Tuesday, October 25, 2011

tuesday of last week i woke up with the worst back pain. i had to roll myself out of bed, couldn't sit up. embarassing, right? all week long i hobbled around, hurtin. it put a hefty damper on things.
with a second new voltage regulator on my truck, my charge light was still coming on. took it to the shop, again.
they checked it over (i told them it was my first time replacing an alternator and while it seemed simple, there is always the possiblity i did something wrong) and they found that there is some sort of short in the wiring system.
basically i need to find it now, and fix it.
the heater has decided to come on, full blast, now. no turning it on or off.
also, the gauges work sometimes, not always, but usually halfway through the drive to work they have worked/not worked at least twice.
there is a sweet spot on the dash, if i press it hard, all the gauges work all the time.
interesting, right?

saturday after work i called a massage therapist friend to please help me, she did, then i had mexican food, and i felt so good that i slept outside by a campfire. it was awesome until i woke up covered in frosty dew. brrrrrrrr!
Lazy Sunday
that said, its been hoodie weather all weekend.
both bostons have been rocking their purple sweats.

sunday morning i made fat kid breakfast for me and andrew, chocolate chip pancakes! i forgot we had whipped cream, but he didnt.
Fat kid breakfast
then we hit up the southside for a mega fun shopping adventure where i bought nothing.
i made a big batch of brunswick stew that simmered in the crockpot all day while we shopped. we came home and made another campfire, but sat in the garage and ate and talked about big plans for expanding/re-working the garage as a sweet workshop space for rv/moped/bike/woodworking stuff.
monday i frittered around the house with the dogs, doing chores and enjoying the pretty lovely weather.

later on julie and i went for a halloween costume search, and were getting pretty bummed by the third store with no luck. we got it together, and i had some good luck today, so we're back on track. gonna get together in a day or two to finalize things.
Real spiders apparently love fake spiderweb!
the real spiders got wise at our house, and started hanging out next to the fake ones. smooth move, guys, verrrrry smart.
halloween is right around the corner, the porch is still looking spooky (extra spooky with real spiders) and i'm stoked!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

things are never simple.
i didn't feel like messing with my truck AT ALL when i started my weekend at 3pm on saturday.
Struggle for possession of the front window
the weather was perfect, i opened all the windows in the house and cleaned.
dottie and brown cat were busy competing for the window seat up front
Hey cat, give me my window seat back!
the afternoon wore on, i got tired of cleaning, so called a few friends and decided to have a campfire.

it was a perfect night for it. cool weather, hot fire.

cooked some hot dogs. crystal brought over fresh, warm cinnamon rolls, and i had key lime tarts left from andrews birthday. sugar overload. wasted on dessert!
Campfire snuggles
we both ended up falling asleep outside, the dogs snuggled up on us and it was warm and perfect.
woke up at 2am, cold because the fire had totally died down, and went inside to bed proper.
woke up to another glorious bout of weather.

dicked around cleaning, made cranberry/orange buttermilk scones

(i have a massive amount of buttermilk to use up), and started decorating the house for halloween.
i had picked up a new soccerball for Egon on Saturday, so he played outside for about an hour, knocking it around until it got stuck in a muddy low spot under the rv.
he got a bath, and dottie made fun of him the whole time from the sidelines.
dottie wants to help
his face was slobbery and muddy, and his legs were gross.
sad dude
i love bathtime for boston terriers, because afterward, they are like jello. they're all fired up while they're a little wet, then they crash HARD.
Melting face snuggle pup
i dicked around decorating the porch all day, just kinda putzing around in the gorgeous weather.
wooly bear caterpillar
found a cool wooly bear caterpillar. he wouldn't stretch out, just sat curled up in my hand til i put him back down.
monday i finished decorating the porch.
its pretty spooky by day
daytime spooky porch
and even spookier by night
spoooooooky porch
julie came over monday and helped me hang bats, we had scones and coffee and the dogs were total assholes.
lookit those bats!
but the bats came out so awesome. i love it.
monday i figured i'd procrastinated long enough on the alternator issue. i pulled it out of the truck again and returned it.
picked up the new CORRECT one this morning at 745 and installed it. drove my truck to work with the charge light flickering on and off. boooooooooo
dropped it at my mechanic, feeling hopeless and pissed off. the voltage at the battery with the truck running was 13.69 volts, which is fine. with lights on, it dropped to 12.3 volts. not good.
voltage regulator isn't working...the brand new voltage regulator i mean. its been on my truck for five days. so its going back to the store tonight, i'm gonna put the old regulator back on and hope that it still works. we'll see what happens from there. if this doesn't work my truck is gonna get a viking funeral

Friday, October 14, 2011

so i left work last saturday in high hopes. lots of plans for the weekend, including andrews birthday.
Wall, doggg
this dog was creepin on my as i walked to my truck down belmont ave. yikes.
The only brindle pup out of the neighbors dogs litter of 8
neighbors puppies are getting big

the only brindle one is a bossy, vocal little female. funny.
the weekend was a blur, the only things of note on saturday afternoon/evening and sunday were epic snuggs from my lil beaners.
i love lazy dogs that are high energy too
Epic snuggle sesh this am!
also, i got my cluster backlights to work, that was a big victory.
cluster lights!!!  YEAH!!!
plus one for being able to see your gauges at night!
keep passing this truck in church hill, sick roll bar and lift kit
i like seeing it, all white, with a rejection inspection too. haha.
monday was andrews birthday, he ran off to mountain bike for a few hours in the am. caught lunch with his mom later.
came home and chilled, then had a pizza party/skate sesh at the bike lot, cardinal sins bowl get together.
made him a dozen and a half key lime tarts and a rich chocolate cake with meringues.
Birthday meringues for Andrew
something about making meringues always gets me wasted on sugar. wether its the grinding up regular sugar into finer particles or the constant whisking, i always end up totally wired, and literally sugar high.
birthday was a success, gifts were given and liked, it was a fun night with friends and skating and pizza/cake and he was stoked. thats whats up.
so things were good. i thought.

