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Thread: Mazda Pickup Project

  1. #201
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
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    Bognor
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    511
    What an absolute nightmare the steering has turned into !!
    I just wanted to replace the ball joints to make the non-power steering feel nice and smooth ... But NO !

    I spent the best part of two days and destroyed a breaker bar trying to undo the bolt on the bottom of the steering box.
    But after buying a new breaker bar and using two 8' long scaffold poles I finally got the nut undone ...

    Then whilst trying to remove the arm from the splines, I got a bit hammer crazy, and broke the cast metal casing that all the workings are held within... Oil spills out everywhere ...


    So then I finally manage to cut the arm off, clean up and metal glue back together the housing (can't imagine it's going to last) .... To then realise ..

    The new bit is the wrong f**king size !!!!


    So I've wasted £100 on bits that either don't fit it all or are left handed not right so won't fit properly.
    And wasted two days to achieve nothing other than destroying my steering box !!!!



    I dunno whether to get another arm from Mazda main dealer (if they're even still available) regardless of the cost. And then simply hope that a glued together steering box will hold up to usage

    Or do I just go for the power steering upgrade now, rather than 'some point in the future'...

  2. #202
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Valhalla
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    4,623
    I feel your woes!

    Fucking old trucks, fuck em.

  3. #203
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Bognor
    Posts
    511
    Well these problems with the steering have totally killed my enthusiasm for this project ...
    It kinda just made me realise I have no idea what I'm doing. I found myself standing in the garage just pondering what to do, yet again!

    "I cant bolt the cab down until I have the spacers" "I cant start the back half until I've got the steering back in, to turn it around" "I cant put the steering back in until I get a new pitman arm" "I don't wanna buy genuine pitman arm if the steering box will just brake" "I'm not smart enough to do power steering upgrade"

    So lets go back to interior ! but:
    "I cant put the sound deadening/carpet back in until I run the wiring" "I cant put the dash in until the carpets in" "I cant do anything until I've aligned and drilled holes for the mounting bolts" FFS !



    Then I decided: Stop Telling myself what I cant do, and just get on with something ! Make some progress!


    So I bolted on the 'left hand drive' idler arm, despite it being at slightly the wrong angle.
    This supported the tracking bar (half of it at least)
    Then bolted on all four track rod ends.
    Did the tracking (by eye)

    So then I decided to put the torsion bar suspension back in (to replace my wooden struts )...
    I adjusted it by 2 notches/splines before putting them back in. I'm sure I'll want to go lower by the time its finished but I thought it'd be best to not go too crazy while its still in fabrication stages lol



    Already the steering components look like they're going to collide with the control arms. Which is bad news obviously, but a relief I didn't waste days trying to get the steering sorted prematurely.



    So with half the steering back in place, me and a friend dragged it out and turned it around !
    It's finally time to make a start on the back half !!!

    First job; chipping away 20 odd years worth of farm crap !
    IMG_1520.jpg


    Amongst the crud and crap I found another nest !
    Mother and three little babies, dried to a crisp
    IMG_1517.jpg
    I screamed like a little girl when I realised what it was I had in my hand


    Then it was time to crawl back underneath! (No mucking about this time though, bed's coming straight off)
    IMG_1519.jpg
    (is it just me, or is that a really half arsed way to put a brand new brake pipe across the rear axle)

    "Heeeere we go again" I thought to myself, with enthusiasm dwindling. Rolling around in piles of dirt, dust and rust with half of it constantly in my eyes... Why am I doing this ?!



    Then I glanced towards the front of the truck:
    IMG_1523.jpg

    And thought "It'll all be worth it in the end"

  4. #204
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    North Devon
    Posts
    17,856
    Yeah, it'll be worth it - just keep plugging on.

    If you've any doubts just go back to the start of the thread and realise how far you have come, all projects get to this stage, and lesser souls give up.

  5. #205
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Bognor
    Posts
    511
    Update time!

    Last weekend I got a couple of mates to help me lift the bed off, which was surprisingly heavy !!

    Just 8 bolts holding the bed to the chassis, disconnect the fuel filler cap, and then unplug the wires to the rear lights... And off it comes!


    Which exposed a lot of dirt, grime and rust...

    IMG_1535.jpg



    So then it was time to break out the new grinder and get to wire-wheeling it to death...

    But there are so many parts of the chassis that are so difficult to get to with a grinder, so more things had to be removed.

    Driveshaft came off easy enough with better access... but everything else like the dampers, fuel filters, spare wheel bracket and fuel tank are all attached with 'butter bolts' and prefer to just snap off the heads rather than coming undone...


    Then there are the countless exhaust hangers and unnecessary brackets ! loads of them ! and huge !

    IMG_1540.jpg



    Thoroughly aggravated with the still restricted access, I decided it was time to put the spanners down, and break out the cutting disk...

    Cut, off, EVERYTHING !!

