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RV Log Page # 0016
Wednesday - March 3, 2010
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   Rain . . . rain . . . rain ! We committed to this trip to get away from this stinking wet stuff! Of the 6 days we've been on the road and 4 places we've now set up camp, we have had 2 days with 'some' sunshine!
   We are now at the Visalia, CA,  KOA - 300 miles from Cloverdale. The drive down was no too bad. The drive on US 101 and I-580 left some to be desired. Lots of potholes and cracks in the roadways. The road was pretty level - comparatively speaking to US 101 in Northern CA. Interstate 5 was great, as always, and fuel economy picked up!
   This is the nicest KOA thus far. (That is MY opinion. PLEASE NOTE: Shirlee doesn't always agree with me on these things, and I do fail to ask sometimes!) Shirlee's fav thus far is Cloverdale - WINE Country!
   The people here (managers) recommended a place to eat and they were right on the money!
   We are looking to change our sleeping accomodations. The air mattress we have on top of the existing mattress just makes it too high, and the air mattress has to be blown up occasionally. We're going to look for a 3 inch, or so, thick piece of foam to add on top of the original mattress and see how that goes.
   We've been keeping an eye on the weather, especially in Santa Fe. It is not looking good there - low's in the 20's - during our scheduled stay, so we have decided to cancel out Santa Fe. It's going to be cool enough in Sedona, but we should be able to manage. Instead we are thinking of heading to Mesa, AZ for 3 or so days and then on to Tucson for another 3 or so days. From there on to Las Cruces, NM and on to Van Horn, TX. From there we will head to Kerville, TX where we will be back on track and on our original schedule. We will miss Santa Fe and Carlsbad, but we'll see them at  some future time.
   Tommorrow we are planning on visiting Sequoia Nat. Park and some 'wild cat' place, depending on the weather. Supposed to be clear and still! Let's see now ... how does it go ... 'Clear up to your A_ _, and still coming down!' We'll see.
   Today marks the end of our first week on the road. Despite a couple of 'glitches', we are really enjoying this trip and we are looking forward to each and every day.
   Our e-mail 'sending' is sporatic. Depends on where we are. So, if you e-mail us and don't hear back right away, be patient. If nothing else we'll phone a response.
Thursday - March 4, 2010
   Woke up to a beautiful morning today. We are planning to drive up to Sequoia Nat. Park and also a preserve that has some 'wild' cats! Should be interesting.
   Went out to start the truck and . . . it started, but ran really rough, pouring out black smoke, kinda like once before in Florence, OR, when I didn't have the block heater plugged in - right Wally !?! Well, this time it ran rough for a minute and then died. It would not fire again. It would turn over, but not fire.
   I got in the local Yellow Pages and called a shop that was fairly close and the guy said that if I could get it in there that he would take a look.
   I got hold of a wrecker and 2 hours later they finally showed up. It was 11:00 AM, and we were scheduled to leave tommorrow for 'Vegas!
   Got it to the shop and the guy came out and said 'before we take it off the wrecker, let me put my computer on it to see what it reads. It may not be something I can fix.' Great! He hooks it up to his computer and it comes back that the 'fuel-injector module' has failed. No rhyme or reason - it just 'failed', and he couldn't fix it as Ford has proprietary license on the software and it would have to go to Ford.
   I said my 'thanx anyway' and we proceeded to take it to the local Ford shop in Visalia.
   We got to the shop and, fortunately, they were not real busy. They put it on their computer and got the same results - Fuel-injector module failed. Good news . . . they had one in stock. Bad news . . . the module cost  around $750.00, plus another $300.00 to put it on. Did they KNOW we were in a jam and HAD to have it that day??? Anyway, after consulting with Shirlee back at the KOA, I told them to do it. Hey, what else could we do. The guy that was to work on it had to finish up what he was doing first, and then he would be right on it.
   About an hour passed and he came out to the truck - parked out back - with a new module, and proceeded to remove the old one. Got to talking with him (nice kid) and tried to learn what I could from him about what went wrong and why. He said that these things just fail sometimes - nothing I did caused it.
   When he got the new one hooked up, he then had to program it - the proprietary stuff! He said that the new software upgrade should help the cold-start issues I had. Well, that would be proved when he tried to start it when he was done, as it had been rather cool (below 50 degrees) all day, and that would be a problem without the block heater being plugged it.
   He got all done and turned the ignition key - started right up - no worries mate! Wow, what a difference!
   I paid the bill and headed back to the RV park. It was almost 5PM by then and the day was shot. We decided to just stay 'home' and watch 'Project Runway', as I had managed to get the satellite hooked up and running. Shirlee made some great Mexican soup and we sat down to eat and watch TV.
   We went to bed fairly early as we had a LONG drive tommorrow - Las Vegas!