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Old 07-08-2014, 03:55 PM   #31
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Re: 1984 Dodge B350 4x4 project

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Originally Posted by Pntyrmvr
After 25 months since my last posting about this project I have some news on many fronts...
Can't wait.
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Old 07-09-2014, 03:39 PM   #32
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Re: 1984 Dodge B350 4x4 project

Hi,

It's been quite a couple of years since I last posted anything on the 1984 B350 4x4 build.

Not much has happened except a lot of this:



You can just make out the top is on the van, but with no reasonable insurance in sight there she sat.

I took another shot at insurance this year and voila! $716 per year gets me coverage on a 4x4 van.

I never did drive this beast on the roads in all the time I've had it. I had it inspected and it passed with two new tires, front brakes, and an exhaust system.

I finally attached the canvas to the sheet metal, and put in the new transfer case. Then I loaded up my new gal, Leggz, and my dog Pint and headed off to a very quiet spot on Manitoulin Island.

It took the 2 mile off road section like a champ. Ground clearance was great. It never needed four wheel drive, but it was nice to know that it's working.

So here we have Pint on security detail while we take the ferry crossing for 2 hours:



Then the famous shore line camping spot:



Now that Leggz has had her first taste of camping she wants to do it again. First I have to get the entire fuel injected motor out of the 1993 I have (as detailed above) and then get the AC working.

The existing motor is a bit smoky and the exhaust manifold is cracked. Modern engine management here I come.

The van was converted to 4x4 by Advanced out of Salt Lake City. It tracks down the road fine for 30 years old. The front end is a Dana 44 with leaf springs. The front brakes are from a 1984 1 ton Chev Suburban.

The back end is a factory full floating Dana 60.

Next steps are to swap the dash, steering column, and cab wiring from the 1993. Then the HVAC system, the fuel tank and lines, and finally the engine with computer.

I have 4 weeks.

Stay tuned.

Leggz is away for a while so this should keep me out of the bad parts of town for a while.

Great to be back at it. Jage will need a top up too.

All the best team.

Regards,

Gavin
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Old 07-09-2014, 03:48 PM   #33
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Re: 1984 Dodge B350 4x4 project

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Old 07-09-2014, 09:16 PM   #34
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Re: 1984 Dodge B350 4x4 project

Thanks Marc and Christine. Your popcorn is inspirational!
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:05 PM   #35
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Re: 1984 Dodge B350 4x4 project

Hi,

Note to self-

Carry spare front axle bearings while nosing around a remote native reservation looking for the ultimate hideaway or you may end up parked in a generous man's driveway smoking a great Cuban cigar (Monte Christo #2) awaiting your buddy's arrival a day later with the needed parts.

Also need hints on a better locking hub than Warn. The plastic melted when the axle nut backed off.

At least I got the stereo working. Dark Side of the Moon seems appropriate.

Yup, Leggz is in Vegas. Me and the two dogs. Shame there's no whiskey.

Oh wow. "Money" just started playing. Very fitting.

Goodnight all.

Photos will, absolutely, follow.

Regards,

Gavin
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Old 07-19-2014, 04:45 AM   #36
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Re: 1984 Dodge B350 4x4 project

So as your travels continue to unfold and be so generously shared here I'm intrigued by Leggz, most notable due no photos so far---will she make a guest appearance in these upcoming photos?

Love Dark Side of the Moon---one of those works that stands the test of time I think.

Good man for hosting your busted van in his driveway---send him something nice from the road, a good bottle of Wild Turkey might fill the bill?
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Old 07-19-2014, 08:40 AM   #37
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Re: 1984 Dodge B350 4x4 project

Hi,

I'm sitting here with a cup of coffee waiting for a friend to bring up the needed parts that the nearest parts store doesn't stock so I might as well update my photos and write up my adventure.

I am on Manitoulin Island nosing around old unused roads looking for a quiet little spot near a pretty little puddle of water.

