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.