Yesterday morning I got busy first thing jacking and blocking up the whole trailer with anything I could find.Sal(the owner)came around soon after starting and helped me find blocks and a larger jack.Even a couple of old rims worked out good.
I showed Sal the photo’s I copied off the net of the OEM lift kit that Trail-Lite has available,which is a ready made, no welding required,out of the box,bolt on installation.So I figured duplicating this should be quite easy.I could see Sal was taking quite an interest,being a mechanic when he lived in Illinois.I felt this was a good sign because when the time came to explain to the metal fabricator,he should have a full understanding of what is required.
You can see in the LH photo,if those swing arms had been manufactured with the arm slightly down rather than slightly up,I wouldn't have to be doing this now.There were 3 positional choices when ordering,I chose the wrong one,as well so did the Spring and Axle guy in McAllen.
On the RH,Sal and I dropped the axle’s to the ground ready for the fabricator to come and be shown what was required.He was busy but Sal brought him around about mid afternoon after he finished his last project.The two of them went into a long descriptive discussion on what was required for at least 45 minutes.Finally all was satisfactory and he said that he would return with the preliminary pieces at 10am today,this way he can check for fit as he constructs the 2 main parts for each side.This is great and his shop is in sight of this park.
Sal told me that this guy built him a metal spiral staircase,so this should be a snap.Also he told me of a fiberglass worker he knows, that is not expensive and does good work,so this might be a good time to get the wheel well repaired.
Above is a photo taken on Sunday soon after arriving,and that camper and jeep in the background belongs to Mike and Terri Church, the authors of several RV Travel books,and regular visitors to the big Snowbird RV Show in Abbotsford BC each fall.I sat in on one of their talks just before leaving to go south.I wanted to get their new 4th edition of “Travelers Guide To Mexican Camping.”I don't think there is hardly any RV’er who travels Mexico,that doesn’t have one of their books.Everyone calls it the Mexican RV travel bible.I know that it guided me to many of the places that I travelled this winter and the fact that they have the GPS co-ordinances for every campground in Mexico, made it a snap to especially find the campgrounds in busy cities,like the last one in Oaxaca.
They also have camping books covering Europe,Alaska and many different US areas,they are based in Seattle and have a great website called http://www.rollinghomes.com/
I had just arrived early Sunday afternoon and was setting up my satellite dish when Terri came over to say hi and to tell me that they are regular readers of my blog and she also told me of some of the side trips she read about on my blog that they tried.Actually many of my side trips were originally from their book,I guess I just expanded the info a little more.
Marlene and I last met them 9 years ago in Alamo Sonora when we were carrying their 1st edition and I pointed out a needed change in the map of Teacapan and gave them a bit of an update on the campgrounds in that area.Mike took it all down and the following year their 2nd edition came out with the changes and included our names in the credits.
All in all I find it a bit humbling that these well travelled folks are actually following my blog.It really is a thrill for me.I’ll have to asked them where they found it.
Last but not least,thank you again for all the nice comments,and encouragement in the comments section.To answer Croft’s question,no I don't think overloading was a factor as I have always been very careful in that regard,(actually I’m a fussy old fart) and try to let the truck carry most of the heavier stuff as the trailer is an ultra light weight.It was just a couple of real bad TOPE’s that I didn't see,that lead up to the final failure.9 years of Mexico travel plus this past summer with an over 800 mile round trip of punishment on the Dempster Highway to Inuvik NWT and back…..Well I guess something has to finally give:)