Daily Archives: October 18, 2020

Well, Almost, But Not Quite . . .

After coffee this morning, I was back outside about 1pm to finally mount the oil filter adapter head.

My first job was spread a thin coat of the Permatex Ultra Black sealer onto the gasket like this.

Oil Filter Adapter Gasket 20201018

I did in on a sheet of wax paper so that when I lifted the gasket up all the excess stayed on the paper. Then I mounted the gasket onto the adapter head and carefully spread a coating on the other side, the side that will seal up against the overhead flange.

Then it was back under the rig to mount the adapter. Because of the way the bolt holes are arranged, both the adapter and the gasket are keyed so they only go on one way. And it only took me about 15 minutes to get it in place and tightened down. And since I installed the Helicoils I was able to torque the bolts down to about 25# rather than the original 17#.

Oil Filter Adapter Mounted 20201018

So now I was ready to install the oil filter itself, and that’s where things went awry. I topped off the Rotella 15W-40 oil in the oil filter I had stored away, (it’s supposed to be installed full of oil) and crawled back under the rig.

The first problem is lifting the 12 pounds or so of filter and oil over my head and then trying to screw it on the adapter. You’re supposed to tighten it down hand-tight and then use your strap wrench to give it another 3/4 turn to tighten it down.

But the problem was that I could not get it started. It’s always taken me a few minutes  to get it going because it’s slightly cocked off to one side a bit. But today it seemed to be impossible.

You would think that with those big threads it wouldn’t be a problem. But 30 minutes later I was still at it. I even let it down to run my fingers around the threads on both the adapter and the filter, but I could feel no problem. Finally after another 15 minutes or so my arms were just too tired to hold it overhead any longer so I called it a day.

Getting cleaned up, Jan and I headed over to our local Denny’s for our usual breakfast for dinner. We both had the Ultimate Omelet, with Sausage, Bacon, Ham, Mushrooms, Tomatoes, Green Peppers, Onions, and Cheese. And along an English Muffin, and fruit instead of the hash browns, it’s really delicious.

Denny's Ultimate Omelet 2

Coming home I thought of a way to test the fit on the oil filter. I dug out my old adapter head, installed the old screws, holding them in place with 4 leftover Helicoils so they didn’t fall out.

Oil Filter Adapter Test Mount 20201018

Then I screwed it into onto the filter with absolutely no problem.

Oil Filter Adapter Test Mount on Oil Filter 20201018

You can’t see it from this angle, but it’s screwed on the filter and tightened down.

So I guess come Tuesday I’ll be back under the rig and try it again.


Thought For The Day:

I don’t have grey hair. I have wisdom highlights.



Elkhart, IN

October 18, 2009

Home of the Great Pumpkin…

Jan decided she wanted to eat at Das Essenhaus again so we headed over to Middlebury, only to find out that it was closed on Sunday.


Our GPS showed a number of other restaurants down the road in Shipshewana, about 7 miles away, only to find that every restaurant we tried was also closed.

Double Bummer!

We saw a lot of Amish carriages along the way, so maybe that was why all the restaurants were closed.

Anyway, we ended up making a big loop out into the country.  A nice drive, but we were starting to get hungry.

When I mentioned to Jan that our big loop was taking us right back by El Maguey, the Mexican restaurant we had eaten at last night.

So what was good for dinner is good for lunch right?  And it was, too!

After lunch we headed back down a country road to get some pictures of a pumpkin patch we’d seen last week.


We also went by the American Countryside Farmers Market and found it also closed. Check the web when we got home we found it’s only open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.  We’ll go back then.

Coming home we stopped off at Menard’s and Big K looking for some small plastic containers.

Finding those we went next door to Martin’s, a local supermarket chain to get some Honey Crisp apples.

On our way out of the store, we got Pumpkin Latte at Starbucks.  We decided we like Starbuck’s Pumpkin Latte better than Dunkin’ Donuts, which is good, because the Starbuck’s is much closer.

A few minutes later we were back home at the rig.

Thought For The Day:

Always remember, it’s Pillage first, THEN Burn!



More Elkhart, IN

October 18, 2011

Buns and Bays . . .

Well, the rain and other miscellaneous bad weather fronts moved in right on schedule today, with more high winds gusting to 40 mph waiting in the wings for tomorrow. Oh boy!

After our coffee I got back on the phone with Galveston Bay RV Resort. We’ve stayed there over the holidays for the last three years and really like the place. But after I called to get our site #, I realized they had put us in a site too small for our coach, so I called them back to get it straighten out. Then while waiting to hear back from them, I spent some time on the phone with a client trying to straighten out his email problem. And as soon as I hung up with him, Galveston Bay called back with a good site for us for this winter. These photos are just one reason we like this park so much. This is the view out our windshield.

