Bus Update: "No News is Good News" or "No Good News"?
Wed., Sep. 14. 2011 1:34pm EDT
We're flying to our concerts the next two weekends in Oregon, Washington and Texas, but our bus will be waiting for us when we return, like a big, wounded foot. We haven't said much about our bus lately, but they say if you can't say something good about someone, you shouldn't say anything at all ...
If you've been reading our updates on the previous weekends' concerts lately, you know that we've had batteries dying at service stations and headlights giving out on turnpikes, and last weekend the generator died near the end of our concert. All of these problems seem to stem from the alternator and regulator problems we first told you about in July.
When the bus hasn't been on the road, it's been at the repair shop of a reputable automotive electrician, who has been pulling his hair out trying to figure out the true source of the problem. He has consulted many other experts in his field, and finally there may be a light at the end of the tunnel.
ApologetiX guitarist Tom Milnes, who has known the aforementioned electrician for many years, has had many conversations with him in the past month. Yesterday, it looks like they finally came up with the likely problem and solution (it'll cost about $2000, but if it works, it'll be worth it), which Tom also double checked with another good electrician friend of the band, Bob Rabenstein.
We asked Tom to relate it in his own words:
Bus stop! Bus go? O.K., this is an update on our MCI *White Albatross* tour bus:
These buses are mechanical wonders, really built to last. This 25-year-old bus has well over a million miles on it, yet it rolls on. Unfortunately for us, when things finally start to go bad, they really go bad!
When our alternator went, it took out the regulator with it, ruining the battery too, as it sang its swan song. Tracing the old wiring and locating the components has been a nightmare! This vicious cycle has cost us time and money, but we may have found a solution.
If we bypass our current electrical system with a rebuilt one -- an alternator (with a built-in regulator) and a brand-new battery (or two) it just may do the trick. Trial and error when you are on the road is no fun at all (especially the error part) so, Lord willing, this could be the fix we need to get us out of the fix we're in!
We need our *White Albatross* to take us thousands of more miles this year alone, so please pray that we would make the wise choice. Thank you, and may God bless you and yours.
Thomas R. Milnes (Obstinate Theologian)