Albury for repairs.

Monday 31st March 2015, Albury.

We have been here for three days and I have had my shorts on for all of them, it is nice to get back into some warm weather again, but it is probably the same warmth all over anyway.

I have decided that the caravan needs some maintenance while here, so apart from a small amount of sightseeing this will be my priority. I noticed when we arrived here that a fuse for running the fridge had blown, so that was repaired on Sunday. I was surprised to see that the later manufactured automobile fuses have a built in LED that illuminates when the fuse is blown, and that is the only reason I noticed it. It is not surprising that the fuse did blow, though, as I only had a 15 Amp fuse installed and the fridge draws a little more than 15 Amps. The sail rails on the side of the van also need replacing as they are nearly hanging loose once again. I have repaired them a couple of times already, by replacing the rivets with larger ones and more of them, as gusts of wind have ripped them loose. This time when I removed the strips I found the reasons why they were never going to stay on there:

1. When the sail rails were installed initially the rivets were placed on, supposedly, the strongest ridges on the wall, being every third one that is actually a fold in the joint of sheets, where there is more than one thickness of sheeting. It turns out that these ridges are a couple of millimetres lower than all the others and the rail did not sit hard up against the ridges resulting in the rivets starting to pull themselves through the sheeting at installation. Resultant wind gusts had no problem pulling the rivets all the way through. My replacing the rivets with larger ones ended up doing the same thing all over.

2. The sail rail fitted was of the one sided fixture type, whereas if double sided had been fitted there would simply be twice as many securing points.

3. The rail fitted was placed the wrong way round so as when a gust of wind hit it the result was the wall canvas would pull the rail in such a direction to actually lever the rail off the wall. If the rail had been fitted the other way round, with the mounting side on the outside of the awning walls, the wind gusts would result in the wall pulling sideways on the rail, which would have been its strongest direction.

The sail rails have now been replaced with double sided fixings so no matter which way the wind blows it will be held by the strong point of the rail anyway. The rivets were placed in all ridges other that the supposed strong ones so as they now not only have more fixing points, there are twice as many being both sided.

We did also have a small tour around Lake Hume today because when we were down by the river yesterday it seemed there was a lot of water running so I assumed that the lake must have been a lot fuller than last we say it. When we arrived at the dam we were actually surprised to see that it was actually lower than it was in 1970 when we were last there. We decided to go for a drive around the lake and to Tallangatta as we had planned anyway, and saw some new areas, so it was all worth it.

Albury, First leg North.

Saturday 28th March 2015, Albury.

Once again I have had feelings of trepidation in moving again. I have not mentioned this before but after sitting for a while I develop these feelings that the caravan is not fully capable of transport due to its age, and now we have moved these feelings have disappeared.

Yes we have started on our way north again for this winter, and already we are warm again with the temperature in Albury being high enough for me to don my shorts. The difference here being that it gets warmer during the day, although it has been just as cold as Heathcote Junction during the evening, and one feels so much warmer once the day progresses. It is already starting to feel that we are going to enjoy our stay here, even if just because of the weather.

Heathcote Junction.

Sunday 15th March 2015, Heathcote junction.

We have now found out about Linda’s treatment for her ailment, and that won’t happen until July. A small procedure is to be done so Linda will fly back from wherever we are, probably Brisbane, and have it done, then stay for a couple of weeks to see her specialist and hope this fixes the problem.

There is now nothing in particular stopping us from moving north to the warmer weather, but we have decided to wait until the end of this month. This decision is sometimes regretted as the overnight temperatures have been rather low lately, as a matter of fact I weakened and got the heater out of the back of the car today. I think it is going to be needed a bit more from now on, unless now that I have it out things will warm up, typically. I would also like to use this couple of weeks to get another couple of days in at the museum to give them some more of my time before we leave, especially seeing I have an idea that there is going to be a job done that I have been waiting for.

Heathcote Junction.

Saturday 7th March 2015, Heathcote Junction.

We are now back in Heathcote Junction, but for how long this time is unknown. Linda has an appointment with her specialist on Wednesday and we will then find out what treatment she has to undergo, if any, and how long it may take, hence dictating how long we are going to be here before heading north again.

Hamilton.

Wednesday 4th March 2015, Hamilton.

How time flies when you are enjoying yourself: It has almost been a week since the last report and only feels like yesterday. The weather hasn’t improved any over the last week, but it has been fine enough for us to do most of the sightseeing we had intended. There is actually a fair bit to see and do around here and we probably won’t do much more sightseeing as we have declared that we both really like this place and will definitely be back one day, so we will catch up when that time comes. The area has had a fair bit of volcanic activity over the times so much of the sightseeing is based on that type activity, with waterfalls, caves, craters, lava tubes and such things so sightseeing has been filled with activities a little different than that of when we were out and about regularly. I am having a rest day today as the walk yesterday was up and down some steep hills and although I am not stiff and sore, I am still feeling it, old age and that sort of thing. The sights we saw yesterday were definitely well worth the trip, not far only 50K or so, but Linda was actually a little overwhelmed with it all. It looks, weather wise, that the next couple of days will be also rest days before we head back to Heathcote Junction ready for further doctor visits.

Ronald Tew, All over the countryside