Van Go

You took the thoughts right outta my head about weight....although, I knew you were going to take that into account.

Air bag suspension assist maybe? 🤔

Been ponderin' the air bags jus' so I could use 'em as a leveling system when parked on uneven ground.
Been ponderin' the air bags jus' so I could use 'em as a leveling system when parked on uneven ground.
I've had Firestone air bags on my Duramax for over 20 years now for assisting with cabover camper loads. They're well worth it.

Iffin you're gonna travel the backroads and byways.... find Americana.... ya gotta have fresh popcorn. :wink2:

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One of my main considerations with this interior is weight. That's why I'm using 11/32" ply. The microwave weighs 20lbs. Discretion told me to go with 3/4" for it. Might be a little heavier than needed... but at least I won't have to worry about it falling down on a large pothole.

I have Firestone bags in the back of my 4Runner. I needed the extra lift when towing trailers with very heavy tongue weights . They did a great job of levelling off the truck but fully inflated, the truck rode like it had no suspension at all. In fairness to the bags, the 4Runner is a passenger vehicle with cushy coil springs and was never meant to carry or pull large weights.
Finished up the microwave install.
First I added the face to the cubbyhole. The large section at the bottom will have an AC and DC power panel. All power, other than engine will be monitored and controlled from there.


Not sure what I was thinking, but I never installed power in the cubbyhole when I built it. Fixed that. Had to remove some of the left wall panels to run the wire... but it's in now.


Since there's precious little room to get your hands in there to fasten the oven in place, I took another piece of 3/4" ply, made a strap from aluminum and rubber and strapped the oven to it... painted it black so it's a bit unobtrusive and added two wood nuts to it. A kind of tray for the oven if you will. Slides in... two screws up from the bottom and it's easy to install/remove. Pics are kinda scarce here... not sure why I didn't take more.




And here we are....



Sue and I took Van Go out for a test the last two Sundays. Justa quick shakedown the first try. I'd forgotten that one of the problems I had driving it home after purchase was a vibration at anything over 60mph. Nothing in the steering wheel but it did feel like tire balance. So when I did the brakes, I swapped the tires front to rear. Now along with the vibes the steering wheel shook like a wet dog.... so it's definitely one of those two fronts. A closer look showed the treads were cupped. So I took him to a tire shop last week and had two new fronts installed.
Went out again last Sunday and now everything appears to be as it should. Pushed it up to about 80mph and all's well. We toodled around the back country for about 3 hrs... it's drives as good as or better'n my F150 and it's ten yrs older. Color me happy.

The eclipse is in 4 days and a wakeup. We've got a campsite reserved at Ft Leonard Wood on the edge of the Mark Twain Nat. Forrest for Sunday. It's within a stones throw of the eclipse totality path. We'll set off for it on Sunday AM and RON there. Up the next morning and we'll have a good idea of where the weather (cloud cover) is favorable and off we'll go.

Since the interior isn't anywhere close to done, this will be roughing it with sleeping bags. ;) Hopefully the next trip will be with a finished van.... or should I say, finished enough. Vans are like houses and bikes... they're never actually done.

Finally, apologies to those of you waiting on paint. This trip and van prep was kinda important to Sue and me... appreciate y'all indulging me.

It's coming along very nicely.
Cool, I'll be somewhere near Cairo or Paducah Monday afternoon.
Spending the week in Mayfield KY, "free" room and board on Samaritan's Purse. ;^)
You'll be close to the path then. If there's no rush, pull over and enjoy the spectacle. :)
Van Go is lookin' spiffy, Jim!

It came to my attention a couple days ago that the sun has recently been re-measured, and now is regarded to be a bit less than 864,936 miles in diameter (1970 measure). This means that the eclipse's south path edge has been moved 2,000 feet north and now just beyond my house !! So, there's a change in plans; I'll have to watch it in the park in Skaneateles, an opportunity to get a fish sandwich at Doug's Fish Fry in town.


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Well, we made it to Phil's ol' stompin' ground.... Ft Leonard Wood.
Pulled into the campgrounds (such as they are) just in time to hear the bugle play To the Colors. Been 30yrs since I retired from the service.... brought back some memories it did. Wind was horrendous. Quartering tail and headwinds at 25mph with gusts to 50. Had my hands full jus' staying on the road.

Had one minor glitch. About 30 miles out the engine lost power and started shaking like a wet dog. Ran the fault codes and it said "#3cyl missfire (no shit), replace plug and coil pack." Plugs are an absolute bear on this engine. Coil pack sits on the plug, so it ain't much easier, but... Pulled into a parts store parking lot and I rolled the dice on just the coil pack. 60 bucks later and he's back to purrin' like a Singer sewing machine.
Campgrounds are new (built in 2020) and in typical military fashion, spartan. Power and water hookups and that's it. Not even a porta-pottie.