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Old 01-30-2019, 08:49 PM   #21
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Will you be returning to State College? I am from Lewistown. I did not realise another bus fan lived so close.
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Old 01-30-2019, 09:26 PM   #22
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Thanks all for the congrats on our ham tech license. Steve, I might continue for general. It was kind of cool to go back to " school" after 30 years and pass an exam. May be I am getting my second wind.


First a roof picture of skoolie palooza.

Second of our youngest turning seven and found a "hidden" present in Dory's mouth.


Today was a wild day. We wanted to bike to a yellow water tank that was visible against the mountain. It was a rocky trip. We stopped every 10 minutes to let the dog drink. Did not look that far but it was still 5 miles one way and it was neat of road biking.

Rosie and we all were happy to be back without flats or injury.

After that we packed up we left for Yuma . 20 miles on az95 we hear a loud bang and indeed a tire had come of.

Took out quit a bit of metal and fender. It turned out that in the hurry to get on the road I had taken the key out of the contact and at the first curve the front wheels locked under an angle. 20 miles later the passenger side exploded. The driver was badly damaged. Had to use the angle grinder to cut sections of metal out of the way to get the spare to run freely.

In Yuma we found a Sams and replaced both the front tires. $125. They had 8d batteries for $199 as well. Decided to do both. The old ones tested good but somehow they did not accept charge very well. Will see if the new ones make a difference.

Anyhow it was an expensive day that could have gone a lot worse. Lessons were taught. Now see if we learned something.

Yes we plan to come back to state college.
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Old 01-31-2019, 11:35 PM   #23
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We overnighted at the Wally in Yuma. Next day we drove to a goodwill and I noticed a check engine light and fan roar with a lot of dust back of the bus.
The rest of the day I have been busy with trouble shooting why the hydraulic fan stays on full power.
Wonder if this happened after we changed batteries at Sams club . with the batteries disconnected their was a spark from residual charge in the bus ( inverters) when the battery cable terminal touched each other or ground.

The hydraulic fan valve is a danfoss 11163006. It has an onboard computer for can bus. It is driven in pwm mode and without signal or when disconnected it turns the fan in full on.

How harmful is it to drive with the hydraulic fan in full on mode?
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Old 02-01-2019, 10:19 PM   #24
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Thumbs down

Today was spend trying to determine what all is damaged and how. My scan gauge gave me two error codes but they did make no sense. Called five " self respecting" diesel shops but none of them had guts to even diagnose with a code scanner. Finally we found a small shop dealing with random stuff and tractors. He had a Mercedes scanner and found the fault code. After that we were able to change the fault code from open wire to shorted output by you guessed it " shorting the wire" Found another hydraulic valve on fleabay and had it shipped to Ajo Post office in arizona. Tomorrow I will do one more test with a dummy load to see if I can trick the ecu in thinking all is OK. Fingers crossed.

The pony engine is a one cyl. 5 HP robin diesel. It is installed but not hooked up yet.

Here some more pics.

Leena filling up the fresh water tank with recycled jugs filled with gas station outdoor water. We do not drink or cook with this water. Me " dying of thirst" at an empty water tank in an abandoned development. A tired me seeing the destruction ad a result of my carelessness. And me under Dory to get to the fan drive control valve.
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Old 02-03-2019, 07:40 PM   #25
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Yesterday we moved from Yuma to gila bend. The last thing we did was driving thru the Yuma historic downtown and visiting the federal historic prison. After that we took I8 direction east. We had a nice time driving along a freight train. After honking a couple of times and our girls waving to the engineer we had a cool honking / waving game going on with the 6998.

There is a huge linear parabolic reflector steam turbine electric power plant along I8 just before gila. Would have been nice to tour that but it does not seem to have a visitor center.

We "camped" in Gila Bend. Took on fresh water. Showered.. In the morning we helped a woman from north or south carolina with a pickup truck and travel trailer. The battery in her trailer was not charging from the truck. Turned out the battery insulator relay was not installed. I had one with me and all turned out well.

We had breakfast in a space age restaurant. Looked cool but marginal on all other accounts.

Then we drove thru Ajo to organ pipe national monument.
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Old 02-03-2019, 07:59 PM   #26
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Does your Gillig have a Benz in it?
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Old 02-03-2019, 08:47 PM   #27
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Hi Charlie. This no gillig but an slf200. Euro designed and then manufactured in the USA.

The engine is Benz. An mbe906 with an Allison b300r transmission. Pretty complicated with multiplex system and so on. Probably more then most people would want to touch. 425000 miles . Uses or leaks no oil. I like Mercedes diesels but then we drive W123 wagon, W124 wagon., G wagon and a Unimog. So I am slightly biased.
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Old 02-03-2019, 08:55 PM   #28
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Oh I have had a few 123's, my 77 240D was my favorite.
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Old 02-03-2019, 09:11 PM   #29
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Haha. Ronnie. I figured we would have more in common then steam. Yeah the 240 manual are the most fun. I agree. It requires ones full attention for opportunity, rpm, gear and let's not forget momentum to move thru traffic. Very satisfying.
I put a 240d manual in the w123 wagon we have.
I have a 5spd manual for the w123. May be one day?..
Later Johan
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Old 02-04-2019, 06:14 AM   #30
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I did get bumped a time or two in the rear at traffic lights for not getting going fast enough. Did fix that though, added a turbo, and retuned the IP. It would outrun my 300d then. Also g forces in hard turns, like mountain roads would cause it to loose oil pressure. Wide tires and sport shocks plus a bit lowered gave great handling. Fun car but yes full attention all the time.

