Flipped My Lid

Well….not me but my back truck did.

Passenger Side

It took Joe and I over five (5) hours to hook up yesterday.

We left the house at about 8 a.m.  It was nice and cool outside, a slight breeze wafted that felt really good.

When we arrived at the Coldiron yard in Oklahoma City our trucks were no where to be seen.  Upon checking with the yard guy we learned the Peterbilts were not ready yet.  Come back after lunch and they would be ready.

Joe and I went back to the Ford Garage to have them check on the windshield washer fluid reservoir.  Oh, before I go there….we got our pickup out of the Ford Garage on Thursday.  Seems one of the injector cups had a crack in it. One so fine that it took quite a bit of work by the repair person to suss it out.  Once he did  some mechanic guy work and isolated the injector whooz-it stuff, then pressurized the system he found the leak.  Couldn’t miss it then, the diesel fuel came spraying out everywhere from the crack.  Took them three days to get it fixed and all put back together.

When Joe looked under the hood to see where they had been working he found a cover mat thing missing and there were some spare parts in the engine compartment.  Joe found the shop manager and had a talk with him, the mat was located and the spare parts were talked about at great length by Joe, the manager, and two of the mechanics.  Guess they all decided that the spare parts were no longer necessary because we paid the bill – $1,545.00 and left.

Okay, back to Friday and our trucks not in the yard.  I had tried to use the windshield washer before we left home, to no avail.  I had a bottle of fluid in the back of my Isuzu Trooper and Joe poured it in, which it promptly ran out on his feet.  Ah, I didn’t need to see where I was going anyway.

So back to the Ford garage to have that looked after.  A mechanic guy came, had a look, did something under the hood, poured another gallon of fluid in the reservoir and told us we were ready to go.  About a mile and a half later Joe tried to use the windshield washer.  No squirts.  Make a U-Turn and head back to the garage for further investigation.

The shop manager comes out and takes a look.  He pours another gallon of fluid in the reservoir.  Result…his feet got wet this time.  He called a mechanic over and that person reached into the engine compartment and did some fiddling.  Seems the hose had come off.  He reconnected the hose, poured in a gallon of fluid (now this is the 4th gallon of fluid).  Joe turned the key on and tried the washer business.  The mechanics feet got wet and he watched as the hose shot clean off the reservoir.

When all the diesel had been spraying out of the injector cup it had spewed on the windshield washer hose doo hickey, thus causing the rubber to swell and become misshapen.  The fix…a tie wrap.  It would be another two hours to get a new hose installed to solve the problem and Joe didn’t want to wait that long.

By this time we had eaten up most of the morning.  Time to go get some lunch then meander back to Coldiron and see if our trucks were in the yard.  Upon arrival there were three in the yard.  Only two had the assigned VIN numbers we were to take.  Several phone calls later and a lot of “Okay.  Yes we can do that.  If that is good with you.” went on Joe’s end of the conversation.  We were to take what came out of the lot and into the bull pen.  The fourth one would be along soon.

Someone had stuck a fork, I kid you not, through the grill of Joe’s other truck and a replacement had to be found.  That is what was taking so long.

Now the cool morning had turned to a hot afternoon.  The cooling breeze was gone, the sun was beating down, and it was time to get to work.

6:30 p.m. was when we rolled out of the yard and headed for home.  Before we left the yard I took the ignition keys out of the back trucks and made sure all the doors were locked.  Of course there has to be some kind of a problem or this job would not be normal.  The passenger side door on my back truck won’t close and latch.  I slammed it, held it shut and turned the key in the lock and tried to lock it shut.  Didn’t work.  I had Joe come and help me out.  He slammed it and held the door shut while I turned the lock.  Door popped open as soon as Joe let go.

Joe being my “Fix It Guy”, had to stick his thumb in the rocker whats-it on the door.  The rocker thing that clamps around the post and latches the door.  I had visions of the rocker thing snapping on his thumb while I had my face up there trying to see what he was doing.  Had it snapped on his thumb and he jerked his hand out of the pinch spot I might very well have two black eyes, but I had to see what he was doing.  You know…Nosey Parker me.

No thumb pinching went on, and we had some success in getting the door slammed shut and the lock went a bit further closed this time.  At least enough so we could let go and it didn’t spring back open.

We got home about 7 p.m. and I got our clothes washed and ready for today. We left the house around 8:30 this morning and headed east on I-40 on our way to Spartanburg, South Carolina.

I had been checking in my left outside mirror frequently.  Watching to make sure the passenger door of the back truck would not decide to come open and flap around from some of the bumps in the road we hit.  Had I not been diligent in watching for the door to open I would not have noticed the hood of the back truck had come open and fallen on the ground.

We had gone through the last road construction bit in Oklahoma and had entered Arkansas.  A tow truck was on the right shoulder with a couple of vehicles and I maneuvered out of their way.  About another mile from that I looked in my left mirror to see something really odd going on with my back truck.  It took about 15 seconds to realize the hood had come open fully and it was dragging on the ground.  It wasn’t like that when I checked traffic on my left to go around the tow truck on the shoulder.

