WOW. I guess I need to blog more frequently

Somewhere in the dark hole of my laptop is a post, eloquent, witty, and so well written you would have laughed, cried, and been moved. Instead, you are stuck with this….two weeks of run down, and the desperation of needing to post and having about a trillion things to do before heading into Vegas again for the World Finals.
Here ya go. Enoch, (Enok if you look in Brad’s phone book) came down to visit, and has been helping out around here. He’s like 4/4 on the projects around here. Now if only I could somehow sneak getting the Versa Climber installed into the To-Do list…that would be kinda awesome. He’s fixed up the water damage on the novelties trailer, built a fry griller for the BBQ, and done a variety of other things. I would like to say overall production has improved, but there might be some less productive hours because of general socializing, but really it’s all good, because he’s pretty hilarious,

Last weekend the upholstery guy made it up for a bit with the upholstery. I managed to get a quick shot of the headliner. It still needs cleaned up and finished off, but the design is looking good, and I can’t wait tot see the whole truck done.

Template for install

Template for install

Pieces before assembly

Pieces before assembly

Headliner. Still needs cleaned up but looking good!

Headliner. Still needs cleaned up but looking good!

As you can see in the picture, Metal has gotten more of the Lexan along the floor installed and that the back windows are coming in. It’s a very time consuming process , but it’s coming.

Rear window mounted

Rear window mounted

Installed side Lexan. The carpet is just protecting the diamond plating

Installed side Lexan. The carpet is just protecting the diamond plating

Brad spent a couple days on just fabricating the battery cables. Apparently, cables for a 12 battery setup just don’t come stock…what’s that all about? However, it’s very labor intensive to build. Cut the wire, solder it into place, let it cool, and do it again. I could tell Brad was getting a little burned out, but that’s the tedious stuff that is left. Sure, you get those few “WOW” moments, but most of the stuff is limited to “wow” . No CAPS. All lower case, and possibly in a whisper.

Heating for the ends to solder into place

Heating for the ends to solder into place

String of cables

String of cables

Installing onto the batteries

Installing onto the batteries

Cable breakdown

Cable breakdown

Pretty batteries all in a row

Pretty batteries all in a row

The artistic view of batteries

The artistic view of batteries

I would like to take a quick time-out to officially introduce one of our sponsors- Optima batteries. It is the only battery we used in our race trucks and the only batteries on this truck. These blue tops not only look pretty, but definitely do their job! We have a lot of power needed in this truck and the only battery up to the task is Optima. Make sure you check them out on their website at www.optimabatteries.com There will be more on these guys as we move forward into the electronic portion of the build.

One thing that this week has afforded is fabulous weather. The sun has been shining and the wind has been hit and miss. The delightful rays have brought some excellent temperatures, which of course meant the first seasonal trip to the river with Hulkster. Let’s just say I have never seen a fat dog move so fast. He skipped all the steps out of the camper and dang near jumped into the van. What that also meant was he sulked the whole way back and gave me the stink eye for the next 2 days while he pouted about not going back immediately.

RIVER
While we are on the topic of side tangents and off adventures, the four of us took a morning to test out the fishing at Temple Bar. It kiiiiiiiinda flopped entirely, but it was a beautiful morning, and it gave me the rare option to eat junk food for breakfast. Who doesn’t love that? In the distance all we could see were fish jumping, and I’m pretty sure there were a few specifically throwing a middle fin in our general direction.
Back to work. I think when I posted last the shocks were on…but in case they weren’t they are now. I snapped a quick picture of the Schrader valve for the shocks to show a little info tidbit. You will note in the picture there is a slot that runs perpendicular to the threading. What this does if you have overfilled the shocks, it breaks the seal when you go to unscrew it, bypassing the o-ring to release the pressure. Kinda a genius idea, especially if you knew people in the industry. 😀

Schrader Valve

Schrader Valve

rear shocks
We also bought this exhaust wrap that is a fantabulous color, and look, and granted I have to buy another roll, the exhaust tube that was done, looks spectacular. Unfortunately, the special coating we had put on it, really didn’t work out in the end, so you do what ya gotta do.

