Just bought my first Deuce!!

nchittendon

Active member
543
26
28
Location
La Crosse, Wisconsin
Been a short bit since i've updated, and I've done a few things since the last project....

Did a parade, and installed a sticker.
19657093_10159232839605657_4701432618072477106_n.jpg19642495_10159196334370657_6778304133426835775_n.jpg19665291_10159230048655657_3791907695202124926_n.jpg

Took a long camping trip (about 130 miles one way) with our recently updated M105 (separate build thread). Couple pics from that:
20170804_115231.jpg20170803_203103.jpg20170713_152750.jpg20170803_165223.jpg20170713_161125.jpg20170804_115339.jpg20170804_115518.jpg

Replaced some more boards on my troops seats. These boards (where you actually sit) were replaced with Red Oak since I don't have anywhere locally to get White Oak.
20170824_181321.jpg20170824_181332.jpg20170824_183504.jpg
 

nchittendon

Active member
543
26
28
Location
La Crosse, Wisconsin
had an issue with a taillight this fall. The seal went bad, and would let water in, but not let water out. So I had a short. It melted part of the housing, and everything inside was corroded.

20171124_134903.jpg20171124_134924.jpg20171124_141256.jpg

In true hobbiest fashion, I decided instead of "replacing" I was going to UPGRADE! Looked into the newer MV LED lights from the humvee or the mrap. A little rich for my blood. So then I came up with a photoshop rendering of an idea...
taillight plan.jpg

Had a friend cut me some brackets out of 3/16th steel, and sent them off to powder coating along with a bunch of other parts.
20171215_143901.jpg20180104_232530.jpg20180104_232519.jpg

Threw the parts on the truck with all new stainless hardware. Got new air plumbing and valves from the frame to the glad hands, and gave it a test. The lights blinked funny! After reaching out to my friends in facebook world, I discovered I had a grounding issue. Apparently, LED lighting is VERY ground finicky. But, alas, the project is complete, and I have my newer, brighter, CHEAPER to replace taillights.
20180108_154715.jpg20180110_215430.jpg20180110_215439.jpg

I would upload a quick video, but i'm unsure how. But the pictures show how it looks!
 

Hawkeyenfo

New member
1
0
0
Location
Iowa
Awesome thread! I'm looking at a local M35A2 now, 1954 with a White in and 46s. LOVE it and your thread is definitely going to hurt my bank account....ha ha ha. Thanks for keeping the updates going :)
 

nchittendon

Active member
543
26
28
Location
La Crosse, Wisconsin
A lot has happened since April.

First, I knew that I was going to be going to the EAA Oshkosh airshow at the end of July. I knew that the only thing I haven't really gotten my Jimmy Deans into was the front hubs. I see the pictures on fb all the time with hubs failing, so doing them before embarking on our journey was a must.

I'm glad I did.

I feel like an idiot now because I waited so long. I've had the truck since 2014. This is what I found.....
IMG_20180716_141449.jpg

If you can see it, the little shiny bits in my hand are metal shavings I got out of both sides of the truck. METAL SHAVINGS. I was on a ticking time bomb. The bearings were munched. I think the only saving grace is that someone had really done well with the prior grease job. Axles and all other bits looked good, thankfully. This was ongoing damage with NO noises, NO odd vibrations up front, and NO extra heat from the hubs. I temp everything while on a trip longer than 50 miles.
IMG_20180716_145223.jpg

Got everything cleaned up and inspected.
IMG_20180716_144458.jpg

Got all new parts from Big Mike. And re-assembled/torqued per the TM. Huge sigh of relief when this job was done and I knew things were squared away.
IMG_20180717_143017.jpg

This was a big lesson learned. I've been reading on this page since 2006. I've been on every group I can find in fb land. And everyone....EVERYONE says it, and I didn't heed the warnings.

