We are in NY and camping on Manhattan Island...I bet its the cheapest accommodation in NY. We found the queue to get in a bit much even on Thanksgiving at 2pm. The queue for the tunnel was mammoth. We couldn't use the tunnel....damn !!! Gas bottle on roof = banned. So we had to drive to a bridge and pay the $13usd toll. The tunnel is the same toll. Damn expensive.
You will see for the map where we camped. Nice little park on the side of the road. No charge just we had to move at midday for street cleaning.
Yesterday we parked right next to Times Square as there was no parking restrictions as its a holiday but didn't camp and instead moved to the park. Henning paid $40usd per night for parking. You should have left it on the street and put your cover over it Henning. There's loads of GS's parked on the road here.
Some photos of Ohio when we stayed a Sean and Debbs's (LOL, private joke as its Debb NOT Debbs).
Also photos of the garage and the offending bearing.
There's one shot of the Super 8 Hotel where we stayed. Note the McDonald's. We drove there in true LA Story style. All of 50 meters....maybe less.
There's a photo of our friends the Kiwis (she has the same hat so I could not resist) and can you spot Matilda in Times Square....????
some times you just want to scream and I know some of you know what I mean....
This morning the diff lock lamp was on ( don't know if its in lock or not = bad ). The switch they broke was again broken. Not a good soldering job. I am unable to fix it and my second hand spare isn't great. The linkage isn't set up correctly.....why did I ever think it would be....it took me hours to set it up in the UK. There's a plastic clip missing from the linkage that was there. I know it was as I put it there last time the box was out. So that's been lost. I cannot fall off and can only come out if the linkage is disconnected.
The mechanic said "I'll just tighten everything up" when he'd last set the linkage. Nothing is tight and everything is loose. In fact I undid the diff-lock switch with my fingers. The same fingers I used to tighten it up ! The Hi-Low link is finger tight. The Diff-Lock locking bolt isn't done up at all. The lock-nut on the transfer diff-lock lever is loose. Its been re-used !
I can guess why they re-used the M8 lock nut. The USA is all Imperial. I have loads in my box....
Who knows what else is wrong.
I'm going to amend the rule of overlanding. Superseding rule number 1 which is NEVER DRIVE AT NIGHT and straight in at #0.5 is NEVER LET ANOTHER PERSON TOUCH YOUR CAR ! Three times has this happened and two times there have been major issues afterwards, like this. We still have a partial problem from the first time. Second was a disaster and this is getting there....
Not that they are in the South but he's a Southerner....Ohio is Northern but Sean comes from about a far south as you can get in the UK.
Thanks Sean and Debb(s) ((LOL)) for allowing us to stay and keeping me sane for a week. We did drink a great deal to allow this to happen.....at least me and Sean did.
Someday I will repay the kindness and hospitality to all the people we have stayed with for one reason or another.
We are nearly in New York. Less than 200miles to go. We will miss the Balloons parade (think Stay Puff Marsh-mellow Man in Ghostbusters) as it starts tomorrow at 9am. That's if its not too windy and forecast is WIND ! So we are missing nothing......hopefully.
Comments back open....sorry.
Accidentally closed comments. Now back open.
November 27th, 2013
So the garage did a efficient job getting us on our way. We left there about lunchtime Tuesday. A few problems with the diff-lock lever which I knew we would. Last time it took me ages to get it working in the correct position. Same this time. Mechanic knew what he was doing after I explained what I did last time. We did manage to break the relay though and this was repaired with a bit of soldering.
I don't think I saw a single use of a torque wrench in the repair or indeed thread-lock. Not to say I don't trust them, but I don't. I think he thread-locked the prop bolt which we re-used although I do have a new set.
I know I threadlock every bolt and do things perfectly and do not cut corners at all. However, having seen some garages miss bolts off not torque anything up I will not be confident that its been fitted 100% correctly for many many months. Even the lack of threadlock freaks me out let alone the torque wrench....
They might be wonderful....I do worry. However a bolt did fall out the bottom of the car about a mile after we left so we went back. Turns out they lost it and replaced it which I'm confident they did as I'd seen a new bolt when I was under the car in the shop.....
