From the pasture; The valiant story of my '66 Valiant

kirk Sep 26, 2019

  1. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    So one day in March, a buddy had a tip about some VWs in a pasture that needed "saving" and he thought I was just the man to do it. So in spite of temperatures in the mid 20's and a glaring lack of common sense, I drove two hours into the wild. Once there, I met with the property owner who was a super cool guy. He had a couple Isettas, some pretty interesting aircraft and an extensive hovercraft collection. Yes, hovercrafts. He was selling cars off to get more hovercrafts, and while I don't understand the fascination, I can appreciate the like of something random to tinker on. I liked him immediately.

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    He was incredibly proud of this, and I told him quite frankly and in no uncertain terms how very much I WOULD NOT go up in that. He laughed. I didn't.

    From his shop I walked out back into the field to take a gander at the Volkswagens. To get there, you first have to walk past some oddities (of which none are for sale):

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    Which got me to the back, back where the VWs were kept. He had a pretty decentish blue '68 that I wanted immediately, but to get it I had to agree to take some other bastard VW children. Their story however is a tale for another thread.

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    While "negotiations" were hot and heavy, I countered by saying that I would meet his price "only if you throw in this Plymouth behind me". Now to be fair, I hadn't even looked at that Plymouth, didn't know what it was, or if I really wanted it. I just thought we needed more for the loot he wanted and thought I could make a buck or two on it. So when he said we "might could work something out on that", I was then forced to look at the Plymouth and see exactly what my foot, en route to my mouth, had possibly just purchased. Turning around, I instantly liked it.

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    For one, it looked super clean. Its a boxy little two door, and has a neat look. I like boxy little cars, and I can't afford a Nova, so why not? For two, as my hovercraft loving host began to tell me about the Plymouth, my want for it grew. He shared how it was a one owner car, purchased new by his Aunt in 1966, and powered by the "tower of power", slant6. The Aunt, Alene, drove it from 1966 until 1998 when she died. At that point, the faithful little Plymouth was relegated to a series of temporary resting spots (but never title transferred) before ultimately landing in the pasture with what is alleged to be a bent push rod. Adding insult to injury, the passenger rocker was damaged badly when being unceremoniously dumped in its vegetative resting ground.

    And there it sat, waiting. As the years went by, the tires went flat, then split, sinking its neat little 13" wheels into the mud where they began to rot. From there, Kingdom Animalia Order Rodentia moved in, and in short order.

    And there it sat some more. Through two decades of rain and neglect, culminating in this 25 degree day, and this star struck moron.

    So I bought it. (and the VWs, but thats a different tale)


    As the daylight failed me, I made arrangements to return for it on a day there was not 8" of standing water in the pasture. It would be nearly ten days before the rain would stop and I could get permission from him to return for it. I was at work when my phone chirped, and I looked down.

    "HEY I THINK WE CAN GET A CAR OR TWO OUT TODAY, CAN YOU COME UP?"

    Excuses were given to my boss, vacation hours taken, trailers obtained, work clothes donned, and away I went.
     
  2. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    When me and my buddy Parker arrived, our host suggested we take the closest cars, but with severe and inclement weather coming, I was only interested in freeing one car, the Plymouth. Strategically located at the bottom of the pasture, behind every other car, it waited. He was agreeable and we got started. One by one, using his tractor, some chains and a willingness to get muddy, we drug each of the cars to dryer ground, clearing a path to the Plymouth. It took over an hour and a half, as navigating a tractor through a quasi swamp while encumbered with dead automotive treasures can be tricky. Eventually, we made a sodden path to an awaiting freedom trailer. I did my best to air up the tires. The passenger side duo aired up and while damaged, managed to hold enough air to roll. The rear drivers was pretty much the same, other than leaking slowly around the corroded bead. However the front drivers wheel is badly ate up from being submerged in the mud, and would not hold air long at all. At this point I didn't even know if it would roll, so lets start small.

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    Taking great care to not damage any suspension or bumpers, I hooked up the chains. It was a marshy sucker down there. Once connected, I got inside to "steer" as my tractor power drug me backwards. We were very very careful not to damage the bumper or lift too high causing damage, as I read some bumpers are one year only. Not sure if these are, but just in case, doesn't cost extra to be a bit careful. The Gods of fortune were smiling upon us, as after two gentle tugs, all four wheels began to roll. Away we go!


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    Steering a dead Plymouth past dead farm implements, with one super flat tire and three soft tires, was kinda spooky, but we made it! Once out of the pasture, and standing on three and a half legs, I was able to better evaluate what I was working with. That rocker is pretty badly damaged, but it doesn't impact the door function at all.

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    Also, all his dogs were super cool.

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    I was pretty happy to have the original owners manual and associated paperwork. This little thing on the glove box door is interesting too.

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    With a little finesse, we got it loaded (had to keep adding more air to get more ground clearance over that trailer) which means I can get it into cover before the storms. I know this is going to need a ton of work, and I know I have a long hill to climb, but I am SUPER excited about it. To the point that I really wish I hadn't just bought that big ole jeep currently occupying shop space and all its assorted new parts. But I made myself a deal that I would get the jeep running first, and decide where to go with it from there. Either I'll set it free or roll it to the back to wait on some other day.

    I am slowly turning into that old man that is going to "FIX ALL DEM CARS SOME DAY". More to come Constant Reader, stay tuned.


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  3. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    When we last left the brave little solider, she was listing hard to port on two rotten, ruptured, rolling rubbers. Luckily for me, I get bored and need things to piddle with. One day and some elbow grease later, I get them cleaned up a bit.

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    The tires were crap, and the lips are heavily chewed, but just to have something to mount tires to, and stand on her own two feet, I think this will work! Time to raid the tire pile to see what 13" ones i have.

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    Pretty quickly, two craptastic tires and some rattle bomb black were applied. BOOM! I am roller mobile yet again.

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    While I was out there, I filled up the slightly crusty looking radiator, to see if it holds. Pretty sure it will need replacing at some point, but at least this way I know if it gets replaced sooner or later. Locking it up, I make plans to come back next weekend.

    Next weekend arrived, and due to the glorious weather, I decided to piddle around on the Plymouth to see what's going on. This was the first time I was able to actually lay hands on the car and see what I had. Over all, the body is very clean, but I haven't inspected the motor. Heck, I didn't even know if it would turn over. Doors open, hood up, tunes on. From jump I notice the radiator is still holding water! Basic win.


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    First thing I wanted to do was to check the push rods, as the guy I got it from said one was bent. Dunno, but lets dig in and check. Valve cover off, shows me that its black, but not sludged or gross. Fairly clean given the age of the car honestly.

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    I looked and rolled the motor over and everything I could think of, but couldn't see any that were bent. Weird. I already spent $6 on a box of push rods for this car, which seemed super cheap, so if I find something later, bam. Good to go. New Valve cover gasket, bolt everything back up. I'm sure I will be revisiting house de valve later on, but for today, that will do pig, that will do. Checking the oil, shows me that its amber colored, and is as full as it should be.

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    Taking the breather off, I see that I have one old single barrel Holley carb that almost assuredly needs a rebuild, as nothing on it spins or moves very freely. I spend some time lubing, cleaning and such till it at least moves around, for what I am about to attempt. I will either rebuild this, or replace it later, depending. From here I observe my "house battery" i keep around for dead automotive revivals, wont hold a charge. So I run to the local parts house for a battery and in doing so nearly set my truck completely on fire, AFTER picking up five gallons of gas, but extinguish it in the car wash and come back. I replace the rat chewed positive battery cable with a new one (negative cable is worn, but not badly. New one doesn't fit the bolt/hole in the block) install the house battery and check my lights.

