The Adventures of Airstream Mikie

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Glitches Glaore, but still something nice to say!

The backup video camera was installed off center, and too low, so trying to use it for hitching up is just too weird. It's going to have to be centered, and looking down from the roof of the tow vehicle, but it seems that the spare tire is in the way for that, so maybe the spare needs to go in the back of the tow-yota.

I towed the Airstream back to the dealer today to take care of some warranty work:

1. The monitor panel in the Airstream which shows the status of the fresh water, gray water, and black water tanks is malfunctioning. In order to get this checked I first had to dump the sewage in the tanks, and since this was my first adventure with that chore, I learned that I was not prepared with all the necessary Haz-Mat gear. I'm still learning! The trouble with the monitor is that the sending unit in the blackwater tank is giving FUBAR readings. New unit ordered and is due in 8 days! WTF? I'm learning patience....

2. Screw missing from the sewage hose storage tube. I mentioned this to them but they didn't fix it! WTF?

3. When I took delivery of the Airstream a couple of weeks ago, they forgot to give me the wheel for the tongue post. I figured I would get it installed today when they were doing other work, but it seems that the wheel can not be installed with the electric jack installed. WTF?

4. So far, 3 out of 3 and nothing is fixed. But without me mentioning it, they noticed that they had installed the tow hitch so that the front of the Airstream rides too high, and therefore the back is too low, and that means that the already-way-too-low sewage outlet valve rides even lower, so much so that it could easily hit a speed bump, and that could break the valve off and that would leave a major mess for me to clean up. So they installed a new hitch, and other adjustments to make it ride a bit better, but the valve design is just Wrong - way too low. WTF?

On the positive side, I was in the office while the service department was working on the Airstream, and I noticed a very neat 1/18 Motor City Classics scale model of a vintage Airstream, and was doing the "Wow! How cool is that" routine, and right out of the blue Jerry Handley, the salesman who helped me buy my Airstream, just up and gives it to me! Sweet! So now it's sitting on my mantle at Mikie's Fun House! What is interesting about the model is that nowhere on the box or the model does it say "Airstream" even though it is clearly, unmistakably an Airstream. Must have been a copyright battle on that issue!

Jerry Handley is a class act. He has been working there at Southwest Coaches for about 10 years and has sold Airstreams to some Hollywood headliners including
  1. Matthew McConaughey - check this story about him and his Airstream in Architectural Digest, of all places!
  2. Tom Hanks
  3. Julia Roberts
  4. Mike McCafferty (oops... shouldn't have mentioned that, he likes privacy!)
  5. etc, etc.

More on Jerry Handley in a later post, just wanted to say Thanks for the neat model, Jerry!

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