26 August 2012

Copper Lust....hit the jackpot at the jobsite Saturday

 A couple of weeks ago my son came up from College Station to pick up some rock crawler parts from a friend of his in the DFW area. Got a Dana 60 or 70? rear end, a turbo 400 tranny, and some big-assed rock crawler tires and wheels. He's planning to build a Caddy powered crawler and has been gathering parts. He sold his old Samari 4 cylinder crawler a few weeks ago. 
 He brought me a 105 gallon diesel tank that needed some repairs. He welded a plate across the end bottom corner, but when he filled it with water to test it, it had a few pin-hole leaks along the weld bead. My wire welder should have done the trick, but since I never use it the wire spool got a little rusty and he couldn't get a good tight bead. Fixed most areas, but needs to be drained down and re welded in 2 spots to stop the leaks. We pumped it out with a Harbor Freight 12V pump, but he was running late on time and had to skedaddle. I didn't have a fresh spool of wire anyway.
 With this tank sitting in the back of my old 1985 F250 Lariat diesel....I'll have about 140 gallons of capacity...enough to get me to the cabin and back with one fill up. At the terrible 12 MPG this old dawg gets (they didn't have auto-trans OD back then, revs up way high at highway speeds) that's about 1600 miles after the $560 fill up.
 My "Benita"....made with loving care by little Japanese hands..(Pre Fuk-us-shima era). Needs a lift kit, but can't seem to let go of the $685 for the kit alone....no install labor in that figure. Gas powered cart with a back seat. Hauls my obese butt around quite handily.
 At the workplace I was finally able to get the excavation/demo sub to tear down the old ground mounted power transformer bldg that served the entire 168 apts - 10 acre site. We installed new underground elect distribution and the old bldg and transformers had to go. The power company field rep looked at the 3 giant transformers sitting inside a brick walled bldg and called them "widow makers"..said even after they are disconnected they can hold enough juice to arc out and kill a man that get's within 3 feet of them. Well Oncor finally got the trannys (that don't sound fight)....and hauled them away, leaving the bldg for us to demo.
 There was a big massive disconnect box on the outside wall and 3 big metal plates penetrated thru the wall up high. I had studied them from the ground and thought...."now how can I get my hands on these plates, that looked to be copper?"....dull green, not corroded. Yesterday, being Saturday, like always...I felt compelled to make the 50 mile drive across Fort Worth, Arlington, and into Irving to the jobsite to check on things.
 The demo foreman was there with his big shiney Volvo track loader with the hydra-hoe attachment and started knocking down those double wide brick walls like they were made of sugar cubes. I told him I wanted to try to save that area where the metal came through and he gently knocked the bricks away from each side and picked it up and dumped it off to one side. I plucked out these big "L shaped" plates and huffing and puffing, hauled them out of harms way. I figured them to weigh around 50-60# each...eventually got them into the trunk of my "old" Towcar...sticking out the back a foot or so...wired the trunk lid somewhat down with some baling wire and off I went. Towncars have HUGE trunk areas, but not enough for these to close.
 Sweet talked Nephew Joe into coming over Sunday AM for a little work and he took them apart with my Harbor Freight impact wrench. Here are some big heavy gauge cable connectors made of brass that came off a couple of them. I stacked them up against a saw horse for a decent pic, turned around to grab the camera and "crash-bang-biff-Pow"..the saw horse fell over. Oh well, you get the picture. Haven't weighed them, but the middle sized plates are 12# each.....Not sure of the scrap value...I think around $3/lb or so. But I might get my son to slice them in half lengthwise with his fancy plasma cutter machine and they'd make great battery connector bars. But then again maybe $500 in scrap = most of the lift kit cost for the golf cart...a "Jake's brand, USA made..6" travel, long arm, adjustable" kit....the exact kind I would need around the cabin roads in South Brewster Co.?
Oh and here is an interior finished shot of the12,000 btu Mini-split....super quiet.. running day and night. Sucks out alot of humidity too. We turned off the other noisy but strong-cooling, old Sears Coldspot window unit in the bedroom and only run this one. Keeps our little place cool and it's gotta be saving alot of cooling costs with the 23 SEER rating and 110V usage. That little flap on the lower end, slowly rotates up and down to push air across the room and then down in front....or you can freeze it in one spot to stay if you like. (It's a heat pump too, but I prefer cozy propane or kerosene heat....but we will test it this winter)

Nice and cloudy here today, off and on light sprinkles....seems like summer just instantly switched to almost fall....like overnight. 110 temps a couple of weeks ago, now lower to mid 90's forecast for next week here in DFW area.

Ok....blah, blah...blah..sorry, long post today.

Everyone take care and HAGD



MsBelinda said...

Nice 1985 pick up truck but wow, it sure drinks up a lot of fuel. The good thing is that you can fill up at reasonable prices in the DFW area unlike Brewster county.

Like your "Benita" golf cart, looks like some of the ones people decorate for the chili cook-off.

Looks like a trip to the scrap yard is in order for that lift kit.

tffnguy said...

Interesting post all the way down. Don't know how I missed this, but I don't do much blogging or following them anymore.

Surely you could build your own lift kit for the Benita cart for a lot less?

Those buss bars might sell for more than $3 a pound down here and get put to good use.

bigfoot said...

Nope...I'm not gonna scrap these bars. Need to get my boy to slice them up into 1.5" strips for battery connectors.

Wonder if 48 yr old copper is any different/better than new? Naw....copper is copper I reckon.