Saturday, July 25, 2020

How We Know KARR Is Spoiled...

It is my 40th birthday tomorrow.  I am celebrating my 40th birthday by getting KARR painted and by basically buying anything I have wanted to replace, upgrade or add to KARR.  The new headlights, strut and fuel filler door guard were the first of my birthday purchases.  So if it seems like I am spending money like a rock star... I am. 😎🤘

I ordered a pair of new headlight motors.

I ordered replacement license plate light lenses.

I ordered these screws to use with the license plate light lenses because the original mounting screws are unavailable.  I also ordered two sets of plastic push pins which will be used with the splash guards I also ordered.  The washer in the picture is the washer for the hold down screw on the driver's side rear deck lid vent.  I discovered this was missing while working on the fuel sending unit. 

I ordered weather stripping for the front hood storage area and cowl.

I ordered a new aero nose radiator seal set.  These are rubber pieces that provide a seal between the radiator and the areo nose to help with air flow.

I ordered a pair of rear wheel well splash shields.  These go around the axle and attach to the frame on either side of the engine bay and help to keep debris out of the engine bay.

I ordered new radiator/cross member braces to replace the rusted ones.

I could not find a replacement for the rusted subframe connector, so I had to have one fabricated.

Roger at Quality Welding was able to make me one.

Roger had drilled holes and although they were close, they were off a little and needed to be enlarged.

I test fitted the new subframe connector in place.  It fits however I noticed that three out of the four bolts were rusted so badly the threads were missing.  I need to find replacements for these bolts.

We cleaned the new subframe connector with Marine Clean and treated it with Metal Prep.

While I was working on this, Sara cleaned my Fiero GT flag.  It had gotten water spots and was looking pretty dingy.  She did a fabulous job and it looks awesome.  I changed the way I had it mounted to allow the flag to lay better against the garage door.

After being treated with Metal Prep, we brought the subframe connector into the garage to dry.

On Saturday, June 27th we hung the subframe connector and treated it with POR-15.

Here is the driver's side radiator/cross member brace that needs to be replaced.

Comparisons between the new brace and the original.  The new brace feels 1.5 times heavier.

Next I wire wheeled the bolts to clean them up.  What the hell is wire wheeling?  Yes, I was asked that. 😉  Wire wheels are basically a motor driven power brush used for cutting, cleaning, deburring, edge blending, polishing, and surface finishing.  You most often see them paired with a grinding wheel.

As you can see, it does a great job of cleaning the hardware.

New brace installed.

This is the original passenger side brace.

New passenger side brace installed.

Next we installed the new headlight motors which required removing the entire headlight pop-up assembly.

I started by disconnecting the headlight electrical connection as well as the connection for the headlight motor.  There are four bolts; two on the top of the headlight assembly and two on the bottom.  You loosen the two on the bottom as the holes are slotted and remove the two on the top, and the assembly lifts out. 

Passenger side headlight assembly removed.

The clip on the rotating arm of the motor needs to be removed using a flat blade screwdriver.  

Be careful as this clip can go flying.  I wish I would have reminded myself of this.

We spent the next half hour crawling on our hands and knees on the garage floor looking for this clip.

There are three bolts that hold the motor to the pop-up assembly.  Here is a side-by-side comparison of the new and old motors.

The arm needs to be transferred from the old motor to the new one.

I used the wire wheel to clean up the three bolts.

Since we had the entire assembly out, we decided to clean it.  

After the unit was cleaned and dried, we mounted the new motor.

I reattached the arm and replaced the clip.

I reinstalled the pop-up headlight assembly after cleaning out the bucket area where the headlight mounts.

Tested and working!  It is so quiet! 😳

Onto the passenger side.  The removal process was the same.

This is a picture showing the area where the pop-up headlight assembly mounts.  I vacuumed and cleaned both of these areas before reinstalling the assemblies.

I was more careful when removing the clip this time.

Passenger side reinstalled.

Testing both lights.

I cannot believe how smooth and quiet the new motors are.  I will be keeping the old motors as spares.

The new subframe connector was cured and ready to install on Sunday, June 28th.

I went to Mac's Hardware and found some replacement bolts, although they were not flanged so I had to add washers.

New subframe connector is installed.

Next I replaced the old license plate light lenses with the new ones I purchased.

I got out the new lenses and screws I purchased to attach them.

I was right in the thinking these screws would be the right length, but I was not counting on the fact that the design of the license plate light lens would have changed.  The new lens requires the screw to pass all the way through the mounting hole to the backside of the lens before the screw has something to grab onto.  It is essentially like a spacer.  The screw is able to turn into the hole of the old lens immediately, allowing the screw to be much shorter.

I removed both of the old lenses.

Here is a comparison between the old lens and the new lens.  They look identical except for the diameter of the mounting holes.

Here are the LED lights for the license plate.

I had some screws of the right length I was able to use to secure the new lenses, however I wanted to paint the heads black.  I did this and, while they were drying, worked on some other things.

I installed the new washer on the driver's side deck lid vent. 

We removed the old weather sill from the front hood storage area.

We removed and replaced the cowl weather seals with the new ones I purchased.

We installed and trimmed the new weather seal for the front storage area.  I did not use weather strip adhesive as I was not sure if this will need to be removed when KARR is painted.

I noticed I am missing a rubber bumper on KARR's hood.

It looks just like this one, which is lower down on the hood.  There are four total; with two on each side.  I need to find a replacement for this.

KARR's cowl plastic is also badly oxidized and faded.  I had previously purchased Mother's Back to Black trim restorer to try to fix this but was unhappy with the results.  It just does not last.  I decided to give it another try today and while it looks good right away, it just does not last.  It seems to be more of a dressing than a true restorative product.

The new screws I had painted were dry and I reinstalled the license plate lenses.

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