Wednesday, November 25, 2009

GMC Motorhome House Batteries

This post is for my GMC friends. House battery replacement in our GMC is not an easy task. We had to get these from here, up and into here. This is no easy task. The inner fenders have to come out. Not that bad getting them out but is a real bear getting them back in a lined up. This is the new Ragusa 3 battery tray I got from Jim K. It holds two house batteries and the engine battery. We did not have to remove the engine battery to get the house batteries in. That was a good thing.
Well, we are half done. Finished the passenger side. I push up from the bottom while TerI pulls from the top side, with a rope.

Now, over to the driver's side. We got to do it all again.

These two must be heaved up and into their resting place.

And, here they sit. Whew, that was a chore. We got out early this morning and got these girls up and in. They ride there with nothing holding them in. Kinda scary but have never had a problem. Not enough room for them to bounce out. Hooked them all up and presto, got our coach ready for a week of dry camping in the rain. As long as the sun shines every other day, or so, we have electricity to run everything in our coach. I like being self sufficient. In Az. the sun rarely misses a day so we are good to go.

The worst part of the entire deal was getting those inner fenders back in there. I am going to figure out some way to make that much easier. I know there is a way.
Well, that was our biggest accomplishment for today. The last thing on my 10 item list of "to do s" before we head west.
Teri and I hope that everyone has a great Thanksgiving, with family and friends. We are extremely thankful for the friends that we have, many of them have come into our lives because of this old GMC motorhome.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Over The Years

We got the 4 new batteries for the GMC yesterday. It rained today so they are still in the car. Hoping for nice weather Wednesday to get them uploaded into their resting places. That will have the coach ready to travel. 2 of the old 6 volts are coming inside to either run our tv or my ham radio equipment. May hook them up to solar as I have a spare panel in the basement.
No, I have not heard from the painter on the Vdub. I plan to call him tomorrow. I'd like to pick it up before snow hits that area.
Lately I have noticed how time has been good to ladies. When I was 20 years old the 40 year old grandmothers looked kinda old to me. I guess the stuff in the bottle has really improved their looks. I noticed when I was 40 years old that the 45 year old ladies looked a lot different than they did back in the mid 70's. Had to be the stuff in the bottle they were using. At 55 I can see the stuff in the bottle has really improved. The 40 year old girls look like kids. I can't believe it. Now, the 60 year old ladies are quite beautiful. What has been going on? When I was 40 there certainly was no 52 year old lady I would be attracted to. Now, I look at Teri, wow, she is quite foxy. Must be the stuff these ladies are buying in the bottle. You know, what they use on their skin. I can't wait another 15 years to see just how this stuff in a bottle improves. Hey, I might try some of it then. So many beautiful ladies out there. You guys should really appreciate them. Make sure you give your gal extra money for the stuff in the bottle.
Hoping everyone is enjoying life as much as I am. If not, buy a GMC motorhome and get your wife a bottle of the stuff I am talking about.
See ya later,

Saturday, November 21, 2009

GMC Motorhome Batteries

Oh, I had to share this one with you. 3 year old Rylan. I took this shot after grandpa wore him out riding around town in the motorhome. We play hard. Some of the GMC coaches came with a seperate starting battery for the generator, such is the case with our's. I always thought a small lawnmower battery should do the trick and save us a lot of room. Today I tried it out.
It worked so out came the large battery and in went the lawnmower battery. Cold cranking amps is stated as 330. I cranked the Onan several times. It never grunted.

Saved us some valuable space. I will now have room to put other stuff in this hole.

Here is a shot of three of the batteries removed from the coach. Will remove the fourth Monday and head to Sam's Club, in Cape, for 4 new 6 volts. Above.
Below, inside the coach's electrical room I added a combiner. When the large battery was in the Onan compartment I did not worry about drawing some current from it. It was tied to the house batteries so it would charge. Our Onan charger is unhooked and uses the on board converter for that. Well, this combiner will allow the lawnmower battery to be connected any time there is a charge coming in. Does not matter if it is from the on board converter or the solar. When no charge is coming in, the combiner relay flips and they are no longer connected. We have one of these between our house batteries and the engine battery also. I like this setup.

