So, what happens when you take a dying John Deere front end loader/forklift that is older than most people in the Army today (the build date was in the early 70's, and actually probably saw part of Vietnam), and idiot Sergeant who loves to hotrod ANYTHING with wheels, and a lack of PMCS (Preventive Maintenance Checks and Services, basically checking your )(#$(*#$ fluids before using a vehicle)?
Yeah, he blew the )_(#$(#*$ engine to bits, which is hard to do considering how tough those engines were. The issue with that is simply the fact that John Deere engine supplier (I forgot which turd of a diesel company made the engine) doesn't make that model anymore. A few poor schlub mechanics, who were my dear friends had the terrible job of pull the old engine apart, taking a new engine that wasn't designed to fit into anything that ancient, and piecing it together into something that works correctly (most of the time). So, what does this have to do with my poor, poor pitiful welding self?
A huge ()*#$(*$# radiator.
Standing nearly 5' tall and weighing in at "OMG I need help with this thing!", it was a beast to deal with. And, nothing was in the same spot. Not one single dimension was the same. The endtanks were larger, the whole thing was thicker and taller than the original, and all the stupid hose fittings were completely and utterly wrong. *le sigh*
First mini-project: Fitting the side supports. This involved whacking a whole bunch of the original supports out and welding them back together. This wasn't particularly hard to do, just tedious to get everything correct, tack, uninstall, weld, re-install to check fitment, then "roll" it on the other side.
Second mini-project: Bracketry. I really should call this a mini project, because this took me a day and a half to measure elenventry trillion times and make sure all my recorded dimensions were correct and translated onto the new radiator which had no reference points that were the same as the old one.
I even had to make some new threaded blocks to fit the radiator support, which was the rear chassis uprights of the frame.
The beast sleeps:
The monster awaits it's new guts:
Third mini-project: Hose fittings. Since nothing was where it should be, and I, being a welder and having to do what I was told, no matter how much I didn't want to (the Army sucks like that), I took hole sales and various welding tools and even broke into the machine shop to make the new hose fittings. (Yes, I made some of the hose fittings, too. The shiny ones are mine. It didn't take long to make, I just had to pick myself up off the floor when one of the tubes I was turning down decided it would rather make a bee-line for my face. I am just thankful I have quick reflexes . . . The wall wasn't so lucky. heh)
And FINALLY, it was installed, BY ME because I didn't want any of the schubs ruining the radiator while craning it into position (I did everything myself with a forklift and a few straps, with a few disappointed mechanics watching over my shoulder. It's not my fault I hate fixing radiators . . . )