Here's the rub. I spent all that time stripping the body for paint and repair and now it's gone. The garage is empty now, except for parts scattered everywhere.
Engine over there, suspension over here, transmission over there, door cards, windshields, seats, header, driveshaft ahhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!
I decided to tackle the front suspension. I was smart enough to have my welder neighbor fab up a front dolly for me that I bolted to the car with the suspension bolts before sending it out for paint, which left me everything that's attached to the front subframe lying on the garage floor. My son happened to have an engine stand, so I rented a hoist and lifted the engine onto the stand. Sounds easy now, but as with all these jobs, I research incessantly until the idiot savant in me understands how to do it, and then I take 3 times as long as anyone else to actually do the job, after 5 trips to the hardware store to get everything I need. I've learned to hate these guys who say "oh yeah, that's a piece of cake! 2 hours and a pair of pliers and you should have that job done no problem!" Yeah right. Their 'two days' usually takes me two weekends.
Anyway, I'm great at taking things apart! The front suspension was easy enough, although a lot of Bill Williams' thread came in handy. I'm especially OCD about labeling stuff because these jobs tend to get interrupted, so I took a lot of pictures too. Unfortunately, there are pictures on my phone, IPAD and laptop....can't seem to find any of them when I need them.
I spent a lot of time cleaning the subframe with an angle grinder and steel brushes. Of course I tackled the front engine mount reinforcement with the IE plate. Some say you should box this in, unlike what I did, but too late. What's done is done. I also found some rust that needed repair...off to my neighbor again, who cut it out and welded in a plate. Thanks Ronnie!
The ball joints were a bear IIRC. I literally had to cut the rusted bolt off with a dremel....those babies were on there! Reassembly of those were easy peasy. The rest of the bushings, not so much. Here I learned the physics and power of a threaded rod with bolts and washers at both ends. Wanna know the secret to getting these bushings in? Blue Dawn Liquid. That's the ticket! Works like charm! Make sure you know which end goes which way!
Blunt got a lot of my business with these subframes. Steve was instrumental in helping me choose the right parts I needed and even with helping me through installation when I got stuck. I can't say enough for Steve. He loves these cars and it shows. I ended up with ST sway bars, H&R Springs and HD Bilsteins. I don't know why I painted my struts yellow, but I kinda like them!
I can't believe it's been a year and a half since my last blog entry. So much has happened I can barely remember it all!
Since I left off sending the car off to the paint shop, I'll start there.
Had it towed 30 some odd miles and gave the guy some cash to get started, along with a signed estimate. Quite honestly I was nervous about how the whole thing would go, what with rust removal, new fenders, new front air dam, new floor pans, paint color change etc etc. There have been so many horror stories about guys leaving their cars at body shops (especially in the Porsche world) only to either get it back to find horrendous workmanship or to be held hostage by the shop until they paid exorbitant extra charges to get their car back. None of that happened to me.
I vowed to stop by unannounced and often, making sure they were working on the car and doing the stuff I had asked them to do. This shop, like many, make their money on insurance claims, so therefore mine was a side job. I also brought more cash with me each time, to show appreciation and to keep them interested. Yes, I had them initial the invoice each time.
Sure I stopped by more than once to find no progress, but other times I found them covered in dust or paint while working on the car. There were also small decisions to be made, andI found it valuable to see the progress as it happened.
In the end I had to push them to get it done. He was there almost 6 months over the winter and it was time. Cue the tow truck. Here we go!
I spent the last few work sessions clearing out the engine bay and ancillary areas to try to get Fred ready to ship out for bare metal respray and rust repair. In a day and a half I completed removing the following:
-Fuel line from bay to tank
-Fuel pump (original under car location)
-Brake booster and Master Cylinder
-Windshield wiper motor and assembly (PIA!)
-Hood locking bar
-Battery plastic piece (so dumb!)
