Project Hellraiser 3

Page 23



Previous Page

I started off last week finishing up some tasks in the engine bay: mounted a gas pedal return spring, added some engine cage gussets, bracing and tack welding the center engine covers to the removable section of the engine cage.

I also finished off a few small details like the passenger side grab handle which can fold out of the way to allow for more entry/exit room. the handle is some 1" diameter tubing with a piece of .75" OD. DOM welded to it to act as the pivot shaft. I sourced some copper bushings, a shaft collar and a spring loaded pull pin   from Mcmaster-Carr to finish out the rest of the assembly.

Another small detail was the foot rest pegs for the driver and passenger foot wells. This give the driver and passenger a solid point to brace themselves against while crawling.  The whole assembly is made up of a trick tab, one 1/2-20 grade 8 bolt, a spacer and a aluminum knurled peg I picked up from Dan's Performance.

I got the call my tires had arrived, (4) 42 x 15 Pitbull Rockers for a 17" rim.  This was really good timing since I was hoping to check tire clearances before I tore the chassis down for painting.

Unmounted the tires are nice and square, measured approx. 40.50" tall...

and 13.125" wide.

The tire and wheel combo weighed in at 150.5lbs, 104.5lbs of that being the tire.

As you can see, at approximately 15 psi the tires ballooned out quite a bit.  I haven't had a chance to measure them yet but I believe they are every bit of 15" wide.

With the chassis up in the air I could separate the chassis jig from the frame and start working on some of the stuff under the rig.

First up was the transmission mount/cross member.  I had some pieces cut along with my other waterjet parts and had also fabricated a plate that would bolt to the transmission.  I ended up adding some side guides to capture the transmission on the mounting plate which should take some of the side to side load off the bolts.  On my previous rig the bolts had worked loose over time and luckily I caught it just before the last one fell out.

This is actually the 3rd major revision of the mount. The first and second ones were scrapped due to my discovering that the transmission mount would also have to be the forward chassis cross member. This will complicate the belly skid mounting since I need the transmission mount to float but want the skid plate to be rigid.

Speaking of front drive shafts, I tried tossing my old carrier bearing setup in the chassis in the hopes of saving money but found no room to mount the carrier bearing.  So I will have to stick to my plan of a simple two piece driveshaft which needs to stay necked down to 1.75" OD until it clears the transmission bell housing.  it looks like I can have a piece of 1.75 x .250 wall DOM grafted onto the slip section of the driveshaft (it has a 1.25" OD), so I just need to find a driveshaft shop willing to make this oddball shaft.

A few shots showing how tight the driveshaft clearance is keeping in mind this is full compression.

Since I was running low on tubing I had to use what I had left in the most efficient manner.  Before continuing on with the boat side reinforcement I added a few bars to the sides that will keep the side panels from caving in  when dragging them over rocks.

Since I was low on tubing I tried to get all of the remaining stuff that requires bends done since those pieces typically take up extra tubing. To protect the exhaust I added a piece of tubing on both sides that mimics the form of the exhaust tubing but sets just below it.  Hopefully this will keep the exhaust tubing off the rocks when dropping off of stuff. This will tie into the boat side bracing as well.

The last bent piece was the start of the engine skid plate which will tie into the belly skid plate.  This hoop ties into the fixed portion of the motor mounts vie some tabs and 7/8" rod ends. The rod ends have a slight bit of play front to back which will go away once I tie this portion into the belly skid plate.

Next Page