By Jim Hinckley
After several months of short runs, ironing out bugs discovered on those jaunts, and then trying again I felt the time had come for a maiden voyage. So this morning I turned the grill towards the rising sun and drove to church in Peach Springs, a trip of just over forty five miles each way.
The day was somewhat cool for August in western Arizona, just over 100 degrees. The traffic was almost nonexistent so I had old Route 66 pretty much to myself.
The temperature gauge stayed between half and three quarters, a clear indication that removal of the damaged air conditioning condenser had resolved a great deal of the initial overheating issues. As it was not operable I had no qualms and have seen removed all air conditioning components and boxed them for another day.
I held the speed at about sixty for most of the trip but on the flats just west of Hackberry ran it up to eighty for five miles or so to check for thumps and bumps as well as for a little fun. It would seem there is a balance issue with the new tires that was quite noticeable between sixty five and seventy. Otherwise all seemed smooth as silk.
I replaced the heater hoses several months ago and encountered an odd problem, about forty pin holes in each new hose! The holes were so small they seeped rather than leaked.
An odd problem demands and odd remedy. So this morning before the trip I applied superglue to each hole. Upon return I popped the hood and was quite pleased to see this issue was resolved.
On the way home I stopped at the old Hackberry General Store to check for leaks and such. With the exception of slight seeping at the valve cover, oil pan and transmission pan everything was well so the trip was finished with a smile.
There is one odd quirk that has not been resolved. If I stop when the truck is hot, let it sit for a bit and then restart the truck (with the gas gauge at three quarters or above), it will stall when put in gear. It restarts quickly by holding the pedal to the floor and cranking it a few times. Once on the road the temperature quickly drops to its proper operating range, between half and three quarters on the gauge.
As always the drive was a pleasant one with lots of time for thought and meditation. Moreover, visiting with my dear friend, the pastor of the church there, Harlan Dennis, is always a refreshing start for a new week.
Overall there was but one disappointment with the Adventurer. The fuel economy is atrocious. A trip of 105 miles, hard headwinds on the way home and one half tank of fuel. I will refill in the morning and get a hard number but my guess is something between 12 and 15 miles per gallon.