-Front brake lines (hard lines crumbled at fender connection)
-Rear brake lines (to center of car)
The biggest PIA was the windshield motor assembly. I discovered it's easier to do while standing inside the engine bay so you can have your hands on both sides to fiddle with it. The key for me was getting the passenger side spindle down first. Mind you, it would have been much easier if I had the heater fan out, but I don't.
The rear brake lines seem to have been replaced in the past. There's an SAE to metric connector under the car, so they must've rotted some time in the past. The front brake lines basically crumbled as soon as I put a wrench to them where they connect to the soft lines inside the fender. No big deal as these were getting replaced anyway.
The good news is the engine bay is pretty much rust free. It needs cleaning to be sure, but no rust evident. I stopped by my body guy and went over all my pix with him, and he's unfazed and ready to go. Hopefully the car will be out of my garage next week.
My neighbor was kind enough (well, $100 kind enough) to weld me up a front end chassis dolly after I bought some 6" wheels at HD. I put 4 on just in case. Car rolls around nicely, and frees up the subframe for me to work on while the car's in paint. Here it is being test fitted with some screw drivers.
Here we go!
The last few garage days, well actually ALL the garage days, have been leading up to the inevitable engine drop. While I hemmed and hawed and tried to negotiate my way out of dropping versus pulling, smarter guys than me prevailed and I resigned myself to the task.
After cutting the exhaust and getting that out of the way, I tackled the drive shaft front and rear. As with other pieces and parts on the car, I put some yellow paint marks on both ends so that I can realign the part later. I've been doing this perhaps unnecessarily, but what the hell, can't hurt. Plus, the wifey had a small bottle of acrylic that's easily removable. Fro the most part, the shaft came down without issues. I supported it with some lumber so it wouldn't conk me in the head, and marked the pre-loaded position of the support bracket as well as the transmission. Guibo and support bearing look ok, but I'm thinking might as well, might as well....later anyway.
I turned my attention to the clutch slave cylinder. Man, those nuts were tough to get to, but I finally got 'em. I was avoiding attacking the steering shaft coupler, as I gave it a half hearted try on Friday afternoon, to no avail. Sunday was D-Day. I'm going in.
Raj on this site gave me some pointers, but after loosening the pinch bolts that coupler wouldn't budge. I smacked the living bejesus out of that thing with a piece of wood repeatedly, heated it, juiced it with PB blaster, smacked it some more, and more and more....took me literally 2 1/2 hours to move it up the shaft and out of the way. I think it was the combination of oil (not PB) along with some heat that finally convinced it to move.
Every once in a while you come to a point where you just want to give up, walk away, call in the troops and let someone else do the dirty work. Then you realize that if you don't do it, it won't get done. This was one of those moments, maybe after like the 4th F bomb.
After lunch I decided to go for the drop! I checked all the hoses, electrical and mechanical connections, pulled the distributor and started jacking. The ATV jack for the engine was integral, although I might have put a floor dolly of some kind under the transmission to level it off when it came down. I followed a combination of both Raj's and Bill Williams instructions on how to do it, and took my time. I was a virgin engine dropper after all!
But down she came and then up went the car! I had to realign my wood bits once as the long piece was hitting the tranny support bracket, which is why they look so funny, but it worked just the same.
Next up is removing all the remaining stuff from the engine bay to clean it up for paint. I'm getting there!
Went after the exhaust Saturday morning. Beat it to death until lunch with PB Blaster, heat, hammers and crow bars but the slip fit fitting between the Ansa Sport Exhaust and the exhaust pipe to the header wouldn't budge. I posted a 'help' on the forum after searching the web, but didn't get much, other than heating it red hot with Oxy/acetlyne which I don't have, so I dropped it for the day and moved on to the header.
Seems that wanted to put up a fight as well. The lower bolts were tight to the down pipes and hard to get, but after about an hour I managed to get them off, including one that decided to come off with the stud as well. Surprise! At least it didn't snap. Then it was wrestling with the header itself. Under the car. From above. From under. From above. From under...argh. It finally came free and out. Looks like a Stahl repro, but you guys be the judge. Actually doesn't look so bad, other than the rusty chrome.
