@Lura: I am not absolutely sure what captivator means but it sounds like a compliment, so thank you. And, yes… the problems I face here are the problems the guys find all over the world when building they dream trucks.
Only few things to report so far.
As the search for the final pieces of the brakes and the air pressure system proceeded with no news, I continued working on the hardware until late at night, sometimes finishing with a friendly coffee or a hot chocolate cup at Karen and René’s. They were happy and enjoying the new layout of the dining/living room. They got permission from Eduardo –with a little help from a friend- so they were sleeping in the truck during the labour days, while Terral was refloated from the deep darknesses of the Atlantic salt water.
And, finally, one of the guys I asked for some samples sent the collars that were right for the fittings of the Merkabah. They were the right ones, yes, at last. They were brass collars instead of alluminium and they were not exactly equal, but they fitted perfectly. I was quiet happy and I asked him to send a lot of them.
Eduardo finished to assemble the engine and had René to paint it. As I mentioned before, the truck made it to San Felipe only by miracle, and the overhauling included, among other stuff, new turbo, new pumps, new clutch, replacement of all the seals and a deep cleaning to take the corrosion out. Some pieces of cloth and lots of sand were found in the carter, partially blocking the oil sucker, or whatever its name is, and even the piston rings had not replaced when the engine was repaired in Brazil. You could see René´s eyes opening wider and wider at the disassembling, at the edge of panic. Now it was time to put it all back where it belonged and connect everything to make it live again. My brother in law was, as usual, absolutely confident, as you can see.
I took all the fittings and the valves and the hand pump out and spread them on the bench, cleaned them once more and prepared them for painting. I knew they would get a little scratched during installation, but it would be more difficult to do a good paint job once installed. Moreover, I did not like the tecalan hoses to be painted on. You know… always a matter of choice.
Sooo… paper, care, masking tape and patience. The very known recipe that took me the whole afternoon, without even getting close to finish the job. René and some other regular customers of the shop looked at me and what I was doing with the same amused grin. Hmm…
And, one friday afternoon, Terral the truck got its engine running. It crancked not like the Merkabah, of course, because it needed a little more time and revs until the injection was ready, but when it did, it began to roar and remained at idle vibrationless and pretty nicely tuned. René´s smile had no room in the shop and the news spread like fire on powder on facebook. Good for him and Karen.
On our side, Edie and I agreed and shook hands, and the next Saturday we spent the whole day working at the shop. As Terral was still there and would still be until finishing a lot of minor details, making difficult to work on the cabin, we focused on the doors of the Merkabah. It was really cold for our standards, and we got to work pretty tough and fast right on arrival to disassemble one of the doors, just to warm us up a little.
The door of the copilot side was better looking than its opposite, but after a few caresses it became evident that it was necessary to apply a lot of medicine to get it right. Edie started with the rough part and the blams and pows while flattening the steel echoed by the shop.
Once I finished to prepare and mask all the fittings I had forgotten the day before, and the temperature raised as the day went on, I sprayed washprimer on all the pieces. I decided not to prime the fitting stuff but just to apply the washprimer and the grey polyurethane paint directly on it. Should be enough. The supports would receive the full treatment, though.
After some time I turned the pieces upside down and sprayed more washprimer, I helped Edie with the door and then it was time to go home.
Sunday was a do-nothing day. Good.
Monday afternoon, time to continue. I went directly to prepare the right amount of grey paint and then applied it to the already washprimed pieces and parts. I was on the third hand and there still was half the paint I had prepared. God, I hate to waste paint!
I looked among the big boxes on the attic and found the Jost trailer coupling. I cleaned it for good and then it received a few hands of grey stuff. I applied carefully but generously the polyurethane paint and when I finished there still was a lot of paint in the paintgun. It finally went in the trash can, with some cursing words to my poor judgement on what “right amount” means.