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    I even have actual blinkers! I step on the brake pedal to check the brake lights, but the pedal is frozen completely solid. I mean like rock hard dont move, want brakes you cant haz no brakes because there is no brakes. Oh well. That single master cylinder and antiquated front drums were due for a rebuild anyway. Ill probably try to find a bolt on (read that as I don't fabricate) good quality disc brake kit for the fronts. Back to the 'lectrics. I have a dome light, dash oil light and buzzer when the key is in the ignition. Sweet. Time to set up my intricate fuel system.

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    Even has a squeezy bulb to prime it. Once the can builds pressure it feeds (typically my generator while camping) a steady stream of fuel. I'm not even sure the fuel pump works but here goes nothin.

    Turn the key just to check, not a damn thing. Not a buzz, not a grunt, not a nothin. Hmm. Channeling my inner caveman, I whack the starter with a hammer. I mean, cant hurt. Then (sorry for the audio):



    It spins!
     
  4. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Okay so it spins. Lets see what we are working with. I have plugs/wires/cap etc, but lets see what happens when I prime the carb and feed it fuel. Attempting to use the accelerator pedal, i feel a crunch and notice my heel sinks into the floor. Im pretty sure I know now what lurks under the pristine OG rubber floor mats, but lets not get ahead of ourselves. I open the carb and feed it a dose of fuel straight down the gullet. Now, when I crank the key it drags three times, then catches. Belching and snarling, the slant 6 erupted into life. Unfortunately for my bus, parked directly behind the prehistoric Plymouth, she shoots large gelatinous liquids out the tailpipe. Idling slowly, and erratically, like only a half dead vintage car trying to remember its rhythm can, she stumbles, threatens to stall, changes her mind, and continues to idle on her own.

    I can clearly hear something going on with the lifters, and much like a stubborn ..uh.. mule.., the carburetor is pretty hesitant to do a damn thing I would like it to do. What it really wants to do, is stay dead, the motor on the other hand, seems pretty eager to rejoin the free world.





    I went ahead and shut it down, before I damage anything I haven't had time to fully inspect. It does however "run" which gives me hope! Now I peak under the car, and am greeted with a big ole pile of rust flakes. (ignore the puddle, its unrelated. liquid from the heater hoses I disconnected to get the valve cover off).


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    I can't get under it far enough to see, but my hand tells me there is a big hole up there near the accelerator, and since this aint the Flintstones, its gonna need repair. I also unlocked the gas cap and took a sniff. That gas smells like the dead dinosaurs that made that fuel came back to life, climbed in the tank, died again and started rotting. It was RANK. As replacement tanks are only $100 ish, I'm pretty sure I'll not bother cleaning this one. Yuck.

    I'm not sure I made much progress, but I have a much better idea of what I need to do now. And its alive!*


    *Sorta

    To do:

    • Peel back vinyl floor and inspect the metal
    • Research brake options that include a dual res MC
    • Set valves?
    • Buy a fuel tank
    • Buy a fuel pump
    • Rebuild/Replace Carb
    • Replace the OG radiator



    Until next time Constant Reader, I ain't no Plymouth mechanic, but I play one on TV.


    Editors note: I also found a replacement bumper for this one year only car on one of the faceyspacey pages, and have it on the way. My front bumper is mangled so anything I found would have been better than what I had.

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  5. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Cool weather a few weekends ago, and a surplus of parts in my dining room all pointed towards two things. One, I should probably stop storing parts in my dining room. Except, with no one bitching at me about it, why should I? They compliment my bikes in there real well. Second, it did mean that I should probably get out in the shop. So i did!

    Under dark and stormy skies, I decide to revisit the Plymouth for a bit, which means you get a moderately enjoyable post to read.

    So when we last spoke, I was awaiting a treasure from the depths of booksypacey, a one year only '66 front bumper. I came home one day a month ago to a large surprise on the porch.

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    I bought this thing for what I thought was a song (since its not repopped, and having one redone is a fortune) shipped. I was really excited to see it. Once open, its nicer than I expected for the age.

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    Once it came in, I went ahead and ran out to the shop to pull the old one. Man this things beat in comparison.

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    You can clearly see where someone in the cars former life drove right into something heavy hard and immobile. It was bent to sh*t.

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    So that day all I did was disassemble the old bumper. Once off, I disassembled the jigsaw puzzle posing as bumper brackets and carried the brackets home to sand blast off 53 years of rust, dirt, road debris and general funk, then repaint. After a good solid blasting, came some primer, then Rustoleum! Much better!

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    Mounted up. Thought about doing something to the inside of that bumper, but I probably wont.
     
  6. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    So this weekend, I head back out. Opening the door, the Plymouth stares at me, mouth agape, as if surprised I finally came back to work. Close your mouth boy, you're attracting flies.

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    Once installed, it looks SO MUCH BETTER. I will have to do a bit of adjustment it appears.


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    I then moved to the real purpose of my trip out, to check my valves (more on that later) and drop the tank. I have a spiffy ass brand new one ready to go in. I lift and secure the rear, and climb under to release the tank strap and drop the tank. I had been soaking all the bolts ahead of time, so removal wasnt very bad. Once you lower it, you have to undo one fuel line, and one plug to the sending unit. I have been told to salvage the sending unit or at the very least the capture ring holding it in, as apparently the Chineese do not speak "Plymouth Fuel Sending Unit" and have been unable to re-manufacture one that actually sends you any real data. To drop the tank you also have to undo three screws holding in the fuel filler neck as well plus a vent line. All done, the tank drops free. I mistakenly breathe in and am immediately assaulted with the noxious odor of very very old rotted gas. Luckily the tank is empty, save the fumes. Gagging i drag it out and toss it on my tailgate for surgery. 36 brain cells die in the assault on my olfactory senses. RIP ye brave men.

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    A few tippy taps of the hammer and the locking ring swings free. I add it to the pile of things I need to sandblast and clean up at home. A little prying and I get my fuel sender out. Wow. Guess that is a lost cause too. Plus, the tank is rotted around the hole for the sender. Off to the nearest dumpster you go!

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    Off to the junk pile with tha lot of ya! So also super nasty and super corroded is the filler neck. I guess i can wire brush this clean maybe and soak it. Dunno, but the only one i found online was $75 on ebay. That buys a lotsa cleaner I think.

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    So since it looks like this Canadian made jewel will have to wait for another day to go in. Back in the box with ya!

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    So since I can't install the tank lets look under her skirt shall we? Don't mind me ma'am, I'm a doctor. I would snap my glove, but I don't wear them. Doesn't feel the same.

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    Well obviously everything under here is old. No rot, plenty of rust. I go ahead and lubricate up all the brake line fittings, shock bolts, etc. Im pretty sure ill just throw all the brake hardlines out and replace them anyway. I suppose now would be the time to find a gasket for that rear end, open it up and change the fluids as well. I don't think I'll replace the leaf springs, but i suppose if i wanted to now would be the time. ($99 per side)


    Now lets go see if i really do have a bent push rod like he said.


