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2019/12/10

Heated Hose #2

I installed the second heated hose of the season on my motorhome. The first one didn't turn on.  It wasn't approved for drinking water anyways.  This one is.

I got confused when routing the hose to the appropriate ends, but ended up getting it routed right. The instructions said that the hose can't coil or it might cause problems with its outer shielding. So with it being 50ft long, I had to route it along the back right side of the motorhome, then in front of the drive wheels before I passed it through the bottom to the left side and hooked it up to the city water input.
Just that and insulating it and I feel sore already.

I now have a Pirit Heated Hose Model PWL-03-12-50.  The instructions sheet says that it's not supposed to get hot, but if that's true, it's on the hotter side of warm for sure.  But the water source that I get it from is also electrically heated and maybe that has something to do with it?

2019/10/29

Motorhome Winter Strategies

Unlike last February, I have a spare 30/ 15amp mini tandem breaker on board here in the motorhome.  The Coleman roof top unit is a heater/ air conditioner.  Right now, at 48°F outdoors, I have the heater set at minimum in my 31 year old Itasca Sundancer.  The indoor temperature is reading 66°F.  There is no wind to speak of here.

Last year, I used 14 bales of hay to insulate the outside bottom of my motorhome.  This year, I have some kind of padded material and it's outside is kind of foil like.  I'd even call it "space age?"  But I just now had a thought.  What if inside the shielding, I could stuff the bottom to make it more solid?

What I have coming up is I have to replace the hot water tank.  Then I'll have to search for gas leaks.  I'm certain that there's one at the stove.  In case things go wrong, I need to be able to bypass bad systems, or directly plug them in one at a time.  That could at least entail the installation of a liquid propane coupler from the outside to the in so that something like a 20# tank can remain out.  Of course, a line from the inside port would connect to the hot water heater, stove/ oven or heating systems.

Or could I install shut off valves at each appliance and just use the main input line?  If I did both strategies, I could accommodate a LP heater.  A cylindrical shaped object that costs about $150 present day.

2019/10/28

Why Don't I Hike?

Some might ask me why I don't hike.  With 1200 miles covered on the Buckeye Trail and 2000 career, I like to think that I'm just on "inactive status."  But one more hiker isn't going to amount to a hill of beans in Ohio and West Virginia. 

Right now in Far SE Ohio, I'm having a hard enough time "keeping the lights on." We have an annual maintenance contingent from the BTA's Road Fork/ Whipple Work Week, but it gets there in July and this place needs things to start happening in June for economic reasons.  That needs local volunteerism, which we had in the past warm days, but this area has incurred multiple, successive calamities.  And the best thing that can happen now is that we withdraw and regroup now that we're in the cold ones.

Digital Mapping File

The file for Adventurer's Project's Digital Mapping was 375MB in hard disk size.  In the past, Google Earth crashes when it tries to load a file of about 400MB (give or take a few megabytes).   I know that this is just going to get bigger, so I saved the individual items and folders to the hard disk itself.  It will be much easier on my laptop to work with them that way.

Adventurer's Project's Digital Mapping is slated to work on digital cartography well out side of its region.  One idea that I have is in support of the North Country Trail Association's "End-to-End" program.  I think that a regional+ transit project that would include passenger airports, Greyhound intrastate buses and a few local amenities would suit a trail of 4,800 miles well?

I'm not sure what the output will look like for the end user, but considering that their Avenza and Guthooks (I'm not sure what they use) basemaps are probably not drawn for this, it might end up being written on Adventurer's Project's website?  But to do that, we'll have to pin point where everything is and that takes a map.

2019/10/18

RV Repair Manual Received

My mechanical aptitude is improving.  A lot of times, I don't need a manual to fix something.  Today, I received my RV repair manual from Half Price Books via Amazon.  I'm looking forward to using it when I go after my liquid propane leak in my 1988 Itasca Sundancer 25 foot's stove.  I'm not sponsored by anybody and the only reason why I mention the make and model is for your convenience regarding search engines.

I'm a full timer and I have an idea on how to keep the heat in the winter.  The front cab windows are huge and they bleed heat.  Last year, I draped a tarp from the overhead bunk and that did some good.  But my idea to better it is to cut some 1 inch foam ply insulation.  I'd do the windshield in several pieces.  I can use some light grade canvas from Jo Ann Fabric's and adhere it all together using hot glue.  I used this canvas and hot glue for a modification to my hiking backpack and it held for quite some time.  Anyways, the hot glue will melt the canvas a bit like a weld.

For the cabin windows, it's the separation between the glass pieces that's the problem.  Just use some packing tape on those so that they'll come off easy with a razor blade when spring comes around.

I have full hookups, so last winter, I used my roof heater, which is electric.  That acted like the primary heat and then I used a large electric ceramic heater as my secondary.  But my gas systems are offline right now and last year I had a lengthy power outage.  I live in very rural Woodsfield, Ohio.  It's in Appalachia and every time a driver hits a utility pole, this village has power outages.  But I have a new liquid propane gas sensor.

2019/10/15

New Heated Hose

In the last week, the daily lows have gotten as down to 34°F. My previous heated hose broke last winter. So, I paid $138 for a new one. I upgraded the city water port to feature a "Y" splitter and put a pressure gauge on it. Well, this new heated hose has a higher flow rate and it was hard trying to control it.  I have a 1988 Itasca Sundancer 25ft motorhome, so I have to keep its pressure down at 20psi, instead of 40 because the plumbing is old.

2019/10/12

Water Online

The water lines at the hot water tank in my 1988 Itasca Sundancer 25ft motorhome have been bypassed.  Back in February, the hot water tank ruptured. And I thought that the T connections were a part of it and non-serviable? But I have a replacement tank and saw threadded holes on it, which lead me to investigate.

The hose connections are not your typical 1/2in variety. Their noses are more rounded off, or bullet like. My local hardware stores dont have anything for them. Either the space where the hot water tank's located was too cramped for me to see then, or I just assumed that all 3 connections in the T were the same?

With the new information, I took one of the T's off and found that the one that mounted to the hot water tank was a standard 1/2in. I was then able to screw in a PVC valve that could later bypass the hot water tank in case of an emergency.

From there, I got some 1/2in, threaded PVC caps from my hardware store. At that point, I removed both T's and used the caps to turn them into couplers.

Right now, I have cold water running to the kitchen sink, shower/ bath tub, toilet and bathroom sink. But the bathroom sink plumbing has a rupture and its leaking.

I had to use my black water hose to clear out some sewer blockage. I use a jet attachment on my sewage outtake port for this. After about 5 minutes, it cleared and went right down.

I found a mouse hole at the exterior hot water tank relief valve and patched it up with some Big Gap Filler.

2019/10/11

Two Lines Run, New Shock

I snaked the oil pressure gauge and tachometer positive lines through the firewall of my 1987 Chevrolet G20 van.  I know that I don't have enough tube for the oil pressure gauge.  I'm going to wait for daylight to determine what bolt the water pressure gauge needs to mount to the engine.

I replaced one rear shock, but it didn't improve the van's disposition.  But the bolts came off easy.  I had a cheater bar standing by and didn't need it.  It looks like I'll be replacing the rear leaf springs next?

2019/10/07

Motorhome Leaks

The 1988 Itasca Sundancer motorhome that I live in has multiple leaks. My guess is that it could handle 1 inch of rain, but not 2. The latest leak developed at the front roof hatch. And it was like a hemorrhage. Looks like I'll have to take a chance on sealing the roof very soon?

It's got this grey stuff up top that's like a ridge on the front and back. My roof is metal, but I'm concerned about the fiberglass body it's also adhered to. My thoughts now are to try getting the back one off. That way, if something goes wrong, I might be able to use some long sandbags to temporarily seal it? I may even be able to redirect the water flow temporarily?

2019/10/04

Products Received & Gym

I received my liquid propane sensor and my replacement hot water tank for my 1988 Itasca Sundancer 25ft motorhome. 

Things here regarding the trail is dying down.  It's getting quieter.  I got part of my workout routine on a spreadsheet and it's in my smartphone's storage now.  It looks like I deleted some things on my old smartphone that I probably shouldn't have.  My old workout spreadsheets are old and there's likely to be something that my current gym doesn't has, or is called something different.  I have it set up for 6 days a week and I'll have to go back through both routines to determine what pins I use for proper form?  And then I'll have to max out on them over two days.

But the important one is abdominal machine.  4 years after the Night From Hell, I had rehabilitation done on my back.  It's in shape, but my abdominals are apart of the tensioning for it and the rehab facility didn't have such a machine.  If I ever have to use a bicycle for longer than 8 miles to access the trail, I need to tension my abs.

2019/10/03

Township Meeting Places

I think I finally found a resource that shows where the township meeting places are.  The bad news is that the addressing system sucks in many places this region.  I'll be lucky to get half of them right.  I've been working with four counties and I may have found some prospective parking places along the Buckeye Trail (North Country concurrent)?

2019/10/02

Hot Water Tank, LP Gas Alarm, Roof Seals

The replacement hot water tank and propane gas alarm for my 1988 Itasca Sundancer Class C motorhome is ordered.

In order to survive another winter, I'll have to see what's going on with the auxiliary battery capacitor?  I may have to replace the electrical lines to the generator, but right now, I don't know what to get that could withstand low temperatures?

The auxiliary batteries might be needed to keep the pilot lit in the overhead heater/ air conditioner?  I'll have to ensure that they're full and I need the on-board battery conditioner to do it when the power converter is plugged into the AC source.  Also, the motor home is more than 2° pitched back right now.  I may have to seal the roof in order to get it to within 2° in order for the pilot flame in the heater to make proper contact?

2019/10/01

Gauge Lights Work

I finished wiring my voltmeter, oil pressure, water temperature and tachometer to the power system of my 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan.  I tested the gauge lights, I got the power from the headlight switch to work, but the only thing that I got wrong was I didn't do it to the dimer switch.  Oh well.  I'm happy.  I did turn the key to the accessory position and got a low voltage reading.  The instructions for it come with troubleshooting tips.  I didn't want to turn the engine over yet because I still have to install the lines for three of the gauges to the engine.

2019/09/29

1987 Chevy G20 Van Ignition Wire

On my 1987 Chevrolet G20 Sportvan, the positive wire that only comes on when the ignition key is turned to accessory, or on is yellow in color and I found mine under the steering column. I had to remove the dashboard underside to get to it.

