25 04 2013

You should probably be sitting down for this one.  It’s pretty amazing.  My horn works.

Life is good.



Parking Brake Cable Work

14 04 2013

Well, I needed some good news and/or progress  on my Scout and last night, I finally got it.

I had known for a while that my emergency brake cable was rubbing on my drive shaft.  That can’t be good.  Cutting a groove into the big steel rod that makes the wheels turn.  Bad.  And if the break cable were to snap while I was driving, well I guess that could wrap around something at high speed and cause all sorts of problems.  So the issue was finally addressed.

I found out, from the good people at www.binderplanet.com that my cable horse shoe was on upside down   Also, bending the rod down a bit could give me some extra room without causing any functionality problems.


It took a good solid hour to get the shoe off.  My right hand is pretty sore today.  But finally I was able to flip the shoe over.  It took a little tension off the rubbing drive shaft, but they still touched.  Time to bend the rod.


I’m pretty fortunate in that I own a lot of tools.  Mostly for woodworking though.  This is a 1/2 inch thick iron rod.  This is blacksmith work right here.  Time to fire up the furnace and start pounding on the anvil.  But since I lack those items, I had to get creative.  I do own a very large hand held sledge hammer and I tried pounding it out on the concrete for a while, but that only made holes in the concrete.  So where can I find a flat slab of solid metal to use as an anvil?  As it turns out, the friendly city of Milwaukee has kindly dispersed large, heavy, thick,  flat metal worktables all throughout the city for home workshop enthusiasts to use.  I believe they call them “man hole covers.”  Worked like a charm.  Although I think some guy walking his dog thought I was trying to ‘break in’ to the under belly of the city.  I could have explained myself, but I think it’s healthy to give people’s imagination a good stretch.

Rod bent, and here’s the final product:


Shazam!  Parking Brake cable is 1/2 inch off the drive shaft.

I jumped for joy for about 5 solid minutes.  It’s not often that I set out to complete a new project and actually COMPLETE the project in the same day.

Now, I think it’s important to point out that my parking brake doesn’t even work… that’s for another day.  But at least I’m not putting my self and my truck in danger as I drive down the road.

I also had some time to work on my horn for a bit.  I spent some time browsing through my owners manual and found the problem.  I’m simply missing a single screw that connects ground to close the electrical circuit.   I can’t find the right size screw, but I “Kentucky’d” a copper wire in the screw hole to test and… HONK.  Electricity = Black Magic.

One last thing – my truck looks GREAT on mini ramps.



Working with Spencer

10 04 2013

Last time I had my steering wheel off, my wife helped me get it back on.  Although I greatly enjoyed the experience, my wife made it clear that the 5 minutes it took to help was her least favorite 5 minutes of the day.

So this time I knew better than to ask her for help.  My 8 year old son pitched in and did a sensational job.  Steering wheel is back on (tight this time) and all is well.  Nothing quite like the feeling of working on your truck with your son’s help.  My best 5 minutes of the day.  Maybe the year…

Now that the wheel is locked in, it’s time to get the horn working.  I’m not sure why it doesn’t.  Last time I tried to fix it, I couldn’t get the horn to turn OFF!   Might be a fuse.  Might be a loose wire.  Might be that I don’t need a horn…

Or I could find another solution.