Itinerant stop in Livermore

Moderators: Amskeptic, Sluggo

Post Reply
User avatar
SlowLane
IAC Addict!
Location: Livermore, CA
Status: Offline

Itinerant stop in Livermore

Post by SlowLane » Sat Aug 13, 2016 9:36 am

This, my second Itinerant visit, started with an enviably shiny Naranja Westy puttering into my driveway shortly after 9 on the appointed day. Having read Colin's description of his harrowing foray down highways 680 and 580 (I don't venture onto either highway with my Westy if I can help it, and my fuel system is in top-notch condition), I was a bit concerned that he would a) not survive, or b) give me holy hell for scheduling an appointment in such an air-cooled-unfriendly location. Neither concern bore fruit. He was all graciousness as we greeted and wandered inside for coffee.
Image
My mission for him this time around was to teach me about rust eradication/stoppage and strategies for covering up the myriad rusty spots on my van such that it would "look okay from 20 feet. Okay, 30 feet. In low light." Also maybe remove a window, treat the rust underneath and re-install it so that I had some practice with the procedure.

As we know, Colin reserves the right to accept or alter the missions we offer him. If he deems that there is a more pressing issue to be addressed, that will take precedence. And that's why we hire him: for his judgement in these things. Fortunately, he decided that my van was mechanically well-sorted enough to accept the proffered mission of tutelage in vehicular cosmetology.

After a survey of the rust situation and a fervent exhortation on the importance of adequate drainage in the body cavities, we decided to tackle the sliding door first. Off came the interior panel, to (re-)discover the expanding foam that I had foolishly sprayed in there years ago, which was now surely contributing to the crumbling rust in the bottom corners and along the bottom of my door. Appropriately chastened, I promised to dig out all that crappy foam and make sure all the drain holes were clear before liberally applying rust-catalyzing primer inside the door.

The sliding door outer skin had about twenty rusty spots ranging from dime-size to quarter-size, and these have been bothering me for a long time. I had hit them with a spray of rust-catalyzing primer a couple of months ago, just out of mild curiosity, and the primer had drooled down the side of the van, bonding to the heavily oxidized paint. So not only did Colin then have to show me how to deal with the rusty spots, but also how to deal with the stupid primer drools. Much careful wet sanding and cut-polishing ensued, with repeated warnings about how thin the factory paint is on the Vanagon and how ridiculously easy it is to sand down to the primer. Eventually we had a bunch of rust-spots ready for paint.

So then of course we had to take out the window. That was accomplished with little fanfare, but with repeated warnings to not "heave" on the window (I swear I didn't think I was heaving, but I guess I was). Once out, the window channel turned out to not be as bad as I had feared, so I was given the task of sanding it down and applying rust-catalyzing primer (with a brush this time) while Colin went around front and attacked the rusty ledge behind the front bumper with a wire wheel.
Image
And those are the only two photos I have of the day. It is hard to remember to take photos as the day progresses, even though I'm sure this was one of Colin's less frenetic visits.

After a short lunch of my wife's awesome borscht and apple cobbler, we were ready to paint. I had gone to the local FinishMaster outlet and had them mix up a pint of LH1B Bamboo Yellow acrylic enamel a couple of days beforehand, so we mixed a bit of that with the hardener and proceeded to brush it onto the prepared rust spots. Colin immediately started cursing (and can he curse) the cheap Chinese brushes I had picked up, because they shed hairs like nobody's business into the carefully laid-down lines of paint (later we also discovered that the dark blue paint on the brush handles dissolved readily under the influence of Gum-Out). There wasn't much else to do but soldier on, reminded that the focus of the day was my education, not a finished product. When he was done, the bumper sill looked a hundred times better than when he started, and I can't spot the brush hairs from 6 feet away.

We then took an interlude to drive my Westy (sans sliding door window) to the paint store to pick up more rust-catalyzing primer. This gave Colin a chance to evaluate how well my van runs, and do some comparisons of CHT vs. AFR whilst making mild-mannered fun at the mess of gauges on my dashboard.
Image

Once back, we decided that even though the paint hadn't hardened up enough to Colin's liking, we would proceed with the colour-sanding tutorial. This involved using itty-bitty bits of extraordinarily fine wet-or-dry sandpaper to gently abrade away the high-points on our brushed-on "dots" of paint while avoiding the erosion of the factory paint just outside the dots. As one might expect, this is extremely time-consuming, not to mention exacting work. Good thing my labour is "free" for this job. I figure that, given my equivalent hourly rate, I'll probably end up investing enough time into the paint on this vehicle to have purchased one of GoWesty's overpriced "vanlife" toys.

