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  #961  
Old 07-09-2018, 01:56 PM
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I was blown away at the results of cutting the oxidation off this old paint. It's hard to explain the magnitude of the change, so here are some videos that really show the difference.

Hood 50/50


Door 50/50


Trunk 50/50


In addition to the videos, here are some photos. The tops of the fenders were pretty bad - no more!



Trunk chalk be gone!



Quarter panel vs. door.



The edges of my pad got a little chewed up as I occasionally hit the nubs/studs that retain the side molding clips. I occasionally cleaned off the pad to remove spent compound.

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  #962  
Old 07-09-2018, 01:57 PM
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I was really happy when I finished the last sections and pulled the car out to inspect in the sunlight.







I was exhausted after compounding the whole car. I don't know how many hours I put into it exactly. It took a lot out of me to remove all the trim, door handles, tail lights, bumper, side markers, etc plus tape it off and the actual process of cutting the paint, which included a lot of squatting into weird positions. My body was hurting!

The above closeup is representative of how the car turned out. You can see there are light swirl marks left by compounding which is completely normal. These should be removed by polishing, which is normally the last step before wax.
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  #963  
Old 07-09-2018, 01:58 PM
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At this point I ran out of both time and energy to polish the car. I had one afternoon left before a show and I decided it was "good enough" for now. Taking a shortcut, I moved on to wax. I used the DA with a black finishing pad as a wax spreader and applied Meguiars Ultimate Liquid Wax. I applied it to a few panels at a time, then wiped off with microfiber after it had been on for at least 5 minutes (per the directions).



Of course I had to look at it in the sun again. The wax gave it a little more reflection/shine/depth.











Finally it was time to reassemble.





And... drum roll please... tada!







Here's a video... ready to go again!


It was time for the "show". I got up bright and early Sunday morning and headed out at 6am for Supercar Sunday in Woodland Hills.











I had a great time at the show. It was hot out though - high 90s. The car drove well too and from the show, about 40min each way down the freeway. Coolant temps down the highway got up to as high as 210F, but it didn't have any trouble staying at a normal 195F while cruising and idling around town. I think I may want to install some flaps into my fan shroud to let air through at speed. Who knows how it will do when the AC gets setup.

My fuel pump is really starting to whine now. I need to figure out what's wrong with it soon before it leaves me stranded. That's all for now!
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  #964  
Old 07-09-2018, 04:04 PM
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Turned out pretty damn good for what you started with. Its amazing how much time it takes to do a project like this, most people dont realize it and are shocked when they get a quote for a pro to do it.

Again, great work as always. Hopefully youll get some time to research a good sealant and can go back at some point.

dan
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  #965  
Old 07-10-2018, 11:47 AM
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I’m really digging the results of your elbow grease.
Mainly because waxing and all that paint care is an area that I simply, do not, do anymore.
Street toys need to look presentable.
My junk not so much.
Now, I generally wash the rigs about 4 times a year, depending on the need:
Spring, twice in the summer, mid-September.

I haven’t waxed anything I’ll bet in 4-Decades

Well Done
E
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  #966  
Old 07-10-2018, 01:09 PM
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Originally Posted by juicedz4 View Post
Turned out pretty damn good for what you started with.
Thank you so much dan! I see some of the stuff you do and it's humbling. My car will never be THAT sanitary but it's a notch or two better than it was.

Quote:
Originally Posted by juicedz4 View Post
Its amazing how much time it takes to do a project like this, most people dont realize it and are shocked when they get a quote for a pro to do it.
YES! I did not expect this at all. I thought maybe I would spend a weekend on this, but no way - it takes many hours! Just running the DA once over the whole car and wiping off could take half a day. Add time for disassembly and/or taping, multiple steps, wash, clay, etc and I can see why a deep detail demands good money. I didn't get quotes, but I looked up general pricing and now I know why it costs as much as it does.

Quote:
Originally Posted by entropy View Post
I’m really digging the results of your elbow grease.
Mainly because waxing and all that paint care is an area that I simply, do not, do anymore.
Street toys need to look presentable.
My junk not so much.
Now, I generally wash the rigs about 4 times a year, depending on the need:
Spring, twice in the summer, mid-September.

