sansthelight

’78 International Harvester Scout II, Part 6 (I think, it’s been so long since the last one)

In Uncategorized on October 23, 2015 at 9:32 pm

I think it has been about 9 months since the last update.   I have in fact done some work on the truck.  I just didn’t finish anything until today.  Scratch that, I did get the reverse lights hooked up within a couple days of the last update.  I also did start to tear down the motor.  I got the accessories removed included all the stuff for the non-working air conditioning system.  At some point I might add AC back to the truck but the system that was on the truck didn’t work.  Considering I don’t own a roof for the Scout, air conditioning is probably not all that important right now.   I also got the radiator, radiator fan, pulleys, water pump housing, and the water pump pulled.   Finally I started to take the actual motor apart and discovered that the gaskets where just fine.  The vacuum leaks existed because none of the bolts where torqued down properly.   I never even thought to check that before ordering the gaskets and seals.   I probably could have just torqued everything down and been good.  At this point though I had the head covers and intake manifold removed so I decided I would clean up and paint what I removed already.  I replaced the gaskets for everything I had pulled off as well.   I took the parts and brackets in to work to use the sand blaster and get everything cleaned up nice.  I bought black and orange engine enamel to paint everything with.  As it turns out I really hate the orange and it doesn’t appear to be sticking very well on the cast parts either.

In the middle of this I got a full time job and tried to keep my part time job as well as going to school full time.  Needless to say, I ran out of time to work on the Scout and the gathering inertia was lost.  I ended up quiting the part time job fairly quickly but still spent about 65 hours a week (and almost all of my day time hours) at work and school.   Parts languished on my work bench waiting for me to get the time and energy back to continue working on the Scout.

Recently my schedule has changed enough that I have time off during the day and I started working on reassembly.  I got everything except the radiator and associated hoses reinstalled over the last few weeks. I wanted to finish everything up and start the truck last weekend but I got the flu.  Despite running a pretty good fever I still tried to get everything organized so that I would be ready to start putting everything together first thing this weekend.  Working while running a fever turns out to have been a mistake as I threw one of the new radiator hoses away and kept an old one.  A quick trip to NAPA this morning fixed that problem and I installed the radiator and hoses today.

Despite sitting for the last 9 months without head covers, intake manifold, water pump/housing, alternator, thermostat, radiator, and all the belts and hoses the Scout started up first time and sounded strong.   I do have some coolant leaks that need to be fixed but the truck is alive again.  Hopefully this time I can keep that inertia going.

Project Ruckus – Part 5 Weight Savings (and then adding some back.)

In fabricating, project truck, ruckus on March 21, 2015 at 8:37 pm

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In an attempt to shed some weight and to make the Ruckus look a little more industrial I removed the floor boards and (once I get the next package from Battlescooter.com) will remove the stock airbox.  The stock muffler and it’s plastic muffler shield will be dumped as well.  Ultimately I would like to remove all the plastic.  Some of it fulfills an actual need and will need to be replaced with some other material.  To that end I decided I needed to add some sort of over the motor to replace the original floor board that runs the entire length of the scoot.   Last night I played around with design that would run the entire length of the upper frame.  Unfortunately you can’t bolt a flat sheet across the top of the frame due the way the wiring harness is run and the associate mounts and supports.  I wasn’t happy with the way my solutions to this problem looked so I decided to sleep on it and try again this morning.

I decided that I would make two panels.  One panel would fill the section of frame over the rear fender and the second would actually mount to the side panels of my cargo box under the seat.  The first panel was easy.  I just chopped off the rear section of the piece I had fabricated last night.  I used a couple sections of hose to act as spacers between the frame mounts and the panel.  Then I sprayed the new panel with black plastic dip and a plastic clear coat on top and primer and black spray paint on the bottom.

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Painting the panel.

The finished panel mounted on the frame.

The finished panel mounted on the frame.

The spacer was made using sections of rubber hose.

The spacer was made using sections of rubber hose.

The second panel was a little harder although not much.  The seat frame gets a little wider (about an inch) from front to rear to I couldn’t get a way just with chopping a square chunk of sheet.  But with some basic measurements I was able to  cut and bend a piece to fit.  The front of the panel flares up so that there won’t be a slot between it and the front panel for things to slide through.  The sides fold down to form mounting tabs to the side panels.  This lets me adjust the height of the panel so that it does not interfere with any of the wiring harness or associated hardware and lets me hide the mechanical connectors under the floor so that they don’t catch on whatever cargo I through in there.  I thought about spot welding the panel in so that there wouldn’t be any visible connectors that would need to go through the side panels.  I decided that I liked the more industrial look that would give me though and went with pop rivets.  I was originally going to use standard rivets but since the back side of the rivet will not be seen I figured I could get away with taking the easy route this time.  I really like the look of rivets.  I think I want to do the entire bike in naked aluminum sheet and rivets for a WW2 fighter look when I have more time and experience fabricating.  I decided I would spay the inside of all of the seat panels with the rubber dip to cut down on sound and vibration although I left the outsides green and the underside of the floor I just painted black.  Once I got everything painted I assembled everything and put the frame back on the Ruckus.

