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Generator rebuild
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The Start

 

Day 31

New wiring for the garage 50 amp 220vac. I needed to run a wire from the main breaker panel to the garage a distance of about 100 feet.  The first 25 feet are in the basement so they were no problem. The next 75 feet out to the detached garage  should be run under ground  but this is not possible in February. I ran the wire above ground in a conduit and I will bury it in the spring when the ground thaws.

 

Day 32

I finished the electrical work by installing a sub panel in the garage and a 50amp outlet for the welder. What welder you might ask. A new Miller 180 Tig welder I bought in partnership with my brother. 

Day 33

I went to the welding supply store to pick pick up a tank of argon gas for the tig welder. I also purchased some 1/16 in filler material and some tungsten electrodes.  Many welding web sites I have visited recommend a gas lens for the tig torch so I got one to use with the 1/16 electrodes. When I explained to the salesman I was new to tig welding he gave me some very helpful pointers and advice.

Day 34

I spent today trying my hand at tig welding.  It is very different from the mig and stick welding I have done.  Much more precise and controllable but it requires fine control of the filler rot and the tig torch. I need more practice.

Day 35

Trip to New Hampshire

Day 36

Back to work on the Riley. I made the top mounting bracket for the B post.  The old mounting bracket had almost completely rusted away.  The new one was fabricated from 1/8 steel bent 90 degrees in my vice .  It's  similar to the bottom B post bracket. I moved on to the vent panel. I sand blasted it to remove the rust. This reveled some rust holes and some thin metal along the bottom edge. I cut out the worst area and welded in a patch using the tig.  Worked great, it's controllable with no burn through. I sand blasted the vent panel again to remove the last vestiges of rust.  I need new sand for the blast cabinet the old stuff is getting very dusty.

Day 37

Today I shaped the wood for the front door shut.  I used a belt sander and a hand plane to give the outside edge the correct contour.  The front of the vent panel attaches to a wood part that forms the outer edge of the fire wall.  Rot damaged this part and I needed to make a new one. I used the old part as a pattern. I installed with polyurethane sealant and screws. Screw rant: (I can not buy good steel screws locally. The alloy of metal used is so soft the screws  snap in half before they are fully tightened. The heads also strip at the drop of a hat.  I am now using stainless steel.) I coated all exposed wood with epoxy to seal it.

Day 38

I welded the B post mounting bracket to  the B post and test fitted the vent panel. Then I reinstalled the doors to check their alignment.  It was hard to get the door gaps to look good. The rear door had a large gap on the lower rear. I had to cut the rear body mount away and reposition it to close the gap. I also adjusted the thickness of the body mounting spacers to get the doors to line up. The rear door looks good now but the front is too far away from the vent panel.  I need to do some more adjusting. I want to get this correct before moving to the other side. To give myself a rest from door adjusting I fabricated and welded in place a patch for the lower rear door shut face ( C post ?). This had rusted away and a previous repair was made with aluminum and bondo. Now it's steel tig welded in place.

Day 39

Today  I test fitted the vent panel again and made a new front door shut part. It is a 2 inch wide strip of 20 ga steel with a with a 3/8 lip.  This part also needed a rectangular hole for a rubber door buffer cut in it. I welded this part to the vent panel. Originally it would have been nailed to the wood after the vent panel was installed and leaded over. My way should be stronger and use less lead. Before I could install the vent panel permanently I needed to fabricate a front sill cover.  The sill cover is a flat U shape and finishes the outer wood sill.  I made this part from 20ga stainless steel. The sill area is exposed to a lot of water and road grime,  I think the stainless steel should last longer than painted plain steel. The sill cover is longer than my 24 inch bending brake so I clamped the stainless to a large angle iron and bent it over with a hammer.  The next step is to install the vent panel permanently and make a rear sill cover.

 

Day 40

I cleaned up with the help of the little boy who put a stool in the car so he could sit and pretend to drive.