    Parts:

    • Rear Shocks
    • Brake Hardlines
    • Brake Softlines
    • Gasket for the axle
    • Fuel Sender
    • Fuel Tank insulation
    • Smarts to not adopt pasture projects
     
  7. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    So this as of yet unnamed resident in the House of Kirk was sold to me with the caveat, "Shes got'er a bent pushrod I figger." So who really knows? We all know that the people of Tribe Running When Parked and Clan of Wont Take Much To Get Her Back On The Road, know less than nothing about the cars they so willingly try to sell us for premium dollars, but want you to believe they do. So much so that I perfected the fool proof plan of dealing with them.

    Ignore everything they say.

    That and throw in bullsh*t too. "WELL THE VALIANT HAS ONE YEAR ONLY CHROMOLY PUSHRODS WITH A .06 CLEARANCE UNDER SPEC BY 30%"

    Then sigh real big like its such a problem you may have to drink later. (I mean you were gonna drink later anyway, but they dont know that)

    First and foremost I swap the plugs and wires with the recommended brands from some Plymouth forum. Dunno, took a bit, but they luckily all came out easily. I fed the dumpster six very brittle and very ancient plug wires, along with six soiled Champion plugs.

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    Valve cover off again, lets pull them one by one and see what we have. I have a box of them on standby just in case. In pretty short order, I see that yes, I do in fact have a bent one. Which is odd, because its pretty glaring, and I didnt see that the first time I had the valve cover off. Hmm.

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    She's bent pretty good Captain!

    All in all, I replaced four, with this one being the worst. One had a nick on the side somehow:

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    But every one of them was covered heavy heavy in oil gunk so i cleaned them each.

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    The very last one I pull out, clean, go to re install and TINK. Hit something. Try to re adjust, TINK TINK. What the hell? I peer inside, and there lays a bright, shiny lifter. Literally. I have to close one of my aging eyeballs to squint in, and add in a ton of light, but sure as sh*t, there it is.

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    Bizarre and something I have never dealt with. So i text Parker just to ask, and hes like "bullsh*t" and I'm like nope seriously, and hes like no way, and I'm all "yes way ted", finally he says, well get that big magnet on a stick and drag it out!

    *Facepalm*

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    Boom, toldja b*tch. Lifter. So with nothing else to do, I engage in a very strategic game of reverse Operation, wherein you try to put BACK the vital organs, instead of remove them. Takes some practice, because the center of the lifter isn't magnetic, just the outsides. About 12 min later, about the time my back starts to hurt and I get tired of Operation the game (much like my childhood) it slides home with a very rewarding *SNICK*. Just like that, I'm back in business. I re-install the last pushrod, tighten the valve train back down, and put the valve cover back on. My daylight is starting to fail, and the thunderstorms that have intermittently entertained me all day seem to be getting closer. Two loud cracks of thunder, and distant lightning remind me that im standing in a big metal building with metal tools, and I haven't eaten all day. Time to call it. I still need to set those valves, but that can wait for another day.

    Stay tuned for the next episode Constant Reader, as I yet again throw dollars down a well to try to revive a long forgotten automotive relic. When things get tough, do what I do. Repeat over and over: "At least it aint a BMW."

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  8. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    So I had the a long weekend off from work due to Labor Day which was glorious. So with time off, what did Kirk do?
    • Cook delicious meats
    • Sit on his ass
    • Any number of actual productive things that need doing
    • Spent time in a hot @ss shop tinkering on a derelict Plymouth

    And but of course, I decide to spend the day in the shop. I show up early, open up the doors, turn on the music and spend the first hour and a half just cleaning. After that, its Plymouth time. Since I had no idea what the brake system is even like at all, I want to get her up in the air and inspect-able. Upon stands you go, lemme get them wheels real quick.

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    Now based on its time in a pasture, I was assuming the rear drums would be stuck. Well that's a big nope. Wheel off and I bumped the drum with my shin, THAR SHE BLOWS.

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    This side, the drivers rear) doesn't look overly bad inside. The spiders I displaced were not happy, and they left behind their dead, but I care not for them! The drums look like warmed over and hammered poo however.

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    In addition to spiders, I also have my share of mud dobbers to deal with. Luckily i have a very surgical method of removing them, as to preserve their way of life.

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    So, sparing you the boring, drug out details, I redid the rear brakes. New shoes, wheel cylinders and all. I hate drum brakes with a white hot burning passion. The parts, the springs, the adjustments. So tedious. Yet, less tedious than a disc brake conversion, so I'll just shut up now. These brakes are tiny anyway, so they were relatively painless. Emphasis on the word relatively. Once the rear brakes were done (and while waiting on my hardline, master cylinder conversion kit from inline tube on eBay) I pulled the rear shocks. They might have had some life left in them, but I doubt it. They also look like they lived in a pineapple under the sea, so we can't have that either. They came off surprisingly easy, for their age. To the trash, and the dumpster says thankyee.

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    So shocks off, in an act that can only be described as having extra time on my hands, and not liking what i see every time I peek under m'lady's skirt, I decided to clean up the rear axle some. As was explained to me, repeatedly, this isn't a show stopper, its a survivor car, but that axle is pretty ugly. Lets see what a bit of elbow grease and some Rustoleum will do.

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    So I put my lil wire brush on my drill and buzzed all that crap off. For $2 at Harbor Freight, that little wheel is easy peasy. I like it better than my grinder with a wire wheel, because I could get it right where I wanted it to be.

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    It was about that time that the Super finished its stint in Parker's garage, and instead of bringing it back home, I took it to the Hangar. I did that because I really wanted to clean out my home garage, and bring the Plymouth closer so I could tinker more frequently. Once the garage was moderately clean (and I damn near gave my self heatstroke AGAIN) getting it done, I threw the wheels on, and loaded her up. To home we go!
     
  9. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Before heading off into the garage, wouldn't a quick wash be good? Of course! The only thing better than tinkering on a Plymouth is tinkering on a clean Plymouth, and much like that fat, sweaty relative everyone avoids at the family functions, my Valiant could benefit greatly from some soap and water.

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    Months of shop dirt and grime went floating down the drain (street). My neighbors, drawn either by the thumping, rhythmic sounds of 80's music playing on my tiny garage radio, or noticing the addition of a dead automotive relic wearing long expired tags to the neighborhood all came by to check it out. I would like to say that their comments were all positive, and that they didn't roll their eyes while glancing sideways at each other, but I also am not (contrary to popular belief) a liar. To say this was well received would be stretching the truth a bit, so lets leave it at that. This thing was over due for a good scrubbing, which I gave it, most enjoyably. I think once the time for spit and polish comes, I can pretty her right back up.

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    Clean and dry, its time to tuck baby away to bed. She seems impossibly long in my little tiny garage, but hey, you make due with what you have.

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    Unfortunately, once I had the car in the garage, all warm, snuggly and dry, had my game plan all worked out and had her back on jackstands, sans wheels, my house flooded. And not that "oh the toilet over flowed, darn it" type flooding, more the "MY DAMN WATER HEATER BLEW UP AND SOAKED EVERYTHING I OWN, TIME TO LIVE LIKE A HOBO IN MY OWN HOUSE!" type soaking. So because of the vast and extensive water damage, all my surviving possessions needed a place to live while the house was repaired. So much to the imagined vexation of my neighbors, the Valiant rolled back out into the driveway once more, and into the garage goes all i own in the world*. (*okay not quite but you get the idea)

    To be honest, I haven't been able or motivated to do much lately, since just getting to where my tools are is a HUGE undertaking and my house is a mess. That being said, I did finish the rear hard line and shock install. It did require the destruction of one of the hard lines, but I was able to get the little brass block off and cleaned up too so that's a plus. Arent wire wheels the best? Also, if you were considering the hard line kit from eBay (inlinetube) I highly recommend them. Came with instructions, the lines they send match each line nearly exactly, AND the main line is clearly marked where you are supposed to unbend, and shape it. Their communication was great, and while this kit wasn't overly cheap, I felt like it was a good value.