By the end of the day, about a third of the dots were sanded, the paint on the window channel hadn't dried enough to re-install the window, and we had not gotten around to solving all of the worlds problems. During the course of the day, there was thoughtful discussion on the topics of varnish maceration, post-pump filtering, Walmart, quality as it relates to nation of origin, factory beef farming, plant-based diets, Trump vs. Hillary (only very briefly: it was such a nice day, why ruin it?) oxygen sensors and catalytic converters, OXS relays and WOT switches, fuel flow vs. pressure drop, and many more. We railed against under-regulation where it offended us and over-regulation where it aggrieved us, commiserated on the overwhelmingly prevalent mediocracy in this astonishing nation, and marveled at the simple effectiveness of UPS's no-left-turn experiment. Once again, the end of the day rolled around much too quickly and Colin puttered off in search of a campsite (or at least, his next filter-cleaning site).

Best of luck with the tank cleaning, amigo.
'81 Canadian Westfalia (2.0L, manual), now Californiated

"Wisdom comes from experience. Experience is often a result of lack of wisdom."
- Terry Pratchett

User avatar
jcbrock
Getting Hooked!
Status: Offline

Re: Itinerant stop in Livermore

Post by jcbrock » Sat Aug 13, 2016 5:32 pm

Nice writeup and an impressive display of instrumentation, SlowLane. How fine is "extraordinarily fine"? 1000, 2000, heaven forfend 4000 grit?
'76 Type II Station Wagon - in the family since new!
Corvallis, OR

luftvagon
Old School!
Location: Little Rock, AR
Status: Offline

Re: Itinerant stop in Livermore

Post by luftvagon » Sat Aug 13, 2016 6:50 pm

interested in what you guys found out about cht vs afr in your tests
1981 Volkswagen Vanagon Westfalia - air-cooled Type4 1970cc CV (hydraulic lifters, 42x36 valves, stock cam, microSquirt FI with wasted spark ignition)
1993 Ford F-250 XL LWB Extended Cab 7.3L IDI

User avatar
SlowLane
IAC Addict!
Location: Livermore, CA
Status: Offline

Re: Itinerant stop in Livermore

Post by SlowLane » Sat Aug 13, 2016 9:19 pm

jcbrock wrote:Nice writeup and an impressive display of instrumentation, SlowLane. How fine is "extraordinarily fine"? 1000, 2000, heaven forfend 4000 grit?
Thank you. I realize it's a bit of a hodge-podge, and I would like to put in a unified system. Something like the MGL Avionics EMS Xtreme. It would fit nicely in the dash cluster where the tachometer presently sits.

1000 & 1500 grit, which, to my carpentry-trained sense of grit, is very fine indeed. I know it isn't considered all that fine in bodywork-land, but it sure seems to take a long time to level down the paint dots with it.
luftvagon wrote:interested in what you guys found out about cht vs afr in your tests
Well, since my van sports a bastardized CA-spec L-Jet system with the lambda-feedback loop, it's rather an apples-and-oranges comparison. The ECU insists on oscillating the mixture back and forth over the 14.7 ratio under pretty much most operating conditions. Colin seemed to get frustrated trying to force a particular response to input stimulus, only to have the AFR bounce back to the rich-lean-rich-lean dance after just a couple of seconds.

Our trip was only about 10 flat miles, but we got up to 60-65 MPH on highway 680 for about 4 of those. Saw CHT on #3 hit 412 or so. Ambient temperature was about 80-85.
'81 Canadian Westfalia (2.0L, manual), now Californiated

"Wisdom comes from experience. Experience is often a result of lack of wisdom."
- Terry Pratchett

User avatar
dingo
IAC Addict!
Location: oregon - calif
Status: Offline

Re: Itinerant stop in Livermore

Post by dingo » Sat Aug 13, 2016 10:34 pm

If you get bored you can add or subtract .1V, .2V etc to the output wire of the O2 sensor...thus shifting the range of oscillation into leaner or richer zones...until you hit ECU built-in limit.
'71 Kombi, 1600 dp

';78 Tranzporter 2L

" Fill what's empty, empty what's full, and scratch where it itches."

User avatar
SlowLane
IAC Addict!
Location: Livermore, CA
Status: Offline

Re: Itinerant stop in Livermore

Post by SlowLane » Sat Aug 13, 2016 10:43 pm

dingo wrote:If you get bored you can add or subtract .1V, .2V etc to the output wire of the O2 sensor...thus shifting the range of oscillation into leaner or richer zones...until you hit ECU built-in limit.
Not sure why I would want to do that. :scratch:
Besides, I have many many other boredom-relieving projects in the queue.
'81 Canadian Westfalia (2.0L, manual), now Californiated

"Wisdom comes from experience. Experience is often a result of lack of wisdom."
- Terry Pratchett

User avatar
Amskeptic
IAC "Help Desk"
IAC "Help Desk"
Status: Offline

Re: Itinerant stop in Livermore

Post by Amskeptic » Sun Aug 14, 2016 11:49 am

SlowLane wrote:
dingo wrote:If you get bored you can add or subtract .1V, .2V etc to the output wire of the O2 sensor...thus shifting the range of oscillation into leaner or richer zones...until you hit ECU built-in limit.
Not sure why I would want to do that. :scratch:
Besides, I have many many other boredom-relieving projects in the queue.

