At some point early last summer, the sliding door began uttering a horribly loud screeching sound when closing the door. Despite new grease and varying speeds of closure, the stubborn, campsite awakening sound remained. As a result, we began leaving the door open as much as possible, but obviously, though the mosquitoes thought it ideal, this was not a great solution and the problem landed on my winter hibernation to-do list.
Upon her purchase, Moby’s sliding door striker plate was too high and the latch hit the bottom of the hole in the striker every time we closed the door. Adjusting the striker plate as low as possible solved the issue but this left the plate with no additional downward adjustment. When I then examined the bottom door rollers and sliding door track, I discovered what appeared to be a groove worn into the track bottom which might account for some, but not all, of the drop required at the striker plate. Subsequently, during this winter’s preliminary examination, I noticed that the sliding Continue reading
Not that it really matters what the day was like. It’s just good to be getting the hands a little greasy along with the arrival of spring weather. Moby is almost back on the road! Just a few more items to tackle, most notably a problem with the back, right-side wheel hub. Are they supposed to smoke? 😀
Draining the oil
Rain, snow, freezing temperatures, blistering sun, dark of night, or even pleasant weather, owners of old VWs experience it all while trying to troubleshoot the unexpected malfunction. A lot of these incidents make for great stories and are often told time and again around the VW show circuit or campout fire. “Remember the time when…. used bubblegum to…. repair lasted for…. miles.” “Had to drive…. hours…. head out the window…. eyebrows frozen…. then had to go all the way back home.” We all have heard them, laughed at them, stood amazed at the luck or lack thereof, or shook our heads in bewilderment. Maybe we even filed some tidbit of information away for potential future use to save our own bacon. “Well if that ever happened to me….” The odd tale, here and there, becomes legend, taking on a personality of its own as it spreads not just by the person front and center in the story, but by people who heard the story from a friend, who heard it from their friend and so forth. For me, these anecdotes are as enjoyable within the VW community as are the barn find narratives or the technical discussions. They demonstrate the ingenuity, humor, patience, and persistence that we all must possess to deal with such old machines. If nothing else, these accounts tell me that I am not alone and that, yes, others “suffer” too – there is comfort in company.
As it turns out, our latest such misadventure occurred last October, during our biannual Civil War-related campout. Continue reading
I cannot believe seven years have passed me by since the last Bug-Out VW show I managed to attend. Held every Memorial Day and Labor Day weekend (on Sunday), the show was a staple for me early in this hobby. With such an absence, and the show’s move to a new location, I made sure the schedule was clear this year.
The show moved from its original location at the Old Dominion Speedway back in 2011, when the speedway sold its land and relocated. Over the past seven years, Bug-Outs continued to draw VWs from around the region to Virginia Motorsports Park in Dinwiddie, VA. Last year, the former owners of Old Dominion opened their new track, Dominion Raceway, in Thornburg, VA with the Bug-Out making its grand debut last Continue reading
And it is, both literally and figuratively. Martha gave me this sign today and it is a great reminder of many fun times in a VW bus getting lost, having adventures, and both learning and growing. Many good days ahead to look forward to as well.
Every time our bus goes in for her annual safety inspection, I wonder what quirk of this 40+ year-old vehicle might trigger the dreaded pink sticker of failure. Let’s face it, after so many years parts and pieces do not always work as they should and while we owners often find ways to live with these imperfections, safety code says the part or piece must work as intended. So far, knock on wood, Moby passes her inspection each year, but I give some credit to the inspectors at our garage and their acknowledgment of Moby’s age.
As a prime example, the turn signal switch is a bit finicky and has been that way since we got the bus. Now when I say finicky, I do not mean the signals sometimes work and sometimes not. The switch is very reliable in working the lights which is what probably saved us each inspection to date. The problem is the switch housing and the fact it no longer mounts to the steering column properly. Because of this, the housing Continue reading
A few weeks ago, before spring blossomed across Virginia, we took advantage of some free time during the weekend and hit the road in Moby. Not a major trip, just really an excuse to get in the bus and go, we headed out for a family lunch in Culpeper, Virginia. The day was a bit on the cloudy side, but it was good to be bussin’ again after the winter break. We also took advantage of the drive to have some fun with a GoPro camera Martha gave me for Christmas. Now, after a few weeks of learning (and some procrastination), I present my first video project and, hopefully, begin a new presentation format for this blog.