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Old 01-08-2014, 12:45 AM   #1341
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Yeah, its nice, and I feel kinda bad that I will chop, cut and rebuild, but it was going to scrap before I snagged it... and I am pleased with the price!

The truth is that the eye is crummy... what you see here, I could normally do in a few days, and its months of bitty hours of work when I either feel up to it or when I reach critical mass with frustration...
I remind me of the cartoon with the two Vultures sitting together, and one says to the other "Patience my @ss, I'm gonna go down there and kill something!"

I can do "big stuff" like disassemble something and paint it, but detail work is a farce most days. I am scared to tackle some things in case I realize later I screwed it up. My buddy has been helping because he needs stuff blasted and powder coated too. he will be putting a plug on the oven this week so we can do a test. Seems like a fair trade!

Before he headlamp castings are coated, I did spend time figuring out that I cannot rivet these headlamp casting back in place... it would be foolish, as I might need to remove them to repolish the skin. I made a template of the headlamp periphery and will form an aluminum sheet plate to go inside the body, and with this in place the two pieces will sandwich the body with ST screws.

The work that you are seeing is all foundation work... massing tools, equipment, and knowledge for the future. I think when this all clears up, and the go button is ready, its gonna pay off big time.
Being able to cut, bend, roll, weld, and finish Aluminum and other sheet metal will be huge in the grand scheme.
I have a huge book now of sketches and detailed plans, from the Range Rover seat frames, and upholstery patterns, to a detailed and dimensioned tow hitch frame, that incorporates some nice additional features.

After surgery....
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Old 01-08-2014, 05:03 AM   #1342
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............ to a detailed and dimensioned tow hitch frame, that incorporates some nice additional features.
Steve

Good luck and keep us posted on the surgery! You definitely have assembled the dream garage! Can't wait to see the dream airstream!!

Here is a business idea for you; The airstream inn. People bring their moho's to your bed and breakfast and spend the day in your shop working on projects. Kinda like shop class in high school! What I wouldn't give to go back and say "Hey, I am gonna really pay attention this time in metal shop!!".

Will you be making your tow hitch plans public? If so, I would love to see them. I am looking at beefing up or replacing ours.

We are doing our's kinda in reverse of most people. We are concentrating on mechanical and exterior then and only then interior. Rather do the outside have it looking nice and 100% leak proof and be on folding chairs and cots inside then have a really nice interior that will leak and can't go anywhere! It also gives us a lot of time with an empty space to get a feel of the possible.

I think when we go on our extended road trip when I retire in 3 years, I am going to change one of the stops from the Keys, Fl to the Keys, CA mega tool garage!

(typed on real keyboard with large monitor using spell check )
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Old 01-08-2014, 11:40 PM   #1343
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Too funny Dave!
Will be posting plans of what I am up to... and it will be a bolt on hitch FYI.
I have to incorporate some kind of fuel tank protection, as mine has none.
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Old 01-09-2014, 08:10 PM   #1344
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Test #1...
The headlamp casting fit in the Oven!


Test #2...
The oven works... very well in fact... reached 450deg F in 15 minutes, and went on through steps to max out at 550deg F!




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Old 01-09-2014, 09:06 PM   #1345
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excellent idea for your 'curing' oven!
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Old 01-11-2014, 10:08 PM   #1346
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Oven is working good...
Cleaning cycles on both ovens were run for 2.5 hrs each.

Upper oven before:


Upper oven after cleaning cycle:



Started collecting parts for a first test of Semi-Gloss Black powder.

Leveler brackets, one of which I had previously refinished in rustoleum rattle can black.


The ugly one blasted and 2 bumper brackets too.


Black painted bracket getting blasted.
Note the blasted Mickey Thompson Big Black valve covers in the background... already done and awaiting color!



Casting test pieces will be these bodyside badges.
Black powder will be the backdrop, with a refinished face, then high UV resistant Clear powder over
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Old 01-12-2014, 04:55 AM   #1347
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Very nice. Can't wait to see how the badges come out!
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Old 01-12-2014, 08:48 PM   #1348
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Very nice. Can't wait to see how the badges come out!
Badges are more complex... We wanted to test some simpler stuff first.

Here is the gun we used.


Front bumper brackets were a good start.
Powder Coated with semi-gloss black.


Into the oven they went which was preheated to 400 F.



Began to flow out after a few mins.



Curing is suggested for 20 mins at 375 F.


Quick IR test of part temp... it was 375, but dropped quickly.


After 20 mins.... done.


There will be a learning curve, so we are doing non visible stuff first, but looks great.
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Old 01-13-2014, 01:01 PM   #1349
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Nice work!
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Old 01-16-2014, 12:13 AM   #1350
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So more experimentation today.
We are still learning. My buddy, Jeff is a novice too, and we are working together as he has lots of 1960 Alfa parts to coat!
If I do the coating (I want to... never been a watcher!) I cant judge the distances or see the details... so I have to stand back...

We tried a couple of badges today.
Blasted them clean... wiped them down with MEK, and ran them in the oven to outgas at 500 F.




Then wiped them down again with MEK.
Then they were READY!


Part coated...


