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Making parts from cast-off aluminum.

June 17, 2009

Well, I am not expert in fab work. Really just a third-rate hack. But once in a while I decide to try and do certain things myself from scratch. Mostly because I am broke, but sometimes just to see if I can.

When I first got the truck running, I replaced the fuel pump with an electric one. I like how easy it is to get the carb filled, and also the stock one was a bit pricier than I wanted to pay. And lastly, my old stock one had a blown diaphragm so it became a gasoline squirt gun. Not a good idea when the weep hole is over the exhaust pipe.

The other day I dug out some old aluminum I-beam that has been laying in the backyard of the house. It has been there for years and no one was using it. So I figured it would be great for a couple of homebrewed projects. Here is my fuel pump block off plate I made with some of it.

Here is what I started with. My stock pump keeping the oil from escaping the motor, and the aluminum I am working with.

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This plate is 1/4″ thick. I think this should be more than enough to work.

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Now that I have the plate ready and measured, I need to make a template. The easiest way is to get a gasket and use it to cut to size. Well the closest one I had is on that pump. So off it went.

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So I took the gasket and scribed a basic shape for me to start with. I decided to go a bit wider since my tools are very rudimentary.

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Here is my weapon of choice. A 4″ angle grinder. OK, it is my only weapon that would work. Unfortunately my cut off wheel died in the making of this post/part.

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So I had to make the cuts quick which meant sloppy…

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So with the cut off wheel dead, I resorted to regular grinding wheels and flap disk. This was definitely slower going. But after an hour of shaping and trimming with a lot of checking to make sure I didn’t botch the job, I ended up with this.

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All that’s left is to get some stainless hardware to hold the plate on since the original bolts were made for a thicker flange than this plate. And also I think it will look pretty snazzy.

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