4/22/2008

Hello all, John here again….

Derek pretty much summed up our trip to Madison, so I will pickup from when we got home.

Sunday night we walked in to the camper and it was a bit stuffy, so I flipped on the A/C. Well, seems everything I touch has to break lately, so why should the A/C unit be any different… I didn’t have much drive Sunday night to play with it much, we were both pretty tired. Since Prince has now decided that my wake up time is 1/4 to 6, I got up early Monday, and unscrewed the access panels and started running through the checklists from RVP. The #1 compressor wasn’t starting, but #2 was. #1 would just hum, then drop out. I figured best case it was a starting cap, worst case a seized compressor. So, I started poking around, and found a burnt wire on the relay, which I replaced. It didn’t have any effect. So I figured I would switch the start caps around and see if I can make #1 do what #2 did, and #1 didn’t. As I disconnected the wires to the caps, one of the charge wires was really loose… Like when I changed the circuit board last summer, I must have slipped the wire on between the plastic connector shield and the terminal, with the terminal not seated properly. It must have been sing enough to make it till now, because that fixed my problem straight off. Just to be sure I grabbed George’s Amp Clamp and checked the draw on both compressors, which are both well within the specs. I do need to get my own amp clamp, and every time I need one I think I need to just go buy one, but never do. Someday…

The rest of the day wasn’t too exciting… It was my day to watch the shop here, so Randy (the new guy — another work camper) were quick to get our chores done, and had some interesting conversation. So, far I like him. We have some differing points of view on some topics, but seem to have the ability to discuss them and appreciate each others position. He and his wife are brand new full-timers and are both a bit overwhelmed with just getting rid of stuff right now. So, we didn’t have a lot going on yesterday…

Since I was working late Derek brought home Qdoba, which was nice. We didn’t have much in the fridge since we were gone all weekend, and I didn’t get to the store, plus it was easy. We then watched the Preview Copy of “A Portable Tribe“. It came in the mail yesterday from Tom Murray.

Well, The Documentary was pretty good. It was interesting to see the progression of the story that Tom attempted to tell with the documentary process. It was more so interesting to see how the documentary came together from the first time Tom and I sat down and talked about it. I think he took it in a very original direction, and really brought to light a portion of our community that doesn’t really get noticed by anyone outside of the “Clique” if you will. He also tried to cover the entire spectrum of gay campers. The video started with more traditional RVer’s then ended with those further on the fringe. I was pretty anxious to see what parts of our interview made the cut… Yeah, I pretty much look like a big dork talking about our camper… I am glad we did this, and happy that Tom was able to make a story out of it. Overall, I think it was as good if not better than the other films of his I have seen. I am curious to see what he adds on the DVD, which will be out I am told late summer/early fall.

Today I was off, and of course woke up to rain. Thankfully it quickly cleared up and I was able to be somewhat productive. I went to breakfast with Perry and Rich S., then swung by Mack to get a hose clamp. The camper is leaking coolant from the lower hose. I tightened the clamp and it stopped, but the clamp is kinda worse for the wear, and I wanted to replace it. It is one of those with the springs on it to hold it tight… SO off to Mack. Of course they didn’t have that exact clamp, and the heavy duty ones they had were $20.00 a piece. I just got a couple standard ones, but didn’t change them yet. I might try another truck shop tomorrow…

So, after Mack I ran to Wal*Mart to get the weeks groceries. When I got home I thought I should have stopped at Lowes and picked up some bulbs for the big florescent light that was burnt out… So I ran back out. I also grabbed a couple “tin like” plastic panels they had. They are used to kitchen back-splashes, and I thought it might be a good solution to my front dash problem. The Leather covering was coming unstuck, and my last attempt at repair didn’t go so well. I couldn’t figure out how to take the panel off, so I figured I could cut off what I could reach, and glue these over the top. Well, I got home and decided to tackle the light first. It is kind of a pain since all the screws are hidden under wooden plugs you have to gently pry out and then re-glue to put back. I changed the bulbs, and no luck. Figuring it was the ballasts, I dropped the entire fixture, only to have it light up as I was taking it down… Seems my intermittent lights out problem was a un-crimped light connector. Yep, 7 years old, and the ground wire on the main kitchen light wasn’t crimped. So I cleaned up the burnt wire there and reconnected it right. Should work for a while now. Stupid People at Winnie!

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Re-Covered Lower Dash board

I also grabbed a “Touch up” marker at Lowes and a baggie of screw hole plugs to replace the couple that we had missing. The big project of the day was the dash. A few weeks ago I tried to fix it by pulling the faux leather cover back and re-glueing. It didn’t turn out so well. I then thought I would try those plastic panels I found at Lowes. I could just cut off the fabric since I couldn’t figure out how to get the whole dash panel off to re upholster it. While I was learning how to bend and form the plastic faux tin sheets, I removed some of the hardware from the dash and figured out how to remove the panel. Since I got it off I thought it would look best re-done like the factory did it, and not the faux-tin. So off to JoAnn’s Fabrics. They didn’t have an exact match of the fake leather, so I choose to go a different direction and pick a Contrast Color. I like the way it turned out. It was fairly easy to do once I got the panel off, and I only made one mistake that only I will every notice. So here is a picture… Before it was the same color as the rest of the dash.

So that’s all in our Exciting Tuesday!
Have a Good Night,

John

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