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Truck Maintenance

December 16th, 2007

Today was a work day as we try and get the truck ready for a trip to North Carolina over the Christmas holidays. We were hoping to change the air filter, fuel filter, oil, the front brakes and add a set of timbrens.

We managed to get everything except the brakes done today. Thankfully, the rain held off, but it should come in full force tonight. We’re hoping it will be over by tomorrow and we can get the brakes done as well.

There was some mild excitement during the proceedings. Mostly, myself cursing the engineer that decided to use fine threaded bolts in the timbrens as I tried to get them to line up without being able to see them. The other exciting bit involved screwing the fuel filter cap down too tightly, which caused the gasket to bunch up and allow diesel fuel to spray out. It was a very fine stream, but between the wind and the spray, it covered the entire front half of the truck.

The effects of today’s maintenance are already pretty obvious. We took the truck for a 20 mile drive with the camper on the back. There’s still a bit of leaning in corners, but since the overloads are engaging more readily, the truck doesn’t rock back and forth as it rights itself. The ride is considerably better. We are getting about a half mile per gallon better fuel economy. I think we’ll need to take a bit longer trip to get good numbers, but I think we might be almost 10% more fuel efficient as long as I don’t let lead foot behind the wheel.

Since we didn’t think the campground would appreciate us doing too much work on the truck, we’re parked in Jenn’s sister’s driveway. Hopefully the weather will cooperate tomorrow and we can get the front brakes upgraded.

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