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Back On The Horse . . .

We were up at 5:30 this morning and were pulling out of our site by 6:15, right on schedule. I had prepped everything the night before so all I had to do was put the key in the truck’s ignition to unlock the steering and disconnect shore power, and we were ready to roll.




The reason for all this early bird crap was twofold. One, we wanted to get an early start so we would be traveling in the coolest part of the day. And Two, I wanted to get diesel at the Flying J before we got on I-55 and headed north. We still had plenty enough to make it to our destination with about 250 miles to spare, but we would probably be at or below the point where the generator would shut down due to the fuel level. Which for our 150 gallon tank is about 40 gallons.

Of course since our generator isn’t working, it normally wouldn’t make any difference, but I’m hoping I can get it fixed while we we’re here. I’m going under the assumption that it’s a fuel problem, since it acts like it does when it quits due to low fuel levels.

Plus the fact that when I ran the generator out on its slide and checked, it didn’t show any error codes. So based on this and some Googling about possible problems, I’m leaning toward a bad fuel pump.

It could also be a bad fuel filter, but it was just replaced by RV Mobile Lube a couple of months ago. Now it could be a defective filter, but the generator ran fine for about 5 hours the first day, and then quit after about 30 minutes the second.

So I’m looking at a defective brand new fuel filter, or an almost 20 year defective fuel pump. And the fact that a lot of RV’ers apparently have had fuel pump problems with their generators.

So being a belt and suspenders (literally and figuratively)  kind of guy and wanting cover all the bases, I ordered both a new filter and a new fuel pump from Amazon, and they should be here tomorrow.

I’ll replace the filter first since it’s easier and then go from there. Stay tuned.

By leaving the park at 6:15, I had hoped to be dieseled up and on the road by 7, but due to a slow pump in the RV lane, and the fact that I had to run my card through 4 times since the pump shut down at $75, we finally pulled out about 7:15am. Of course I also went inside for coffee/cappuccinos to go, but hey, the necessities of life, right?

We made our first pit stop about an hour down the road (coffee, OK?) and Jan really surprised me. She said she wanted to drive.

Now Jan used to drive a couple of hours on every trip, but that came to a screeching halt after the Big Blowout of 2015. And she’s never driven since. Until today.

And she did great, driving for about an hour and a half or so, until our next stop. So I guess she’s back on the horse again.

Since like Jan said the other day, the sky was kind of ‘overcasty’, we stayed cool and comfortable with just the fans running, so all in all, a nice smooth trip.

We had called ahead to get our site # so we pulled into the Timber Trails RV Park here in Mulberry Grove, IL about 1:15, went straight to our site, and got set up.

Later, about 5:30, we met Jan’s sister Debbie and her husband Jim at Los Amigos, a local Mexican restaurant. Jan and Debbie spent most of the meal comparing calendars to coordinate all the activities that are scheduled between now and Sunday when everyone leaves.

Tomorrow morning at 9 we’re all meeting at the Denny’s for breakfast, and probably for more comparing and scheduling, too.

Now more Catching Up on the Catching Up:

On Friday as we were approaching Byram, MS and the Swinging Bridges RV Park, I noticed the rig was hitting the bumps in the road a lot harder than normal, so the next morning before we left, I got under the rig to see if what I suspected, had happened. And it did.

The rod connecting the chassis to the air bag proportioning valve had come loose, looking like this.

Loose Proportioning Valve Rod

With this rod not connected, no air gets to the rear air bags, making for a very rough ride. This has happened 3 or 4 times over the last 11 years, usually due to the rubber grommet deteriorating and coming apart. And I keep spares on hand just because of this.

But this time the rod had just pulled out, even though it was still so tight that the rod wouldn’t go back in. So I loosened the hose clamp, inserted the rod, and tightened it all back down.

Fixed Proportioning Valve Rod

Now we were good to go.

Now on to Saturday:

I mentioned in that day’s blog that when we got back from Charlie Vergos Rendezvous about 5:15, we found the power was off to the park. Originally we were told it should be back on in about an hour, but that came and went.

Finally about 8:30 I started Googling and found out what power company served our area, and then went to their Power Outage page. It said the outage had started at 4:42pm and would be corrected by 10pm.

But when that time also came and went, I checked again at about 10:15 and it now said 11:45. And that turned out to be a lot more accurate, since the power came back on at 11:37. Cool at last.

Now Sunday:

About 2pm Jan and I drove over to the Cordova area of Memphis to have more BBQ, this time at another favorite of ours, Jim & Nick’s BBQ. We eaten at this one a couple of times on past visits, and even more times back in Alabama, including the original one in Birmingham, and several others with friends.

We always start off with the Hot Link Sausage Plate appetizer, that comes with a delicious homemade Pimento Cheese, as well as some sliced Serrano peppers for a little more spice.

Jim & Nick's Sausage Plate

A really good start.

For her entrée Jan had a salad

Jim & Nick's Jan's Salad

and the Grilled Catfish, which looked kind of different, but she said was really good.

JIm & Nick's Grilled Catfish

I of course got the ribs with beans and the collard greens, something you don’t see too often on a menu, But Jim & Nick’s, being from Alabama, know how to make good collard greens. One of my favorites.

Jim & Nick's Ribs

Then it was on down the road a couple of miles to the WalMart for a few things, and so Jan could get a haircut. But they were closing and not taking anymore customers.

But we did find a Supercuts right down the road that was still open, so Jan got it done there.

The filter and fuel pump should be in tomorrow, but it may be Wednesday or Thursday before I really have a chance to tear into it. We’ll see.




Thought for the Day:
  “No power is exercised with more fervor than small power.” – Mark Twain

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2 Responses to Back On The Horse . . .

  1. Bonnie Clegg says:

    At the Flying J we go inside, leave our card with the cashier, go back outside, fill the motorhome, go back inside, pay the fueled bill and then get our coffee. Easy. Or when we use our Flying J credit card the pump never stops until the motorhome is full. Normally, we use our Sam’s Business Club card for 5% back on the total and our Camping World Good Sam’s card for an additional 5 cent per gallon off at the pump.

  2. Elizabeth says:

    Wow, glad you are having fun…in spite of the things needing fixed recently!! Also, bravo to Jan for getting behind the wheel.  I have not driven our car in a couple years now…I think about it sometimes…but so far…just cannot.  Too many crazy drivers in this region…though where we currently are, at least some parts are not so bad.  Maybe one of these days…

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