MiniBuild 19 ~ Shop Travelette

Discussion in 'D and C Extreme' started by Damian Grihalva, Apr 15, 2009.


  1. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    Well folks. Its ThanksGiving ~ so HAPPY THANKS GIVING! As I'm not working today, I thought I'd do what I normally do when I have nothing else to do. I dream and plan on what I'm going to do to my rigs.

    Recently, I've been thinking more and more about my Travelette. I say 'recently' with some qualifiers. Years ago, after coming back from SEMA Show 2007. I presented the then BinderBulletin group with a poll ~ located here: http://www.binderplanet.com/forums/showthread.php?t=74551

    At the beginning of the poll, the votes were decidedly for lifting the t-ette. However, sometime after that, popular opinion shifted, and by the the poll stopped, the votes were 23 for lifting, 25 for lowering. I'm sure now that I've resurrected the thread, this will change.

    Anyway. I've been doing some thinking. Since that time, I've been keeping my plans secret. Having one t-ette plan stolen, built, and wrecked ~ I didn't want someone ~ again ~ copying my thoughts. But seeing as I've let my thoughts out to some since then, and having their current build plans somewhat mirror what I want to do ~ I figure to 'heck' with keeping it a secret. I'm going to share what I've got slotted for my T-ette and I think its going to surprise many.

    Concept drawing.
    [​IMG]

    Theme: No bling ~ ALL BUSINESS.
    That's my t-ette. Stock(ish) height ~ maybe extremely slightly lifted. And those aren't slightly oversized rims, no dinky 17 or 18s. The plans are either 22.5 or 24.5" big-rig wheels. Crazy? yes. With low-profile tires, I can get them to 35.5" total height with body work I can open the fenders to fit the tires with very little lift.

    Oh, and yes ~ your eyes aren't playing tricks on you ~ its a dually. It'll be a bagged dually with big-rig wheels and low-profile tires.
    Keeping with a 'Chip Foose' mentality ~ which is to make something completely custom that looks like it could have come that way ~ The body mods will obviously be all IH. I want it to look 'factory' but not be. The rear doors will be suicide(d) to open backwards. It'll be changed to a long-bed via a new chassis. As IH never (to my knowledge) made a long-bed dually that wasn't either a service or flat-bed. I will be picking up a standard long-bed, as well as a standard 'step-side' bed. The fenders from the step-side bed will be grafted to the long bed to make what (I believe) will be one-of-one fully IH longbed dually-flared bed. Again, sticking with the 'could have come that way, but probably never did' theme.

    Likewise, the engine will remain completely IH. Although I'd like to be able to afford a completely custom 392, chances are it'll simply be a standard 392 with the DUI and TBI conversion on it. Trans will be a TF727, and yes, I'm converting it to 4wd.

    The interior will be custom and awesome. But I'll be keeping those details to myself.
     
  2. Rascus

    Rascus Farmall Cub

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    Like the concept drawing. The truck looks pretty good, I could easily see it going high or low.
     
  3. Jeff Jamison

    Jeff Jamison Lives in an IH Dealership

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    I have seen 2 long bed dually trucks that where factory,they were both long bed step side,IH made adaptors(I was told,never looked up in parts book)that bolted to the bed,then the fenders bolted to themThey where about 10 inches wide.My 75 travelette had dualys at one time,but had an 80's ford bed on it.I like your concept with the exception of the low pro tires and wheels.To rough of a ride for me.I would do 16 or 17 inch wheels,but its your truck
    Jeff
     
  4. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    You have to understand, a 35.5-36" tire diameter on 22-24" rims would give a good 5" of side wall ~ which should smooth out the ride. Plus it'll be air-bag'd ~ so that should help too. Also. I've done some searching, and you're correct. The big complaint among 'big-rig' wheeled full-sized trucks is the ride of the tires. The 22.5 and even some 19.5 inch tires are simply built for BIG loads, and our relatively small/light rigs don't have enough weight to cushion the hard sidewalls. There are companies who modify these rims from 22.5" to 22" to allow passenger-car/truck style tires to be fitted. This eliminates the ultra-hard sidewall compounds/construction of the big-rig tires, and puts some softer 'light-truck' hardness to them. This all, I hope will dampen the stiffness that is common on these style rigs. The biggest problem is that the wheel/tire combos w/ adapters, lug nuts, and center caps will be about $3k +/-. Ouch.