2019/09/26

Bloody Fingers

A couple of cuts on my left fingers aren't too bad.   Something I was working on with my 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan took a little chunk out of my left thumb.  Yesterday, I was boring out holes for a piece to adapt the new front passenger's side seat belt.  Since the drill bit was somewhat wider, my 1/2in drill ripped the brackets out of my baby vice a couple times.  Both times, I made the mistake of trying to hold the brackets with my hand while powering the drill.  Needless to say, I wasn't strong enough and I probably won't do that again?

I just tested the positive wires that I created for the new gauges.  I tested them to the new negative that I ran.  The positive coming from the light switch works.  But one that I did from a tan wire running from the ignition doesn't.  Both used electrical IDC connectors, but I have had trouble with them using 16 gauge wires before.

I don't remember if I stated this before, but I mounted 6in x 9in speaker boxes to the ceiling right behind the front driver and passenger's side heads.  So far, they're working.  But I'd rather drive it some to see if the connections inside the box will wiggle out of contact?  But I like the boxes that I have there.  The ones in the rear of the van were mounted before I bought it.  The front ones have a slightly different shape and in the future, I could use metal brackets to bolt them into a vertical position in back corners of the van.  I figure that the front ones that I have now could be mounted in the rear and present less of an obstruction than the Walmart bought ones.  I use the van for cargo.

2019/09/25

The Latest Episode

It feels like it was a bit of a battle today.  What I'm working on isn't really about priority.  It's more like finishing up projects that I started so I don't have too many things going on at once.  My 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan's interior was stripped down by the previous owner.  Currently, it only has two seats in it.  I think that the passengers side came from a Dodge?  It was missing a seatbelt, so I installed an aftermarket one today.  It took some smoked drill bits and some retrofitting, but I got it done.  Adventurer's Project has people that could volunteer on trail maintenance, but they've been dependent on my wheels.

In December, January and February, I was in rehabilitation for a muscular lumbar injury that I got from hiking 5 years ago.  In February, the power in my motorhome that I'm living in went out.  I forgot to turn off the water and my hot water tank ruptured.  During this episode, I got in my car and went to a motel for a couple nights. 

As soon as I did that, the RPM's in my former 2008 Chevy HHR started jumping.  I thought it was from a clogged catalytic convert and kept driving on it.  In late April, I had to clutch replaced because it failed on the road.  In May, I replaced the oil valve gasket.  In June, I replaced the entire exhaust and the RPM's got a little better, but kept jumping.  I then had it towed to the shop where they diagnosed that the timing chain broke.  Apparently when that happens in engines like this, the engine is toast.  In the middle of July, the BTA had it's work week in this area and I got a ride for it.  In late July, I purchased my current 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan.

I was refitting it through the month of August and September, but I managed to get some trail work done.  However last week, my automatic transmission locked up on me.  If I had to guess and had the stamina, I might be able to work on that in 2 days?  However, there is a possibility that the transmission was weak to begin with and it needs a replacement.  One of my neighbors told me that he knows of somebody who might have a van like mine with a working transmission in it?  He's a good guy with a truck and I might be able to ask him to help me and get it?

But right now, the seat belt was a good start.  I also ran a power wire from the light switch and ignition for four gauges that I need to install.  If I'm feeling up to it tomorrow, I plan on installing the various gauges to their appropriate places.  I have a voltmeter, oil pressure, engine temperature and tachometer.  I've never done them before.  So, testing and hunting things down and being new at it is going to take more time for me than another backyard mechanic.

The van has vacuum leaks that really ought to get found before it goes on the road again.  I have to spray brake parts cleaner to find it.  And the rear shocks need replaced and I have them.  At that point, I can then go after the transmission.  I've never serviced a transmission before, so all that newness is going to take some time.

So, for all those who might be thinking that they'd like to join me on trail maintenance on Saturday, September 28th, I have to cancel.  And I can not reschedule until this transmission situation is remedied.

2019/09/12

Van Seats In Storage

My 1987 Chevrolet G20 Sportvan was over loaded inside.  And the 7 van seats that I got about a week ago put it over the top.  I drove an hour away to my storage unit and just threw them on top of everything there.  I brought the van home with the fuel gauge just shy of the "E" line.  I didn't need to pour the 5 gallons in the Jerry can into it.

2019/09/08

Headlamp Relay, the Weather and American Discovery Trail Inspection

I'll have to lift the battery out of my 1987 Chevrolet G20 Sportvan in order to see what's under it.  I have yet to find a relay for the head and bright lights.  Right now, both sides are not responding.

I live closer to the east side of The Wilderness Loop of the Buckeye Trail (North Country partially concurrent).  But there's reasons why I configure my Weatherbug app on my Android based smartphone to monitor the weather in four locations.  Two of those are on-road.  Regardless, if I get a weather alert, know of a hiker being out here and I have the means, I'll go out and get them.

But the other reason is internal.  It tells me what I can do as far as everything else is concerned.  Pruning can be done on any day except lightning.  Blazing can be done on days except lightning, but only if the blazing surface starts out dry and has a window where it hues before it rains.  It's unknown if we can bench the tread if the ground is saturated?  And we can run the DR Mower, weed whackers and chain saws on just about any day, except those with lightning.

But the most finicky tasks are ones having to do with GPS'ing locations.  These require days when the skies are Partly Sunny or better.  Right now, the northeast corner of The Wilderness Loop are predicted to have one suitable day, but the rest are not.  However, go 30 miles south to the south side and I have a streak of 3 suitable days.

Two days ago, I was in the Marietta area.  I had to get some new 6in x 9in speaker boxes, which were at an audio/ video shop in Parkersburg.  I was considering going to the Sternwheel Festival in Marietta, but I wasn't comfortable parking my van there with everything that I was hauling in the van.  So, I made a call from behind the line (a football aphorism) and performed my annual inspection on the American Discovery Trail - Ohio/Kentucky, Segment 01.  I volunteer with the American Discovery Trail Society, too.

It's a 33 mile long, on-road segment from the West Virginia line at Belpre of Washington County to Marion Township of Morgan County, Ohio.  I never liked it much until then.  Apparently, I was seeing it during the wrong time of the year.  For some reason, it's pretty now?  But it can be a bear to park on.

Getting back to the weather, I have an excellent day for tomorrow.  But I have several loads of laundry that needs to get done.  The van really needs me to unload some of the cargo.  And to go to the south side, I really need to camp out there and my tent needs repairs.  But I got some groceries today.  It's always best when I have my cereal because I'm on the road faster.

2019/09/03

Adventurer's Project and the I-70 Corridor

Some Buckeye Trail Association (BTA) chapters work on consensus only and they do what they either feel like, or what they can agree on. But they way that I lead Adventurer's Project is with more of an addenda.  In other words, I'm much more top down.

Trail promotion with the project has been with the intention of gaining more volunteers, or lately, it's been for volunteer procurement.  But with the others, it's been for getting more hikers.  Our neighbor to the west is hardly functional at present. And our neighbor to the north has had paid Facebook ads for their "likes," but their approach was statewide, instead of more local like us.  As a result, we can ask them to post Noble County, Ohio events, but they have yet to develop the audience for them along the I-70 corridor between Zanesville, Ohio and Wheeling, West Virginia.

We have a very good reason to need such an audience and that is we have a supporter in Caldwell of Noble County, Ohio who offers us an event space for free so far with food and drink nearby.

Buckeye Trail Chapters have this "if you live closer" to such a section, then you should belong to such a chapter.  Adventurer's Project has to honor those statements, so the I-70 Corridor is outside of our coverage area.

We have, however, had donated Facebook ads for page likes up there. And the way its going to be handled is we need to do it to secure our own needs for events in Noble County.  When it comes to chapter side involvement, depending on where the participant lives, the project may need to refer them to their local chapter first. However, if the participant insists, then we'll take them as our chapterside supporters.  But for the most part, what Adventurer's Project promotes for on the I-70 corridor is for event participants and more hikers on the sections that we cover.

NCTC vs NCNST

Adventurer's Project supports the Road Fork and Whipple Sections of the Buckeye Trail (North Country concurrent). When using the phrase "North Country," it refers to the moniker "North Country Trail," which refers to two entities working in tandem with each other. In this case it's the "North Country Trail Association (NCTA)," which has duties to the route and maintenance of the "North Country Temporary Connector (NCTC)," which covers the most of the on-road route and anything that isn't certified. And then there's the National Park Service, which administers the certified segments, or the "North Country National Scenic Trail (NCNST)," which are mostly off-road. Usually, when this moniker is used on some Adventurer's Project's communications, it stands for both indiscriminately.

However, if a location is stated on one or the other, then their more specific designation will be used.  In Far SE Ohio (including the NCNST in the Marietta Unit of The Wayne), the routing, maintenance and administration of their route is handled my the Buckeye Trail Association (BTA)

2019/08/30

Stereo Wired

When I had the stereo head unit installed in my former 2008 Chevy HHR, I bought it from Best Buy and had Geek Squad install it.  They said that they had to dismount the entire dashboard to get to it and I can tell you that at the time, that was way over my head.  But the HHR had existing stock wiring for it.

My stripped down 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan didn't.  It has an aftermarket fuse block and the radio fuse wasn't wired to it.  I ended up using a device that I inserted into my "Gauges" fuse slot.  It's kind of a like a SIM converter on a computer that back in the day, could turn a mother board with a 4MB total RAM slots and make it an 8MB.  This thing had two female fuse slots.  One was for the 20 amp fuse for the gauges and the other was for a postive wire extending out if it.  The second one could only hold a up to a 10 amp fuse, which was just enough for the stereo.

I got it wired like I mentioned before.  The gauges fuse port in the block was the only one that was wired to the ignition.  That became a problem later on.  But I got the stereo and rear speakers wired up.  I didn't do the fronts because taking apart the dashboard entailed dismounting the speedometer cable and I wasn't prepared to do that.  At this point, I believe that it has to be dismounted from the transmission.  Normally when it comes to doing something I don't know, I study the Haynes manual the night before I do something like this.  That way I get familiar with it in theory before application.

I wanted to move on to the aftermarket gauges.  But they too need a power source that is switched to the ignition.  Had that fuse been able to handle more than 10 amps, I could have done everything on the same positive wire.  But now, I have two choices.  I don't know the make and model of the aftermarket fuse block.  So, I can either unbolt it and go exploring, or I can attach a switch to it, which means that I would have had to bore another hole in the dashboard that I wasn't prepared to do. 

So, I stopped for the day.  I don't know when I'll get back to it?  The right rear speaker box has a short in its speaker wire inputs. 