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  10. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    So one night, while laying on my couch (suspended by styrofoam blocks off the floor), drinking a bourbonish beverage, I began to search the market place. I have noticed that if placed on a chart, the line indicating items bought correlates heavily with the line indicating bourbonish beverages consumed. I may have to think about that a bit. While doing such, I found a set of wheels in my bolt pattern (5x4) not too incredibly far away, in brand new shape, with brand new lugs, and with brand new tires. I wasn't really planning on buying wheels at this point, but after watching the ad for several weeks, the price dropped low enough that a road trip was now in order. As per my usual, I asked Parker if he would like to go, and as per his usual, Parker said he would.

    Trucks were fueled, Parkers were grabbed, aways we go.

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    To occupy his time, my navigator Parker researched where the best eating places where we were headed, Malvern, Arkansas. He settled on a place called Keeny's, a local hole in the wall promising the best American fare around. Sounds good to me, because everyone knows road trips are all about the food anyway.

    Once we arrived, we met fellow Mopar enthusiast Dave, who had a pretty significant accent. And not in the Arkansas mountain people way, more yankeefied. Parker with all his usual tact asked where he was from and was told "wuh skaaaaaan·snnnn". Ah. That explains it. Super nice guy, and he brought the wheels. I was a bit confused about how they were hauled, but he was so nice it didnt matter. The Valiant now had some "bling".

    [​IMG]

    In addition to being the wheel bringer, Dave confirmed that Keeny's was the place to eat. Old man cooking great food in the back of an old Market. Sounds good, I'm in. Mopar stories were swapped, goodbyes given, onward to lunch!

    Keeny's, located off in a residential district, was accessible by roads and alleyways barely wider than my truck, and was just as I hoped it would be. Small, homey and smelled phenomenal. As you approach the restaurant, just in case the large letters telling you that you found the lunch time Valhalla were missed, is a vintage Coca Cola sign with letters as aged as its owner, revealing that yes, honey, you found the right place.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Mr. Keeny himself still works, cooks and greets you with a smile. His menus are done by the day, and on this day, we could have whatever we wanted as long whatever we wanted was catfish or a BBQ sandwich. We ate the fish and took the sandwich to go. You know, just in case we were in danger of starving to death on the four hour trek home. One can never be too careful.

    When I remarked that we came from Texas, and that the food was great, he dropped me a jaunty little wink and said "Well I know how Texans are, but we can make SOME stuff in Arkansas ya know?" I liked him immediately. If you ever find yourself in Malvern, Arkansas, you gotta stop by. Trust me on this.

    [​IMG]

    Back on the road, it began to rain, then Rain, then RAIN, progress was slow. Conversation lagged, BBQ sandwich smell filled the truck. We stopped for gas and such about the time the rain let up. Parked in the lot, like a beacon of light, was a Yuengling truck.

    [​IMG]

    Yuengling is apparently not available anywhere further west than Arkansas so Parker, resident beer connoisseur, lit out after the beer guy like a moth to a hot bulb. After his initial confusion, the beer man was super cool, and Parker bought enough beer that I thought we might need a Trans Am to run interference back to the border. I threw a couple in the bed for a photo op.

    [​IMG]

    Several hours later, I decided to have a snack and grabbed my sandwich. It was several hours older by that point, but still delicious. I wanted a cold Yuengling to wash it down, but since I am a rule follower, and was driving in the rain, I settled for a several hour old Gatorade instead. Responsibility, thy name is boring.

    Once home, I couldn't wait to bolt them up to see how they look. I like them! They are quite large, comparatively however, when compared to the stock 13" wheel/tire combo.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    It was about the time I was going to install the passenger side wheel that I realized I did not have left hand lugs for that side.

    [​IMG]

    Crap. Stocks back on, lugs ordered. BUT for that one brief shining moment, it looked great! Like a bit of old dead skin had been peeled away to show the bright pink new life beneath. These tires are a bit large, and may not make the final cut, but I will get them all mounted and see exactly what I am working with, when the lugs come in.

    So now we wait! That's my overdone update for now, Constant Reader. Here is hoping my house dries and the Valiant can move back indoors, so work can continue. Until next time, Confucius say "Man who neglect water heater maintenance is destined to sleep on couch."
     
    Fromfrontier2Xterra likes this.
  11. Muadeeb

    Muadeeb Bastard Admin from Hell Admin

    Messages:
    16,973
    Location:
    Dallas
    I will need to remember that. I can vouch for Fat Boys in Caddo Valley if you ever find your way up there again.
     
  12. BEEFY

    BEEFY I Smile when Gasoline Can Freeze

    Messages:
    2,895
    Location:
    Prince George, BC, Canada
    That is a great looking little car. Thanks for taking the time to post up its restoration.
     
  13. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin Super Moderator

    Messages:
    38,752
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Excellent prose as always. Much enjoy. Looks like a fun project.
     
  14. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas

    Damn! The gas station I bought Yuengling at was two doors down and across the street from that at a Valero. Wish id known!
     
  15. Fromfrontier2Xterra

    Fromfrontier2Xterra I bought a Taco Super Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    31,915
    Location:
    All over PA
  16. Richard

    Richard Bought an X Supporting Member

    Messages:
    146
    Location:
    Oregon
    One helluva post.
     
  17. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Yes!

    Thanks man!
     
  18. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Forgive me Father, for it has been six months since my last confession. I confess to thee that I have (hath?) been busy, and have neglected the required updating of my thread.

    Thou art forgiven my son, now do 12 Hail Mopars, and post pics.

    Deal.

    So one bright shiny day, however many weeks ago it was, I was in the shop, and decided I would finish the gas tank install at a minimum. So here we go! We were already still up on jackstands so that parts done. Hey baby, howya? Good to see ya, miss me?


    [​IMG]


    *insert wavy lines and sounds indicating a flashback sequence*

    [​IMG]

    Now since I have last updated you, oh Constant Reader, I have off and on attempted to clean this stupid filler neck. I ran pipe cleaners through it, wire brushes, everything known to man. Nothing. So I got frustrated and googled it. I found one on that magical auction site in the sky for $100, but I wasn’t quite bourboned up enough to pull the trigger on that purchase. Or maybe I was not quite so frustrated as to quit on the one I have just yet. Dunno. Maybe both. I mean it’s a smooth hundy plus shipping and I feel like I should exhaust all efforts first. So I put it on the ole watch list. This is important for later.


    [​IMG]


    So instead of trading a Ben Franklin for a piece of pipe, I decided to try some stuff I have had good luck with in the past, CLR. I filled up a bucket, and soaked this thing. Ran some through it, used some and the wire brush again.

    [​IMG]


    And guess what?!?!