    I haven't seen any dually trucks from the factory (which flares) ~ not to say they didn't exist, goodness knows IH built whatever anyone fancied ~ so it does make some sense that there was at least one that rolled off the factory line.

    I'm not sure I'll go as low as the picture shows. My basic theme is more of a IH version of the F450-F550 SuperDuty that Ford puts out ~ but with some flare in the IH department. I took that picture and added some color to it. Red w/ silver racing stripes. I'll take a pic and post it like the rendering. I'll also put down a picture of one of the trucks that looks the part I'm trying to create in this one.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2009
  5. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    Here is after I put some color to the drawing. The red looks light, but I didn't want to make it too dark. It'll be IH Red (which is a darker red) and the drill, bumpers, racing stripes and lower 6-12" all the way around the truck will be a sliver to mesh with the wheels.
    [​IMG]

    Windows will be blacked out as will the upper door frames between the rain gutter and the bottom of the window. This will give the illusion of one continuous window that will literally wrap around the entire cab. Making the truck look even longer. It'll be cool.

    As for some of the inspiration on the truck, I love the look of this F350. Looking to get something close to the IH version of this rig.
    [​IMG]

    Man, can you imagine rollin' up to an IH event in the IH version of that? Too cool
     
  6. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    Thanks. You having seen the truck up close, know that I've got a very long row to hoe with this one. Wish me luck!

    D

    EDIT: Man o man. I'm really opening up a can of worms on this. Just the initial costs, $3k on rims and tires (not including the axles to push them). And I was just checking on things and the SEATS (aka only the seats) that I'm looking to put in this thing are over $2500 alone. Man. Its going to take a while to build this truck. A long while!
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2012
  7. EZirl

    EZirl Farmall Cub

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    Damian, I would accuse you of stealing my idea but since I never made it public I cant make the accusation stick:D I'm working on making my 74 T'ette into a dually. The idea of fitting OE IH fender flares to my long bed has been my desire from the start. I to wanted to go with the "it could have come that way" look:cool2:

    Actually I'm going a totally different route to achieve dually status - my cab and bed on a Dodge quad cab dually (long before Trucks started theirs I might add). I'm in the process of parting out the dodge to help finance some of the project (if anyone needs a 360/NP435 combo w/ 36K original miles, I have one available) and make room for another parts truck. The plan is to drop in a 5.9 cummins for the ultimate tow rig (all work and NO BLING).

    I love your concept drawing - I've been trying to get the wife to put together one foe me but it seems to be stuck at the bottom of her to-do list:sleep1:
    I'm sure you will finish yours long before I do since I dont have as uch time and $$ as you do:D:D All the best bro:beer: and I cant wait to see the fruits of your labor.
     
  8. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    I'm sure I'm not the first to think of these mods. But with any luck, and between the two of us, we just might see what it'd look like all finished.

    Right now I'm bouncing. I'm got a 4WD late-70s T-ette frame at my disposal. I'm unsure if I want to switch it to a long-bed dually with the standard t-ette cab, or go stay with the short bed and lengthen the cab (behind the rear doors) 1.5'. The thought is then I can move the rear seat back a little, while make it a super-comfy-lazy-boy seat like the front seats, Any extra room behind the seat can be taken by a 3rd-row jump-seat-like cushion to alloy for laying down and sleeping. Basically a MegaCab T-ette. The guy I'm getting the chassis from has plenty of travelalls/t-ettes we can use to make up the extra room.

    As for finishing before you. Don't count on it. Rusty was a 2-year build. Snoopy a 3-year build. This one will out-do them both in terms of fabrication, refinement, paint/body, as well as component costs.

