I’ve been thinking about vehicle security this spring, as the top is about to come back off and I’ll be parking Peer Pressure all around town. Being an American vehicle of 70’s vintage, it would be childishly simple to hot-wire and steal, especially as a convertible. I’ve considered mechanical methods of theft protection like a fuel cutoff or battery cutoff switch, but given the delicate nature of 40-year-old electronics I’m a little hesitant to go digging around in the wire harnesses until I’m ready to rewire the entire truck.
There is another way, and it’s something that might take care of several issues at once. Grant sells a steering wheel security kit which basically works like a removable-face stereo: once you’re parked, you disengage the steering wheel and take it with you. This would be advantageous because it would also allow for me to get into the steering wheel and fix a broken turn signal canceling switch and swap the full-size steering wheel out for a smaller diameter sport wheel (which will be required once I put PT Cruiser seats in). This link on the Binder Planet shows the system in action, and while I think I’d go with a different wheel, I like the look of the whole thing.
Here’s a great thread on the Binder Planet about D44 Rear Disc Brake installation where the bracket was welded onto the axle flange. Further down in the thread there’s a parts list for a bolt-on solution, which is more my speed, but the combined price list is about $700.
Colorado Mike has been feeding me steady updates on his resto project via text. The other day he asked me for paint advice, and I sent him my collection of IH paint codes for the entire Scout II run. He’s leaning towards Lexington Blue, a bright shade offered in 1979. It got me thinking about the distant future, when I can strip Peer Pressure down to the metal, POR-15 everything, and paint it in a more pleasing color. Originally I wanted a shade of English green, but Mr. Scout has that one covered. My second choice is a color from the Scout in a movie called “Fools Rush In”. Based on the grille pattern, it’s a ’75 or a ’76, which could only make the color Glacier Blue (it’s the only light blue offered in the ’74-’77 timespan). Looking at the paint chip, it’s a light, flat blue which looks too powdery at first glance.
It could be the film transfer, the lighting, or wear and tear on the truck, but the blue here looks darker to me.
The other candidate is a shade called Bimini Blue Poly, which is a darker blue with candyflake. I can’t find a good example online, but I’ll keep looking.
Nothing much to report around here. I dug out three spare wiper motors and brought them inside to the bench for winter work. The Scout was out for a brief errand this afternoon before the rain and wind hits. I put the top on tight, rolled up the windows, and battened down the garage, hoping that Sandy passes us by.
With Finn’s help, I was able to pull the new bumper off and replace it with the original on Saturday. I also mixed up a little bondo and filled some of the larger holes and valleys on the swingarm, as well as the exploratory divot I made in the bondo skim on the driver’s door.
The mirror came in on Friday, and it looks great; I shot the mounting bracket with primer and let it sit to dry. I need a #107/5mm steel bit to drill mounting holes, and then I can tap them for the included screws.
While I was out there I also took the soft top bows apart; they’re looking rusty and beat up. The lever bracket is the worst, so I hit it with the flap sander. All of the mounting bolts are stripped, rusty, and worn, so I picked up stainless steel replacements at the store. When I wire wheel the bumper I’ll hit the ends of the bows themselves and then POR-15 everything that’s bare metal; then I’ll shoot it all with the same semi-gloss black I’m using for the bumper.
Thinking about Jen driving the Scout got me to thinking; the RPM band is a lot lower in Peer Pressure than it is in our Honda, and it would be great to have some indication for shifting (instead of by feel). Tiny-Tach makes a tachometer that installs simply by wrapping a wire lead around one of the spark plugs and grounding the other; it’s a little ugly but the price is good. Plus, there isn’t as much guesswork with installation as with a mechanical tach.
I picked up some basic lug nuts for the tire carrier this morning. Last weekend I got 10 minutes and cut one of the three bolts off the mounting plate (the one that was angled inwards) and test fit the spare; it’s tight but it will work.
Mr. Scout is going to bring my original bumper standoffs back from Chestertown this Friday, and I’m going to swap out the new bumper for the old so that I can put it on some stands and get it cleaned, encapsulated, primed, and painted. I have to pick up a little bondo and some JASCO Prep and Prime from the ACE this weekend. It’s supposed to etch the metal, encapsulate and convert surface rust into a zinc oxide finish. Then a little bondo work to fill in any holes, some basic sanding, and then etching primer.
Edit: Jasco Prep and Prime isn’t carried by ACE anymore, or Lowe’s, as far as I can tell. It shows up in searches on their website but it’s unavailable for web purchase. My local ACE tells me they can’t order it from their warehouse.
We’ve got plans to go see some friends this weekend, starting with a junkyard expedition somewhere on the east side of town. A fellow gearhead (with British and German proclivities) spotted a yard while driving with his daughter and asked if I’d like to go scope it out. While I’m there, I’m going to be looking for a good Astro van so that I can pull the entire brake booster assembly in order to do a Hydroboost conversion on Peer Pressure. When that might actually happen, I don’t know, but I’d like to have the parts for it stashed aside.