It was such a beautiful day here today. I had to finish up what I could on the GMC. Basically, we are ready to roll. We will clean the inside and stick the batteries in and be ready. I like having everything ready in advance. I seem to get frustrated more when I am under the gun. This Fall I have had plenty of time and having my list has really helped. I like to think that the coach is in as good a shape as it has ever been. Now, it should all be just preventative stuff while out for the winter.
Only one more day and we can get back out on the roads. For you working folks, enjoy. We will take over again come Monday.

Friday, November 20, 2009


Its Friday, one of my least favorite days. Tomorrow is Saturday and all of the working folks will be back on the roads. I do my best to hang around home on the weekends. Let the working people have the roads. Won't be long until its Monday again and Teri and I can go about our fun times running around.
A couple of weeks ago I started a list of 10 things I wanted/needed done on the GMC before we take off toward Quartzsite. Today we checked off number 9 and part of 10. We dropped the house batteries out of the coach. That is no easy chore and it takes both of us. I take the fender liners out first. Then unhook the batteries and tie somthing on them from the top side. Teri holds the rope and I fish the 50 pound critters out and down through the wheel openings. It is a chore. Next week we will run to Cape and get 4 new 6 volt deep cycle batteries. We will shove them back and up into their resting places. 2 on the driver's side and 2 on the passenger's side, up in front of the front wheels, under the hoods. That should have us ready for the 1800 mile, one way, trip. Then a few weeks out in the desert with only the sun to keep them charged.
We were lucky enough last night to keep our 3 year old grandson, Rylan. He is such a fun kid to have around. We, he and I, took the coach out today for gasoline and lp gas. He was 10 feet tall sitting in his preotective child's seat in the passenger seat. He loved looking out the windows, searching for Mustang cars. He and his older brother love Mustangs. Every little bit he would hollar, "make it go fast grandpa". We had a ball.
Well, if you are working, enjoy the weekend. If you are retired, hang on, Monday is coming.

Monday, November 16, 2009

One of My Most Favorite Days of the Week

I spent most of Sunday afternoon hunkered down in here. Need to do a little shining up before I put the cover back on. I installed new transmission cooling lines yesterday. This is what took so long. I could not get these threads to line up. Was a real "bear". A 30 minute job took me about 2 and a half hours. Oh well, I am retired.
That was my last item on the check list for the coach. Should be ready to roll toward Quartzsite now. Oh, forgot, I added another item to that list. We need 4 new house batteries. That is a chore. I have them all up front and will have to remove the fender wells to get the old ones out and new ones in. Guess that will happen on next sunny day.
Today the sun is gone and it sprinkled rain over night. Glad I am retired. I can just sit inside and wait for a sunny day. Or, maybe I will hit the road and see what is going on around town. Being Monday all of the working folks are off the roads. I like that.
The picture from last week was a 69 Ultravan. Most of those were built in the 60's and had a Corvair engine shoved under the bead, in the rear. There are several of them still out there rolling. Some even have Corvette and Toronado v-8 s in the back. Sure would enjoy revving one of those bad boys up and popping the clutch. I got several emails on that. I even gave a real clue. I left the photo name on it so if you put your cursor on the picture it says 69 Ultravan.
Hope everyone has a great week. Will be back soon.

Saturday, November 14, 2009


I forgot to upload this last night. Who can tell me what it is? Been outside cleaning some old grease and grime from the transmission case and under the GMC. I have a new set of transmission lines to install and I do not like working in greasy stuff. Normally a little Simple Green and water will take care of it. That is all I ever use on my engine compartment. Pretty easy to keep a vehicle's engine and bay clean once you get it all of, down to the paint. Just a shot of Simple Green a couple of times a year and then rinse it off with water. A clean engine is a happy engine in my book.
Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Friday the 13th