    Not a damn thing, that’s what. Fuel filler said F U. I like being rusty, corroded and ugly. I refuse to change; to get clean. Take me as I am or cast me away it said, in its secret filler neck language. I chose the latter option and by way of a sweeping arm motion, I send him off to the nether recesses of the shop to reside for evermore. About a day later, I get an "offer" from that one auction place, and when I click the email, I see that I am being offered one sterling jewel of a Taiwanese filler neck fitting one derelict 66 Plymouth for 48% off. I mean that’s a pretty good coupon me thinks.

    So faster than you can say Direct Connection, I sent a presidential hit squad consisting of one Ulysses S. Grant and two George Washingtons over to rescue Capt. Filler neck. (They were wildly successful at it BTW). And unlike my wheels, I didn’t even have to make a drink first. Shipping was scheduled to take ten days, so I hopped over to RockAuto, ordered me a sending unit (with some other bobs n bits) and then ordered some gas tank felt paper, and a filler neck rubber gasket. I plan to be ready when it comes!

    Ten days to the day, this purty lil thang showed up on my porch, well packaged, dressed up and ready to go. Well worth the money.


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Being made in Taiwan seems to be a bit of a downer, but let's reserve judgement until we assemble, hmmm?

    Before the weekend came, everything else I needed showed up, and I made plans to head to the shop, which brings us back to the beginning of the story. Are you keeping up? You are? Good. Flashback over.

    First thing I did was make sure the fuel line was clear. Mo gas, mo air, mo crap sprayed out. That line is clean, so let's move on.

    So I kinda got clowned by my buddy when I bought the actual fuel tank pad instead of just using some cast off tar paper, but since this was like $18 and I didn’t have any cast off tar paper, and I didn’t wanna go bumming around for cast off tar paper, and I had $18, I didn’t worry about his opinion much. Also, Detroit Muscle was easy to deal with and shipped quickly. Here it is lying "in place" prior to glue. Fit pretty well, and is notched where you need it to be. I had to lay it out in the sun for a while so it would quit its rolled up ways. Other than that, no issues!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Quick note, the aftermarket ring that comes with your fancy Chinese fuel sender is made of grade A hot stinky garbage. It was too small, didn’t fit in the hole, barely fit around the fuel sender, and is 100% effective at ONE THING, and that’s pissing me off. So if you feel the need to be pissed off, and don’t have a ready target, buy (Edit: don’t buy this, ever) one and smash it with a hammer. Twice. So I, having the brains to keep the old one, walked over, put it on the wire wheel and, for no reason, painted it.

    Now we in bidness!


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Sender goes right back in like its supposed to when you use the correct part. Funny that. So using the powers of my knees, minimal big swears and only a pinched finger or two, Madam Valiant of the isle of Plymouth gets the gaping hole in the rear filled with one shiny fuel tank. And it fit perfect!

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2020
  19. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Up top, our aforementioned Taiwanese filler neck, coupled with all the appropriate (and new) gaskets slides on in like new money. And its shiny! Shiny is always good, right? Dunno.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]



    About that time, a "hoodlum" buddy of mine showed up in his more door Chevrolet. I don’t think he was impressed by my lil Plymouth, but he appreciates my efforts in automotive tomfoolery.

    [​IMG]



    After he "chebbied" his way out, I decided to move on to the next project, pulling the interior. I have known the floors will need repair, as a couple decades in the Oklahoma mud are not conducive to solidity. So with my fuel tank situation in and plumbed, I started removing stuff inside, slowly and well documentedly (I don’t think that’s a word).

    [​IMG]


    So, seats out. Everything unbolted and came apart nice. Rubber floors aren’t bad, I dunno if Ill go back with those eventually or if I will buy carpet. Time will tell. For now I just wanna see what rust I have and what its gonna take to get right. Fearing the worst, I continue to dig in.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Now the rears aren’t so bad. They have minor holes that I can patch, once I clean and POR-15 the whole thing. Not worried about those in the least.

    [​IMG]


    The fronts on the other hand, BOY HOWDY. Remember me crowing around how the car had barely any rust, and "Look at Me, I Is Rust Free"? Yeah. About that, all the rust that wasn’t in the rockers or other places decided to run and hide under my mats. Knock knock, who's there? Rust. Rust who? RUST ALL UP IN YO FLO.

    Great.

    If we were using a highly complex, highly scientific scale, my front floors would go to Nigel Tufnel's 11.

    (Ill wait for a couple of you to google that. You back? Good. Lets continue.)

    At least this venture did help me track down some of the Valiant's lineage, as this has to be Fred Flinstone's car, as this one, and the one he so famously is seen leaving work in, have similar floors.

    *insert large sigh*

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    At least the invasive, cancerous, floor eating rust avoided the accelerator pedal mount, so theres that.

    [​IMG]


    So there are several things in life I'm good at. Making people laugh. Eating French fries. Finding and adopting derelict cars, and forgiving (yeah, mostly) mine enemies to name a few. Two of the NUMEROUS things I suck at include repairing and floor pans. I haven’t the foggiest Idea how to weld in floors. BUT because this car is a survivor and won't ever be a show winner, I feel like this is a good one to learn/practice on with only ALLLLLLL of you to see. So, at some point, you will be able to watch me trim all those floors out, cut up some new metal, and botch the sh*t out of welding it back. So be it. So now that I reached a stopping point, I vacuumed out all the debris, and made a mental note to order floors from ABS when I got to work the next day.

    (Little did Kirk realize, he had inadvertently given himself a sinus infection working in a car with crap floating around without his respirator on. After this day, he would be incredibly sick and miss two days of work, and still have the cough and sneezies for three weeks)

    Flooring out, seats stored, last thing I wanted to do that day was pull my radiator so I can have it rebuilt. I found a localish guy who rebuilds radiators for classic cars, and for about the same money as buying a new shiny one, I can have the original repainted and recored. It seems true radiator shops around me are a dying art, so Im hopeful. Removing it was no issue, other than the long petrified coolant hoses that required damn near a hacksaw to remove. Also, the thermostat housing is horribly chewed up, but a quick glance at RockAuto shows they have them fairly inexpensively with the thermostat and seal. Im certain that’s how Ill go.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  20. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Overall, the radiator is in about what shape you would expect a fifty-four year old radiator to be in, if said radiator was stored under the sea. Its just old and in need of some love. I like the idea of keeping the original one vs putting in a new shiny one. Hope that doesn’t bite me in the ass later, but for now, here we go, a couple before photos.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]



    Now as I wrapped up, and began to sniffle (although I didn’t know what was coming) I looked back at the Plymouth and thought that in true lieutenant Dan form, she aint got no LAHAIGS. So lets fit some for giggles.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Man those look cool. Im going to have to switch the larger tires out, but I do like the look. Well that’s all for now, Constant Reader. I apologize for leaving you for so long. I hope you forgive me, I never meant to do you any harm. I hope that I can post updates more often, depending on how long it takes for my floors to come in and my radiator to return. In the meantime Ill finish my brakes and tinker on the small stuff.

    Bring on the warmer weather!
     
  21. TheCrabby1

    TheCrabby1 Skid Plates Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,246
    Location:
    Burtonsville, Md
    How long we gotta wait ? :mad: This is worse than the old Heinz ketchup commercial . An-tic-i-pa-tion it's making me wait LOL
     
    TerryD and Richard like this.
  22. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin Super Moderator

    Messages:
    38,752
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    I love reading your updates. They're wonderful.
     
