Nice sunset view as we pass over London, England, on our way to Albania.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Shkodra, Albania.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Hiking the Peaks of the Balkans, June 13-24!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Another productive day

Went into the town of Arnprior today and to their DMV office. One person in line in front of us, and we were in and out of there in less than 10 minutes. Paid $10 to replace my lost drivers license.

But the other thing I wanted to do there is get a license plate renewal sticker for Sherman that is good until February of 2014 and I thought that might be a problem. Our current sticker expires in February 2012, but we will be in Mexico. We can definitely get a sticker that expires February 2013, but we still plan on being in Mexico then, possibly until May of 2013. The lady said that it can be done, but it involves making a special request that has to be approved. She said that it is easier to wait until we are within a six month window of the current expiry and that's not until after August 7th so we'll return next week.

Then we went to the hardware store and got some keys cut. We've never had a complete set of spare keys for the motorhome, which is just stupid. Why has it taken us over three years to get this done? No idea. Anyhow, it's done now and we also got one of those magnetic key cases that you hide until you may someday need it. By that time we'll probably forget where we hid it!

Doing a little bit of repair and maintenance work to Sherman every day. Besides removing the TV to make more storage space, we are also removing the microwave. We hardly ever use it, mostly because we're hardly ever hooked up to electricity. We can use it with the inverter and batteries, but hardly ever do. Besides, it's big and heavy and the space it occupies will make another great cabinet.

No more microwave!

Ruth took everything out of the fridge and gave it a major cleaning. While she was doing that, I did some research on our generator problem. I'm pretty sure I mentioned this at some point, but our generator stopped working about a year and a half ago. Again, we hardly ever use it because our solar panels and batteries setup works for our needs. What was happening was that you could start it, but it would only stay running if you held the start button on. And the output voltage was wacky. At the time, everything I looked at pointed towards a new voltage regulator which costs about $250. Because we don't use it anyhow, we couldn't justify spending the money.

But, I found online the 138 page service and troubleshooting manual for the Kohler 5CKM21 Genset. It gave a pretty detailed description of what could be the problem when this symptom occurs. It said that it could be low oil pressure, or the low oil pressure sensor. I tested it though and it appeared to be working properly. Then, it said that if output voltage isn't correct it could be the cause. I knew it wasn't right, so followed that up. It turns out there's a 5 amp fuse for the voltage regulator. But the fuse checked out okay. There's another 5 amp fuse for a de-icing unit on the carburetor. Just for fun, I switched the fuses and the fuse holder around. To my surprise, the generator fired up and kept running! Turned out to be a bad connection in the fuse holder! Very happy with that outcome!

There is only two reasons we need the generator. One example is when we were in Nova Scotia and it was cold and overcast for days on end. We didn't have enough sun for the batteries and we had to use the furnace . The furnace uses propane, but also needs a lot of electricity for the fan. We could have used the generator at the time. Also, we would use the generator when it's very hot to put the air conditioner on when we leave Whiskey behind. It doesn't happen often, but it would be nice to have the option available to us. Anyhow, I've fixed it and am very pleased with myself!

Another beautiful day here with blue sky and sunshine. 


  1. You did have a productive day especially with the generator, nice you took the time to research and check things out for a cheap fix. It does come in handy once in a while.

  2. WoW you are really getting alot done... how do you cook if not in a microwave??? Ours is our oven too!
    Have fun

  3. Isn't it wonderful when something turns out to be a quick, easy and cheap fix. I like my microwave. So I couldn't give that one up.

  4. Heading to a DMV office is always an annoying process. Glad it went so well:)

  5. what a great and cheap quick fix..just think if you would have looked into it earlier!?

  6. I've never completely understood the point of the microwave. And yes, I know some folks use them, but for the ten years we had our motorhome, I can't think of using it even once. Used the oven, cook top, and grill. (outside of course)
    We've been living in Vienna for almost two years without one. Took a bit of getting used to, but completely do-able. Reheating food can be a challenge, unless of course you just don't have left overs. I try not to have left overs. Simply really.
    Unless it's some sort of fancy convection thing, and you always have access to 110, it's mostly just extra weight and unused storage.
    Between it and the crt TV, you almost have enough extra CCC for a small pony.
    Go for it!

  7. I like that fix for the generator sometimes we get lucky. We are on the road to Cape Breton with cloudy showery weather.

  8. Way to go guys....glad the generator fix was so easy for you:)....Can't remove my micro as its also a convection oven which I use all the nice for you to have the extra storage space !!!! Stay safe~~hugs

  9. Need to think carefully where you spot the magnetic key holder, I had one fall of into oblivion somewhere on my big truck!! Love being able to solve mechanical problems myself! Congrats!

  10. Good job! You just reminded me that I need to clean our refrigerator! I must have missed something somewhere...I didn't know you were going to Mexico for such a long time.

  11. George and Suzie...A lot of the time these things just need a bit of research to fix the problem.

    Donna...Sherman is an older model so he still has a stove. I don't think we would buy a unit without a stove as we do too much boondocking.

    Jim and Sandie...We are so happy that it was a cheap fix but not really quick as he has tried to fix it 2 or 3 times before with no success.

    Chuck and Anneke...So are we, thanks!

    Sue and Doug...Kevin had spent a lot of time trying to find the proper manual online for the generator but without any success. He was finally able to find it the other day and that was all he needed. We are just happy to have it fixed without being out of pocket.

    Bob...Yep, that is exactly how we do our cooking. I just have to remember to take things out of the freezer in the morning to thaw in time to make our dinner. We try not to have leftovers either. Kevin says the microwave and TV are so old that they are really only good for boat anchors, even though they both work perfectly fine.

    Rick and Elaine...That's the problem with the newer motorhomes, they all come with microwave/convection ovens. That just wouldn't work for us. Hope you have good weather for your trip to Cape Breton. Enjoy yourselves!

    Trkdrivinfool...I think Kevin has placed it somewhere safe that we wouldn't lose it, I guess time will tell. Kevin also likes to solve these problems himself, thanks.

    where's weaver...Refrigerator is done, now it's the oven. Those are the plans, but plans are never concrete.

    Kevin, Ruth and Whiskey

  12. Fuses are a constant source of problem.

    Glad you got your situation sorted out. We use our generator all the time but only for 10 minutes or so at a time if cooking or to heat up the RV on cold AM's and to use the A/C when stopping for lunch on the road in the RV. Too hot to cook otherwise.

  13. Contessa...Yes they are! Glad to hear that your problem got sorted out as well. It is always worse when you are on the road. It is times like that, that we are happy not to have all the bells and whistles on Sherman. It seems the more electricial stuff your have the more likely there are to be problems. I remember we had a really hard time with our furnance our first year out when we crossed Canada in late October and November and twice we blew a fuse on the furnance. First time we paid to have it fixed and Kevin watched as the guy did it. Second time he was able to do it himself. Found out what caused the problem and made sure that we didn't do that agian.

    Kevin, Ruth and Whiskey


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