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It's Finally Spring!

GrampaDennis

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It's finally Spring in Central Maine! The leaves are opening up and camping season has begun.

When I retrieved the MH from storage in late April, the engine battery had run down, even though I had used the disconnect switch. I used the battery interconnect on the dash to boost from the house batteries. It started right up. That's a handy feature!

I got all of the systems going without much trouble. I did have to play with the burner adjustment on the water heater though. On our last outing in the fall, it got a little sooty. I adjusted it a bit then, but apparently didn't get it right. This spring, it was blowing itself out. After a couple of trials, I now have it working well.

I went through my funnel collection and found one that sort of worked for catching the anti-freeze out of the water heater. As I mentioned in an earlier blog, this rig doesn't have the WH bypass setup, so I had filled the entire 6 gallon WH with RV anti-freeze. Some spilled oun the ground, but I captured about 3.5 gallons for re-use next fall.

The in-dash AC system in this 1998 Southwind has not held freon since we bought it last year. I had tried the refill kits, and gotten the AC to work, but it promptly leaked down again. Since we are planning a summertime trip to Washington, DC, we decided to get it fixed. I took the MH to a local radiator and AC shop, thinking I just had a leak somewhere that would not be too expensive. It turned out that the leak was in the most expensive part - the compressor. The AC guy recommended a new compressor, as opposed to a rebuilt, which might have been $100 cheaper. He also urged that we replace the drier, which he said should be replaced anytime your are into an automotive AC system this old. The compressor arrived the next day, but the drier came a couple of days later than expected. The shop had the MH from Monday to Friday, and the bill was just under $900. Grandma and I better enjoy the cold air!

Originally, we had planned for our first outing of the season to be with the Maine Wheels in Dixfield, Maine on 5/16 through 5/18. However, a memorial service was scheduled on 5/17 for a relative who died in Florida a few weeks ago. So, we adjusted our plans and camped at my sister's place in Parkman, Maine. The MH ran well and we enjoyed the AC all the way there. I saw several cousins and friends that I have not seen for a while. On Saturday night we had real pork and beans - not the kind you buy in a can. My sister and bother-in-law had raised the pig and grown the beans. They were cooked all day in a slow cooker. There was plenty of lean meat in this pork and beans dish. It was accompanied by some excellent home-made biscuits. Yummy!

Things worked out pretty well for a rainy weekend!

We have made reservations for Memorial Weekend at Beaver Brook campground. This place is quite nearby, so I will drive the MH and Grandma will follow with the pickup, hauling our two kayaks in the back. We have camped at this place before - about 30 years ago! It's grown quite a bit since. We have invited our 10 year old grandson to come with us, but he has another offer - to visit with friends his age. We think we know which one he will choose.



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