Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The Day My Grinder Died

I've been working on the 4954 Suburbillac (that's actually a 1949 Chevy Suburban with a 1954 front fenders and grill, a 1970 Cadillac sub frame grafted underneath, and a 500 cubic inch Cadillac powerplant), therefore I call it a 4954 Suburbillac. Been working on the fenders and rear doors. The rear fenders are getting extended out 3" and the rear doors have some dents I've been trying to beat out. I found out that I'm definitely not very good at body work. Hopefully I can get everything looking half way decent with my limited skills.

 I've also got a 1988 1 ton Dodge Van in the shop that I'm dismantling so I can use the front clip and frame for the 1941 Chevy COE that we're building to pull the New Mexi-Can Streamline trailer. I have to stretch the frame on the Dodge but haven't figured out the exact dimensions yet. I'm planning on using part of the van body to build a sleeper cab onto the 41 COE, if I can get it to look like it fits. This is probably going to take more expertise than I have at the moment, but I'm going to give it a try. Wish me luck!

I haven't done a lot to the trailer this summer since it has been so hot outside. I did finally get the belly pan cut out from underneath the frame. There was plenty of dirt and dust, wadded up fiberglass insulation, along with several rat's nest that had been built underneath the floor over the years. You might say it was pretty gross and really dirty. I'm glad that part is out of the way. I still have to drop the old black water tank, but thankfully everything that was left in the old tank has finally dried up and hopefully it won't but such a mess when I get ready to cut the brackets out.

Anyway, back to the death of my grinder. I've really put this little 4 1/2" grinder through the mill here lately, not to mention that it's about 10+ years old anyway. So you might say I've got my moneys worth out of it. But I was beginning to cut a 1 inch bolt and the grinder started shuttering and making all sorts of racket, so I shut it down. I tried it later and it seemed to have smoothed out but as soon as I started to apply some pressure to the grinding wheel it began to holler at me again.

Yesterday I took it apart to check it out. It was easy to get apart but it took me about 5 tries to get everything in the right order to get it put back together. I cleaned it up and added new grease but one of the bearings is shot, so it is still dead. No resurrection at this time. Maybe later if I get ambitious and decide to replace the bearing.

So, it's off to Harbor Freight to get some more grinders. This time I'll buy 3-4 so I can have different wheels on each grinder and maybe have a backup to jump in if one of them quits prematurely. I priced the grinders at Harbor Freight and you can buy one as cheap as $20 and the expensive one is $40. I think my Dewalt that I bought a few years ago cost somewhere around $100 bucks?? I checked on the net for parts. Can't get a bearing, at least not from Dewalt. You have to buy the whole gearcase assembly and it is $51.97 + shipping and tax. What a deal! I think I'll just buy some new grinders and let the old one fade away to grinder heaven.

I've had a few people comment on our nice looking Suburban. I assume that some are looking at the picture at the top of the blog and they think that this is my finished product (below).

Sorry, this one is not ours. I hope ours turns out looking this nice and it is something I'll strive for, but unfortunately ours is not even close to this as of now. Hopefully it will be but I've got a lot of work to do before it be even close to this.

Here is another one that someone did a very nice job on.

I don't think I'd go for the low rider effect, but the guy did a good job on the restoration. So, I still have a lot of elbow grease to put into the restoring/rebuilding of ours. the moment this is what ours looks like:

This is a far cry from a vehicle that has been finished by the pros and with an unlimited budget such as this one:

Hopefully in the future our 4954 Suburbillac will remotely resemble the ones pictured above that are in their finished states. But at the present I'm still working on ours and have a long way to go. Not to mention the other projects I'm still working on....1968 Streamline travel trailer, 1941 Chevy COE and my shop which I'm constantly upgrading and changing.

Throw in a vacation or two and it really slows a person down as far as making a lot of progress. And we just recently had a 10 day trip to Fort Collins, Colorado for Patsi's family reunion. I'll write about this trip in a separate post. 

So....Until next time.


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