Tuesday, August 28, 2012

KITT's Nose Has Been Ordered!

I ordered my first major conversion parts tonight. I ordered a season 3 front nose and rear stone guards from Knightdesigns.com. Estimated completion time is six months. These parts are all custom made, one at a time by hand.

We also placed yet another order from POR-15. We ordered another six pack of black POR-15 and another tube of POR-Patch. POR-15 is offering free shipping through Labor Day.

Paint Booth Is Operational

Our trial run with the paint booth was a success. I just want to add a fan and a filter to remove the particulates from the air inside the booth. 

To construct the paint booth we used the following:
  • Four 8x10 standard duty tarps for the walls
  • One roll of silver duct tape
  • Eighteen eye hooks and anchors to hang the tarp walls from the ceiling
  • One 10x10 standard duty tarp for the floor
Sara and I laid the tarps out on the floor widthwise. The actual measurements of the tarps were 7' 4" x 9' 6". I needed the 9' 6" to span the 8' ceiling to floor height, so we overlapped the tarps by 4" making 7' side panels. We taped the seams on both sides with two rolls of duct tape from the top of the tarps down eight feet. This allowed us to have panels at the bottom to make corners on the floor. Once our tarps were all taped together as one piece, we put up the corner eye hooks and made our frame. I deliberately centered the booth around one of the 200 watt light bulbs in the garage.  We then installed the remaining eye hooks so the walls were snug. I used two of the eye hooks in the center of the paint booth as points to hang parts for painting. I secured the open seam with clips to make a doorway. Once the side walls were up we pulled the 10" x 10" tarp underneath and folded the excess length of the side panels outward and set cinder blocks at each corner. The paint booth is easy to put up and take down. After we finished with it tonight we took it down, folded it up and put it in a plastic tub for storage until our next painting project.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Crawling Underneath The Bay

I took before and after videos of the engine bay underbody. I recorded the videos while rolling under the car on a creeper so the footage is not the smoothest, but you will get to see exactly what I saw.

The video below was recorded before we had done anything to the underbody. This is basically what the car looked like underneath when I purchased it.

This video was recorded after hours of scrubbing with wire brushes, scrubbing with MarineClean and prepping with Prep and Ready. There are still a few areas I want to rough up further but it is pretty much ready to paint with POR-15.

Project: K.I.T.T. will be on hiatus until after Labor Day. 

Sara's Sunday

We started this morning at 8:30AM. Jonathan took the drill with the wire stripping wheel and went over the bottom of the K-member. There was some overspray from the wheel well lining that he wanted to remove.

Sara's Saturday

Pop Quiz: What is missing in this picture?

Answer: The radiator. We took it to the recycling center this morning and got $11 for it. (Jonathan is putting an actual Firebird radiator in KITT so we did not need this one.)

Friday, August 24, 2012

The Wheel Of Frustration

Let me start off by saying that the chips and salsa I had tonight were definitely the highlight of my evening!

After work I started by removing the caliper, followed by the wheel bearing dust cap, rotor and shield.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Power Mirrors And A Hex Bit Socket

My power mirrors, switches and bezels arrived today! They are in great shape.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Motor Mounts, More Power And A Quick Checkup

Here is an update on what I have been doing the past few nights.

Sara's dad assisted me with taking apart the motor mounts so the inside rubber mount can be replaced. This is a two piece metal bracket riveted on either side. This bracket bolts directly to the K-member. It was necessary to drill the rivets out in order to separate them. I used a 31/64 drill bit and some cutting fluid.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Time For More POR-15

We started this morning by brushing the K-member and the front of the car with wire brushes. 

Friday, August 17, 2012

More Stripping And A Bunch Of Scrubbing

I removed the driver side tire. It was a little tricky without any weight in the engine bay, but I managed with the help of a couple of wheel chocks. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Whole Lotta Strippin' Going On

The last two nights I worked on stripping more exterior parts off KITT. 

I started by removing the clips from the fuel and brake lines. I put them in little baggies and labeled them.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

The Engine Bay Gets A Second Coat

At 5:00PM we went back out to the garage to apply a second coat to the engine bay. POR-15 is not UV-resistant, and since the engine bay stands to have some exposure to sun, it needed to have a UV-resistant top coat. BlackCote is a top coat for use over POR-15 to add UV-resistance. It has the same strength, durability and rust preventative qualities that POR-15 has. 

First Coat Of POR-15 On The Engine Bay

We had one leftover can of partially used black POR-15 from when we painted the interior and t-tops. Jonathan unsealed the can and it was fine. He used one of our fabulous dauber stirring sticks and stirred the paint for quite a while to make sure it was completely mixed. 

Emptying The Engine Bay, The Conclusion

We got started at 9:00AM this morning. Jonathan decided he wanted to try to remove the tie rods and the rest of the steering linkage. He saw online that you can use the Pitman puller to separate the ball joints. This sounded like a better idea than what we were doing before, so we gave it a try.

Jonathan first had to remove the cotter pin and the retaining nut. They were very dirty, so he had to do a lot of scrubbing with the wire brush to even see what he was working with.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

The Engine Bay Is Empty And Prepped!

