Lake Prespa and the village of Pustec, Albania.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? On our way to Gjyrokaster, Albania .

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Berat, Albania on October 12th.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Happy that Sherman is back to his old self!

Yesterday morning, I was going to change Sherman's spark plugs before leaving, and while the engine was still cool. I was all set to do the job, and I went to grab my spark plug socket...and it had vanished. It wasn't in it's normal spot with the other sockets. It was just gone.

No idea where. I think the last time I used it was changing the spark plugs in the little blue car in Mexico in 2013!

Anyhow, that meant driving about 100 kms (62 miles) into the town of Cochrane, Ontario (pop 5,300). Sure enough, Sherman made it , but still not running the way he should be.

I stopped at the Canadian Tire on the outskirts of town, but do you think they had a spark plug socket? Nope. I couldn't believe it.

So, then into town to the NAPA store, where they didn't have one either. Unreal. I asked them to break open a socket kit and sell me just the plug socket and thankfully they did.

Found a nice park in Cochrane to stop and do the job.

Thanks Cochrane Telecom Services!

Wood carving at the park.

Swans in the lake.

So, now I've got the spark plug socket, but I don't have the right size extension to get the ratchet on to the socket. I was so frustrated! I don't mind doing mechanical work when I have the right tools to do the job. And I carry quite a few tools in the motorhome, but every now and then I need something else.

So I walked back up to the NAPA store and bought a 3" 3/8 drive extension. 

Now, I could do it. I changed the first plug that had been the one that was misfiring originally. Still, it looked in pretty good shape. Fairly clean, and not fouled at all.

The next one, I took off the plug wire and tested the resistance. Nothing. That's not right. So I used another one of the plug wires from the wrong set I had bought a few days ago. And, I changed that plug too. Again, the plug looked pretty good.

Now, I was pretty sure that if I went to change the next plug I would risk messing up the plug wires and I was running out of ones that would fit.

So I stopped there.

And sure enough, Sherman is running perfectly. So, it was another bad plug wire. When we make it to Ottawa I'll buy the proper kit and change them all, as well as the rest of the plugs. But at least I seem to have the problem beat for now.

Big lumberjack?

Scenery along the way.

More scenery along the way.

Meanwhile, we had been in contact with Lorne and Sue, the couple we had met in Manitoba. They have been putting quite a few miles on each day, since they left after us and were now about caught up. They were only a couple of hundred kms (120 miles) behind us and were asking where we were stopping for the night.

But they are heading for North Bay, and we are going into Quebec. The turn off point is at the town of Matheson, so I said we would wait for them there.

The Black River in Matheson

We made it to Matheson, and went looking for a suitable spot. Keeping in mind, that Lorne and Sue have a big rig and are towing a vehicle so they are a little more limited than us.

I stopped into the local police station and asked the one cop on duty about a suitable spot. I pointed out a big church parking lot, and he said we would be fine there. So we went over to the church, and there was a car outside so I went in and spoke to the pastor. He said we would be fine to spend the night there.

Sure enough, Lorne and Sue showed up around 6:00pm after a long driving day. We each had supper in our own rigs and then got together for some conversation. Hopefully we'll see them again when they come through Saskatchewan next May. 

After all, it does say "ALL WELCOME"!

Yesterday's drive, 181 kms (112 miles).

2,410 kms down, 700 to go!
1,500 miles down, 430 to go!

Today, we're into the province of Quebec! Nous devons pratiquer notre français!

A variety of Westinghouse small kitchen appliances are on Deal of the Day today...


  1. Finally, Sherman is well again!
    Kevin, you sound just like Paul. He hates doing any job unless he has all the right tools. I never hear more swearing than when he can't find a tool.

    1. Yes, Sherman is so much happier now! :-)

      Kevin said a few choice words under his breath but he would still rather do the job himself than pay to have someone else do it.

  2. Now that you've bought the new plug socket, the old one will turn up. It happens to me all the time, must be a tool gremlin or something. ;c)

    1. And that may very well happen but we have our doubts!

  3. Everytime I want to do a job I usually need a new tool, my 50 year ones are different sizes etc. than the newer one for jobs. It can be frustrating.
    Glad that Sherman is happy again.

    1. Yes, it is frustrating but even more so when you know you had the right tool for the job but it is nowhere to be found. :-(

  4. And here I have at least four or five plug sockets, and all I ever do is change the plug in the lawn mower! Sucks when things go "missing". Pretty sure around here if it goes "missing", it hasn't just walked off. I've likely put it somewhere and can't remember where. Somewhere on the road though? Never know who is watching and waiting.

    1. Where were you when we needed you Bob! ;-)

      We don't think anyone would go to the trouble of going through the compartments and the toolbox and take just the spark plug socket. It probably got set down somewhere and then forgotten. Oh, well it is all in the past now.

  5. I probably carry 50 pounds of tools in the motorhome and every year Norma asks me if I really need all those tools. The answer is, "hopefully not".

  6. Kevin, I have to say I am very impressed with your ability to fix things! I am amazed on what you can do to keep Sherman going! Thanks for sharing your travels with everyone!


    1. Kevin has always been mechanically inclined, especially with vehicles. It certainly makes a difference when the vehicle is an older one because he can look at it an knows what is what. These newer ones aren't so easy with all the electronics involved.

      Glad you have been enjoying our travels and adventures. We are certainly going to have some good ones this winter. :-)

  7. No plug sockets at Cdn Tire and NAPA!!!??? Unreal.....but I guess with so many vehicles with direct ignition, spark plugs may be a thing of the past. Except of course outboards, chainsaws and lawnmowers etc, etc.

  8. Years ago "Lucy" my Winnebago was spitting as you said...It was just the spark-plug wires.
    Sheesh!..I was thinking the worst since I had just became her new parent....
    Glad it worked out for you....

    1. It is nice when it turns out to be a fairly simple and not too expensive fix to have your motorhome running smoothly once again. Glad it was just an easy fix for you too!


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