At least we are moving. Now I hope the oil is OK....first time we've used this brand and I still think the other oil was the culprit. We are now trying to figure out if we can send the box back for the core refund.
After a under-informed weekend we were told early morning that our worse fear was realised, the box was still in Chicago....well...
I need not tell you I was upset and possibly nearly in tears. The money that this would have cost to rectify isn't worth mentioning. This was a major fcukup. After calling Alice at DHL (who's been great) we found out after half an hour that actually it was in Indianapolis and we could collect it.....Happy was an understatement.
So the box is now in the garage in Columbus,IN. We are in McDonald's and about to go back to see if i can help.....It kills me when someone touches the car.
Car rented and good news that the box should be in Indianapolis DHL Warehouse for Monday morning. We will go to pick it up in the Ford Focus we've just rented ($150 one week) The DHL fee is now $70 which we can pay cash when we visit the office to collect the paperwork. We then go to the airport to get the box and pay customs some more money ($39). Once we have the 60kg item in the boot of the car we will take it to Columbus, IN.
Best laid plans.....and all that....
The box has moved a bit and we've found out we might be able to clear the customs ourselves without using a broker. Saving a grand sum of $201usd. We will still need to pay a $9usd fee and the duty at 2.5%
We need to wait for some paperwork and then we need to figure out how we get it from Indianapolis and get it to Columbus, IN. This may involve renting a car and collecting the box and taking it to Columbus and staying in a hotel. When all is done taking Matilda and the rental car back to Greenville to make a break for Newark. At least that's the plan. At the moment.
The guys a DHL have been helpful and having spent the entire day on the phone we've even spoken to customs in Indianapolis who also seem very helpful. It all rests on the Invoice having my name on it, which it does (almost). So if the customs are being as helpful as today then we should be able to clear it.
The box should be in USA tomorrow but not in Indiana.
I've agreed a fixed price with the garage and they've started taking the car apart in afvance so we get a head start.
Gears of War....
Little has happened since the previous update. We have now been told we need a broker to clear the box through customs. The duty according to the web is 2.5% which is nothing. However we know the couriers add on mucho $$ if they process this so we need to find a way of minimising that.
We need to let the garage know whats happening tomorrow and then figure out how we get to the airport and where we stay for the few nights we may be in Columbus, Indiana. Hotels are not cheap. I doubt we can sleep in the garage.
Did you know that DHL express have fancy call centres and DHL Global Freight do not....we do. That took an hour on the phone to get to the right person.
Jim, if only it were Friday delivery.....i'd get some sleep rather than have to wake at 4am to call England at 9am. Then get up every hour after that to check Emails to see if everything is moving along.
Failure to Launch...
We've been let down a bit by the gearbox people and even though they got me a box though the repair bench early they failed to get the delivery arranged so its being collected today (Tuesday). It seems though it might not be here till Wednesday next week. They say it "might" be Monday. Monday I can live with as long as customs do thier bit. If its Wednesday we are are completely screwed unless, customs do their bit and they can finish it (installed) on Friday. Thursday is Thanksgiving ! The biggest holiday in the USA. So Wednesday gives us one day to get in installed. They are closed Sat and Sun.
We are hoping it arrives Monday (early) and we can get it to the shop Tuesday for fitting maybe running into Wednesday.
If the box is delayed we will need to spend even more money. Money we cannot afford. We will need to rent a car, one way to New York. This also means Hotels. Lots of Hotels. These are easily $70 a night over here. The car on one way is also a fortune. You can get one week normal rental for the same as one day on one way drop off....!!!!
We at least know its booked on a flight here this Thursday for arrival Thursday. This means they have Friday, Sat and Sun to get it to Indianapolis for us to pick it up at the airport, maybe Monday. Fingers Crossed ! (customs is going to be the problem)
Gearbox is built and its in the UK. We are waiting for a shipping quote and to find out when it gets here.
Fingers crossed but they are not confident they can get it here by Friday. It does weigh 60kgs after all. Not like its an envelope....
It looks as though its the gearbox. New one on order from the UK. EXPENSIVE when you include shipping and fitting. Our budget is knackered for sure. This is a $3000usd problem.
