Tracy and I left Norco at 11am on Wednesday December 30. We met Stephan & Sonia at the 210/15 junction and headed North on I15. We sat in a lot of traffic between Barstow and Baker. We arrived at Tecopa Hot Springs Campground at 5pm. We set up camp and sat by the campfire until 9pm. It got down to 28° overnight.
After we left Columbia Mine we headed for China Ranch Date Farm. http://www.chinaranch.com/ Fresh date bread was just coming out of the oven and we devoured a large loaf. Mmmm good!
We left the China Ranch Date Farm and headed back to camp to see if Mike had arrived yet. Mike had not arrived so we headed for Shoshone and visited "The Crowbar". Back to camp at 3pm and Mike had arrived. We spent an hour in the Hot Springs, had dinner and sat around the campfire until 9pm. Not a chance we were going to sit out in the below freezing temps to welcome in the New Year.
We turned around and headed back for camp. Back at camp at 5pm. We loaded the Jeep on the trailer for an early Sunday departure to beat the holiday going home traffic. We sat in the hot springs, had dinner and sat around the campfire until 9pm. Overnight lows were 26°
Sunday morning we were up and ready to go at 8am......
The truck would not start. Mike started the diagnostics. By 10am Mike had diagnosed the problem as a bad fuel pump . My only option seemed to be to offload the camper and have the truck towed in to Pahrump on Monday morning and hope the local parts store had a new fuel pump. We did not have cel service in Tecopa. Mike drove me out to Ibex Pass and we started making phone calls. Autozone in Pahrump had a fuel pump motor but not a whole assembly. None of the other parts stores had any fuel pump assemblys or fuel pump motors. Mike drove me into Pahrump (70 miles round trip from Tecopa) and we discussed options along the way. I had never replaced a fuel pump before but Mike had. Mike offered to help me out if Autozone did have the correct fuel pump motor. I bought the motor and we headed back to Tecopa to start the process of removing the fuel tank. I had filled up with fuel in Baker and the tank had approx 30 gallons of fuel. We tried a few different methods of draining/siphoning the fuel with no luck. We decided to drop the tank with the fuel in it. We got the tank dropped and dug a trench to get it out from under the truck. Both vent hoses broke while getting the tank out. Once the tank was out we removed the fuel pump and drained the fuel into cans. Mike rebuilt the fuel pump assembly with the new fuel pump motor. We re-installed the fuel pump into the tank. We drove back into Pahrump for new vent hoses. We re-installed the tank into the truck. We put 15 gallons of gas back into the tank and the truck started. We packed everything up and hit the road at 11pm. Home at 3am.
Mike saved me a large repair bill as well as a missed day of work on Monday. I cannot thank him enough for sticking with Tracy and I all day on Sunday to fix the truck. THANK YOU MIKE!!!!!!!!
Overall the weekend was very enjoyable. The mines were awesome. The nights were cold but the days were sunny. We had zero wind.
An unusual kind of report. Since they put fuel pumps in tank now-o-days, it's a chore to R&R. That tank with 30 gals of fuel would weigh about 250 lbs. That takes some big guns laying below the tank under the truck!
We had some fuel pump probs in our 90's XJ (the one I rolled off a cliff in Telluride)
Glad you got home in one piece, and under your own power.
regards, as always, jefe