    I've thought really hard on weather or not I wanted a 6BT or something of that nature in there. I admit that its probably a better powerplant, and I've heard the argument that IH put anything a customer wanted in their trucks ~ including other make's engines ~ but something inside tells me a purpose built and high-performance 392 would be more true to the IH emblem. If anything, I'll hit Jeff @ IHON up for a 700R4 swap and end up putting a 4L80E in there instead. After all, the TorqueFlight is a Chrysler made trans ~ so there's no love-lost on ******* it.

    Speaking of which, since I do some work with UPS ~ and have had opportunity to drive one of the newer package cars ~ The 5 or 6-speed automatic's they put in those little monsters has caused my brain to wonder about the possibility of putting one of those in there too.:punk:

    D
     
  9. Jeff Jamison

    Jeff Jamison Lives in an IH Dealership

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    Does this guy have any good 74/75 travelette cabs.Mine is in poor shape,Iam starting to hunt a new cab as my 1/2 ton travelall isnt the best for towing my camper.
    Jeff
     
  10. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    Im sure he does. He's parting out a t-ette that ~ IIRC ~ is in really decent shape ~ I"m getting the long-bed chassis to have blasted and painted for my rig (that's how its becoming a long-bed). Shoot me a PM and I"ll get you his number.
     
  11. Hey Dame, I really can't wait to starting seeing more build ups like yours! The recent interest in the Travelette's finally got me off my butt to pursue on that I always wanted. Here is my little gem. This will be my daily driver as well as my toy hauler. I am really ampped to get rolling on it, but it has been so darn cold so it is hard to get mentally motivated. Anyway keep us up to date on your progress and I will start my own build thread here as well.

    Doyle
    Longmont, Co.
     

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  12. reddevil1111

    reddevil1111 Farmall Cub

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    Doyle, did you buy that from someone in Loveland Co.? Name of Will Marsh?
    It looks like his. ~Dan BTW? you always need to tell the trucks story....we all want to know it! where how much and what you plan to do...:punk:
     
  13. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    Your T-ette's looking good. Can't wait to see some the the T-ette's that guys are building. Should have a little army ~ alright, militia ~ of t-ettes soon.
     
  14. Hey Red Devil, no I found it on Craigslist out of Caldwell Idaho from a guy named Eric. He still has a travelette long bed two wheel drive and many other trucks and travelall's. If anybody is interested bump me and I will get your number to him.

    Thanks
    Doyle
     
  15. benjamin7

    benjamin7 Farmall Cub

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    Just wanted to say thanks for everything that you document on this site. It's helped me with direction and purpose for my scout II. Very cool stuff man!
    But just so you know, you have gotten my wife fighting with me... I've been reading your buildups and man oh man! I can't stop reading them some times! My wife has started to ask "are you looking at your scout porn again?"... I just shake my head and keep reading! :D
     
  16. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    You know, that's one of the key purposes of my builds ~ helping people see and understand what I do, why I do it, and how it works for me. I have to say that I'm glad they are working. Just need to get back on the T-ette! Its parked for the moment as the holidays kept me EXTREMELY busy. Finally caught a break two weeks ago and hope to see some major progress on the Scouts that have been collecting dust for the past 3 months!

    Oh ~ and sorry about the wife thing ~ there are many guys here that know EXACTLY what you're talking about ~ myself included.
     
  17. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    Well you guys are right, its been way to long since I've updated my builds. So lets get started shall we?

    We last saw the T-ette after some mild/moderate tuning. The gain was about 9% in mpgs. Now lets take a look at what the truck will do on the freeway.
    [​IMG]

    During my 'break' from the builds, I found a GPS unit my wifey got me over 3 years ago. So I'll be using that to track mileage and other things about the trip (since my speedo is a little off).
    [​IMG]
    You need at least 4 satellites for a GPS to work. Here's the beginning screen. I've got plenty. Lets roll.

    So I planned a trip down to Pueblo for the first 'highway' mileage test. Remember, these will be a base-line for me ~ we still need to do an oil-change and do the plugs and wires before we make the official run, but still, lets see what happens.

