Saturday, March 20, 2010

When will I be done?

I will be done when I am finished, that is when. And why I say that, I will explain.

I have certain superstitions that effect me. For instance, I never put away a tool until the job is done. As soon as I put it away, I will need it. Keeping it out and ready usually assures I will not need it. Another superstition is to never say it is done until I am sure it really is. I broke that rule by calling Lu Lu done in a previous post. I hooked her up and got ready to tow her over to the yard so I can get working on my next job. I pulled out on the street and stopped to check the lights. NO LIGHTS. NO BRAKES. NO NOTHING. What does one do? Well, I tried wiggling the plug, for it must not be making good contact with the pins. By doing this I was able to get the green light to light up on the brake controller. Yeah, success! But when I put on the signals the brake controller flashed red. When the brake are applied... RED. The controller owners manual says, "open ground" I wiggle again and feel a distinct "POP".

By inspecting the connector I notice that the screw that clamps down on the cable is gone allowing the cord to spin around in the connector. The set screw that holds it together is also screwed in so far that no threads are actually holding in the main body of the connector either. I open it up to find...

that a great deal of water has been having a good old time with the brass and copper in the plug.

But this is the shocking part... literally. The white wire is loose and with just a little flex of the cord, it is touching the black. No wonder I blew a fuse, everyone knows to never touch a white wire to a black one. A run over to the RV store, a little rewiring, and we are back in business. A side note: Not all seven pins are wired the same. Some are set up differently than the standard pattern. Put it back the way you found it, unless you want to rewire the tow vehicle too.

So, Lu Lu is most likely done now. She is over at the storage yard and her owners will be down next week to pick her up. They will be doing some polishing, some seam sealing, and some much needed window reglazing. I am very happy with how I made that giant rip in the skin go away.

This brings me to another delay in getting her done. A number of you read my other blog. Some might remember a year ago when I got some metal stuck in my eye. I had to have it removed surgically. Ringing any bells? Well, the next trailer, and the one after that need new axles.

In order to order axles one needs some very important measurements (unless you go the route we ended up going, but more on that later). One needs frame rail to frame rail dimension and the distance from hub face to hub face. To obtain these measurements you need to jack the trailer up and remove one of the wheels. While crawling under to measure frame rail to frame rail my shoulder brushed the frame. Some of that rust on the frame rubbed off and fell right between my safety glasses and my eye. I flushed my eyes out right away and went back to work. However, while driving home I could feel a burning in my eye. Sure enough, I had another piece of metal stuck in my eye ball. If this ever happens to you, make sure to seek treatment right away. The eye contains proteins and enzymes that oxidize metal very quickly. Removing the object is easy but the rust left behind requires surgery. Having been through it twice now, I can tell you it is no fun having your eye drilled to remove the rust. Three days later it still feels very uncomfortable and the sensitivity to sun light is extreme.
WEAR THOSE DAMN SAFETY GLASSES(even if they fail to protect your eyes some times)

But with all of that said... NEXT!!!!!
Folks this is my next project. You are looking at a very well cared for 1977 Argosy Minuet. She is 20 feet long and in very nice shape. There is no structural work slated for this project however I will be peeking in and making sure everything is looking alright. The scope of work includes a new axle, fantastic fan, new cat heater, flooring installed, and a number of little projects if time and budget permit. Her owners are very nice people that are very proud of their new Airstream. They are excited to get her out and do some serious camping this season.


  1. Marc (3ms75argosy)March 21, 2010 at 9:44 AM

    Bleh! I have a really sexy pic of me somewhere with my my safety goggles on! I learned after your post a year ago. Thanks for the reminder! I'm curious about the next axle post.. can't wait. Marc

  2. Frank, how's the eye doing now? Hope it's all better. - elly

  3. Hope your eye is recovering well. I recognize that Mini!!! Looking forward to axles info.

    Really looking forward to seeing you in a few days.