    TheCrabby1, kirk and Richard like this.
  23. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Thanks man!
     
  24. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Floor pans from AutoBody Specialties arrived, in a very beat up box, with corners of the pans sticking out all over. I get that its not easy to box and ship pans. Especially pans of this size. AND I get there are not a lot of A body floor pan options, so I am not complaining.

    Much.

    BUT.

    When you charge extra to box them up, you'd think you could at least pretend you didn't stuff them in a box, throw them down a nine floor mail chute into the awaiting arms of percussively inclined gorillas who play intricate drum solos on them before letting a kangaroo power kick the box out the door. Luckily, the pans were only bent on the corners, allowing me to easily straighten them, so that's good. They are MUCH larger than the floors in my car, which I assume is due to them fitting many different cars. All that means is I'll get to practice my trimmin, and I would rather have too much metal than too little. I hope to start old floor removal this weekend, after mucho estudio.

    I think old floor removal will be easier than trimming the new floors down to fit in the holes, but since I can't weld (sometimes people say they "weld for sh*t", well I weld worse than that) I don't want to make big mistakes I can't easily correct. I say that to say this, progress will be slow, as I will learn as I go.

    You know what they say, "Measure nine times, step away, come back, measure again, delete that line you just made because you really aren't sure that's the correct measurement after all, measure again, remark it, right were you marked it the first time because you should just believe in your self, cut once.

    Well they don't always say it just like that.

    But I'm saying it with this.

    More to come!
     
  25. TheCrabby1

    TheCrabby1 Skid Plates Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,246
    Location:
    Burtonsville, Md
    Don't take too long ! You know withdraw set's in after a while , especially when you only got Jim's Post Whore day at Amtrak to read !!!!!!
     
  26. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    ACT 1 SCENE 1



    FADE INTO SHOT OF PLANET EARTH

    CUE VOICE OVER


    In the dark, dystopian future of 2020, on planet Covid-19, the world was burning. (I mean it is Texas, and summertime) People were wearing masks (well sorta), taking food to go and hoarding toilet paper. The world came to be run by the controlling class of "essentials" working dozens of hours a day, with no time for anything else, your author included. Projects lag. Weight is gained. Frustration mounts. The more fortunate people sat at home and collected $600 extra a month to play Xbox. It was a confusing time. It was a bleak time. A time in where there were but two glimmers of hope.

    To go cups of magic party liquor, and one patient '66 Plymouth Valiant. Hi again Mr. Valiant, good ta see ya.

    [​IMG]

    Here we continue the Valiant's, Valiant tale.


    When we last left our intrepid explorer, he had just finished stabbing a jewel in the Valiant's butt and turned his attention towards the floors. Let's join that story, already in progress.


    DISSOLVE TO:

    INT SHOP. RISING SUN REFLECTING ON FRONT BUMPER;
    '66 PLYMOUTH. RUSH - LA VILLA STRANGIATO PLAYS.



    As you remember, the front floors of my Plymouth were much akin to the automotive version of swiss cheese and were about as solid as a water bed during a 1970's era coke fueled orgy. Much like the memories of those days, these floors gotta go.

    (editors note: Coca-Cola, and the author was like 5 in the 70's)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]



    Pro tip: For this job you will need a very precise set of premier tools.* This will guarantee your absolute success!** Get on my tool level.***

    *not premier tools

    **fake news

    ***I have no level. I don't honestly know what that means.

    [​IMG]


    Before we go any further, you should know, I am not a professional. I do not play one on TV. I don’t even watch professional people fix cars. I cant even spell car. So that being said, Immaboutta (that a word?) do my best. You don’t like it? See the lady up front for your money back on your way out.

    BUT

    I do like tips and constructive criticism. Okay anyone left? Couple back in the corner? Good. Return your seats to the upright position, and fasten your belts. It’s a short flight, but may be entertaining.

    [​IMG]

    So gathering all my nerve, and some new cut off wheels, I started the slow, arduous process of removing the old metal. Some of it came just right on out. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy. Mostly because it was falling out already. I didn’t so much as cut it out, as basically assist nature in removing it.

    Ill be honest, most of it was me being worried about cutting out too much, so I cut out too little, then went back and cut more. I probably could have been a bit more brazen with my old floor removal, but several things occurred to me at once.



    · I like my fingers, yes, all ten.

    · I also like my eyesight.

    · Why the rush?



    So with those three things in my head, I continued to plug away most of the day removing the floor. The tough parts came when I had to break, bend, chip and chisel the metal off the cross member and supports. That stuff did not wanna give up the ghost. But I am persistent. My teachers would say stubborn. My ex-wife would say bullheaded. (And other unmentionables. – Ed.)

    But they aren’t here, so I care not for their opinions. I talk too much. Time for pics in no particular order.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    In my quasi haste, I nearly cut that. I came very close.

    [​IMG]

    After several hours of patient cutting, trimming, measuring, cutting again, swearing and sweating. I had a hole I was proud of.

    *insert off color joke here*


    Time to repeat the process on the MUCH worse drivers side. Although, argument could be made that its much better, since there is less floor to cut. I may have to think on that one a bit. For the sake of brevity, lets just fast forward a bit, eh? One thing of note I should mention is my oft mentioned hatred of bees, wasps, any form of flying @sshole. Well once again, I found myself having to rehome this precious, delicate species. I dunno how they even got in there, then it hit me!

    I don’t care.

    Out they go and destruction continues!


    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]

    Hmm. Trim around this or remove and use the new metal with new holes? Thinking its gonna go bye bye.

    [​IMG]


    Well the day drew long, I got hot and tired, and I took less pics. I think you get the picture. Many apologies. But when its dusk and a quick glance over your very dirty shoulder makes the Plymouth resemble a floating spaceship plus you then begin to observe an odor best described as rust and armpit singing an off key duet, its probably time to go.

    So as I decided I didn’t want to attend this hellish opera any longer, I closed up shop and went in search of a much needed a shower and a cold drink. Possibly simultaneously. That means tomorrow is another day, chock full of opportunities to mess something up on a Grand Mal scale. Can't wait.

    Until then Constant Reader, until then.

    [​IMG]

    TRANSITION TO OVER HEAD SHOT OF DUSTY PICKUP LEAVING SHOP, ELBOW ON WINDOW SILL. FOLLOW FROM A DISTANCE, GAINING ALTITUDE. FADE OUT.

    END SCENE.

    Join us tomorrow as our intrepid explorer woos the alien women on planet DEMDAMNSHINYNEWFLOS.

    Next on: "One broke fool and his Plymouth!"

    Only on Espn 8 ~ The Ocho.

    [​IMG]
     
    Xterrorista, BEEFY, Zack. and 2 others like this.
  27. TheCrabby1

    TheCrabby1 Skid Plates Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,246
    Location:
    Burtonsville, Md
    Fred Flintstone would be proud to see you using the brake's from his car....... :) We'll be on edge until the next installment !!


    ""edit""
    That would be his FEET'S thru the floorboard for you youngin's !
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2020
  28. Brunnie

    Brunnie First Fill-Up (of many) Supporting Member

    Messages:
    265
    Location:
    Colorado Springs
    Is that a set of Harbor Freight "Death May be Imminent" jackstands I see??? :eek: :eek: :eek:
     
  29. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    I really like the orange ones. I havent had any issues at all yet. And i still have the recalled grey set. Because the red ones that replaced the recalled ones, were recalled as well. I may go trade them in on in store credit for something else, but not the orange ones.
     