Gal Bay Park 5

Galveston Bay Sunset

After a great lunch topped off with one of Miss Terry’s delicious cinnamon buns, I got ready to head over to the RV/MH Hall of Fame to work on setting up their new computer system. Ended up having to order a new external HD case from Amazon to help straighten things out, but it’s finally starting to come together.

Leaving the museum, I stopped off for one of my semi-annual haircuts before heading home about 5. And then a little while later we headed out to Culver’s, a fast food chain where the food tastes much better than fast food.

All in all, a nice day, despite the weather.


Thought for the Day:

“It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people’s minds.” — Samuel Adams



In Virginia

October 18, 2012

Boxes and BBQ . . .

Today was another nice, quiet day. You can never have too many.

The park maintenance guy came back to tell us the water was back on for a while so we could top off our tanks if we needed to. He said the backhoe man was coming this afternoon but didn’t know when it would be fixed.

We’ve all been using our onboard water supply since day before yesterday, but we still had over a half a tank left after one wash load and 4 showers, but topped off anyway.

I forgot to mention the other day that Janis Thomas came by Tuesday night to drop off some delicious candy before they headed Wednesday morning for North Carolina.

Thanks, Janis. You too, Lenny.

A little later I talked to Galveston Bay RV Park to confirm that we would be arriving there one month from today, and to be sure they would have a space for us for the winter.

Next I spent some time cleaning up after Mister’s latest box devouring episode.

Mister in Box 3

I’ve mentioned before that Mister loves cardboard boxes. He likes to cram into them  and then he starts eating them. Well, not really eating them, he just tears off chunks and then spits them out. Over a period of a week or so, he’ll eat a box down to the ground.

And of course that leaves little pieces of cardboard everywhere. So after throwing out the remains of the box, I swept and vacuumed up all the bits and pieces too.

Mister will just have to wait for the next Amazon order to come in.

A little later we all headed up the road to Willey’s BBQ to have dinner. It turned out to be pretty good, except their version of ‘hot’ BBQ would get them laughed out of Texas.

Willey's BBQ

Leaving Willey’s we drove about 10 miles north to the closest Wal-Mart up in King George. Everyone needs a Wal-Mart fix now and then.

The park guy stopped by again before we left and said the water was back on, so hopefully that’s fixed.

Tomorrow we’re going to head south about 60 miles to check Urbanna, Gloucester, and the Chesapeake Bay Thousand Trails.

Hopefully the 40% chance of rain will hold off. We’ll see.

——————————————————————————————————————-Thought for the Day:

A woman begins by resisting a man’s advances and ends by blocking his retreat. – Oscar Wilde



North Zulch Texas Gate Guarding

October 18, 2014

“You Fall Good”

Well, our vehicle count dropped again, down to 183 from yesterday’s 202. That’s always nice. The new workover rig came in this morning, but except for the rig itself, which is all on one big truck, we didn’t get a lot of traffic from it, just a few extra workers.

Early on, before our two fracks started up, someone had mentioned that there could be a problem fracking too close to a current drilling operation. At the time we thought that might delay the fracks until the drill rig in front of us finished up and shut down.

But then then both fracks began and we didn’t think anymore about it. But today someone said that they alternate. When the fracks start actually fracking, the drill rig shuts down for that period. Which explains the long periods of inaction I see regularly across the street. You learn something new, and all that.

“You fall good” is what Jan said when I did a face plant in the gravel this morning. When I get up in the morning, normally around 11:15 to 11:30, I fix coffee and bring it out to Jan. I’m usually just wearing shorts, a T-Shirt, and Crocs. We sit out for a while and talk, and if anything comes in the gate I get up and log them in so Jan can take a little break.

Well, this time when I got up I didn’t realize that Mister, who came out when I did, had gotten his leash wrapped around my feet. So when I got up I took about three steps, and SPLAT!

Now it’s been about 50 years, but between judo-jujitsu and learning to jump out of perfectly good airplanes, I guess my body hasn’t forgotten how to hit and roll. So the only damage was a small abrasion on my left knee as I rolled off to the left.

The last time this happened was a couple of years ago when we were in Lake Tahoe. We had stopped at one of the scenic pullouts along the lake, and as we were walking back to the truck, I was fooling with my camera, and stepped off a high curb that I swear wasn’t there before.

Without thinking about it, I pulled the camera up against my body, and was apparently already rolling when I hit the pavement. Before I knew it, I had rolled over completely and come up on the other side. What’s really strange is that I don’t even remember hitting the ground. But I was stiff and sore the next day, believe me.

