Shakedown trip & blasted Murphy

We had planned to start our maiden trip just days after our launch BBQ party. However old Murphy was a very unwelcome visitor, in fact he stayed around and created mischief several times in the following week. I went through a stage where I fervently wished we had never started this bus conversion. I wasn't able to voice thought as I didn't want to bring Rob down as he had to bear the brunt of the responsibility of sorting out all the hassles and I am sure there were times that he felt the same! I think Murphy had decided to move it with us for a while.

A big part of our problem was getting this engine reconditioned
It basically started  a couple of months earlier with getting the engine reconditioned and adding a turbo onto the job. We were first given a 3 week window for the job. The mechanics had so many problems themselves with the job. First it was much harder to remove the engine than expected. Parts needed were not the ones listed in the Mitsubishi manual - they had changed the parts and hadn't bothered to note the changes in the manuals and to make matters worst, the bus is a grey import so many parts are not necessarily kept in Australia. 6-8 weeks later the specialist engineer doing the job collapses at work and had to be rushed to hospital so a replacement engineer is needed. Finally the mechanic gets the engine back and there are more hassles in getting back into the engine area as room needs to be made for the turbo addition which makes it too tight to fit in the same space.

I can't believe I was so caught up that I forgot to take any photos of the BBQ
We were so confident that the bus would be back weeks earlier that we 'booked' a date for a BBQ launch party. Even the day before the party, it seemed as though we were not going to have the bus back in time. We decided we would have to blow up a photo and post that where the bus should have been. Thankfully we get a phone call that we could pick up the bus just hours before the party. There was no time at all to clean it up let alone pretty it up for showing, so a sweep and a borrowed doona off the spare bed in the house had to suffice for 'interior decorating'. We were just happy to have the bus there at all. The party went on to be a huge success.

We weren't going to be able to leave within days of the party as originally planned as Old Murphy stuck his head out again. We had a few things such as fixing. When Rob picked up the bus on the day of the party, he drove it home and then he found he was locked inside the bus, The door handle had broken in such a way that the mechanism inside the latch was broken. In the end we had to completely replace the handle. I haven't had time to remove the hand written note to push (as you turn) yet!. (Yet another little job for on the road.)

We had to replace the door handle completely
Another problem was that we couldn't figure out why the hot water wasn't firing up. It was just one hassle after another, so now the maiden trip was rescheduled for the Friday.

Whilst Rob is fixing all these little problems, I am tearing my hair out trying to pack the motorhome. I have a list that I have modified with each previous trip (in the caravan). It itemizes every little thing from toothpicks to the cooker. I am so glad for it esp with starting the motorhome from scratch. I was NOT convinced that EVERYTHING was going to fit in the bus, but I realize now in hindsight that I have room left over, but I am being miserly with using up that 'spare' space.

I am also trying to work out where the most practical place for the stuff to go, which is quite a challenge. I have moved the mugs 3 times already!

For our destination, Newcastle was chosen as it is far enough away to give it a decent first run and close enough to run home to fix any problems and to pack anything I have forgotten before we started our major trip to Tasmania.
Visiting Newcastle was also a great opportunity to catch up with family and friends as well. The awning arrived during our delayed week but it will have to wait until we come back from the shakedown trip as will a few not so important jobs - some of which Rob can do once we are really and truly on the road. There are just too many important things that need to be done first. We did get the name signs up though since Signarama Miranda sent a young man to adhere the stickers on for us and they look great!

So Friday comes along, I am starting to calm down a bit and can even get some regular housework done whilst waiting for Rob. Murphy has yet more tricks up his sleeve for us: The wiring for the towed car was about 6 inches too short - the people fitting the A frame didn't allow for turning. Next the indicator lights etc wouldn't work o the towed vehicle. We couldn't work that one out so the motorhome has to go off to the auto electrician to get him to sort it out. Apparently when the mechanic took the engine out, he cut the wires and must have forgotten to rejoin them in his haste to meet our deadline. At least it was a simple job - the wonderful auto electrician  at Figtree Auto Electrics didn't even charge us to fix it for us! So rather than stress we decided to stay home one more night. At last everything is ready to go. We decided it was better to leave first thing in the morning.

It is ridiculous just how many little hassles, old Murphy shoved our way. They were annoying rather than insurmountable. We needed a holiday just to de-stress from preparing for our holiday. I am so thankful it is not always so difficult - all just part of the teething problems!

Murphy had one more trick up his sleeve... find out what in the next post! (This post is long enough!)

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations on keeping your calm and finally getting on the road.


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