Drovers new Rig - "Big Mal"

Drover

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Nov 7, 2013
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Battery light came on and went flat in minutes can’t get anyone to look at it so I went and bought a new alternator as they have a habit of dying and it’s got a couple of hundred k on it, alas no difference so hopefully on Monday I can get it towed somewhere to sort it out. Can’t wait for the Everest to be available but I’ve got thousands of K’s to do with the Jeep and van before it arrives. Sorry @Drover for the hijack but you did ask lol
While alternator could be cause, the battery stands a good chance as well, AGMs can just close up shop without warning, hard to be diagnostic long distance so many things to check................... hope its an easy sort out Dave.
 
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BJM

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No unfortunately
I hope its an easy fix . At 200000 klmsbound to have a few things that might fail.Mind you had two XJs Cherokees both into the 300000 klms and not a problemcurrent tow vehicle is a 2010 WH GC 220000 klms ,just replaced injectors .Been a great vehicle ,BUT! always service my vehicles well before stated book serviving.And if you think you are having a bad run I know a guy in Townsville who bought a brand new Ford Raptor ,in the dealership 4 out of the five months he owned it ! One new auto gearboxe,plus turbo failures .Then Valve train problems. New motor put in ,then continually went into limp mode when towing a JOB 17.58.
 

BJM

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If who ever you take it to starts moaning about Jeeps get it out of there if possible.!If you can get a code let us know .
 
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Drover

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Back on topic, Big Mals recent maintenance and mods, my springs shims seem to be doing the job, the fridge clean and insulation upgrade certainly has doen wonders, full sun on the wall till midday and fridge seems to be recovering temp faster than before and staying around the 4 deg mark or lower, cool days though as only 27c...................... overall so far I'm quite pleased, so clean up of 11 years of dirt and rust with a repaint has worked, really ahve to wait till we get out in summer to see how good though..................... brakes worked well, wheels didn't fall off or burst into flame so a winner............ next possible job is to flip the tyres on the rims so whats now outer will be inner as the inner has worn a bit before I replaced springs so a flip will even things out a bit more and get a few more years out of them......... the new power feed for the STB's/TV etc seems to be working well with them all on and water pump running lights and things don't flicker at all now, possibly could have got the same result if I gave the pump a tune up, still might, ensure contact and things are in good nick if its possible that is with out things falling apart......
 

Drover

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"The Great Watertight Integrity Test of 2022" for Big Mal is now into its 50th day and 1.7metre's dumped over it so far this year with another 20mm in the gauge for today already, so far dry as a bone inside no sneaky drips, I'm so glad that the other year I went over all the rivets and any that looked dodgy got replaced and sealed, the usual roof cleans means a good inspection of sealant a few times a year as well, one bonus of the hail damage was it all got replaced so the age clock on the sealer got a restart............ On close inspection I think removal of my spare wheel at the back will allow my Yamaha 40HP to be mounted there, bit of gaffa tape around the vents and we should be good to go..... SS Big Mal............
 

Drover

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A break in the rain and wind so time to give Big Mals awning a clean up and plan a cover for it, a number of great ideas were tried and all failed the test, would still let water and crap in so mould would still happen but hidden, so decided to go the store bought cover, not allowed to use someones sewing machine anymore so shop job, so theres $128 .............................. go to adjust the awning arms and one of the damn handles breaks, drill out the rivet and find part of the cam has snapped, cast alloy rubbish so not even going to try a fix, Road Tech Marine has them for $44.95 + $8 freight, cheaper than doing the 240km round trip by a long shot, postie is going to stop by this week I hope......................... so there's the pension rise spent for the next year (86cents)


Latch with broken bit alongside...................... IMG_20220717_110404_HDR.jpg ......................
 

Drover

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The new awning cover has arrived along with the new latch, Ive trimmed and drilled the sail trak all ready to rivet onto Big Mal but we have just passed 60mm of rain so far so might be awhile till I can go out and play without scuba gear......... 3 days of rain and wind, Ive had a gutful of TV and WiKi Camps, too cold in shed to play ................................ suppose the other latch will break next.
 

