Sunday, 22 January 2017

Ez wire power window motor burns out. Replacing with Ford Falcon power window regulator.

So, as the tail end of my holidays draws to a sad close, and the drudgery of work beckons with the rising of the sun in the morrow, I spent a little bit of quality time on Dorothy because, well, I had been neglecting her for the past three weeks.
This little bit of quality time lasted around five days solid. It began when I went to take the old tart out for a run shortly after getting back from Phillip Island.
The driver's side power window (which had always been a bit twitchy), decided that it was time to stop working completely.
So, this little bit of quality time took FIVE F*&$#&* DAYS TO FIX!!!!\
....sorry about that, but I feel better for shouting it out.
Five days, man.
God basically got most of the world sorted in five days and I was still messing around with trying to get the power window to work.
Ez wire motor. More deceased than any parrot ever was.
Let me tell you what happened...
I will try not to bore you.
I took the whole ez wire assembly out. Checked the motor. It was not working. Took it up to an auto electrical shop to test and he confirmed it. Burned to a crisp.
I don't think you can buy just a replacement motor around here (Australia, that is). I think you can get them in from the US, but the company that sells them wants something like sixty bucks for a new one and over ninety to post it. So, one hundred and fifty bucks please, for a replacement motor.
There had to be a cheaper option.
I thought about the trusty old Ford Falcon electric motor from the BA series. I used one in the old 52 Buick I had. Got the windows working fine as I recall. So, I felt there was a good chance they might serve me well in the f100. Bought a brand new unit from eBay for around $62 delivered.

Here is a dreadful photo comparing the two. Ez wire unit on the left, Falcon on the right. The Ez wire unit uses a worm and groove system to wind a threaded metal cable up the shaft of the regulator. The Ford unit is a thin metal cable. Ford unit is a couple of inches shorter in the shaft too. Oh, and it's bent, and that is not a good thing.
I was able to straighten it out a little bit, but did not want to go too stupid with it in case I stuffed up the tension on the cable or some such thing...
Stripped of its glass support channel the ez wire unit looks a bit like this.  This was early days. I was experimenting with ways of adapting the Falcon one on the ez wire shaft, but soon gave up.

Ford unit with the bits taken off that I would not need. Namely, this entire metal plate.

This is the Ford unit with the EZ wire glass holding thing attached to it (sorry, the technical term for what it is escapes me) Here I have drilled a couple of holes in the frame above the white plastic shield to mount the EZ wire component.
 Brackets and stuff getting sorted out.

Starting to take shape now.

At one stage I used rubber grommets to provide some flexibility in the setup but aborted this as they only exacerbated the issues of fouling everything

Finding a new home. Access to the motor is nice and easy, too. I used some heavy duty aluminium strips and drilled holes in the bars for elevation but found it was not flexible enough. Replaced them with a thinner grade metal bracket which had more flex.

Of course there is always something that fouls the smooth flow of glass. In this case it was the actual metal brackets!
Would you believe they hit the top of the rail! That required me to off set the rails.

I ended up changing these to a thinner bracket and added a stabilising bar at the end and in the centre of the brackets for added support.

Folks, that was only PART of the problem!
The Autoloc crank handle switch unit also came under the firing line. I believed that part of the reason why the window never went up and down properly was because of this dodgy Autoloc device.
I rewired it, and when I did so, discovered that one of the terminals on the thing was badly turned, and the micro switch was not making a proper clicking sound as it should have been doing.

At that stage, I didn't know whether I could buy micro switches just any old where, so I contacted Autoloc and they sold them for twelve bucks each and I didn't even ask how much postage. I think it was close to sixty bucks!
Thankfully, Jaycar  had them for a few bucks each, They came with a tong or a bar over the small contact button, but this proved easy to remove by pulling the switch apart just a little the bar fell right out.

This was the damaged micro switch. See how twisted the terminal was? It was actually making contact all the time.  No wonder they never worked properly.