Here is what the engine bay looked like when we returned from lunch:

Passenger side:

Emptying The Engine Bay, Part 10

This morning we started at 8AM. Jonathan got out the rubber mallet and the pickle fork (from the ball joint and tie rod kit) and started banging away.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Emptying The Engine Bay, Part 9

I had it all planned. After work Jonathan and I were going to swing by the hardware store to buy a ball joint and tie rod kit to remove the steering linkage. Then we were going to get started right away on KITT. We would remove the last items in the engine bay and probably even get the engine bay cleaned and degreased. Then, after all that hard work, we would have a pizza for a late dinner.

I am delusional.

It all started as planned. We went the hardware store immediately after work and bought the ball joint and tie rod kit.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Emptying The Engine Bay, Part 8

I had to go into work early today and so I got off early. I decided to dive right into removing the brake and fuel lines from the engine bay. First I worked on loosening all the line brackets in the engine bay and then worked my way along the underbody. The following pictures outline the path the lines take from the engine bay along the underbody. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

And He's Back In The Air

Tonight Sara and I cleaned and organized the garage and got KITT up on jack stands. I get off work early tomorrow and want to work on removing the brake lines and power steering gear.

Interior Samples Finally Arrived!

I ordered interior samples from 1A Auto on July 6th. They finally arrived today. We received 13 different interior samples in various shades of tan. Based on their match to each other and the similarity to the original carpet and material, we chose these four.

The sample labeled "Sail Panels & Headliner" is the material that will cover the t-top headliner, t-top shades, sun visors and sail panels. We chose #1755 Light Saddle.

The sample labeled "Seat Fabric & Door Panels" is the material that will cover the velour section of the door panel and is what we will submit to the upholsterer to match the seat fabric to. Ideally this fabric would be the same. We chose #P775E Sandstone.

The sample labeled "Carpet" is the carpet for the flooring of the car as well as the carpet that  will be used on the plastics. We chose #8384 Desert Tan. This carpet is actually sourced from Auto Custom Carpets.

The sample labeled "Door Panel Vinyl" is the vinyl that will appear just on the door panels. We chose #90022 Palomino Sierra.

We took the following pictures below in various lighting conditions. (Note: the dark spot in the middle of the "Door Panel Vinyl" sample is actually bleed-through from the permanent marker 1A Auto used to write the number on the back.)

Indoor compact fluorescent lighting (warm):

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Emptying The Engine Bay, Part 7

I started this afternoon by draining and removing the master cylinder. I still have to remove the brake lines, but I need to get the car up in the air to do that.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Emptying The Engine Bay, Part 6

Sara was running some errands while I worked on the engine bay this afternoon. When she returned home she helped me remove a few more things before we called it a day.

We removed both side signal marker lights.

This is the driver side signal marker light.

Emptying The Engine Bay, Part 5

This afternoon I worked on removing the rest of the wiring harness. Basically all that was left was the headlight harness. These three pictures show how the headlight harness was routed.

Painting The Firewall With POR-15, Part 2

We waited 2 1/2 hours, then went back out to the garage to apply the second coat of POR-15. I unsealed the can and mixed the paint with my newly-fashioned dauber turned paint stick.

Painting The Firewall With POR-15, Part 1

Here are the before shots of the firewall and the two inner areas below where the speaker mounts and behind the door jam. Sara worked on the firewall and I worked on the two inner areas.

Emptying The Engine Bay With Sara

After we decided to wait on the POR-15 until tomorrow morning, Jonathan started back in the engine bay. The first thing he removed was the positive battery lead.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Prepping For POR-15, Part 2

Sara and I worked on removing the seam sealer from the lower firewall tonight.

Driver side with seam sealer intact:

Prepping For POR-15

This is the area I prepped for POR-15 today. It is the inner area below where the speaker mounts and behind the door jam. First I vacuumed the loose dirt and gravel from this area, then used a rag with Marine Clean to wipe it down. I followed this with a wire brush and then repeated with the Marine Clean. After it was dry I vacuumed it out again.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Back To Working On KITT

With the extreme temperatures we have had lately we have not worked on KITT as much as I would have liked. Tonight there was a major cool down following a brief storm and we were able to get back to work on KITT again.

I want to continue work on putting POR-15 on the firewall and the rest of the interior spots that we did not get to the first time. I started tonight by removing the brake and accelerator pedals.

Center Console And Door Sills

My center console was pretty much trashed by the previous owner trying to remove it without knowing how, so I have been in search of a good replacement. I found someone that had one and it arrived this week. As a bonus it had the radio plate included and it is in great shape. I intend to repaint these a matte black so everything looks like new.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

My 24K Gold Knight's Head Arrived!

Well, not exactly...

I found the perfect knight's head pieces at Target and with a little gold spray paint I think they look pretty convincing. One for the garage and one for my desk!

KITT MiniMate And A Comic Con Exclusive

More Knight Rider purchases :)

A Toys R Us exclusive KITT MiniMate