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Old 07-10-2009, 09:46 PM   #1
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Leaving Alaska - Barely

I got about 15 miles out of Alaska before I nearly ran out of oil - a big leak from the oil filter housing. 8:30. Sit on the side of the road for a couple of hours. Tow truck won't come without a credit card. Hitch a ride 50 miles into town with a highway worker (thank you Gordon) and go to the shop. 3:00. Talk to them and they can send out a truck in a couple of hours. 5:00. The truck leaves and drops me off downtown so I can eat. Eat, read the paper, watch TV, try not to worry about my van. 7:00. Go outside and pace up and down until the tow truck appears with my van in tow. $357 tow bill (thank you AAA). We head out to the shop and he puts me on the side where it is level enough and I move back into my now immobile home. 8:30.



Worry and wonder WTF. Go to bed and sleep won't come. 11:30.

Get up. Dress. Have breakfast. Drink coffee. Drink coffee. Shop opens. 8:00.

They are short handed. Borrow a drain pan. Drain the filter housing. Remove filter housing. Clean up parts. No obvious cause. I mean the housing is marked where it was hit (rock on driveshaft and a big bump?) but it doesn't appear to affect the o-ring seal, or have a hole in the housing. Drain the last 4 quarts out of the engine (yes, 10 quarts are somewhere on the road). Clean everything up and reassemble. New filter won't work. Different brand and it won't release the lock at the bottom of the spring loaded part inside the filter. Reuse old filter. 15 quarts of fresh oil. Takes a long time to crank and pressurize the oil system. Must have had plenty of air in it. Finally starts and sounds normal (thank you, lord). 10:00

Pay my bill. Clean up me and take a test ride. Stop a mile down the road and check. Return to the shop. 10:30

Take it apart again. Try the new o-ring from the new, non fitting filter. Find another piece in with the filter. Read then instructions. Install the added piece. Get my new filter from the dumpster (fortunately I put it back in the box). Just in case, JB Weld all over where the housing might leak. Reassemble. Test ride up the Dome Road. 225 water temp for 10+ minutes going up. No leaks. Go back to the shop, settle up. Drive away. 12:00

Stop 10 miles down the road and check - OK.

Stop 20 miles down the road and check - OK.

Stop 30 miles down the road and check - OK.

Stop 50 miles down the road and check - OK.

Stop 100 miles down the road and check - OK.

Stop 200 miles down the road and check - OK.

Stop checking.

Arrive Whitehorse (320 miles). Check - OK. 7:30

Tomorrow I will check the local Ford man has a filter housing (not likely) and if available, I will swap it out.

Mike
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Old 07-10-2009, 10:31 PM   #2
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Re: Leaving Alaska - Barely

AHH yes adventure............


you know you would not have had any of these problems if you stayed home on the couch and watched leave it to beaver reruns.......

Good that you are back on the road.



DAVEF
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Old 07-11-2009, 01:18 AM   #3
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Re: Leaving Alaska - Barely

yeah Mike,
sorry to hear about your problem. Glad that you are on the move now.

Take care and have safe travels.

steve
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Old 07-11-2009, 09:04 AM   #4
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Re: Leaving Alaska - Barely

I can completely understand all those stops to check, recheck and recheck again the oil system. I can't imagine how concerned and paranoid I'd be that I'd lose oil again.

Glad to hear that your rig is back up and running correctly. Were there indications of exactly where the oil left the system (filter housing to engine block interface, or filter to filter housing interface)? Are you running the Ford filter system or the Amsoil system?


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Old 07-11-2009, 02:54 PM   #5
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Re: Leaving Alaska - Barely

Wow Mike that kind of sucks but you sure must have felt relieved to get back on the road. Hope you find the cause. Like Herb said, feeling gun shy seems to haunt me after an incident.

I seem to remember SMB saying the filter set up on the stock 6.0 housing was subject to damage (by something) and one of the reasons they suggested to use an external filter block. But even the AMSOIL setup looks like it can get nailed.

Have a safe trip and keep everyone posted.
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Old 07-11-2009, 06:20 PM   #6
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Re: Leaving Alaska - Barely

Thanks guys. Actually, I feel lucky. Had it happened on the Dalton Highway or at the end of the McCarthy or Nabesna roads I would still be sitting. Not to mention my wife was with me then (she flew home two days before lightning struck) and I would have to listen to that until rescue came.

No services in some of those places. All in all I only lost a day and less than $200. I can live with that.

Mike
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Old 07-12-2009, 05:24 PM   #7
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Re: Leaving Alaska - Barely

Mike, you did escape without too much of an ordeal! I've been up on some of those roads and it is as remote as it can get.

I might drive to Alaska via Dawson next summer and am considering towing an extra Sportsmobile just for spare parts.
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Old 07-12-2009, 07:25 PM   #8
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Re: Leaving Alaska - Barely

Wow Want an adventure, im leaving August 23 from Jackson Hole to Seward for 5 weeks (in my 1981 2wd) You just reminded me to get my AAA renewed for sure. I also might need to know where thatr airport was you sent your wife home from just in case mine gets unruly. Safe travels.
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Old 07-12-2009, 08:30 PM   #9
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Re: Leaving Alaska - Barely

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1981bettyford
Wow Want an adventure, im leaving August 23 from Jackson Hole to Seward for 5 weeks (in my 1981 2wd) You just reminded me to get my AAA renewed for sure. I also might need to know where thatr airport was you sent your wife home from just in case mine gets unruly. Safe travels.
Ron
Anchorage. All though, in a pinch you can get bush pilot transportation from almost anywhere in Alaska.

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Old 07-12-2009, 08:57 PM   #10
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Re: Leaving Alaska - Barely

Sweet Thanks,
How are the roads? Everybody friendly?
Ron
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