Happy New Year! I returned from spending 17 days in Hawaii to a snow covered landscape in Virginia. Just before arriving back in Hampton Roads, it had snowed over 10 inches. Fortunately I didn't get stuck at the airport. My bags were delayed but I got them soon enough.
Spent today installing the right control arm. I'm only planning on taking one class this semester so I think that I'll be able to spend a little more time with the build.
TOTAL TIME THIS WEEKEND: 2 hours
January 10-11, 2002:
I spent Friday and Saturday taking care of some little stuff in preparation of dropping the engine into the frame. I had a few issues involving the brakes that needed to be addressed. I was experiencing a leak from the master cylinder valve that went to the front brakes. Speaking to some experts, they recommended using some thread locker red to stop the leaking. Well it worked like a champ. I re-bled the brakes and they don't leak now.
I also worked on trying to get the steering rack adjusted for proper toe-in. I noticed that no matter how much I cut the inner tie-rod ends, I couldn't get the proper toe-in. I later found out through the NAPA parts guy that the inner tie rod ends are longer for 94+ Mustangs than the earlier ones. This also probably explained why I had the negative camber problem from the lower control arms. I think that the donor parts that I got were from a 94+ Mustang. Who knows? At this point I decided on purchasing a Flaming River Steering rack.
I drove up to NoVa early Saturday morning to visit Nate and Kelly. I headed up there because on Sunday I was to attend a Baptism for Tim and Nicole's new daughter, Alison. Sunday's baptism was held in Frederick, MD. Now I am officially a Godfather!
TOTAL TIME THIS WEEK: 5 hours
January 17-21, 2002:
Martin Luther King Jr long weekend. Due to the holiday on Monday, we were also given a training holiday on Friday. I spent Thursday evening installing the flywheel, clutch and bell housing onto the engine. On Saturday I installed the Flaming River rack that I ordered through Summit Racing earlier in the week. Talk about timing. I was working in the garage on Friday morning removing the old setup from the car and just as I was finishing up, the FedEx truck pulled up and handed me the Flaming River stuff!
I was amazed at how well everything fit together with the Flaming River setup. I had no problems with toe-in and I was even more impressed with how smoothly the steering was compared to the old power rack. I would say that if anyone is planning on running manual steering that purchasing the Flaming River setup is mandatory! There is no comparison.
Later that day I drove up DC to hang out with Neil. Spent Saturday and Sunday up in DC hanging out and visiting friends. There is so much to do in the city! We ended up helping out with a service project on Saturday cleaning up a street in spite of all of the snow that fell!
I returned to the Hampton Roads area on Sunday. After catching a movie (and waiting for the rain to die down), Curt and I dropped the engine into the car. This was quite a momentous event for this build. I was dreading this step because I had never installed an engine into a vehicle before. We got a little creative in dropping it in since we only had two people to do it. I would recommend having at least three people to accomplish this. More hands would make it a lot easier! I'm really starting to see some progress again.
TOTAL TIME THIS WEEKEND: 5 hours
January 24, 2002:
Installed the accelerator cable tonight. I wasn't too sure how it was supposed to attach to the throttle body but after playing around with it a bit I was able to figure it out. I will probably have to bend the accelerator pedal so that I don't have to reach so far with my foot. I also will have to bend it so that the throttle stays more closed. I think that I may experienct the problem that is outlined in the manual about how you can have an excessively high idle if you don't adjust it properly.
I also installed the clutch cable. Prior to installing this I installed Forte's adjustable clutch quadrant. It was pretty intuitive installing these items.
TOTAL TIME TONIGHT: 3 hours
January 26-27, 2002:
On Friday I picked up a Mass Air Flow bracket from one of the garages in the local area that specializes in Mustangs. I was thinking of bending my own steel but I'm glad that I purchased this from him.
On Saturday I spent most of the day fiddling around with the fuel lines. I originally kept the lines a little too long for them to attach nicely to the hard fuel lines from the engine. I ended up cutting them shorter and reflaring the ends with a flaring kit that I borrowed from Autozone. The quality of that flaring kit left much to be desired. The one that I used from Ft Monroe's auto craft shop was much better. The line kept slipping in the holder so I eneded up using a pair of vise grips to help the clamp grip the line better.
The hard fuel lines were "hard" to work with. The key to success here is to make sure that you bend them close to the clips that hold them against the engine block. This ensures that you keep them away from the hot exhaust headers. I also had to go out and buy one of those tools to help you disconnect the hard fuel lines. There is a little spring "garter" that holds the fuel lines in place. This tool helps you to stretch the spring over the lip. After getting the fuel lines secured I mounted the MAF. I like the way that the air cleaner looks! I also repainted the evaporative canister and bracket and mounted it to the 3/4' frame.
On Sunday I cleaned up the fan shroud and mounted the fan to it. I was going to mount the radiator to the front but ran out of time. I ended up going over to a friend's house for turkey!