck I'll get that done tomorrow and take a test drive.

Monday, January 9, 2012

This morning I was up at 5:30 and in the shop before seven, and spent the day on the touring car. I reinstalled the brakes, put on the rear wheels, adjusted the brakes, put in cotter pins where they were missing, filled grease cups, and borrowed a carburetor off the roadster because I know it's one that works. I ended the day replacing the copper fuel line with a steel one, because copper tubing sometimes breaks from metal fatigue. I usually knock off work at five, but I stayed at it another half hour today because I wanted to finish that fuel line. There are just a few more little chores to do, then I should be ready for a test drive to try out the new rear axle.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

This was a busy day. In the morning I put six empty gas cans in the truck and made a fuel run down to the casino. That's the least expensive gasoline in the area. I filled the truck and filled the cans. Those thirty gallons will keep the yard equipment going for another few months. Back home I got in the shop and spent a few hours cleaning up the touring car and the area around it. By late afternoon I was finally ready to start up the car and take it for a test run. I drove into town to buy groceries, and it ran well. But on the way home I found that the right front wheel was wobbling. When I got back I jacked up the front end and found that the wheel is loose on the spindle. So tomorrow's assignment is to take the wheel off and see if the bearing is toast.

Worn bearing
Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Yes, toast indeed. In fact, the bearings on both front wheels are shot. So after cleaning up the old bearings and seeing how bad they are, I got on the phone and ordered the very expensive new ones. It's OK to skimp on body parts or other items that don't affect safety, but you don't want wheels coming off as you're drivng down the road. Ordering new wheel bearings was the last automotive job of the day. With a dose of real winter on the way, I spent the afternoon getting ready. Part of that was going up to the roof and getting the tarps in place and fastened down. Fortunately the wind was from the north, so the tarps on the south facing slope weren't blowing around. With the roof ready for snow, I fired up the splitter and went to work on some big tree chunks that have been sitting in the back yard for several years waiting to be turned into firewood. With all that wood now stacked in the garage I'm ready for a day or two of winter weather. This far south it doesn't usually last long. This year the winter has been especially tame, with highs many days in the high forties and fifties, and even an occasional sixty. The average annual daily high here for January is 43.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Snow! Not much, but enough during the night to turn most of the ground white. I lazed in bed until eight, and when I got up the outside thermometer claimed 20. It was a good day to stay inside, and I spent the day in the shop with the heater on, sortng and putting away hardware. I took things out of the cans I bought them in at auctions, and sorted them into drawers. I did all the castle nuts, finished the square nuts, and did all the grease fittngs. There's a lot of sorting and putting away to do, so I just have to make an occasional day of it. By the time I finished, a little after four, eight hours of sunshine and wind had evaporated most of the snow and the temperaure had climbed to freezing.

Friday, January 13, 2012

The day started with sorting a can of nuts in the shop. Then it was off to town for shopping. This afternoon I spent some time inspecting Model T wheels and demountable clincher rims, trying to decide what I have that's fit to use and what I need to get to have a full set of wheels and rims. I have a pair of good front wheels, and good felloes and hubs to make a pair of good rear wheels. Millions of demountable rims were made, so there are still a lot of them around, but a lot of them are in sad shape. In my pile of nine, I'd say two are OK. All the others are too warped to fit well or rusted enough to make the edges sharp. It looks like I'm going to be off to Model T Haven again to shop for some good rims.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

After doing laundry I went to an auction, and for the first time this year found a few items that persuaded me to stick around. In keeping with tradition, the first couple of hours were devoted to a mountain of trash they'd have to pay me to haul away. I spent that time reading the paper, doing the puzzles, and getting started on the new Model T Times. When they got around to anything I cared about, I picked up a pair of old Ford wrenches for $5, a box of good stainless pots and pans for $1, and a pair of heavy duty extension cords for $1. As usual, there were some items that went for more than I was wiling to pay. I know that sooner or later most of them will turn up at some other sale at a better price.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

I spent a lazy Sunday doing a lot of research and online hunting for parts sources. I visited a local auto parts store to see if they could get some of the bearings, cups, and seals used in Model T's. No luck. Looking for one bearing online, I did find it listed at a half dozen differnt sources and priced from $48.79 to $77.78. It pays to shop around.