I haven’t waxed anything I’ll bet in 4-Decades

Well Done
E
Thank you E! I was in the same boat with you until I started this project. The Nova got washed a few times a year MAYBE, never waxed, never polished or buffed. I kinda liked it that way because I never worried about messing up the finish. Hopefully this shiny look doesn't make me second guess how I drive and enjoy the car. I know I'm already more careful just walking around the car in the garage than I was before.
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Last edited by TheBandit; 07-10-2018 at 01:17 PM.
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  #967  
Old 07-12-2018, 08:49 AM
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I think the polished aged paint has so much more character than a freshly restored car. If the paint was perfect you would drive it less in fear of getting to dirty, scratched or chipped.

It's pretty hard to buy history and patina. Only time can produce it.
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  #968  
Old 07-12-2018, 11:13 AM
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That's a great way to think about it and I agree, a little patina gives freedom from worry!
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  #969  
Old 07-17-2018, 01:08 PM
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Got a wild hair on Friday, took the day off and drove my family down the Pacific Coast Highway for a beach day north of Malibu. The weather was fantastic and we had a blast!













I had an oh-crap moment running errands before we headed out. I stopped a few miles from the house and when I went to turn the key, the starter didn't crank. The ECM must have gotten a key-on voltage because the gauges fired up and the fuel pump ran, but the starter itself did not crank. I didn't have a DMM/voltmeter or anything on me so I listened for sound at the starter solenoid and heard nothing. I followed the wiring from the starter solenoid back and realized there are quite a few connections and possible failure points: one under the hood, the neutral safety switch on my Hurst shifter (which could need adjustment), a few crimp connections leftover from years ago, the neutral safety switch in the column (it was originally a column shift car), and the ignition switch. I pushed each connection together (none were obviously disconnected), moved the shifter slightly, moved the column shifter slightly, retried and it started right up. I should have been smarter and tried one thing at a time so I would know which connection or switch was the culprit, but I was just happy to get it started. I will have to go over the wiring later and check all the switches and adjustments.

In other news, the car got a layer of dust from driving it so I'm going to have to take it all apart and detail it again
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  #970  
Old 07-18-2018, 04:02 PM
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Talking

So. . .

I just washed my POS Ranger

You are a baaaaaad, baaaaad influence

BTW it looks the same, like a Ranger, without a layer of dust.

E
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  #971  
Old 08-08-2018, 05:02 PM
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E I thought I replied right after you posted but apparently it was lost in the ether. I'm sorry for any bad influence I may have on you, especially any time wasted cleaning instead of enjoying your truck - it's a strange sickness I have until recently been spared of. I'll let you know if I figure out the proper treatment.

I am really enjoying just driving the car this year. As much as I'm itching to upgrade brakes and get back to autocross, it's nice to be able to just jump in and go whenever I want. As I drive I discover things I want to update or repair to make it more driveable.

A while back I installed a pair of reproduction side mirrors from National Parts Depot. My car did not originally come with a passenger side mirror and I was hoping to add some visibility, but the small size barely gave me peep-hole visibility to a small corner of the road. I added blind spot mirrors but even so the passenger side mirror was effectively useless. Not only that but the poor build quality resulted in a "floppy" mirror that wouldn't stay in place. UGH!



I did a fair amount of research into mirrors. I explored using factory "sport" style mirrors which came on '73-'74 Novas. Some people adapt sport mirrors from 2nd gen Camaros as well. The problem is these all have flat mirrors which means the visibility likely wouldn't be much better. Then I came across another option: Scott Drake CONVEX side mirrors (PN 65801-C & 65802-C).

Convex side mirrors are commonplace on modern cars, especially on the passenger side. They are the reason you see the text "OBJECTS IN MIRROR ARE CLOSER THAN THEY APPEAR" The mirror is curved to collect a wider field of view, at the expense of making objects look smaller / farther away.

Here is a video comparing the factory-syle flat mirrors (with convex blind spot mirrors added) to the Scott Drake convex mirrors:



Here is the passenger side mirror installed. Notice the "Objects in mirror" text.



I took photos before and after from the driver's seat with the car in the garage. Look how much more can be seen out of the convex mirrors. On the passenger side all I could see before was a sliver next to the garage door when I was backing out. Now I can see the car next to me, the garage door opening and my own car! Much better!



Here is a video driving down the road. It's very hard to capture how much better these are but the difference was night and day. The passenger side is SO MUCH BETTER!



I continue to enjoy driving the car every chance I get. The other week was particularly stressful at work so I took a little twilight cruise along some backroads. I found a cool dead-end road that was the perfect spot for a photo.





It is really neat to see reflection in the paint now! The photos are deceptive though.. the car is actually very dusty.