The stereo wiring was a bunch to stuff in.  I had to make sure that it missed the seals for the interior engine hump cover, otherwise known as a "dog house."

2019/08/29

Rear Speaker Wires Routed

I got the rear speaker wire routed in my 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan.  My interior is stripped down to the metal, so I drilled holes in the upper sides and on one of the roof supports for zip ties.  I had to reroute my original plan so that the speaker wires didn't run parallel with the interior light and a custom 12V primary wire.  Those power wires run along the left side, while the speakers had to go right.  The trick now is to figure out how to route the wires in the passenger's side foot well to avoid the primary wire supplying power to my custom, dedicated front 12V power port?  Under the dash, I'll have to keep the wires somewhat slack to install the head unit and get it back out should I need to?

Tomorrow is a big day.  The primary 12V wire is already routed under the head unit, so that's where I'm going to get the head units "always on" power for it's clock since that wire goes directly to the battery.  I'm not sure if I'll have to fuse it?

Now, I have a fuse splitter for the block.  I don't have to go behind it and find out what's what?  I'm going to run primary power for 5 components off that one line.  I have a stereo head unit, tachometer, oil pressure, temperature gauges and a voltmeter.  All the components will need to be hooked to the light switch.  Then a few grounds will have to be run.

I'm looking forward to installing the water gauge and tachometer.  I have to drill quite a hole to get the temperature sensor out of the firewall. 

2019/08/28

New Smartphone

I now have a new Samsung Galaxy S10 5G smartphone, model SM-G977U.  It has a 256GB internal storage capacity.  I also acquired 256GB microSD cards for it and my dedicated digital camera.  At 512GB's total, it will probably handle anything that I store on it when I Geo Photo Catalog the trail.  To put it another way, the capacities will probably outpace my abilities now?

I'm working on transferring about 40GB of data from my old external SD card to the new one.  And for the last 20 minutes, it's been taking it's time with coming up with a completed percentage.  I even went from the SD card adapter in the laptop's SD slot to a USB adapter and it's still chugging along.  At least, the laptop changed its message.

2019/08/25

Van Work, Part II, or is it III?

The front and back auxiliary power ports were installed today.  The back one is has been attached to my four pin trailer wiring harness.  This thing is ready for driving and for some primitive parking in The Wayne now.  With both power ports, I can now reach all four wheels in case one of them needs to be inflated.  I can now also drop my tire pressure for gravel roads, but then pump back up for pavement and better gas mileage.

I changed my mind with using the provided gauge mounts that I got in their packages.  I saw somebody cut their holes in the dashboard and that's what I did.  The tachometer is on the upper right and I can see it very good.  One of the spots wasn't so advantageous, so I saved it for the gauge that I wouldn't need so often.

Listening to a couple Loreena McKennit albums went well today. 

I need to get a task list for a certain sequence of events.  But I have to drill holes in the roof support structures to slip zip ties through.  I made an error when routing the right rear stereo speaker wire.  I routed the wires parallel to the overhead light's power wire.  I had to get them out of the channel because sound wires next to parallel power wires causes interference in the speakers.  Right now, the driver's side is the electrical one and the passengers is the sound.  So those holes need to be drilled and wire ran.  My strategy is to mark the right channels with a piece of Gorilla tape at the bottom.  Then the left channels will use electrical tape so I know what's what when I get to the stereo in the dash.

Power wise, the the wires that run to front auxiliary port is always on because it was ran directly to the positive cable on the battery.  My plan is to hook the stereo's "always on" wire to it.  That's what keeps the clock running when the engine is off.  The speaker wires from the rear are coming.  But I'll have to take the entire dashboard out to get to the front speakers.  And with the van being stripped down, it's a mystery as to whether any necessary hardware is present.  But I'll probably have to take it down anyways to drill a hole for my new, aftermarket AM/ FM antenna?

For all power items to the gauges and stereo, I'm thinking that one 16 gauge wire ought to do it?  Then there's the power leads that are for when the headlights are on.  One 16 gauge wire ought to do that, too.

2019/08/24

Work on Van Today

I ran the rear right positive speaker wire, but not the left yet.  I'm waiting to take off the dog house (interior engine hump cover) on my 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan.  I have four gauges, three of which  and possibly two 12 gauge positive wires have to get through the firewall.  At present, I'm not sure how to disassemble the steering column to get to the ignition positive wire?  The dog house has to come off because there's access to the bottom of the stereo when it's off.

When I opened the lid of one of my bins in the cargo hold, a couple of sharp pointed screws fell to the floor.  The floor is rusting and has holes.  So, now I'm thinking of pulling them back out and vacuuming the floor after all?

I've been reading through a forum regarding stereo speaker wire.  That positive 12 gauge positive that I want to run to the tailgate for the tire inflator to reach the rear wheels will have to run along a different channel, or they risk creating noise on the speakers due to cross talk.

I was working with the new passenger's side seat belt today.  Turns out that I'm going to have to use the stock Chevy seat belt holder and mount.  It's just a bar that extents from the corner of the roof and left side body.  The problem is that I was able to cut the replacement's upper loop to get the new belt out.  But modifying the stock holder is going to require some serious sawzall time because it's thick and automotive grade.  My plan is to cut a slit right down the middle of the stock holder's loop to try and squeeze the new seat belt through it.

I have no idea what the back of a fuse box looks like?  Guess I'll find out tomorrow?  I'm running a custom 12V power port to my 3 way splitter so that it definitely has enough power to handle multiple 3.1A devices.  I did this on my former Chevy HHR and on my motorhome and I like it a lot.  Now that rear port is going to get everything that tire inflator can handle.

I definitely like working on cars in the evenings.  Here in Far SE Ohio, it gets sweaty hot during the day in the summer.  I'm thinking about changing it's oil soon because what's in there is new, but it's full of Seafoam.  I didn't change the oil when the engine was still warm.  That could have more easily removed any engine shavings.  But in guessing the engine temp, it could be somewhat risky.  It's a gloves on and long sleeve shirt procedure.  What needs to go back in it is 4 quarts of 10W-30 (I think???) and some Lucas Oil additive.

2019/08/22

Priorities

Sometimes, I get caught at an impasse over what has priority around here.  Today, I could have completed the van's interior refit tasks.  Should I have completed them today, I would have the next two days to geo photo catalog certain segments of the trail.  But I went with something that's more like a "personnel matter" today.  It's also a bit of a person matter.

A few of Adventurer's Project's supporters don't drive.  And one of them that doesn't isn't always in this area very long.  So, I did a little shopping for the van as indicated in the previous log and stopped by afterwards to see them.  Which one is best?  I decided to essentially flip a coin.  I saw them and now I have to take a day that is atmospherically right for GPS'ing to work on the van.

Adventurer's Project's chapterside supporters are hopefuls to attend a "planning meeting" in this area, is a which is a BTA event.  This event will help the BTA determine our strength as we apply for chapterhood.  Chapterhood will make this region stronger.  But one of the purposes of the geo photo catalog is that it could be used to advertise this region's vacant trail adoption (maintenance) segments.  My count says that we're closer to chapterhood than filling the vacant segments.  And as for the chapterside supporters, they're rigged up in such a way to be this area's "Maintenance Reserve," who'd be called up for large projects, but they could fill in on the more primary tasks in the short term?

Seat Belts, Bluetooth Head Unit and CABL

I have two new aftermarket seat belts that came in the mail today.  One is for the front passenger's side and the other might be for the mid-row driver's side?  And I stopped by the auto parts store and talked to one of the employees about how stripped down the van's interior is.  I'm going to have to wire the stereo in from the fuse box and there are no pig tails for the front speakers.  He suggested that I use 16 gauge electrical wire instead of speaker wire to connect the four speakers to the Bluetooth head unit.  I purchased a roll of 100ft each for red and black coated wires.  That should do the connections for all four speakers and any electrical connections that I need to make.

I just stopped by the Washington-Morgan Community Action website and saw that there's a new brochure for the New Matamoras/ Macksburg Route.  It details the route in New Matamoras of Washington County.  Transit hikers will likely not board and disembark there because the closest the Road Fork Section - Buckeye Trail (North Country National Scenic concurrent) comes is about 4.6 miles from it.  But the Whipple Section comes to about 2.3 miles near the unincorporated community of Wade in said county.

This line runs on Thursdays only, so it's only good for hikers who come in from out of town (I really have to confirm that), or for resupply, particularly in Marietta.  Both Avenza Maps cut off New Mat, but it appears on the Guthooks Guides.  Unfortunately, I'm having difficulties finding a way to import custom digital mapping data into it.

2019/08/21

Solved Another Problem

I have an application on my computers that is like a automated system back-up.  It saves what is called an "image" that I can restore my system from.  The problem is that the image files are huge and the computer just creates additional ones every time it's scheduled.  Here on my laptop, those were saved on it's hard disk.  When they save and add up, they take up a lot of hard disk space easily and slow the computer's performance down.

But more recently, I acquired a 2 terabyte external hard disk, which has twice the capacity that the laptops drive has.  And it really doesn't matter how full I get it.  So, I redirect the image save location to the external now.  This is one thing that I don't have to worry about for a while when doing things for Adventurer's Project.

2019/08/19

Items to Install and Storage

I have a big day later with my 1987 Chevrolet G20 Sportvan.  There's a whole list of things to do and the only thing that concerns the engine is hooking up my voltmeter, engine temperature, oil pressure gauges and the tachometer.  I have a 90° angler attachment for my drill and I already have a spot to slip the hose and electrical through the firewall. 

My bright lights aren't working right now.  And I have to test every fuse and check every relay.  I can install my 6in x 9in rear speakers and run their wires, but as for the 4in x 5in front speakers and the head unit, I might wait for that?  This van has been stripped down and the previous owner offered to help with the head unit.

It's an "absolute must" that I get my cigarette lighters working.  This is because if I get a puncture in a tire on some gravel road, I have the patch kit, but without 12V power, I can't use the inflation.  So, these power ports must get done.  And I might have to wire a port in the tailgate to make sure that

With my big bins in the back of the van, one of those is my gear bay.  One of the things that it holds is surplus items that I buy in bulk, such as shampoo, laundry detergent and cotton swabs.  The motorhome doesn't store these as well.  So the gear bay is my resupply point.

I've got all the items in the motorhome that I can think of that need to be transferred there in a pile.  This week, I'm expecting my Haynes Small Engine Repair Manual and the passengers side seat belt and buckle in the mail. 