    First step, since my fuel gauge is on the fritz, make sure we have plenty to make the trip.
    [​IMG]

    Gotta love the spillage the T-ette always leaves.
    [​IMG]

    Topping off with about 5 gallons, its time to go.
    [​IMG]

    Although this is not the official trip, I do want to make sure that I got a good idea of what to expect. So I kept track of the cross-town mileage. From here, its all highway.
    [​IMG]

    And with the speedo nailed at 60mph (GPS read 66), I was the first leg.
    [​IMG]

    At 48.87 miles, I reached my destination.
    [​IMG]
    As you can see, the max speed on the trip is 73.7mph (didn't know my truck goes that fast as smoothly as I was chuggin along). What I'm looking at is the average moving speed vs. the average over-all speed. Frankly, the close they get, the more accurate the outcome. Meaning, you'd expect them to be different if we were in town all the time (since you're stopping and starting constantly) ~ but on the highway ~ if you were truly on the highway only, they'd be extremely close. Here we see about a 7.5mph difference...showing we had sat at a few red lights.

    At Dons.
    [​IMG]

    Loaded up my loot and started back.
    [​IMG]
     
  18. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    So once I was back, I pulled up to the same gas station, and even used the same pump ~ just 2.5 hours later. Total mileage:
    [​IMG]
    96.48 total. Moving average was 54.7mph, overall average 48.7mph, with a max speed of 74.9 Something to notice. Notice my elevation: We are 6292 MSL (above sea level) at the gas station ~ now lets bring back the picture at Don's Salvage
    [​IMG]
    Here you see we travelled DOWN to 4706 MSL. Meaning here in Colorado, we traveled DOWN 1586 feet in elevation in less than 50 miles. That's life in Colorado!

    So how much fuel did we use?
    [​IMG]
    Hot dang, I'll be honest, I was hoping for over 10mpg. Yikes.:no: What does this mean?

    An overall mileage of 9.55 ~ that's bad. I say over-all because we had some city mileage in there didn't we... Lets see what the actual mileage was. To that, its going to take another day, and another partial tank of gas. Which I'll post a little later...
     
  19. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    Alright, lets do some math. REMEMBER ~ this is not the official baseline. We have done a half tune-up at this point (points, cap/rotor/ fuel filter, carb cleaner, and such).

    Total miles was 96.48
    Total gas: 10.1
    Total city mile was 13.3 (6.65 x 2)
    Total highway miles 83.18

    I did a little test, and the reported mileage of 9.xx has gone down. Its now about 9mpg.
    So 13.3 miles at 9mpg means I used 1.48 gallons driving to and from the highway.
    THEREFORE the remaining 83.18 miles used 8.62 gallons (10.1-1.48) which is 9.64 miles per gallon on the highway. Still lower than 10mpg. I was hoping for at least 10. Well lets continue this saga.

    Its time to break out the new wires. These were aquired from IHOnly North (www.ihonlynorth.com). Jeff sells them as a DIY kit. They're inexpensive, but they do require some assembly.
    [​IMG]

    Next were the spark plugs. I'll admit, when I went into my local Checker/O'Rielly I asked for the Bosch super expensive things. Then I thought: Wait, what does the guy behind the counter say. So I asked, and he said, 'Standard Autolite's have always done good by me!' ~ so I ditched the $6/plug stuff for these $1-2/plug. We'll see where it goes from there.
    [​IMG]

    As I said before, when we first changed the points/cap/rotor, the mileage spiked to over 9 miles per gallon. But since then, its been less. I wondered why. Then I realized that when I had an ignition failure (lost power) I jumped an old switched 'hot' wire directly to the coil. This gave it full power all the time. So when the engine is running, and my new alternator is pumping out 14-15 volts, that new set of points is eating every last bit of it.

    For those of you who don't know, points aren't normally supposed to eat that much voltage ~ actually it depends on the model. But really, the points can burn up...so I thought, ah crap, I burnt up a new set of points. So I made another call to Jeff @ IHOnly North. And a few days later, I got this:
    [​IMG]

    Inside it, are these...
    [​IMG]
    A replacement set of points (just in case) and that big white thing. The big white thing is called a ballast resistor. They were used in old cars/trucks to help reduce the voltage going to the coil. This kept the points alive longer, and helped prolong the time between tune-ups. With that, I made my way over to Ed's shop. Ed owns a car repair place down below the first D&C shop. We've been friends ever since, and when I told him what I was doing, he said he would lend a hand. So with parts in hand, I made my way over.

