Cat on the CAT

The friendliest place on the web for anyone with an RV or an interest in RVing!
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.

judway

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Posts
1,175
Location
West Melbourne, FL
Last week, while we were dry camping at Shanty Pond in the Ocala National Forest a big homeless tomcat was friendly with us every evening. He decided to sleep on our motorhome engine (a CAT) to keep out of the cold. When I started the engine Wednesday to leave, there was a big loud bang. When the engine started the noise woke him up, he decided to get out of there fast and dived headfirst into the rotating fan. There was lots of blood and a cat burial. I thought that I had lost a belt and called Gary for information. He gave me the phone numbers for both Freightliner and Cat. I stopped at the Freightliner place in Ocala to get the fan and belts checked. The belts were OK, but one blade was cracked and a small piece out of another, but no vibration and basically OK. Freightliner did not charge me anything for the inspection.

So, Tom if you decide to dry camp in the forest the cat won?t bother you. You might however have a problem with the ?Rainbows?. No they aren?t a part of Jesse Jackson?s bunch. There were about 200 of them camping in an area south of us and raided our area for anything they could carry off. They had our friends the camp hosts all upset. They had the rangers and the sheriff out the night before we got there to solve some problems. Except for the drums going late into the night, it was pretty peaceful during our stay.
 

Ron

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Jan 29, 2005
Posts
18,082
Location
Home is where we park it
I am surprised that Freightliner didn't replace the fan since a cracked blade and a small piece missing from another has the potential of the damage progressing to the point of the blade or part of the blade separating and causing other damage.  I don't mean to cause you alarm but if it were me I would get it reinspected ASAP.  You might want to call Cat and Freightliner customer support and describe the damage and ask for their recommendation.  After giving it some thought if it were me I would have the damaged blade replaced reguardless.
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,937
judway said:
You might however have a problem with the ?Rainbows?. No they aren?t a part of Jesse Jackson?s bunch. There were about 200 of them camping in an area south of us and raided our area for anything they could carry off.

What are "Rainbows" Wayne? I can only think of rainbow trout  ???

TIA
 

judway

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Posts
1,175
Location
West Melbourne, FL
Tom

As it was explained to me the Rainbows are a group of people which are either descendents of the Hippie movement or are a similar group who gather in the name of the environment. They consider themselves a family. They meet in February in the Ocala National Forest for a family gathering at a place ok'ed by the forest service. They meet other places out west at other times of the year. The group that are there now are early arrivers and were camping south of where we were. A number who did not want to camp with the core group were camping in the same CG as we were. The group is controlled by "elders". As long as the elders are in control things are not too bad, but there were a bunch who can not be controlled by the elders and are just a bunch of outlaws and thugs There were a bunch of regular senior citizem campers who camped all winter in Shanty Pond. The rainbows essentially ran all of them off because of the potential danger.  The elders that came around the CG hosts, said they were resigning from the position which left no protection. The sheriff indicated that he wasn't interested unless a bad problem occured and about the same from the Rangers. The Escapees boondockers are having a rally at Shanty Pond in late February and expect all of the rainbows will be gone after their "family gathering". I understand there is a lot about them on the internet. You might google rainbows. I don't know of any rainbow trout in the Ocala Forest <G>.
 

judway

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Posts
1,175
Location
West Melbourne, FL
Ron

As soon as I get back to the house tomorrow I plan to open up the hatches and inspect the condition of the fan. I will then decide if I think it needs replacement, if I can do it my self or will have to take it someplace. The technicians did not seem to indicate there was an immediate problem since there was no visible vibration.
 

Ron

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Jan 29, 2005
Posts
18,082
Location
Home is where we park it
My concern would be propagation of the crack and possible new cracks propgating from the area where the chunk is missing.  Even though there is no apparent vibration now the fan is exposed to some vibration and loads when normally operating.  It is these loads that have no effect on a healthy fan blade but when there is a crack or even just a small ding or notch these normal loads can become a real problem.  Last thing we would want is for a crack to grow till it causes a larger piece of the fan to come loose.