    IMG_1554.jpg


    Turns out there's not a lot left once you cut everything off

    But now I've got a nice blank canvas to start from... And a pile of parts that are going to have to be cleaned up, replaced or made from scratch

  6. #206
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    Mar 2010
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    It'll be worth the effort IR, keep up the work.

  7. #207
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Bognor
    Posts
    511
    Not a lot been happening at all, besides working to pay bills :/


    But I've been thinking about how I'm going to lower the back of the truck. And of course the dream is to have air ride, but realistically, there's a new Forza motorsport and Xbox coming out later this year, and that means I'm going to need a new TV too. That's not going to be cheap.

    So Air-Ride is out the window for the mean time...


    I'm against the idea of using lowering blocks because I imagine it would mess with the suspension geometry/characteristics.

    So rather than lifting the axle higher from the leaf springs (with blocks), can I just move the spring higher in relation to the chassis ? (by drilling a new mounting hole)

    IMG_1552.jpg

    I'm thinking I can just make another hole higher up for the spring to mount.

    Any reasons I shouldn't ? Any better ideas ?

  8. #208
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    in wiffy viral quarantine
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    15,277
    Quote Originally Posted by InferdRhythm View Post
    new Forza motorsport and Xbox coming out later this year, and that means I'm going to need a new TV too.
    Priorities man!! nobody ever got rust in their eye playing an xbox!!!


    Amazing how little there is chassis rail wise with it all cleaned up.... looks feeble and tiny!!

    Great work as always though

  9. #209
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Bognor
    Posts
    511
    Soooooooo....

    Minimal, but essential progress has made this weekend just gone...

    Wiped it all down with a rag soaked in kurust:

    IMG_1602.jpg

    (^probably not the best thing to use^)
    But being a tight-ass, I wasn't going to buy anything 'proper' to use, and it seemed like the best thing to get all the rust dust off




    Then chucked a nice thick lick of chassis paint over the whole lot:

    IMG_1603.jpg
    Aaaaahhhh, that's better ! lol




    Just before taking the angle grinder to the bed, I noticed that the bulkhead(?) seemed to be bolted in.

    And would you believe, it actually came unbolted !!! Without any of the little f*ckers snapping !:

    IMG_1607.jpg



    So then got the bed flipped upside down (without a rotisserizer !)

    IMG_1608.jpg


    Aaaaaand, as expected.... Rotten ! lol

    IMG_1606.jpg

    In the middle of this pic, There's supposed to be some big hunk of metal that supports the mud guard and supports the bodywork that is the outside of the bed.





    I've decided I'm going to use the tipping mechanism from a transit, because its easiest to get hold of..

    But I still haven't fully worked out how I'm going to fit it between the chassis and the bed, without raising the bed (ruining the body lines)
    Last edited by InferdRhythm; 12-07-2017 at 10:20 PM. Reason: Spelling, like a 5 year old

  10. #210
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Valhalla
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    Looking ace, well done on the effort.

  11. #211
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Bognor
    Posts
    511
    Been doing a lot more head scratching recently, pondering over how I'm going to convert this into a tipper without compromising the game plan:

    - Its got to keep the original bed. (custom/different one look stupid)
    - Its got to be in its original position. (would look stupid if it was lifted)
    - Must be strong enough to tip over a ton
    - Must be light enough to not reduce load capacity (by too much)
    - Must be removable
    - Original mounting points must be retained (encase things go to shit)

    So I need to design and make a tipper mechanism that fits into this gap:
    IMG_1520_LI.jpg

    I've got a bit of a plan in my head but there are so many problems still to solve

    So in an attempt to keep momentum going I decided to remove the bed rails/beams/joists/supports. They're rotting away, and they provided no support from back to front, So they've got to go!

    Started off with the angle grinder:
    IMG_1633.jpg


    Which seemed to work pretty well, but got REALLY tedious after like 30 spot welds!
    IMG_1635.jpg


    So I thought I'd do the sensible thing and go and get some spot weld drill bits,
    But I caused just as much, if not more damage to the bed floor which is the bit I'm trying to save
    IMG_1641.jpg


    And finally, I eventually, tediously removed almost 300 spot-welds
    IMG_1652.jpg


    I've left the two in the middle because with all of the supports, the bulkhead and the tailgate removed, its all become rather flexible.

    I've also left the original mounting points in place for the mean time because I haven't worked out how I'm going to preserve the exact location yet :/

    Still much thinking to be done

  12. #212
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    Mar 2010
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    How’s this progressing ?

  13. #213
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Bognor
    Posts
    511
    Quote Originally Posted by Elroy View Post
    How’s this progressing ?
    Its not

    After removing all the supports from the bed it became kind of like a giant metal drum .... And two days of non stop angle grinding caused a few threatening complaints which really killed my motivation.

    Then I bought the new Xbox and a monster of a TV, and I've been struggling to pay my bills since

    And business has been so busy I haven't been able to take January off like I normally do...



    But once the taxman's been paid I should be able to start buying some box steel and start building. I think I've got a bit of a game plan worked out now, just need the time and money



    Its been sat like this for nearly half a year now:
    IMG_1717.jpg

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