Hopefully, you've all thawed out successfully and are itching to roll up your sleeves and start working on your Corvettes--I know I certainly am!
To borrow the motto of the Boy Scouts of America, "be prepared," which translates to having some essential items ready for use before you begin working on your Vette. These are what I consider to be essentials: disposable nitrile gloves to keep your meat-hooks clean; WD-40 for penetrating rusted fasteners, cleaning paint off your hands, and a plethora of other uses; aerosol carb and choke cleaner for dissolving and removing grease and engine muck; a razor-blade scraper and a utility knife; a workbench; and a stool or bench on which to sit. A good torque wrench is also mandatory equipment if you're doing any projects that require specific torque for the bolts, such as heads and intake manifolds.
If you'll be doing any projects where elevating your Corvette is involved, you'll need a good hydraulic trolley jack, wheel chocks, a pair of sturdy jackstands, and a creeper or mat for your back. You'll also need a basic arsenal of tools that has a good assortment of screwdrivers, nut drivers, wrenches, sockets, and ratchets. The tools will be ASA standard if you're working on C1, C2, or C3 Corvettes and metric standard for C4s, C5s, and C6s.
Service, shop, and/or assembly manuals are always good to have on hand for your particular year/model Corvette(s); they contain pertinent data such as fluid capacities, electrical measurements, torque specs, and so forth. The best ones are the actual factory service manuals produced by GM and used by Chevrolet service technicians; however, Chilton, Motorbooks, and other publishers also publish excellent service manuals as well.
You'll do your best work and be most efficient if you wear comfortable clothing; perhaps have the radio, CD, player or iPod on to give you some pleasant tunes; and have bottled water or other soft drinks available to quench your thirst.
Lastly, always work safely, because it's no fun to get cut, bruised, burned, or sustain any other injuries while working on your Corvette. Make sure you have plenty of time to complete any project you start, since rushing things invariably leads to carelessness and accidents; the old adage "haste makes waste" is a true one. I know it's been said before, but safety is no accident--literally!
Well, that should keep you out of trouble for a while. Hope you have fun doing these projects--see you next year, same time, same issue, with a bunch of new Corvette weekend projects.
|Wrench Difficulty Index|
|Anyone's Project: no tools required||1 Wrench|
|Beginner: basic tools||2 Wrenches|
|Experienced: special tools||3 Wrenches|
|Accomplished: special tools and outside help||4 Wrenches|
|Professionals Only: send this work out||5 Wrenches|