Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Travel Day, Kalamazoo MI

Tuesday morning we did our usual routine and started packing things up around 9:00am. I had done a lot of the outside work the night before and all I needed to do was to unplug the utilities and load up the elliptical.

After getting things inside ready we were ready to hitch the truck up. I got the truck backed up to the king pin and Max raised the RV front nose gear all the way up. Uh OH! The RV had settled down quite a bit at the front and the RV was not as high as I would have liked to get the hitch hitched. I want it as level to each other as possible. The truck hitch was about 2 inches higher than the RV hitch pin.

Now I was wondering what to do. I remembered reading on some of the RV message boards that a lot of guys will have the RV a little lower than the truck hitch and let the RV “ramp up” onto the truck hitch. The truck hitched looked like it was at a good angle to ramp up so I decided I did not have much choice. I moved the truck backwards a little and watched the truck bed sag with the weight of the RV and the RV kingpin ramped up and locked into place. Whew!

Lesson No1. Put more blocks under the front landing gear to make sure I can get the RV high enough.

We got hitched up and  had to pull out far enough past the utility hook up post to get the elliptical loaded up. I had already loaded the bicycles up onto the ladder rack and we have not attempted to load the elliptical with the bikes. We had to remove the front tire on one of the bikes to get the elliptical arm to clear. It had to rest in between the front forks of the bike. We were able to get it strapped down okay but we could not use the cover. We are going to have to try different positions of the bikes to see if we can come up with a solution. 

We finally got pulled out of the campsite and stopped at the office. We wanted to request a different site for the final 2 weeks we will be there. We do not want to try to get it back into that site again. The owners had no problems with that and have us a site we can use when we return in a week.

As we started to pull out of the campground I had to stop. There was a box turtle crossing in front of the campground entrance, so i got out and helped him along. I got back into the truck and made the right hand turn out of the driveway and abruptly came to a fast stop. The RV brakes locked up and I had a trailer brake fault warning on the dash in the truck. Sheesh! now what? I got out and looked at my wiring and noticed that the right hand turn caused me to pull the emergency brake tether cable from the RV, causing the brakes to engage. I got the tether plugged back in and unplugged and re plugged back in the trailer plug to reset any warnings in the truck. Problem solved.

We left the campground with me in front with the RV and Maxine riding the goldwing and pulling the cargo trailer. We went the two mile to highway 24 and headed north towards 69 highway in Ft. Wayne. We just got pulled out onto 24 highway and Maxine called over on the CB that she had a rear tire locking up. I was a little ways up ahead and had to find a place to pull over. I found a vacant lot and did not see Maxine in sight. I started walking back towards her and she was parked off the highway in a strip mall parking lot. She told me that the cargo trailer tire squealing and then locked up. She had to drag it over to the parking lot to get into a safe location. Good thing she is an excellent rider and handled the situation perfectly. It looks like the wheel bearing locked up so we unhooked the trailer from the bike and called my son to bring his truck. Luckily he was off work and only lived about two miles from where we were. Mike came and we loaded up the trailer in his truck and took it to his garage. I will have to replace the bearings when we get back from Kalamazoo. I am just glad that it happed so close to home and before we headed to South Dakota.

We finally made it to Kalamazoo around 5:00pm and picked out a spot. We got set up and unloaded the bikes. It was very hot and we were pretty tired. Luckily we have 50 amps and we are able to turn on both A/C units. That made a big difference in cooling down the rig. We will be here for about a week then we have an appointment to have some things on the RV serviced on the 14th.

Here we are finally set up. This is not the best campground for a scenic view but we are close to the Kal-Haven bike trail and they have a nice pool.


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