Oh wow, I just realized today is Friday the 13th. I thought I had better warn all of our friends. I hope you made it through the day with no problems. If you did not realize it then I am sure all is well with you. If you had a bad day, blame it on the 13th falling on a Friday.
We finished the cotton harvest yesterday. I got invited back for next year. I find it a great way to pay our taxes and insurance on the house, which are both due. Teri worked a day with us this year. Seems she got paid about 3 times what I did. She has been sick all week so that helped her to start feeling better. It worked better than flowers arriving in front of friends.
I got the oil changed on the motorhome this afternoon. Had no excuse, sun was out and the temperature was 65 degrees. Also did a little cleaning under the engine hatch. I hate a dirty engine or surrounding area. Seems that was the last of a long list. So, I just added another item or two. I have a new set of transmission lines. Maybe I will see if I can change them out tomorrow. Will have a 4 year old grandson here to help me.
I guess that is about it from here. No call on the vdub this week. Has been 4 weeks now. I will wait another week and then call if I don't hear anything. We want to get it home before it snows up there. I think the GMC is ready to roll now. Am having visions of Quartzsite. Can't wait to get out there.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Still Here

Wow, it has been a week since I was over here. I will tell you that we have been picking cotton. Today is my first day off in over a week. We are down to 50 acres and it is not quite ready yet. I think Thursday we will finish up. I will be back to my busy schedule then and will get more updates going. I have a very busy schedule when not working. Very organized also. I get up around 10 am, check my emails and the GMC net. Grab a shower and a cup of coffee. By noon I am ready to go. Have the afternoon to get stuff done around here, mostly tinkering on the motorhome. It gets dark early since we have gone back to normal CST. About 5pm I come on in and catch the local news, on tv and make sure the market did not crash. Then down to serious buisness. Get busy online. That's when I have just a few minutes to upate the blog. If I miss my "window" of time then I have to wait fror another day. My schedule is so full.

It has been three weeks since we left the vdub at the painter's in north Indiana. I did get some pictures Friday from a friend that stopped by to check on it. Will upload those in a minute.

On to more important information now.

13 years ago today our oldest grandchild came into this world. She is a beautiful little lady, inside and out. Kelsey Barlow. She lives in Duncan, Az. I can't wait to get back out there to see her as a teenager. Happy Birthday Kelsey.
Ok, got the pics of the bug up there. Now you know what we know. I am hoping a week or so it will be done. At least before bad weather hits. It is way up in Topeka, In. It gets cold up there as Santa lives around there some place.
Well, that is about it from the Gregg home today. We have a gospel meeting going on this week with Tyler Young from Texas. He is a good speaker and is educating us on what we should pay attention to when our kids and grandkids are watching movies and using the texting features of the cell phones. Also, the music that they listen to is to be monitored. Very informing. I am glad we have him here this week.
That's it.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Rain Has Stopped

Wow, we have been wet here for a long time. Seems that we get two days each week to work in the cotton and the rest of the time it rains. The sun is out today. the word I have gotten is that Tuesday we may be able to mud the pickers through the field. I hope so. Do not want to be working when it is zero degrees out there.
Here are some pictures of the cotton module building that I do. When I was a kid we dragged a sack and hand picked the cotton. It was weighed and dumped into a trailer. The trailer was pulled to the gin and emptied. Totally different today. Looking into the builder from my office window.
This arm is operated by hydraulics. It tamps the cotton down.

Cotton being dumped into the module builder. We get about 3 big dumps in one of the builders.

Yep, that is my office.

A shot of the buggy dumping more cotton into the builder. We build big bales. A truck comes and pulls these big bales into it and off to the gin. This is a lot easier than it used to be. I enjoy running the module builder. I put pictures up last year when we were working but thought I might put these up for new readers.

We can pick 100 acres per day barring no breakdowns or bad weather. So far, we have finished about 500 acres. We have another 500 to go. 5 good days might do it but I figure more like 8 or 9 days, depending on weather. I hope we can get done soon. The Vdub is going to be finished soon and we must drive back to Topeka, In. to pull ithome. Would like to make that trip before it starts snowing. We will be right on the Michigan line and it can get mighty cold up there.
Hope everyone is having a good week. The sun sure feels good coming through our south facing picture window. We are glad to see it after so many cloudy and rainy days. I saw the forecast. Should be good weather here all week.
Catch you next time.