Monday, January 16, 2012

I remembered to mark the patriotic holiday by raising the flag in front of the house. It was a remarkably pleasant day, and I took advantage of the nice weather with some outside work. I spent the afternoon with the sandblaster, derusting a demountable clincher rim and a running board tool box. I had to take time out for a trip to town for more sand, but even if I hadn't had to do that there would have been work left over to do later. The forecast is for more winter this week but more nice weather on the weekend, so maybe I can get more blasting done then.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Today's main project was filling holes and low spots in the rim I sandblasted yesterday. Tomorrow I'll grind the raised filling welds as flat as I can so the rim will fit on the wheel. That will make one rim ready to galvanize with four more to go. I have to sandblast them first so I can see whether they're usable or fixable. I may have enough already, or I may have to shop for one or more better ones. After I finished the welding on that, I went to town for groceries. I took along the tool box I sandblasted yesterday because the lid had a split in one corner. I took it to a body shop and had the split fixed, so the box is on its way to being ready for painting. I still need to blast the inside of it and the bottom, then it will be ready for paint.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

O joy! O rapture unforseen! The cloudy skies are now serene...

Mr. Gilbert captured my state of mind very nicely in that line. Last night, at long last, I figured out how to make pictures show up on the website. I was up until after midnight working on it, but I went to bed happy. In 1999 it took me from early September until Thanksgiving Day to figure it out in Adobe PageMill. This time it took me from early November to January 18 to figure it out in Kompozer. I was at least a week faster this time. I must be getting smarter.

So after I got up and around this morning, the main job of the day was grinding those welded areas smooth. I got that done, and also spent some time going back to my December blog entries and adding some pictures. I did a little bit of shop tidying, putting away some parts, but I really need to devote a day to just that. Things do tend to get scattered about and piled up.
Filling low spots

Thursday, January 19, 2012

This was going to be the day to make real progress in shop straightening, but it didn't work out that way. I did a little of that, but there were some tools soaking in rust remover to deal with, so I had to dry and prep some of those, loosen up a couple of adjustable wrenches that were stuck, and oil some of the tools. I had some shopping to do, and that used up a big chunk of the afternoon. By the time I got home it was time to bring in wood for the evening and get ready to light a fire in the kitchen stove. I have more shopping to do in the morning, but I hope to get a little more done in the shop too.

Friday, January 20, 2012

After a late start and some grocery shopping, I spent the rest of the day in the workshop. The main job of the day was repairing and painting a Ford #1349 wrench.  It's used for hubcaps and wheel nuts. I also worked on a few other old tools, but the 1349 got most of my attention because it will go in the running board tool box on one of the cars. The biggest tool box is the one I had fixed at the body shop on Tuesday. It will go on the '23 touring. I have a slightly smaller one that will go on the '15 roadster.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

I was up early and on the road about six, on my way to Hutchinson for the midwinter Model T clinic. This is always an enjoyable event. There are always some interesting T's on display, and the seminars provide helpful learning, often with demonstrations and displays. This year Stan Howe brought several restored carburetors and discussed the evolution of accessory carburetors for the Model T. He also shared some helpful carburetor restoration tips. The afternoon session was devoted to a current project to develop a dynamometer for the Model T and test the effects of various modifications that are available for the car. After the clinic I headed for Wichita where I had some tasty 잡 체 at Manna Wok and took in a movie at the very classy Warren Theater. I saw The Artist, which we'll never get at the local theater down in Podunk. It was worth the time. It's a new silent movie set in the late twenties and early thirties, and very well done.

Above: Baby Lincoln speedster.

Left: Stan Howe discusses carburetors.

"Straight-eight" twin engine Model T by Gary Lefever.

1912 touring by Jim Thomas.
Sunday, January 22, 2012

On a lazy Sunday morning I lazed in bed until eight, then spent most of the morning posting pictures of yesterday's seminar on the Model T forum, and some of them above. This was the first day of a warmup, and this afternoon I got out the sandblaster and finished the runningboard tool box I started last week. There are supposed to be highs in the fifties for several more days, so maybe I can get the blasting done on more of those rusty rims.

