Our RV Travels

Updates on our Full-Time RV'ing lifestyle. Feel free to add your comments, replies and stories of your own.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Back in Tennessee

Loretta and sister in laws at family reunion

Been rather eventful since leaving Frewsburg, NY.  The end of September, we moved to Camp Bell Campground at Campbell, NY.  There we visited my classmate and Loretta's cousin Jim Harrison and wife.  Also my niece Annette who lives near the campground came by to visit us.  We also visited Ham Radio friends Herman and Winnie in Painted post as well as visiting Corning Glass Works and the Corning Outlet Store in Corning.  On the 2nd, we went to a benefit for the family of Loretta's Great niece near Elmira.  
I called out ex partner Russ in NJ and planned to stay an extra day at Camp Bell to arrange a possible visit.  However Sunday morning was threatening heavy rain and Loretta wasn't feeling well.  So we hooked up and headed south before the rain arrived.  Loretta was feeling somewhat better by time we got near Williamsport, PA so suggested a visit to Pennsylvania Dutch Country.  We consulted the campground guide and located one near where we wanted to go.  I programmed the shortest routePottsville where I could get off the road and found one of the brakes smoking.  As that would take some time to cool down and it was nearing dark, I went in and talked to the manager.  She said it would be OK to spend the night in the lot, so after a delicious supper there we settled in for the night. into the GPS and we headed there.  Shortest was NOT the best route, we got to see parts of PA that I had never driven truck in.  Many hills and crooked roads.  We turned onto one that was fairly flat but it said turn right on Gilbert Mountain Road.  I looked at the terrain to the right and said NO WAY.  We found a place to turn around and took a different path.  Many of the hills were so steep that even in 2nd gear, I had to use the brakes a lot.  We found a Hoss' Restaurant parking lot in

Next morning it was raining hard, so we decided the PA Dutch tour was off and Loretta wasn't too chipper anyway.  We got to I-81 and headed towards Tennessee, trying to contact a cousin of Loretta's at Chambersburg.  Loretta was never able to get an answer so we continued on into Virginia.  We stopped at the first Flying J truck stop for a bite to eat, but Pilot has purchased Flying J and they were remodeling.  They didn't even have any RV parking available.  As we were less than an hour from Centreville, I called our friend Alan Anderson there.  He invited us to stop by for a visit.  Again the GPS took us through some interesting and scenic countryside through some of the state I had never seen.  We got to the Andersons, parked in their driveway and set up for our visit.  While there, we went out to nearby restaurants, did some shopping, visited, etc.  Al and I also did a minor repair on our RV where a damaged tire had loosened the fender.

We spent almost a week there and on Sunday got ready to head to Tennessee.  I got secured and hooked up and as Al was helping me out of the driveway realized I had NOT cranked up the rear stabilizer jacks.  I got out to find them bent back almost 45 degrees.  But backing up onto them got them almost straight.  However an electric drill would not raise them and I had to use the hand crank.  But shortly we were on the road heading home.  

As it was a late start, we were still on the road as darkness neared.  We were going up a hill over an hour east of Roanoke when the engine temperature went sky high with warning light and alarm going off.  I pulled off the road  and opened hood to find water all over the place and not sure that the fan was engaged.  I called Road Service and a wrecker was dispatched.  A very nice State Trooper stopped and visited a while telling the closest service facility was Lee Hi Truck Plaza about 10 miles behind us.  The wrecker arrived driven by the very nice owner.  He got us on the hook, removed the drive shaft and after turning around at the next exit took us back to the truck stop.  It was a rather rough ride for Loretta as the 2 of us were sitting on a rather narrow seat and in order to engage a couple of gears he would strike her leg with the shift lever.  He dropped us off in the parking lot and put driveshaft back in, then we had supper in the restaurant.  

As I had restarted the truck while waiting for wrecker and steam sprayed all over I feared the worst.  Next morning a mechanic put some water in and I started the engine and unhooked.  I drove into the shop and everything seemed to be working OK.  This had happened once before and an International shop could find nothing wrong.  The pressure cap wasn't working properly and he thought that could be the problem.  He did find a couple of loose hose clamps which he also tightened. They obtained a new one from Roanoke and when it arrived, we got on the road again, spending the night east of Bristol.  
Tuesday went well and we thought we might get to Chapel Hill in the evening.  BUT we ran into heavy rain before leaving I40, then before we got to Murfreesboro

We spent the night at Stan's Truck Stop and after calling the shop headed into Columbia.  RP had told me that he suspected the thermostat and inquired about an override on the fan clutch.  When we got there, he put a man on the job right away.  While waiting for the thermostat to arrive I traced some wires and found that installing an override switch would be no problem so had the mechanic install a switch for that.   We borrowed a car to shop at Wal-Mart and when we returned repairs had been completed.  As it was almost time for service, I had that done before we came here to Chapel Hill.

We got mostly set up before calling it a day.  Thursday I completed the setup, then for some reason opened the inside access to the water heater.  The floor was covered with water.  I checked all connections and could find no leak.  It appeared there might be one around the electric heating element.  I replaced that and thought I had problem licked.  But Friday the floor was still wet.  Thinking it might be water spilled when changing the element, I got a hair dryer and directed it onto the area, but part time 2 days didn't get rid of the water.  I called Atwood and the service rep there told me that the tank could be leaking.  She could sell me a new tank for under $400, but it is a tough job changing that.  I checked Camping World in Nashville and they thought they had one in stock.  BUT it would cost about $875 and 120 mile drive to get it.  I went online and located the correct one in California for under $600 including shipping.  That should arrive Tuesday and I expect no real problem installing it.  I have used the hair dryer to get rid of most of the water, but now have bypassed the heater and will have to heat water on stove for a few days.

I had to go to Columbia for a CT Scan today and thought I might start removing the old water heater when I got home.  But my back went out without me again while there.  I saw my chiropractor, but still hurt so that task can wait.  We have been taking advantage of the $1.25 lunches at the Senior Center also.  Yesterday Loretta's nephew and I removed the damaged stabilizer jacks and straightened them out.  Only some bend in the screw which was easily straightened - Lucky,

Well that should be enough to read for now.
GOD Bless
 Andy and Loretta


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