Faulty hood

A man with a pickup truck stopped to give me assistance while Joe pulled up behind me on the shoulder.

This man I tried to lift the hood and get it closed.  No way was it going back up.  Joe came and looked around, found the problem and told me what to do while the two of them hefted that heavy sucker back up into place.

I don’t get after Joe any longer about all the junk he brings along and we don’t use.  I’ve learned over the years that Joe, like a good Boy Scout, prepares for any and all problems.  That big yellow strap has been in one of the tool boxes for a couple years now.  Sometimes it gets in the way of the other things we need and use and I complain under my breath about it.  Today I was glad that bugger was there.

Grab Handle Damaged

Aside from a bit of the inner workings of the hood being bent and sprung the only visible damage is to the grab handle on the hood of the truck.

That piece took a grinding while it was drug on the pavement.

Had it not been for this piece of aluminum the fiberglass of the hood would have been mush and totally worthless.

I’m probably looking at a ding from Coldiron of about $1,000 to have this hood replaced or repaired.  Won’t matter that on the truck I’m driving the right latch on the hood locking device is broken.  All of these trucks are that way.  Some faulty thing with the latching mechanism.  We trusted that the hood was latched and did not take proper precautions for “Just in case” and it will now bite me in the butt.  Oh well, cost of doing business.  We put a strap on Joe’s back truck hood for “Just in case” before we got back on the road.

Damaged Light Bar

My light bar took a hit also.  There is some damage to it.

The good thing in all of this is that no one was hurt.  There was no crazy person in a car riding my butt, as they are want to do, when the hood came open.  It was daylight out so I could see there was a problem and we were able to get it at least fixed after a fashion.  My light bar only suffered some damage.  It still works so I can continue on doing my job until we get back home and get it replaced with a spare we have…which I’ve complained under my breath about because all that stuff is taking up space in the shed on our yard and the lawn mower has to be out in the elements.  Once again, My Hero has come to my aid.

We have to have these trucks delivered on Monday.  Here is hoping that tomorrow will arrive and end with no problems.  Fingers crossed.


About Message In A Fold

I am an over the road truck driver in Drive-Away Transport part of the year, and the sole bookkeeper of this operation the other part of the year. I do a lot of whining until I can get in my craft room and play with paper and glue. View all posts by Message In A Fold

6 responses to “Flipped My Lid

  • Maureen Mathis

    Wow, I’m really glad Pati and Les didn’t tag along for this one. Your “paying job” is both physically and emotionally exhasting. No wonder you light up like a Christmas tree when you can shut the world away while you are home, and especially in your craft room doing your “non-paying job.” Hey – it’s cheaper than therapy!

    • Message In A Fold

      I don’t know about my craft room fun being cheaper than therapy. Especially when I think about the crazy binges I went on in the first few years. Therapy, none the less, it surely is. Better than the old Calgon ads of the bubble bath days long ago. Joe had made the comment to Les during the time they were with us. We had five years worth of trouble in two weeks. All the stuff that happened in that two week period usually spaces itself out over a few years and not all at one time. I’ve had enough of this excitement for quite a while and long for the safety of my craft room.

  • Lynn Claridge

    It never rains but it pours for you two in your work. I was hoping the difficult stuff had gone by and you would a smoother time now but it seems it is not to be. Your garages and mechanics seem to know how to “bear on the pen” over there when it comes to bills! So glad I have my own ‘Super Hero’ when it comes to all things mechanical like you do Leslie.
    Fingers crossed for a good rst of the trip and the delivery was uneventful.

    Love and hugs
    Lynn xx

    • Message In A Fold

      This job has a litany of problems. If I were to write a book about the things that happen on the road with us it would be every bit as big as Tolstoy’s “War and Peace”. It is a never ending mess that the ill prepared can’t handle and quit after the second or third problem. Guess we are not smart enough to fall in line and just find something else less taxing to do 🙂

      You are so right about the garages here making sure their pens are full of ink. Oh for the days long ago before the computer modules in the engines and the less complicated systems. Progress has its price and we all seem to have to bear it.

      Love to you and Rod – Leslie

  • Nancy

    Oh YIKES Leslie!! I’m so glad nobody was hurt! I really enjoy all your descriptive words like “whooz-it” & “doo hickey” and such! lol Now that’s my language! 🙂
    I’m just going to keep on praying for your protection and how about a little peace too? 🙂

    • Message In A Fold

      You know the most recent adage going around? “Some days you’re the windshield. Some days you’re the bug”. Well, seems that I’m the bug and Murphy is laughing his butt off as he tags along.

      It is so cool to have someone that can speak the same language :o) Whatz-it, thing-a-ma-bob, doober whatz-it…. 😉

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: