Well we finally got on the road after 18 months of waiting to finish the painting of our home! Our 1992 Tour master now looks like a brand new coach....on the outside!
We headed out on Thursday the 16th of May. The first day I noticed that the refrigerator which was running on the gas had shut down. I went to the outside access panel and preceded to tighten and check all the electrical connections. I reset the switch inside and all seemed to be working as required. We stopped in Cornwall Ontario and stayed the night aw Walmart. The next day we were awake early and headed for our destination hoping to get through Toronto before the Friday traffic rushing north to the cottages! About 15 minutes north of Kingston my wife who had been trying to rest in the back came forward and told me that she felt like something wasn't right and wanted to sit up front with me.
Five minutes later it happened. The front left tire decided it was time to blow
! The first thing I felt was the tread come off and Slap in the wheel well a few times. I got a good grip on the steering wheel and then the tire blew with a loud boom!!! I pumped the brakes and and got the vehicle from 110kmh to 0 in record time. Now sitting dead on the side of the road i jumped out to verify the damage. Fortunately the fender and outer body had not been damaged...oooof! I did see that a number of electrical wires were ripped off and also a steel cable of some type. I call a shop and had a mobile unit bring a new tire and rim just in case it was damaged. I used the jacks to lift the coach while I was waiting for them to arrive. The technician arrive with the necessary material and checked what needed to be done. Fortunately the tire had flattened under the rim and kept it from damaging so only a new tire was required. Once the tire was remove I proceeded to verify what exactly was damaged. The electrical bay inner panel had been smashed in, a 6 inch steel cross member 1/8th of an inch thick had been bent to a 45 degree angle, Lighting for the side turn signals and the drivers electric seat had been ripped off, my windsield washer reservoir was gone, the mud flap was gone and worse was the shifter cable had been ripped out off!!! It just about took the whole shifter arm with it! Now I was stuck on the side of the road engine off and the transmission in in drive. I quickly removed the side dash and shifter arm and once the tire was repaired I asked the guy that came to pass the shifter cable back up through the floor to me. I grabbed a pair of vice grip and clamped the end of the cable and proceeded to play until I found neutral. One I got this right finding drive and revers was easy so we proceeded to complete or run to destination.
The next day I carried out the necessary repairs to the electrical issues so all the lights and drivers seat were working. I managed to get an appointment with a company about 30 minutes away who said they could fix my shifter cable. On Tuesday morning we set out to Barrie for the first appointment of the morning. The company's name is Simco Truck and Trailer...remember this name and never go there! When we arrived for our appointment I got the appropriate paper work done inside and asked the mechanic to check an ail leak on the engine along with fixing the cable and also mentioned I could hear a noise of some kind from the engine I wanted him to check out. I had not seen the owner but since all the necessary information had be given to them the wife and I set off to blow some time shopping as we waited.
Around 11:30am we returned to the shop found the rv parked outside with no work being done. I went inside and saw the owner and asked if he had fixed the cable. He told me it was a custom cable which had to be replaced. I had specifically explained what was wrong prior to leaving the rv and the only reason I had gone to see him was because he had told me he was able to repair the end! He asked me what I wanted to do and knowing that it would take to long to get the new cable I told him since he was unable to repair the existing cable I would leave it at that. He told me to go up front to pay...50.00 minimum fee. As I headed for the office i crossed the mechanic and asked if any work at all had been done to the rv. The owner of the shop snapped at me to leave the mechanic alone and that he was busy. I told the owner that he was very impolite and that I would be mentioning to other RVers to stay clear of his company. So they had done no work and it was costing me 50$ to have him tell me he couldn't fix the cable after telling me he could on the phone. I paid the 50$, expressed my discontentment to the secretary and left.
When I got into the rv I noticed that the cable end was missing and had to return to the shop to retrieve it. When I went in I asked the boss if he had the cable end and he said yes but prior to giving it to me radioed the front desk to see if I had paid. When payment was confirmed he gave me the part and said goodbye with a very ignorant tone. I replied good riddance to which he replied another ignorant reply so I told to go [moderator edit] himself. I'm normally very polite but this guy was a real jerk.
Driving back to my parents house we hit a storm and had to pull off the road. Rain, hail and wind! Pulled off to wait it our with a few other cars. The ones ahead of me left earlier than I did so I pulled up under an overpass. We found out the next day that we were actually just on the edge of a tornado that passed just in front of us!! Lucky we pulled off.
The refrigerator went off a few more times, but I couldn't locate a problem so I decided just to keep my eye on it and reset it as required!
Friday we left for Stoney Creek to visit my sister. Half way there we stopped to have lunch. The restaurant was closed so we had to go to another location. When I tried to restart the vehicle it would turn over but not start......[moderator edit]!!
I got my coveralls on and slid into the motor compartment. I was pretty sure it just had to do with the fuel solenoid not activating and low and behold I found a broken ground. A five minute fix and we were back on the road.
Sunday we headed for the states. The customs agent we had crossing must of been having a bad day because he really tried to give us a hard time. He made us pull over for inspection but fortunately the two other agents were much more polite and were got through customs without much trouble.
So Tuesday were parked in Rochester NY and the fridge stopped working again! I removed the burner cover which I found full of rust flakes and other [moderator edit] which I vacuumed out and got it going again! Then the weather got crappy and rain moved in. They were calling for thunder storms so my wife an I bought a dvd at Walmart and settled in for the evening. About 21:00 my wife asked me to mute the film and guess what.....we found water flowing into the rv close to the entry door. A six inch diameter bowl filled 1 inch in thirty seconds. All our towels were of the closet and on the floor as we tried to control the flow!!! We almost got no sleep all night as the thunder storms came and went. Into Walmart at dawn. Bought a ladder and tried to find out where it was coming in. I was pretty sure I had fixed the leaking but we finally decided just to drive home asap and minimize any other problems.
Just to put a cherry on the Sunday the toilet seat hinge broke on the way back!
If this had been my first rv experience it would have been my last. This is where you realize that if you have no technical abilities you better have a thick wallet.
The rv will be in the shop tomorrow. I'm having a new cable made and installed for the shifter, and the oil leak will also be addressed. Then a new front left tire to match the one on the other side. I will keep the old one as a spare. Then the height of the suspension will be brought back to factory specs and I'll have the front end aligned.
Hopefully my next trip will go better.