People now and then use to take notice of my keys.  I have two sets.  One for the motorhome and the other for the van, trailer and all the locks that go with it.  Well, I put them on a diet and committed everything that no longer has anything to go with it, or my keys for up north on to one ring and put them into my safe.  They're much slimmer now.  I had some carabiners on the van's set that I moved to my surplus set.  As a hiker and maintainer, there's always a need for carabiners.

It's good to get this stuff out of the way.  This winter I had the overhead bunk stuffed with just about everything I could think of so that my electric heaters wouldn't have to heat that area.  Now, I just got the chance to get them out of the way. 

My storage unit is about an hour south of here.  I got it when I was living out that way.  And the reason why I kept it was that it can be difficult to get one of these and the south of the trail that I cover is much closer to it.  So, I would just have to stop by there when I was in the neighborhood.  But this past year, with my former Chevy HHR needing so much work and being virtually undriveable, it delayed this until now.

But since the HHR has a new owner and he has big plans for it, when I empty out the storage items out of the van at the storage unit, I can get him the HHR's back seats and one head rest that I took out of it.  He's got another set of 4 rims for the van that he said he'll give me and I'll have winter tires mounted on them.  I plan to pretty much hibernate then anyways, but I still have medical appointments that I might have to attend to about an hour away?

2019/08/18

Passing Up Tomorrow

I work with the weather forecast day by day when it comes to geo photo cataloging the Road Fork and Whipple Sections of the Buckeye Trail (North Country concurrent). For those of you just tuning in, those sections are in SE Ohio, generally east of I-77 and south of I-70 in Ohio. That's one reason why I like to call this region "Far SE Ohio." 

I lead Adventurer's Project, which is an effort to try and create a new chapter of the Buckeye Trail Association. It supports these sections and this project is a part of our data collection, which could help in multiple ways.

But getting back to the weather, my camera devices can embed the coordinates of where the pictures are taken. But because these aren't being done with stronger, professional grade equipment, the conditions in the sky have to be good for a more accurate position.

I watch Weatherbug for skies predicted to be "partly sunny" or better.  Tomorrow, we're expected to get lightning on the Road Fork Section, but the forecast for the Whipple Section reads sunny and hot. Unfortunately, my van is fuel inefficient, old and the Whipple Section is about a hour away. I'll have to overnight, but my tent needs repairs.  I'm afraid I'll have to pass tomorrow up.

2019/08/16

Oil Change

Oil changed in my 1987 Chevrolet G20 Sportvan at 141,231 miles on the odometer.

Cracked Camera Glass and Starter

I cracked the glass cover on my Samsung Galaxy Note 8 camera.

I went down to the dollar store to get a measuring cup and some washable paints. There may be a leak at the oil pan gasket on my 1987 Chevrolet G20 Sportvan? I have to pour 5 fluid ounces of Seafoam into the motor oil spout today.

And I don't believe that I'll be able to insert a 1/8th inch drill bit, or Allen key to check the new starter's gear and fly wheel gap? So I saw a online video about using children's washable paint on the gears to determine the gap.

2019/08/14

Geo Photo Catalog, A Rough Year, Whole Circuit Challenge

The Geo Photo Catalog is a project for the Road Fork and Whipple Sections that I have already underway.  It involves taking pictures with my smartphone and camera app's locators turned on.  What does is it embeds the coordinates of where the picture was taken.  The idea, is to take them at every blaze, or where they're supposed to be according to the BTA's maintenance guide lines.  Because of the weakness of a smartphone's GPS antenna, they have to be taken when the sky is partly sunny or better.  And on Weatherbug, there's a difference between "party cloudy" and "partly sunny."

It's multifaceted program as it's purposes are:

1) provide the Buckeye Trail Association with a visual record of the trail

2) provide pictures for a Vacant Segment Showcase

3) to provide Adventurer's Project and the chapter it may become photos to use on it's website and social media, particularly in the winter.

Adventurer's Project covers the Road Fork and Whipple Sections of the Buckeye Trail (North Country concurrent) in Far SE Ohio, or generally east of I-77 and south of I-70.  Those sections are off-road at Caldwell Lake and in the Marietta Unit of the Wayne National Forest.

It's been a rough year.  Where to start???  The project had about 5 presentations and the public only showed up at one of them.  We have two volunteers ready to go, but with both there's some scheduling difficulties.  We might have another? 

I live in my motorhome in Woodsfield.  In December, I started getting physical therapy on my back.  That concluded in February, but my abdominals still need tensioned.  What I've learned is that I'm not in as good of condition as I once thought and now I'm unable to make the 13 mile one way trip to the nearest off-road portion by way of bicycle because the hills in this county are too much to handle at this time.

The electric warming hose that I was using for water to my motorhome failed and my hot water tank ruptured in a cold snap in February.  I had to get a motel for a couple nights, but this is when my car started acting up,  The RPM's were jumping.

In April, I finally saved up to get my car's clutch replaced.  I then added two bottles of "Guaranteed to Pass" in two tanks of gasoline to try and get the catalytic converters clean..  After the first one, it started to jump less.  But part way through the second, I wasn't satisfied it was doing enough.

  Sometime afterwards, I started to replace the entire exhaust because in the year prior, a mechanic told me that I was leaking oil and as it was dripping down the back side of the engine, that it could probably clog one of the catalytic converters?  Since the header pipe at the engine was bad and it was all practically welded together by this point anyways, I felt it necessitated a full replacement from "stem to stern."

It didn't alleviate the RPM's jumping.  I changed the oil valve gasket along with the exhaust, but that didn't do anything.  There's got to be something else?  Because then it wouldn't start.

I had it hauled to Hilltop Auto Services just outside of Woodsfield to perform a diagnostic.  They came back and said that the timing chain had gone and as a result, the valves were warped and the pistons were probably gone as well?

At that point, there was somebody in town who wanted to make my HHR into a jacked up, four wheel drive "Baby Grave Digger."  I paid for the tow truck from Hilltop to his house because it was a heck of a lot better than sending it 30 miles north to a junk yard.  But on the other hand, he had a old Chevy conversion van that I bought for $800.  It use to be a passenger van, but it's interior is stripped down.  I only have two seats in it.  And the passenger's side needs a seat belt, which is on order.

So, we're back up and running, but there's a few experiments to run with a rear wheel drive only, top heavy vehicle in The Wayne.  Most of its parking opportunities occur in a grass strip on the side of narrow, gravel roads.  But there's another reason to run these experiments...

The Buckeye Trail Association's board voted in the affirmative to have a "challenge" over the whole circuit in one weekend.  Basically, the BTA needs to be able to park cars every 3 miles or less in order to have hikers cover such distances over the 1,454 mile circuit almost virtually simultaneously at once.  Some of those vehicles could be RWD only's?  I have to come up with the contingency procedures in case it rains and their wheels sink?

Right now, I have 600 - 800lbs over my rear axle.  But I'll also be experimenting with a new arrangement of parking boards and a come-a-long, or hand winch.  With FWD, I would just place a board under each tire when I park in these places.  When I leave, I have about 2 seconds of thrust, the rest is momentum and that better get me out.

But with a rear wheel drive, the drive wheels are further back.  So the experiment is to see if four boards placed perpendicular in front of the boards being parked on would be enough traction to make it out?  My conversion van has one disadvantage that the HHR didn't and that's it's wheelbase.  The HHR could come out of a road side parking place forward, or back, depending on what was more advantageous?  The conversion van's wheel base is likely to be not as generous?  It probably has to come out in the forward direction only because of how tight the treeline is to the edge of these grass strips?  Without knowing more, that's merely speculation at this point. 

We have different grass strips.  Some are up hill, down hill and some are on flats.  We have to anticipate that these vehicles could be parked over night?  If so, will front reflectors be needed?  And if so, what color?

Oil Filter and Plug

Yesterday, I drained the oil in my 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan.  Because I had the wrong oil filter and the auto parts store was going to open until the next day, I kept the oil plug and filter off and let it drain overnight.  It hit the dew point last night, so I kept them off throughout the day to try and evaporate anything that may have condensed inside the engine block.

Today, I got the right filter.  I installed that and put the plug back in it's hole.  I'm going to wait until I mount the new starter tomorrow before I replace the motor oil.

I normally do my work in a gravel driveway.  Either my 3 ton jack stands were digging into the soil hard core, or those black struts on it were about to snap?  When I was working on it the day before, I had my 3-1/2 ton shop jack up against the bottom of the conversion van just in case.

When I did the oil, I got under the van from the front, which there's a platform under the engine that extends to the front wheels.  I jacked it up to get past that.  But what I didn't realize is that if I approached it from the sides, I don't have any running foot boards under the doors, so just like my motorhome, I can just get under the van without jacking it up.

2019/08/06

Work on the Conversion Van

As of now, my 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan has 141,134 miles on the odometer.

- Windshield wipers replaced

- new tires from Walmart mounted about 50 miles ago. They are Dextero DH2 P225/75R15's on the front two wheels only

- Fuel cap replaced

- drivers side mirror replaced

- pivoting blindspot mirrors mounted

- reverse and rear marker light bulbs replaced. Right rear marker light still does not respond.

- cargo hold was loaded to about 800lbs. Its either over the rear axle, or immediately in front of it.

2019/07/31

Autoparts In

I got more auto parts.  I think I spent over $500 on them?  Turns out that I'll have to "burb" the radiator.  But the procedure requires knowing the engine temperature so it doesn't go critical.  My 1987 Chevy Van only has a dashboard light that I'm not sure if it's hooked up right?  So, I've got gauges for the battery, engine temperature, oil pressure and a tachometer.  I'll be filling the radiator to the top with water.

2019/07/30

Radiator Cap

Today, I got a radiator cap for my 1987 Chevrolet (Chevy) G20 Sportvan.  It's really low on antifreeze and I'm convinced that it needs to be filled from the cap instead of the reservoir first.  But my Haynes repair manual, which is coming in the next 36 hours.  I might as well not start the oil change until then.

2019/07/29

Radiator Cap

My 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan doesn't have a window washer reservoir.  And probably not a motor either.  That's why it didn't activate on the way back from the BTA board retreat.  Lucky for me, the reservoir is cheap.  I have to get a new radiator cap because I believe that I'm going to have to warp the one that's on there to get  it off?

2019/07/24

Correction: Used 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan

The van is a 1987 Chevy G20 Sportvan with a 305 cubic inch, 5.0L, fuel injected engine.

