Ten Weeks Left: Crunch Time

Ten Weeks Left: Crunch Time

Ten Weeks Left = A Mad Dash Toward the Finish Line…

I’ve installed the new oil pan, and what a difference!  With that problem solved, I’m back on track.  Or am I?  As I was lying in bed Sunday night, I realized that I only have about ten weeks left before this car needs to be running.  Not necessarily done, but running.  Yes, a December 31, 2016 deadline is somewhat arbitrary, but it’s a concrete and clear goal.  There’s no strict reason it has to be that exact date, other than the fact that I’ve committed to it.  However, the approximate end-of-year deadline does have basis in other formal deadlines, namely the date that registration opens for the April Fabulous Fords Forever show at Knott’s Berry Farm.

The April 30, 2017 Ford show is the true deadline for when the car needs to be finished.  Backing into that date, having the car running nearly five months in advance should give enough cushion to handle the bugs.  I hope.  Is that an ambitious goal?  Yes.  But, I feel confident I’m working toward an achievable goal.

Planning for Completion

With ten weeks left, careful planning is going to play as much of a role as flawless execution.  I sat down Monday morning and did a mind sweep of the tasks remaining.  Of course I’ve kept a list of remaining items since I began the project.  But rather than just reviewing my existing list, I wanted to logically step through it all again for two reasons.  First, I wanted to check and make sure I had captured everything I knew in my project plan.  Second, I had the sense that some tasks could wait until after the car was running.

In no particular order, here are some of the things I need to take care of in the ten weeks remaining:

  • Build carburetor heat stove
  • Install export brace cowl reinforcement
  • Lay carpet (it won’t take long, and I’d rather only install the driver’s seat once)
  • Upholster & install driver’s seat (passenger and rear seat can wait)
  • Connect power steering hoses
  • Investigate and repair right rear brake bleeder leak (I won’t start a car that doesn’t have good, solid brakes)
  • Install instrument cluster (so I know if I have oil pressure, etc.)
  • Rebuild parking brake linkage (I don’t want the car going anywhere!)
  • Slide outer steering column onto the sector shaft
  • Connect and install temporary exhaust (so I don’t deafen the neighborhood)
  • Check brake, fuel, and coolant line clips (I’d hate to catch on fire)
  • Re-bleed hydraulic clutch

De-Prioritizing the Non-Essentials

You’ll notice a few things aren’t on the list.  I won’t be installing the a/c ducts until I finish the rest of the interior.  I don’t have the right brackets, nor do I have the time to mess with them, so I won’t install the radio.  The coolant recovery tank isn’t essential, so I’ll install it after I have the car running.  Basically, my theme now is: only focus on the things I need to make the car run and drive.  But even with that guiding principle and the seemingly short list above, I’m still in for a mad dash to the finish line.  So, if you don’t see me until New Year’s, you’ll know where I am!