Monday, January 23, 2012

This morning I tried soldering a couple of separated panels on  that tool box. I had no luck with it, so I went to the Model T forum seeking advice. Several people had suggestions, so I'll start trying them and see what works. By one o'clock the outside temperature was pushing 50, so I got out the sandblaster and went to work on one of the rims. That work always takes longer than I think it should but I finished the rim by 3:30. That makes two done and at least two to go. I'm not sure all the rims I have are OK to use. I may need to make another visit to Model T Haven and pick up one or two more good ones.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Change of plans. I thought I'd spend a few minutes shoveling more dirt in the gas line ditch under the carport. After a few minutes I was making good progress, so I kept going. Two hours later the whole job was done, including getting out the wheelbarrow and taking the leftovers out to the front drive to fill a low spot. With that job done, I did my grocery shopping. That used up the morning. I spent most of the afternoon with the sandblaster, blasting another demountable rim. That makes three done. The next one has a pretty heavy coat of rust, so it may take more that one session to finish.
Here's a video of this afternoon's fun: Sandblasting rims.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Most of the morning was devoted to updating the Parkerfield city website (http://www.parkerfieldks.org). The rest of it was taken up by an appointment with the doc. In the afternoon I bagged, labeled, and filed small Model T parts, then went for my three mile run. I've been too much of a cold weather sissy, but this week I've made myself take the time to run three days in a row. If I can keep it up, maybe I can get the time down from an embarrassing 33, almost 34,  minutes at least to under 32:00.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Lots of little minor chores ate up the morning. While in town I did stop at the welding supply to look into what  materials are available for a project I'm contemplating. I'm thinking about how to make a small trailer to pull behind a Model T. It's only in the contemplation stage now. I'm not yet ready to make actual plans.  About one this afternoon the outdoors had warmed up to the high fifties and I thought I'd sandblast another rim. I went out to the barn and turned on the compressor, then remembered that one of the sawhorses that hold my work was falling apart and had to be fixed before I could use it again. I didn't get the thing cobbled back together until three, and setting up the rest of the equipment wouldn't have left me a lot of time for blasting. So that will wait for tomorrow. Instead I did some painting. One paint job was shooting a couple of coats of primer on that running board tool box I've been workng on. The other was a couple of coats of appliance enamel on a hub flange. To be continued.

Friday, January 27, 2012

After brief grocery shopping I spent the rest of the mornng in the shop straightening and putting away. By one o'clock the outside had warmed up into the mid fifties, and I proceded to sandblasting. For some reason the work went rather slowly today, and it took most of the rest of the afternoon to finish one rim. Before quitting I took a few minutes to do a little blasting on one more rim, to see what was under all that rust. Ths rim is poor enough that I think I'll shop for a better one rather than try to use it. If I don't find a better one at the Wichita swap meet next week I'll make another visit to Model T Haven.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

This was laundry day. That and an hour of checking email and online forums ate up the whole morning. The main afternoon project was sanding the tool box and spraying on another coat of primer. When it's done I don't expect the thing to look like new, but it will look pretty good.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

After reading about timers on one of the Model T forums, I decided to study the one on my touring car. I cleaned it up and removed all the rust and made it pretty. It's the one on the left in the picture. The timer on the right is the same kind, but painted. It was in a box of several timers I picked up at an auction. There were many different versions  of timers made for the Model T. This one is a roller timer, the kind that came on the car from the factory. I spent a good part of the day cleaning and reading about timers. In the afternoon I got back to the tool box project, sanding the primer I applied yesterday and spraying on another coat. I ended the day with a trip to town. I took the Camry, with Daisy riding along, and left it for service in the morning, then Daisy and I walked home from town.

Monday, January 30, 2012

This morning started with a little more work on timers. I removed all the small parts off a couple of them, stripped the paint off the one that's black in the picture, and put the pair in a tub of rust remover. Once they're derusted I'll repaint and reassemble them. With the timers soaking, I turned my attention to the corner of the shop where I've been keeping large boxes of squashed aluminum cans. I took them all out and put them on the trailer. Then I drove down to the recycling center and got my $210. With that corner of the shop cleared, I'll clean it up and use the set of shelves in the corner to store sanders, drills, and other power tools.


Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The day started with Daisy and me jogging to town to get the Camry. I did the three miles in 31:33, not nearly as embarrassing as that 34:49 a couple of weeks ago. Looking back at previous times, I see it's been over a year since I did it in under 31:00, so I need to run more and get it down to a more reasonable number.

After yesterday's hauling cans to the recyclers, I spent today on the corner of the shop that had been occupied by all those big boxes of cans. I brought unexpected excitement to several dozen spiders, ruining their day with the shop vac, and cleared out a lot of stuff that has accumulated there over the years with the thought "I'll deal with that later". Well, now is later. The time flies by when you're trying to figure out where things should go. I made a pretty good dent in the clutter but, as always, there's more to do.

With the walls cleared of cobwebs, dead moths, and other debris, I did some decorating with signs left over from the days when they were manufactured here.

So January ends with my workshop in better shape than it started, and a few other jobs finished. But with spring just 49 days away, it will soon be time to get back to work on the house, and several of my winter projects remain unstarted. Oh well, maybe next year.