2018 Travels travel blog

Carpes at Elkhart (IN) Campgrounds

Entering Illinois on I 80

Carpe Diem marks milestone (100,000 of them!)

Appproaching Illinois Toll Authority Toll Booth

Yea, it's our turn to pay the usurious fee

Entering Indiana on I 94

Entering Michigan on I 94

Entering Indiana (again) on IN 19

Leon removes our fridge for repairs
This is not an easy job, but...

We visited the Motorhome Museum and Hall of Fame

Centennial Charlie (driving) and Charlene (on top of trailer)
These bears toured the...

A 1937 Hunt "Housecar"

Bob and a Studebaker truck
Bob owned a "Studie" in his youth

Wed, 01 Aug: A new month and a milestone...

The year 2018 is more behind us than ahead. Can you believe that it is already August?

Today we not only welcome Caesar's month but today's drive celebrated Carpe Diem's 100,000th mile. The odometer marked the event at cruising speed eastbound on Interstate 80 in western Illinois. To Carpe it was a non-event as she just rumbled her way down the interstate.

After a very successful visit to HWH Corporation's Factory Service facility we're continuing on our "service tour". At HWH they completely checked, serviced, and adjusted the hydraulic systems that operate Carpe's leveling and room slide systems. The bill for the entire service was less than $100. Almost unheard of in the world of RV repair.

We hooked up the car and Bob pulled out of the HWH lot at 0840. We were quickly on I 80 eastbound, and west of the Quad Cities took the I 280 bypass. Once we crossed the Mississippi River and entered Illinois we rejoined I 80 and continued east. It was shortly after rejoining I 80 that Carpe achieved the aforementioned 100k miles.

We stopped for fuel at a Pilot/Flying J in Morris IL. While Sandi took care of filling the diesel tank, Bob tended to lunch at the attached Subway. Both tasks were completed about the same time and we were back on the road a few minutes before noon.

We stopped at a rest area a few miles east and consumed said subs. Back on the interstate Sandi closed in on the Chicago area and it's dreaded traffic/tolls/and general insanity. We aren't big fans of big cities but some, Chicago among them, rank high on our "try to avoid" list. Alas, on this trip time is of the essence so we bit the bullet and did it.

Interstate 80 doesn't actually get close to Chicago at all, but close enough for us. East of the toll ($2.70 for coach and car) we joined up with I 90/94 to create a multi-lane highway of weaving vehicles, stop and go traffic, and general bedlam. Sandi employed the "glacier method" of driving—maintain course and speed and let the insanity flow around us...

Instead of taking the Indiana I 80/90 tollway we stayed on I 94 into Michigan and then took U.S. 12 east. It is roughly the same distance and U.S. 12 is a beautiful drive. It runs just north of the MI/IN line so when we reached IN 19 we took it south a half dozen miles into Elkhart. We arrived at the Elkhart Campgrounds a quarter past three (Central time) and were soon settled into our full hookup site.

Today's trip covered 297 miles with an overall fuel economy of 8½ mpg.

Thu, 02 Oct: We have a Fridge!!!

Early (much too early) this morning we were up and got Carpe ready to travel. Bob rolled wheels around 0650 and headed east toward Shipshewana. Sandi followed in the car. We arrived at National RV Refrigeration around 0730 and, as we had been told, waited for Leon to arrive. The time wasn't for naught as we used it to prepare and enjoy our breakfast.

Leon got started around 0900 and got the fridge going again. It did not trip the fuse so he started digging for the gremlin that had been doing so. After some sleuthing he found a leak in the ice maker fill line that was spraying water down the back of the fridge. The water was wetting the cooling fans and then ran thru the control board enclosure. He theorized that the water was shorting out the fans and/or control board blowing the fuse.

He would have to remove the fridge to make the necessary repairs to the ice maker water line. Sandi insisted on having her ice maker and Bob, ever the dutiful hubby, agreed. He had other work scheduled so it wasn't till after lunch that the fridge got removed, the water line replaced, two new (and improved) fans installed, and the fridge reinstalled and running. While he was at it, at our request, he also replaced the two auxiliary cooling fans with the new and improved (ball bearings and half the amperage draw but with higher efficiency cooling.)

We pulled out of National RV Refrigeration and were back at our campsite by 1600. It was a long day but we have a level of confidence in the fridge and the job Leon did for us.

Tue, 07 Aug: We play tourist...

Our last full day in Elkhart. We decided to visit the Motorhome Museum and Hall of Fame located in Elkhart. We're life members so we get in "free". Yea!

There have been few changes since our last visit a few years back so we spent an hour or so. They're doing a good job keeping things fresh looking and clean. Following lunch we returned to the coach to get things ready for the road.

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