Thursday, October 18, 2012

Got a few more parts

Got some suspension mounts for my Jaguar XJS front end, namely the sub-frame mounts and sway bar bushings..

I didn't want to mock up the front suspension with worn out mounts and Amazon had good prices.

Based on some forum threads, I decided to get some wire wheels to clean the majority of the frame from the 50+ year old under coating.

It all comes down to collecting more and seemingly more parts in hopes of getting enough to finish a small part of the project.  Till next time.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Got the suspension out of the XJS!

Here are the parts I actually bought the car for.

There are several options for mounting this in any given vehicle.  Some weld it in solid, but when you do that, you loose some the ride quality that Jaguar engineered into it.  Some build brackets and bolt it solid into the frame, but you still end up with a some what harsher ride.  The third method is build the pick up points on your frame so that it just bolts in like it did in the car and that is what I plan on doing.

The rear suspension has a 2.88 Power Lock differential in it. Not bad, but I am running a 5 speed OD trans and the gear ratio's are not in my favor, so it's for sale!

I pulled the back cover and verified that it was actually a posi.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Parts, Parts, Parts and More Jaguar Parts

Well I finally gave up on the thought of keeping the straight axle under the truck.  I wanted power steer and power brakes and while converting to power disc brakes is affordable, converting to power steering isn't.   So I purchased an 85' Jaguar XJS V12!  It appears to be complete, but the interior is shot from having sit in the desert for who knows how long.  Finally I get to own a v12 engine, for a short time anyway.  It is the 5.3L (326 cubic inch) version and I'll end up selling it as well if I can even though after seeing some YouTube videos, they sound really sweet.  I'll end up selling the IRS as well.  If all goes well, I'll end up recovering my investment in the car and that will come in handy when I get ready to rebuild the front suspension.

 There is a lot of hoses under the hood of this car!

 Based on what appears to be a couple of re-paints, this cat has had a rough life, especially with no more miles that it had on it.

I have begun to disassemble the car to get the parts I want from it.  Harvesting the tender bits as it were.  It looks like all the trim is still in good shape as are the tail light assemblies. Even the TH400 seems to be good, no burnt transmission oil smell at all and the fluid is still pink.

Know anyone that needs some XJS parts???

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Got a new book today!

I have decided that it is time that I learn some body work skills.  It is damn certain that my truck needs body work, so it is a bonus for me that I get to try and learn how to do it.  I understand that I am no where near competent in this area.

I set about going to different forums and wading through the crap to get the actual nuggets of wisdom that a lot of craftsmen were taking the time to pass on.  The one thing that kept coming up was a specific book that most of them stated would lay a good foundation to build off of.

So I went to my default source for buying stuff, Amazon, and got me a copy.  I have been leafing through it, trying to gain an understanding of the material presented and it makes sense.  The trick now is to actually apply some hands on and try my hands at this.  While I do not plan on making it my profession, I do want to be able to say that I did all my own body and metal work on the truck.

There are  a few dents that have body structure under them, so I may end up having to get some sort of stud gun to get those taken care of.

I have had my eye on this one, again I found it at Amazon, and it is rated well by the reviewers.

(A quick note about using online reviews to make a purchase decision.  Here is my technique. For me, if I am on the fence about a particular product, I will read as many reviews as I can find about that specific product, paying special attention to model/version numbers.   You have to realize that some people are not happy with anything and weed those reviews out, also there will be others that I call padding the ballot box.  I know you have all seen those, the 'greatest thing since fire' reviews and I get the feeling that perhaps they are perhaps not honest.  I generally try and filter out all 'hated it' and 'loved it' reviews and go from there.)

I have also heard about a stud welding adapter for MIG welders and have been trying to find more info on those as well.  It would be nice to not have to buy another limited use tool.  My concern with the adapter is that most of the stud welders use an incredibly high current (advertised 1000+ amps)  for a very short duration to weld the stud on. Where as the MIG guns are designed to have more of sustained output.  So I am a little nervous that it may put too much heat into an area.  Again more research needed. Also if anyone has any experience with the adapters, please feel free to comment and let me know.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Just ordered a few more parts...

Slowly but surely, I will get all the parts I need. After listening to the sound clip on Thrush's website, I decided to get the Thrush Fully welded mufflers from Amazon.  Love the free shipping and low prices.  From what I have read, they sound nice and deep without the resonance that you might get with Flowmaster Mufflers.  Once I get them installed (a long way down the road), I'll see if I can get a sound clip of them running on my 302.