Today was a two-fer, or maybe a three-fer, with Ama’s frack food delivery. They actually deliver food twice a day to the frack site. Once around noon, and then again in the evening. This way both shifts get to eat. Normally when they drop off food for us, it’s from the noontime run. But today we got food dropped off both times.

Jan says we’ve got to eat faster because we’re running out of room in the refrigerator. And in trying to do that, we didn’t split tonight’s meal. We each had our own, and boy, was it good.

It was a grilled chicken breast, stuffed with cream cheese and HOT jalapenos, and wrapped in bacon, along with steamed broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots, and mashed potatoes. And not to forget, banana pudding for dessert.

Man, I was really stuffed when I waddled off the bed a little later. And I still am. I guess we shouldn’t try to eat like oil rig workers.

Lowell sent over this photo of Landon’s Halloween costume.

Landon the Astronaut

Note the thick rubber collar around his neck. It’s to hold his space helmet.


Thought for the Day:

A simple rule of life: if you can be blamed, you’re responsible.



Carthage Texas Gate Guarding

October 18, 2015

When the Rig’s Away . . .

The Gate Guards Play.

Again, another day of resting up and goofing off. But on the other hand, it seems like we should be gate guarding, or something.

Pretty much the only vehicles coming through are the guys running the pumps at the frack pond that are now supplying water to the new frack site, and we don’t log them anyway.

I did get a few things done around the rig that I’ve been putting off, and tomorrow I’m probably going to bite the bullet and tear my laptop apart to replace the power jack, but we’ll see.

When I walked around to the backside of the rig the other day, I saw these on the ground.

Immortal Fries

These are some leftover Whataburger fries that just won’t die. They’ve been out here since the very first time I brought Whataburger back to the rig. We both got Combos and couldn’t eat all the fries. So we tossed them out for the birds. So far there are no birds, and that was five weeks ago.

What are these really made of?

I’m mean, the birds won’t eat’em. The ants won’t eat’em.  What will?

We had the herd of cows around the rig again today.

More Cows

They just walk by and stare at us, and then move on. At least they’re not doing like last year when they kept tripping over the satellite wires and yanking the dish off the stand.


For the last week or so, I’ve had a pesky piece of malware in my desktop computer called ‘cnfg.toolbarservices’ lurking around in my machine. It kept popping up as being blocked from accessing the Internet by Malwarebytes, but nothing I tried could find it and kill it.

But some Googling told me about SpyHunter, a Spyware Detection and Removal Tool from Enigma Software. Since it was free to download, I thought I’d give it a try.


And it not only found ‘cnfg.toolbarservices’, but a lot of other things that Malwarebytes had been also blocking. But neither Malwarebytes, SuperAntiSpyware, or Spybot – Search and Destroy would actually find them.

But the hook here is that the free download only detects bad stuff, but it won’t remove it until you buy an Activation Key. $39.95 gets you a six-month license, including personalized help from them if you come across something really difficult to eradicate. You just email them a copy of the Support Log that the program generates and they will send you back a customized solution to your program.

I normally don’t care for the ‘license’ type software, but since nothing else had even found the problem, much less eliminated it, I decided to spring for the Key. And 5 minutes later, I had the Key, the malware program (and the rest) had been killed off, and my computer was rebooting.

I’ll wait a few days to see if the fix holds before I give my final stamp of approval. I’ll let you know. But it can’t hurt to download the program and see what it finds.

For our second night of freedom, we headed out for dinner once again about  4:45. Although last night we just pulled the gate closed since we hadn’t let the water guys from the frack up the road know we would be locking up. But the Company Man had given us a key and told us to lock the gate when we left, so tonight we did.

I’ve seen a number of these multi-lock gates, but this is the first one like this.

Gate Locks

Usually they use kind of a barrel mechanism, but they all do the same thing; let several people open a gate with their own key.

Our dinner selection for tonight was The Jalapeno Tree, a Mexican place we last ate at the first week of September when we had a couple of nights off between the frack prep work finishing up, and the frack crew and equipment actually moving in.

Jalapeno Tree

Tonight we started things off with a White Sangria, made with Muscato wine and three or four fruit juices.

Jalapeno Tree Sangria

I think the last time we had an alcoholic drink was this past April in Las Vegas at the Lindo Michoacan Mexican restaurant down in Henderson. Twice in one year. I think we’re on a binge.

Jan had the Chili Rellenos, the same as last time.

Jalapeno Tree Chili Relleno

A lot of places only have them with cheese, but here they also have them with beef, which is Jan’s favorite.

Last time I had a Combo Platter, but this time I went with the El Diablo Jack Combo Fajitas.

