Better Late Than Never…

I wrapped up the block of the month quilt in May and am finally blogging about it.¬† But at least I am better than Drew at posting sort-of timely ūüôā

The first month was all about Brilliant Star blocks.  I actually learned some pointers about lining up corners and was impressed that every block came out perfect!  Usually I am off a little bit..  The directions were to cut many strips of 3 shades of blue, cut the 3-piece strip diagonally, and then sew back together at an offset to create the blocks.

All lined up they look pretty good!


A Brilliant Star Corner


I was excited to lay out all of the pieces and start sewing them together.  I have to say, that piecing a 5-piece corner and getting everything to line up was challenging.


All laid out and ready to be sewn together

After some seam ripping to get everything aligned to the point that I was happy with the finished product, with the 5-points (mostly) lined up.   I also sewed on the ribbon border that I made back in the first month. I think that it will fit in with our Texas house once I finally have it all finished!

My plan is to take long arm quilting lessons so that I can finish the quilt myself Рthe queen size is a bit too much to tackle on my sewing machine.  I have some family heirloom quilts that need finishing Рso this will be my first trial.


The quilt top is complete! 



Go Kart!

Its been a while, but I felt the¬†need to share the glory of the first drive of Delores… or at least like 60% of her… maybe 50%… who cares, she drives!

Tested the clutch, transmission, and a little bit of brakes in the garage with it on the rack and then backed it out (I was a bit nervous I would somehow manage to plow through the front of the garage) without any issues although the harnesses certainly keep you in place.

It has a heck of a long nose in front of you and the driving position feels a bit far back, but the power steering and transmission worked great.

I was being very careful to not accelerate, but even with the tiny amount of throttle I gave it, it is amazing how light this thing is… go-kart is an appropriate description, if you had a go-kart with about 400hp.

Brakes were a little spongy, but I am going to bed them and see how much that helps since I really don’t want to have to bleed them again, but might have to.

And just to top it all off, it wouldn’t have been a true test of Gallagher building ability if I didn’t need to be pushed home!¬† The downside of not having a fuel gauge yet was that as I pulled up after about 5 laps around the block it died on me from lack of gas (important)

All in all a success, found a small fuel leak afterwards, but tightened that up and no problems!


Baby Quilts of 2016

It seems like I didn’t sew so many baby quilts this year – only 4!¬† But time was limited amongst my other projects and other hobbies I picked up this year: branching out into flower arranging, starting a gigantic cross-stitch that I won’t finish¬†until I’m 65, ¬†and traditional archery (I know, that one came out of¬†left field¬†– but we spend a lot of time hanging out on ranches after working all day so it is something fun to do to relax).

In addition to the flying geese paper-pieced quilt that I was oh-so-proud of, I made some themed quilts (more for their mamas than the babies really).

First was a blue nautical themed quilt for a baby boy.  His sister got a pink nautical themed quilt in 2013.   I used a free pattern on Craftsy for a full sized quilt, but I revised the dimensions so that it would fit a crib size.



Second was one of my own designs for a couple who thinks a lot about Colorado and misses it while in Houston.   It is all squares and triangles, but makes a picture, like the Pirate Ship quilt I made a few years ago.  This quilt has mountains, sky, and a sun.  As it was for a little girl, I especially liked the coral bias tape and the pink backing.


Lastly was one that was special to me.  My grandmother is a great sewer, although she never quilted, she makes clothes and many other things for her children and for us when we were little.  She even taught me how to cross stitch when I was little since we are both lefties.  Earlier this year my Aunt and Uncle helped her clean out all of the fabric in her basement in Indiana and all of the cotton was put in two overflowing boxes and dropped off in Texas.

When my mom and grandmother visited in April, we sorted all of the cotton by color, threw away a bunch that wasn’t very good anymore, and heard stories of my mom and grandmother say what the fabric was from – jumpers for toddlers in the 60’s, grandpa’s pajamas, dresses.¬† That was the neat part.