I also got a coil.  I went with the PerTronix 40011 Flame-Thrower 40,000 Volt 1.5 ohm Coil.  This should work well with the Ford Duraspark II ignitiion that I will be running.   I will still need to run a ballast resistor from what I understand.  It seems that the Duraspark control module will run a coil without a ballast resistor (the original harnesses had a resistor wire) , but the module won't last as long.

Friday, July 13, 2012

AutoArc 130 by Hobart

In a previous post I had mentioned that I got a small 110 volt welder from Amazon.  It is called an AutoArc and is made in the USA by Hobart and uses all Hobart parts.  This was important to me since, I was worried that if I needed a replacement part, I want it to be quickly available. Well I have been using the welder for a while now. Mostly just testing on scrap metal I had laying around. The welder is capable (even if I'm not) of great welds. The one thing I did notice right away was the small one pound spool of wire that it came with ran out pretty damn quickly. So I had to get some more wire. I haven't gotten a bottle of gas yet so, I just decided to order some flux cored wire which is adequate for heavier gauge steel. I got the two pack of the two pound spools this time around.  I had considered getting the 10 pound spool since I already had the Hobart Hub Kit, but decided to wait until my skills improve.


I do plan on getting a gas bottle and some solid core wire when I start doing sheet metal work on my truck.  But for right now, I am still getting the drive line in and set up properly.

More to come as I progress, both on the truck and with my welding.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Ford 5R55 Explorer Transmission Issues

I had promised Andy a review on my experience and here it is. Sorry it took so long.

     My 03' Explorer had 92k+  miles on it when I got the dreaded Over Drive shudder when it shifted into OD.  I was pretty worried about it based on every thing I had read about this issue on the different forums.  I went searching for an alternative that didn't involve replacing the entire transmission (simply don't have the money for a new trans).  I stumbled across a web site from AJ1E Superior Solutions, LLC that promised to fix the issues that Ford over looked with these transmissions and at a reasonable price no less!

     After doing some research and reading numerous reviews, I decided that I would give them a try.  I contacted Andy and ordered all the parts needed to complete the fix.  The parts arrived quickly and in new condition.  I called Andy again to ask about the extra o-ring's that were in the kit because I wanted to be sure that I didn't missing anything,  He said that the additional o-ring's were extras 'just in case' some of the others get damaged during installation.  I like the thought of not having to go and try and find new o-ring's if I messed one up.  This was great thinking on Andy's part.

     I sit down and read the instructions. Read them again, went over the process in my mind several times and then read the instructions again.  The instructions were excellent, by the way.  I determined that since I didn't have access to a vehicle lift, I would just use jack stands and a floor jack.  After getting the vehicle up on jack stands, I realized that there wasn't anyway that I could do it with exhaust in the way, so I removed the H pipe and the transmission cross member from the Explorer.  With the transmission tail shaft supported by the floor jack, I was able to move the trans around just a little bit and that helped with getting room for my hands.  Once all of that was out of the way, I set about removing the servos one at a time.  There will be a little fluid leaking out of the servo bores, but nothing more than a shop towel could clean up.

    I put the new servos in one at at a time with Sil-Glide applied to all seals on both the servo and the servo covers.  Then I put everything back on, exhaust... trans cross member.... you get the idea.  Just replaced everything that I had taken off.  I also took the time to adjust the bands since the procedures were in the instructions and it only took an additional few minutes.

    Well it was time for a test drive.  Almost all of the shudder was gone!  Damn it!  So I decided that since the fluid had not been changed (to the best of my knowledge), I would change the fluid and the filter.  With the new servos and fluid change cured all but an very rare and occasional shudder.   On the advice of a good friend, I decided to add a bottle of Lucas Transmission Fix after first draining the same amount of fluid out (don't over fill your trans - not good!).

   I am super pleased to report that we have put an additional 6500+ miles on it since the fix and it runs as good or better than it did when it was new.  That included driving in the south western deserts of the USA!

   I can't thank Andy at AJ1E Superior Solutions, LLC enough for having the idea to fix an issue that Ford decided to over look.  If you are having this issue, please check out his web site for the info needed to fix your shudder!

Thanks again,

Got a transmission... Real hot rods have three pedals!

I got an M5R2 out of an 89’ 5.0L F150.  It should do just fine behind my 302.  Now just need to measure and get my drive shaft.  Of course I will need a new yoke and from what I understand, this trans will use an AOD/C4 yoke.  That means the hunt should go quickly.