Maybe meet up at the railroad sometime, it is about half way between us near Frederick MD. I am there most weekends
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Old 02-04-2019, 07:18 AM   #31
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I love organ pipe!!! been since a kid that I was there!!! an awesome place to see esp this time of year!!



-Christopher
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Old 02-05-2019, 12:17 PM   #32
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Sure is nice here. Here a pic from the concentrating solar along I8.

Interesting RV ...vixen.

We did a 20 mile dirt road drive in the monument and some hiking. In the evening the rangers organized a star party. We brought a telescope along but their stuff was nice.

Today we are going go to see the pupfish .
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Old 02-07-2019, 08:57 PM   #33
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Yesterday my last post got lost so here the do over.

Our third day in organ pipe cactus was spend driving to quitobaquito . a spring with pond 100 yards from the Mexican border. Pupfish is the aniumal that swims in this protected environment.
The mexican border is kind of in the news and so it was a little exciting to take the jeep on the washboard road along the Mexican border.
I will upload some pics when I have better signal.
Later j
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Old 02-07-2019, 09:04 PM   #34
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Yesterday my last post got lost so here the do over.

Our third day in organ pipe cactus was spend driving to quitobaquito . a spring with pond 100 yards from the Mexican border. Pupfish is the aniumal that swims in this protected environment.
The mexican border is kind of in the news and so it was a little exciting to take the jeep on the washboard road along the Mexican border.
I will upload some pics when I have better signal.
Later j
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Old 02-08-2019, 10:39 PM   #35
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Pics. Of our last hikes.
Next day spend another $20... we stayed down at the campground..the kids had found another kid to play with. Kids are pretty rare and they need their social outlets to.
Next day we left for Ajo to pick up the hydraulic valve and re-supply. Cute town. In the afternoon we drove 3 mile south of ajo and found a nice spot on blm land.
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Old 02-09-2019, 10:59 PM   #36
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So I checked out my new fdca. ...fan drive control assembly. To be honest I gave up hope after I tested the pwm signal coming from the ecm with a variable resistor to see if I could trick the ecu in giving a non error code. With the variable resistor I was able to go from an open circuit code to a shorted circuit code by varying the resistance. But... Not in turning the code off. So I assumed I had a damaged ecm. Any how after replacing the electronic module on the valve .....the light went out..... Amazing. ...still do not understand the principle of fault code generation for an open to shorted circuit on a pwm output. ...Chris any input?.

Yesterday we spend the day at camp relaxing... Making fire..cooking...
Today we went to Ajo. We just hit the jackpot... Nice breakfast at the coop. Then farmers market with good produce. Then a non profit swap meet to improve the town...we checked out the open mine pit and went to the all volunteer history of ajo museum ( essential mine museum) very interesting and fun. Went back to Dory south of town for lunch and then back to the library. Gave the kids some study time for schoolwork.. In the evening we cooked soup on the campfire.
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Old 02-11-2019, 07:55 PM   #37
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Sunday morning another breakfast in Ajo. after that we dirtroaded with the jeep around the mine and with some creative map interpretation we found Valentine Well. It is almost 14 February after all.

In the afternoon I tried to work some bugs out of the shower. Finally got it working except that the heating element in the shower head was 2700 watt. Our inverter being 2500 watt did not like that and would shut of after 3 min use. So we need a slightly bigger inverter.

Monday morning it was time to leave our wild desert camping spot. Exciting to see that the fleabay hydraulic valve did work correctly and kept the temp below 207F.

On the way to kitt peak observatory . we checked out Sells. Fueled and coffeed up ($2.86/gallon). And crawled up kitt peak mountain. It was a fun climb and we had a nice tour of the 4 meter telescope.
The decent was fun as well. 10 miles at 8% . nice with a retarder. Coolant was at 195F .

We drove on to Tucson and are camping now at blm land at schnyder Hill. Just west of Tucson. ( last pic)
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Old 02-12-2019, 07:15 AM   #38
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Holy moly, what a trip! It just hit me that you started this adventure as a trip to Skoolipalooza, but that was well over a month ago. What are your travel plans and timeline? You're missing a heckuva storm system here in the middle of the country.....I'm a tad jealous, as your'e in the desert and we're suffering an ice storm!
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Old 02-12-2019, 11:08 AM   #39
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Thanks Drew. I have crossed the USA several times but never without time restriction as now. I never thought that I would Not be bored camping 4 days in the middle of nowhere. We are amazed how well this lifestyle fits us.

Sorry did not want to gloat. Sorry about the weather. Dreadful.

This morning here in Tucson I noticed a little ice on a puddle. The plan is to do some shopping and then find a camping spot in the Santa Rita mountains.

From there back to Tucson for the Sonora desert museum, Pima air museum and the minute man missile silo. May be get a feel for the aircraft graveyards.

Later in the week tombstone and bisbee mine museum.

We will go as far east as white sands the turn around west again.

Later Johan
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Old 02-12-2019, 11:23 AM   #40
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Don't know if you can get reservations,but as long as you're down there try to see Karchner caverns
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