Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Well, we are still at Les Schwab in Livermore.

Not unexpected, really, but somewhat disappointing. To his credit, James from Les Schwab spent a couple hours on the phone this morning trying to track down valve stems that would work. I have to admit, I never knew there were so many different valve stems on the market, or that the variation in stem mounting from wheel to wheel was so great.

Our stems are a metric item (since we have European wheels) that have a part number of 70MS-7, which means they have an overall length of 70mm, and a 7 degree bend in them. The bend has been the kicker -- we need ones that are straight, or that have enough length after the bend for the cores to fit properly. Our particular wheels also have very thick aluminum in the region of the stem mounting hole -- .550" vs. .340" for the standard Alcoa items. Apparently, the MS part numbers have enough thread on them to accommodate this thickness, unlike the vast majority of valve stems on the market.

James found some 90MS-27 parts in Oregon, which might work. I had Alcoa technical support on the phone, and they found some 41MS-00 parts in Ohio which also should work (though they will be very, very short). We are having both kinds overnighted, so they should be here by 10:30 tomorrow morning. When they get here, we will test-fit each type in the wheel and see which one will work the best, then install those on all six wheels. That should take a couple hours, so we'll be here until noonish tomorrow at least.

What all this means is that we will likely not be able to take the coast route to San Luis, unless we leave here close to noon on the dot. Instead we will take 101 down the Salinas valley, which is still a pretty route, especially with things so green right now.

Louise, statistics geek that she is, has been working all evening on estimating the number of full-timers in the US. Apparently, the US Census web sites have been giving her grief, more so than they used to when she owned Information Publications. She's been muttering about it for the last hour or so... In any case, I heard her calculations over dinner, and she thinks it's much closer to a quarter million people than to the one to two million number that is often arbitrarily bandied about in full-timer circles. I believe her -- the lower number makes much more sense, and this used to be her business, after all. We think the larger number has developed as sort of an urban legend, or maybe that should be a campground legend.

I spent part of today wiring up one of the replacement linear actuators I bought for the leveling system, so I can install it tomorrow while the wheels are off. Accessing the ride-height arm will be much easier with the wheels out of the way, and getting the darned thing out by slithering between the wheels on my back was a claustrophobic and nervous experience.

1 comment:

  1. The photos are a wonderful new addition!

    I hope you get past those bus problems, and get back to the more enjoyable side of your full-timer existence.

    So, "full-timer" is short for what, exactly?


Share your comments on this post! We currently allow anyone to comment without registering. If you choose to use the "anonymous" option, please add your name or nickname to the bottom of your comment, within the main comment box. Getting feedback signed simply "anonymous" is kind of like having strangers shout things at us on the street: a bit disconcerting. Thanks!