A light, airy, effervescent, blog of grave consequence. (NOT!) Dedicated to those of us who must respond to negative stimuli by Chernobyling (entombing in concrete) our innermost thoughts.

Location: Slaughter, Louisiana, United States

A semi-gruntled corporate reliability engineer trying to make ends meet while keeping my wife happy, and myself out of the asylum.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Tweaking the truck and trailer

So I've fitted a bed cover to the Mighty Ford in order to replace the Cherokee which has been sold. I like the cover a lot. It is a Bakflip G2 from BAK industries.

The installation took about an hour with twiddling and only required one wrench to tighten the clamps.

Interestingly, while attempting to route the rail drain hoses I found that Kent had stashed a hide-a-key box in one of the bed post sockets. So now I have both original keys from purchase.

Here are a few pictures of the new cover.





As you can see, the cover interfered with the nice aluminum box that was in the bed, so I had to remove it. After a bit of thought, I decided to mount it on my trailer to replace the plastic box that was starting to disintegrate from age and abuse. A quick trip to LeBlanc's for some stainless hardware and it's good to go.


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Big Rain a'Comin'

Looks like my drainage improvements at the front of the house are going to get a workout shortly.

The pupster is probably already under her favorite chair.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Freeze Plug Upgrade for Fuel Mileage.

So, not having a lot to do during my two hours of driving every day, I usually try to use several techniques to improve the fuel economy of my Stratus. I shut the engine off anytime I'm decelerating and am generally keeping the speed pretty low.

I've started to think about other cheapish ways to improve economy. The Stratus, effectively being a Mitsubishi Eclipse, has a crummy engine control unit. Upon cold startup the engine runs near 2000 rpm until the temperature gets up to nearly 140F. This means several minutes of driving every morning and throughout the day when the engine is trying to run much faster than it should and certainly at a less than necessary mixture.

So, I decided to install a block heater.

I got one from Amazon for $15 shipped and put it in last afternoon. Getting the freeze plug out of the block was a bit pf a chore but after 90 minutes of drilling hammering and snipping, I managed to remove it without barking up the machined surface of the block.

The new heater installed in minutes and this morning, having set my timer to run the unit for three hours before I got up, the water temp was a toasty 165F and the idle was much more managable.

I also found an outlet on the outside wall of my office building so I can keep it warm while I'm at work.

I managed 37.2 MPG out of the last tank I really worked at so we'll see if this makes much difference.