Three weeks after the wax job, it was finally time for a bath. It was really cool to see the water beading now that the car is waxed.





With the car cleaned up again, I got the kids and wife up early Sunday morning and headed to cars and coffee Ventura.





These cruises and car shows are a fun opportunity to show off my work, see cool cars, and meet new friends. Any excuse to get out in the car with my family is great; I love having my kids piled in the backseat and my wife next to me - it's heaven.

After the cruise we did a little shopping. I get nervous about leaving my car in a crowded parking lot where it's likely to get hit by carts or even another car, but I love that I can actually use the car as a car when I want to. The trunk has tons of space.



It's funny to me how small the car looks when it's next to modern cars and trucks.



My wife is starting to ask about the AC so I've decided started on that project soon. Rolling down the windows is alright, but we've had a few triple digit days and it would be really nice if the HVAC was working. My goal is to get the factory system working with the original POA valve (after adjusting for R-134a). I have no idea what I'm going to run into since I've never attempted to get the system working. It will be an interesting journey of discovery.

My car is an original factory AC car. The system was 100% intact when I first bought the car in 1998. I no longer have the original condenser, drier, and A6 compressor, but the factory "suitcase" with the evaporator and all the interior ductwork and controls are still in place. I plan to use all the factory controls and evaporator.

During the LS swap I mounted a large parallel flow Vintage Air condenser up front. The original condensers on these cars were tube and fin which is less effective or efficient. I also notched the AC suitcase for clearance while repairing a few cracks and holes with fiberglass. I replaced the high speed fan relay which appeared to have shorted. I notched my subframe to low mount a fixed displacement compressor from an '07 truck. On the interior, lubed all the cables and door pivots so the flaps operate properly to allow control of hot/cold air blended, defrost, floor, bi-level etc. The factory system uses a vacuum control valve to operate flaps in the kick panel and cowl to control fresh air vs. recirculate - the valve is one component I need take a look at and test because it's very stiff to operate. I have not yet connected it to a vacuum source.

The factory system uses a POA valve (pilot operated absolute) to regulate the evaporator pressure and therefore temperature. With a POA system, the compressor runs all the time and the POA valves regulates a bypass of refrigerant flow to keep it at the optimal pressure and prevent the evaporator from freezing up. Since the original system was calibrated for R12, the POA needs to be adjusted to get the right evaporator pressure demanded by R134a. I have not yet looked at my POA valve, but many have an adjustment screw that can be used to set the pressure. Some people buy a "POA eliminator" which replaces the pressure regulating function of the POA with a temperature-based control to cycle the compressor clutch. I would like to get the POA valve working if I can. Of course you know I will document every step when I get to that point.

Here's what I think will be involved:
(1) Clean, calibrate and install POA valve
(2) Mount drier
(3) Replace TXV
(4) Make ac lines and replace all seals
(5) Wire compressor and fans
(6) Recondition vacuum control valve
(7) Flush, oil and charge the system

I have ordered most of what I need for the above, although I will have a find a local place to crimp the AC beadlock ends. If all goes well the system will be up and running just in time for winter!
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  #972  
Old 08-12-2018, 11:33 AM
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E I thought I replied right after you posted but apparently it was lost in the ether. I'm sorry for any bad influence I may have on you, especially any time wasted cleaning instead of enjoying your truck - it's a strange sickness I have until recently been spared of. I'll let you know if I figure out the proper treatment.
Not to worry friend.
After yesterday's trip to the powerlines Lava fields it is as dusty and dirty as it ever was maybe more & a good time was had by all!


E
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  #973  
Old 08-20-2018, 04:07 PM
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It does not suck to drive the Nova every chance I can get.









Doing more night driving highlighted some wiring issues with the exterior lighting. The housing-based ground on one of the taillight sockets is very unreliable so it is frequently going out - I can get it to work again by moving the socket around, but it often just goes out again while I'm driving. I had a headlight shut off due to a corroded connector. The blinkers sometimes work, sometimes don't. Lack of reliable exterior lighting is a serous safety concern, so I am going to limit my night driving and start researching harness replacement.

I had a little problem driving home from the gym last night. I noticed at the first light I stopped at my coolant temperature was spiking. I'll admit I got a little panicked as the needle was rapidly climbing.



I pulled into the nearest parking lot and shut the car down. I am always fearful of opening the hood on a car that's overheating. Once a friend of mine popped the hood while his car was overheating and in that moment one of his hoses blew off and spouted hot coolant everywhere. Luckily he wasn't scalded.