Well I took the sorted fabric, which has all kinds of fashion statements from the last 7 decades, and cut enough squares to give one quilt to each cousin when they have a baby – so be ready!¬† (Luckily I have a relatively small family).¬† First is for Audie & Josh’s baby Luke.¬† He is almost one so I am a bit behind.

This quilt is simple squares sewn into cross shapes, but I think that the memories of all of us jumping around the sewing room watching my grandfather’s trains make a loop around the washing machine and the clothes she made¬†our Cabbage Patch dolls will be better than a fancy quilt ūüôā




Listen to her purr

November 6, 2016

The next steps after the exhaust were to get all the wiring connected (that I could at this stage) that was required to run the engine, namely the starter, distributor, alternator, ignition and all the ground points.  Also finally got the right sized serpentine belt, which looks good.20161027_195335

The wiring went fairly well, with just a bit of research being needed.  Having siblings and a father who are much more electrically inclined certainly helped in the process.  Spark plug wires have never looked so good.20161029_180107

Next step was the cooling system.¬† Unfortunately since I have ordered this in 2 stages, stage 2 contains the grill which is what supports the radiator.¬†¬†Since I didn’t want to wait, I rigged up a solution that will do until I get the grill at the end of the year.

Still a bit of difficulty in routing the water pump bypass line and where I am going to tie into the manifold, but it will do for now.

Got the engine cranking, primed, and filled with oil and water.¬† We were about to try to start it up, but decided to get a oil pressure gauge to make sure we were still seeing enough oil pressure which delayed us by a week.¬† Once I had the pressure gauge rigged up dad came over and we gave it a shot.¬† First couple tries we were having issues with fuel not being pulled in since the lines were all empty.¬† Priming the lines sorted that problem but highlighted another… fuel leak!¬† After avoiding blowing ourselves up and fixing the leaking offender we had the beast up and running!¬† Ill see if I can upload a video on facebook or somewhere else, but she sounds good and runs pretty smooth.¬† I think I need to adjust the timing a bit, but everything seemed to be running well.






Exhaust Install

October 2016

Its been a while since the last update, been working on getting the exhaust in and finally got it sorted after some corrections from FFR.  wp_20161014_21_28_19_pro

I must say that working on the exhaust on the lift has made it much more convenient for fitting everything in, especially since FFR has designed a pretty impressive system that sandwiches the exhaust completely in between the top and bottom tubes of the lattice frame.


Initially I had an issue with the first pipes fitting since I apparently got an old run of pipe which had the flange welded on the wrong end.  I spoke with FFR and they promptly sent me out a new set of pipes which all fit pretty well.  You can see the mirror polished stainless steel which looks pretty awesome.  I am sure anyone looking at the underside of the car will appreciate it.  6 mounts and some cutting and grinding to make sure they were flush with the frame top and I had the exhaust in.  I think I still have a bit of adjusting to do since they arent as far back as I would like, but we will see how they fit on the body.

I have the pipes centered up in the rear instead of split because thats the only way I can clear the IRS mounts.  However, I think they look pretty good close together like that.  I have about 3/4 of an inch between the mufflers and the floor panel, so hopefully it wont get too hot, but the insulation should help with that.

Next up, finish some of the wiring and start this bad boy up!

Rear Brake Lines and Partial Brakes

August 24-25, 2016

Rear brake lines went slightly easier than the front due mainly to experience.  We had one issue trying to figure out how to get through the foot well fire wall panel, but Collin had a good idea how to avoid an impossible bend by routing it a different direction with equivalent results

The loops at the ends are to take up some extra tubing and to orient the end connection with the square tubing face.  Unfortunately we routed the rear brake connections to the locations for brakes on a solid axle, the IRS brakes will be different, but I think the flexible tubing will give me enough play to get by.

Mounted the rotors on the back to get rid of some boxes, hopefully should have the new brake brackets from FFR this week and I can finish them off.