Well, all that snow you see in the picture above melted, and of course flooded into my garage, so, spent New Years Eve day installing a sump pump in my garage to keep it dry.
01/03/05 Had a few hours and a warm garage, so I primered and painted my troop roof brackets, metal bed reflector rings, and some small miscellaneous brackets. Can’t wait to dive in and start grinding and cutting.
Finally it warmed up enough and was clear out. I pushed the truck outside and straightened up the garage and began the removal of the bed. Taking out the six bolts took about an hour and a half, snapped three of them and drilled one stubborn one out. Using a combination of straps and muscle I lifted the bed from the frame. With my sons help I rolled the truck out from under it and then set it down on saw horses. While the truck was outside I scraped all the loose dirt and road tar accretions off the frame. The gas tank is in mint shape, still green!
02/5-6/05 Cleaned and adjusted the emergency brake. Began work on the tailgate, welded, pounded and straightened and pounded again. Looking better and better. Minor work on the axe for the pioneer rack, and painted the first aid kit.
02/13/05 Started cutting on the bed, was at the store to buy steel when I saw a trailer fender, the same gauge as the fender I needed to replace, a pre shaped piece of steel that was only $15! Cut out the old section (see picture on photo page) using my jigsaw and a fine tooth metal blade, cut a patch out of the new fender, and after much grinding and fitting started to tack and weld it in place.
Bought my seat covers from WeeBee Webbing, Started installing those. Can’t believe its still so cold. Replaced the parking brake band. Nice reproduction from Second Armored.
April 1st, first chance I have had to work on the truck bed, spent the day cutting out the rusted sections and welding in new steel. One more wheel well to go and it’s off to the blaster.
April 2nd- well the April fool’s joke was that I woke up to snow on the ground here in Chardon. So I made the best of the day and removed the fuel tank from the truck and sloshed it around and poured out the brownish red fuel, lots of particulate in it, cleaned it out.
April 6th, Painted the gas tank, and a few odds and ends, ammo boxes, tailgate chains. Work continues on the bed, I think I found a source for the rear cargo box cross member that is rusted out.
April 8th, installed fuel gauge sender and oil pressure sender, see the techniques portion for more info and photos.
May 4, 5 Some time to work at last, Finished stripping the frame, primed and painted. Sanded and primed the front fenders, see before and after photo on he photo page. Oh, my air compressor seized up on me today, always something to keep me occupied.
May 6. perfect weather for painting, low humidity, and warm temp, so I painted my fenders, headlight guards, inner fenders, bolts, gas can, AB 243 antenna mount. Now I can’t wait to get the bed out of the garage and to the sand blaster! While the paint was drying, I installed the gas tank, rear tail lights, and new exhaust system.
May 12-13 Installed front fenders, headlight buckets, front marker assemblies, and blackout drive light. Grill Guard, fender welting and inner splash shields installed.
May 14 Installed new electric fuel pump. See techniques for details. Constructed a front wiring harness and ran all wiring into cab. Began construction of the rear wiring harness, ran out of wire though, used almost 200’feet of wire so far, all 14 gauge. Working on a schematic of my wiring diagram to assist me in making all the right connections.
May 20,21,22 Attended the Findlay Ohio, Armed Forces Day. Very nice weekend, great remembrance of those who served in our Armed Forces. Came back with NOS Bed Stakes, WW2 Shovel, brass data plates, straps, R-49/TRC-8 Radio set, and a few misc. items.
Blitz week, this was the week I was going to get the bed of the truck done…..unfortunately the truck had other ideas…..
June 2-5 time out for a trip to WW2 weekend at the Mid Atlantic Air Museum….worth it!
June 6th replaced the oil pan, bell housing, and all lower gaskets, Replaced my military oil pump with a civilian pump given to me by another m37 aficionado, replaced the distributor, fired it up- nothing happened, tinkered with timing, for a long time, finally got it fired up and running….BUT on only four cylinders, so, I started checking everything again, determined it was a stuck valves, ordered a new head gasket from NAPA.
June 7th, pulled the head, cleaned all the soot and grime off the cylinder, and scoured the cylinder head, painted it while it was off, replaced the head, torqued everything down, replaced all the parts I removed, and fired it up- no start, I cracked the distributor cap while working on the truck… ordered a replacement, Decided to let it and myself cool down.
June 8th, applied all my stencils on the front half of the truck. The stencils look great, the paint masks were made by Rick Larsen at Military Stencils. See the photo page for a picture.
June 9th, the distributor cap came in, installed it, truck fired up, timed it as best I could, fairly smooth running!
July 9th Finally got the truck registered as an Historical Vehicle in the State of Ohio!!!
Work continues on a variety of small things, on of which was the replacement of the brand new fuel pump, it burned out for some strange reason.
In the first week of August, I installed a NOS Rifle mount in the front of the vehicle, and I installed a NOS military radio speaker in the truck, I wanted to be able to play CD’s in the truck, period music, so I wired in a 44 watt amplifier into the truck under the passenger seat with an input from a standard portable CD player. I hid a standard car speaker behind the passenger as well.
Sept 7th Finally, the bed is sent off to the sandblaster!!! now I am getting all the bed stakes and troop seats ready for installation.
Sept 16 the bed is back from the Sand blaster, spent the night and most of Saturday finish filling the myriad pits and scratches picked up from the sand blaster. Late Saturday night I began laying down the finish coat on the bed.
Sept 19-23 Took the whole week off of work to finish the bed and all bed accessories. Mated the cargo box to the frame, made new body mount pads from 1/2″ truck flaps. Planed all the oak for the troop seats, bed rails and head ache rack. Finished all the wood with Varathane. Painted all bed hardware and installed it all. Mounted the rear fenders and fender welting. Took it for a test drive on Thursday. Friday, mounted pioneer rack, spare tire mount, and spare tire.
Sept 24th, afternoon My son and I take the truck for a longer drive, after about 2.5 miles, the fuel pump I installed (the SECOND ONE!) dies, towed us back with my Dodge Ram.
Sept 25th, I replace the alternator with a single wire model, 63amps, I think the old alternator was producing way to much voltage, and burned up the fuel pump. Replaced fuel pump with a new version. A ‘Master’ fuel pump Model Number E80112S. Test drove truck, found out right rear brake cylinder leaked, took apart, honed and replaced internals.
Sept 26th, finished applying all the stencils to the truck, and it looks GREAT!!
Sept 28 Received replacement front springs from Cabell Garbee and mounted them in the truck on October 7-8, found out my drivers side springs had 3 broken leafs, and the passenger side had 1, gained 3″ in front ride height! Thanks Cabell.