I had our fan replaced because it had some small nicks in it.  When the fan was removed closer examination revealed several cracks radiating out from the nicks in the edge of the blades.  In the case of the fan we removed IMHO it wasn't IF it would fail but WHEN.
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,937
Thanks for the explanation Wayne. I wonder if Gary & Nancy are members, since they live in the Ocala NF  ???
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
74,620
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
The name comes from the "Rainbow Coalition", of which these folks are a (probably distant) derivative or offshoot. Basically a latter-day Hippie commune that has wintered in the Ocala National Forest for the past several years. Some are just peaceful folks communing with nature, some are a nuisance panhandlers and a few are outright troublemakers. The last supposedly are hangers-on rather than members of the group.

There are no local members that I am aware of - most everybody who lives around here devoutly wishes they would find some other venue for their winter sojourn.
 

judway

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Posts
1,175
Location
West Melbourne, FL
>>I had our fan replaced because it had some small nicks in it.  When the fan was removed closer examination revealed several cracks radiating out from the nicks in the edge of the blades.  In the case of the fan we removed IMHO it wasn't IF it would fail but WHEN.<<

Ron

Do you recall the cost of replacing the fan? Thanks.
 

judway

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Posts
1,175
Location
West Melbourne, FL
All

I heard that the owner of the tomcat came by looking for him a few days after we left. He was sad but understood what happened. He had been camping with the rainbows.
 

judway

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Posts
1,175
Location
West Melbourne, FL
Today, I had the CAT engine cooling fan as well as the serpentine belt and the waterpump belt replaced by a local Truck Repair Place.  :mad:

Cost:

Fan $105.94
Serpentine Belt $80.87
Waterpump belt $11.27
Labor $182.33
Tax $24.80

Total $405.21

This is the cost of having a big Tomcat sleep on your engine and dive headfirst into the rotating fan while trying to escape. The prices seem pretty good. ;D

Pictures of the fan old and new are shown.

Sorry I did not get a picture of the cat. He was a biggin. :-[
 

Attachments

  • FAN old1 (Medium).jpg
    FAN old1 (Medium).jpg
    149.7 KB · Views: 27
  • FAN old2 (Medium).jpg
    FAN old2 (Medium).jpg
    134.4 KB · Views: 22
  • FAN new (Medium).jpg
    FAN new (Medium).jpg
    55.7 KB · Views: 24

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,937
Wayne,

Thanks for the photos. A bit of an 'ouch!' on the repair/replacement costs. By way of consolation - each of the two props on our old tub cost $1,700, excluding labor or haul-out charges. Chris wonders why I get loud if she hits something in the water  ;D
 

judway

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Posts
1,175
Location
West Melbourne, FL
>>Hope it wasn't a black cat. <<

No, he was grey. He was a good looking cat, very friendly and not mean. I hated to be the one who dispatched him.
 

judway

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Posts
1,175
Location
West Melbourne, FL
Gary

The name of the company is:

Stiely's Truck & Equipment Repair, 2590 Kirby Circle NE, in Palm Bay, FL.

He is interested in doing regular service for motorhomes, such as oil changes, grease jobs and the things that go along with that. He indicated that the regular service for a diesel was about $200 for labor and all materials.

For that price it is not worth getting my hands dirty. I will probably have him do it next time.

My friend George had his radiator replaced by Steily. He was very pleased with their service, but very unhappy when the extended warranty refused to pick up the $3000 or so price for the new radiator. The fine print said basically they would not pay for anything.

Stiely's labor price is $65 per hour.
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,937
Wayne,

Sounds like Stiely's has great prices. Wish I could get mine done for that price, but I continue to do it myself.
 

Latest posts

Forum statistics

Threads
120,621
Posts
1,211,990
Members
125,715
Latest member
Skinr1
Top Bottom