Wednesday, April 02, 2008

One Shaft = Two Chutes

Had a happy little surprise yesterday when I went to the shop to pick up my cut driveshaft and they told me it was only going to be twenty bucks! That was nice. Now I can spend the saved fifteen to twenty dollars from the estimate on the termite exterminator I just found out I'm going to need. I guess it's a good thing I started this project, because it got me back down in the back area of the basement where the damage is located. Wow - somehow I've summoned gratitude involving a termite problem. Weird.

Moving on to happier things, here is a shot of the cut drive shaft.

Cut driveshaft

Isn't it cool?! Look at my new long, straight rolling ball chutes! In the right chute you can see a piece of the inner balance tube still laying there. It had two bands of rubber around it securing it tightly within the shaft. The shop did a decent, if not exacting, job getting it sawed down for me. I knew this would be the case, that they were only using a bandsaw and the cut would not be exactly true, but I think the results will be fine for my purposes. So far, so good.

Later in the evening I attacked a not-so-fun portion of the project, the cleaning up of the axle shafts. They need cleaning in the literal sense of getting all the rust and dirt off of them, but they also need cleaning in the visual sense. There are two brackets on each tube that need to be cut off. One bracket is a coil spring pad. No biggie, three welds with my recprocating saw and we're done:

Axle spring pad removed

The other bracket, which you can see part of in the photo...not so easy. I looked at it closely last night, and my thought was, "Why did I decide this would be a good idea?" The bracket has a lengthy and substantial mounting point. It's going to take a lot more than three straight cuts to get it removed. If this were a shop job, there would be no sense in persuing it. It's going to be labor intensive, and in man-hours it would cost a lot more to strip it down than it would to just find something else. However, I want to use it just because I want to, so you get to follow along in future posts while I bang, cut, and chisel at it until it's removed. Maybe it's time for a cutting wheel. After the bracket is removed the whole thing will need cleaning with a wire wheel and degreaser (It's loaded with differential fluid inside the tubes - smells awesome.). Fun stuff!

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