If you are a first time truck buyer, bring the truck home and go through your hubs!! Brakes. Bearings. Grease. Fluids. I'm just another voice for you to ignore, but I have added annual hub inspections to my shop calendar now because of this. And to be honest, I should have done it a long time ago.
 

nchittendon

Active member
543
26
28
Location
La Crosse, Wisconsin
Fourth of July was quickly approaching. Well, on the 4th itself we had a pretty nasty storm, so our Independence didn't get celebrated until the 5th. Which worked out because then I had off from work and could actually go.

We found our spot early...
IMG_20180705_200837.jpg

My boys and I endured the mosquitoes and enjoyed the show! We had the best seats in the house.
IMG_20180705_214043.jpgIMG_20180705_214056.jpgIMG_20180705_214110.jpg
 

tobyS

Well-known member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
4,565
329
83
Location
IN
Yep. I can't understand it, I have a full set of bearings, seals and flange gaskets for (the 2) 5 ton rear axles for about half of what they cost individually in the classified and no takers. Amazing more people don't need bearings.

It looks like you enjoyed your outing...have fun.
 

nchittendon

Active member
543
26
28
Location
La Crosse, Wisconsin
Then we finally got to our big trip.

My two older boys (11yo and 6yo) were preparing to take our deuce and M105C (camper) to the Oshkosh airshow. This was it. This was our big excursion for the year. This is what has replaced Iola for us.

We had the ride of our lifetimes.

We left home on the Saturday before the show's official launch. Loaded up everything in our truck and camper. And honestly, we put blankets, pillows, sheets, and our food tote in the trailer and it was ready to rock. That was the whole point of the trailer. Oh, wanna go camping? Hook the trailer, load it with food and bedding, and leave. The only things we had to pack and load up were clothes, bikes, and truck essentials (tools, jack, oils, etc).

We had pre-purchased as much as we could. I got our EAA membership to help with discounts. I got our wristbands for the entire week. And we were camping there for an entire week.

Sunday the grounds aren't "open" per say. The vendors are all still setting up and what not, but you can still go recon. We used sunday to get used to the tram routes, and to recon what we wanted to see in comparison to how the map was laid out.
Monday is the first official day. We were woken up by the B1 Bomber buzzing the campground. What a feeling/sound that makes. What a magnificent bird. We woke up and headed towards the war birds area. Thats where my soul resides. Watching all the P51's and F4's taxi in, literally a couple feet in front of you. Listening to their engines pop and the propellers slap the wind out of the way while they idle by.......music you never hear on the radio.
The food on location was a little spendy, but it's no different than a football game, or something similar. We were prepared for that.
Tuesday was the first day we paid attention to the actual air show portion of it. Again, the sounds and feelings created when some of these are within a couple dozen feet of your head.....breathtaking.

38126047_10216539510662349_4735612403490750464_n.jpg38130107_289226841838145_9161614852429447168_o.jpg38267365_289227501838079_7836947844857593856_o.jpg
I literally have THOUSANDS and thousands of pictures. I didn't take one of them. Next year, I won't even bother taking pictures of the aircraft. Some of the photography equipment there was probably as expensive as the private planes. But the pictures some of these folks took were out of this world. My hats off to them. I did take pictures of the boys, and our personal things that we did on the ground. But the aircraft photos......leave it to the pros.

Wednesday. This was the big day in our itinerary. This was the day I had dreamed about since I was a kid. This checked off so many items on my bucket list I could have died before dinner time. I'm still not even sure that my kids understand the scope of what we did. Wednesday we took a ride on a 1945 B17 Flying Fortress. This is the only photo that I took of that. During the flight I did a live stream on fb, and both kids had gopro cameras on them during the entire flight. We were in the air for about 40 minutes total. About an hour for the entire trip, tire chock to tire chock. I found that my 11yo doesn't really do well in the air. He swears he had fun, but his tummy wasn't sure about the whole flying thing. The 6yo on the other hand.....he was hooting and hollering the entire time. Once we were airborne we could move about the craft. I couldn't catch him after that. He was all over that thing. But the nose.......the nose was something I could never find the words to express. Seriously. I'm getting all emotional just sitting here typing this. This B17 experience was something i've done with my boys that will always be immortalized. I'm currently editing the footage from all 3 cameras. Then I will figure out how to post the video here (never done video on here before).
IMG_20180725_122725.jpg

