It’s Alive!

Last night I finally got the stickiest lug nut off of the Bantha. It only took a blow torch and a four foot breaker bar to make it see the light, but I got the better of it in the end.

So, with that taken care of, I could finally take the front left wheel off, clean up the brakes, and install new lug nuts. I celebrated by finishing the job of replacing all the vacuum hoses. And today I replaced the leaky valve cover gasket, fired the beast up, and endangered two members of my family by taking them on a little ride up and down our street.

Afterwards, I tweaked the idle speed and adjusted the timing, then checked the vacuum just for fun. Remarkably, the vacuum is pretty strong—17.5 to 18 lbs—and fairly steady. It does dip every so often, so I suspect that it’s probably got a sticky valve. But given that it hasn’t been run in months, I’m hoping that a little use (and/or Sea Foam) will fix that. It’s truly amazing, given how rusty the frame is, to see the great shape that the engine is in. A true testament to the durability of this Toyota tractor engine.

Anyhow…I think that the worst is now over, so next week I plan on taking the Bantha to the nearest mechanic (about two block away) and getting it inspected. With a little luck, it’ll pass.

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