Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Reunion weekend & more bus repairs

Anytime you let an antique piece of equipment sit for 7 months and then run it 200 miles you’re likely asking for trouble.  That was certainly our experience this weekend although it wasn’t particularly bad trouble, just pain in the ass kind of trouble.

We left Buchanan Thursday afternoon headed for Regina.  That night we parked on the street behind the Comfort Inn on the east side of town.  FYI that’s a great stealth parking location that a lot of truck drivers use on a regular basis.  I think its actually posted No Parking but the locations of the signs are ambiguous and nobody seems to worry about overnight parking.  We’ve stayed there a couple of times.  The Husky parking lot is a nearby alternative but its so damn noisy that we try to avoid it.  Walmart is just across Victoria Ave to the south but their parking lot is a nightmare in a car – taking the bus in there would be driving suicide.

When we got to Regina the ass end of the bus was sopping wet – again – STILL.  I was alternately pissed off and frustrated because it appeared that all my effort earlier in the week had been for naught.  I was surprised to discover that when I tried tightening the clamps on the vertical hoses they appeared to be relatively loose.  I’m not sure what was going on there – it was almost like the clamps had stretched out a bit.  Whatever the reason – perhaps it was as simple as that I hadn’t tightened them enough initially – I was able to tighten all the clamps some and the ones on the vertical hoses I tightened significantly.  I also had the feeling that there was some diesel in the mix but there was so much coolant splashing around that it was impossible to be sure there was also diesel present and flat out of the question to figure out where the potentially present diesel might be coming from.

By the time we got to Lac Pelletier Regional Park for my Class of ‘79 reunion however there was no doubt that I was losing diesel fuel somewhere.  By that point the coolant leaks were clearly completely under control but the engine was still wet.  We could smell the diesel fuel every time we stopped and the micro-truck had an oily rustproof coating.  Great – another problem.

A diesel fuel leak should be easy to isolate and this was no big deal.  It was obviously a pressure leak on the “front” of the engine and likely somewhere near the top of the engine.  There were really only two potential hoses it could be coming from.  It could also have been a fitting on either end of either of those two hoses but that was easy to rule out.  I just washed both hoses down with BrakeKleen and then started the engine.  When I revved the engine it was immediately obvious where the fuel leak was.  Fixing it was another matter entirely.  And it still isn’t fixed.

It is however patched and the patch held from Lac Pelletier all the way to Saskatoon.  The engine was still dry when we arrived in Saskatoon and we’re on a tight enough schedule this week that I’m just going to cross my fingers and leave it alone until we get to Regina tomorrow night.  Once we’re there I’ll tear it apart and figure out how to get the hard to get at ends out of their fittings.  I don’t want to touch it here in case it turns into a multi-day ordeal.


That flash of bright yellow in the top centre is Rescue Tape wrapped around the fuel line and secured with small hose clamps.  Its definitely not a “fix” but it appears to be an adequate patch.  I have located a supplier for teflon hose with stainless steel exterior braid and I have figured out what kind of fittings I need for the ends of the hoses.  The big challenge is going to be getting the old hoses out of the fittings on the block.  In the picture above you can see that the hose disappears into the front of the engine but what you can’t see is that it executes a sharp bend down and finishes up directly behind the little short length of 1-1/4” hose that I just finished replacing.  I think if I cut out that short hose again that will give me enough room to remove the fuel line.  I will take one shot at getting the fuel line out without removing the coolant hose but I’m thinking that’s a forlorn hope so I’ll likely be (again) dealing with coolant as well as fuel hoses.

1 comment:

Mister Ed The poster boy but the real brains behind the scenes Miss Sheri said...

the fuel lines are air aeroquip
the hose u can replace
the fittings u can reuse
all u need is a mandrell tool look on line as to how they work (main nut out screw cw main nut in ccw)
if u cheat lock the fitting down and lube the hose and the fitting with care screw fitting in hose ccw slow till it bottoms out
look for spring type clamps 7/16 scocket all u need
O and Hi joy your day