Croc's Blog

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Ellen and I have a dedicated run from Salem, Illinois to Laredo, Texas. We run the route three times on one week and twice on the next. The result is that we find ourselves at home every weekend arriving either on Friday or Saturday.

We take a day and a half off each weekend. For both of us the time off is reduced to one day once you figure in those jobs that have to be done before we get a little time to ourselves. For Ellen that means laundry and some kitchen work, plus the normal dusting that goes with a home. For me it's the grass - I hesitate to call it a lawn at this point - which needs cutting every weekend. Driving the mower around the yard is a time for me to be alone, on my own and not even thinking about anything, except perhaps the fact that I am mowing more weeds than grass. As anyone with a lawn will tell you, in the Spring it has to be weeded and fed - so now I am trying to kill the weeds and feed the grass, I think however that the weeds are grabbing food from the grass's plate because they seem to be doing very well. There is some very healthy looking grass growing among the weeds now so maybe, just maybe we will have an actual lawn in a year or two.

Road Notes
On the road we tend to do the driving and the only time we sit is once we are in Salem. We are usually there at around 1am and don't pick up until just after 4am. We drive a Freightliner Cascadia with an auto-shifter which makes driving easy. Our runs are tight so a breakdown can be a big problem, usually meaning that we have to skip one turn and wait for someone to bring us the next one, that is if the repair has been made.

A few weeks ago we had a tire failure and it took Loves six hours to take care of us; that is a story unto itself but we will leave it for another time. During this past week we had a problem with a hub seal which wasn't doing a great job of sealing anything. The rear right wheel was covered in oil. We had the thing fixed once in Joplin where a new seal was installed and the nuts tightened down. We were pretty ticked when we arrived in Laredo and saw that the leak hadn't been fixed properly and now had to deal with it while running a tight load. The trouble was quickly identified by a TA Technician although actually getting to the front of the repair line where the Tech' could work his magic took a while. The problem wasn't the seal or the nuts although they replaced the seal anyway. The bolts that extend from around the axle housing (I think there are 8 of them) were loose. The Tech' took time to tighten the bolts before torquing the nuts. We haven't lost a drop of oil since.

So, if you are having trouble in the same area make sure the bolts are tight before tightening the nuts. Joplin Mechanics take note.

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This is an area I like to use for the occasional update of what Ellen and I are up to.

We run a dedicated lane between Laredo, Texas and Salem, Illinois with a break at the weekend at home in Joplin but hopefully it is still interesting even though we limit our travels.

Croc's Blog is a semi daily thing. Croc's Thoughts are designed to get him into trouble with someone, somewhere. Here's a list of some of the thoughts I have had.

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