My first thought was to check the fan fuse and sure enough it was blown.



When I originally wired the fan I decided to use a maxi fuse. I knew a smaller form factor like an ATM or ATC fuse would not survive the high startup currents of this fan, but even a maxi fuse has it's limits. I planned to use a 40a fuse, but had a 30a handy in a fuse assortment so that's what I used. It worked for the last two years, but finally gave up. In the original application for this Volvo fan the wiring incorporated a fuseable link - that would be an even better option. But for this round I waited for the car to cool down, drove to the nearest auto parts store, and popped in a new 40a fuse. The fan is working fine again. I'll be sure to carry a spare from here on.
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  #974  
Old 08-20-2018, 04:11 PM
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I have started researching and mocking up things for the air conditioning. I dug through some very old storage bins to find my original POA (pilot operated absolute) valve. I took this off and bagged it in a ziplock around 1999. Since then all the evaporator lines have been taped off. Here she is in all her glory.



This has got to be one of the most misunderstood devices known to cars of this era. Part of the problem with understanding this device is you also have to understand refrigeration to understand it's purpose. I'll attempt to explain it the way I understand - feel free to chime in if you have a better explanation.

The POA valve is located at the exit of the evaporator. It is a normally closed valve and it remains closed until the absolute pressure in the evaporator reaches the setpoint of the POA valve. It is possible for the evaporator pressure to go above this setpoint, but not below it. The absolute pressure is used rather than a gauge pressure so the function of the valve is not affected by altitude changes.

So why would you want the evaporator pressure to always stay above a setpoint? The answer is that the pressure dictates the boiling point temperature of the refrigerant. If the pressure goes lower, the boiling point will go lower. The POA valve is calibrated from the factory at 30psig or 308kpa absolute. At this pressure, the boiling point (aka "saturation temperature") of R12 refrigerant is - drum roll please - 0C/32F - the freezing point for water. So in short, the POA valve prevents the evaporator from going below 0C/32F and therefore prevents water from freezing on the evaporator.

Notice that the pressure setpoint of the POA valve is based on the boiling point of the refrigerant. These days R134a is the refrigerant of choice. At 30psig / 308kpa absolute, the boiling point (saturation temperature) of R134a is roughly 1.4C/34.6F. This is still safely above the freezing point of water, but increases the evaporator temperature by about 2.6deg F. Re-calibrating the POA valve can bring that back down and potentially improve AC performance. Looking at the properties of R134a, the boiling point (saturation temperature) will be 0C/32F at a pressure of 27.75psig / 292.63 kpa absolute. This should be the new setpoint for the POA valve.

To adjust the POA setpoint, there is a locknut and adjustment screw down inside the exit of the valve (pictured below).



Meanwhile I have been sorting out fittings and hose ends to plumb the system. One place where a standard fitting poses a problem is at the exit of the POA valve. This joint is a #12 o-ring, however the standard size now used for the suction line to the compressor is #10. I needed a 180 degree #12 to #10 "step down" fitting which was much harder to find than I thought it would be. First I ordered one from Nostalgic Auto Air part number G135. I was hoping I could flip this fitting down so the hose would exit underneath the POA valve, but unfortunately it interfered with the hood hinge spring. So here is what it looks like aiming in the factory orientation



I didn't particularly like the aim of that fitting or how the barrier hose would be routed along the top of the evaporator. I found another option from Original Air aka Classic Auto Air part number G13-407 which mimics the original "shepard's hook" fitting, but is sized with a #10 hose outlet.



I picked up a prepackaged assortment of #6, #8 and #10 beadlock fittings and hose from ebay. #10 is used for the low pressure vapor suction line from the evaporator to the compressor. #8 is used for the high pressure vapor line from the compressor to the condenser. #6 is used for the high pressure liquid line from the condenser to the drier and back to the TXV valve on the evaporator.

Yesterday I cut the #10 hose for the suction side. I can't think of a better way to route it than to just elephant-trunk it directly down to the compressor. It's ugly but I think I can live with it. It's like the big brother to my ugly PCV fresh air hose. I'll just have to carefully angle my photos now to make sure the "Chevrolet" on the valvecover doesn't get crossed out.



Sunday I took the kids to a local "end of summer" cruise.





Afterwards I got back to wrenching with the goal of testing the my POA valve. The first step was removing the shrader valve from the original service port.





