the

Sunset near Kingman, Arizona.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona.

Where are they going next? South east towards Roswell, New Mexico.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Sherman is broken... again!

We were on the road yesterday morning at about 7:15am. Made our way through the already busy town of Juchitan, and headed north on the 185 up towards the main east west toll road, the 145D.

Our planned 622 km (386 mile) drive was ambitious. If we wanted to make it to Trailer Park Las Americas on the far side of Puebla, there would be very little time for rest breaks.

But, we woke up with the plan in mind, so we stuck to it.

Yesterday's drive, 622 kms (386 miles).

Very windy down near Juchitan.


Highway 185 north goes through a lot of villages, with a lot of topes, and a lot of truck traffic. Oh, and don't forget the road construction...


Entering the state of Vercruz.

Yup. Lots of traffic.

After four hours of non-stop driving, we had completed 180 kms (112 miles).

From there, we got on the 145D toll road. Still pretty busy, but at least we could make some good time. It's a major four lane highway. 

And, the highway was in pretty good condition.

Lots of fields of pineapples.

We drove on that for a couple of hours. 

I ended up driving 7 hours straight, non-stop. Not even a pee break! I don't think I've ever driven non-stop like that in my life.

When we stopped, we had a quick lunch and got back on the road. Only one other stop to refuel, and then back on the road again. Now it was time to tackle the mountains as we rose in altitude towards Mexico City.

Heading towards the mountains.

Going up.

Still lots of traffic.

Some beautiful views, but it was a bit hazy.


The Orizaba Volcano. Highest peak in Mexico, and 3rd highest in North America.
The birds like this tree.

We had made it to the outskirts of Puebla around 5:30pm and there was ony 27 kms (17 miles) to go to get to Trailer Park Las Americas in Cholula, the other side of Puebla.

That's when it happened.

The temporary repair done by the mechanics in Juchitan did not last. Without warning, the right lower ball joint disconnected again, and Sherman ground to a halt at the side of the busy highway. 

Poor Sherman!

By 6:30pm, a tow truck had stopped. 

His truck wasn't big enough to help, but he called in a big rig unit. Now, this was a tow truck! Sorry I didn't get a photo of it... there just wasn't an opportunity. But this was a heavy duty rig. 

Both drivers worked to get Sherman stabilized and up in the air. For this truck, it was effortless. 

By now it was after 7:00pm and dark. We decided to have Sherman towed to the campground. This way, we could analyze what parts were necessary, get them ordered from the states, and have the repairs done when all the parts had arrived. And, we can stay in Sherman until this all takes place.

Frustrated? 

Yep.

But at least this time he broke down at a major city and it was easier to get a tow truck to help. The towing bill this time was 3,800 pesos ($270 CAD, $210 USD), much more reasonable than the 15,000 peso bill the last time. We knew we were being ripped off the last time, but we had no choice. Especially after being stuck at the side of the road for 28 hours.

Sherman, arriving at the campground!

And, we did in fact make it to the campground! Not the way we wanted to, but we are here.

Anyhow, it is what it is. This time, we will get the correct parts and do the job properly.

Today, Ruth will go on tour with the group, while I stay here and get Sherman's parts ordered.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fantastic deal on a 25 ft, 30 amp RV extension cord... record low price...


And in Canada...






40 comments:

  1. Oh no! That's a real bummer Kevin.

    I'm glad it happened where it did. Bet you both are exhausted from the stress of it all.

    At least now you are more comfortable and can get things fixed right. Good luck.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yep, exhausted for sure, especially after a really long driving day and then to have to break down once again. Thankfully this time things went a lot smoother and we are comfortable in Sherman in a campground in a nice area with lots of things to do. Now we just need to wait for the parts to show up and get Sherman fixed up and back on the road.

      Delete
  2. Oh no! But, OK, so so so glad you were able to rejoin the group in Sherman, which must have gone a long way to minimize the stress you were surely feeling!

    Someone wise once told me two things, 1) If it can be fixed with money or time it ain't a tragedy, and 2) Regardless, Time + Tragedy = Humor. So, clearly much, much humor in your future over all this. Eventually!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All is good, at least we are in a big city and getting a tow was easy and with the correct kind of truck. We are set up in the campground so all is good. Looks like we will be here for a while but like you it can be fixed and it will need both time and money. We are frustrated but still smiling! :-)

      Delete
  3. And that is the problem with make shift repairsrepairs. But sometimes it is the only choice you have.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, sometimes there is no choice! Kevin had a look at the repair yesterday and said it would have worked if they had only made the weld a little stronger at the time but you wouldn't have known that until after the fact.

      Delete
  4. Kevin, check your email. I think I have the fastest solution worked out for you to get Sherman back on the road in the shortest time. My buddy, Mexico Mike Nelson is willing to help you out, hopefully you will be able to catch up here in Melaque with the 2 groups if things time out well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the suggestion Paul, Kevin did take that into consideration but finally decided to order it from Amazon.mex which gets the product from the States and then ships it to Mexico. This seemed the best option overall.

