7 October: Service at Onan-Cummins in Elkhart, IN and finally back in Wisconsin

Was a great night at the Cummins service camp ground.  Was up early and ready for the techs at 0730.  They got me in right away, but the service took much longer than expected.  This was my annual maintenance stop, so expected it to take a while, but didn’t get on the road until 2:15 Eastern.  Don’t get me wrong…this place was great.  They took their time to make sure everything was done right.  There was a very nice lounge with WiFi and DTV for the RV crowd, and very close to a very good restaurant.  Lunch was $2.99 for the best home-made potato soup I have had in years.  I guess anything topped with cheese and bacon and some ham thrown in is good.

So what does an annual fluid change, chassis lube, generator service and mechanical inspection on a Cummins powered Coach cost??  About $671.71.  They also checked out some items I was concerned about at no charge, and moved some items around mechanically that were bothering me.  The oil dip stick was a big concern of mine.  There were two places where it would stop, and it made a difference of about 4″ with regard to how much of the end of the 6′ long dipstick was in the pan.  They were able to determine the correct spot after the oil change and made a new mount for the back-end of the dipstick.  I will feel much more comfortable knowing that my readings are correct now, as they were somewhat suspect before.  The prior owner could not recall where the stop was supposed to be.  Good news is that everything checked out great, and the oil “leak” was just typical “weep” with these motors.  They validated the torque on all the pertinent bolts, so I am happy.

This service included:  New fuel filter and fuel water separator; oil filter; oil (62 pints); air filter ($99.00); coolant check and top off; chassis lube; brake adjustment and lube (clevis pins); tranny fluid top off; inspection of all belts and hoses; brake pad inspection (75% left); Generator service (oil, oil filter, air filter) and test.  They have four gigantic lifts that can get the coaches up in the air, which is highly unusual.  This place provides new generator adds for a lot of the manufacturers in the area.  I saw at least 3 new DRV Mobile Suites 5th wheels come in to have generators installed.

Everything was done and I was out the door and hooking up the truck at the optimum time…right when the rain started.  Hit the road and pointed west.  Was uneventful through Indiana other than a few rain showers.  Entering good ole IL was another story.  The ramp to get onto I80/I94 West is closed, so had to take I65 South for a bit to hit 94 West.  Not too bad.  294 sucked!  I think everyone got off work early today for some reason.  It was terrible.  Why does everyone travel the speed limit in the country, and as soon as you hit a major city on the freeway where it is 55 MPH, they decide they have to drive 80 MPH?  Especially the cars.  I got cut off more times than I can count, and it made it really a joyous occasion trying to get over for the 6 toll stops.  $26 in tolls, which included the IN toll way (I80 in IN) and 294 in IL.  But…I made it with no scars.  As mentioned on a previous post, I really miss my navigator!  Thank God she gets back tomorrow.

Made it to my fuel stop in WI about 4:30, which was only about 10 miles from the camp ground I have until Sunday.  What a cluster…my bank, once again…declined my card when I went to fuel up.  All this after the last incident when I told them I am on the road and will be making rather large fuel purchases.  I usually use Pilot or Flying J as I get a discount (except in Wisconsin for some reason) and their fuel lanes are easy to navigate.  They always put a $500 hold on the card until the actual fuel is dispensed, so it flagged on my card…again.  So, had to go inside while I had three semi’s behind me waiting to fuel…hey bank, you are not making any brownie points for the RV folks out there as far as the truckers are concerned!  Called them later and got everything worked out…I hope!  Had to pay cash, which was not in my plan today.

Enough griping!  I am recently really amazed how, once I am set up at a camp ground in the woods, all of the cares of the day fade away.  I think I found a real gem…this is the Racine County Park Campground located in the thriving metropolis of Caledonia, WI.  What a nice place!  No sewer hook up, but they have a dump station, 50 AMP service and water hookups.  The weather was perfect, but I had to scramble to get set up before dark.  I cannot wait to check this place out in the morning, as I am only a hop, skip and a jump from Lake Michigan.  Better yet, it is only $23 per night, which kind of puts me back on budget after the last couple of camp sites I stayed at.  Check out the pictures below.

Site number 10...go figure.  I had my pick of about 50 open sites.  It is self-registration here.

Site number 10…go figure. I had my pick of about 50 open sites. It is self-registration here.


Really crowded!


Tree right at the end of the street where I am parked. Awesome color.



I know you cannot see it real well, but the light at the bottom left through the leaves is the moon coming up as it gets dark. I messed with the exposure too much. It was phenomenal in person!!

Well, time to call it a night.  Terri gets in about 6 tomorrow night God willing.  I know she will love this place, and we are not too far from Ashley, Garreck, Emma, Eli and Toby.  We have this place until Sunday, when the Park closes for the season.  On Thurs or Friday I am going to run down to the Great Lakes Naval Training Center and check out their RV park.  They are open year round, and although not great reviews, one cannot be picky when there is nothing to pick from.  I’m confident it will be fine, and an even better price…$17 per night, one of the bennies of being retired military.



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