Acquired: Used Chevy Sportvan

I just acquired a 1986 Chevy Sportvan with over 140,000 miles on the odometer yesterday.  I grew up in the working class in these duplexes outside of Painesville.  We lived there for 12 years and that outpaced anyone we knew there.  We worked under cars using a carpet on gravel.  And out there, we had more "beaters" than I care to remember.

Particularly when you buy a used vehicle from a private seller, there are two things that you do right away.  1) inspect it.  And 2) give it a basic tune up just because.  You don't know how old the oil, air filter, spark plug and wires are?

The van has a dual exhaust, but extensive rust on the tailgate floor, so much that it's developed holes.  The engine seems strong and has lots of power.  I tried to fill up the gas tank, but it only took about 7 gallons at the pump.  The fuel gauge is reading less than half.  My guess is that this is an old vehicle with a big tank and the pump nozzle just has to be manipulated a little?  I know this happens to old trucks.

As an update, I believe that I still have 73,349 points at Speedway gas stations.  I last knew that I had enough for a nearly free full tank.  Speedway requires that I pay something.  Last time, I paid $0.08 per gallon.  But my nearest one is about 30 minutes away.  And the motorhome isn't going much of anywhere for a while.

2019/07/17

Professional Grade Weed Whacker

Yesterday, in my tent at the Little Muskingum Watershed Association, I realized that I brought a wrong leg to my convertible pants/shorts.  Most of the time on the Whipple Section - Buckeye Trail (North Country concurrent).  Most of the time on Whipple, I can weed whack in shorts.   But when I went down to the Little Muskingum River Flats yesterday with my weed whacker to do some "business," I had to wear my denim pants.

On the flats, there's stinging nettles.  They don't do anything permanent when they get on you... they just burn.  And the only way they come off in a pinch is with water.

We were in the middle of the Road Fork/ Whipple Work Week 2019.  And it doesn't matter if it's 104°F.  If that's the time... that's the time.  I had the only professional grade brush cutter/ weed whacker available and I need to do at least the western third or half where it's thickest and tallest.  It has a 36.2cc displacement, so it's the biggest and most powerful thing out there.

2019/07/16

Trail Impassable

For the record, the Little Muskingum River Flats between the Whipple Section - Buckeye Trail (North Country concurrent), Points 05 - 06 was impassable when Warrior Expedition hikers Luke Bushatz and Chad Hiser came through.  As the section supervisor of said section, I certified this segment as temporarily impassable and recommended that they bypass it.  By temporarily impassable, that means that the remedy to the problem was so internally trivial that it could have been corrected before the BTA could compensate with a trail alert.  Nonetheless, this area is known for it's steep 400ft ascents/ descents with a flood plane in between that is subject to flood and river sediments that make growing vegetation ideal.  When in disrepair, this area is subject to stinging nettles and 6ft, dense brush that would have made navigation a nightmare.

2019/07/15

Road Fork/ Whipple Work Week

Normally, I dont complain about how heavy my gear is, but yesterday got me. My body's water consumption is still use to the Army. And for other medical reasons, I carry 6 liters in two Camelback bladders.

I had my 20,000mAh power bank for my smartphone and I had to get rid of that. In the past I was concerned that my toes might hit my brush cutter's fixed blade. I just threw out my hiking boots, but after this, I dont think I'll be using my steel toes much longer?

I did 7.32 miles yesterday on volunteer brush cutting.

I feel terrible that the crew is working on the Little Muskingum River Flats and I'm not down there with them. Last night when I went to sleep, the left side of my brain was in slight pain.

I stayed behind today with Tracey, the Chuck Wagon Volunteer. She took me to New Martinsville to get some things for my brush cutter. The high is out of adjustment and the clerk at Bridgeport gave me a small flathead screwdriver for it. Turns out it's a hex screw inside of a tube. Needle nose pliers might get inside there? And I said might?

It amazes me for how much the work weeks are not accommodating to those who dont have a car. I would have thought that the BTA would have found a way around this by now?

2019/07/05

Trail Impassable, Permit and Rental Van

The DIY automotive work that I've been doing took me my volunteerism to the brink with the maintenance season and these thru hikers.  My car is at the shop and it has been moved. So either they diagnosed it, it's in the process or its being repaired?

I have a rental car until Monday afternoon.  Yesterday, I determined that I wasnt able to mow the Little Muskingum River Flats between the Whipple Section - Buckeye/ North Country National Scenic Trail between Points 05 - 06, which is Brooks by McCain Hill & Bean Ridge Rds to Brooks by Cow Run Rds in Lawrence Township of Washington County, Ohio. At this time, the flats have 6ft high, thick brush and is impassable. 2019 Thru Hiker Lucas Smith, at my discretion as the Section Supervisor, bypassed the affected segment.

I met up with him today and got him his AEP ReCreation Land permit.

Just before I had this rental car, I had a rental van. I drove it down Cornstalk Road near Caldwell of Noble County, Ohio. The temperatures have been hot and the van took on some tar from a few patches. Enterprise called me and said that it's going to cost me about $100 to get it detailed because they couldn't wash it off. In other parts of the Buckeye Trail, tarred roads can be somewhat common. I'm somewhat surprised that that they didnt know that nature of these?

2019/06/30

Enemies

Far SE Ohio is something that you should never show weakness to.  Your enemies come for you when your weak.

2019/06/27

Fuel Lines Ripped Out

I ripped out the stock fuel lines out of my 2008 Chevy HHR LS.  They were virtually one piece and looks like they were one of the first things attached to the car before the engine was installed at the assembly plant.  The replacement comes in segments that screw in and I want to get to that tomorrow.

2019/06/24

Still Waiting...

I'm going to have to wait until tomorrow to get my 90° double 3/8's fuel fitting for my 2008 Chevy HHR.  It didn't arrive at one auto parts store and I called another, but they were out of it, too.

2019/06/23

Cloud Services and Fuel Line

My dropbox is at 92% of capacity.  It's free right now and I plan to keep it that way.  I transfered it's contents to my my hard disk drive.  Then to my external.  It's a bit confusing, but I have a hub that's usually plugged into my USB 3.1 port.  But I needed to plug the smartphone directly into that because I thought that I needed the high speeds.

My progress on the car is hung up until possibly the day after tomorrow.  I have to use a nylon fuel line repair kit to lop off the existing stock fitting on one of my fuel hoses because the steel line that goes to it rusted and it's fused in there.  That's the fitting that I might be waiting on?

2019/06/22

Sawed Off Gas Line

I sawed off the other steel fuel line on my 2008 Chevy HHR.  It's connected to a rubber hose that leads into the gas tank.  But even then, I tried to dislodge the line from the hose and it wouldn't come loose.  My guess is that between rust and heat, that it somehow became fused.

Everywhere on line says don't do saw them off, but I determined that a hand hacksaw would be safe because I did it in a way that didn't produce much heat and any shards as a result of the cutting process was probably going to occur on a part that I was going to dismount and throw away. 

This is rubber hose with a fitting.  That fitting was bonded to the plastic fitting with something like heat gun?  I can feel the ripples below it.  I wonder if I could chop off the stock fitting and introduce some kind of s coupler to another hose with a new fitting?

I'll be back at the auto parts store tomorrow.  Hopefully they'll tell me that this is possible, or give me an alternative?  Otherwise replacing the rubber hose in question means dropping the gas tank (by my self maybe).

2019/06/21

SDXC Card Upgrade

My 64 gigabyte SDXC card in my Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 NV-900V stopped reading.  I upgraded the card to a 128 gigabyte unit.  The tablet has doors that you use a "poke" tool through a hole to access it.  I thought it was a poke and lift tool, but I kept bending it.  Today, I got some safety pins and discovered that there was a spring loaded eject in there.  I kept the poker tool on my key chain because I once thought that nothing else was going to open it.

2019/06/18

Lightning Tasks

The last time that I had my car on jack stands and ramps, I had it up overnight.  It's not unheard of here Far SE Ohio, but still it made me nervous.  I haven't been sleeping right this past week and I was supposed to replace the fuel lines in my 2008 Chevy HHR LS, but I didn't wake up on time.  My people here need me to get those lines replaced.

For right now, I can't count on getting a day to see my family, or go to the Buckeye Trail Association's Headquarters unless I have a "lightning day."  We don't have any shelter in the Marietta Unit of The Wayne (National Forest).  So, it's bad to tempt lightning there.  I often create a list of "lightning tasks."  They can range from at the desk GPS mapping to putting up fliers and more.

2019/06/15

Tried to Move Road Fork/ Whipple Work Week, Dispersed Camping, Timeline, Failure

Three years ago, I was asked to request that the BTA move it's Road Fork/ Whipple Work Week back from July annually to June.  I explained that this could be difficult because Buckeye only has one crew to spare for this region.  We do it at the height of the growing season and that moving it back to June could entail the Buckeye Trail Association having to field a second crew. 

Well, I did it.  And all of those were concerns at the BTA, there was another.  The BTA expanded to include more work weeks elsewhere.  As a result, it was impossible to move Road Fork and Whipple's back.  I'm not sure if the outside understands just how big the BT is?  I'm certain that National Forest Service's view is deficient with it, however, that's not really their fault because this sort of data only resides currently on my computers. 

They think that the forest has truly dispersed camping when it comes to distance hikers, but they're missing a number of factors.  They have to do with the balance between Buckeye's very fixed amenities, the terrain in the Marietta Unit and the intent of the hikers, which influences where they disperse camp.  And I think that there are these unauthorized campsites on wonderful terrain because the hikers over the decades independently reached the same conclusion and that's what cased them to be well impacted?

The Hiker Hurricane was about 2 years ago (I think).  The three year plan for this region entailed stabilizing the Whipple Section.  That was done.  The second year was supposed to be for maintenance and using my section supervisor credentials to improve the trail adoption numbers for it.  But Year 2 was a dud.  I'm a Disabled Vet.  When my housing situation hit the fan in Year 1, I withdrew back to Painesville.  In May of Year 2, I purchased a 29 year old motorhome.  But it's expenses and mechanical needs exceeded my abilities.  The hiker hurricane hit that year.  In Year 3, I can't remember what happened then?  But in the winter, my family has a mechanic friend and we spent 4 months working on the motorhome and got me in Far SE Ohio on May 7th.  I've been here ever since.

While I was having difficulties, there are certain people who I don't entirely trust around both within and without.  And sometimes, some in the BTA can be impressionable to failure.  With exceptions, I kept my whereabouts a secret for the most part.

New External Hard Drive, Data and Myself

I got my new 4 terabyte external hard disk drive in the mail a couple days ago from Newegg.  The external hard disk that I've had all along was salvaged from my old laptop and is about one terabyte in size and is nearly full.  I'm busy transferring somethings off of it. 

