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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I decided to start a thread to document my progress on my Rodeo. I'm sure it will be pretty boring since I am not much of a mechanic so I'm mostly doing it so I can remember all that have done to it ... My brain doesn't work so good anymore, hell I have a hard time remember what I did yesterday, so this will help me recall what I've done and hopefully some of ya will enjoy the read.

A little about me first ... My name is Shane and live in Northern Utah. Like I wrote above, I am not much of a mechanic, never really enjoyed it until now, but I am very mechanical. I can usually look at something and tell ya exactly how it works and how to fix it, unless it's a vehicle ... lol.

One of my hobbies is restoring old wood working and metal working machines and I am kinda well-know in that community. I have restored a couple hundred machines over the last dozen or so years. I love the turn of the century machines cause they were built to last and built with pride. I have a shop full of old machines that I restored and use daily with my oldest being a tenoning machine built in the 1860s.

I love taking old machines that have been used and abuse like this one and ...

making them beautiful and fully functional again.
(a capture of one of my machines in Fine Woodworking Magazine)


You can see more of my restorations on my website at http://www.shanewhitlock.com

Okay, enough about me, lets get to the Rodeo. I picked this up a couple months ago after my F150 died. It was for sale down the road from me and the owner was asking $2400 for it. I offered $1200 and he accepted. It's a 92 Rodeo LS, auto trans with the 3.1 and in very nice condition considering it has 215,000 miles on it. It has spent all of it's 22 years here in Utah so due to the damn snow and salt on the winter roads it has quite a bit of frame rust ... I'm jealous of you guys that live in the drier climates with the rust free vehicles. It's my daily driver for my 60 mile commute to work and back every day.

Here's how she looks now. Completely stock .... no mods, yet ;)


So my plans for her are to add a lift ... 1½" body and a 2 or 3 inch suspension lift. 32, maybe 33" tires, roof rack, custom built front and rear bumpers, etc.

What I have done so far ... The first thing I did was change the fluids; engine oil and filter, transfer case, front and rear differentials, and topped off the transmission. Put in new spark plugs, wires, cap and rotor. Replaced the fuel filter.

I picked me up a Chilton to help me out and was terribly disappointed in the lack of info it it. I have one for my 75 Jimmy and my 92 Ford Ranger and they are pretty helpful but this one for the Isuzu pretty much sucks. So I found me a set of Isuzu shop manuals on Ebay and they have been a big help. I love the electrical manual and it has helped me troubleshoot some of the electrical problems that I have had.

Shortly after I got the Rodeo I noticed a lot of oil on my rear end so I determined it was a pinion seal so after watching a lot of YouTube videos on it I successfully changed the seal. Then I noticed my bottle for the wiper fluid was leaking. I thought it was a seal but it ended up being the pump ... That's when I discovered the local Pick A Part :). I picked up a couple of them plus several other misc. things that I needed ... Love the Pick A Part!

Next I replaced my combo switch cause my high beams stopped working. I put together a tutorial for that and posted it in the Electrical section here ...
Replacing/Repairing Blinker/Hi-Low Dimmer Combo Switch


Then I noticed fuel leaking from my fuel pressure regulator so I rebuilt that and my injectors and posted a tutorial for that in the Drivetrain Problems section here ... Throttle Body Injectors / Pressure Regulator Rebuild Thread


The stock radio and CD player didn't work so I took those out and put in a new Pioneer stereo along with some nice Pioneer speakers that I stole out of my Jimmy. Then I installed a CB radio for it. I put in an external speaker jack for the CB so I can plug it in to the aux port on the stereo and the sound will come out of the stereo system.


The weather here has been kinda crappy so I haven't got as much down as I wanted.


This weekend I have been making some pucks for a body lift which I will hopefully get installed tomorrow.

More pics to come!

Thanks for reading!
 

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Hi Shane, welcome to the Planet! I am a total vintage nut, so really enjoyed looking through some of your restorations - you do amazing work! I'm sure with your skill and care your Rodeo is going to be equally impressive, looking forward to following your progress. :thumbup:

Shaggy
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Shaggy, I appreciate it. I have read through your build threads and enjoyed them. I think it's great that you have your daughter out there playing in the mud with ya. Very cool!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I installed a 1½" body lift on my truck today. I am on a tight budget and couldn't afford the hundred bucks that Independent4x.com wanted so I made my own blocks from solid fiber reinforced UHMW PE. Good strong stuff that should last forever.

Pic turning the 3" diameter blocks on my little lathe.


I didn't take any pics of the install cause I was to dirty and greasy and didn't want to get my camera dirty but it was pretty simple to do, even with my lack of mechanical skills.
I think the truck looks great!




A little flexing ... lol


So you can see from the pics that I still need to raise the bumpers. Ran out of time today but I have tomorrow off, hopefully I can at least get the front one raised.

Next I want to do a suspension lift ... I think 2" maybe 3" would work and I still think it will look at okay with the smaller 31" tires. They still have a lot of life left and I can afford to be throwing money out on some new ones right now.

