Monday, March 31, 2014

Brakes episode 2

I read a great quote today. "Those who wish for the weekend are wishing their lives away". Found in the book "Drive Nacho Drive".

This vacation is the only thing I can think about lately. I'm so excited for the unknown, excited for the mountains, excited for the beach, excited to spend time with my wife, excited for the open, winding roads.
But there is a lot to do on the Westy first.

Once again, I got out of work early, so I headed to the Westy.
The project at hand was the front flex brake lines and a fluid flush. 
The flex lines went in smoothly. Until the small hard line on the left caliper snapped. I then had to run to the auto parts store again to buy a hard line and a flaring tool.
I had to make this little guy

Got the brakes flushed. One of the bleeder screws would not turn out. So there was still air in the lines. 

Then the next weekend I installed the gasket parts for the master cylinder and new bleeder screws. Bled the brakes and we have a nice solid brake pedal now. 

I got to go to a local junk yard in search of a vanagon. Luckily there was a blue 1983 transporter. It had been striped to almost nothing. But, I grabbed some nice parts and installed them all on Sunday. New tail lights fixed the lights not working. New grab handle that was missing on the passenger A pillar. New brake cap. And some new weather striping for the passenger door.

I installed the new slider door handle and greased up all the sliders and hinges.

I also restored a fog light I had laying around from one of my old jeeps.
I will mount it to the back as a rear flood light.


Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Fog Lights Install

I got off work early yesterday (like 11 am). Because I am a big supporter of avoiding homework,  I decided to go and work on the van.
With my tools and my dog and headed to my parent's, where the van is being stored right now.
I decided the fog lights were the project for today. So that is where I started. I ended up having to take the bumper off, the trim for the dash, and column trim. The wiring went smoothly: just follow the instructions. I found great places to run all the wires and mounted the switch in a blank whole in the dash. It looks factory this way. The mounting of the lights put up a small fight, but not too bad.
I also investigated some issues.
1). The sliding door outside handle. You had to rotate it way too far to engage. I took the door apart  and found the outside handle was broken on the inside. So, I ordered a new one.
2). The windshield sprayers did not spray, instead the fluid poured out of the grill. I did not have a tool to try and grab the hose, and the nozzles were broken. I ordered replacement nozzles as well.

I will hopefully finish the brakes this weekend. That way I can get it to my house(where all my tools are) so I can do small projects when I have time.


The puppy wants to go camping

Brakes episode 1

Well, my dad and I got the pads all installed on Sunday. The rotors and bearings look like they have been replaced recently.  But, the pedal is still spongey. We ordered the rubber flex brake lines for the front. They were looking very old and cracked.
My dad just text me tonight and said there is brake fluid on the ground, so I guess it still has some issues. 
I stopped by the local Vw dealership this afternoon. They want $20-50 for a brake resavoiur cap, depending on what one I needed. That is insane, it's a $10 part for any non-German car. 
We are going to get it registered and plated this week, so we can be legal.
I also ordered a new canvas pop top. It has three windows instead of the one. I figured the more air flow, the better. 


Thursday, March 13, 2014

This weekend projects.

Well this weekend came and passed. I did get the radio install done. In the world of radio installs, it was one of the worst. Someone had butchered the wiring previously. It added about an hour of work to how long it should have taken. They had more than a few wires switched. But, it is done and the radio works well. I was surprised by how good the speakers sounded.
Look at that mess!! Also, I still don't know what that switch next to the radio does.

My father then showed up right as I was finishing the radio.
We then spent about 2 hours cleaning every square inch of the van with bleach. It did wonders to how it looked on the inside, also got rid of the old, wet camper smell.

All in all it was a good day of work.
Going to put new front brakes on this Saturday. Along with rotors and wheel bearings. Brakes the most important part of a car(van). So we might as well do a brake fluid flush. 30 year old brake fluid is not o.k.!


Friday, March 7, 2014

The Westy has made its travels to Nebraska

Its here!!
It is a little rougher then we thought it would be, but all in all the body and interior look to be in good condition considering the age.
I am really impressed with the ground clearance of this van. It was sitting next to my dad's Dakota and it had more clearance. Thats should come in handy!
On the first day we installed a new set of wipers(so exciting I know).
But the power is so low. We tried to take it up a hill at 60 mph and it lost alot of speed on the relatively short hill. I'm hoping that it was just how cold it was(25 degrees).
So now we are considering an engine swap. I am leaning towards the bostig set up. The cost is high so I have done the research but have not pulled the trigger on it.

But, there are some things that need to addressed before I go forcing a new motor in the van.
My wife, dad and I are going to install a pioneer radio and major cleaning this weekend.