We think the box should be here next Friday. We are luckily near a freinds house in Ohio. More importantly they are happy for us to crash here for a week. Maybe more. Matilda is alone in the Garage awaiting the part. We have De-camped from her in one of the rare occasions on this trip. At least my stress level is lower now we have a defined plan of action. I did not get much sleep last night.
So, if Ashcrofts come through with the new box and ship it out monday we might still be on schedule for Xmas at home. Otherwise we mght be ranting a car to get us to Newark.
Problems in Walmart....grinding sound on idle and when moving coming from the rear of the bell housing. My thoughts are input bearing on gearbox. A big job to take it out involving stripping the entire box.
So its either Gearbox or Clutch which are almost knackered. We can move but should we ? Looking for help from the helpful Land Rover community and some mechanics.
If its the clutch we have the parts. If its the gearbox its gonna get expensive....
Try to keep this updated but its the last thing on my mind.
Was it the gearbox oil I put in not one week ago !
Meet me in St Louis....
Few days of driving with a few noteable photos, some camping and some Birds. The Peabody Ducks no less. The shots are terrible and the little feathered critters shot across the red carpet in about 1 millisecond so nothing of note there. If you look carefully you will see the smudge on the photo. Free entertainment that we missed many years ago as they do it only twice a day. Once down from their penthouse and once up.
It been cold here. Certainly well below freezing each night. Thankfully the Webasto is working ! I've had a bad back so i've been on the meds again. Possibly the cold off the window at night. Anyhow I've have 2 good nights out of the last 4 so can't complain (yet). If it continues we shall see how good my travel insurance is and I'll see If i can get some of those pain meds we hear all the stars are taking....if they get me high, all the better. I'll have a night off the wine.
Matilda is doing fine. Need some new tyres soon. Anybody know where I can get some cheap.....or free ? This is where knowing the right people come in to its own. The area manager for BFG would be good. Head office told me to go away quite politely.
The Arch in St Louis is worth the trip. Always wanted to see it. $7usd with our parks pass. $10 without one. Scary leaning over to see the view. The teleport pods that get you to the top are retro fantastic. Excellent off peak. We also found a full bag of souveniers which we handed in. How do you drop a bag full of paid for souveniers complete with credit card receipt ? Anyhow, I hope they get em back. (there was nothing we wanted or have room for !)
We are gradually picking up stuff to bring back home. Nothing exciting just some soap for Mum and some cream for Mum....and something else for Mum....did I mention we've only purchased about 5 things in 2 years for ourselves.....no room. The soap isn't yet driving me mad as its found a place. Julies Hat on the other had is driving me mad.....did I mention she got a hat in Bolivia....worn twice.... its got a cable wrapped round it so its got a use.
No news is good news I suppose. We hope to post some pictures in the next few days. We've not been doing much except driving to get to New York. We might meet up with an Ex-Pat in a few days. Someone from Railway days which was a good long time ago. Did you know I worked for the Railway ? I suppose more than 50% of the reader did. Anyhow Sean Quinn....we might see you soon.
We've back tracked a little to St Louis to see something i've never seen before. Can you guess what it is?
I've just read an article in the New York Times (I know!) and its about another group of overlanders getting people to pay for their trip well this got me thinking.....
Any takers on paying £1 a month to read our blog. That's £12 per year....If we can get the 800 regular readers paying then we can live on the road forever. We'll even give you a free sticker.... (well actually its £12).....
Yeah right.....PayPal the money to us will you. Come on its only £12....
Just in case you want to......PayPal it here.
I'm sure £1 per month isn't going to break the bank and all we need is 800 of you to do it....ALL TOGETHER NOW.....
Its a bit cold in Utah and Colorado. It must have been at most -5c last night and well under freezing. For the first time we camped in Walmart.
We're on our way to some other overlanders near Denver. Kiwipanamerica no less. Last time we saw them they were in Bolivia.
Its been snowing on and off on the road side and its not going to get any better. Not problem but cooking outside gets a bit chilly.....
Photos of Canyonlands (Needles) and the Arches national parks. Its been 4 days since a shower. Its worse than Africa !
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