We landed. got lunch. And just talked. About 4 million miles an hour. All three of us at once. People around us were entertained i'm sure. I got a lot of high fives and, "nice job dad" from folks. The boys were telling random strangers about riding in the B17 and some of them didn't even believe them. haha. Once we calmed down a bit, and got some food in our bellies (we went up with the tanks empty just in case), I told the boys that I didn't care what we did the remainder of the week. I would follow them to anything they wanted to do.

Thursday we spent the day at Kidventure. This place was really cool. We could have spent the entire week there if we had the time. It was here that they watched a video about the Tuskegee Airmen. They thought it was "neat." But then....upon walking out of the little theater, they were able to get an autographed picture from one of the original Tuskegee Airmen himself!! He was 99 years old. The boys got a selfie with him too. Like I said, they thought the video was "ok." But after meeting him, and getting their pictures taken, then it just seemed to become REAL for them. The 11yo was obsessed at that point. Talking about the p-51 and asking tons of questions about segregation and trying to wrap his head around the whole thing. It was cool to see him completely immersed in history like that. See honey, he's not the mailman's kid. He's definitely mine after witnessing that passion for history.

Friday we did more wandering. Hit up Warbirds again. Did more flight simulators. My oldest was digging the Apache simulator at the Army trailer. We hit it every single day. By Thursday/Friday the guys working the simulator would crank up the difficulty and were quite impressed at how my boy did. I had to tell them repeatedly that he was only 11, they can't have him just yet. He would start flying, and they would lean out the door, "hey guys get in here and watch this kid. This is the kid I told you about from yesterday!" lol. It was pretty awesome.

Saturday we just hung out. Did some more airshow type things. Hit up the sea plane base. Just sat back and took a deep breath and tried to process everything that we had just experienced.

Sunday we rolled out, and headed home.

Now, i'm going to rewind a bit. Upon arriving at Oshkosh, we stopped at the KT just outside the gate to contact my dad for directions to where he was parked. While sitting there, my son noticed a puddle under the truck. Oh yeah, it was ours. Oil. Right where the bellhousing attached to the engine. #$##$^#$%&$%&$%*%^*$%!!!!!!!!!! You know what, don't care. We are going to enjoy the week and i'll figure this out as we go. As the week went on I started by taking the little cover off at the bottom of the tranny. Lots of oil in there. Got some brake cleaner, and hosed everything down that I could up in there. Asked around a bit and decided that just to get us home we were going to throw some Bars Leaks in there. Glad I did. I put 5 cans of it in the engine. Once we got home, there was no more leak. Since then I've putted around town and no puddles at my stops. Looks like a clutch and rear main seal has been shoved WAY up to the top of the list of things to do on this truck. Luckily I figured it would be a thing eventually, so i'm not even intimidated. Just waiting for the time to knock it out.
 

nchittendon

Active member
543
26
28
Location
La Crosse, Wisconsin
Another item I was after was comms and headsets for my truck. Long trips like this stink because if you want to talk to anyone else, you're shouting. Doing that for 4 hours is just dumb. So I wanted the neat little box that ran off a 9v battery, and some headsets. I figured the swap meet area was the place to find that.

Never once stepped foot at the swap meet. I heard it was nice.

I posted up on the EAA fb page before leaving letting everyone know what I would be searching for. A guy messaged me and said he had upgraded so many times, he had totes upon totes and I was welcome to sift through them. He even brought them to me at my campsite because he wanted to see the truck.

