Out of the mystery and ambivalence of a month ago, things are moving along in many ways.
Red has been sold. It was painted, various things repaired and gone to a good new home. We lost money on the sale, but in the scheme of things it is no big deal, and a lesson learnt about wise purchasing decisions.
Green scored a 1HZ engine out of a 100 series that had been rescued from the Canning Stock Route. Brian needed the chassis for one of his other projects, the body was lifted off with a forklift to reveal a very red and dirty set of mechanicals.
The back story of the engine was that it used to run fine, then starting stopping each few hundred metres. Brian and I got it going in the chassis with the help of a hammer and chisel to remove what was the likely culprit – an electronic immobiliser on the injection pump. Our local diesel injection shop has checked over the injection pump itself and found it quite serviceable, and as the engine turns over and runs without nasty clunking or smoke, we have every belief it will lead a long and happy life in the belly of Green.
It’s been souped up with a GTurbo, kindly sponsored by GTurbo – Engineered Diesel Performance and we are days away from turning the key. Brian troubleshooted then tracked down and purchased all the components needed to install a diesel engine from a newer model into a body that used to house a petrol motor. New sump, new bell housing, revised clutch to match up with the larger petrol clutch and handle the extra power from the turbo. All a great jigsaw puzzle – Thanks Brian!!!
Once it is going, we need to get it ready for licensing, get it licensed and apply for the Carnet De Passage, before it has to be on the wharf at Fremantle for departure by the end of June, around 5 weeks away…. yes tight.
Oh, and we need to make sure it is well set up for overland travelling, camping etc. New tyres have been bought, exhaust work needs to be done to join it up to the turbo and plenty of other things need to be done – many fiddly things.
The trip. No changes have been made to the itinerary. The organisers have been forthcoming with useful clarifications that have answered some of our concerns and helped us focus on the planning we can actually do something about.
Kerry, Brian and Virginia have booked their flights to DaLian a ‘sub provincial’ city of over 6 million people. Kerry is travelling separately due to her own work commitments. Brian and Virginia are spending a day in Hong Kong on the way, Kerry is flying straight through with one stop over – around 14 hours all up and on the same time zone. Exciting to have the bookings made.
Tim and Jacob need to be in Kuala Lumpur around ten days prior to the convoy departing, much earlier than we initially anticipated. This pushes the pressure on for getting Green finished, licensed and the Carnet issued in time for us to leave.
It also puts more pressure on us needing to have our three visas returned from Mongolian and Russian embassy in Canberra, and the Chinese embassy agency in Perth. We’ll need our passports to fly, even if the visas come later.
Oh, the vaccinations. 🙁
Trip organisers suggested we all have a series of vaccinations. Mine resulted in 6 injections, three in one arm, three in the other. The ever helpful medical centre receptionist suggested I do not drink water for a while – it might all leak out…. ho ho ho. Very funny….. not at the time! I was very pleased with myself for not passing out, and for my body to not have any reactions to the many strange new bugs introduced into it.
Next steps are to keep on exploring travel insurance, return flights from Stuttgart in early October, and make a plan of action for applying for the Mongolian, Russian and Chinese visas. Getting bank cheques arranged for them, return Express post sachets ready, and as many forms pre filled in as possible. The trip organisers will send us formal letters of invitation from the various countries, which we have to include with our applications.
Jacob has got his plans sorted for returning home from the Hunter Valley, and much to our surprise, so has Cassidy. So the house will be full of our growing children just in time for us to leave.
And in a semi unrelated major decision, yesterday I let the Fish and Chip shop know I would not be collecting their veggie oil from them anymore. I have 4000 litres of fuel of various odd types in storage in an industrial area, far far too much for me to use soon, so there was little use for me to continue to collect more that needed filtering, drums washing and the general time commitment that comes with alternative fuels, not to mention the mess!!
So for this month, it has certainly been many things – moving right along indeed.