So with new micro switches in there I put the whole thing together.
Well, it was then that I discovered the motor was becoming very hot for no apparent reason, so I pulled all the wiring off and re checked everything. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary. I sprayed silicone spray on the glass channels and re-checked. Still getting very hot. In fact, the motor was getting hotter even after I disconnected it. I changed to a lower fuse and noticed the current fuse which was a ten amp had almost melted in its enclosure. So, I put a 7 amp fuse in there and decided to run relays with the setup.
Getting a bit too professional here, I think. Maybe I should have used the crappy old wires I kept from the Jaguar strip instead of these nice 4mm new wires and new crimps?
Doesn't even look like my normal dodgy standard of work!

Anyway, I don't know whether it was the relay setup that helped or the silicone spray or the re wiring or the micro switches or all of these things, but finally after five effing days, they actually work!
Ready for work!

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

2017 Kustom Nationals Phillip Island Post Mortem

Folks, just got back from a magnificent three day stay in beautiful Phillip Island. Gorgeous sunsets, beautiful people everywhere with great, friendly attitudes. Perfect weather. Could not ask for more. It's a 12 and a half hour straight run for us down the coast road, but I think it was work the extra hour and a half over the inland road as we got to see some nice coastal towns. On our return trip we went a bit inland and the towns were even more interesting! I think my wife and I are now officially big fans of Victoria. Who knows? Maybe someday we will move there.

With stunning sunsets like these, who could not fall in love with Phillip Island?

Anyway, we saw seals, penguins, koalas to make my better half happy, but the REAL deal happened
in San Remo on Friday night!
Man, what a fantastic atmosphere! Hundreds of cars, kustoms, hotrods and thousands of fans just soaking up the incredible vibes. We got down there just as the sun was fading into the distance (see top photo taken off the main bridge) and the photo quality suffered as a result. Anyway, not much time for photos, just had to walk around and soak it up.

Here is a taste of Friday night in San Remo. Once again, sorry about the quality. I think it was because of the incoming evening darkness.

On Saturday, we went to the race circuit and spent a couple of hours walking around and watching the cars on the track. A very hot 31 degrees out there when we arrived, and there were more rolling in, so I am sure I only got a small sample of what was actually there.  15 bucks to get in, and that, in fact was the cheapest thing we could get into on Phillip Island. A beautiful place, but bring your money with you. Anyway, here are some more snaps from Saturday's venture.
The display was excellent overall. All pre 1965 vehicles. Not many super show cars, but excellent all the same. The highlight for me was watching them go up and down Phillip Island. We stayed just over the bridge in Newhaven and could see the cars come and go on the main drag. That was so very cool to watch.
On Saturday night we went to Cowes to check out the action. Let me say this was one heck of a good place to be on Saturday night! The ONLY place to be in Victoria, I would think. Cowes came alive with hundred and hundreds of hotrods and kustons, the varieties of which I have never seen before. 
I didn't take the camera, but you will just have to experience it yourself! Nearly every second shop in Cowes is an alfresco eatery and I think my wife said she thought they were selling beer in coffee shops. Wouldn't surprise me. The beer was flowing like crazy, but everyone was having a great time. No fights, no bullshit, just everyone digging the scene. At least that is what we saw. Dunno how things panned out in the late hours, but we called it a night around 11 pm and no one was going anywhere. 

Here's Dorothy's cousin! Although, sadly, we didn't take the truck down, we still had a good time. Would have been nice to have been a part of the whole thing. Maybe next year.

Someone said there were only Copperhead snakes in Phillip Island. Looks like they were wrong. Here are two Cobra's!

 A couple of rods spotted in San Remo that afternoon
I think this one might have found a new home as there was some frantic phoning by a guy standing right next to it. Took a bit of a shine to it myself. Wendy even gave it a thumbs up! We're slowly converting her into a hotrod fan! 

Saving the best 'til last
$6 ice chocolate. Worth every cent!

Here we are acting the tourist