    First step was to remove all the plugs and see if there are any problems. I have not pulled the plugs since I bought the t-ette many years ago, and I was wondering what I'd see.
    [​IMG]

    To my surprise, the plugs looked pretty good. Even with the crappy mileage, they were slightly brownish/cream.
    [​IMG]

    Now Ed started talking about plugs, and how impressed he was in the old plugs condition. So I had to ask ~ what's up with the plugs. And that got him talkin.
    [​IMG]
    You can tell alot about how the engine is running by looking at the white ceramic nub that the electrode sticks out of (in the middle of the plug). If its BRIGHT white ~ your too lean. If its black, your too rich. If its corroded up with oil or is wet, you know you're rings could be bad.. So it all boils down to, what color do you want to see. He says, creamy or light brown. Which is what I got...so I was pleased. Honestly, with the mileage I was getting, I was expecting a darker color.

    The next thing is to compare the old plugs to the new ones. This ensures you got the right ones at the store.
    [​IMG]
    Sure enough...the new ones look different. So I called another store to check the part number, and they confirmed that what I got was what they had in their computer. Sure hope they didn't guess when assigning numbers.
    [​IMG]
     
  20. Damian Grihalva

    Damian Grihalva High Wheeler

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    Now what do you NOT want to see when pulling your plugs.

    Excessive gap, and corroded...like so.
    [​IMG]

    Here's an oil-fouled plug.
    [​IMG]

    Ed brought out his little do-hicky for plugs.
    [​IMG]

    While removing the plugs, Ed will put each plug in its coresponding hole. This allows him to keep track of what plug came from what cylinder. Doesn't seem that important when your motor is running decent, but if you start running into problems and fouled plugs, its nice to keep track of where it came from for repairs.
    [​IMG]

    With all the plugs out, this little piece of wood also allows you to look at all the plugs side-by-side.
    [​IMG]
    Looks like a consistent running motor. All the plugs look like the same. That means all the cylinders are firing evenly. I will say that the white on top of the plugs got me a little worried that I may be running a little lean.

    Next up, compression test it. Ed has the tools handy, so we start plugging the compression tester in one cylinder at a time.
    [​IMG]

    A compression tester is nothing more than a tube that seals into the sparkplug holes, it has an air pressure gauge at one end, and a check-valve to hold the highest pressure.
    [​IMG]

    To use it, simply put your foot to the floor (as not to create a blockage by the carb) and crank the engine for about 4 seconds.
    [​IMG]

    Then read the gauge.
    [​IMG]

    Depending on what kind of motor you have you can get anything from 100-200psi. Our IH motors are FAR from high-compression motors, so at my altitude you'd want between 110-150. Back when Rod of Giddum Up Scout was in business, he sold used motors out of Scouts he'd dismantle for parts. I asked him once what a good motor is, and he said he wouldn't sell anything under 120psi compression. My motor...OUCH 110psi. To be honest, that's as low as you'd want.

    (Just for comparison, for those of you who noticed, the trip to Don's in Pueblo yielded a 1993 VW 2.0 16v motor for a project (not a scout). I inquired about its compression tests before picking it up and the yard (who tests all its motors) tested it out to 170psi)

    Anyway onward and....downward? Second cylinder: 105.... even worse. I was not liking this one bit. But Ed quickly jumped for his battery charger.
    [​IMG]
    He said, your battery's weak. The slower the motor cranks, the less the compression.
    [​IMG]

    Sure enough, with the motor crankin' noticeably faster, compression jumped to 120 across the board.
    [​IMG]
    At the beginning it wasn't so, but the longer the charger was on, the better the motor cranked. By the time we got to cylinder #7 was at 130. I was pleased.

    The only thing I'd like to add at this point, is that you typically don't want more than about 10% difference between your cylinders. If one is much lower than the others, its an indication of something wrong with the motor. If you're looking at a Scout to buy, and the compression numbers aren't within about 10psi of each other ~ in particular if one is way lower than the others, you may want to look for another Scout ~ or plan on some engine work.
     

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