So the last few weeks have been unreasonably hard.
Our 4 wheeler’s drive shaft broke, and while we were driving on the beach too! We pushed it as close to the cliff face as possible and trekked the 5 miles back home. Kyle then went back at the next low tide and managed to get it to the truck, taking 3 hours for a trip he can normally make in 35 minutes. Then we had to order parts and waited 2 weeks for them to come in. In the meantime we drove the truck and parked it on the beach walking the last half mile home each time we needed to go to town. Luckily the tides have been below 30 ft for that time frame. Any tides over that and it would no longer be safe to park the truck on the beach.
Today we finally had all the parts and time, so we decided to work on the 4 wheeler. After much online research we managed to get the old parts off, and they were definitely ruined.
I couldn’t believe there were no step by step instructions online for doing this, so here’s how we managed it for our Yamaha Kodiak 450. First we took off the right rear tire, then placed the 4 wheeler in neutral and flipped it up onto it’s left side. We did leak a little gas from to vent hose doing this, but it made reaching the parts so much easier. Then we used a flat head screw driver and 2 lb hammer to tap the c clips out of place. Make sure to have a rag wrapped around the joint for this part! We managed to loose one c clip not doing that since they fly off.
Next use a hammer and punch to tap the yoke on one side until the other side comes loose. We used a socket drive as a punch since it was the right size. Remove the opposite side carefully so you don’t lose any of the small bearings inside. Then flip the joint and repeat the process to remove the other yoke. The u joint should pop off easily at that point. To put a new one on we reversed this process, but used a clamp to get the yokes in rather than hammer and punch. Once we understood the process it was really easy to complete.
The part that took us the longest during was actually trying to find the c clip we lost on the ground! Kyle finally realized that each u joint has 4 c clips so we took another one off the old parts and used it. Then we got to test drive the 4 wheeler and take it home! Not having the 4 wheeler the last few trips to town has really made us appreciate it that much more. Especially with Kyle carrying heavy loads up the big hill to our place like 40 lbs of dog food!
In other news around the homestead, we purchased a large propane stove top for cooking and canning. The fireweed is starting to develop buds and I am really looking forward to making jelly with the flowers. There are lots of berries that will be coming in soon as well.
I also added a few more plants to the greenhouse, and was able to gather some raspberry starts from a neighbor. Our meat chickens are temporarily housed to one side of the greenhouse. They should only be there for another day or two while we finish the chicken coop.
And last but definitely not least, Kyle got the solar up and running! We can run all of our electronics off solar now, and will just be using the generator for power tools and as a back up. Our 400 watt off grid system is just the right size for us (get yours here). We tested it and it charges really well on cloudy days too.