Then I installed an adapter fitting to convert to old thread-style R12 fitting to an R134a style coupler fitting which has it's own shrader valve. I found this one at NAPA.



This allowed me to connect a set of R134a gauges so I could see if the POA valve would open and regulate at the set pressure.



By supplying pressure at the evaporator inlet (about 80psi from my air compressor) I was able to confirm the valve opened and maintained an evaporator pressure of just under 30psi. I was really happy to discover it still functioned despite being almost 50 years old and spending the last 20 years in storage!


'
Here is a video showing just how I tested the valve.


Some time this week I will try to adjust the valve down to a lower pressure suitable for R134a.
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  #975  
Old 08-21-2018, 04:01 PM
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Last night I loosely mounted the drier and started looking at liquid line routing. I was happy to see I should be able to route the line tucked inside the fender and out of sight by using 45 degree fittings on either side of the drier and a 90 degree fitting at the TXV.





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  #976  
Old 08-22-2018, 11:20 AM
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Man, I think Id have scrapped that POA just because of how it looks. I mean i think its sweet you were able to covert it and get it working again, but man it looks like a trombone. lol

That whole box just sticks so far out too.
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  #977  
Old 08-22-2018, 12:09 PM
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Trombone hahaha! Yeah man it is not the prettiest thing but I expect it to freeze me out of the car. These TXV/POA systems allegedly cool extremely well. I'm looking forward to finding out.
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  #978  
Old 08-23-2018, 11:31 AM
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Many years ago I picked up compressor fittings from Docs Blocks just before they went out of business. I got both straight and angle/tube adapters and ended up using a combination: straight on the suction side and right angle on the high pressure outlet. Unfortunately the right angle adapter pointed directly at the radiator hose.





The tubing on this outlet adapter is #8 which has a 1/2" outside diameter (number/dash sizes correspond to sixteenths i.e. #8 is 8/16" or 1/2"). I didn't have a 1/2" tubing bender, but I found a cheap hand bender at the local parts store to get the job done.



Now the outlet points in a favorable direction and I will be able to route the high pressure hose with a service port fitting toward the front of the car.



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  #979  
Old 08-23-2018, 07:02 PM
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Doing more night driving highlighted some wiring issues with the exterior lighting. The housing-based ground on one of the taillight sockets is very unreliable so it is frequently going out - I can get it to work again by moving the socket around, but it often just goes out again while I'm driving. I had a headlight shut off due to a corroded connector. The blinkers sometimes work, sometimes don't. Lack of reliable exterior lighting is a serous safety concern, so I am going to limit my night driving and start researching harness replacement.

I had a little problem driving home from the gym last night. I noticed at the first light I stopped at my coolant temperature was spiking. I'll admit I got a little panicked as the needle was rapidly climbing.

I pulled into the nearest parking lot and shut the car down. I am always fearful of opening the hood on a car that's overheating. Once a friend of mine popped the hood while his car was overheating and in that moment one of his hoses blew off and spouted hot coolant everywhere. Luckily he wasn't scalded.

My first thought was to check the fan fuse and sure enough it was blown.



When I originally wired the fan I decided to use a maxi fuse. I knew a smaller form factor like an ATM or ATC fuse would not survive the high startup currents of this fan, but even a maxi fuse has it's limits. I planned to use a 40a fuse, but had a 30a handy in a fuse assortment so that's what I used. It worked for the last two years, but finally gave up. In the original application for this Volvo fan the wiring incorporated a fuseable link - that would be an even better option. But for this round I waited for the car to cool down, drove to the nearest auto parts store, and popped in a new 40a fuse. The fan is working fine again. I'll be sure to carry a spare from here on.
On the suburban I found some replacement tail light sockets with external grounds, that solved our issue. Something like this.

And good to know on the fan fuse. I don't think the Derale fan we ended up using is near as stout as the Volvo fan motor but I know we don't have a spare fuse in the truck.
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  #980  
Old 08-24-2018, 05:28 PM
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Great idea with the sockets, although I am planning to go to full-panel LED setup and I will do a dedicated ground for that.

The fan fuse was a lot of luck on my side to be honest. Luckily I caught the gauge spiking before it got too hot. And I wasn't very far from home or an auto store. I should have had a few spare fuses with me and I should have remembered to swap out the 30a for a 40a like I originally planned. Live and learn!
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Ongoing 70 Nova build: http://www.offroadfabnet.com/forums/...ead.php?t=8160
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