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Now that I have a workbench that is usable I wanted to start getting the hub(s) torn down for the Land Rover to see if there are any more surprises waiting for me.
Even though I had cleaned it with the pressure washer before there was still enough oily grime to make my hands too dirty to use my phone.
I must admit, this did surprise me a little. This is the joint that allows the drive to flex as the wheels turn. In newer cars and ever slightly newer Land Rovers these are CV joints not a simple universal joint like this. However these do have the advantage of being simple, easy to replace and not much to wear out. This one is in quite good condition and has no play in it at all. So that's one part I don't need to replace.
However this may be a problem. There appears to be a crusted up bit on the tapered section to the left of the land that the bearing runs on. I'll have to double check the other hub as I disassemble it to see if this needs to be a smooth surface. If it doesn't that that finish will be fine as there is nothing loose or flaky on it. But if there is a bearing or seal on it, then the tapered part will need replacing.
Just like christmas again. I sprayed down the driveshaft with a fair bit of WD-40, then wrapped it in pallet wrap. These parts will be stored in an un-heated spot and it could be a little while for everything to arrive that I will need to get this put back together. So I'd rather do this and have to cut it off once I'm ready for them then have to clean up rusty parts that were fine.
It took me a few seconds to work out how the seal come off from here. Turns out it is just a close fit around the flange.
Oooh, Shiny. This is in quite good condition, with no pitting. The flange is a little dirty but there are no problems here.
So this gets the same spray and wrap treatment.

That's all I've got so far. I will be pulling apart and cleaning the parts of the freewheeling hubs next. As I'm disassembling everything I am making sure it is clean enough for it to be put back into service without any extra work. So it is taking a little while to get it done. But you can be sure it will get done.

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Some of you may have seen on facebook that I have been building a workbench from mostly stuff that would otherwise get thrown away.
It started out as 3.6m long pallets that work needed to get rid of. So I took a couple to disassemble into more useful parts. I've used the planking from the top and bottom and made sure that I took out all of the nails. I then glued the faces of each of these together until I had a big enough block of timber. I then cut this in half so the bench would be a sensible size for my workspace.
The ends are not quite even because there were some chunks out of the ends of some planks. I put all of these at one end so I could cut off the worst of it all at once.

It looks a lot worse in this picture than in person. But I planed down the biggest misalignments and glue runs on what would become the top.
Then it was time to get ready for the glue up. To make sure that I didn't glue the bench to the sawhorses I put some pallet wrap around them.
Doing a dry fit to make sure there wouldn't be any gaps one everything was pulled up.
You can just see some light through here. This needed to get fixed.
To fix it I found the high spot and just took a little material off with the plane until it was pretty even on the straightedge.
Here we are, gluing in process. I put some pallet wrap around the joint as well to stop drips landing on the ground and on my straps.
Unfortunately I did have a little split open up during gluing. I think this was because I tightened the straps differently which meant that the one at this end would have been slightly slacker. I'm not worried about this as I can either chop out a section and inset a new piece, or more easily I can make an appropriate wedge and glue that in there.
Because I didn't plane down or level off the bottom side of the table at all I needed to cut rebates through the high points for the cross bars of the frame I am using. To mark them I used a chisel.
And this is the hammer I have been using with the chisel. Yes it is just a random hunk of wood. And yes there are characteristics it has that I would like to be different. But it works surprisingly well, is not heavy enough to be tiring and I don't need to worry about breaking or wearing it out as I can very easily find another just as good.
I cut down along the marked lines with a saw to about the depth of the lowest plank. Then I chopped out the middle with the chisel. It probably would have been easier if I'd made the trench a bit wider so  it was the same width as the chisel. That would have made it much easier to get a nice clean even trench. As it was, it wasn't too bad.
 And there you have it. There is still some work to be done in making it nice and flat and even. But at this point I need a workbench and this is now flat enough for me to start using it.

I even have it covered in stuff already.

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Yesterday I continued on with the work I discovered I need to do on the Land Rover the other day. Namely to remove the front axle so I can get easily to all sides of the hub assemblies and the diff because they seem to have managed to fill with water and grit.
This jack has been doing quite a bit of work since I bought this land rover. It is just the one that came with my ute for replacing the occasional flat. Whereas for a while now it has been lifting up the land rover almost regularly to pretty close to the limits of the jack.
Hmmm. There seems to be a problem here. Unfortunately the wheels had to come off to be able to fit under the bullbar.
That will fit a bit better.
Now I found another problem. This whole assembly is way yonder too heavy for me to pick up and put the wheels back on. So I just dragged it until it would be in a spot where I can pull it apart without it getting in the way.
This process has made me want to remove everything and do a complete restoration rather than just a quick get back on the road. This rod (Not sure what it's called. Ties the hubs together so they turn at the same time.) has ball joints at each end. This is what they look like:
There is no more rubber boots at either end and both of them are stiff and don't really move very well at all. These will both need to be replaced and I will need to check the other ball joints as well. Also when I detached the prop shaft from the diff I discovered that the bolts were surprisingly loose.
These are issues that would get fixed with normal maintenance on any car but from the previous use I was told about. There would have been between practically none and actually none.

One grotty hub with the axle still in. I figured that I would clean everything up a bit so it's a little nicer while I'm pulling this all apart.
It's a bit hard to tell in the pictures, but just a few minutes with the pressure washer and the bulk of the grot and oil have been washed off. As it was starting to get pretty warm and I had been hit with a fair bit of spray from cleaning this up and needed a shower. I decided to call it a day. So a heavy coat of WD-40 and this is ready for me to finish pulling apart and cleaning properly.

I'm tossing up while I have everything apart getting some proper chassis paint and cleaning everything with a wire wheel and painting it properly.

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In a stark contrast to yesterday when I spent the day inside in the air conditioning, I decided to go down to the Zig Zag Railway today and sweat a bit. Or a lot. More like a lot.

We decided to replace a couple more sleepers along middle road that have become damaged. This contraption is a sleeper puller that makes this job much easier. All you need to do is pull some levers and it will pull out the old sleeper. Then line up the new one and push it home with the power of hydraulics.

The way this machine has been built is quite simple. A petrol fueled hydraulic power pack that is just connected on the the valving. This meant that during construction an off the shelf part could be used. Eliminating the complicated and fiddly design and set up of petrol motor, hydraulic pump & reservoirs and cooling for each.

Unfortunately there seems to be a problem with the fuel pump. Once we had pretty much finished the first sleeper we started having fuel starvation issues. With the motor stumbling then picking itself back up again. Eventually it died and we finished off that sleeper by hand. We were able to get it started again by getting the fuel filter filled. However that only lased a few minutes before we had to fill it again. Eventually we did get both sleepers changed and are now in place ready for baseplates & spikes.

Heading back down for lunch. He seems to be pretty keen for it!

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