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The "Daily Routine" build and more - cars, house, and sundry funs

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On 7/9/2021 at 1:56 PM, Lockleaf said:

One of my close friends thinks I'm overreacting and that what I am seeing is merely a result of how blasted hot it is here right now.


Do you know any Subaru guys in the area you could ask if they are having similar issues? If it's a result of just "too damn hot" the gauge should go up high but maintain, not keep slowly creeping to the "buy a new engine" zone. 


When my shopmate's Suby needed head gaskets his car would just randomly peg the needle on hot days with little rhyme or reason as to when...


On 7/9/2021 at 1:56 PM, Lockleaf said:

I appreciate you helping me poke holes in my thesis 


That's my specialty.  😄

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I gambled yesterday on my commute home that my buddy was right about me over reacting.  So I let the car get hot.  noticeably hotter than I have allowed it to any time previous.  It did finally level off.  It got up to about 80% of the gauge, but then it stopped climbing.


This was at the top of the canyon, which is also the top of the very steepest part of the canyon.  It had leveled off and was no longer climbing in temp.

large.20210712_165654_HDR.jpg.06e39d29a1892e4275466a145fd1194b.jpg (900×1200)


However, that still seems risky high for a Subie.  High enough that I wonder if I would have overheated it with just the stock radiator still in it. Though truth be told, it could be that this solid aluminum radiator I bought is just cheap junk and no better than the stock one, so there is that as well.


I'm going to give water wetter a try, see if that is just hokem and snake oil, or actually helps a bit.  If that isn't enough, perhaps I will install an oil/air front mounted cooler and try to draw more heat out that way?  I just want to be sure that as we go in to the hottest and dryest part of summer, I can avoid blowing this thing up, but also have AC so I'm not exhausted and dickish by the time I get home from work.  


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For whatever it's worth, of the 6 (I think? lol) subarus I've had I've never had them get over the halfway mark regardless of outside temp or hard driving (and I beat the heck out of my old WRX) other than the GC impreza I had that burnt so much coolant it got air in the system and nearly overheated before I was able to make it to an auto parts store and get more coolant.


It being that high does not foreshadow good things IMO. Have you tested/replaced the sensor?

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No I have not tested the sensor, but I'm inclined to trust it.  At all other times but climbing that canyon in the heat, the gauge registers the same temperature it always has.

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Whilst dealing with my sob story of a Saabaru, I've also continued working on my wife's horse trailer.


I got the wall totally framed up and installed in the trailer.  You can't tell in these pics but I even folded a flange on the outer edges so it follows the shape of the framing rails I installed.  I used the sheet metal brake I made a couple years ago, which I haven't touched since the start of the quad cab project.  So that was cool 😄.








Next up, I took an existing saddle rack in my garage and converted it in to a hinged unit mounted in the tack room.  They swing in and out.








I used pin and barrel type hinges so that the rack can be removed from the tack room if useful to do so.  And I made 3 hinges, so it should be plenty strong enough.






Building this actually went better than I expected.  The hinges all align and swing pretty smoothly and I was able to figure out the angles for the pins to hold the rack itself so it swings right where I want it to.  However, the top saddle rack ended up being about 1/2 an inch too high for the saddle horns to clear the door, so I have to move that down just a bit.  


But it even works under full load!




I've also filled in the "window" I had created next to the tack door.





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Between general UGH, and other aspects of life, progress has been slow on the project front.  And the trailer is taking up about 95% of all my projecting time.  But it nears completion for this year.  There will still be a bunch more rust repair to do but that will wait until next year. I have other stuff I want to get done before winter sets in and I can't pull projects out of the backyard anymore due to snow.


Patched a big rust strip across the front of the trailer. 



Honestly it turned out like crap.  I'm pretty disappointed in how it looks finished.  I had tons of wind issues blowing away my shielding gas.  My welds turned to swiss cheese and had to be redone like 4 times, so its all warped.  


Gates to divide the horses were built and hung.  My wife built the bumper pads that are on them.  I reused stuff we had cut out of the trailer to build these.




The gates also needed some kind of locking mechanism so we didn't just keep chaining them to the wall.  So this is what we came up with.



So far they have held up, but I'm not sure if they will in the long term.


Added hooks to the lower saddle rack to hold the stirrups.  The stirrups would drag on the floor and I didn't like that.



I built a ghetto rod bender to make those hooks.  Pipe and a pipe wrench for the win.



Did the job well enough though. you just have to have plenty of extra stick out for it to work.


We installed a water tank, but I had to build a little stand for it.  The storebought stands are too big, but my wife wanted the hose connection off the floor some.  Pardon the suck photos.  We have a 5 foot hose that connects to it, which coils nicely and tucks inside the stand for storage.



Then I built this swing out saddle blanket rack.  Fully removeable from the trailer and locking.