Dropbox sent me a warning that I'm running out of space. And my personal Google Drive can't be too far behind.  Earlier, I disabled both from syncing to my laptop because it uses my 15 gigabyte mobile download on my Verizon Wireless account.  My cellular devices has what's called "DropSync" which uses their unlimited data download.  The laptop only uses the Dropbox when it's physically connected to the devices and I can see their file systems from it.  It's a work around to paying into a more expensive cellular package.  The two external hard disk drives are a work around to paying for more space on Google Drive and Dropbox.

I was writing to somebody about Adventurer's Project and it's strategies.  And he mentioned that they were "complicated."  This is in line with somethings that I've noted with the Buckeye Trail's Facebook group.  But am I smarter?  I don't mean to be subjective.

The facts are that no matter how degraded my writing skills are, my composition (which also affects my speech) has been known to be advanced.  It's been noted by the Ohio Department of Education, the United States Army and Lakeland Community College.  I performed in the top 10% of my class in the English portion of the 8th grade proficiency test.  My teacher said that I was up there with the honor students.  As for the rest of me, some of the years past have been different from the way things are now. 

There were really bad times in my past.  I expanded my cognitive abilities beyond the confines of my head. It was originally designed for defensive purposes.  It's like how a computer does it with virtual memory to supplement the RAM. It does it by converting hard disk space.  My imagination is quite powerful, so in a way, I use the surrounding space around me to act as a projection of my mind, which is internal to everybody except, perhaps, me?  Compared to primary and secondary school honor students, it's not a true boost like there's naturally is.  But I dated someone that you could call a "low power" honor student and sometimes, I can almost keep up.

2019/06/14

Alumni Day in Woodsfield

Alumni Day in Woodsfield, Ohio is held starting the Friday before Father's Day in June annually. I don't know how many days it spans?

2019/06/08

Exhaust Update 2019060801

I got the new exhaust in my 2008 Chevy HHR LS pretty much mounted.  But I missed a ring that goes on the end of the header.  The header has 10 bolts and really don't want to have to dismount it if I don't have to.  But the ring doesn't mount into anything.  What it does is that it's used to compress the gasket.  The only thing holding it is the torque of the 3 bolts that mount the catalytic converter to the header in a triangle pattern.  So, I'm trying to figure out how I can hold the ring on while I reattach the catalytic converter pipe?

My friend at the auto parts store here in town is borrowing my 3-1/2 ton jack to work on my neighbor's car.

2019/06/06

New External Hard Disk Drive Ordered and Exhaust Progress

I ordered a new 4 terabyte (4,096 gigabyte) external hard disk.  I'm getting the kind with a laptop size hard disk.  That way, the only thing the powers it is the USB.  If I got the desktop version, it would need the USB and an external power source.

Today, I purchased some automotive hardware to bolt my exhaust together for my 2008 Chevy HHR.  Yesterday, I found a spare clamp in the box.  I had the back of the car jacked on to my Rhino ramps.  Now I need to get the front up on jack stands so I can dismount the 2nd O2 sensor and pull the rest of the exhaust out.

I used my Milwaukee sawzall with my Diablo blades this afternoon and chopped up the back of the exhaust.

While at the auto parts store, I found that the 3 way switch and solenoid that controls my cab batteries when the motorhome is in motion is actually a common thing.  I'm thinking that it needs to be changed?  It's a 2nd battery kit that has the solenoid.

2019/06/05

Exhaust Status, Establishments, My Personal Profile & Organizational Body Contingencies

I purchased a new Milwaukee sawzall today.  I already have some short Diablo blazes on hand.  The way I figure it, the existing exhaust that I have in my 2008 Chevy HHR LS is coming down and getting sawed in half no matter what.

I met somebody from a community organization recently.  And one criticism that I've always had about establishments, particularly uptight ones, can be inconsistent with the communities at large.  Pushing policy and establishment is can't good for public relations because how are they going to identify with you?  It's neither the time or the place for this.  The key to success is to somehow be one with the people.

One of the reason why I started Adventurer's Project is to reduce the liabilities from my profile.  Lately, I've been becoming a little undone on my profile.  I have a tendency to fight when cornered.  But that's exactly what the project needs in Far Southeast Ohio because it's always been cornered.  Perhaps a little less now?  But that's me speaking having been virtually by myself until recently.

With a group, theoretically, the idea is to eliminate need.  As a group and amongst each other, you do things that eliminates the avenues for this.  Sometimes a good presiding officer is one who knows how to prevent this and if necessary, put out a brushfire FAST.

2019/06/03

O2 Sensor, Exhaust Project, Purchases, Transmission Fluid and SD Card

- I purchased two new O2 sensors and made a security deposit for their pullers at Advance Auto Parts in Woodsfield.  I was thinking that I could try to take them off with a wrench, but I decided that I should probably go with the proper tools.  One of the sensors won't be there until first thing tomorrow, so I called it a day.

- I cut through the remaining bolt on the exhaust manifold heat shield and got it off.  I then removed the 10 bolts around the manifold.  They were easy as they were not torqued on at all.  I did it from the top side of the engine.  And I have yet to look in the repair manual for anything regarding this project.  The only things that should be holding this exhaust up are maybe three rubber hangers and the sensors?  I was thinking that since I didn't need to remove the wheels that tomorrow I could somehow jack the car up and lower it on to my ramps.  But I'm concerned that they might not have enough lift to try and take the exhaust down in one piece.

- I was wearing shop gloves today

- I purchased a 3/8ths drive swivel head ratchet and some 1/2 drive, standard length SAE sockets from Woodsfield Ace Hardware.


- I didn't get the transmission fluid filled in my motorhome, but that's OK.  The procedure with it is that I have to remove the air filter manifold to put a funnel in it's dip stick tube.  I have 8 quarts to refill it with, but I don't think I got 4 out of it when I drained it.  My mechanic once told me that to truly drain this Ford C6 transmission, that I'd have to dismount it from the drive axle and engine.  My dual cab batteries have another 10% to recharge.  And if my 2008 Chevy HHR LS is low on charge, I'd rather jump it from the motorhome.

- My microSDHC card in my Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 SM-T817V is not responding. And my key to get into it is pointed.  I thought it use to have a rounded piece at the bottom to help lift the SD card door?  What I have is pointed and isn't lifting the door.  And I was just thinking about what if I had a bobby pin?

2019/06/01

Tomorrow's Addenda

Tomorrow, the automotive objective is to fill the transmission fluid in the motorhome, charge it's cab batteries, turn the engine on and watch for any leaks.  Then I should run the engine for about 90 minutes, while jumping the auxiliary batteries.

Today, I purchased a 5 inch extension for my 3/8ths ratchet and a set of deep well bolt grip sockets to cut into and remove the corroded bolt that is still retaining the exhaust manifold in my 2008 Chevy HHR LS.  I'm hoping to have the exhaust manifold (header) dismounted from the engine block tomorrow as well.

2019/05/31

BTA Support, Adventurer's Project, Photo Catalog of the Trail

The BTA has offered some support.  And we're certainly going to take them up on it.  On the maintenance side, we do have access to a DR String Trimmer, which makes cutting our brushy areas easier than a weed eater.  We have the offer of getting a link for Adventurer's Project's Facebook page on the Buckeye Trail's.  And we do have an offer for guidance in regards to converting Adventurer's Project into a chapter.

But what I really want to talk about is my own person acquisition of 4 Pulaski axes and 4 sets of hand pruners and folding saws.  If I asked for BTA support on these, it could take them weeks to assemble these.  Meanwhile, our area is mostly rural, but our Facebook following is mostly urban, suburban and exurban.  I like to think that I'm prepared for volunteers of any income level.

If I need volunteers, seeing that I get my car fixed, I'll just go out and get them.  And people who don't have tools will get them on loan.  That way when people are available and we're ready to go... well then, we're ready to go.  I have everything that I need for light and the most volunteer intensive heavy maintenance.

For those of you tuning in from distance trails other than Buckeye, I have maintenance organized into two categories.  "Light maintenance" is the pruning and blazing.  That's the least that we can expect from trail adopters.  But "heavy maintenance" is the muscles and the machines.  That encompasses the DR Mowers, string trimmers, weed whackers and benching.  It's best that these be done in a group.

Adventurer's Project has a unique way of dividing this up.  We're raising two crews.  One is the primary maintenance which consists of the trail adopters on mostly light maintenance.  Two is the chapterside volunteers who most concentrate on other aspects of running a distance trail.  In theroy, the adopters are the "trail promotion reserve."  And the chapterside volunteers are the "trail maintenance reserve."  My idea is that if we can get the adopters together for heavy maintenance, about two times a year, we'll call up the Maintenance Reserve and add everybody into the mix for these projects.

On the flip side, it takes about 9 volunteers to man the shifts when we do trail promotion at a typical 3 day festivals.  The idea is that we'll call the chapterside volunteers first.  And if we can't fill the shifts, we'll then go to the Trail Promotion Reserve.

Currently, we have 3 maintainers on the Whipple Section and 2 on the Road Fork.  Unfortunately, that 5 is out of 20.  But, we picked up one or two? Getting more in the short term is contingent on the condition of my vehicles.    On the chapterside of things, I roughly estimate that we have 5 of 9.  And utilizing the maintenance reserve is also contingent on my vehicle's conditions, but this is more eminent.

To get those trail adopters, the next step is in developing a "Vacant Segment Showcase" on Adventurer's Project's Facebook page and website.  It's a project of mine.  But while I'm out there, I'm also going to work on the project's contribution to the BTA's digital map repository.  It's a fully geotagged, photo catalog of the off-road trail.  It's also a supply of photos for Facebook to get us through the winters.  The audience is media hungry and the winters are difficult to furnish content for. 

I've started it, but I don't have enough content to keep the audience occupied.  But, one good day between the Archer's Fork Loop and Scenic River Trailhead in the Marietta Unit of The Wayne (National Forest) can change that.  I have enough battery power for my smartphone to last 25 miles straight of photo cataloging on one charge.

RV and the Internet, Storage Hooks, Laser Printer

Here in the RV pit, I live in an incorporated area.  So, I get cellular service here and I use my mobile hotspot for the Internet on my laptop.  What you should know is that this will never run Netflix or Hulu well.  That's because my devices get unlimited downstream, but the hotspot only gets 15 gigabytes of download.  For those of you traveling out there, that's in the "fine print" of your cellular package.  Lucky for me, I have two devices.  So, I'm getting 30 gigabytes, but I doubt that will run those said services.  I've never been willing to try it before because I need my download size for other things.