The following morning after sleeping on it, I decided the Sawzall was the best solution for the exhaust. I cut it just short of the slip fit, so I could re-use the Ansa Sport muffler.. Turned out the entire exhaust was Ansa with a resonator pipe, so I'll be reusing that for sure.
Next up was the driveshaft. Not too bad to loosen up, as you can spin it to get to the bolts. Of course one nut fought me, the last one, but a little heat and it was off. Supporting the shaft with my floor jack I loosened up the shaft support and down she came. Progress.
Next up was the clutch slave cylinder. Man, that upper bolt is just damn unreachable! I struggled with that stinking thing for about an hour and finally jammed a wrench up there behind it to hold it in place while a ratcheted it from inside the car. Phew. That sucked. Took me forever for one nut.
Spent some time disconnecting wires and hoses inside the engine bay, and labeling of course. I'm getting ready to pull the engine. I was going to drop the subframe, but the more I look at it, the more I think pulling is a better way to go. I won't have to build a chassis dolly to get the car to the painter, and I'll have plenty to do with the parts I have off the car while it's being fixed up and painted.
I've got a lot of hours into Fred so far. Many more to go I'm sure.
So last weekend I tackled the radiator removal. Easy peasy and only 4 bolts, after pulling the hoses. Radiator looks nice and clean but surprisingly there's a radiator shop nearby so I'll be taking it over for an evaluation and maybe a re-core. After that I went after the A/C condenser and fan. I'm going A/C delete on the car anyway so out it came. FYI you have to disconnect the fan from the condenser to get them out, but also, no problem. For those who are counting, they weighed 10.5 lbs together.
After that I went after the gas tank with a Rube Goldberg siphon. Worked like a charm and I got 2 1/2 gallons out of pretty nice gas for the Landcruiser. I then went after the electrical and fuel lines, labeling as I went because, well, my memory and spatial skills are not exactly sharp. The gas tank bolts were quite easy except for (of course!) one, which snapped. Theres's always one. I noticed my immersion tube was plugged by a PO, and posted a WTF on the forum, but no one seems to know why they did this. Pic below? Anyone?
Gas tank pulled fairly easily, although I did have to remove the rubber filler neck to get it past that. Another 2 gallons remained in the tank, which I poured into a bucket along with a slight amount of sediment. I'll be bringing the tank with me to the radiator shop for a clean and seal job, then paint it up after I get it back.
Next was the glass, front and rear windshields. After about an hour and going through 2 razor blades and getting them loosened up, I called a buddy over and we gave them a try. I have to say I was nervous, as it's fairly common in the Porsche world for these things to break. But I was careful, really careful, and made sure they were nice and loose before we gave them a try. OUT THEY CAME! They don't weigh much, so up they went (after getting the bosses approval) upstairs and out of the way for long term safe keeping.
After it was all over I pulled the gauge cluster and some wiring etc and looped them together to get them out of the way for paint. Next up is the engine and subframe, which should take me a few weekends. I'm new at this stuff, so I'm going s l o w l y !
Some progress pix.
I was away for several weeks and if you must know, played quite a bit of golf. But I've been back for a week now, so I got to work doing what needs to be done over the course of the following weeks to get it ready for the body shop, rust repair and paint. If you ever want to know why paint jobs cost so much money, try tearing a car down. It takes an incredible amount of time (and patience) and when I run out of the latter, I just call it a day and go back at it another time.
I actually got a lot done, at least IMHO. First up was that trim at the bottom of the door windows. Touchy stuff, but I managed without ruining it. Also removed the rear windows and associated trim, discovering that bottom trim portion is riveted. It came right up with a small knife, but will need to be drilled out and replaced with screws down the road. Rear windows were a piece of cake.
