Thursday, March 11, 2010

Our first SKP park

We are at the RoVers' Roost SKP co-op, several miles west of Casa Grande, Arizona (map). Uncharacteristically, we are in a full hookup site ($15) rather than the boondock area ($5, with the first night free).

We are here visiting our friends Tom and Kathleen. We did just see them less than two weeks ago, at our Red Cross meeting in Tucson, but we did not really get a chance to spend time and catch up. Kathleen is in a leg cast, limiting their mobility, and we took the hookup site to be basically right next door to them, since we were providing dinner one night. With night time temperatures in the low 40s, though, it was nice to have the power for the heaters, and our poor tired batteries needed the rest and full recharge.

Speaking of the batteries, my fix to the terminal posts resulted in only a minor improvement; it looks like we will need a new set of batteries. A friend of ours who carries Deka batteries can get us a set for 10% over his cost, which we can pick up at any East Penn distribution center. That will bring the cost of a new set down to under $3K, after cores and tax. There is a distributor in Phoenix, and if I can find some help there to get the batteries in and out, that's probably where we will get them. I'm also going to need eight sets of post adaptors, as the Dekas have only automotive terminals, while the Trojans they will replace also had threaded post terminals. I have to say I am very disappointed in the Trojans. One upside to the Dekas is that they are higher capacity, bringing the bank up to 980 amp-hours, from 920.

We've had a nice visit. We made dinner on Tuesday night, and Tom cooked for us last night. In addition to sitting around chatting, I managed to get Louise's scooter repaired yesterday during the nicer part of the afternoon. I used my Dremel to clean up the burrs and rough edges on the existing half-pulley fins; it did not look badly enough damaged not to re-use. We had three sets of eyeballs on it before coming to that conclusion. After torquing the pulley nut as far as my impact driver would go, I made a pair of punch marks on the nut and spindle, and we'll open the case back up in another few hundred miles to see if there has been any relative movement, in order to avoid a repeat. While I was under there, I also blinged out her scoot with a set of ultra-bright blue LED strips facing the ground, replacing the wimpy ones we put in months ago that you couldn't even see.

In a short while we will head out for the Phoenix area, likely to stay at one of the casinos. While we enjoy the company of our friends, we are a bit out of place here, as it is really a senior park (they assured us that they were permitted a certain percentage of non-senior overnighters). It is also the sort of campground that is the antithesis of what we normally seek, with spaces right next to each other and arranged in neat rows. It is also in the middle of nowhere, which is great for a more rustic setting, but not so good for what amounts to a trailer park. In over five years of being Escapees, this is our first stay in one of their cooperative parks.

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