So my question is, is there a set of leaf springs that I can rob off of another vehicle at the local Pick A Part that will fit the rodeo and give me the lift I want? I guess I can go with a shackle lift for right now but I have never really like the looks of long shackles.
 

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ShaneWhitlock said:
I installed a 1½" body lift on my truck today. I am on a tight budget and couldn't afford the hundred bucks that Independent4x.com wanted so I made my own blocks from solid fiber reinforced HDPE. Good strong stuff that should last forever.

Pic turning the 3" diameter blocks on my little lathe.
Awesome restorations man I love it. I can only imagine how this will pan out for your Rodeo, and I think we're already watching it happen :D Good choice on the HDPE that is some tough stuff. I've got a friend that makes skid plates for racing quads out of that stuff and it takes a beating better than the metal versions, not to mention still looks good at the end of the race.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Today I got the front bumper pulled off the Rodeo ...
(I really gotta do something about all the old oil on the hood, and the leak underneath)

Then I cut some brackets and welded them to the frame.

Drilled some new mounting holes and got it all back together.
Everything is now straight and tighter than it was before.

Ran out of time so the back bumper will have to wait til this weekend.

I did have time to put my new sticker on though ... ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ (mo-lone lah-veh) Come and Get Them! :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
shaggydoink said:
I absolutely love this picture!!

Shaggy
Thanks Shaggy ... While I don't condone breaking the law I thought the guy up on the hill shooting his gun and the shot up sign kinda fit the ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ theme.

That canyon is literally two minutes from my house and I have been going up there since I was in Jr. High school, more than 35 years ago; camping, riding bikes and 4 wheelers, sitting around a campfire drinking beer, playing in the stream, and just having a good time, and it just pisses me off when a$$holes put up a No Trespassing sign like this one. It's against the law to have a good time anymore.
 

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Kinda off-topic, but your "no trespassing" pic reminded my of my cousin's car from back in the day. It was some kind of British thing, Bug-Eye Sprite maybe. Anyway, it was low enough, (if you lowered the windshield, like a jeep) that he could drive it under those gates they put up on B.L.M. land. Haha, he took that thing all kinds of crazy places. Strangely enough, he's a cop now, has been for many years.

That's a good looking Rodeo, mine is newer, but looks 100 years older :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
That's funny!
BLM puts up some heavy duty gates around here too, but just the gates, hardly ever a fence connected to them so ppl just drive around the gates After a while BLM will put a couple boulders on the sides and then ppl would go wider and drive around the boulders ... lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
This morning my wife and I hit the local Pick A Part to see if we could find any goodies for the Rodeo or her little Ford Ranger. I spotted a couple pairs of Aisin hubs, one set on a 90 Trooper and another on a 92 Rodeo, and proceeded to tear them off. The set on the Trooper pulled right off and are in pretty nice shape. The ones on the Rodeo were a major pain in the butt .... literally.
I was moving my tools and a couple of floor matts that I was knelling on to keep my knees out of the snow, when I slipped on some ice and down I went. The tools and hubs went a flying and scattered all over the place. I managed to smack the back of my head on a Rodeo on my way down and landed flat on my *** on the hard ice ... ouch!
My wife helped me up and I pulled myself together, we gathered up the tools and somehow managed to find everything that was buried in the snow and started in on the Rodeo. I got the passenger side hub off with out to much trouble but the 8mm Allen head bolts on the drivers side were completely stripped out.
We headed out and I paid the guy at the counter a total of 18 bucks for the hubs and ran home to get more tools to get the stuck bolts out. I returned to the yard, this time with my son, and hit the ice and down I went again. This time my feet really flew out and I landed hard on my back and head on the concrete walkway .... I'm getting to old for this crap.
Anyways, I managed to get 3 of the 6 bolts out and finally gave up on the remaining 3. I'm gonna have to return at a later date with a cordless drill and drill the heads off.
Tonight I completely tore apart the complete set and cleaned and lube all the parts. Hoping to get them installed tomorrow (if I my body's not hurting to much).
 

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:D wow thats so cool you made your body lift blocks 8) recon
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
ZuminaZX said:
hey shane, bust me out a set of those 1.25" blocks. I'd love to support a local business :D
I would love to and would do it for free but I used up the last of the large UHMW PE that I had. Get me some material and I can do it for ya.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Didn't get around to raising the rear bumper this weekend but I did manage to get the auto hubs removed and install the new Aisin hubs.
I put together a tutorial for it in the Drivetrain Mods forum HERE
Very easy to do :D


Then I had to go and try them out

 

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$18 for two sets of Aisin hubs (we'll, I guess technically 1-3/4 sets) is an amazing deal! I've run into a couple sets in yards near me where I ended up doing what you did and just walking away due to frozen bolts. They look fantastic, keep up the great work!!

Shaggy
 

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Yeah, and I thought I had scored by picking up my ONE set for 20.00 Dennis
 

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Just found this post. You are one talented man. It looks like it will carry over into your Isuzu interest. Really liked your pics also. Just curious. What camera do you use, and do you have a favorite lens you like to use?
 
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