Originally Posted by patrick51
Jack, How do you know about a fuel cutoff switch behind the pass. kick panel. I would like to find this. Have you actually seen this? Pat 07 e-350.
A long but great story to get to the answer:
For many years, Alan Feld of Sportsmobile put on annual rallies for 4WD SMB owners to teach them how to get more out of their vehicles. These rallies evolved into having trail rides (places like Silverton, CO) one year and learning new skills the following year. The former were a lot of fun and we learned A LOT at the latter ones.
Alan arranged for the group of 100 SMB owners to camp at a private horse ranch in Park City, UT in 2007. They dug a deep trench on the property and SMB brought a bunch of their own 4WD SMBs to let drivers drive down the "creek" with one side of the vehicle down in the trench and the other on the bank. Each driver thought for sure that they would tip over (at least they weren't our own vans!) but we were a long way from tipping, even at a 30 degree angle. Good experience when you are off chamber on a trail.
For another event, they set two pairs of logs on the ground to replicate a log bridge. The two pairs were spaced apart a distance equal to the wheel spacing on the van. Two-person teams (typically husband and wife) had to have one person successful drive the length of the "bridge" while the other person spotted the driver...without ANY verbal commands. And you were competing on the basis of time.
(Did I tell you the 100 or so van owners were divided into 5-van teams for these challenges and each owner on the winning team won 5 new BF Goodrich tires?)
Those who have seen my wife spot a van over a pile of rocks without saying a word will understand why we nailed this test. Others had a hell of a time, with the driver not trusting the spotter. I remember that I just stared at her hand signals which we had developed over time and did exactly want she told me to do, regardless if I thought it was going to make the van slip off the bridge...it didn't.
Another competition involved a complex contraption built by the guys at SMB West. It featured a seat bolted to the front bumper with an arm hanging over the seat to which a water balloon was tied. The ring around the balloon featured a bunch of nails, angled toward the balloon. After the victim was belted into the seat (usually the husband), the wife had to drive a narrow course outlined with cones slow and steady enough to not get the balloon swinging...too much. Here I am in the victim's seat with my wife driving.
As I recall, the driver had to drive maybe 20' and then make a 6-point turn and go back without going beyond the cones...the teams with the fastest times got the most points. Someone claimed that she backed pass the cones but I never got wet.
Here is the last victim, Alan Feld of SMB West:
His wife Liz is driving...but not very far before Alan got it, maybe intentionally!
Now to answer your question:
Another set of tests involved all of the members of your team. You gather around a van and were told some details. And then the stopwatch was started and you had to start or drive the van. The team with the shortest times got the most points toward those new tires. There were 3 of these challenges. For example, you were told that after going over some pretty big bumps, your engine died. With that limited amount of information and a suggestion to use the Owner's Manual, you were told to go start the van. One of us (probably my wife) jumped in and tried to start the van. It cranked fine but no gas was getting to the fuel injectors. Someone opened the hood and we were all baffled until someone grabbed the Owner's Manual. Someone finally read about the fuel cutoff switch and someone else reached in behind the kick panel and pushed down the reset button. The van started.
To share another important lesson we learned, here is another one of those tests:
After coming down a 4WD road to your campsite, you are maneuvering into a level spot and just slightly back into a small tree behind you but no damage. Now it is the next morning...go start the van and drive 5' forward. One of the team jumps in and the van starts immediately. They put their foot on the brakes but they can't shift the van from Park into Drive.
Anyone know what might be wrong and have a solution?