16 April, 2014

More truck time. Progress thus far.

The problem with getting anything done on my truck is my brother in law's shop is in Houston, about a 45 minute drive away from me, so getting up there when I have time has been difficult at best.

This past weekend, I was able to get up there, and spend a few hours before the sun went away on us, and got a bit done on it...

So far I have the following removed.

#1. Front and rear drive shafts.
#2. Starter.
#3. All electrical connections to both the transmission, and the transfer case.
#4. Both tranny, and T case linkages.
#5. Trans cooler lines.
#6. Crossmember (trans / t case now supported by tranny jack).
#7. Access plate
#8. All torque converter retaining nuts.
#9. All bolts excluding the upper right hand retaining transmission to engine.
#10. Exhaust retaining nuts and bolts. The joints were soaking in penetrating oil when I left it...

One of the converter nuts rounded off, and we had to chisel the thing off the stud. We were VERY careful and managed to not damage the flex plate.

I need to get in and get a set of nuts for the converter, and some fresh nuts for the catalytic converters as they came off pretty rusty.

Honestly, if I had the $$ to do it at this time, I would pull the cats, and the cat back remainder of the exhaust and go with Magnaflow stainless replacements. But yesterday was Tax day, need I say more?

My next trip to the shop, I need to put the crossmember back on, spin the converter to expose the drain bolt, drop the pan and drain the converter, then drain the T case.

With the pan out, I will clean it up, locate mark and drill for the drain plug hole, then hand it over to have the plug kit welded in. (Post install photos WILL be coming).

Once the pan is back on, we finish dropping the trans / t-case, and move on to pulling the converter, and seeing if we can see where the leak is coming from. Most likely just replace all the seals in the front while we are there, main oil seal, bushing, pump seal and o-ring. Then prime the converter, and reverse the process...

Once the tranny problem is sorted out, and before I leave the shop, I am going to get them to finish trimming the back side of my front fenders to keep those big meats out during compression on turns. With the Autospring 2.5" level / stock shocks / springs I never had a rubbing problem, even at the hardest turning / compression, but with the Rancho QuickLift Loaded, I have had nothing but problems. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE the shocks themselves, the shock damping is fantastic, but the springs they use are horrid. I know the extra weight of the winch and winch mount add to the problem, I have repeatedly asked, to dead silence, no answer what so ever, if I can swap in the Heavy Duty front coil springs from the Payload Package F150 to keep the nose out of the weeds... I understand their being leery of recommending it, but the problem WAS caused by a Rancho product, you'd think they would want to help a customer sort it out...

If I find out I CAN use them, I am going to swap out the Rancho coils and Coil Sumo Springs (Coil Spring boosters) and swap in the heavy duty Ford coils and call it good...

While I am in there, I am also swapping out the fuel filter, and performing an oil change.

And I often get asked why I am putting so much effort into keeping 35s on a truck that is only running a 2.5" level. My wife is only 5' tall, so no, I don't really want to go any higher.

Next on the truck maintenance agenda I do at home...
#1.The dreaded spark plug change on a Ford Triton 5.4L 3V.
#2. Coolant flush and fill.
#3. Flush and fill power steering fluid.
#4. Flush and fill brake fluid.
#5. drain, clean, and refill differentials.
#6. Sand, prime, paint, clear worn through paint spots on back of cab and front of bed from where the toolbox rubbed.
#7. Plasti-Dip black the rims. I know the Plasti-Dip thing tends toward the youth fad side, but I am sick and tired of dealing with brake dust, even with ceramic pads. And it would appear I am going toward an Arizona Beige and black scheme with this truck...

Still in my wishlist for mods on this truck...
#1. In bumper LED "Flood" reverse lights. The stockers make backing up in off road at night a scary experience...
#2. Leather and wood trim interior conversion.
#3. Traction Adding Differentials (ARB Air Lockers) and 4.56 gearing. Will have that done by a driveline shop. Not willing to take that project on!
#4. "Infotainment system" with bluetooth Android integration and mp3 / mpeg4 playback (video to passenger seats obviously...
#5. Straightening and reinforcement of my existing Delta gullwing toolbox and Tan spray on bedliner coating of box. Reinstallation of antenna mount and 102" CB whip.
#6. Finish design and build of CB mount. Remount CB and fine tune.
#7. Replace the rusted Hunter tube steps with new Go Rhino units... No rust, far less likely to rot out.

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