Tuesday, November 29, 2016


The grading, retaining wall, steps, foundations and frame are complete and the fence has been relocated. Two cross members will be added as soon as I get the measurements for the two interior posts that will support the roof center beam.

 200 - 60 lb. bags of concrete were used to do the wall,steps, foundation's and fence posts.

 We have decided to use Pre-Insulated Steel Framed Structural Panels to build the entire structure - floor,walls and ceiling/roof. Below is a mock up of the wall section that is made with steel frame injected with expanded polystyrene beads creating panels from approximately 6 inches wide to 48 inches wide, and a maximum height of 12 feet.
 This is the roof beam that will support the 18 roof panels with a small pitch.

 Above and below is a section of wall panels that show the upper and lower "C" channels that secure the panels and the tongue and groove  between panels that make them air tight. The studs are laid flat on opposite sides so no hot or cold is transmitted through the metal.
 Karen and I are in front of a mock up wall that shows that any shape or opening be made.
 The pictures below show how a completed building is constructed when finished. This building is on a concrete slab with the AIRLIGHT  walls and ceiling / roof panels.
 The company that makes these panel is AIRLIGHT Building Panels in Kingman AZ.           WWW.wanessa-sue.com.
 We were going to build the caboose with lumber then when we went to the Veterans Day car show we parked next to a antique fire truck with a sign AIRLIGHT Building Panels and ask for information on them. Then the following week we went to the manufacturing location and found out the entire building could be built including the floor, that will hold +20,420 lbs. that's 5105 per foot, and all the panels have an effective "R" value of 30, we were sold.
 The owner, Wanessa, was able to provide a proposal that was within our budget with some drawings I had done of the floor plan and some elevations. We have made a deposit and Wanessa will proceed with final drawings.  

Thursday, November 17, 2016


We took the 60 Starliner to the Veterans Day Car Show in Kingman Az on Friday the 11 held in the Wal Mart Parking lot. There was a good turn out with about 100 cars for the fund raiser.

 Hackberry Auto Body (Joe) Shelby supercharged Mustang that he bought wrecked and restored. He did the 69 mustang for us and is now working on our 65 Thunderbird.

 Good verity of car's, trucks and motorcycle's showed up.

 This rat rod is twin turbo charged.
 Nice Pontiac convertible.

 Karen and Charlie (dog) enjoyed the nice weather.

Thursday, November 10, 2016


The 65 T-Bird went to Hackberry Auto body to get the engine compartment and other parts painted. I will get it back in about 2 weeks to install the engine and get it running.

 All loaded up and ready to go.

 This is at the body shop taking some of the body parts off. The engine compartment had been painted but we decided that we did not like the Chantilly Beige.

 The Caboose project is coming along in the two pictures below I am fabricating the frame from 2-1/2 X 8-1/2 channel left over from another project.
 The two frame rails are 36' each and I have 14' pieces of channel so each rail is made up of 2-14' with 4' on each end. They were laid out on the shop floor and splice plates were welded on each end and the support legs welded on.
 The frame was set on two saw horses and painted.
 The foundations are 2'X2'X2.5' blocks and a jack was used to get it level and at the correct height.
 This is the second 14' rail fabricated and ready to go out to the site. 
 The pictures below show the completed 36' frame with the concrete poured.

Here you can see how the splice plate is used to join the sections together.
 Next I will fab the second frame rail up, dig and form the foundations then complete the frame with end and center cross members.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016


While I'm waiting for the Thunderbird to go to Hackbeery Auto Body for the engine compartment to be painted, that should be next week, I will work on the Caboose project. We have picked out a color for the T-Bird that is "Blazin Copper" or burnt orange. After the engine compartment is painted it will come back to me for the engine installation and to get it running then back to the body shop for final body work and paint.

 The three pictures below is the retaining wall being built that is 2 feet tall and 40 feet long.

 The finished wall.
 Stairs being formed and pored with stones set in the tops of each one.
 Finished 5' wide steps and upper & lower landing slabs.
 The wall and steps took 130 bags of 60 lb. concrete.
 Next the grading will be finished then the 10 foundation's will be laid out, dug and poured with the steel frame. The plan is to have the finished floor at the same height as the top of the wall to make easy access to the caboose for Karen.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016


Image result for caboose

For the past year when we go to Costco in Prescott, as there is none in Kingman, there is a Caboose right off I-40 near Ashfork  that my wife points out every time we pass it. This last trip she said that she has always wanted a Caboose and wanted to know if we could find one. When we checked into it they are very expensive and the cost to bring one to our property made it too costly for us to afford. During the search online we found a person in southern California  (Dogpatch and Western Railroad) that offers a kit with plans to build you own replica Caboose, so we sent for the plans and decided to build a Caboose.
First thing to do is pick and clear a location and we decided to put it on the north side of the house behind the RV shelter.

 The chain link fence was taken down and there was a lot of stored material that must be moved. The RV shelter is behind the tree.
 These are looking from the RV shelter up towards the house showing what had to be moved and the trees that must be taken out.
 Below is the view the Caboose will have looking North that will have a cupola, that is the look out structure on the roof.

 These two pictures are after everything is moved, the trees taken out and several days on the tractor moving dirt and leveling.
 The three pictures below is the form work with re-bar for the foundation of the rock retaining wall that will be in front and parallel with the 36 ft. long Caboose.

 Every 30 days all the cars get started and moved, during the last starting of the Kaiser a weird mechanical noise came from the engine and Karen was able to pin point it in the front part of the valve cover on the drivers side. In order to remove the valve cover the intake manifold had to removed. When I got the valve cover off the #5 intake rocker push rod had popped out and was hitting the valve cover and was bent. I did a compression check to make sure the piston and valve were OK, straightened the push rod and put it back in to check rocker and valve operation that looks good. I could find nothing else wrong so a new push rod has been ordered and I will put it back together.