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Old 09-03-2011, 10:00 AM   #76
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Aha! That explains why I keep hearing women complain about guys being led around by their...
Ba Da Bum {rimshot}

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Old 09-03-2011, 10:40 AM   #77
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Originally Posted by FreezinRafiki View Post
NOTHING CAN STOP THE ROCKET VAN! HAHAHAHAHA!
Really? I thought maybe one of Doofenschmirtz's "-inators" finally worked based on your foreboding teaser about the next update.

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I may have to print that one out and frame it!
That might be a good idea. I doubt you'll ever see that statement again.
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Old 09-03-2011, 04:58 PM   #78
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I like your doggies.. My small dog thinks he's a cat as well.. Know how cats go in and out through your legs when you're trying to walk.. Yeah my gizmo does that.
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Old 09-04-2011, 09:28 AM   #79
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I'm in! Love your trip reports! My favorite part is how as I'm thinking something like, "I hope he explains why there's a plant in the far back." the rest of my mind keeps reading ahead and finds the answer is there! Thanks for sharing your stories!
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Old 09-04-2011, 11:10 AM   #80
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Barry and Bambi - Trying to get caught up with posts today and just had to comment on your scary experience with Madison and her bike. So glad that everyone was safe after that adventure. How scary it must have been for you all. And what a brave young man Evan was taking care of his mom and pulling her back from the edge. How sweet. And that Madison was able to get back on her bike and conquer it, good job.

Again, glad no one was injured seriously.

Now, back to page 4 to catch up!
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Old 09-04-2011, 02:48 PM   #81
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I just read about the bike incident. Yikes! How scary for all parties involved! I'm so glad that everyone is okay and that she was able to get back on. What a resilient, spunky kid!
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Old 09-04-2011, 09:51 PM   #82
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Yippee...another TR! We were there at the same time - and for 2 weeks as well. Instead of dogs, my girls brought friends

Can't wait to hear more!
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Old 09-05-2011, 07:15 AM   #83
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Aha! That explains why I keep hearing women complain about guys being led around by their...

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Ba Da Bum {rimshot}

^^Yeah, what she said ^^
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Old 09-05-2011, 07:23 AM   #84
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Originally Posted by afwdwfan View Post
Really? I thought maybe one of Doofenschmirtz's "-inators" finally worked based on your foreboding teaser about the next update.
Why do you think we brought Perry along?

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Originally Posted by afwdwfan View Post
That might be a good idea. I doubt you'll ever see that statement again.
Challenge Accepted!

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I like your doggies.. My small dog thinks he's a cat as well.. Know how cats go in and out through your legs when you're trying to walk.. Yeah my gizmo does that.
Oh man! That would get pretty dangerous with my 50 pound Pepper!

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Originally Posted by PartyFromSaturn View Post
I'm in! Love your trip reports! My favorite part is how as I'm thinking something like, "I hope he explains why there's a plant in the far back." the rest of my mind keeps reading ahead and finds the answer is there! Thanks for sharing your stories!
Welcome!
I was working on this whole "I'm clairvoyant and knew exactly what you'd be thinking while reading along" response, but I started sounding kind of creepy so I think I'll just scrap it and go with "Thank You!"
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Old 09-05-2011, 07:29 AM   #85
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Originally Posted by dvc4life View Post
Barry and Bambi - Trying to get caught up with posts today and just had to comment on your scary experience with Madison and her bike. So glad that everyone was safe after that adventure. How scary it must have been for you all. And what a brave young man Evan was taking care of his mom and pulling her back from the edge. How sweet. And that Madison was able to get back on her bike and conquer it, good job.

Again, glad no one was injured seriously.

Now, back to page 4 to catch up!
Thanks. Evan truly is the unsung hero of the story.

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I just read about the bike incident. Yikes! How scary for all parties involved! I'm so glad that everyone is okay and that she was able to get back on. What a resilient, spunky kid!
I'll make sure to tell you that you called her spunky. She'll get a kick out of that!

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Yippee...another TR! We were there at the same time - and for 2 weeks as well. Instead of dogs, my girls brought friends

Can't wait to hear more!
Dogs or extra kids...hmmmm...I think I'd rather have the dogs.
Welcome!
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Old 09-05-2011, 04:44 PM   #86
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...............
I drag raced a State Trooper in Georgia.
And WON!.......
Well Mr. B...maybe it is best if you avoid Texas on the next driving trip.
There would've likely been a MUCH different outcome with our Texas DPS folk.

Plus, our "other Smokey" (wildfires) average at least 60 miles an hour!

Sure glad y'all came out OK after your "Stunt Dude-n-Dudette training".
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Old 09-05-2011, 08:50 PM   #87
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I'm joining in and definitely looking forward to this one! Your dogs are real cute! And the only thing I have to say about that lone cheese doodle is this:

I just read that story about you and Madison falling down that cliff. I'm so glad no one was seriously hurt. That must have been quite a scare indeed.
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Old 09-06-2011, 08:03 AM   #88
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Well Mr. B...maybe it is best if you avoid Texas on the next driving trip.
There would've likely been a MUCH different outcome with our Texas DPS folk.
One of the guys here on the DIS is a former Georgia State Patrol officer, so I like to bust his chops every once in a while. (Ok, every chance I get).
I know better than to go more than a few MPH over the limit in Georgia - they love their speed traps down there, and it makes for a looooong drive though the state!
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Plus, our "other Smokey" (wildfires) average at least 60 miles an hour!
I saw pictures of some of those - holy moley!
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Sure glad y'all came out OK after your "Stunt Dude-n-Dudette training".
Thanks. I'm glad that she didn't pop up say "That was awesome! Let's do it again!" I have a strong feeling that Evan may have done that.

