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Patrick Tipton

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Everything posted by Patrick Tipton

  1. More progress on the cleanup and starting to think about repairs and the assembly sequence for the new side. The front floor and bow section around the drivers compartment had been reskinned at some point. Lots of extra welds and sheet metal that needed to be removed. Underneath, there are a few doublers that need to be repaired, but overall the metal is in fine condition. I cleaned up two of the 4 vertical hat channels - I will prime the flanges (at spot weld locations) with hi-zinc. I like the rust converting primer better for the areas that will not be welded. This is an untouched section of the inner hat channel. I amazes me that any metal is still shiny and clean after 77 years. I have seen discussion over the years that the entire hull was dipped in linseed oil prior to paint. Perhaps this process explains it. I am going to wire wheel the cavity and prime it before putting the side back on.
  2. These pictures really give a good view of basic hull structure of a Weasel. For those of you contemplating a similar project, it really is not so bad. Note that the sides of the upper hull are just lapped over the lower hull. This means that within reason, the shape of that overlap (ie the side below the floor) is not particularly important - which means that fitting the side will be easy as long as the floor/sponson width is bent correctly. I "overcut" and cut a little of the lower hull sheet metal when I cut through the weld seam - no problem because it is double thick with the inner hat channel and I will add metal back when I weld the lap joint. Overall, the hat channels are in nice shape. The pressings that make up the front and rear of the center tunnel of the hull are pretty pitted, but are still fine for the use that this hull will get moving forward. I will treat the metal. I am still thinking about using a good seam sealer in here just to help minimize the opportunity for moisture in these areas.
  3. Gents: I am looking for T-24 undercarriage parts, particularly the early bogie yokes. I am also looking for a BC1136AW and related parts. TY!
  4. If I am looking at this correctly Steve, there is a seal/cover. Look carefully at a screw hole and you can see that there is a flat piece of metal that is a part of the seal. You need to take that off and then you will find bearings, nuts and lock washers. You should be able to gently tap it or take a putty knife and gently separate.... ...and welcome aboard! Awesome that you have all those original markings!
  5. I think the pictures tell the story. I will have the side & floor removed in another hour or so of work and then will be working on details.
  6. Ha! Yes - lots of work, but not bad if you do it in 2-3 hour chunks. I am replacing the side with 1 piece of new steel - it should be pretty indistinguishable from original when done. The only difference between what I am doing and the original construction is the very top edge where it meets the coaming/top of the hull....at this point (still thinking about it), I am leaving that and will weld/grind the top corner of the hull.
  7. More cutting and grinding. For those following along at home, I was nervous about replacing the whole side. It just seems like such a big job and I was worried about alignment and making the new side and on and on. The deeper I get, the easier this now looks and while I can't do the victory dance (yet🤔) and still may goof it all up, here is what I have learned. 1. Unless a Weasel is coming from a super friendly climate, the lower corners of the hull and the metal under the hat channels/gussets is going to be thin. This left side looked pretty nice and yet the metal has a lot of rot. I didn't poke around this area that much before I started cutting, but much of this damage was not visible from the side or bottom. You could see a few pin holes, but the metal felt solid and I was certainly tempted to just try and weld up the pin holes and then spray something into the area to try and stop the rot. Replacing the side is a lot of work, but I am super happy to have all of this rust gone. . 2. The effort difference between replacing the entire side and just the sponson floor (as I did on the right side of the hull) is marginal. I am guessing the entire left side is going to take less time than the right side because I will spend almost no time working on dents and smoothing seams. I will have one very visible seam along the top edge of the hull, but I think this is going to be pretty easy to hide. 3. 10 foot x 4 foot sheets of 18 gauge will make a complete Weasel side (exactly like original) and are available for about $100. 4. You need to find a large brake to bend the sides. I have drawn several versions of the side and will likely make a pattern for the lower section of the hull. With respect to the rest of the side, I will be able to trim in place and adjust. 5. Drilling spot welds is a thing. My work order: - Music - clean/polish the area so that all of the spot welds are clearly visible (or if you can see them in glancing light, mark them with a pen), - drill pilot dimples - for the hundreds of spot welds that you have to remove, the cheap spot weld cutters will work just as well as expensive ones (with the dimple drilled) - lubricate the bit - look for the puff of "rust smoke" to let you know that you have successfully drilled through the outer sheet metal. On the last two pictures, I thought this lower seam was a carefully made butt joint between the lower hull and the sides. On further exploration, I am beginning to think that it is a lap joint. There is a hat channel on sides of the lower hull that is a combined 45 degree gusset to support the lower edge of the hull, then a hat channel with a large upper flange that supports the joint between the sides and the lower hull - where all of the spot welds are in the second to last picture. The significance of this being a lap joint is that as long as the floor goes more or less in the right place, I don't have to worry about a super fitting butt joint - just need a nice straight edge to run a weld bead. I should have all of the old metal removed next week and then am heading to a buddy's shop to bend up the side. Woo hoo!
