Painting and New Tools

Since receiving my shipment from Ron, I had been busy cleaning, priming, and painting parts.  I had decided from the beginning of this project that I would paint it myself, using Tisco “rattle can” paint.  I had no experience with automotive paint, did not initially own an air compressor and did not want to go to the expense of sending it out to be painted.  I may regret that decision in future years, but that was my decision and I was determined to make the best of it.  At this stage of this project, I did not feel right if I had not cleaned and painted at least one part each evening after work.  They hung in the garage from wire clothes hangers like some odd Christmas ornaments while they dried.  Once dry to the touch, I brought them into the house and stored them in my daughter’s closet since she was away at college.  I fully expected to have them in place on my tractor by the time she came home for Thanksgiving break.


One of the large parts to be painted was the gas tank.  It came with a coat of red paint and, having been stored inside, was relatively rust-free.  However, I did not think that red was the original color of these gas tanks and it was in desperate need of cleaning.  In removing the float for the gas gauge sending unit, I found that the float itself had stuck to the bottom of the tank and, as I removed it, part of the float remained stuck in the tank.  Another part to order. 


I started on the exterior paint removal on the gas tank with sandpaper.  That was tough work and only took paint off at the high points.  Somewhere in the process I decided I had also better have the inside of the gas tank thoroughly cleaned and checked for leaks.  I would hate to have it assembled and find a leak in the tank.  Another call to Tracy led me to the shop he uses to test and repair his radiators – they also do gas tanks.  Upon dropping off the tank, the shop manager took one whiff of the tank and told me it would need to be fully flushed and sealed.  This shop uses a product that is the same used to seal aircraft fuel tanks.  When I returned a couple of days later to pick up the tank I found they had also installed a new drain plug as they had been unable to free the existing plug.


Upon getting the tank home I returned in earnest to removing the old paint.  By now I had discovered the effectiveness of a wire wheel chucked into a 3/8” drill.  After removing all the old paint and again sanding to remove as much surface rust as possible, I wiped it down with paint thinner and proceeded to spray on a prime coat.  For a finish coat I had decided to use a new (to me) product I had found from Rust-Oleum® called Hammered Silver.  I was very pleased with how it turned out.  

It was probably about this time that I decided that I did need an air compressor after all.  After doing as much research as I could on the various types and sizes available, I purchased a 25 gal., 2 -stage “Craftsman Professional” from Sears.  It happened to be on sale and included an air powered 3/8” drive ratchet wrench.  A discontinued model ½” drive impact wrench and some accessory pieces completed this sale.  After comparing prices, the ½” and 3/8” drive sockets were purchased from Harbor Freight Tools.  They do make the job easier when there are a lot of nuts to remove plus the air nozzle was an invaluable aid for cleaning parts.  And the power steering assembly was to be one of those parts.