exhaust wrap
Also installed is a glass windshield. We debated over using Lexan, but glass seemed the better choice.
The biggest “wha-hoo” moment, was the axles being installed under the truck. After looking pretty for so long on the stand, it was time to put em on the truck. It was a 3.5 person process (mostly three with the occasional fourth) and really, went pretty well. Nobody dinged anything, grazed the powder coating, or broke a part (either on the truck or themselves) The guys got the four link bars in place before the axles were slid into place. To be honest, the effort really looked effortless, and within only a few minutes 2 axles, all the four link bars, and everything was where it should be. Of course a couple adjustments were made once on the truck, but that’s to be expected. It’s really starting to become a truck. YAY.

install axle install axle 2

 
Cutting the axle away from the mount
Axles with all components installed

Axles with all components installed

Hulkster photobomb

Hulkster photobomb

4link

Installing 4 links

Cutting the axle away from the mount

Cutting the axle away from the mount

And finally, yesterday we were back at the hardware store. Oh yeah. You know it’s my favorite. Of course it started out with buying my Mike and Ikes from the quarter machine on the way in. While Brad and Enoch were off meandering for boring stuff I found these nuts ironically called castle nuts….well you can imagine. I didn’t get too carried away due to lack of space, but you can see the fruits of my labor here. Then upon checkout I did note that they have live cameras pointing down the bolts and nuts aise…so I wonder how many of my antics they just wonder what kind of idiot I am. Oh well. Maybe next time there will be a bigger spot on the shelf and I can add a few more towers and a drawbridge.

bolts shopping

castle
Ok. Well sorry for the rough version of this, but I have WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY too much I have to get done today, on top of some laundry, a jog, and a shower. So for now, I will leave you with this, and update what comes up later, and possibly go back in time to update the stuff I forgot!

Drinks for sale in the gas station!

Drinks for sale in the gas station!

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The bells and whistles

I think I need to leave more often. Instead of seeing the truck every day and thinking “UUUUUGHHHHH will it ever be finished?”, I get to come back and be like “hey, look at all the pretty stuff on it”. As y’all know I have been out of town, and mostly in the dark about the truck, but it’s time to dust off the laptop and get blogging. (among a pile of other things) I will do the best I can to extract some details about what has been happening in my absence.

So this might be more of my list. I don’t have the details on any difficulties or general issues, so I will just cruise through and tell you what’s been done.

The fuel tanks and braided steel lines were installed complete with perrrrrrty anodized AN fittings. Underneath them, the stainless diamond plate floor was installed adding to the over SHINY aspect of things. Moving over towards the front, the battery tray/mounts were installed and completed with their nice fancy pants floor. And continuing on, the trap door style entry for the driver was also completed. Anyone who knows monster trucks knows that the driver actually climbs up underneath the body of the truck in order to enter into the cab. We stuck with that idea, one because it actually is much easier than trying to climb through a door, and two, because it’s a monster truck…why not keep it that way throughout.

Battery Tray and fuel tanks

Battery Tray and fuel tanks

You will note in the pictures there are some white sheets visible along the truck sides where the floor drops down, and along the front drivers cab. This is the Lexan sheeting that has been fitted and cut for the truck and will make the working tires and shocks visible from the interior. In addition to the ground, passengers will be able to view the motor through the front wall of Lexan. The diamond plate flooring was also installed (half is covered by carpet at the moment).

Floor with Lexan down sides

Floor with Lexan down sides

In the frontal portion of the truck, the battery shut offs were installed, the steering and hose lines were also put into place. The large white box along the side is the inverter, which will be used to run the AC units on the truck, as well as the heater, audio, and any other electronics needed.

Inverter top left and battery disconnect mid right

Inverter top left and battery disconnect mid right

Other odds and ends…Limiter straps were installed. Normally, on monster trucks these prevent the shocks from extending out too far, which on this truck really are not necessary, since the truck will probably not be jumping school busses, but why not stick them on?

The last thing I would like to report on is the headliner panels I saw sitting in the corner, but I will wait to shoot a picture until the upholstery guy comes back and I can get the overall updates from him.

That’s it for now. No snarky negativity today, or such things. Just the facts. More to come since Brad was taping off the bottom portion of the truck to get some painting done.

inside front hood front