What I do have is off-line videos on an external hard drive.  Because I'm in the motorhome, it needs to be the laptop version of the external because it only needs power from the USB.  The desktop hard disk version has a separate AC to DC cable. 

On another topic, I tried to put some hooks in my motorhome's ceiling to support a folding stool.  As space goes, my ceiling is generally under utilized.  What I discovered is that the dry wall wouldn't support the stool, so I had a project up there that's been on hold until today.  Today, I put some drywall studs up there and screwed the hook into that.

So far, there's three of them.  I need another one to support the seat of the stool.  But I found some paracord, which is something that us hikers carry.  The military version (5/50) is stronger, but that's irrelevant for this project.  I made paracord loops so that the stool could interface with the hooks.  But I'm not willing to let it set overnight with my laptop being right under it and the seat being unsecured.  When the motorhome is in transport, the stool will have to come down because the wiggling of it might crack the ceiling and make the drywall studs come out?  That would cause the stool to come crashing down.

My stool by the way is what I sit on when I play guitar.  And the folding stool is compact. 

Because I'm a volunteer leader, and in light of what I do with the trails, I have a commercial laser printer in the motorhome.  But I made a mistake in getting it down here.  I should have removed the toner cartridge during transport.  Since I didn't, there is now toner particles in the wheels of it causing smudges on my prints.  I can't use it to make fliers at this time.

What happened is when you insert the cartridge, the guides cause it's door to open.  Had I thought that contaminating the inside could be possible, I could have removed it and taped the door shut.  That's probably what should have happened?

2019/05/30

Omnibus May 30th, 2019

The rent-a-car (van) was turned in today.  And I cleaned out the back holding tank (sewage) in my motorhome.  I used both an attachment on the outtake port and wand with a tube and 3 way jet to dislodge the buildup.  All in all, everything took about 15 minutes.  Right now, with the black outtake valve closed, I'm treating the tank overnight.

I used my kitchen gloves to deploy my mouse traps without bait.  I'm hoping that the mouse, or mice get use to it being there?  The next step is to wait and see if they get use to it.  Then I'll use chunky peanut butter as the bait and set the traps.

I just had a look at my kitchen sink faucet replacement.  It looks like the base is exactly the same as the one that's installed on it.  It's a model PF211304 by Phoenix Faucets.  The replacement went fast.

While the water jet intake on the sewage attachment was working, I attempted to install two valves to bypass the motorhome's hot water tank.  They had dual 1/2in male screw on ends.  But this is the second time that I got in trouble with this.  My water lines mount to a 3/8in connection.

Adventurer's Project has supporters who'd want to be more involved.  But some need a ride and I have to get either my motorhome drivable or get my car to turn on.  I've been living in my motorhome and there are things that need to get to storage.  After I cleared the blockage from the motorhome's black tank, I put the wand/ tube in my luggage carrier on the roof.  I probably should have wrapped it in a plastic garbage bag and tied it up.  Since I didn't do that, it looks like I may have a date with a hose, sprayer and some bleach?

2019/05/29

Upcoming Automotive Work, Motorhome Roof Seal Problems

I've had a rented Dodge Caravan for the last day and a half.  Out of all the vehicles that I've rented, this one is my favorite.  I just like how boxy it is and how it holds 7 passengers.  The motorhome's transmission pan gasket is leaking.  I should have the replacement for that as soon as tomorrow?

Last night, I received my catalytic converters for my 2008 Chevy HHR.  I have all the parts that I need now (or I can think of) to completely replace the exhaust.  That excludes the exhaust clamps, but every auto parts store is within walking range.  My plan it to either install the exhaust manifold first, or just put it together and lift up everything at once?

I have a gauge to measure it's fuel pressure.  Under the hood, my car has a schrader valve for this.  I'm pretty foggy on this, but there might be one near the fuel pump, which is on top of the gas tank.  If it does, that would give me an easy indication of what condition the fuel pump is in?

While I had the rental van, I stopped at the Stoney's RV in Cambridge, Ohio and got some two way valves that I'm going to bypass the motorhome's hot water tank with.  Basically, I want the water to bypass the tank on its way to the kitchen sink.  Ever since that cold snap in February, there was some bloating at the kitchen sink faucet.  I now have a replacement.  I'm looking forward to ditching my Aquatainers.  For the last 3 months, I've been using one for drinking water and the other to flush the toilet. 

The roof was sealed with some gray stuff.  it's forming a ridge at the front and back seal and I can't get the motorhome level with it being on.  If I got it level, I could get the stock refrigerator and freezer to work.  But the problem with those gray seals is that if I scraped it, I can get it off the aluminum roof okay.  But I'm worried about the fiberglass body that it's also on?  What needs to happen is something I should have done before.  Roof seam tape needs to be applied.  Then the roof needs to be painted and sealed (I have a product here that does both).

The motorhome has a mouse.  I'm going with traps this time.  But I read online about the mistake I made last time.  Mice have a very good sense of smell.  And if I put down a trap without wearing latex gloves, my sent will be on it and they'll avoid the area.  I just got some kitchen gloves that should do the trick?

2019/05/21

Space Requested - RTA Expo

A reservation for for Adventurer's Project's table and open air tent space was requested on 21 May 2019 from the River's Ales and Trails for their Expo in August.

2019/05/10

Regional+ Transit and 10 Miler Data

I was thinking about publishing data on regional, national and international transit along the North Country Trail.  Considering that the North Country concurrency with Buckeye is 917 of its 1444 miles, I might as well do the rest of Buckeye as well.  But I think that the BT is now in need of a new logistics diagnostic done at the generally 10 mile per day hiking rate.  I think that I last did it using transit and since that site is off-line, I think that the public needs to know how 10 miler comparable this trail is without it?

That's going to entail the updating of my Buckeye Trail custom tracks and map points.  I'll have to sift through the entire circuit's maps and map updates just to make sure everything is current.  And I prefer to do these in the winter if I can?  These are going to be courtesy of Adventurer's Project and available in the "Special Services and Map Repository" section of it's website.

The Regional+ transit data is going to be like a stripped down version of the Ohio Transit Hiker's Resource.  Local transit lines and services will be limited to getting from the regional, national and international amenities to the trail by much fewer ways.  In this case, it makes sense to do the non-transit 10 miler diagnostic first to so I know how to affect the local camping/ lodging situation (if I can).

This particular diagnostic will be on camping amenities alone.  The Buckeye Trail is a camping/ lodging dependent trail.  But lately, the market is demanding camping only.  If this diagnostic serves anything, it might serve to inform the audience that their demand is futile?

2019/04/11

Valve Manifold, Clutch, Adventurer's Project 04/11/2019

I'll be bolting on my 2008 Chevy HHR's valve manifold tomorrow. And as far as I know, I have everything needed to replace my clutch?  I did a little volunteering for the BTA from behind the desk and some work on Adventurer's Project's website and Facebook page. If I end up replacing my clutch soon, I've got enough Facebook content to last us for the next 5 days.

Once that clutch is replaced, I have 5 gallons of gasoline in my Jerry can that's doing nothing but aging.  I'm pretty sure that I have a clogged catalytic converter or two and I'm not too sure about introducing it into the system until next month.  But who knows?

I'm really looking forward to continuing my geotagged photographic cataloging of the trail here.  Last week, I purchased a 20,000mAh power bank, which is an external battery that you attach to something like a smartphone with a USB cable and it acts like is on a charge.  Years ago, I learned that the thru hikers were using them and they got 9 days on airplane mode per charge.  With photo cataloging, I'm looking at getting about 23 miles per charge if I use this, another 5,000mAh external battery and the one that the smartphone has in it.  Since this photographing takes place at every blaze (painted navigational marker when off-road), I don't think there would be enough daylight during the summer equinox to go 23 miles at that rate.  I'm excited.

In total, this is estimated to produce up to about 3400 geotagged photos, taking over 14 gigabytes of hard disk space.  I plan to extract the geotags in some 3rd party software that will convert the pictures in to thumbnails and put them within placemarks/ waypoints (as to the location that they were taken) in something like Google Earth, or ArcGIS software.

This will ultimately benefit our local maintenance and the BTA's Trail Management Team.  In the short term, it's mostly an internal thing.  But some of the photos will be used on Adventurer's Project's website and Facebook page to demonstrate our vacant trail adoption segments.  And during the winters, we'll have some stock footage to use on it's Facebook page.  At that rate, it will take us 36 years to use all of them on Adventurer's Project's Facebook.  But if we start using different social media platforms, that number will diminish.

Viewers, if you have time, please click on Adventurer's Project's Facebook page and like us!

2019/03/26

Smartphone vs Dedicated Hand GPS, Photo Catalog Off-Road Trail,

Normally, you don't want to use a smartphone's GPS to produce data for the public's consumption.  A dedicated hand GPS is a simpler device.  It's power is only committed (for the most part) to one function.  But a smartphone has a CPU, random access memory, internal and perhaps external storage.  It has an antenna for calling, text and data.  Then it has hardware for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, a much larger screen and then it's GPS antenna.  The smartphone's power is more diverted than a dedicated hand GPS.  In comparison, it's as energy efficient as the dedicated device can be.  And with all this stuff being "crammed" in one form, it's likely that any given hand GPS has a larger antenna?  On the internal side of things, that alone goes a long way to making tracks and waypoints more accurate. 

The other considerations are usually atmospheric.  For instance, the sky needs to be partly sunny or better in order to accurately record GPS positions.  And very best time to record these is at night under a clear sky.  This is because the sun is not out causing interference in the upper atmosphere with the satellite reception.  However, that' not usually an option with distance trail volunteers.  On-road, you might not want to be caught "lurking around" while trying to get a fix on a location.  And night hiking is slow, more strenuous and there are plenty of tripping hazards.

Hikers, really don't need to worry about this.  With a 15,000mAh power bank, they can extend the length of their smartphone usage by as much as 9 days on airplane mode.  But the power banks are known to be heavy, so there's a trade off that should be theirs to consider.

I started photo cataloging the Road Fork and Whipple Sections of the Buckeye Trail (North Country concurrent).  It's a project that's output would mostly be consumed internally.  The photos are geotagged, which means that when you use 3rd party software, it produces a waypoint in Google Earth with the pictures embedded in them.  And those waypoints are positioned according to the global coordinates that were recorded by the camera.  Smartphone's have the capability.  First the "locater" must be enabled for GPS functions.  Then as a safety, it has to be enabled in the camera's settings as well.

