Spare Tire and More

There were of course no keys that came with the Ambassador when I bought it almost 2 years ago. I have since gotten all the keys working by buying new lock cylinders or have the local locksmith make a key when I brought him the lock.

I had one key still missing to the storage compartment toward the back on the curb side. It is installed such a way as you cannot remove it easily. Colin had suspected that the key to his access door on his ’59 Ambassador would work. I had since been bugging him for over a year to get a copy to try. At the CBR he brought a copy of his key, and I found anyone with a similar hatch and borrowed their keys to make copies. I tried from a ’58 – ’61. Spent about $11 on keys.

When I returned home to California, one of the first things I tried was the hatch keys. Not one of them worked! I was bummed.

After polishing the trailer since it was all hooked up, I decided to tow it to the locksmith and see if he could make a key from a 50 year old lock. He had a small scope much like the doctor uses to check your ears. He looked in the lock for a couple of minutes and came back with a key, after a couple of tries, it worked! He fine tuned the key and for $21 and fifteen minutes, I had a perfect key…. finally.

Todays project was another long awaited one. I have been carrying the spare tire in the bed of the truck. There is a spare tire carrier on the trailer. Its pretty much rusted to the rear bumper, they are one now. A lot of people are scared to put a tire on the rear and if they don’t know their floor and frame are solid they are probably should be. Since I repaired my rear floor and the rear frame, I decided to go ahead and use it. I have seen a lot of photos and videos of these old trailers carrying even two spare tires on the rear bumper on those around the World caravans, so I’m not too worried.

I was missing the parts to secure the rim to the mount. I ended up re-purposing a floor flange used in electrical plumbing parts. Here are some photos.

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Here is a close up of how its secured to the carrier. Since the wheel is aluminum I cut a piece of cork to help keep the metal from marring the wheel.

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Some more close ups of the mount. The bottom bracket is actually supporting the tire weight. The nut is just keeping it from coming of the mount.

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This last shot shows the rear view. There are two holes in the mount. I’m going to run a cable lock through them and the wheel to keep it secure.

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