Recently I have been optimistic about our chances of making it through the stay in Tucson without having to fix anything. Optimism is also known as the kiss of death. Never indulge in it, expect the worst and be pleasantly surprised.
Yesterday we took the bus down to stay in the parking lot of W.W. Williams so that we could get the front end alignment checked bright and early today. We haven't moved since the end of October, so we were rusty on departure procedures. We did dodge the bullet of closing the slide on the broom handle. That would have been bad. It was close, but a carefully modulated scream alerted Jim to the danger.
We were supposed to be on the machine at 8:30. However, there was another vehicle on it, so there was waiting. Then we were told that the alignment guy had broken his finger and was going home. The backup guy would not arrive for two hours. At that point we and the office manager decided we should go get the wheel balancing done while awaiting the backup. So, they went to take the bus off the machine.
The machine they use has three sections, they lift independently of each other. They lowered the front, they lowered the back, and they high centered the bus on the middle part of the machine.
See the bay door in front of the wheel? That's the badly damaged door. The door in front of it is also bent. In order to remove those doors, the fender has to come off and the side radiator cover has to come off. They're all on a contiguous rod that runs the length of the bus behind the forward slide.
Here is a close up of the door.
And here are the holes in the bottom of the door. It will have to be re-skinned.
To say we're pissed about this would be a massive understatement. They had ONE JOB. Get the bus off the machine without damaging it. It has to go in to the collision repair place on Monday, and will be there for four days. We will be in a hotel. I hate hotels, I hate restaurants, I hate packing. Williams feels terrible about this, and will be paying for the body work and the hotel, but those doors will never be the same.
So there was that. And there is this.
And there is this.
Thus ends my reportage of Bloody Monday.