      We should be able to meet in Melaque before you head north.

      Delete
  5. dang. so sorry this happened. Sherman sure has given you a lot of good times. He is tired.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We are sorry it happened as well but nothing can be done about except to move on. Yes, Sherman has given us lots of good times, perhaps a little tired but we will get him fixed up and rejuvenated so that we can continue to have many more adventures in him. :-)

      Delete
  6. What a bummer. On the bright side, you're back with the group and in a larger city to get parts and offers of help posted :-)

    ReplyDelete
  7. You really are having a DANG time of it.
    By the way, Veracruz is an interesting town.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When we were in the Veracruz area in January it was such a miserable wet day that we never made it into Veracruz itself so hopefully we will get that chance again some other time, maybe even next year.

      Delete
  8. Not good :( But thought that if you have a breakdown on a toll road the tow is free. Guess that's probably to the nearest mechanic shop not a campground :(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Neither one of our breakdowns were on the toll road! Both times we were about 10km's or less short of being on one. :-(

      We are not sure how far they would have towed us had we been on one.

      Delete
  9. Glad to hear you made it to the campground at least it could have been a much worse situation if it had happened earlier in your drive. Good to know your both safe. Hopefully you will get Sherman fixed properly this time and can continue your travels with some peace of mind. Lovely scenery on your drive. Keep safe.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Again we have run all the different scenarios through our minds and yes, what happened was probably one of the best places, the best place would have been 4km's on because then we would have been on a toll road and the tow would have been free but where we ended up breaking down was definitely not the worst place.

      Now we just have to wait for the parts to come but there is a lot to see and do in the area so we certainly won't be sitting around and moping about it. :-)

      Delete
  10. Oh dear...we are so sorry for yet more trouble. So glad you are safe in the campground! Sending up a pray that they can get the parts very quickly.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We are happy to be at a campground to wait out the delivery on the parts. We are in a place with lots of things to see and do so we certainly won't be bored.

      Delete
  11. Well, at least you are sleeping in Sherman! Puebla is a large city where repairs should not be a problem. I must say I am surprised the tow truck was able to get you through the gate to the Las Americas park. It is a narrow gate from a narrow street.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We are so happy to be living in Sherman and in a good location.

      No, we shouldn't have a problem finding someone to fix him here. We had a very good tow truck driver. I was nervous that he wouldn't get through the gate as well. He had phoned ahead and got a buddy to come and help direct him in, they definitely knew what to do and a little maneuvering forwards and backwards did the trick.

      Delete
  12. So sorry to read about your problems.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hopefully you will soon be reading about good news! :-)

      Delete
  13. I know that sinking feeling especially on a busy highway. Wish we were there for moral support because I think we could have some fun at it. You're right though, close to a major city and best of all you were very close to your destination.

    Truly sorry to hear that. Scotch?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We wish you were here too Chris. Hey do you and Juan want to fly down to Puebla for a quick visit, we will be here for a few days! ;-)

      Kevin definitely enjoyed a glass or two of scotch that evening, and me a glass or two of wine.

      Delete
  14. I suspect the general now needs a new complete lower control arm assembly. Hang in there Sherman....a new knee is on its way.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kevin checked out the lower arm and was surprised that it seems fine. He didn't order a new one but we will perhaps look into it again once we are back in the States.

      Delete
  15. No Stress... No Stress..............

    ReplyDelete
  16. Soon Sherman will be good as new for many more years of service.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

    ReplyDelete
  17. So sorry to hear this news. Hang in there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We are, thanks! I just finished saying the other day that I would like more time to explore the Puebla area, now we have that time. :-)

      Delete
  18. Oh dear! So sorry to hear about Sherman and hats off to you for staying positive and good natured about all this. Sending good vibes your way and prayers that this is “the end” of your troubles with Sherman. Good luck and safe travels.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There is not much else we can do but stay positive, it doesn't do any good to dwell on things you can't change, it will only make you miserable.

      Delete
  19. Oops not fun but at least you did not have to wait hours for the tow truck and are in Sherman in a campground. Good luck with the right parts and a speedy repair.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nope this breakdown went a lot better than the last in so many ways.

      We should have Sherman fixed up right this time but it will just take a little time.

      Delete
  20. So thankful you are in a safe place uncomfortable. We are agonizing right along with you as we read each day. You really got in a lot of miles on the repaired pieces. Hope everything goes good for a complete restoration!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We are actually looking forward to spending some time exploring the area. There is certainly lots to see and do and it will also be nice just to relax and get caught up on a few things.

      Yes, we did cover a lot of ground that one day on that repair especially considering some of the roads we had to drive on.

      Delete

We love hearing from you! Please take the time to leave a comment...