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I'm joining in and definitely looking forward to this one! Your dogs are real cute! And the only thing I have to say about that lone cheese doodle is this:
Welcome!
I'm starting to think that doodle was some kind of spy, sent to infiltrate the cheese ball empire.
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I just read that story about you and Madison falling down that cliff. I'm so glad no one was seriously hurt. That must have been quite a scare indeed.
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Old 09-06-2011, 08:32 AM   #89
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OK, it's a grocery list written on the back of McDonalds receipt. Whatever.


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KAAAAAAHHHHHNNNNN!
Star Trek 2

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Is this the cow that delivered the mail to Delaware??


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Did you see that scar? I think I'm still bleeding...
Now Barry will be walking up to random people and asking, "Wanna know how I got these scars?"
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Old 09-06-2011, 09:24 AM   #90
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Keeping Our [Van] Cool

It was early afternoon on arrival day. We stepped out into the hot, muggy Florida air, took a deep breath, and ... headed for my in-law's air conditioned house.

We unloaded most of our stuff, grabbed Grandpa (Grandma was still at work) and headed over the a local (air conditioned) Bob Evan's for lunch. The food was fine. I don't think I could tell the difference between food from Bob Evan's vs. Denny's vs. Perkins. It's all edible, and since we were hungry from the long drive, it tasted better than it should have. As we sat there and ate, we watched an afternoon rainstorm make it's way through the area. Which was good, because the conditions just weren't sauna-like enough.

Well, after getting back from lunch, I had a daunting task in front of me - but first - a little background. About a year or so ago, I noticed my van was leaking coolant. From behind the right rear tire, of all places. The coolant lines (along with A/C lines) run back there to supply heating and cooling to the rear passenger compartment. Well, the steel lines run up and over the right rear tire and are held in place by some steel brackets. Guess what, folks? Steel rusts. I had replaced a chunk of rusting steel with some rubber heater hose. Because of the condition of these lines, I always like to keep a jug of coolant tucked away in the van for long trips.

It was somewhere in Southern Georgia, early Saturday morning. We stopped for gas, and like I always do, I checked the coolant. The reservoir was empty. I checked by the tire, and sure enough, there were a few drops of coolant back there on the pavement. I filled up the coolant, we grabbed some breakfast items from our cooler and we hit the road.

Just about every gas stop after that, I was adding a quart or two of coolant. At the rate it was dripping, we'd be able to make it to Lakeland. But with the rust on those lines, the tiny holes could grow to catastrophic size at any time. We did make it, but with almost a dozen 45 mile trips to Disney World and 1,200 miles back home looming on the horizon - I had to get this fixed. So I settled in with Grandpa's tools in the carport to get to work.



There won't be many pictures in this update, but that one is with the tire off, looking at where the coolant lines disappear back into the van. This was the "before" picture that I sent to my mechanically inclined brother back in Wisconsin. The response I got: "Good Luck, Buddy!"

Upon initial examination, it looked like I would only need to replace about 6 inches of steel line with rubber hose. I ran to Autozone, got 12 inches (just in case) and assorted hose clamps. Wrong size hose.

So I ran to NAPA, got there 2 minutes before they closed, and got 12 inches of the right size hose. I got that on, but in doing so, another area that was rusting started to give way. Then another, then another, then another.

And it was hot. And it was sticky. And I was supposed to be on vacation. The hardest part was working in such tight quarters with the A/C lines right next to the coolant lines. I knew if I so much as nicked one of those we'd lose the air conditioning and that I know I can't fix. Nor would I be able to fix the lump on the side of my head where Bambi would wallop me with a frying pan for destroying the Air Conditioning in Florida in July.

The hours ticked by and I was making slow progress - but progress none the less. At one point, Bambi came over. She had her "I'm going to be serious here" look on. She gently asked if it would be better for us just to go look for a new vehicle. I was was astounded that she would suggest that! I was appalled in her lack of faith in my mechanical abilities. I was .... giving it serious consideration.

The thing I had going for me was that parts for this job were cheep - I had less than $30 in parts (but considerably more in sweat equity). I had one more last ditch effort - replace all 6 feet or so of steel hose. If that didn't work - well, I didn't even want to think about car shopping while on vacation. I spent 6 weeks researching which camera to buy - how do you think I'd handle buying a car on the spur of the moment?

By this time, it's getting late. All of the auto supply shops had closed except for Pep Boys. I went there, bought their last 10 feet of heater hose and a few miscellaneous odds and ends. Another hour or so of cussing under the van and it was time for the ultimate test. I poured in the coolant, started the engine and expected to see a shower of green coolant blowing out from somewhere. But I didn't. The was a drip here and there, but they vanished with a quick tightening of a hose clamp.

After roughly 5 hours, less than $100 in parts, countless skinned up knuckles - but most importantly - not having to buy a new car - our van was fixed* and we could get on with vacation.

Up Next: The Van's first road test - 120 miles round trip to the Gulf.


*Was it really fixed? I know the guy that fixed it - he really doesn't know what he's doing - so I spent the next 2 weeks being paranoid.
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