Lens Travels - Living our Dreams! travel blog


I'm not often surprised anymore but yesterday I was surprised in a most pleasant way.

The people at Action Auto & Truck Service spent a whole lot of time yesterday installing the new oil pressure sensor in the Dutch Star. This turned out to be a much more involved problem than they at first thought. They had to remove the starter to get to it, and then they found out that the replacement part overnited by Cummins was the wrong part. Rodney, the owner of the business, scrambled around and found the right part in Albuquerque. His son, Clayton works there and after work he went to Cummins, picked up the part and drove it to us here in Gallup. That's a 160 mile trip. That's going way beyond the call of duty, and everyone here went way out of their way to try to get us back on the road in a timely manner.

I'm guessing that they spent 3 or 4 hours working on the rig. Finally they had the new sensor installed and we were supposed to be able to crank it up and it would start. Well it didn't start, and they didn't have the computer tools necessary to diagnose it further. Back to the drawing board.

By then it was time for Rodney to close up shop for the day and the weekend. He came by the rig and when I asked him about settling up with him on money he told me that I didn't owe him anything because he hadn't fixed my problem. He would not accept anything from me including the cost of the new part. He said that he had pretty much promised me that he could fix it but wasn't able to do that, and that he didn't want to accept money when he hadn't done what he said he would do. I was absolutely stunned, and insisted that he take something for his efforts, but he refused. In addition to that he offered us the use of his electricity while we were parked here. What a great guy!!!

If ever any of you out there are in need of service in the Gallup, NM area I would positively recommend Action Auto & Truck Service located at 3707 Rt 66 in Gallup. Phone 505-863-7894 or 24 hrs service: 505-863-9040.

After numerous phone calls to Coach Net my towing service and Cummins in Avondale, AZ and Farmington, NM it was determined that the best solution for me was to have the rig towed about 2 miles to J & J Truck Service here in Gallup who has the diagnostic tools to find and fix the problem and get us on our way. Coach Net has secured a towing company to tow us and they should be here in about 1/2 hour or so. Hopefully this time we'll find a solution and not more and bigger problems.

When bad things happen they seem to happen in bunches. Earlier this morning Nancy and I got into the Ranger to go check out J & J Truck Service and found that we couldn't get the Ranger in gear. The clutch was very weak. This was very much like what happened in the Gunnison, CO area about 2 years ago and the solution to that was a new slave cylinder for the clutch that involved removing the transmission. That little disaster ended up costing me $1200.

I called the emergency number for Action Auto & Trucking and one of their mechanics, Harvey came by and found that I would have to replace that same slave cylinder on the clutch. He was going to take the weekend off, but volunteered to do the job on the spot and is working on it right now. The good part about all of this is that if it was going to break down this would be the perfect place for that to happen, not out in the middle of no where, or off road somewhere. Nancy drove it into town yesterday and I'm so grateful that it didn't happen while she was driving it. She said that it seemed to be shifting hard, but she got back here without any problems thankfully.

Hopefully both vehicles will be fixed and we'll be on our way tomorrow. We'll keep you posted on this soap opera as it develops.

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