It’s been a while since I’ve posted some progress updates on the truck build so here it goes. The following is a short list of components I’ve changed out and a few maintenance items performed:
I had approximately four quarts of automatic transmission fluid changed out and did an oil change with fine lab results.
I replaced one Blue Sea Systems fuse block with the higher capacity Safety Hub 150. The Safety Hub 150 is rated for up to 280A and allows the use of higher current/interrupt rated MIDI®/AMI® fuses in addition to smaller ATO/ATC fuses. I also finally got around to covering up the exposed “hot” points on the isolation breaker, upgraded a few ground wires and replaced the Odyssey Group 34R battery with a NorthStar 27F battery.
Good evening everybody, this post is simply to showcase another video about driving on the fine roads in San Diego and the drivers contained therein. From wrong way motorists, to Interstate crashes, and illegal U-turns my dash camera has recorded all sorts of highway hijinks for you to be amazed by. Enjoy!
A few weeks ago I typed up a post about cleaning up the frame of my truck and am posting a quick update. I took off the front skid plate and proceeded to alternate between working on the front and rear ends of the frame. I spent some more time chemically dissolving the rubberized goop previously applied to the frame, used a lot of wire wheels and flap discs, and spent so much time cleaning all to spend just a small fraction of the total time actually laying down any paint. In an endeavor such as the one I’m am working on the preparation work is what is the most important. Here are the photos of the forward end (before):
I only took a few photos of the rear:
I’ll post up some more progress photos, a few opinion pieces, and another soldering video soon!
Oh boy, are we in for a good post today folks. Tonight’s post is about the laborious task of removing the rubberized undercoating that the previous owner of my truck applied to the frame and lower portions of the body and bed. I am not a fan of rubberized undercoating as it can make a lot of electrical plugs or bolts difficult to remove, lowers the ability to easily inspect some parts, and cracks over time which allows water to get under it but not easily evaporate. I long ago began the project of removing all of this gunk from my truck and it has been slow going and I still have much left to do. Attempting to use any type of wire wheel, grinding disc, flap disc is ineffective at removing these types of coating as the removal media is rapidly clogged. The use of a chemical means of dissolving the rubberized coating (I just recently noticed that the methylene chloride formula is no longer available in California) is necessitated by this problem and is very miserable and time-consuming.
Here’s a quick video for anyone who is thinking about using rubberized undercoating on their on vehicle:
Here are some of the photos of the work I’ve been doing on the truck most recently:
I had a little mishap as I was removing some rust from the rear axle…
While I really do need to finish this project I probably should have thought a little harder about the variable-gauge wire wheel I was using next to the wheel speed sensor cabling. It would have been so easy to unplug but I decided to test fate instead. I am fairly certain that no harm was done to the sensor but I bought that as well; hopefully I can just return it.
This photo is unrelated to the post, but do you like my custom exhaust mod?
Good evening everybody, tonight’s post is just about the most recent photos and videos I took from the Coronado Bridge and Coronado Tidelands Park on the eastern side of the island. The ride up and down the Coronado Bridge is awe inspiring and quite beautiful at all times of the day and is well worth your time if you ever pass through San Diego. Bridge traffic to and from Naval Base Coronado can be terrible from about 0500-0800 and 1500-1800 on a weekday so be sure to avoid the bridge at those times. The Coronado Tidelands Park is a quite and calming place to spend the afternoon and I’ll have to take my bicycle and explore island and Silver Strand in a more personal way. I’ll leave a few photos below and you can enjoy the rest of them on the dedicated page here!
First of we’ll start with the rear differential gear oil (last changed about 10,000 miles ago):
I took images with and without a flash of the drain plug and what I wiped off of it with the shop towel. No water came out and there weren’t too many wear products on the magnet. Gear oil never really smells great though…
Next up, let’s look at the front differential (last changed 10,000 miles ago):
The truck is normally in rear-wheel drive so the front differential put very little on the magnet and the oil looked almost new.
Let’s move onto the engine air filter (once again, 10,000 miles):
All of those desert trail miles made themselves very well known with all of the dust I beat out of the filter. The cabin air filter told a similar story:
Last but not least let’s talk about my engine oil sample and draining the filter. When you buy a new filter from Toyota for the 5.7L you receive a drain plug to push into a valve in the filter housing. It always takes a little time for me to get it in their right but it’s much better than just yanking off the filter housing and having oil go everywhere.
I pulled a big-brained move and almost let all of the oil drain out of the pan before remembering to grab my sample bottle. Here’s what the kit looks like after you remove the packaging and take the sample:
I’ve compiled a short video of some of the more interesting (and scary) driving techniques that I’ve observed in San Diego over the last few months. Bad things happen when you: tailgate, drive too fast for slick roads, never yield, and in general drive like a jagoff. Unlike the majority of bad driving compilations that you’ll find online this is actually original content from my own dashcam (SpyTec A119). Maybe there’s something that you or someone you know can learn and take away from this short video. Or perhaps you’ll simply get a few laughs out of it. Either way, enjoy!
