Sunday, August 20, 2017

The Rattle Trap

It has been a while.  It really has.  June 10th, actually.  That last post is over two months ago.  In case you thought I was slacking off, here's what happened.

My truck door has had a rattle in it every time I closed it.  There is a plate inside the door that sits at the top.  I tried to weld it into place a year ago, but it quickly came loose (I should have done it with the right settings, and also used inert gases, but was too lazy).  After another year of rattling around, it broke loose, and actually jammed a window closed (it fell underneath the window structure).  Knowing I now had to fix that, I tore the door apart.

I stuffed the rags into the door to cushion the window while I had it apart and to give me a little more space to work.  For all of you smarty-pants out there saying "but aren't the rags in the way of reinstalling the plate?", yes.  I had to remove the rags, remove paint from the tabs (inside and out) on both the door itself and the plate, clamp the plate in place using vice grips, and then reinstall the rags.

Once it was clamped into place (and the rags reinstalled), I grabbed my Horror Fright spot welder.  I had an odd tong from some previous in-tight-area work, so I re-installed that tong.  (It is a little more narrow, so it could fit into the door panel itself.)  I threw two welds onto two of the tabs, then removed the clamps, and welded those other tabs.  I did the welding a few times, just to make sure I had it nice and solid this time - I don't want to do this again.

Once done, because I had removed paint, I wanted to make sure my old little truck didn't rust away.  Do, I grabbed my primer, base coat, and clear coat rattle cans to finish my rattle solution.

Yes, that is gold paint on a white truck - it will be covered by weatherstrip. And yes, it is a worn out, white, dress shirt used to keep me from painting the window glass.

During periods of waiting for the primer to dry and the paint to flash, I headed to the lathe.  I had been asked by a friend if I could bend some 1/4" rebar into tent pegs for his Burning Man yurt.  I didn't have one of those fancy Horror Fright bending jigs, so I had to make my own.  I used a block of aluminum (to bend rebar? Yup!), and drilled a hole offset.  Then bored it out to a size that would allow an old, steel pulley to slip into.  Once I had a hole, I milled it out so the pulley could slip into it from the side.

This was more of a proof of concept to see if it would even work.  Well, it DID work, and worked for all of the bending needs for these. I simply put the rebar between the block and the pulley onto the press, then started cranking down.  Once it was far enough, I'd rotate it to the side and crank it even more.

I call it a successful weekend, though I am a bit worn out from running back and forth.

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