Worst Vacation Ever - Page 5 - Fiberglass RV

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Old 06-02-2014, 10:40 PM   #57
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Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1977, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Posts: 5,563
It was not all bad

This is a picture of most of us. My wife is taking the picture. This is about 1/2 hr from my dad's place. Almost there.

One of the few pictures I have of 13-1101043 after I did the belly band, almost.
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2013 Arival on Manitoulin Island.jpg  

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Old 10-20-2014, 11:47 PM   #58
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Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1977, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Posts: 5,563
This story now has an ending.

This summer, besides doing the windows on my sons trailer, I also went to Ontario to try to fix the van. I had a plan. I was sure that since every other part of the ignition system had been changed, except for the spark plugs, and the spark plug wires, it must be ether a connector problem, wiring, or grounding. So with the factory service manual, and a spare set of connectors for the computer, (Vehicle Control Module, (VCM))

I booked two weeks of vacation and I set out for Ontario. I flew into Toronto. I was greeted by Roy and Carole Ann in TO. They are the greatest folks. They have been holding onto three spare tire covers for me. I spent some time with them before Roy gave me a ride to the Greyhound station. The bus leaves Toronto 12:30 am. At 8:30 am I was in Espanola, where I met up with my dad and his wife.
I immediately started disassembling the van. First I removed the computer, and tested every pin on the connectors. They were all good. This was a great disappointment to me. I was sure that was the problem. Oh well. Onto the grounds. With the help of the service manual, I located all the grounds, they were all in good shape. I tried to wiggle the wires into every connector that is associated with the ignition system in an attempt to get it to fail. No luck. I pulled apart the dash in the hope that something would jump out at me. Nope. OK, I give up!

My sister said that she had a mechanic that she trusted. JK Automotive in Kagawang. Joe Moor is his name. He can be reached at (705)-282-2277, (CARS). So, I drove the van there. It was almost an hour away, so I was taking a risk. Just to point that out, I went over a bump in the road, and the engine died. I coasted for about 5 seconds and went over another bump.... engine is back. I made it to Joe and told him that the entire ignition system had been changed, so lets look elsewhere. Luckily, the van died for him. He said that was good, because it is difficult to fix it if it is not broken. For the next three days I waited, calling often. It never ran more then 1 hour while it idled in his parking lot. Since the gas was now more then a year old, I was kinda surprised it ran at all. The big difference between him and McQuaries is that he took the time to test it. They just changed parts and told me to come and get it.

He tried changing the crank sensor, that was not it. He rewired the ignition system, in case some wires had been damaged. No luck. He was getting quite frustrated. He has a guy that is an electrical consultant for GM. His guy said it was either the computer, or the ignition control module. I had to get back to Calgary. I told him that I would try to locate the parts online and have them sent to him. Then it was back to Calgary on the bus. 40 hours later I was in Calgary. 40 hours on the bus is not fun.

I had earlier located a computer on ebay. They program it to the serial number of the van. $70 US. Came to $135 CDN with shipping and exchange. It took me ~1hr to remove, and re-install the computer. Some background, McQuarries charged me for 4 hours, and like $500 for the computer. Since this was not a part available from GM, the computer they sold me was also an aftermarket unit. I also located an Ignition Control Module (ICM) for $10, including delivery. That is not a typo, TEN DOLLARS. The ignition control module is right under the inside engine cover of the van, easy to change. McQuarries charged me $600 including labor for that. Joe tells me he gets the part for $50. They also changed the rotor and cap, another ~$600.

The new ICM didn't fix it, but the new computer did. That was it. The first part that McQuarries put in was defective, (and over priced). The rotor, cap and ICM were never the problem. Joe charged me less then $600. I am sure he spent more time on it then that, as well as the new crank sensor. I should mention that when I brought it in, he was swamped, yet he found time between jobs to work on my van. A good mechanic. I would recommend him to anyone.

I book another week of vacation, good thing I get four weeks vacation. So, it was back on the bus for me. I met a great guy named Dick on the bus. The trip goes a lot faster when the conversation is interesting. But 40 hours is still a long time. I got to Espanola and was met by my dad and his wife again. Deja vu. I hooked up the trailer, and then spent the night at my dad's.

