Linda was scheduled to go to the bakery this morning but rescheduled to tomorrow due to last night’s weather forecast and the possibility of flooded highways in Detroit. The morning rush hour traffic is bad under the best of conditions and flooded roadways can make it near impossible. She also did not sleep well and woke up tired.
The Apex roofing crew started showing up just before 8 AM and the Wimsatt truck showed up with the shingles a little after 8 AM. They brought a conveyor truck this time and were able to get the shingles off the truck and onto the roof without difficulty. The Apex crew did not waste any time getting to work. It turned out to be a great day for roofing; clear skies, no rain, moderate temperatures, lower humidity, and some breeze. Even so, it is work that is done without the benefit of shade and roofs are hot places to work even on the nicest of days.
Linda continued working on the financials for our amateur radio club while I checked my e-mail. I had a reply from RV Critter Guard telling me what to order and how much it would cost. I placed the order through their website and used PayPal to complete the transaction. I tried calling the concrete contractor that Phil recommended (Bid Rite Concrete LLC in Whitmore Lake) but the phone would disconnect after the first ring and revert to a dial tone. Perhaps the recent storms caused a problem but I e-mailed Phil to see if he had a different number for them. I called the Henry Ford Medical Center in West Bloomfield and made dermatology appointments for myself and Linda.
With all of that taken care of I turned my attention to the bus. The toilet is a Microphor LF-210. It uses pressurized air to operate the waste valve and the water valve and to help push the waste through the drain pipe and into the black tank. To remove the toilet I had to undo three connections—air, water, and waste—and take out the four screws securing it to the floor. If only it was as easy as that makes it sound.
Undoing the air line was easy and undoing the water connection only a little less so. The waste connection was another matter. The 1.5″ black plastic drain pipe was routed from the water bay through the floor and into the HVAC chase that runs along the driver’s side of the coach. The converter, Royale Coach, brought it out through a hole in the wood that covers the chase, making it impossible to take the wood cover off. The pipe then made two right angle bends, the first one towards the floor and the second one towards the back of the toilet. The waste pipe was connected to the toilet discharge pipe with a length of rubber hose and a compression sleeve.
The toilet has a large hole in the back for all of these lines to pass through to the inside where they get hooked up. It should have been a simple matter to slide the toilet away from the wall/chase but the last bend in the drain line was below the top edge of the bottom of the hole, preventing it from coming out. After wiggling the toilet enough to get the rubber hose loose from the drain pipe I was able to lift the drain pipe just enough to slide the toilet out. I took pictures for a possible BCM article on our interior remodeling project and then Linda helped me move the toilet out of the bathroom to the front of the coach.
The more I disassemble this coach the more stupid I think the design and construction of its systems are. I don’t know that coaches from Marathon, Liberty, Vantare, Featherlight, Parliament, Millennium, Custom Coach, or any of a dozen other companies that have come and gone, is any better as I have never tried to disassemble one of them. These are one-of-kind vehicles that are custom built specifically for the original purchaser and the over-riding factor in every case is the interior design. Stuff, like toilets, go where the customer wants it, and systems, which are generally buried and hidden from view, get built wherever and however they can be made to fit. The converter does not expect to have to repair or replace anything during the very short 12 month, 12,000 miles, warranty period and if stuff breaks after that, or someone wants to do a remodel or upgrade sometime later, it will all be time and material. How difficult it is to do, and how many hours it takes, is someone else’s problem at that point.
We had a call from Butch updating us on a possible property purchase. They are waiting for a clear title search before making an offer. The property includes a house and a sizable barn. The barn needs a new roof and the house will have to be gutted and the inside rebuilt, but for the right price it will still be a good deal. They already have a good estimate to replace the barn roof and since they are now retired they have more time to work on the house than they would have a year ago. They also have family and friends who can help. Besides, they still have their home/business building in Twelve Mile, Indiana and their bus, which they lived in all this past winter, so they will not be under any pressure to get the inside rebuilt quickly.
Linda started downloading updates from Adobe Creative Cloud, which take a very long time, and then left at 3:30 PM for Ann Arbor. She agreed to take care of grand-daughter Madeline while Brendan and Shawna attended a reception at the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor for newly tenured and promoted faculty. I was on my own for dinner and Linda bought an Amy’s pizza so I would have something easy to prepare.
The roofers finished up for the day around 5 PM. By the time they left most of the trash was in their dumpster trailer and the roof was tarped as a precaution against rain even though the forecast for tonight and tomorrow is for dry weather. Rain returns to the forecast tomorrow night into Thursday but turns dry again on Friday, so we are optimistic that they will get the job finished this week. It’s a big job but Apex has a big crew working on it and they got a lot of work done today. We are very pleased with the look of the Certainteed Landmark Pro Max Def Resawn Shake shingle that we chose. I took pictures of the work throughout the day as I always try to do with major projects.
After the roofers left I worked for a while in the bus. I took the mattress into the house along with the electric heating pad controls. I disconnected the two gas struts that support the plywood bed platform so I could open it far enough to reinstall one of the drawers. I left them disconnected as I plan to remove the platform to provide better access to the sides of the box and floor. I also plan to reposition them when I reinstall the platform to provide better access to the storage area underneath. I then took measurements and made a sketch of the file drawer box for the desk.
I cooked the Amy’s Roasted Vegetable Pizza on the outdoor gas grill, both to avoid heating up the house and to see how it responded to that cooking method. I used the grilling mat and the result was quite acceptable. A glass of Franzia Moscato was a nice accompaniment.
After dinner I worked at the drafting board in my office turning my sketch and measurements into a scale drawing. The two boxes for the desk will be trickier than a standard desk box because of the HVAC chase and because I have to put an Aqua-Hot heat exchanger in the bottom of each one. I worked until about 9 PM and then came back upstairs.
The air-conditioner worked fine yesterday but was once again unable to bring the temperature in the house below 74 degrees F even though the outside air temperature never rose above 80. There is clearly something wrong and I am wondering if one of the cold air ducts is open into the attic and/or one of the return air ducts us drawing hot air from the attic. Either of these conditions would reduce the air flow to the house and overtax the evaporator in the air handling unit. The more likely cause, however, is lack of refrigerant. Whatever the case I shut the system off and opened up the house.
I was relaxing in the living room when Linda called at 9:30 PM to let me know she had left her babysitting gig and was stopping at the Whole Foods Market before heading home. The reception started at 5 PM and lasted until 9 PM. She was home by 10:15 PM and straight away to bed as she has to go into the bakery tomorrow and wants to leave early enough to be ahead of the morning rush hour traffic.