Friday, May 1, 2009

Friday, May,1.

It has been overcast all day but warm, probably in the high 70’s. We are supposed to get rain tonight and tomorrow, so we have everything disconnected except the electricity, so we won’t have to mess with it in the morning if it is raining. The jeep is also hooked up.
Ok, There are some things that I have to get cleared up before I go any further.
Remember the twin Rocks that I called the “Two Navajos’? Then I decided that they were actually “The Twin Rocks”? I found out today, that I was half right both times. They are actually called “The Navajo Twins”.
I forgot to mention yesterday, that when we got home from our ride and walked into the RV, the bathroom, hall and the bedroom rug were flooded. Fortunately it wasn’t sewer water. It was fresh water from a leak where the water goes into the back of the toilet. I was able to tighten the fitting a little but water still dripped in the back. Then I thought that maybe the pressure from the hydrant was too high so I put on the pressure reducer that I carry for such situations, in hopes that that would take care of the problem. It did stop the leaking but unfortunately, it reduces the pressure so much that water just dribbles out of the shower head. The pump for our on board water system has more pressure. This morning I tightened the fitting some more and it turned just a little so I eliminated the reducer. No more leak! Then I decided to dump the black tank. After dumping the black tank you have to put water back in it. I normally do that by running the toilet for a while. When the black tank reached ¼ full I shut off the water. Then I checked to see if the line was leaking. It was, so I reinstalled the reducer but now it still leaks a little. For now we are going to use our onboard water system and just turn the pump off when we are not running water, which is our normal operation when we use that system. I will have to take the toilet apart to see what is leaking and ether repair it or replace the toilet.
Also the faucet for the shower/tub is not working properly so until we get that fixed we will have to use the RV Park showers. I hate using public showers so I will fix that as soon as I can get the parts. I am hoping that there is an RV parts place in Moab. If not, I can order a new faucet on line from “Camping World”.

When we were in Quartzsite I noticed some strange noises coming from under the jeep. I checked the “U” joint’s and they all seemed tight. On our last outing there, where we drove 14 miles down “Tyson Wash” I worked the jeep pretty hard and after that I noticed a strange vibration. It appeared to happen only between 25 and 35 miles per hour and only in first, second and third gear. I thought that maybe I had done something to the transmission. But I checked the “U” joints any way and they seemed tight. As time went on the vibration began occurring at higher speeds and in all gears. I was getting pretty worried that the transmission was going to fail and we hadn’t even gotten to Moab yet. When we got to Las Cruces, NM, I had the Big “O” tire store rotate the tires and I asked the guy to take a look at the “U” joints. He said that he checked them and they were fine.
After towing the jeep all across New Mexico the vibration seemed to have cleared up.
Yesterday when we were way back in the mountains I could hear a “squeak, squeak, squeak” sound when I would start the jeep moving, and on the way home the vibration came back with a vengeance.
This morning I once again crawled under Clifford and grabbed the drive shaft and shook it. This time it was obvious that the rear “U” joint was trashed. It moved about a quarter of an inch back and forth.
I went to the RV park office to see if it was ok for me to work on the Jeep and they said that as long as I didn’t leave a big oily mess that it would be fine.
I carefully and slowly drove Clifford into town to the Napa store and bought the new “U” joint, a grease gun with grease, a needle tip adaptor and a large “C” clamp.
I came home, removed the drive shaft and began the process of removing the bad “U” joint.
It became a great struggle. Usually I have been able to press the joint off with a “C” clamp and a large socket but this time it wouldn’t work. I guess I could have pounded it out with a big hammer but right across the street from the RV park is a Auto repair shop. I carried the drive shaft over there and asked them if they would press the old joint off and install the new one, They said that they could and to come back in about 45 minutes. I went back in an hour and it was all done and they only charged me $15.00. I was happily shocked. I walked back across the street and installed the driveshaft in about 10 minutes including greasing the front joint. I took Clifford for a test ride and it ran as smooth as a babies ass.

All this time Patti was doing the laundry. When she was finished with that we took off for “The Valley of the Gods” It was a beautiful ride.
On the way we stopped for lunch at “The Twin Rocks Café” and this time we split a Navajo Burger. It was still plenty of food.

Ok, here are the pictures.

The small white spot is a very large truck coming down the “Switch Backs” very slowly.

We entered the V.O.G from the west side.

Another of Patti’s wildlife pictures.

Here were a couple of guys painting right next to the dirt road. I don’t know how they handled the dust of passing cars. I guess the dust just add to the texture of the paintings. We passed them very slowly so as to not raise any dust but I know that not everyone was so thoughtful.

Patti thought that this formation looked like a mountain man but I thought it looked more like “Homer Simpson”.

Ok, That’s probably enough pictures.

We had a great ride and the Jeep is running smooth again so now I don’t have to worry about it.

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