Hey, It’s Not All Camping at a Winery Sipping Merlot. Mostly…but not All.

In all the research we’ve done about rolling across the country with a travel trailer everyone always says, “Look, it’s an earthquake in there as you roll down bumpy roads, and things are going to break.”

So, early report, we’ve had two minor issues with Dewey (our 30 foot Arctic Fox travel trailer). First, and most humorous, on day 2 of testing near Anacortes Karin was locking the back door. She carefully put her key in the door lock, turned, and gently pulled the key out. Then she looked at the key, and saw that the entire locking mechanism was still on her key…no longer in the door. Minor issue as the door still had the deadbolt for locking purposes. Humorous as Karin swears, “I was being so careful.”

So we called our dealer, and he said, “That’s not good.” We were about to leave, going by the folks at Apache in Everett, so he asked us to swing in on Saturday and they would put a new lock on. Took more time to get off the freeway than it did to get the lock replaced. The tech did it so fast, you could miss it if you blinked. So far, high marks for Apache.

The second issue was a little more troublesome. We stopped at my brothers near Astoria, Oregon for a night, setting up in front of his house. The next morning, checking tires (pressure and lugs ever day you move) I noticed the right rear tire was down to 60psi. It should be 80. No worries…we’ve got a compressor and I pumped it up. I checked during the drive to Cape Kiawanda that day, and we didn’t loose air. Three days later we were getting ready to leave, and again that tire was low. Hmm. I pumped it up and we drove to Suzi’s ranch in Yoncolla for a night. Again the next morning….low. All other tires were great. More hmmm. This has to be looked at.

Did I mention I love Les Schwab Tire Centers.

We pumped up the tire and took off South to visit Angelo near Medford, but Karin looked up where we could find the first Les Schwab. Turns out it was in Sutherlin, about 16 miles ahead.

So we called ahead, and they said, “Sure, just pull around the building and line up on the big bays for trucks and RVs.” We got there in minutes, and while Karin talked to the desk, I pulled around. We had to wait….about 5 minutes. Then John the tire tech motioned us forward.

Dewey in the dock

He crawled under to carefully place the jack, lifted Dewey just enough and popped off the tire. He dropped it in the water tank to find the bubbles, pulled it out and headed into the shop.

Five minutes later, he was back, bouncing the tire beside him. Bottom line, we picked up a nail somewhere and that was the cause of the slow leak.

Needless to say, he plugged it, and now it’s holding pressure like a champ. John spun the tire on the hub, pulled out the torque wrench to get the factory setting right, and said, “Just check those lugs in about 50 miles to be sure nothing comes loose.”

When I said, “ok, I’ll go inside to handle the bill.” He just laughed and said, “No, no charge for that. Just enjoy the sun today on the road.”

Did I mention these are factory installed Goodyear tires. Yeah, no worries. Now, of course, you know why everyone in the NW eventually ends up at Les Schwab Tires.

That’s it. Those are the only early mechanical/technical issues to report. I know other things will go wrong….but not yet.

The rest really is camping at a winery sipping Merlot.

Consumnes River Farm, Lodi, CA

One thought on “Hey, It’s Not All Camping at a Winery Sipping Merlot. Mostly…but not All.

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