That was a fun visit, but it was also a reminder that many of these body/paint projects are real time-eaters.

This, folks, is Slow Lane Himself (he's a good boy, such a very good boy, aren't we a veryverygood boy?

Image


And this is SlowLane's sliding door after the first experimental application of touch-up paint to the rust spots.

Image


The prior photograph of me sanding the front of the car at the bumper line yielded this FromTenFeet result:

Image


SlowLane has not yet promised that the entire Vanagon will look like the sliding door:

Image


Off to SGKent, I am only one exit away, but there have been three shoulder filter cleans thus far this morning. The crap in the gas tank is not giving up without a fierce final fight.
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 93,996 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,113 miles

User avatar
dingo
IAC Addict!
Location: oregon - calif
Status: Offline

Re: Itinerant stop in Livermore

Post by dingo » Sun Aug 14, 2016 11:58 am

frustrated trying to force a particular response to input stimulus, only to have the AFR bounce back to the rich-lean-rich-lean dance after just a couple of seconds.

to avoid the above
'71 Kombi, 1600 dp

';78 Tranzporter 2L

" Fill what's empty, empty what's full, and scratch where it itches."

User avatar
SlowLane
IAC Addict!
Location: Livermore, CA
Status: Offline

Re: Itinerant stop in Livermore

Post by SlowLane » Tue Aug 16, 2016 9:32 am

Amskeptic wrote: This, folks, is Slow Lane Himself (he's a good boy, such a very good boy, aren't we a veryverygood boy?

Image
Ah. Yes. Well, dignity is over-rated anyways.

dingo wrote:frustrated trying to force a particular response to input stimulus, only to have the AFR bounce back to the rich-lean-rich-lean dance after just a couple of seconds.

to avoid the above
Ah, I see. Understand that it was Colin experiencing the frustration (actually, it was more likely curiosity about the unfamiliar AFR behavior).
Me, I'm actually proud of having this running example of an early lambda-feedback FI system in good running order. I like watching the AFR meter needle shuffle back-and-forth across the stoichiometric boundary like a little metronome. It is, after all, the basis of most of the automotive engine management systems built since the early 1980s. I think it's pretty darn cool that I am able to install a new model narrow-band oxygen sensor into my 35-year-old bucket and have it just work.
'81 Canadian Westfalia (2.0L, manual), now Californiated

"Wisdom comes from experience. Experience is often a result of lack of wisdom."
- Terry Pratchett

User avatar
Amskeptic
IAC "Help Desk"
IAC "Help Desk"
Status: Offline

Re: Itinerant stop in Livermore

Post by Amskeptic » Tue Aug 16, 2016 10:20 am

SlowLane wrote:
Amskeptic wrote: This, folks, is Slow Lane Himself (he's a good boy, such a very good boy, aren't we a veryverygood boy?

Image
Ah. Yes. Well, dignity is over-rated anyways.

dingo wrote:frustrated trying to force a particular response to input stimulus, only to have the AFR bounce back to the rich-lean-rich-lean dance after just a couple of seconds.

to avoid the above
Ah, I see. Understand that it was Colin experiencing the frustration (actually, it was more likely curiosity about the unfamiliar AFR behavior).
Me, I'm actually proud of having this running example of an early lambda-feedback FI system in good running order. I like watching the AFR meter needle shuffle back-and-forth across the stoichiometric boundary like a little metronome. It is, after all, the basis of most of automotive engine management systems built since the early 1980s. I think it's pretty darn cool that I am able to install a new model narrow-band oxygen sensor into my 35-year-old bucket and have it just work.
Hello SlowLane,
Would you like a biscuit? A biscuit for our very very dignified little Slow Lane? ( I do love that photograph ).

As SlowLane wrote, I was not frustrated so much as fascinated trying to glean what the factory was doing to, yes, meet emissions standards and catalytic converter requirements, but also what they decided to do with the mixture when at full throttle, whether or not the idle mixture represented at off-throttle, what rpms they decided to switch on /off the feedback loop. Sorry if I seemed frustrated, probably a bleed over from my FRUSTRATING? YOU WANT FRUSTRATING?? fatality-fooling fuel filter frazzles.
Colin :pirate:
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 93,996 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,113 miles

User avatar
SlowLane
IAC Addict!
Location: Livermore, CA
Status: Offline

Re: Itinerant stop in Livermore

Post by SlowLane » Thu Aug 18, 2016 6:27 am

Amskeptic wrote: Hello SlowLane,
Would you like a biscuit? A biscuit for our very very dignified little Slow Lane? ( I do love that photograph ).
Oh, yes please, Sir, With gravy please, Sir. I do so love some biscuits and gravy.

Image
'81 Canadian Westfalia (2.0L, manual), now Californiated

"Wisdom comes from experience. Experience is often a result of lack of wisdom."
- Terry Pratchett

Post Reply