I didn't really have to do any wheeling and dealing. By the time he was done sifting through, he had 4 headsets laid out and a comm box. One of the headsets was brand new in the box yet. I was worried I didn't budget enough, since I originally told him I needed TWO headsets and a comm box. So I finally spoke..."what do you gotta have for all of these, then?" He looks it all over. Finger on his chin. My heart was racing. I don't mind throwing cash around, but I get embarrassed easy when my eyes are bigger than my wallet. I had budgeted $500 for the two headsets and comm box. He throws out his number...."$150 and you can have what's laying there."

This trip just got a whole lot cooler.

IMG_20180724_212946.jpgIMG_20180724_213042.jpg

The ride home was awesome. I learned that I couldn't have the windshields open due to the wind noise. But we could talk at a church volume and hear each other perfectly. This was by far one of the top 3 best investments for the truck to date.
 

nchittendon

Active member
543
26
28
Location
La Crosse, Wisconsin
And then, suddenly, it's August.

Some friends invited us to go camping at a local-ish campground. We were still in the mood, so we hooked up the trailer and headed out.

This little excursion was monumental for us though. I'll tell you why.

My wife hates, hates, hates the truck. She hates everything about it. It smells funny. It's loud. It's dumb. It's useless.

Well, this weekend of camping helped us bridge a lot of gaps.

First, I'll note that when I designed the M105C (camper), it was just momma and I, and the two older boys. So the trailer has a twin matress, and two bunk beds. Since then, we've had another bouncing baby boy. He's almost 2. I mentioned going camping, and she asked if her and the little one were invited. Well of course you are. You are always invited. Always. Typically the hang up is that the truck only rides 3. She would have to drive separate and she won't do that. That, apparently, is my fault. Hopefully this winter my quad cab project kicks off and we resolve that problem.

Anyways, she wants to go to. She asks where she will sleep? I told her that her and the baby can sleep in the trailer with the boys, and I'll put an air mattress in the back of the deuce. Worked out slick. Momma had fun. The boys all had fun. The truck was perfect as always. And she even participated which is huge in my eyes.

Hopefully soon the bed will be removed from the truck. We are going to cut 4 feet out of it. I am going to make it a 4 door truck. And I will build her and I a master suite in the back of the deuce. The boys can have the trailer. To be continued.....

FB_IMG_1535241080360.jpgIMG_20180824_151021.jpgIMG_20180824_151037.jpgIMG_20180824_151110.jpg
 

tobyS

Well-known member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
4,565
329
83
Location
IN
Good write up. I wanted to go to Oshkosh this year but didn't...just like the year before and the year before that. Sounds like a great time, something your boys will remember forever. I used to go every year, back when we were building "experimental" planes. I helped on a "Veri-eze" and a wooden amphibious plane, an "Osprey". One of the more memorable times was having long conversation with Zoche Aero Diesel, radial, highly turbocharged, 2 cycle diesel engines company owner. My dad was crew chief on a B17, top gunner (he's 93). They were shot down on the first mission, ditched in the English Channel, got rescued and the crew flew 35 bombing runs. Dad said the first B-17 first models didn't have a tail gun but the enemy kept coming up behind in the vapor trails, so they added a tail gunner. He just did a video for the museum, telling some stories I had not heard.
 
Last edited:

nchittendon

Active member
543
26
28
Location
La Crosse, Wisconsin
Used the truck again to haul people around my company's annual family picnic. Over 3000 in attendance this year. The deuce was a hit yet again. So many people we were double stacking some.
IMG_20181013_170336.jpg

The weekend before the event, an issue brought itself to the top of the priority list. My throttle pedal has always been a little ......."sticky." Some days worse than others. Some days driving it was fine. Let's say "normal." Other days I would have to put some force on my heel while letting off to the RPM's would calm down between shifts, etc. Well, before this event where I would be hauling people around in the back of her, I decided to take the throttle pedal apart and see just what was going on.

