September 23 - 27, 2014
This past week has been very different for us living in a motel room for 4 nights. One of the good things for me anyway was that the motel has a small exercise room with a tread mill and a weight machine. At least I wouldn’t get complete cabin fever. There was also a golf course very close by, just 6 miles, that we could play and get some outdoor air.
|The golf course was very close to a RR track.|
On Tuesday the 23rd I got our truck in for it's 5k oil change. I also had a rotational squeak we have had for a few months since we left Texas that I wanted Ford to have a look at. It turned our that I had a belt and a belt tensioner I needed to have replaced for a whopping $550. Good thing we have an extended warranty that picked up the belt tensioner. That saved us about $300 on the repair.
Our motel is just a short walk to many restaurants that we took advantage of. Still, for us, eating out like this is very rare. We average eating out at 2 times per month and we ate out 4 times this week alone! We also did a fair amount of shopping to update our clothes a bit. Since the summer season is over up here Walmart has the warm weather clothes on clearance so we took advantage of that. All in all it was a very expensive week for us.
|One of the many restaurants near our motel.|
We had a nice lunch with them at their site at an RV repair facility in Elkhart. They had attended the RV-Dreams rally last week and were still there getting some work done. We had been planning to catch up with them for some time, but we keep missing each other as we cross the country. It was good time and we hope to see each other again down the road as we all say a lot.
|Allan, Patty, and Donna.|
|Patty with the "famous" Ferg gnome!|
Patty’s computer has been acting up for some time now. I did what I could do with it and was left with a virus that I couldn’t get rid of. This virus, according to my research on the internet cannot be removed with any of the virus softwares out there. I found very complex routines to eradicate it but I am not that computer sophisticated to attempt any of them. So, I need help!
On our way to play golf one morning we passed a sign for a computer repair place that said “we remove viruses”. That seemed to be just what we needed. On our way back from golf we stopped in to the repair place and they said they could take care of the virus overnight for $95.
We got the computer back the next day, Thursday, and found that Google Chrome would not work but the virus was in fact gone, good thing. Weird that Chrome didn’t work though. I tried MS IE and it worked fine. I then loaded a new version of Chrome on to the computer and it didn’t work either. I couldn’t even get to the settings screen, very strange. OK, I need help again!
We took the computer back to the repair place on Friday and were told they would again have it done for us overnight.
This was fine but we leave the area on Saturday morning. We didn’t check when they opened on Saturday either.
Our RV repair and maintenance work was completed Friday afternoon late so we stayed in their lot overnight.
|Our RV set up for the night in the lot at the repair facility.|
It was fine as they had us hooked up to 50A and there was water close enough for me to put some water in the fresh water tank. Also, there was a dump station on the way out. Perfect!
|This isn't our RV parts but they are the exact same. |
This is some of the stuff that was removed from our RV.
|This is also not our unit but it is the same as ours. |
This is the first stage of the repair, removing the front fiberglass cap.
We had the rig weighed for peace of mind. There are a lot of weights we need to be aware of and not exceed. These weights are as follows:
GCVWR: Gross Combined Vehicle Weight Rating. This is the weight of the entire rig (Truck and RV). This weight is specified by the truck manufacturer, Ford in our case. The GCVW for our truck is 29,000 lbs. We are at 26,100 lbs. So we are good there.
GVWR of the Trailer: This is specified by the trailer manufacturer and in our case is Prime Time Manufacturing. The RV GVWR is 15,441 lbs. Our actual weight is 16,000 lbs. This means we are overweight by 559 lbs. on the RV. However, we now have heavier wheels and tires. The extra tire and wheel weight doesn’t count against us on the RV as this weight is carried by the wheels and tires themselves. It does, however count toward the other weights. We also had about 200-250 lbs. of waste water in our tanks at the time we were weighed. It still counts against us, but the repair we just had done added about 300 lbs. to the RV. In the end we are just a tiny bit overweight on the RV.
Tire Weight Capacity: We can carry up to 4,800 lbs. on our tires each. Our heaviest loaded tire was 3,500 lbs. We are good there.
RV Axle Weight Rating: Our axles are rated at 7,000 each. We are good with the total weight on the axles at 12,450 lbs. However, we are on the edge with the driver side end of the leading axle. Not too bad but we need to watch for any unusual wear on the suspension.
GRAWR: Gross Rear Axle Weight Rating of the rear axle on the truck. Ford specifies this weight at 5,500 lbs. on our truck. We are at 3,550 lbs. so are good here.
GVWR of the truck: Our truck is rated for a weight of 14,500 lbs by Ford. We weighed in at 13,650 lbs. We are again good here.
The last thing is make sure of is that we are not unloading the front axle of the truck when we put the weight of the RV into the bed. Again, here we are good. The front end only changed by 50 lbs. on one side.
Overall we are fine with the weights. We do need to be careful not to add any more weight to the RV. I am going to reorganize the basement area and try to shift some weight to the right side so the one axle is not as loaded. I am also going to attempt to move some weight from the RV into the truck bed where we have more capacity. There isn’t a lot I can do, but knowing where you stand with weight helps a lot to plan how and what to carry.
While waiting on the computer place to open, we went to the Elkhart Fairgrounds which was hosting the Mennonite Relief fund raiser. This event sells stuff made at some of the 3rd world areas that they do missionary work at with the proceeds going back the people. There are also many other things being sold as well as food that goes to the relief fund.
We picked up some soap made in India. We are sort of hooked on the handmade soap so we get some whenever we see it.
|These were parked outside the Elkhart Fairgrounds.|
|Inside one of the fairgrounds buildings with the wares for sale.|
|Fun for the kids at the fairgrounds.|
While at the fairgrounds we went over to Howard and Linda’s 5th wheel to check out all of the new stuff they had done to it. They are parked at the fairgrounds weighing RVs and doing seminars at the various RV rallies in the next few weeks. They had a new roof, new outside paint, and new floors put in. This is their answer to getting a new unit; just make your old one new again. They also had their truck bed replaced with a hauler bed. Now their 9 year old rig looks new again!
|Howard and Linda's rig, Jeep and truck.|
We picked up the computer at 1pm and headed back to the RV about 30 minutes away in Goshen. We got hooked up and were on our way a little before 2 in the afternoon for the 3 hour trip 150 miles to Crawfordsville IN. Anyway, that was the plan. About an hour into the trip we encountered a closed main road, state road 31 south. The signs were very poor here. In fact there were no signs at the intersection where we got on 31. As we made the turn on to 31 there now was a sign saying that the road was closed 1 mile ahead and that the detour was back the way we just came!
|Very cool mural on a building in Elkhart IN.|
|An Elkhart elk statue in downtown Elkhart.|
|One of the many buggies along the way out of the Goshen/Elkhart area on Saturday.|
We turned around and headed further west on State road 8 and got on 35 and finally on 421 to 231 south to Crawfordsville. This detour added about an hour to our trip getting us to our campsite at the KOA a little after 6pm. By the time we got settled in it was almost 7pm. We picked up a couple of pizzas and headed over to the grandkids' house for dinner.
For the next week we will be here in Crawfordsville just hanging out. I am planning to reorganize the truck and basement for weight and for ease of use. This is really just an ongoing thing, reorganizing. We bought a new weather station with a wind measurement device which I plan to install too.
After our week in Crawfordsville we are planning to head to Nashville TN next.