Drover

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This morning clouds parted and I hoped the wind had dropped to below the "Blow Silly Old Fart Off Ladder" velocity, thankfully it had (just) and I managed to fit out the sail trak on Big Mal and run the awning cover out without injury............ masked it up so I didn't get silicon all over the place but I did anyway so WD40 did a good job cleaning up after me, my home made drill depth gauge failed and I lobbed one hole straight thru both walls, bum. A neat camo job will be required now, anyway wind didn't blow me off the ladder and I didn't step off my trestle so on a roll and new latch fitted, so hopefully this cover will give this awning a few more years compared to the last one, should certainly mean I won't have to scrub it down as much...... Dust, Pollen and a regular heavy morning dew here means lots of mould........................ Awning cover was from https://jillaroo.com.au/product/jillaroo-awning-vinyl-cover-protector/ $110 + $18 freight, heat welded vinyl with a couple of straps, time will tell.......... also had to get some sail trak for it to mount on van, thats not supplied but easy enough from Bunnings/Mitre 10.


IMG_20220723_142023_HDR.jpg
 
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Drover

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Gave the diesel heater its every other month run, actually looked at the solar reg panel, before I flicked the switch everything was charged up and showing bugga all amps or watts, once it started to fire up the amps upped to 9 and watts went to 150 odd from solar and covered the load with battery just sitting pretty at 100% then once the heater was running properly it all dropped back to just covering the load and that was at 1400 and sun wasn't in a great spot at all..
 

jazzeddie1234

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Gave the diesel heater its every other month run
I fired mine up to clouds of smoke, a shut down and a successful start on the second attempt. Tried running it flat out but after several days decided a clean was required. Watched all the videos on disassembly and cleaning until I stumbled on a guy 'don't bother with all that - just squirt lots of brake cleaner into the fuel pipe at the heater inlet'... Well being lazy I decided to give that a go first. Disconnected the fuel line, squirted plenty of cleaner in there and into the exhaust port, waited a while for spills to evaporate, big huff and puff to blow it through a bit, hooked it all back up, and fired it up. BIG roar when the glow plug heated up o_O and then a perfect start! Starts first time now :bounce:
 

Drover

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Nov 7, 2013
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I fired mine up to clouds of smoke, a shut down and a successful start on the second attempt. Tried running it flat out but after several days decided a clean was required. Watched all the videos on disassembly and cleaning until I stumbled on a guy 'don't bother with all that - just squirt lots of brake cleaner into the fuel pipe at the heater inlet'... Well being lazy I decided to give that a go first. Disconnected the fuel line, squirted plenty of cleaner in there and into the exhaust port, waited a while for spills to evaporate, big huff and puff to blow it through a bit, hooked it all back up, and fired it up. BIG roar when the glow plug heated up o_O and then a perfect start! Starts first time now :bounce:

Its all in the timing, like squirting a bit of AVGAS down the carbie to clean things out, wrong timing and KaBloomy, flames everywhere..........
Handy hint, I just give mine a run, full noise for 30 mins every second month though during all that rain it was every month.....

Might experiment with firing up the fridge on van batteries today, about 1100 so solar has most push and see what happens...... would never be a solution as it needs 23amps to run so will need every bit of juice from the panels, be a good test to just see how the panel go.... 420 on roof..... just have to run an extension lead from battery outlet anderson to the anderson at back of fridge............
PS: Well the clouds have rolled in again so that experiment will be put off for another day.
 
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Drover

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Its been a month since I fitted the awning cover, had some good rain, heavy dews, big pollen dumps and Melbourne weather too boot, opened up awning yesterday, nice and sunny, no mouldy bits, no moisture and just as clean as when I last did it before fitting cover, suitably impressed, it would have been so yucky by now otherwise.........................

On another sunny day I fired up the fridge on the van batteries, most interesting experiment, the solar was just purring along at .4 amps then when I flicked the fridge On, it upped the watts and amps to be just above what the battery was supplying to fridge, supply voltage in van ran at about 12.6v for the 2 hours I did it however when I flicked the panels off the battery's dropped away very fast, only let them go for about 15 mins, the fridge was sucking away enough so I reckon they would be knackered in a couple fo hours easy, van supply dropped to 12.2v, once fridge off (van supply back to 12.6)and panels brought back online they recovered fast but only about 15amps from panels..... I reckon during the day I would have a couple of hours to get to town for more gas if i ran out while camped beside a creek somewhere, well between 0900 and 1500 anyway with my portable panel out.................... the lead for the fridge supply was 5Mt of 8 B&S, no loss and seperate from vans circuit.