It wasn't pretty. The pin was just about completely seized. It was to the point where it was flexing the floor while driving, and I didn't even notice it. It took some heat, and some hammering to get the pin out. Trying to be careful since it's a steel pin and an aluminum pedal. Got it all apart. Cleaned up the pin and bore real good. Lubed it up real good and got it all back together. It feels like a BRAND NEW TRUCK now!! I couldn't believe the difference. Even my throttle lever for setting my idle up moves better, which makes sense to me. I felt so sorry that I made her endure this issue for so long. She tried to tell me, but I just wasn't listening.

Chock this up as another item that will be thoroughly inspected at a minimum bi-annually.
IMG_20181012_121421.jpg
 

nchittendon

Active member
543
26
28
Location
La Crosse, Wisconsin
Getting really excited for this next project!

They say she will run on just about anything, but apparently whiskey makes her clothes fall off....

IMG_20181004_160255.jpgIMG_20181118_143632.jpgIMG_20181129_141358.jpg

Tomorrow I remove the license plate, trailer lighting plug, and mud flaps. Saturday, we load her on a flatbed to go a buddy's shop.

This is just a quick photoshop of my plans. The bed is getting 38 inches cut out of it. I will be placing a second cab onto it to make it more family friendly for our uses. The front seats will be air ride. The back seat, i'm envisioning, will be like a 70/30 bench out of a Ford Explorer, or something similar (I think i've read that one before actually). My M105 has been converted into a camper. When I originally designed it, I had 2 kids. Now I have three. So, the trailer will house the boys when we are camping, and the rear of the truck will be converted into the mom and pop suite.
mock up.jpg
 

Aussie Bloke

Active member
632
71
28
Location
Out bush in OZ
G'day everyone,.....


Got any more details on the Com box?

Would love to know how it works,....

I'm guessing a 3-4 channel input run through and amp with 3-4 channel output,.....?




Aussie.
 

nchittendon

Active member
543
26
28
Location
La Crosse, Wisconsin
Took her to work the other day and got some pictures. I drive past the new huge bakery my company built, and it has this large blank white wall. Seemed like the perfect setting with the white on the ground too.

50297058_10161737875035657_7643697810008702976_n.jpg50568685_10161737874905657_5068284618730373120_n (1).jpg50803425_10161737874765657_8627180840448688128_n.jpg50846575_10161737874955657_835866692398612480_n.jpg
 

nchittendon

Active member
543
26
28
Location
La Crosse, Wisconsin
So this summer hit me like a freight train!

Last we saw, the truck was running around with bare frame in the back. The bed was shipped off to get shortened up, and I had a lot of work ahead of me. I'll try to keep this in order time wise...

~ I removed the spare tire carrier.
~ I took the grinder and needle scaler after the frame.
~ hit it with red oxide primer and then tan. Lots and lots of tan.
~ the bed got 38" cut out of it to make room for the second cab.
~ my guy took the 38" out of the middle to rid the bed of any rotten, or potentially rotting metal. One of the braces he removed was then added back in right below the seam where he welded it back together.
~ got it home and mounted the bed back onto the truck (in the pouring rain)
~ surprisingly, the rear mount brackets on the frame all lined up perfectly. The front "double" with the springs was removed from the frame to be added back on later when I knew exactly where.
~ sanded the bed down to bare metal. gave it the same red oxide primer and tan paint treatment. Also added new reflector set. All hardware is also now stainless.
~ my oldest son helped with the sanding and painting.
~ Shortened up the troop seats because she has an obligation one last time to haul people for my work picnic this fall. Also re-installed the cargo cover.

~all the while this is going on, i'm also adding solar power to my M105 camper trailer. I'll pick that up in a post all it's own down the line here.



**note** for some reason I can't get pictures to upload right now. I'll try again later.
 
Top
AdBlock Detected

We get it, advertisements are annoying!

Sure, ad-blocking software does a great job at blocking ads, but it also blocks useful features of our website like our supporting vendors. Their ads help keep Steel Soldiers going. Please consider disabling your ad blockers for the site. Thanks!

I've Disabled AdBlock
No Thanks