Update: Only one Astro was located, and the booster assembly was rusty enough that I passed on it.
This post on the Binder Planet talks specifically about a problem I’m having with my gas gauge, and has steps to fix the problem. Now, to find an incandescent test light.
Here’s another good update:
There’s only one wire from the gauge to the sender. This is the signal wire. It’s not a positive wire; it will however, show what I call “ghost positive” using a test light. It will appear as a slow flashing at the test light. This “ghost positive” is the CVR power flowing through the guage itself to ground. I call it ghost positive because it’s not really there. You will see the same thing in a two wire light bulb circuit with an open ground wire. Positive is present at one side the bulb but has no place to go; so if you hook a test light to the open ground wire side of the bulb, it will look like that’s a positive wire, it’s not, it’s a ghost. I used to think gauges were smarter than light bulbs but they’re not. The useful thing about this flashing ghost at your signal wire is that it does tell you that you actually have the signal wire, it is making its way to the guage and your CVR is working.
The signal this wire carries is a ground signal to which the gauge responds based on ohms of resistance in the signal. As I said, the sending unit provides variable resistance to ground. It does this via a wiper connected to the float. As the float moves up and down the amount of resistance to ground in the signal changes from 73 ohms when the tank is empty and the float arm is all the way down to 10 ohms resistance when the tank is full and the float arm is all the way up. This is why when you connect the signal wire to a 00 ground, the gauge pegs over “F”.
Update: Here are some other good posts on the subject:
…the ammeter gauge has a direct battery feed. That’s why its still working. The other gauges all receive power from the fuse block when the ignition switch is in the ON or ACC positions through circuit 28. This wire runs to the plastic gang plug and becomes 28A which is connected to the multi-pin on the back of the OIL/TEMP printed circuit board (PCB). From there it runs through a small, rectangular device screwed to the back of that PCB called a constant voltage regulator (CVR). This device regulates the 12 volts into an average of 5 volts which will display as a pulsing light when probed with an incandescent test light. From there it passes back through the gang plug as 28B which daisy chains over to the gang plug on the back of the ALT/FUEL PCB. One must be very careful when disconnecting those plastic gang connectors as the pins are very delicate and easily loosened/dislodged from the PCB. The other common issue with these gauges is the stamped steel nuts that secure the individual gauges to the PCB’s work loose and the ground is lost. Best fix is to replace them with brass nuts, but at the least you need to make sure the steel nuts are snug. Now you have the current path for the instruments, so you should be able to trace it out with your test probe.
…I was wondering if anyone knows the proper wiring of the fuel sender on a 1973 scout II with a new plastic 19 gallon tank the PO put in. I have a brown wire on the center screw ” I’m assuming this is the signal wire to the gauge” a red wire with a blade connector attached to the top side of the fuel sender ” My Manual says ground” and an extra black wire with a blade connector going nowhere “was this added for some kind of ground because its a plastic tank?” I read a bunch of other threads and they seem to say the red is the signal going back to the gauge and the brown being ground, but my manual, if I’m reading it correctly says the opposite and there is no mention of an extra black wire. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks
The center pin is the one that goes to the gauge. The spade connectors are for the sender ground and the tank ground. The sender needs the ground to complete the circuit and the tank needs a ground to prevent static build up since it is plastic. To determine which wire is the one that goes to the gauge get an incandescent test light. Connect it to a good ground and with the ignition on test the wires. The one going to the gauge should make the light blink.
And here’s a very simple, perfect bit of info:
The wire in the center is the wire from the gauge. The other wire towards the edge is a ground. A steel tank is grounded to the frame, so it’s not critical, but if there is a lot of rust, it’s better to have a ground on the sender.
I have studying to do.
Last week was a good one for Peer Pressure. She spent Monday to Thursday on the road with the top down and I had a smile on my face all week.
This Saturday she hauled 60 cubic feet of mulch from the Middle School to our lawn with no complaints. Finn spent half the afternoon playing in the driver’s seat while I raked and mulched next to the driveway. Finn has declared the rear bed is her dance party room.
I got a call late Sunday from a guy I’ve bought parts from before; he needs a pair of Terra windows for his son’s project and it just so happens I’ve got a pair sitting in the garage. His son is going to convert a full travel top Scout to a Terra, will most likely be getting rid of his top, and would I be interested in it if he does?
Sure, I would.
So thinking about some of the issues we’ve seen with Brian’s bumper and the sag in the hinge has us thinking. In my post on the Binder Planet, I put out the call for other hinge alternatives, and we got some information about this hinge setup. It’s meant for a top-mount system, but Brian and I talked over an alternative that would work if we can find someone with a metal brake to fab it up for us:
It’s a C-shaped piece with two holes drilled for the hinge sleeve, and a third tab added in the center for extra rigidity. It gets mounted to the face of the bumper, then the sleeve is welded inside the holes, and none of the geometry of the bumper needs to be altered.