We have been in Oregon for a good 6 weeks on family business – all of May. In a little known RV park that I wouldn’t care to stay in for more than a couple of days, just too crowded and I am not used to being in one place so long.
So once we were on the road again it sure felt good to see some space around us and get out in the sunshine.
The plan was to head to the Black Hills to see how Crazy Horse monument is coming along and do some fishing.
Cruising through Washington seemed uneventful. That is until we came to the Idaho state line.
The stretch of road about 10 miles back seemed to be uneven in spots.
There was good reason for the feeling though.
We pulled off and decided to spend the night in Cabela’s parking lot – I wanted to get some things anyway.
The parking lot is very welcoming to big rigs and has a dump available. There is also dog runs and horse corrals. I suspect for the hunters mostly.
Once we found a spot I got out to stretch my legs and do a once-around the rig with my temperature “gun” on the tires and hubs. If one tire is hotter than another then it could mean its losing air or under stress somehow. Same thing with the hubs.
Anyway, as I went around the drivers side back to the rear of the trailer I couldn’t believe my eyes…
The rear wheel was completely missing!
What the heck happened? I have no clue. I always check my mirrors and look at the tires every 5 minutes or so. I couldn’t see anything but the front wheel which looked fine from my point of view and always going around turns but this stretch of road was straight for a long time.
The uneven road as I thought was actually the trailer balancing on 3 wheels.
And why no one pulled along side of me and alert me to the vacant spot in the wheel well is another thing I don’t understand.
Where the wheel came off I don’t know and I pray no one got in its path.
I called my roadside assistance and they said it is an insurance issue. In the meantime a very kind man named John was parked in the lot too and noticed the anomaly and offered his assistance. He helped me get a scissor jack under the axle to support it
The next day John ferried me around to trailer and tire shops and then to an RV center who said they were 2 weeks out in their repairs. They suggested RnR RV Center may be better able to help. So I called them up and they said to bring it in so they could get a better assessment.
Before I knew, I drove down the highway at 60 miles an hour and not thinking about anything. AND NOW to drive KNOWING the thing is missing was very nerve racking. It was 5 miles to the shop but felt like 20.
They took a look as well as my insurance adjuster on the Dexter axle/brake assembly and seem to come to the conclusion the bearings failed. Sigh.
I kid you not… the next maintenance item on the list was brakes/bearings. Needless to say, the whole rear axle is going to be replaced and the remaining wheel assemblies thoroughly checked. Two new tires on the starboard side with the one coming off to replace the cheap one on the spare wheel.
So life just said to SLOW DOWN and Stay awhile here, because there may be weather or obstacles that we were to going to meet with down the road to South Dakota.
Got a chance to look over some other RVs too. Which ones will be on my wish list? Time will tell. For now, I am happy with our rig.
"Lets Make a Point To Leave This Place Better Than When We Came, One Life at a Time."