Thursday, 13 July 2017

Midsummer Paddle

The day started overcast, so the tourists stayed away. That's how we like it, the animals and I.

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Uplifting Jimny bits

 It was  obvious that the shock absorbers on our little Jimny were tired, so replacements were sourced. It seemed a good idea to take the opportunity to upgrade to a stronger set of springs and uprated shock absorbers. We chose the 2 inch lifted set springs with Black Raptor shocks from Jimnybits in the UK.  This turned out to be a great choice. Our order was with us in a matter of days and when I called for some information the person on the phone was very knowledgeable, friendly and helpful.

Here you can see the difference. The Raptors are not only longer, but bigger too. 
The springs are much longer and a little thicker too. 

The front springs in place. To prevent damage to the brake hoses, I unbolted the calipers, so the axle could be lowered far enough to insert the springs. I also unclipped the abs wire at the front axle temporarily to prevent damage.
 Rear assembly complete. The tricky bit here is to fit the springs without putting too much tension on the rear brake hose.
Now the Jimny looks a bit taller, but driving comfort and stability are not impaired. I would say they might even be better.

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Rusty Iron Men, Fast Horses and Merry maidens

Once in a while the old castle is besieged in a friendly way by re-enactors. This time it was the venue the annual Jousting tournament of the Lowlands, so all kinds of medieval folk journeyed to our little town.

Different sized tents were erected and everyone was dressed up to give the public an almost realistic view of the past.  
Of course common footfolk were supposed to stay out of the way of the nobles on horseback eager to pose for a camera.
All kinds of trade were represented
 Acrobats showed their tricks..

As did this "thief", looking for an opportunity to perform his art.

The Sheriff and his patrol on the lookout for mischief. Followed by some freelance Vikings looking for some entertainment.
 These people relaxed in style.
Meanwhile some of the lesser knights were on foot, showing their longsword combat skills in a serious match.

 For some reason this warrior didn't impress us much, though he fought well.

 I don't know what this looks like.
 The portrait painter displayed a very convincing self-portrait.
 Big men weaving baskets. Very nice baskets too.
We already knew vegetarianism wasn't popular in the Middle ages.

 This musician demonstrated the possibilities of his bagpipes.
 We never had the opportunity to see inside the old castle barn, but this time the doors were open.
 So now we could inspect the old beamed roof.
 Some of the visitors were also dressed in style.
 Weather stayed almost dry, despite the threatening skies.
 Visitors could participate in heritage activities. This kid was lucky his mom was so focused on taking his picture, she missed the authentic basked of rotten apples available.
 Robin hood's cousin pondering taking a rest from archery.
This portable forge would be a handy piece of equipment in our garage. Mostly built out of wood , leather and a little iron.  
 Old crusader dude directing traffic and proposing to suitable young lady visitors
 Playing target for the archers.
 Now we get to the serious contenders. Knight in full armour and his cool ride all revved up.
It's a bit like a dragrace in opposite directions with flagpoles. This is the warm up heat.
Then the maiden hands over the lance.
And then they charge and try to hit each others shield for points. When they hit the lance breaks in a shower of wood and the referee grants three points for the hit. The horses seem to like this sport , so the are eager to start, but there are some more points for actually stopping at the start of the run. The fiercest horses don't care about stopping at all, so they lose points here.
Experts at the sideline discuss the score.
After the tournament winners and runners up compare notes.

Eager fans ask for a signature before heading home.

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Jimny roof rack and leaky free wheeling hub engagement repair

It's a good thing I checked the roofrails on little Jimmny before fitting carriers on the rails and throwing the Oztent on top.
The rear fittings are metal, but the front bases of the rails are made of hard plastic.
Under these there are two little bolts sticking up from the roof on each corner, so that would be the obvious mounting for something a little stronger.

I had a set of very old roof carriers, so I decided to modify these to fit the mounting points by cutting them to size and bending the end to form a "foot".

Then the bent end was welded up for strength and two holes were drilled in each foot.
After all this I could mount the complete assembly on some rubber gasket on de studs on the roof.  
 There we are, a useful set of carriers for the Jimny.
Job done? No. there was another niggle to fix.
 The vacuum operated freewheeling hubs stopped working again. Clearly something caused by another leaking hose. And I'd recently sprayed the axles and underbody with a lot of sticky anti rust compound.
Disconnecting the various lines and blowing through them with another lenght of hose, I finally located a leak in the rusty pipe near the left front wheel. 
Cut both "engage" and "disengage" pipes off and replaced the rusty ends and any other rusty bit of pipe I could find with new hoses and copper pipe.
 Now we have a solid "thunk" when engaging 4wd and an unblinking 4wd light and some piecese of leftover rusty pipe.