  30. Brunnie

    Brunnie First Fill-Up (of many) Supporting Member

    Messages:
    265
    Location:
    Colorado Springs
    The orange ones were recalled as well. :D
     
  31. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    No kidding? Ive had those for 15 years or more without issue. I think ill just keep carrying on. Haha
     
  32. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Alright, time for another update. Albeit a small update, and not particularly well written, but hey it still counts right? I mean cmon, its hot out, and im lazy. Fine.

    So once I got two large gaping holes in my floor, there was no turning back unless I could figure out some way to rig up some pedals and such, I needed floors. So I headed out one morning to start the long and slightly scary prospect of trimming up these new shiny floors, and to fit them (more or less) into the car. The first thing I did was to clamp the new floors to a handy little stainless steel rolling table i liberated from a derelict (and more than slightly terrifying) dentist school about ten years ago, when i was into exploring abandoned places. So feeling pretty smart, I clamped it down to give me a good handy place to work in the open.

    [​IMG]

    What I actually managed to do was blind myself when this super large chunk of reflective material decided to reflect back the 115 degree Texas sun, and nearly burn off my finger prints when i tried to touch it.

    Plymouth floor 1
    Kirk 0

    After a slight adjustment away from the sun, I got started. Measuring. Marking. Measuring again, and again and again. I would like to say I'm kidding about the number of times my OCD made me go back and verify my last measurement, but, I cant. It was about that bad.

    All this trimming has me feeling like I’m in the Salon of Oz. Anyone remember that scene where they get ready before they see the Great and Powerful Oz?

    Snip Snip here, snip snip there
    Working without pause..
    That’s how we keep you in repair, in the Merry Old Land of Oz.

    Hmm. Maybe the heat is getting to me.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I did find that a towel over the biggest part of the metal kept the migraines at bay, and there were no fires started. I did however find a new tool I really like, that took the sharp, finger removing edges off the metal. This thing is gold!

    [​IMG]

    Okay in all fairness, I did manage to (yes even after measuring so many times) short the passenger pan, but the drivers went in perfectly. Guess its true, you do learn from your mistakes. And boy aint I making plenty.

    [​IMG]

    Okay so after about a half day of trimming and fitting, I had two big pieces that fit my holes real well.

    (insert drum Sting here, see also: ba dum tiss )

    So like I said originally, I am no pro. I did the best I could with the floors, and my borrowed welder, and thinking that anything im about to do was better than I had, I got started.

    Last chance to get out and get your money back.

    Still with me? You are? Well good! I am not to blame for your future displeasure however. Here we go, in mostly fast forward.

    I did have to cut some extra off this passenger side, because it was already bad, so hell, why not. From there I was able to dab in some extra as I went around.

    [​IMG]

    A little grinding later:

    [​IMG]

    Then the drivers side:

    [​IMG]

    After quite sometime later, I sat back marveling at the new floors. Not half bad! I mean, nothing to write home about of course, but like they say, "baby you shoulda seen what I started with." Dunno who says that actually, but I felt like it fit here.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    WHEW

    I am not a welder. I do not play a welder on TV. I never wanted to play a welder, and the most experience I have ever had was stick welding at the family farm on random things. This is definitely not that. It was at this point that my sun blind, welding weary, covered in flakes of metal and dirt ass decided to go home. Tomorrow we seam seal and get ready to paint the floors!

    Until next time, remember that every step forward, no matter how small, is a step forward. With this car it feels more like a weird salsa dance, swinging wildly all over the place, than actual steps forward, but hey, if it was easy, I guess everyone would try to work on old derelict Plymouth's in distress.
     
  33. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin Super Moderator

    Messages:
    38,752
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    You should write more. About anything. I'd read it.
     
    Richard likes this.
  34. TheCrabby1

    TheCrabby1 Skid Plates Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,246
    Location:
    Burtonsville, Md
    ^^^^^^^^^^^ yup , what Prime and Jay said !!! :cool:;)



    If you kept a yearly journal and pulled all funny morsel's out and webbed them on ur own site you'd have a decent following from right here . X.N. member's get a free pass, all other's Pay Per View if you drive a jEEp it's double""""""""""""""""""
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2020
  35. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Alright, so the next day after my welding/grinding endeavor, I would love to tell you I busted right back and went back to work on the Plymouth the next day. I would like to, but that would be a bold face lie. So what I DID do, was talk to some old timers at a body shop near by about seam sealers, do some googles, and drink a bourbonish beverage. All in all it was quite enjoyable.

    Now one thing you may not know about me (and may not care) is that I have bought a couple (numerous - Ed.) things while enjoying bourbonish beverages, to include a set of wheels in a far off state (see my trip to Arkansas for Cragars, this post) and a 4wd Nissan Xterra.

    Don't ask.

    But this time, I was super comfortable in my purchase, even though it cost me $44 and showed up damaged. Hmm. Damaged things in the mail seem to be what Im best at getting. However, I was told this was the absolute bees knees, baby. And even though I hate bees, I ordered it. Took a week to arrive, with the big ole hoss kick in one side non withstanding, it was still sealed and ready to go.

    [​IMG]

    So a coat of recommended automotive primer, and a liberal coat of seam seal (top and in some places, bottom) later, I was in bidness! What an easy day! Paint! Spread! Take pics! Go home!

    May your efforts all be as easy as this day was.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  36. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Now the very next day, I went back! Hard to believe aint it? Yep, thought so. Seam sealer and primer dry, now its time to unleash the big dogs.

    [​IMG]

    Now lots of people believe in this product, that product, etc, oh Masterseries is the best, yadda yadda. For me, POR15 is the greatest rust encapuslator I have ever used, hands down. The problem is, that POR15 is permanent. (And $50 bucks a quart, but I digress)

    But Kirk, that’s what we want dummy. Permanent rust proofers!

    Yeah, but not on your hands, arms, and forehead. Forehead? Yep. Once I was lying under a car, doing my rust encapsulating thing, when a mouse ran by. I jerked, hit my forehead on the bottom of the VW I was sealing, BAM. One black, permanent smudge on my forehead. I literally had to take light sandpaper and get it off. Then go to work, and listen to a buncha silly asses who think they are super funny, asking me how I got a rug burn on my forehead. Nyuck nyuck nyuck. Go play golf or something, I got work to do.

    Hoping to avoid a forehead smear, and the subsequent mockery this time, I gathered up again, a very very specific set of high end specific tools*.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    *well they get the job done, anyway

    Not pictured are my goggles, respirator and throw away protective suit. Now another thing I use pretty frequently, and catch hell for is this, the fiberglass mesh. I usually use it over areas with pin holes, and have had absolutely wonderful success. In case anyone wants to copy my hillbilly ways, what I do is put the POR15 out, press the mesh in, and coat it again. When it dries, I coat it again. Then I coat the bottom. Once it dries, it's hard like steel. I've used it before and I'll use it again. It's not stupid if it works, and this works great if you can't, or don’t want to replace the floors because it's just a buncha little holes. Trust me it works.

