Tuesday, September 8, 2009

School starts

So, Summer has effectively ended around here. We attended our friends' goodbye-to-Summer BBQ last night, and sent the kids off to their first day of school this morning with bags full of supplies. If going to see the Dead in a friend's bus wasn't motivation enough, there's nothing quite like the fear of Fall to get that Summer effort moving at a dead run. I've got to figure out what can reasonably be done with very little time between now and the rainy season and then Winter.

I figure I have about a month, maybe 6 weeks at the outside before the rains really hit here in the PacNW. Of course, it isn't drought between then and now so I need to plan while considering that could lose an afternoon to bad weather. I can't afford to lose a day to poor planning, like I lost Labor Day weekend. How did I manage that? Well, I took too long coming to the realization that I couldn't fit the new engine and the old fuel tank together. I ordered the WestMarine tank I mentioned in the previous post, but not until Friday. So, I was able to drop the engine and get the old tank out, but I can't move forward until the new tank is in hand and I've figured out how to fit it. Back to planning... I have maybe 3 dry Sunday afternooons and a few after-work evenings available. In order to be ready for rain, I need to have a few systems buttoned up.

1 - engine mount
This work needs to be completed, if for no other reason for my sanity. I think Hal's wife will have him on the couch if this stretches into the deep Fall anyway. We're very close on the tower, but the dogbone needs to be tied into the deal still. This will be close, and will keep Hal busy most of the way to the rainy season.
Estimate: 8 hours more.

2 - fuel system
The fuel tank questions need to be resolved and no longer force the engine to be dropped. Fuel tank in and fuel filler hose routed at a minimum. If the rest of it could tie in, that would be a bonus, as getting to the top of the tank isn't easy once the engine is in. This is my first priority. Tank will be on-hand Thursday afternoon. If I can resolve some fitment issues and get it into the tank bay before the weekend, it would be fantastic. I don't expect that to happen, however. Better expectation: lose the weekend to it, but done by Sunday night.
Estimate: 6 hrs.

3 - vacuum system
It is almost ready. Once the engine can go back in with the stock vacuum pump, this system is effectively finished. There's the vacuum ball. Figure a couple of hours tops for that. I can leave a few of the remaining lines disconnected, but I will have to seal them off for the Winter. This should take less than an hour. Hooking them up properly can't be completed until later anyway (no air filter, don't want to hook up the waste gate until the mounts are done).
Estimate: 1 hr now, 1 hr later.

4 - primary electrical
Once the engine is in "for good" I can put the starter in. It gets in the way of the p-side tranny bolt access, so I'd rather leave it out until the engine is in for the Winter. Installing the starter should takes less than an hour, but it'll probably be one of those after-work deals, and everything takes longer in the dark. You remember I don't have a garage for this project, right? After the starter, there's the battery and the hot-start relay. Those items can wait. There's little point in leaving the battery outside in the rain all Winter, and I'll need some thinking time on the wires to know how to hook up the relay.
Estimate: 1hr now, 2 hrs later.

4 - coolant system
Based on the estimates for the other systems I'll be working on, I should be able to focus on the coolant issues by the mid-point of my 2nd dry Sunday. With the fuel tank resoolved, we'll be back to the original (auto-tranny) water flange, so the biggest immediate issue will be resolved. The best goal for now, though, is to have a clear plan for locating the radiator, and routing the pipes. Perhaps, if that is planned early enough, I can have the pipes routed before the rain hits. Not terribly likely, but if everything else stays within estimates, there will be 1-1/2 afternoons.

5 - engine holes
The turbo is loosely hanging on the exhaust ports. The oil cooler is disconnected. The water system is open. All this needs to be closed up, and rags hammed into openings. We won't get to the new oil cooler unless something uber-fantastic happens, so the old one will be put back on to seal the system.
Estimate: 1 hr.

Anyway, no real meat since the last post other than I ordered the tank, and I got the luggage rank re-installed on the top. I never got around to painting it, but at least it's clean underneath it. I'll post pictures and progress on the tank after its in-hand and (hopefully) in-bus.

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