Not so the headlights. The four integral screws virtually snapped right off the bat; every one of them. So I'll be drilling them out as well and replacing with stainless nuts and bolts. Those bastards fought me pretty hard.
Got the hood off no sweat with the help of my son (scribed the hinges beforehand). Roundels pulled right off. Tail lights no sweat either. This car is pretty simple and everything is out in the open, at least so far. Even managed to pry off the aluminum windshield surrounds without damage, so I'll be reusing those hopefully.
Got the trunk latch and lock off...easy, after I search this forum how! Then I tackled the door latches, outside handle, strikers and mechanism. I can tell you I was nervous about these but other than it being dirty and greasy, it was very simple. I needed a little heat on two of the screws, but so what?
I had it in my head to take pictures of all the various stickers and their locations, and then sprayed them down with some degreaser I had hanging around and went after them with a razor blade scraper. Miraculously, all but one came off almost whole. They were all sprayed black from one or more horrible paint jobs, but underneath exposed virgin Polaris Silver! Thar she blows!!!
Took off the windshield wiper bottle and motor, nozzles and tubes. Removed the spent sunroof weatherstripping. Took off all door, hood and trunk rubber. Took both fenders off as well, as they're getting replaced (rust).
All in all, I got a lot done for not that many hours of work. Yesterday I took the car out on my driveway, jacked it up on each side as high as I could, and degreased power washed the living daylights out of it. Then I backed it in to begin the final stage of subframe and engine removal.
Oh, did I mention I found some 5 1/2" wheels for sale? Drove up and bought them for a song, so now I have 5, 5"x13 with the correct date code for 1974, and 5, 5 1/2x13's to use. While there the seller handed me an unused rear end gasket set and an outdoor mirror as a parting gift, since he had no use for them. Wow, nice score!
Oh, I almost forgot the most important thing! I contacted the second owner through receipts I had found inside the car. He verified that the car was in fact Polaris Silver with a Light Brown interior, even though all known Polaris Silver Tii's came with blue interiors. This is very exciting, as I now own the only 'known' Polaris Silver Tii with a interior color other than silver! Woo-hoo!
Here are some pix. More to follow.
The last few days were pretty full and I made sure to finish early so I could watch the Masters!
Before I did anything else I put the O-rings I got at the dealership in the fuel injection pump. Attached is the picture and the invoice. $7 a piece but they fixed the leaks!
After that I tackled the aluminum trim that's all over the car. The car had been painted at least once or twice before, so some of it was held on with plastic plugs, while there were still some original clips in place with their tiny nuts (7mm!). Don't sell this job short. It took me a long time to get this all of this stuff off and not ruin it. My plan is to do a TOTAL trim delete, but there's no sense in ruining these pieces...it's expensive to replace. I actually think I could reuse the gutter trim, even though it came off in a bit of a spiral. Hmm...
Pulling those plugs out of the body was difficult. You gotta be sure not to damage any sheet metal in the process, and those suckers are IN there! But I got them all.
Next were the door cards. My books advised me to be extra careful not to ruin the aluminum trim on top of the doors as it's impossible to source new, so I took my time. Gently prying up the edge after popping all the fasteners, I used a long screwdriver to wedge it up little by little. They finally came up and off, to reveal the original factory plastic. Yes, it had been re-taped by the painters, and I had to remove it to get a good look at the door insides. They looked pretty good! With the rears, you have to remove some trim pieces first....no sweat. These popped up pretty easily, way easier than the doors. Oh and look what's in there? The sunroof drains. What were they thinking?
The following day I bought 40 pounds of dry ice from the local Welding Supply shop, and started in on removing the sound deadening asphalt base insulation. I followed the directions on the thread Dry Ice Ice Baby, with some modifications. Suffice it to say it wasn't a difficult job, but took some time and much less ice than I anticipated. 20 pounds would do it no problem, and it freezes up pretty quickly. The tunnel is the worst part. I didn't do the rear seat back, as it was in perfect shape and theres no rust happening there. The removed insulation weighed 19.2 lbs.
