Spring update

I got behind on the updates but things have not been standing still. While the winter was mostly too cold or wet to do anything the bus did quite a bit of travel. The oil leaks are there but not getting much worse. The carb seems to be less leaky and the brakes seem to be improving through use. Started using Stabil in the tank and that seems to have helped starting after a few weeks of sitting with a mostly full tank. 

Original door handles

mitty2014bustarp

Got the bus down to Road Atlanta last weekend and it did great. The 12x16 tarp seems to be close to the right size for privacy, waterproofing( windows are getting "sealed") and shade. Forgot the poles to give the front "porch" some height but we made do. Power was a nice luxury as an electric blanket helped at night. The roughest part of driving to the racetrack and back was starting the bus. I think the extended starting was due to leaving 12 gallons in the tank for a month. It eventually started and posed no issues. Coming back from the racetrack the start was normal.

Engine cover patch

Engine cover patch

A little water can hurt

A little water can hurt

One of the surprises I found about a month ago was that a leak in the rear hatch and glass had allowed water to seep onto the engine cover. When I last sealed the area I wasn't able to remove the rubber mat is held by two screws on the passenger side. These are slot head screws and the solution to remove them was to buy screwdriver bits for a ratchet wrench. The torque easily removed the screws. After using some rust neutralizer I was able to fill the small holes with  J-B Weld and the large hole with a bit of sheet metal. Combined with a liberal application of caulk around the window seal it will hopefully keep the moisture out. The all the window and door seals need to be replaced but this buys me some time.

Interior of door as I found it

New door handle installed

I did have the doors apart about a month ago and found a ton of pine straw and leaves. Turns out then you run the bus without the front air screen then crap will accumulate inside the doors where the air channels to back are. I managed to get those vacuumed out but I will need to get back to taking care of the rust inside. I got the front door handles with keys off ebay. Now not only do I not have to jam a nut in to open the font doors but I also can lock them . An extra bonus is the interior door handles work to open the door. The door straps are a nice luxury to close the doors. 

The hope is to drive to Road Atlanta again this weekend for Drift Atlanta. I still have to put in the tag light I bought off ebay. Since what looks to be the tag power lead off the harness is not cooperating I will use a lead off one of the emissions air pumps. This means the tag light will be always on when the ignition is on but that will work. Hopefully an LED bulb can be sourced so there is no bulb replacement needed. I also got some oil additive that purports to add zinc to oil. In the long term I may change to a vintage-friendly motor oil. It doesn't leak out that quick and by the time you add in the additives, the vintage oils aren't that much more. 

In the next few months I  hope to fabricate metal patches for the holes in floor and body. Am going to try and rivet for the first time. As the spring racing season draws to a close I might also finally try and rebuild the carb. Hopefully I will not make the situation any worse. And it seems to be time to maybe hook up the choke. The headlines could also use some work.