Considering the volunteerism that I've done with this project so far, I can say that the battery in my Samsung Galaxy Note 8 SM-N950U will last for 3 miles one way on hilly and curvy trail if a picture was taken at every blaze.  I have a 5,000mAh power bank that should get me 3 miles out and back.  Then today, I remembered that my laptop has a USB port that is always on.  I don't know if it's always on on battery mode, but if it is and I get an anti-static sealing bag for it, I might be able to "steal," or transfer power from it's battery to the smartphone's?

The last one that I did was 2.2 miles in one direction and I took 204 geotagged photos at 16:9 picture ratio, which is at about 9.1 megabytes per file.  The total project is estimated to be about 3,340 photos and be 29 gigabytes in hard disk size.  Right now, I'm having concerns about the thumbnails used in Google Earth.  That application can only handle 400 megabytes of data at once.  So with the data being broken down between map points, the total file size can't be more than 200 megabytes.  Seeing to this, while keeping the photos at adequate at quality might be challenging?  But actually being out and doing this was actually easier than I originally thought.

I am a volunteer with the Buckeye Trail Association.  I volunteer with a functions under the executive staff.  I'm a non-voting member of the Trail Management Team.  And I'm volunteer supervisor of the Whipple Section.  I usually contribute to it's Facebook group daily.

In 3rd party to that, I lead the Adventurer's Project.  We don't have a corp of officers yet.  Things are very new, so most of it is run by me still.  I'm the admin of it's Facebook page and usually contribute to it daily.  With all it's functions combined, my being the only one isn't the way it should be.  Maybe you might call me a "Super Volunteer" because I'm more of an "orange" than an apple.  I want Adventurer's Project's volunteerism to be measured more by them's than me's.  In fact, there's no measurement. 

If you have a moment, please like Adventurer's Project on Facebook.

2019/03/13

Oil Valve Manifold and Auxiliary Battery Re-Charge Continued

The Haynes repair manual for my 2008 Chevy HHR LS wanted me to torque the oil valve manifold bolts to 89ft lbs.  I got my torque wrench ready today and as I did this, I snapped two bolts in the engine manifold.  Haynes' torque specifications must be talking out it's behind.  It certainly wasn't that hard to get oil valve manifold off.  In ignorance, I was taking Haynes' word for it, but now I think I should have known better?  It was the first time working with my digital torque adapter.  Now, I'm going to have to get them replaced and find a way to get out what in the engine side holes.

The battery charger that I'm using is a Carquest CQ-80CR.  From yesterday's log, this morning, it read an error code of FO5.  Last night, I had both deep cycle marine batteries hooked up to simultaneously charge.  I'm not sure if my little 8amp charger can really handle the load?

2019/03/12

Oil Valve Manifold Gasket, Seals Grommets and Auxiliary Battery Recharging

When the 5th leak happened in the motorhome, it was right above the kitchen table where I had the laptop.  It was leaking from the plastic surrounding the front roof hatch.  So, I place the laptop on a towel with the keyboard upside down because that was what got wet.  Shortly then after, a second leak from the roof hatch started pelting down on the table where near where the laptop was and got its underside wet.  So, I not only had to keep in on the towel for 24 hours... no, I put it on a towel in an unaffected area for 48 because I had to change it's resting position to make sure that any water inside the laptop either left out through the keyboard, or on its side through the CPU's breathing gills.

Suffice to say that I tested all the keys except for the "F" ones.  I couldn't test the F keys because I'd probably have to go through about 5 different applications just to test them.

I just replaced the oil valve gaskets and I'm in the middle of finishing up the gromets.  My tool kits contain just about everything that has ever been needed for my 2008 Chevy HHR LS.  And I don't usually miss not having a small, thin, flat screw driver.  But today, I was having to use a razor blade to cut the old gromets off, then fitting the new ones around some flanges with my fingers.  There are  15 of these and they have given my hands a workout.

The coil for spark plug #4 is showing a little antifreeze.  It looks like I'll be doing a cylinder head gasket replacement in the near future?  But tearing down the oil valve cover wasn't a big deal, it just took the better part of today and this was my first time doing one.  I've looked at the procedure regarding the cylinder head gasket and I'm comfortable now with doing it myself.

With certainty, I'm sure that my clutch master cylinder is gone.  My clutch pedal goes to the floor and doesn't come back.  That might have been one of the leaks that I observed when I changed the car's oil about a week ago?  And I also noted proper brake pedal pressure, which is something I haven't had in a long time. 

When I last did the oil change about a week ago, I used a couple ounces of sea foam to try and solve some idle problems.  But I wasn't getting a dip stick reading after I turned the car on.  I had it up on ramps and when I saw it spitting what I thought was oil, I immediately shut it off and waited about a week, which is today.  The problem is that I'm not sure what the Seafoam has done with it sitting.  I was using it to temporarily seal my gaskets.  It really hasn't gone through the system, so, I'm going to replace the oil again just to be on the safe side.

If I just had an hour more, I could have finished the job.  I got a late start today because I had a medical appointment this morning.  My AC powered battery charger has not been up to the task of charging my motorhome's auxiliary batteries, which are dual marine deep cycles.  So, I did what I've done before, which is hook them up to jumper cables, attach those to the motorhome's cab batteries and run it for about 90 minutes.  I had ever breaker on my converter switched off and my interior lights came on using the batteries.

My car has a 50amp fuse for my batteries and it's alternator is smaller.  But seeing if the motorhome's amperage is similar, my AC charger only puts out 8amps.  Currently, it's charging both deep cycles and is reading as "LO" or low.  I'm content to leave it connected to the marine batteries over night and see what it does?

It wouldn't do them when they were dead.  All it read overnight was a moving "8," which is when the unit is initializing.  But with them jumped, the charging light is on.

All in all, everything that's going on alright.  Even if I have to do a Oil Valve, Cylinder Head Gaskets, and a clutch, it's just things that have been put off since my back was messed up.  But my therapy ended 3 weeks ago and after a day of working on it now, I feel great.

2019/03/09

5th Leak - Motorhome

The motorhome just took on its 5th leak today. The laptop got some of it. I have its keyboard upside down on a towel for the next 24 hours as is standard proceedure.  I also went up on top of the roof and used a broom to get the pooling rain water swept off. There was quite a bit near the front roof hatch where the new leak is.

Two days ago, I adjusted the level in under the rear right of the motorhome. I barely increased the height back there. That might have been what caused the water to pool at the front hatch.

Assuming that it rains when its colder in the day before, I'm just waiting for a string of 70°F days to reseal the roof.

2019/02/28

Car Repair and Adventurer's Project's Upcoming Needs

My car needs at least an oil manifold and timing chain gasket.  I think I might be able to have them in in the next few days.  I have a low profile jack coming that strong enough to lift the motorhome if needed on Wednesday from Indianapolis.

Here's a couple things that we have coming up... Adventurer's Project needs to get new trail adopters in the Marietta Unit of The Wayne (National Forest).  AP Facebook page is starting to get more participation and the audience, like all Facebook audiences are media hungry.  In order to do a better job at volunteer procurement, be it on the Facebook page, or otherwise is to produce what I call a "Vacant Segment Showcase."  I've been involved here for about 4 years.  During the first two, I kept my nose out of the Road Fork Section for the most part.  I was usually too busy to take any pictures on maintenance.  And I was hesitant to start this showcase before because I wanted the photos to be under green foliage.  But I think that I'm going to override that and get them going sooner than later anyways?

Another thing is somebody in the region once tied to make a correlation between the area's flood and certain other sites in the area to determine when they'll flood from a computer.  I believe that their intentions were good, but I think that I have better method?  This involves using a car, smartphone, coming in and out of cellular data signal and monitoring the sties in person before and during flood conditions.

The ones that I want to test are:

- the gauge at Macksburg of Washington County, Ohio vs the conditions of the ODNR concrete ford near Whipple 15 (10/2010 map).

- the gauge at Macksburg and south of Whipple (community of) verses the conditions at Whipple 13 (10/2010 map)

- the guage at Bloomfield verses the conditions near Road Fork Section - Point 21 (7/2011 map)/ Ring Mill Campground/ Walter Ring House and Mill Site and between Whipple 05 - 06, which for the latter, would require hiking about 1.5mi beyond the treeline to access the east side of the Little Muskingum River Flats, which the trail there is lower in elevation.

This will entail hundreds of miles of driving as I'd be going from site to site in large circles encompassing all of the Road Fork Section and 1/2 of the Whipple Section.  It's going to be back and forth for hours on end between these sites.

This can't be planned and I have to be ready to go on a moments notice.  There may also be a question along Wolf Run.  That waterway is dammed just north of the Road Fork Section, but there question may be about the effect of the nearby West Branch Duck Creek as it could back feed and flood Wolf Run onto the near by road that the Road Fork Section is routed on?  Such a flood would have to also flow over a 50 yard wide grass strip between the run and the road.

Could locations on the Northwest Tier of the Whipple Section flood?  Perhaps.  Whipple 20 - 21 would be the most susceptible.  But these are the kind of streams and fingers the feed flood waters into larger ones.  And doing this would have to use flood gauges on the Muskingum River, which are at much lower elevation and could be much less reliable?

What this data could do can be divided into those with smartphones and those without.  For those with, they could hike into cellular signal, log on to Adventurer's Project's website.  With the bit of research that I can do, I may be able to tell them when sites on the trail are flooded based upon the levels of the nearby gauges.  For those without, my visual observations may be able to determine what the waterway's height, or width would have to be in order to flood a nearby portion of trail?

The Whipple Section has a Dry Boot Bypass written into it's map.  It's unmarked, but it's there because if the concrete ford near Whipple 15 is flooded, it's illegal to cross it.  I've heard of the Duck Creek sweeping four wheel drive vehicles into the creek there.  The problem is in the counter clockwise direction.  There's no problem with the clockwise direction because the ford is immediately after Whipple 15.  You can see if the creek is flooding the ford without making the turn on to the next road.  But the counter clockwise traffic has to hike over 2 miles from the intersection with the Dry Boot Bypass before they see it.

Whipple 13 can be under water where it's right next to the Duck Creek.  If it's under water, a high ground by-pass would have to be devised.  Considering that I've seen one of the local highways nearby flood, I'm not sure that this could be done.  It could be a logistical problem with overnight amenities?  And in that case, we may have enough information to tell the hiker to take a zero day (a day off) and wait for it to recede?