Painting the panels with plastic dip.

Painting the panels with plastic dip.

Getting it all put together.

Getting it all put together.

Rivets are cool.

Rivets are cool.

Inside the under-seat cargo space.

Inside the under-seat cargo space.

A look through the back.

A look through the back.

I did weigh the replacement panels and associated connectors but I should have come out ahead of the stock plastic floor pan and I prefer the plastic-less look of the Ruckus regardless.  Sometimes fashion comes first.  The Ruckus is much quieter now as well.  I don’t know if it was just adding the panels back in above the motor or if the plastic dip paint is the cause of this, but I like it.  I don’t mind some noise but just hearing everything vibrate doesn’t add anything to the experience.  Speaking of unwanted vibrations…   I also added that little clip that connects the two battery box halves together and slid into the top of the front floor boards.  I had pulled it out to facilitate removing the floor boards and thought that it might rattle against the front frame if it wasn’t clipped into the floor board so I had left it of.  The vibration noise from the battery box was really annoying though so I reinstalled it to see it would make a difference.  It really does.  I might spray it with plastic dip as well to cut down on any noise it make rubbing against the front frame but I’m not sure it is needed.  That’s it for today.

Project Ruckus – Part 4 coke can tuning

In Uncategorized on March 14, 2015 at 11:06 pm

I needed a new air filter for the Ruckus.  The old one is pretty dirty.  I knew that eventually I was going to put a K&N intake/air cleaner on the bike. Rather than buy a regular air filter now and then buy another air filter (the K&N) in the near future I just bought the K&N now.  I was told that I would have to re-jet the carburetor if I added an intake with higher air flow.  (A carburetor has a number of fuel nozzles called jets, that can be changed to allow more fuel into the intake airstream.) Of course I ignored that.  I’m still not 100% sure that re-jetting is necessary.  At the very least though, adjusting the fuel/air mixture is necessary and it takes a special tool to do that on this carb.  I don’t have that tool. (yet.) So running the new K&N is problematic.  I spent my morning trying a tip I read on one of the Ruckus forums.  That tip was to use a strip of aluminum can and place it over the end of the intake pipe under the air filter.

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I tried a number of sizes between 10 and 20 mm wide.  I ultimately ended up with one that was about 15 mm wide.  It ran fine in the parking lot at that size.  I decided that I would ride home from work with it set up this way.  I kept the stock filter and airbox in my backpack as well as some hand tools as insurance.  The first couple of miles it went ok.  I lost a couple of mph as my top speed seemed to be about 34 (down from 37).  At around the 2 mile mark the aluminum strip started to tear apart under the stress from the incoming air.  For a couple of seconds the bike ran great and top speed jumped to about 38.  Then the aluminum tore threw the rest of the way and the bike leaned out and died.  This tells me that the strip was too wide and the mixture was a bit rich.  It also tells me that strips of a soda can will not handle the stress of being an air-dam in the intake.  I pulled the bike into an empty lot and swapped the stock airbox back onto the bike and rode the rest of the way home.  Oh well, no guts no glory.

I decided to just bite the bullet and order the rest of the planned power adders and a re-jet kit so that I can put everything on and just re-jet the carburetor one time.  I will put the parts that don’t require any carb work on first so that we will be able to see what effect they will have on the bike’s performance on their own.  This includes a variator kit and new kevlar belt.  The variator is a type of continuously variable transmission that is used on the Ruckus.  I also ordered some stronger clutch springs to compliment the variator upgrade.  After getting some data on how that works I will install the new exhaust and reinstall the K&N.  I will then do the carburetor tuning (I ordered the fuel/air mixture adjustment tool) and hopefully get the jetting figured out.  Finally I have a new computer (CDI) that will get installed.  It will remap some of the timing curve and raise the rev limiter.  Because I have a used 2003 ECU in my bike the rev limiter is at 8000 rpm.  The CDI will get rid of that and set it too 10800.  I believe that is what the limiter is set at on 2006 and newer ECU’s already.  And that will be the end of the power upgrades.  I will still need to extend the chasis frame so there is a bit more leg room and change the handle bars to some drag style bars.  I also plan on upgrading the front drum brake to a disc brake and upgrading the suspension.  So that’s the road map for the future.  See ya next time.