Wish Me Luck

Hey, I made it halfway to Arizona! The solar system just wanted sun so badly I decided to not head for the ocean first. So far, my truck had a minor breakdown with a $55 bill….and an $850 tow. Wiped out my emergency fund right there, but that’s what it was for, eh? At least my truck is healthy again. Had to get some kinks out of it’s system I guess! The fix was so minor, it was laughable. All the mechanic did was bypass the water extraction thingie and replace it with a bent metal tube. Ah, to know engines….

That was in the Modoc National Forest, in California. The next evening I made it to Reno where I met up with a trucker friend at the Sparks Petro truck stop. Seeing a friend so far from home was great (and weird)! He turned back north and home this morning. But maybe half of the 700 or so drivers here couldn’t go on with their travels due to Interstate 80 closures and chain requirements. That includes little ol’ me. My friend said to me when I asked his opinion about chaining up and going for it, “chains are for getting out of trouble, not going toward it”. Made sense to me!

So here I am, at a huge truck stop in Sparks, Nv. Could be worse; free cable in the tv room, pay showers, laundry facilities, and a safe place to sleep. I’ve made some acquaintances, which is rare for me, so there’s company if I want it. Much nicer than being stranded at the side of the road on a lonely highway, that’s for sure!  Thanks for the memories, California!

But I’d like to continue my journey south. Weather patterns are looking bad through the weekend, so I might be stuck here for days. Please, think thoughts of clear, warm days here for me, and all the other drivers trapped here. 😀 We’d appreciate it.

10 thoughts on “Wish Me Luck

  1. “Water extractor?” You don’t have air brakes, right? So, is this the fuel filter? Cuz if so, that’s crucial, not something to be bypassed. On the other hand, it’s easy to fix if you carry a filter wrench and a spare…

  2. Just a shame they didn’t fix it at the roadside, but then you can spend as much time as money on ‘if only’ You are moving again, well kind of, so that’s a main thing 🙂
    Good luck!

  3. If you have the old 7.3L, your description makes me wonder if the lever to drain water out of the filter was snapped off or something, so he bypassed it just to get you rolling. Whatever the situation, if he left you with “You’ll need to…”, something to do with the water extractor or fuel filter, you may need to eat beans and rice for awhile until it’s put right, for the sake of the fuel injectors farther down the line. It’s a respect thing. 🙂

    To try to side-step brutal towing costs, I went with https://coach-net.com/ and have been pleased because they have treated me like a customer when I called, rather than as a consumer. The signup is online, and it is actually a bit less expensive and more comprehensive than my car insurance’s towing add-on. As with nearly all such services, you need to be within 300′ of a “maintained road” to get service, which is rarely an issue when you’re trying to get to Point B.

    As you seem to be surrounded by higher elevations during a cold snap that’s carrying some snow, staying put does seem like the lesser evil, doesn’t it? You certainly could have picked worse places to get trapped! Hang in there and stay warm!

  4. Hi Doug,
    I have the 6.9l engine. The mechanic called the water extractor. “Just bad engineering” and told me he’d never seen it still hooked up. The truck is running well for now, but having the fuel system checked out again is on the list.
    I was able to leave the next morning along with most of the semi’s, and though I had to drive for couple hours through some heavy snow and omg ice, the truck handled it well. I’m comfortable driving in those conditions, which helps. Really, the worst thing is sudden wind gusts.
    I’ll try coachnet and see if they will give me coverage. I’m willing to anti-up for towing insurance if I can find a company willing to give it.

  5. Parker I live in Arizona. Where are you headed? I am in Scottsdale but I know there are a lot of RV places in Mesa and Apache Junction but you have to choose one that is in a safe neighborhood. You have my private email if you want to email me to ask questions. How long is your rig? I am not sure if it would fit in one of my side yards or not. I wish you well.

  6. Hi Diane 😀,
    I am fairly open as to where I stay, other than needing sun and pretty good access since the little house is so tall I still worry a little about it being tippy. After time spent behind the wheel, I now know it’s more stable than that but my brain is still stuck in worry mode.

    I’m heading towards BLM lands to save money, like Quartszite, Ehrenberg and Yuma, for as long as it’s not too hot for my cat, then I’m not sure. I’d like to visit your place! This is where you built those pretty homes, yes? The total length of my rig is somewhere around 25 ft, probably less actually.

    I had forgotten you are in Arizona. How great! Once I have some stuff figured out I will email you. ☺

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