The other day, I finally finished cleaning/organizing my garage and building a basic workbench. Basic in that it's a six-foot piece of 3/4" particle board nailed to a frame of 2x4s - that's all anyone needs, right? I finished hanging the two-tube fluorescent lights and wiring in a couple outlets, and added a few nails up high on the frame to hang random extension cords, brake line, hoses, and whatever else I could think of to take up less shelf space.
With that taken care of, I could finally turn my attention to the truck! I pulled the tarp off, removed the hood - pretty easy since it's not mounted to anything and is really composed of nothing more than louvered sheet metal - and went to start it. That's when I saw the battery cables. Both of them were hooked up to the battery, which meant the battery would be dead, since there's a short somewhere in the system and it drains the battery. That meant I'd have to push it in the garage from it's resting place for the last few weeks, the yard in front of the garage.
It's rained a lot here in Michigan since I parked the truck, so the ground was a bit slick, and the tires had sunk a bit. I couldn't pull it out myself. I went back into my newly-lit garage and grabbed a come-along from one of those nails, and a strap from the bottom shelf. The strap I wrapped around a nearby tree partially in the direction I needed to go, and the come-along I hooked around one of the exposed spring shackles (it's a really simple vehicle). A bit of ratcheting later and she rolled free to where I could push it by hand. This cycle repeated one or two more times before I was in the garage, but it didn't take too long and I had her where I wanted.
Next thing I did was take an assessment of everything I needed to work on and thought up a plan of attack. Then came disassembly! The hood was already off, so that was easy. The bed was a bit harder, but with a little help from a furniture dolly I got it moved out of the way. The seat was light, and doesn't take up much space, but for the cab I needed help. My buddy Mike came over and we lifted it up over the shifter to get it out of the way. With that, I had something I could work with.
I found some plans for the cab mounting wood and the frame dimensions, plotted them out in large scale one day, and hung them to the wall of the garage. That's when I realized the front crossmember was an inch too high! So that's one more thing I'll have to rectify. Then I got to work on the driveline.
The rear spring was just held in with one bolt, and the four at the front of the torque tube were new, so they came out without a fuss. That's were the easy stuff ended. I had to heat the nuts on the spring shackles in order to get them to turn, and then I had to heat the spring mount on the radius rods to get the bolts out! I got it done though and got the rear end out. Now I'm working on smoothing the radius rods and welding up any deep pitting before I take them to the powder coater.
I got myself a little radio out there to keep me from going nuts, but it's going to be a long winter...