I left Calgary on Saturday morning. Two days on the bus, and a day at dad's. It was Tuesday morning when I left, and Sunday I was to be on a plane for Pittsburgh. I had another class to attend. Not much time. I pushed hard. The van ran flawlessly. The drive through northern Ontario in the fall was beautiful. I actually got to Calgary on Thursday. Lots of time to recover. I am posting this from Pittsburgh.

Kind of an anticlimactic end, but I am fine with that.

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Old 10-21-2014, 02:04 AM   #59
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Name: Jim
Trailer: 2017 Escape 5.0 TA
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Glad you finally got it all worked out, Dave. Hopefully it now continues to give you great service for years to come.
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“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” — Abraham Lincoln
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Old 10-21-2014, 04:08 AM   #60
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The end of a saga, good write up.
Never in doubt, often wrong
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Old 10-21-2014, 04:53 AM   #61
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I admire your tenacity. Raz
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Old 10-21-2014, 05:24 AM   #62
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Name: Dave
Trailer: Bigfoot
Newfoundland & Labrador
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Sometimes, when it is a family affair, we do our best to get there, for their sake and ours. Sometimes the fates are not kind.
Scouter Dave.
Embark upon this journey with enthusiasm and eagerness.
If we were expected to remain in one place we would have been created with roots
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Old 10-21-2014, 08:32 AM   #63
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Name: Phil
Trailer: 1977 Trillium 4500 (previously a 1978 Trillium 4500, Rpod 171 and Surveyor SV251)
Nova Scotia
Posts: 210
..... and the moral of the story is????......

.... don't attend family reunions?!!
77 Trillium 4500
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Old 10-21-2014, 03:09 PM   #64
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Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1977, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Posts: 5,563
Moral? Ummmm........ Nope, I'm drawing a blank.

Maybe, The best laid plans often go astray.
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Old 10-21-2014, 05:34 PM   #65
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Name: Carol
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British Columbia
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Glad you where able to report a fairly happy ending to this story Dave... all be it a costly one both in time and $$'s
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Old 10-21-2014, 07:39 PM   #66
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I think the moral of the story is, replacing a part doesn't necessarily mean it's no longer the problem. I had it happen on a computer power supply once. They replaced it 3 times before they got one that wasn't defective. Of course it was different because they could tell it was the power supply that was failing (from the fireworks and smoke!). I'm glad you finished the story (and that you finally got the problem solved!) Best wishes for great travels in future.
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Old 10-21-2014, 09:40 PM   #67
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Name: Roger
Trailer: 2009 Trillium 1300 "Homelet"/2014 Subaru Outback "Rosie"
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Talking An old saying

"Mistakes come and mistakes go, but to really foul things up, requires a computer."

BTW: As a representative of McQuaries, I wonder if you would be willing to write us a reccomendation for our fine service.

(Only Kidding)

The French have a saying: "Recherchez l'ordinateur."
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Old 10-22-2014, 06:02 AM   #68
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Glad to hear it all worked out Dave. Were you able to tow the Launch Pad back with you?
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Old 10-22-2014, 11:17 AM   #69
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Name: Tim
Trailer: '88 Scamp 16, layout 4
North Florida
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I am reminded of an issue I had long ago in High School with an old F-100 pickup. I had just done a "tune up" (points, plugs, condenser, rotor, etc.) and it ran intermittently after that. Luckily for me, one of the places it died left me rolling (literally) into the Montgomery Ward Auto Service Center parking lot, where my High School Shop Teacher worked a second job. He came out and looked at it and after rummaging through his tool box came back with an old condenser. It fired right up and ran great from then on. He left me with this pearl of wisdom; “if a condenser is working do not change it”. But that tidbit does me no good now as I do not think any of the new stuff has condensers! Come to think of it, I know a lot about broken, obsolete equipment!
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Old 10-22-2014, 11:45 AM   #70
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Name: Norm and Ginny
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Originally Posted by Timber Wolf View Post

“if a condenser is working do not change it”.
The "if it's working, leave it alone" rule is a good one.

Norm and Ginny

2014 Honda Odyssey
1991 Scamp 16
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