  8. Awesome. That yellow one looks familiar...think I spoke with a guy about it a few years back. The hull work really is less scary than it looks. Yes - lots of work, but.....not hard at all. Looking forward to seeing your build. Patrick
  9. I finished removing nearly all of the left side of the hull over the last several days. I have cleanup to do around the vertical hat channels, removal of the floor in the rear section and then the joint between the sides/upper hull and the lower hull. Onward! Picking up a piece of 10 foot 18 gauge steel on Friday.....so I have plenty to do before the new side will be ready to install. I am fortunate that a friend has a 12 ft brake and we are going to bend up the new side at his shop. I will video it and post soon.
  10. @OZM29C I have stepped off the cliff my friend. 😂
  11. I have mostly finished the rotisserie. I have a few more tweaks to make to the balance adjustment but it is working pretty well. I have turned back to the left side repairs and have started removal of the entire left side of the hull. It is a big job, but I think no more work than do a patchwork of repairs. My plan is to replace the entire side. I will make it from a 10 ft section of 18 gauge steel. The side will be almost identical to the original but I am going to weld it in at the top of the side along the edge. The reason for this is that removing the last section right by what I would call the "cockpit coaming" or the upper edge of the hull looks like a nightmare. My plan is to i) fit the new side, ii) install hat channels, iii) install and finish weld the side using simulated spot welds and pre-punched holes, an invisible seam on the top corner of the hull and the original visible seam on the lower hull and iv) use my PanelSpotter spot welder to spot weld/simulate spot welds as appropriate on the upper and vertical hat channels. I have cut away the side to the bulkhead. More spot weld drilling tomorrow.
  12. I believe both. I am no track expert so we can wait until one jumps in here, but there were several versions of the track with differing numbers of grousers.
  13. Looking great. Love the work with the Pullmax - those corner pockets look awesome! I know the feeling really well of getting a panel really close and then it seems to stop. First step is to hang up the tools for the night and come back a day later. As I am no guru, your mileage may vary but here is how I understand what is happening. The panel can't go flat again until it is. I know that sounds silly, but hang with me. Shrinking alone will not get it perfectly flat - you will have to planish further. I find that I get the best results with a slapper. 1. Cover the entire area with your Dykem/Sharpie so you can see what is happening. 2. Where you can see that you have a wave - planish the whole area with the slapper until you get a nice oil canning effect - pops in and out. If there are any small ridges/bumps - you need to get them out now. Use a body hammer/dolly if you need to direct the force into a small area. I have a body hammer with a flat pointed edge - almost like a wide thick screwdriver (don't know the proper name) - it works great for this kind of work because it doesn't tend to mar the metal surface. 3. Be ready to experiment with on/off dolly techniques. It often helps to put a heavy dolly in the center of your bump and then hammer on the "edge of the crater" with a slapper or a body hammer (carefully). It often doesn't seem like much is happening, but we are only trying to move the metal a little bit so that is somewhat to be expected. 4. Once the area feels totally smooth but rounded (gentle oil canning bump), shrink with the disc. I find it works best to shrink on the protruding side. If you have access issues, hit the protruding side with a big dolly (yep - caveman metalworking) - until it pops out on the side you have access to shrink. If you go easy on the pressure with the shrinking disc in the beginng, the area with tighten up as the heat causes it to expand and you will be able to shrink it more aggressively without it "popping back". I know it sounds funny, but when you get to this stage, you are really close.... You can move the metal faster with the torch, but don't get it hot or you will cause localized waves that you will have to remove with a hammer and dolly. At this point I just heat until the steel begins to turn color and then cool. I think the hardest part about this straightening is having the conviction to continue. I find myself getting it really close and thinking - "good enough" but.... because I am scared to make a decent job worse. I think the operating idea is to be bold here...you have gotten it this close and you can get it totally flat if you just go a little further. Again - great work and thanks for taking the time to share your process!
  14. Greetings - after a couple of requests, I made up t-shirts with a T-24 line drawing on the back. I had a guy do the line drawing and am pretty happy with how it came out, although I might should add the parachute "straps". I am happy to ship anywhere. If the shipping calculator on the website gives a crazy $$ number, send me an email and I will see what we can do. These were ordered a few days ago and are "guaranteed" to be in stock by 7/17. https://www.portrayalpress.com/Portrayal-Press-T-Shirt-p/620-mds-0102.htm Patrick
  15. Sorry for the lack of posts. I have been busy building a better rotisserie and planning for repairs of the left side. Longer update soon!
  16. Awesome! I think the thing that most of us miss is that 90% of getting a project done is just doing these little tasks as often as you can get to your shop. You wake up and all of sudden you can see it finished and you keep going. Patrick
  17. That is a nice project. Lots of very good condition parts!
  18. John - that would be awesome thank you. I think the T24 had a fixed, welded strap in the back (presumably what is pictured) and a similar removal one in the front to facilitate gas tank removal. It has a separate part number that I found but have not been able to cross reference. Still working on it. I am going to put together a quick post/article when I finish my research so we have it for future reference.
  19. What do they say...90% complete, 90% to go?😂 Looks great!
  20. I will reinstall all of the tabs before I prime. I need to make them.....
  21. @OZM29C Thank you because I didn't know 😂. I need all the help I can get!
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