Jalapeno Tree Fajitas

It’s Beef and Chicken, with crispy bacon pieces, sautéed mushrooms, and covered in Monterey Jack Cheese. Beef, Chicken, and Pork on the same plate. You can’t go wrong.

And I didn’t.

They were really good. And we both had plenty to bring home.


Thought for the Day:

Never take to sawin’ on the branch that’s supportin’ you, unless you’re being’ hung from it.



Heading South to Gate Guard

October 18, 2016

Gateward Bound . . .

This morning started out slow, but got busy fast.

After nothing from anybody SiteWatch-wise, I put in another call to Todd about 12:30, and ten minutes later he called back. We talked for about 20 minutes going over what the job entailed and what we could expect.

We will need FRC’s, hardhats, glasses, and steel-toed shoes. So we’ll need hardhats and Jan needs steel-toed shoes. I’ll probably just order her a pair of these Skechers from Amazon.

Skechers for Jan

Hard to believe they’re steel-toed.

We’ll be working opposite 12 hour shifts at a guard shack in the Kenedy / Karnes City area, probably following a Marathon Completion crew.

The only think out of the ordinary, at least for us, is that we have to get a DBA (Doing Business As) license (cost $11 at the courthouse) and then open a business account at a bank. We will be paid as contractors on a 1099, but for some reason they will only pay into a business account. Strange.

Todd also said our expired security licenses shouldn’t be a problem, and that we should just be able to renew them online. Then we’ll have to transfer them from GGS Services to SiteWatch.

So the gist of all this is that we’ll head out tomorrow morning about 11 for the 3+ hour trip down to Kenedy . Todd, and a couple of others on Facebook, recommended the Lone Star RV Park #2 so that’s where we’re heading.

I talked to Nancy, the owner, this afternoon and they have a short-term/long-term site available for us. Don’t know the price for sure, but I’ve heard $450-500 and that includes electric. They also have a completely free laundry, which is very unusual.

Lone Star Laundry

After we get the DBA/Bank Account stuff done, the next thing on the list is to attend the Marathon Orientation Course Friday afternoon at 1pm. So maybe we can be on a gate by Saturday, who knows.

About 1pm, to celebrate Jan and I drove in to have the lunch buffet at Schobel’s Restaurant. Coming home we stopped off at the park office to let them know that we’d be leaving tomorrow morning and to put our remaining money on account.

Later in the afternoon, I went online to see about our license renewals, but I quickly found a problem. You could renew an expired license, but not if it’s been expired for more than a year. Which let’s us out.

So we have to start over, but I’m not sure if that includes fingerprint cards or not. So I’ll find out tomorrow.

Thought for the Day:

I have done so much with so little for so long, that I can do almost anything with practically nothing.



Now With More Cinnamon

October 18, 2019

More of It’s Like Y2K All Over Again . . .

Back in February I posted this article about the upcoming GPS Week Number Rollover Problem starting April 6, 2019. And then I kind of forget about it with the prepping for our European trip.

But now there’s been a date change.

Here’s what I wrote back in February:

It’s Like Y2K All Over Again , ,

Come April 6th, 2019, be careful where you drive. Or at least be careful where your  GPS tells you to drive. Turns out that in a retro-Y2K twist, the date stamp in the GPS will reset, and it suddenly won’t know where it, and you, are. This is because they only programmed a 10bit register to store the week, So every 1024 weeks, or about 20 years, the date rolls back to zero.

This of course, is reminiscent of the whole Y2K fiasco where to save memory space (back in the days when it was really expensive) they stored the year as two digits, i.e., 1980 was ‘80’, 1999 was’99, and of course, 2000 was ‘00’.


Newer GPS implementations use a 13bit storage area, which should last until the sun goes red giant and engulfs the planet. Hopefully that’ll be long enough.

You can read more about it here:

GPS Date Problem

Now, units produced since 2010 or so, should be using the new ICD-200/IS-GPS-200 specifications, and should be OK. I say ‘should’, because apparently some manufacturers have been somewhat lax in updating their software.

Saves a few bucks, don’t you know. So be careful out there.

But then today I got this email from Verizon.

Verizon GPS Rollover Email

Which says that the whole thing has been delayed until November 3rd. And now the problems extend to devices as recent as 2016.


As far as phones, luckily for Jan and I, only her Galaxy S5 is affected, and it’s just her phone here in the rig.

However, it looks like our Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 will also have a problem, disappointing since we often used it to display WAZE data on long trips.

You can click here to find out if your device(s) are on the GPS Naughty List.

Thought For The Day:

Now With More Cinnamon!

Charmin Pumpkin Spice

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