went to work on tuesday, came home on lunch to let the dogs out, went back to my truck and it wouldn't start. eh? i hadn't left lights on, but the battery seemed dead. did i mention its been raining for several days now? that always makes auto repair so much more fun, especially when you're working with electrics.

called roadside assistance for a jump, meanwhile my neighbor came home and hooked it up. truck was running, no bigs. got gas, got it jumped again at the gas station. battery wasn't charging? went to advance auto, got diagnosed with bad alternator. luckly, mercy was taken and i was given a random big discount on a new alt and voltage regulator.
parts arrived early the next day, i went and picked em up. pulley was bent. brought it back. swapped pulleys. had to go to work, time was just not on my side.

biked home from work in the dark. installed new parts. jump started truck, let idle for 30 min. went to drive around for a little bit to really recharge battery, the moment i cut the lights on, the truck died. WTF.
alternator was not charging the battery. why, oh why? then it started pouring, so i called it quits and went to bed.

looking around online this morning, i found some problems. i knew that the alternator i had on the truck was #14273...and the one ordered to replace it was #14274. so what did that mean? the other alternators available according to the computer system were black plug, and mine was green plug. welllllllll. here's what it means.
14273 was a green plug, where the pins referred to F, E, and N on the back of the alternator.
14274 was also available with a green plug (it also comes in black plug thats a different pin style) but the pins go to L, E, and F wires internally.
you can tell which alternator you need by counting the wires that go to the voltage regulator, 5 wires mean LEF or 14274, 6 wires mean FEN or 14273.
now, i'd counted wires to the voltage regulator to order a new one. there were six. that important detail wasn't really listed as a defining quality of the alternators in the advance auto computer system.
so i guess my next move is to see if they'll switch em out for me. order me a FEN and swap it for the LEF.
i have a funny feeling it won't be that easy.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

This weekend was all truck, all the time.
Im good at taking things apart
Saturday after work I redid so much wiring, spliced all kinds of wires that were oddly severed (I thought certainly they wouldn't work) but they all did!
Techincally the lisence plate lights should've failed inspection, but they went unnoticed. I know that with my luck, if they don't work, I'll get pulled over and ticketed. The old lights were dangling, literally, held on with some sort of magic!
Old shredded lisence plate light fixtures
And the wires to the plugs at the wiring harness were cut. I spliced em, and the old wires all still worked, the actual fixure was just dry rotted and broken.
New bulb socket, meet old gasket
New sockets were available at the auto shop for $4 each, so I bought two, and cut them to fit in the old gaskets.
Easy breezy
easy breezy, done and done.
Then I installed 4 new side marker lights. The box of crap that came with the truck had two new fixtures in it, and I had one leftover from the last Hilux, so I ordered one more from eBay and did the same dremel cut to get them all to fit.
Cool, working lights are the jam. I took apart the side marker light that is part of the headlight housing (the driver side one failed inspection because it wasn't working) and filed the connections. Viola, light works! With all kinds of glee, I moved on to tackling the floorboard prep.
Took the seat out to examine the situation.
Seat out. Gross!!!!
Gross, man, there was so much dirt and grime. Found 35 cents,5 spare lugnuts, and a lot of weird trash.
Got busy with the shop vac and cleaned it out. Scrubbed it all down with soapy water.
interior floor is not as bad as my last toyota!
Interior rust wasn't as bad as the last toyota, but was still pretty gnar.

But the body mounts were pretty bad. Thats for sure.

I slept on it and decided to just fiberglass patch it all. I know its kind of a crappy "fix", but knowing my luck with vehicles, I don't really know how long I'll have this truck. I had the subaru from August '10 to February '11, and the other hilux from March '11 to August '11, so lets just see how long this truck survives my luck.
fiberglass mat, cut to fit
cut fiberglass fabric to fit the general shape. cut two big ones for each side, then did a couple smaller sheets of fabric to reinforce the areas that were open holes, as well as metal screening.
fiberglass/resin patch
rigged up a light for extra heat since the temp yesterday only hit 60.

all said and done, I coated the outside at the wheel well with rubber undercoating, and then coated the inside with it as well.
Everything got a good scrub down, and its a lot quieter and less exhaust fumey to drive!
Now its back at the shop, hopefully getting the brake fluid leak squared away. Brought the mechanics a dozen doughnuts from Country Style as a thank you for the big discount on parts/labor.
Lets hope its back in my life later today so I don't have to bum a ride home from work!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

found dogs
ah crap
andrew found two dogs yesterday and they were so freakin nice.
already neutered/spayed.
super super friendly, they wanted to give too many kisses.
decent leash walkers
female was tattooed on her lil belly
please go get them if you want a dog, we couldn't bring them into our house, they're at the richmond animal control shelter on chamberlayne.
pass it along.
she was so cute and sweet.
two dogs were running in gov'mt road traffic