The van has run fine since I had it certified and put it on the road. Leggz is away so I came up to the island to do the kind of exploring a man and his dogs like to do.

Back country sort of stuff.








Don't want to get stuck in this so we try another route:


I've always wanted to explore the east end of the island which is the unceded Indian reservation of Wikwemikong. The south shore borders Lake Huron and has some quiet trails I took my 2wd conversion van through. Obviously a pop top SMB 4x4 would allow more exploring...

So I swing the tiller east and got rolling.

I was just turning south when the expensive noises started. I pulled over, jacked up the front left wheel, and found it to be slopping around way too much. Recalling a collection of old trucks and machinery back up the road I turned around. Sounds growing uglier by the minute!

I stopped again and poured 3 jugs of water on the heated hub hoping to buy time and therefore distance back to my salvation. Copious clouds of steam rise.

I pulled up and noticed no one was around. Big German Shepard though! My two dogs trade barks with it. I'm not getting out, and obviously not going any further so it's "sit and wait time".

Shortly thereafter a man pulls up and I explain my predicament. Four minutes later Ken and I are pulling off the wheel and checking out the damage. My dogs are fine with Lefty; Ken's big GS.

Here's what we found:

Locking hub parts:



Melted into an expensive gel:



Outer bearing and seal remains:



Lock nuts (no photo of the lock ring):



We find the lock nuts and lock ring installed out of order with the tiny pin on the one nut completely missing.

Luckily the spindle is looking okay (note wheel under axle as crude safety measure...):



Ken then drives me up to the nearest parts store. Get parts based on what I thought Advanced had put under my rig 30 years ago.

Return to rig and find parts all wrong. Clean mangled parts and try to decode outer bearing number. Ewww. Ken takes me back to the store. Inner bearing yes, seal and outer bearing no. Damn. Call store near home and have parts put out for buddy who is coming up the next day.

I then use 2 cans of brake cleaner and 510 feet of heavy paper towel to reduce the amount of filings and shrapnel to a "get home safe level".

Of course when a Dodge is down:



There's always a Ford snickering away in the corner!



My campsite:



As of now I have no idea if my friend with the needed parts will get on the ferry. Reservations recommended. So I sit and wait.

My host Ken is the manager of the local arena. He and I went to the same college! Small world. Wow.

Posting now. Enjoy your weekend team forum.

Regards,

Gavin
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Old 07-19-2014, 03:19 PM   #38
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Re: 1984 Dodge B350 4x4 project

Hi,

Well I got it put back together enough to head home. A 25 mile test drive reveals a nice cool front hub. In fact cooler than the other side. Strange.

I'm waiting for the ferry with a cold drink.

It's a shame to head home early, but I have a new friend in Ken so life is good. (Ken wouldn't accept a penny for his help or his driving. He said somebody once helped him out of a jamb at the side of the road and it was just his turn to pay that favour back. A lesson there for all of us who do so many miles on the road. Quite a gentleman, Ken.)

Regards,

Gavin
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Old 07-21-2014, 04:36 AM   #39
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Re: 1984 Dodge B350 4x4 project

What caused this failure, is it common?
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Old 07-21-2014, 09:21 AM   #40
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Re: 1984 Dodge B350 4x4 project

Hi JWA,

This failure is very uncommon.

The front brake rotors were replaced by a licensed shop 2 weeks ago. That procedure would have required removal of the the wheel bearings, grease seal, 2 lock nuts, and a retainer.

The lock nuts and retainer must be installed in a certain order to stay tight. Recall that a left hand wheel spins counter clockwise while a vehicle travels forward. The same direction for loosening a right hand threaded nut. Once these nuts get loose the forward vehicle motion can quickly unwind them.

My host was the one who took apart the nuts, retainer and such. He noted the retainer was incorrectly placed.

There are millions of these setups in use worldwide and when done right are essentially fail safe. So, JWA, this was human error.

Regards,

Gavin
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