Saturday, June 27, 2009

Convair Reunion

A brave young lady tried to organize a General Dynamics-Convair Reunion. Unfortunately the flyer she sent out per E mail did not get spread around. People rather send chain letters nobody wants.
We had fun though. Tooling and Manufacturing Engineering was well represented.
Lake Poway is a wonderful spot for a get together. The weather was just right.
It was wonderful seeing some of the people.

Gary Price seems to talk to the BBQ. He was cooking something.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

San Diego County Fair

Tuesday the 16th we went to the Fair.
Since I am cheap or thrifty, we choose this day because it was the two dollar entry fee day. There were a lot of other cheap people, too many. To top it off, it was kids free day.
The fair never changes. Besides the animals there is always the Vitamatic guy selling his juice making devices.
The wood working clubs have always beautiful displays. It was a tiring day.

One has to be patient to get in the place. We stood in line for a long time.
We got to ride a double decker bus to get back to our car. The advertising on the side of the bus was from England. Doreen felt at home a bit.

On Thursday the 18th I took the motorhome to Santee to National Spring. They installed new springs in the back. It raised the motorhome two inches, I had expected more.
Chappy and Dottie picked me up and we had breakfast at a restaurant. After breakfast we took Dottie home and I went with Chappy to Kaiser. He had his eyes checked. I drove him home since he had his eyes dilated.
Doreen came to Santee to meet us for lunch at Home Town Buffet. The four of us had a wonderful meal and a good conversation.
Doreen went home after lunch and Chappy brought me back to the motorhome.
The job was completed at 3:15 PM. I called San Diego Trailer Supply and asked them whether I could come over for measuring the height of the motorhome for installing the jacks for the leveling system.
They were busy but could accommodate me the next day at 9:00 AM. Instead of going home and fight the Fair traffic on I-5, I went to the Elks Lodge in El Cajon and stayed there during the night.
In the morning I went back to National Spring and asked them whether they could do
better. They informed me that it would change the handling of the vehicle if they would raise the back more.
At 8:30 AM I arrived at San Diego Trailer Supply. They measured for installing the jacks and told me that they could change the attachment for the tow bar. They will cut out 2.5 inches.
I will remove the swivel skid wheels and install the solid steel wheels, which gains another 1.5 inches. This means a total gain of six inches.
Next Wednesday I will bring the old motorhome to San Diego Trailer Supply for removing of the HWH leveling system.
The rear jacks can not be used on the new motorhome. Higher capacity jacks have to be installed.
I took off already the solar panels and need some time to install them on the new motorhome.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Maiden Voyage

After laying in bed and thinking about the electrical problem, I could not wait to get up and give it another try.
I found the contacts for the left and right signal lights on the seven wire outlet on the motorhome, using a test light.
Later, I got Doreen to push the brake pedal and the contacts for the left and right signal lights lit up.
Now I was totally confused. I went to Highway Trailer in Escondido and showed them both parts, the male connector matching the outlet on the motorhome and the flat female connector for the car.
I was told that the colors of the wires for each system are different and they handed me a sheet of paper which showed all six wiring systems and telling what each wire does.
I was on the right track when I tried to do it with my test light.
We left Carlsbad at 11:45 AM with the car in tow.
Going up the mountains was no problem. The engine had plenty of power.
I did not feel very good though. The back of the motorhome is very low. I had transferred the skid wheels from the old motorhome to this one, and they are not very far from the ground.
The skid wheels are needed to keep the back of the motorhome from sliding on the driveway when backing up.
The street is lower than the driveway.
The fresh water tank is located all the way back and it is full. But that should not make that much of a difference. It is something to worry about though. Before I have the leveling jacks installed that has to be fixed. .
Talking about leveling, William Heise County Park is a beautiful park but the concrete pads for parking the trailers and motorhomes are not level. I had some wood and plastic leveling pads with me. It was not enough. We were lucky that somebody left some pieces of boards at the fire pit.

I had to turn the motorhome around though, less wood is required for the two front tires than the four in the back.
We had Happy Hour at 5:00 PM. What we call heavy hors d’oeuvres were served. Everybody brought some finger food.
We sat around the camp fire, ate our food and watched the wild turkeys walking by. There were some mothers with their chicks. The babies are cute.
We went to bed early, both of us were tired.

We did not sleep to well. I had eaten too much.
The bed is very comfortable. After sleeping in my own bed I have to get used to having somebody beside me.
This motorhome has a queen size bed.
It was 50 degrees F when I woke up. This gave me a chance to check out the furnace. It works very good.