    [​IMG]

    So after a stiff brushing of the whole floor, then a very thorgough vacuuming, its time to get started. Once you start rolling this stuff out, you can't really stop, and take your gloves off, etc. You gotta commit and get it done. So I made sure I took a leak first, got a swing of water, scratched my nose and everything else I needed to touch before I was wearing this stuff. Away we go!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Covering pinholes.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

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    [​IMG]



    I also laid on my back and did the bottoms, everywhere I could reach. By this time, I had decided that maybe my respirator wasn’t doing as well as I thought, as my head was swimming and I was pretty sure I was seeing things. I climb out carefully, because my bad ass Clorox gloves are coated, and my paint roller is used up. But it's coated, coated again, and coated well. If this rusts again in my lifetime, I would be realllllllllllly surprised. It’s the most solid thing on my car I'm pretty sure. And I'm proud of how they look. Why you ask? Hides my shiatty welds, and my stellar grinding. Now, looking at my floors, you would think I was a damn professional. I mean, probably not, but its good enough for the girls I go with.

    Between the heat and the fumes, I may be delirious.

    Gloves off, respirator off, suit off, all into the trash! Now to leave that to cure, so I can later reinstall the interior. Maybe. My back seat cover is pretty poor, so I need to research that, or find me a snazzy Mexican blanket. Haha

    Until next time constant reader, be careful what fumes you inhale in the shop, because this unicorn standing in the corner eating a pastrami sandwich and barking at me is an asshole. I don’t wish that one anyone.

    Also, can you get a DWI on paint fumes? Asking for a friend.
     
  37. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin Super Moderator

    Messages:
    38,752
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Bwahahah!
     
  38. Newb

    Newb Test Drive

    Messages:
    35
    Location:
    Charlottesvile, VA
    This thread is gold! Thank you allowing us to ride along. I was admiring your jackstands. Even commented to the wife that my jackstands looked cheap compared to yours. Then I saw this:

    Had a great laugh!
     
    Fromfrontier2Xterra likes this.
  39. Xterrorista

    Xterrorista Skid Plates Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,401
    Location:
    Aurora, CO
    Yea dude, I don't even care that this was my grammas car and I hated it. I wanna tune in anytime I see a new chapter's been written. I'm with the boss man, I'd prolly read anything you wrote about.
     
    kirk likes this.
  40. kirk

    kirk I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone. Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    18,230
    Location:
    Allen, Texas
    Well it has been a little bit since I last updated you, oh Constant Reader, so let's take a quick jaunt down Valiant Lane, okay?

    As you may or may not remember (it's been quite a bit since this Valiant effort began) the interior in my car as it was delivered to me, by me, was quite poor. The original interior was both ruptured and covered-ish in some crazy green colored cover. Said cover was dirty, and covered in poo de la Ratta, causing me to avoid it like the literal plague. Felt weird to the touch. Like a microfiber towel on a callused hand weird. Are you not familiar with that skin crawling sensation? No? If you rubbed a microfiber towel on my face, I would literally admit to killing President Kennedy decades before my birth to get you stop touching me with it.

    *shiver*

    Thank whatever you consider a higher power if you don't feel the same way i do about it, and let's revisit, shall we? I think we should.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Ooh no.



    [​IMG]

    Oh that’s just nasty.



    [​IMG]

    This backseat is does not look conducive to snuggling with the honeys. I mean, I don’t plan to honey snuggle in here, but I like to keep my honey snuggle options open. I'm kinda wise like that.

    So the plan here is to attempt to re assemble the interior. When I made my big boy birthday list, I asked for a new carpet kit, some seat covers, maybe a hemi swap. What I got was a chicken spaghetti dinner and a hug from my mamma.

    Honestly, I think I came out on top. I think the overall budget for this "build" is more money that jingles vs money that folds, and my jingling pocket money and doesn't include the costs for interior revitalization at this exact moment, so let's just see what I have.

    The vinyl floors are still in pretty decent shape, so with a good solid cleaning, they are going back in.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    There is one 50c piece sized hole on the passenger side, but two things sort of negate that as a negative.

    · Floor is black below, so it should blend in

    · I honestly don’t care.



    [​IMG]

    I may have all the seats done at some point, but since we are largely (read that as completely) immobile, first, let's see what's under the super gross seat covers. Maybe I can save them. Maybe they will look good! Maybe it's Maybelline. So since the seats are out currently, I plan on using my super high tech, extremely mobile, wildly expensive workbench (Editor's Note: It's the tailgate of the truck). Once the dusty, baby shiet colored seats were flopped out on the workben..tailgate, I started snipping away (careful now, careful) at the old cover. It immediately began to shed a sh*t ton of fibrous materials that probably arent made of brightly colored asbestos but could be, and since I am prone to sinus infections, and coughing/sneezing in public these days may result in a fist fight, back into a mask I go.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    This seat is brought to you by the letter "W" as in "who the hell used 987 hog rings on the back seat bottom?" 987 hog rings that then got extremely used to being where they were, and quite reluctant to release their hold on the long dead remnants of this cover. One by one I snipped, unbent and removed each hog ring while trying to not damage the vintagely fresh OG seat cover below.

    Tedious? Brother you don’t even know the half.

    But the results were worth it!

    [​IMG]

    I'm suddenly pretty happy who ever decided once upon a million years ago to add crap seat covers over OG goodness did it, because so far, this ain't bad! I can use it. Time to work on the fronts and install.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    They are just as decent as the rest of the car, which aint saying much, I admit, but my pocket book is very excited. Vinyl floor in, 345 tiny screws and trim in.

    [​IMG]

    Now this is the point that I tell you I did splurge and buy a seat cover for the rear upper. I wasn’t planning on it, but I was pretty stoked that gas station I stopped at for Gardettos and Powerade on the way to my shop ALSO sold seat covers in the exact size for my Plymouth. That original one had ruptured from the sun, and was spilling stuffing out. It also wasn’t honey snuggle quality, but this new one totally is. I mean, at least its good enough for the girls I go parkin with. I carefully removed the old green cover (another 987 hog ring pains in the ass later) and installed the new. I might have a second career as an upholsterer, you just never know.

    [​IMG]

    I mean, look, it even has fancy fringe on the bottom, is the right color palette and everything. Plus it came with a coupon for 15% off my next purchase at Ernesto's Taco Emporium. (I'll be honest here, Ernesto's was more "converted school bus" than emporium really, but hey, chase your dreams by staying mobile so the health department never knows where you are I always say.) A seat cover and a discount on school bus made tacos? Bargain at twice the price.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Imma be honest, I'm pretty damn happy with the way it turned out. Worn? Yes. Free? Mostly yes. Better than it 'twas? Yup. Good 'nuff? Hell to the yep.

    Well that’s all for today ladies. This feels like an honest days work, my right hand is still folded up like a lobster claw from holding pliers all day, and I am getting ever closer to being road worthy (I hope). I just wanna drive this thing before I die. I feel like I earned it. Sorta. The next big step for me is to finish the brakes, and tackle the engine bay. As you recall, I had her running once (albeit on a fuel can, and roughly, and a million years ago) so surely I can make magic twice!

    I am now off to ice my right hand. I think a cup will fit nicely in it, you know, to hold the ice for the cramp. And i mean, if i have a cup and ice already, shouldn't a little coke be in there? This is thirsty work. And I do feel a bit parched. And I mean lets be honest. What is a bit of coke and ice with out just a smidge of whiskey? Uncivilized, thats what. And I dont want to ever be accused of being uncivilized. So I will. You know, for science.

    Tune in next week (well, that might be ambitious) when Ole Kirky tackles finishing the brakes and fits his shiny wheels!
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2020
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