During February a large cold front passed through California and brought an unusual amount of snow to the mountains east of San Diego with snow level down to about 2000 feet. I decided to head east on I-8 and up towards Sunrise Highway/Mount Laguna to see what kind of chaos the roads would be in due to a few inches of snow. The freeway was full of people: stuck on the side of the road, in the middle of the road, motorist driving with their hazard lights on continuously, heavy trucks that hit each other, and seemingly confirmed all of the bad driving tropes about Southern California. Sunrise Highway (S-1) offered a far different experience and was almost empty. I passed very few other motorists and only a single stuck vehicle. The snow was coming down harder, the temperature was lower, and I had an amazing time up on Mount Laguna.
I stopped around the peak at Mount Laguna to throw some snowballs and take a few photos. All was quite, all was calm, and all was cold that night on Mount Laguna. There were CHP Officers at the southern end of Sunrise Highway who stopped anyone who either: drove a car without chains installed or had a 4×4 truck without chains with them. Usually when there’s a few inches of snow it’s too crowded to head up to the Laguna Range but the heavy storm kept most away. It was a wonderful time and I hope that you enjoy the videos!
I browse through a lot of automotive videos on YouTube and one of the more idiotic ones I’ve stumbled upon recently are videos of diesel truck owners who have voided their warranty with stupid powertrain “upgrades” and roll coal on various groups, including police officers. In a large portion of the clips the cop is talking to a motorist that’s been pulled over simply happens to be behind one of these idiots who feel like holding their camera phone out while driving or recording their face and then proceeding to act like complete morons. I suppose that when you have brain damage it seems like a good idea to roll coal on the motorcycle cops that just pulled you over…
Derp, “Fuck the police.” “‘Murica!!!” Oh my, what a smart individual.
It is simply amazing how some of these dumb-shit truck owners feel like they alone own the road and can do whatever they want. These imbecilic drivers want attention and well after rolling enough coal, voiding a lot of warranties, and acting like a bunch of jackasses they have plenty of attention. For one example, a New Jersey State Assemblyman by the name of Tim Eustace had coal rolled on him by some idiot as he was driving his Nissan Leaf down the freeway. Shortly thereafter New Jersey passed a bill specifically banning the practice of rolling coal. It’s already a violation of the Clean Air Act to remove or otherwise disable emission equipment installed from the factory (a few of these trucks were probably build before emissions equipment became standard on diesel trucks in the mid-2000s) but all these idiots are doing is bringing more of what should be unwanted attention to themselves. It’s not enough to roll coal at a show, they have to do it to a random cop standing on the side of the street. Similar laws have passed more recently in Maryland and Colorado as well.
Aside from the Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal numerous other companies have received fines for either selling, installing, or operating street trucks with inoperative/removed emissions equipment. Here are a few articles with multiple examples to illustrate my point:
“20. In response to the Request for Information, Respondent provided invoices and other information indicating that between August 5, 2015, and December 30, 2016, Respondent modified emission controls, including DPFs, EGRs, and/or the SCRs on 22 HDD trucks, and Respondent installed defeat devices on each vehicle to modify the Engine Control Module. Itt the response, Respondent also included additional invoices demonstrating that Respondent was beginning to make repairs and reinstallations of the modified vehicles. Respondent also included invoices and other documentation demonstrating breakdowns and other issues associated with the Engine Control Module that trucks within Respondent’s fleet had experienced in the years preceding Respondent’s installation of the defeat devices.”
“24. On May 8, 2017, Respondent reported to EPA that emission controls have been reinstalled on 21 affected trucks and all defeat devices have been correspondingly removed. Respondent reported that the one remaining vehicle had been sold prior to EPA’s enforcement action and therefore is unable to reinstall the controls.”
“27. Based on analysis of the factors specified in Section 205(c) of the CAA, 42 U.S.C. § 7524(c), consideration of the EPA’s Clean Air Act Mobile Source Civil Penalty Policy, dated January 2009, the facts of this case, Respondent’s cooperation and prompt return to compliance, Complainant has determined that an appropriate civil penalty to settle this action is $50,000. Respondent agrees to pay this civil penalty. 28. Within 30 calendar days after the effective date of this CAFO, Respondent must pay $12,500 of the civil penalty by sending a cashier’s or certified check, payable to “Treasurer, United States of America,” to: U.S. EPA Fines and Penalties Cincinnati Finance Center P.O. Box 979077 St. Louis, Missouri 63197-9000 Respondent shall pay the remaining $37,500 of the civil penalty within 180 days of the effective date of this CAFO using the same method.”
So not only did this company have to pay a fine, they were also awarded the joy of re-installing all of the emissions equipment that they had removed (I’m willing to bet that they didn’t keep any of the parts they removed either). That must have been an insightful and fun-filled experience for the Freerksen Trucking Company. Perhaps some of these joyous deezul pickup drivers could tone it down and save their antics for private property, a track, or a show? Or perhaps they’ll just keep bringing the spotlight down on themselves and anyone else who drives a truck (gas or diesel).