Vertical rod on the right is the lock.  It swings over and a pin drops through the top to hold them all against the wall.  I'm actually really happy with how this turned out and how well it works.




Remove pin, swing to the side to unlock them.




I've also built and hung like 8 hooks built out of old horseshoes in there.  I need to weld up the old doors on this part of the trailer, build some saddle bag brackets, and add some helmet hooks.  That should wrap this up for the year.  I'm really hoping I can get this all done over this upcoming labor day weekend.  Then I can focus on some other stuff to prep for winter.

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I did also go help a friend with a barn find.  1967 Fairlane 500XL.  Been stored in this barn for about 23 years.  California Car, completely solid, but awesome patina.





It was a bit of a tight squeeze getting it out of the barn.  We had to remove the barn doors to get a couple inches more clearance.  Even then we scraped a layer of paint off one side of the barn door frame getting it through.  Car suffered no damage though.



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I also got to put my lift to really good use recently.  My friend gave me this Tahoe complete and running, but in exchange I had to pull the good trans out for him, and he gave me a trans lacking 3-4 gears.  The tahoe will be the foundation of an upcoming project, and the trans will get rebuilt as a part of that whole shenanigan.  




I don't have a trans jack, but I picked up a harbor freight transmission jack adapter off local classifieds for cheap, so we got funky.  Drilled some holes, installed some bolts and BAM, transmission hoist.






The arm is very near flat when the trans is at installing height so there is very little arc when moving up or down a little at that level.  This setup worked extremely well.  A little bulky to work around sometimes, but solid and easy to deal with.  Then we just lowered it down as far as we could and manhandled the trans off from there.


And I had to build a custom socket. We needed like a 1/4 inch more depth than a standard socket offered.  So here's that, because I want to.



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Big step, but not overly photographed.


I started shaving the old doors on the front of the trailer.  A little cutting and a little hammering, and the door became its own filler panel quite nicely.  then I also had to put in a smaller fill panel where the door latch lived.



I didn't get it hung quite square, but its thick metal so I just rolled with it.




Welded and ground back.  The left side you can see is overlapped and stitched.  The panel above this door was already lapped, so I decided it would look best if I just continued that line all the way down.  The top is fully welded shut and the upper half of the right side.  The bottom half of the right side, the trailer is pretty rusted out, so I need to put in a 2 inch wide patch down that before finishing the door stitching.  then hopefully just a bit of filler to smooth it over and done.


while doing this, I lit the trailer on fire.  There is tack in here, so I covered it with what I thought was a wool blanket, hoping that would be enough.  It wasn't.  It also wasn't wool.  I lit this thing on fire pretty good.  Luckily my intelligent wife bought some fire extinguishers recently and insisted one live in my shop.  I put it on the bottom shelf of my cart.  My friend yelled fire, and she yelled about the extinguisher, and I got it all put out.  No real damage done beyond a little charring on the bottom side of two saddles.  And my pride.  I think its time to invest in a real fiberglass blanket.


My wife had to completely clean and condition all 3 saddles that were in there, plus do a bunch of cleaning from the burned blanket and the extinguisher powder.  She was not best pleased with me that day, but luckily her sister came over and helped her get all that cleaned up.



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Lets ignore my own personal ignorance on the flammability of fiberglass and go with - I should buy an actual welding blanket.  Maybe I should just buy a big cow hide.  Leather is pretty hard to burn, right? 😁


But yeah, one of those harbor freight blankets is exactly what I plan to pick up soon.


One random note, those are very much NOT certified for plasma cutting. My friend cut one of these blankets right to pieces while plasma cutting 😄

Edited by Lockleaf
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I've had a few incidents while welding, and a fire will certainly raise your heartbeats-per-minute quickly enough...


I had an actual leather welding jacket for a while, and it does offer good burn protection, but the damn thing was hot, bulky, and hard to work in...



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24 minutes ago, Duncan said:

I've had a few incidents while welding, and a fire will certainly raise your heartbeats-per-minute quickly enough...


I had an actual leather welding jacket for a while, and it does offer good burn protection, but the damn thing was hot, bulky, and hard to work in...




I often wear a leather "bolero" when grinding and welding.  I just looked it up, I guess it is called a cape?  but it has snaps where you can attach another piece so its a full jacket.  Like this



I wear it the most when grinding.  I hate how when grinding I get spray into my inner elbows.  Makes me itch badly.  so I wear this thing.  Still hot, but would be much worse if I were wearing a full jacket.

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On 9/9/2021 at 5:14 PM, Lockleaf said:

I wear it the most when grinding.  I hate how when grinding I get spray into my inner elbows.  Makes me itch badly.  so I wear this thing.  


I usually wear a zip up hoodie in winter to stay warm, and often have to replace it every year. The old one gets demoted to this job.  😁

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