Sunday, July 26, 2015

The Best-laid Plans....Gang Aft Agley...Again!

Well, as it turns out Tuesday evening was only the mid-point of our brake/wheel problems.  On Wednesday Val and his guys came out to our home-away-from-home at Royal RV Park and installed new brakes on the RV and mounted our spare to replace the missing wheel.

They also found out why the brakes overheated in the first place.  After trying unsuccessfully to get the new brakes to operate correctly, Val crawled under the truck and discovered that when the new truck bed was installed in Mount Pleasant, the welder accidentally melted the return air line from the brakes.  Now, I’m not a mechanic, and you probably aren’t either.  However I can understand that once the trailer’s air brakes were applied, they could not be completely released because the air had no where to go.  For the several miles before we discovered they were overheating, the brakes were partially on.  We are just very fortunate that John could tell something “just wasn’t right” with the way the rig was handling and disconnected the air lines to the trailer brakes.  Otherwise the overheated brakes could have caused a fire that probably would have destroyed not only the RV, but the Volvo and Tracker as well.  

While waiting for the work to be done, we amused ourselves throwing balls for the dogs, and admiring the mama llama and her almost-grown child 

and the mares and foals in the next pasture.  

This little paint filly was especially curious and not at all shy about coming up to the fence to say hello.  

She was a good photographic subject, as well.

There were plenty of Mississippi kites in Snyder, as well.  They feed primarily on grasshoppers and dragonflies, so this dove wasn’t afraid to perch nearby.

The brake job was finished late afternoon, and we decided (wisely!) to wait until Thursday to leave Snyder.  On Thursday morning, we pulled out and stopped ten miles or so down the road to check the temperature on the newly-installed brakes.  Again, we found that one wheel was hotter than the others, indicating that we still had a problem.  Val and his mechanics came out immediately and determined that the brake had a bad caliper.  (Now, I’m not sure exactly how a caliper works, but I do know that it’s the thingy that engages and disengages the brake so it’s very important.)  Since there wasn’t a replacement part available, we decided to remove the caliper and do without the brake on that one trailer wheel.  Since there are five others working, plus the brakes on the Volvo, we’ll be just fine until we get back to Austin and can replace it.

We left after lunch on Thursday and got as far as Lubbock, enjoying views of a greener-than-usual Texas Panhandle on the way.

Then, yesterday we made the 300-mile trip to Santa Fe.  As we got closer, the herds of calico cattle were joined by groups of pronghorn antelope.  

We arrived in Santa Fe Friday afternoon, and are camped in our favorite Santa Fe destination, Los Suenos RV park on Cerritos Road, just across from our friends, Bob and Geri.  We look forward to getting reacquainted with one of our favorite cities and eating some of that great New Mexico cuisine while we are here!

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