The wild turkeys were wandering about again. Before I found my camera they had disappeared in the bushes.
During the day we did not do much. It was sunny and sweat shirt weather. Most of the group had gone for a hike in the morning. We sat around the camp fire for a while and talked. I prepared a broccoli salad for tomorrow’s dinner.
Everybody came over to our motorhome to inspect it. This is a good time to get ideas for doing things around our new little house on wheels. All the men agreed that the rig is too low in the back.
I turned on the water heater and we tried out the shower. We like the shower head and the flexible hose in the old motorhome better. That has to be exchanged too.
Happy Hour and our monthly club meeting was at 4:00 PM. At 5:00 PM we ate chilli and all kind of salads.
After dinner we had another camp fire. Since we are 16 people, one can not get very close to the fire and I got cold. Doreen was sitting at the good side and she was warm. We left early and I warmed up with a hot chocolate. The rest of the evening I spent reading the manuals for the motorhome and the appliances, very exciting reading. Doreen was knitting.

We woke up when large drops of water were hitting the roof of the motorhome. There was a light rain and the water collected on the tree above the motorhome, and when they drops got heavy they bombarded us.
It is unusual cool for June and not normal to have rain.
At about 10:00 AM we left for Julian. It was foggy and we had to take our time.
We went to several antique stores, where we met some of our camping buddies. As soon as we came back to the park we took a nap.
In the afternoon it cleared up and the sun tried to come out. Dinner was canceled though. Some of the group went back to Julian for dinner.
Everybody came to the campfire. Julian Pie and ice cream was served.

We woke up during the night. Some animal was chewing on the motorhome. I went out with a flashlight, froze my buns off, but could not see the critter.
As soon as I was in my warm bed the noise started again. I went out again, with the same result.
In the morning I looked for damaged wires, but could not find any damage.
After breakfast we got ready for the trip home.
This was a wonderful outing, even with the bad weather on Wednesday.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Now I have two motorhomes.

Friday we picked up the new motorhome.
The electrical connection from motorhome to car is different and Doreen had to drive the car home. The car has a four wire set up and the motorhome seven wires.
The colors are different too.
When we left Carona and went on I-15 I had a funny feeling. There seemed to be something wrong with the steering.
Since I was nervous driving a bigger motorhome I did not pay attention to the wind.
Finally it dawned on me that it was windy and I got the wind from the side.
Saturday we worked all day moving stuff from the Tioga Arrow to the Coachmen.
Today we brought the new motorhome to the house and worked some more.
Tomorrow we will be leaving for Julian. We will be up there for three days with the Convair Camping Club.
When we come back I have the leveling system removed from the old motorhome and installed on the new one. In the back two new higher capacity jacks are required.
I have to remove the solar panels and put them on the Coachmen.
I will do the same with the two three speed fans I have in the Tioga Arrow.
I have a feeling I will not get much for the old bugger. It is a shame, it runs good, there are only 1000 miles on the new tires, and the refrigerator is only eleven months old.
We will see.

Monday, June 1, 2009

New Motorhome

Last Thursday we went to the RV Sales Event at the Qualcom Stadium.
We only wanted to look, but got interested in a 2003, 30 foot, Class A, Coachman Motorhome.
I started to deal with the sales person. He said he had a potential buyer and did not come my way.
So I went back yesterday, Sunday, the last day of the event.
The rig was still there, his buyer had financing problems. So I started dealing again.
After we were through, I was $500.00 over what I wanted to pay, not bad.
First we talked about trading in my Tioga Arrow. I am better off keeping it and stripping it of the expensive items. Right now I am talking to San Diego Trailer Supply, the people who installed the HWH Hydraulic Leveling System on my old motorhome. If it is feasible I will take the parts off and have them installed on the new motorhome.
Unfortunately the refrigerator in the new motorhome is nine inches higher than the one in the old one. Too bad, the fridge in the old motorhome is only, eleven months old.
I was too nervous to think about taking a picture of the new motorhome. I did not take possession of it, because the awning mechanism did not work. The shower door needs some attention and at the back of the unit a piece of fiber glass is loose.
They had to take the motorhome back to Corona to make the repairs.
We might be able to go there on Friday and pick it up.
Monday we start an outing with the Convair Camping Club. We will be going to Julian,an old mining town in our local mountains. Now they are known for their apple pies.
I do not know whether I dare to go with the new motorhome. My old motorhome I know inside out. This one is completely different, a lot more switches and levers.
When we come back from Julian I have to transfer the solar panels from the old rig to the new one. The four house batteries have to be put in one of the basement compartments.
We have a lot of room in our new house on wheels. Doreen loves the bedroom with the large closets. The toilet has plenty of cabinet space and the kitchen has straight in storage under the sink, not a corner where you can not see what is in the back.
Between kitchen and bedroom is a large closet, Doreen has her eyes on that one too.
I am happy with the basement storage facilities, In the back is one large storage area, going all the way from one side to the other. There are doors on both sides.
I wish I had not bought new tires on the old motorhome two months ago. They are too small to fit on the new one.
It sometimes happens, when I buy new tires for a car, I get a new one.
The new motorhome has 22,000 miles on the road, about 100,000 miles less than my old one.