I think I had enough on... Looks like its fuzzy felt covered!



The word is, that the powdercoat is so thick and hard, you should wipe off the areas that need to be finished differently BEFORE curing...
So, we wiped off the raised areas with a foam brush.
Messed up a couple of times, so had to touch up, so it was PLENTY thick!



In the oven they went!
Felling like Betty Crocker!
Flowed out at 450, then left them at 400 for 30 mins... checked several times with the IR thermometer and it was pretty much spot on temp wise.


Out and cooled.




Next it was the highlight areas... I had decided before to give that a "Brushed Look" to contrast with the polished skin... plus the cast pieces never polish up as well as the skin.
15 mins with some 220 on a block later...



Clear coat over it all tomorrow is the plan.
This hopefully, wil mean the badges will not tarnish and last a long time.
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Old 01-16-2014, 11:31 AM   #1351
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So when do you start excepting orders for badge renewal??
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Old 01-18-2014, 01:15 AM   #1352
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So when do you start excepting orders for badge renewal??
Put them in the mail to me Dave!

So, Bumper brackets are done... Tick.

Front Leveler Barckets were next...
Man they are heavy and complex with holes, and recesses!
Not super pretty, but they will last...


So as a warmup for the headlamp castings because they need the a similar process... a pair of cast aluminum valve covers from an alfa I have...

Outgassed at 500deg F.


Powdercoated until they look "Fuzzy"..



On the cooling rack after curing.



Done, seml-gloss black with the highlights sanded out.
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Old 02-18-2014, 02:04 PM   #1353
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The frustration continues...
Still struggling with the vision, and hope that the stars align soon for operation.

On top of that, when we went to clearcoat the badges, it was suggested to step up to the 25kva gun setting(from 15kva), to ensure the powder is attracted to the already coated areas. When we did this the gun was making an arcing noise form the power supply box...
A call to Eastwood Customer service revealed that this was not normal, and the gun would be replaced under warrantee. The replacement arrived recently, so we can get back to it now, and also move onto the headlamp and grill castings!
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Old 02-18-2014, 03:21 PM   #1354
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So, to keep my mind active...
My original steering wheel was a mess.
I had, by pure luck, found a replacement, but the color is kinda blah..



So the original was floating about the garage...



Time for some investigation.
I wanted to see how it was stitched and how the spokes were wrapped!




The leather cover is one piece, including the spoke wraps.
Here is the subtle skived(leather is thinned to a feather edge) glued joint...

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Old 02-18-2014, 03:32 PM   #1355
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I am thinking to recover it in a two tone rich brown, and cream leather.


With Robyn's help, unpicking the stitching, I peeled back the cover.

The spoke cover area was interesting..



Done.
The wheel rim is an injection molded medium density foam.
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Old 02-19-2014, 11:50 PM   #1356
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What is the wheel made of?
That was my question.

Aluminum... Probably 6061.

So... what must we do with Aluminum?

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Old 02-20-2014, 06:37 AM   #1357
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What is the wheel made of?
That was my question.

Aluminum... Probably 6061.

So... what must we do with Aluminum?
Have it chromed?

My only concern is seeing your polish jobs I can just imagine. It is a dark night you and the girlfriend are cruising down the road, your highly polished (and reflective) steering refracting light from the dash instruments so it looks like a mobile disco going down the road!

I am not saying I wont do the same. Heck I would even consider doing it this weekend if I could just figure out where I put the steering wheel!
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Old 02-20-2014, 12:45 PM   #1358
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Too funny Dave!

I guess it was more a case of "Do I really want a grubby looking yellowed finish on my steering wheel spokes?" as much as polished.
I might brush finish it, but either way I need to clearcoat the finish to stop it coming off on the hands. Cant powdercoat it either because of the molded rim.


Question....
My Propane tank gauge is clouded over... and the level gauge above the kitchen reads wrong.
I understand that I can replace the tank gauge....

I saw this, matching Teleflex LP gauge...
Wondered if I could make it work...

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Old 02-20-2014, 02:13 PM   #1359
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Too funny Dave!

I guess it was more a case of "Do I really want a grubby looking yellowed finish on my steering wheel spokes?" as much as polished.
I might brush finish it, but either way I need to clearcoat the finish to stop it coming off on the hands. Cant powdercoat it either because of the molded rim.


Question....
My Propane tank gauge is clouded over... and the level gauge above the kitchen reads wrong.
I understand that I can replace the tank gauge....

I saw this, matching Teleflex LP gauge...
Wondered if I could make it work...

This is the gauge on your tank.

http://rochestergauges.com/Pages/PDFs/TS010.pdf

My remote is 4 indicator lights on the panel so I can't guess how yours is set up. My local propane supply (not the corner fill station) had the gauge on the shelf. It is held on by two small screws and is magnetically operated and not exposed to the propane so no need to drain tank. Price was $50 -$75 but I don't remember for sure.

You can pull the gauge and put a small magnet behind it and rotate it to see how it works. My gauge worked but the rheostat to the remote was bad.
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Old 02-22-2014, 09:37 PM   #1360
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Thanks Dan, I will take a close look at that!


A little progress.

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