Not so underneath the floor however. While I was expecting rust in the drivers side, the passenger side turned out to be bad as well, and it looks as if the drivers rear might need replacing also. These panels aren't all that expensive from RD, but I hope there's enough good material to effect a good weld on the sides. Guess we'll have to get grinding to find that out.
Speaking of which I got out the grinder and a wire brush and did some exploring underneath the car. Goggles, mask and lots of dirt, dust and undercoating but it was fairly easy going, just filthy....yeck.
I got the car on stands and did a little cleaning of all four wheel wells with simple green to at least get an idea of where we are. Looks pretty good rust wise, although the monkeys who painted this car black must've had blindfolds on. Black overspray is everywhere.
All in all a lot done but much, much more to do.
In the Porsche world, it's fairly common to delete the A/C and the center console in the early cars, at least in temperate climates. I personally never liked the look, and took the console out of my SC, creating miles of legroom and a much more open feeling.
I envisioned the same thing with Fred, so I dug in. The console was easy...a few nuts here, a few switches there. Of course, I labeled all the wires for future reference, and saved and labeled the console.
The Behr A/C was not as easy, and I was a little shocked not to be able to find an "A/C Delete" thread here. But I did read something about just cutting the hoses, and that made getting the inside unit out easier. BTW, it weighs 12 pounds.
The drier came out as well, made easier by me employing a reciprocating saw on the bracket, whose flathead screws were rusted in place. Be careful out there! I left the condenser and compressor for another time, maybe when I either do the coolant flush as the raidator seems to need to be pulled to get to both. I'm expecting a lot of weight saving between those two babies!
I also discovered some interesting archeological finds behind the glove compartment while digging around the console. I'm absolutely DYING to listen to these cassettes from the 80's, although I think I'll pass on the Tiparillos. Oh, and that parking ticket from Rutger's University! Shame on him!
The underside of the seats held a surprise. Note the blue material used to prop up the stuffing or padding. Apparently the seat manufacturers were being frugal, and used remnants to back fill their seats. Frugal Germans.
I also took a picture of the 4:1 header currently on the car. Any input about this unit?
I did a little rust inspection today as well. I'm sorry to report (and to find) Fred Flintstone could stop the car if he wanted to with his feet throught the pasenger floor....I'm sure this is just the tip of my proverbial rust iceberg...eek!
Here are some weights and measures for you guys that care.
Hoses, Dryer, fittings=2.6 lbs
Behr A/C unit=12.6 lbs
Rear Belts=3.2 lbs
Bumper trim=5.2 lbs
Console cardboard soundproofing=5.2 lbs
Carpet and accents=17.4 lbs
FRED HAS LOST 122.4 pounds!!!
I brought this 74 Tii home a few weeks ago, and my wife immediately dubbed him "Fred". This was because he was black, and according to her, looked like a top hat. This reminded her of Fred Astaire (she's living in the 1940's in her mind even thought she's ALOT younger than that), so who am I to argue with a wife naming one of my cars? This translates into acceptance, and who among us can't use a little more of that when it comes to acquiring vehicles?
Here is is, after I removed the impact bumpers. BTW, those suckers weigh 70 lbs., but more on that later.
I then dug into removing the carpet. Quite the battle as it was the one piece original, but I got it out. No one told me about the roof shingles being OEM under the drivers side floor....oh, maybe that was some prior owner doing a rust repair?
I ordered some small parts form various suppliers. Some of you might have read my experiences on the forum, but suffice it to say that $30 of parts were going to cost me $25 in shipping, so I ended up going to Uncle Google and Ebay and even paid retail at my local stealership to avoid shipping. One brake light switch (even though it turned out to be the bulbs) and 4 Fuel injector o-rings for $7 a piece. Hey, it was spitting gas all over the place. Worth every penny.