Monday, September 13, 2010

Bound to cover just a little more ground

Wow. It's been a while. Belle is doing real well. I spent some time last weekend getting her ready for our next run: Furthur in Eugene! Should be a good run. I'm heading out to Wheeler, Oregon to pick up Mike, then back to PDX to pick up Trinidad, then down to Eugene for the shows, then back to Wheeler and finally back to Lake Oswego. I figure around 600 miles or so round trip.

In preparation, I naturally gave her a tune-up and TLC:

1. Changed the intermediate fuel filter. This was interesting (if not a little worrisome). When I did the major work last year, I installed a Carter electric fuel pump with the big external filter. Figuring that filter was more expensive than the little plastic jobbies we all use and can get for a buck and change, I installed one of the plastic jobbies between the fuel tank the and the main pump filter, because when I emptied the tank and replaced the sender unit last year, I noticed some rust. When I looked at that intermediate filter this time, OMG. It was orange with rust. Amazing I was even getting any fuel at all. Much better now. I haven't checked the primary filter, but the carb internals are still clean as a whistle, so I figure I'm good.

2. Checked the valves. Not bad. Number 1 intake was a tad tighter than I like, so adjusted, and number 4 exhaust was a tad loose. Adjusted.

3. Timing hasn't changed since I installed the Pertonix system. God bless electronic ignition.

4. Oil change. Okay, this is where my true knuckle-headedness comes in. I bought the usual gasket sets, and like everytime I've done so over the last 16 years, noticed that the oil screen gaskets came in a pair. When I commented on this, the nice fella behind the counter said, "Yep, one for each side of the screen." Doohhhh! I don't know what I've been doing for 16 years. I think sometimes I'd put it on one side, and sometimes the other. THIS time, I pulled the screen and removed 5 (!!) old gaskets from the screen and the bottom of the motor where it goes. (Note to self... stop doing tune-up/oil changes while drinking beer). Anyway, so I put ONE filter on each side of the oil screen this time, and guess what! No leaks. :-)

5. The usual filter and plug changes, and general engine compartment cleaning. Not bad really.

6. More as test than anything, I sanded down to the metal some of the more egregious painting/putty errors on the body, and repainted the whole bus (by brush no less) with my usual Gloss Hunter Green Rustoleum. She looks mighty shiny now!

7. Repaired 2 of the 3 problem areas in the top fiberglass.

8. General inside cleaning. Next year I think I'm going to completely redo the interior, going for more of a "living room" look on the inside.

9. Topped off brake fluid.

10. Fixed small leak in exhaust headers. On going problem. The simple fact is the whole exhaust system needs to be replaced, so I started shopping around. She'll make it for now, and I'll change the whole critter next year.

Pictures soon. "Keep 'em flying!"