It started during spring wheat harvest. Chase checked the oil on one of our diesel triaxle grian trucks. It was gray. Water in the oil. Bad deal. I called Chad, a diesel mechanic who came highly recommended. He told me to haul the truck to his shop in East Grand Forks. Rodney and I made a midnight haul, with my dad, Don, following behind - just in case. Chad diagnosed the problem, and overhauled the truck. Expensive, but necessary. First truck.
Then, on the last day of soybean harvest, our 1998 Kenworth semi lost power while Chase was driving it. Once it died, we could not get it started. I had it towed to Chad's shop in EGF. The diagnosis - injector broke and fell into the cylinder, wrecking it. The solution - overhaul. Yikes. I started to compare cost of overhauling a nearly 20 year old truck with buying a different truck. I learned more than I ever cared to know about diesel motors, transmissions, clutches, gear ratios, etc. In the end, I found a rebuilt motor that we collectively decided that we could put into the truck ourselves. This project is still in progress. Second truck.
During corn harvest, Fred's Volvo semi lost power and had a slight knocking sound as it ran. About the same time, my Volvo fertilizer tender truck wouldn't start. Who did I call? You guessed it - Chad. He came out and looked at my tender truck. Power to the fuel pump from the engine's computer was the problem. He essentially bandaged it up so we could make it through the fall, but it would have to go in to his shop to get wiring fixed. Third truck.
Chad then went over to Fred's to look at the Volvo - the head gasket went out on the middle head. Don and I loaded the Volvo semi that night and hauled it to Chad's shop. Lo and behold, it turned out the problem was worse than originally thought. Overhaul. Fourth truck.
Both of the overhaul jobs turned out very well, and our tender is at Chad's shop getting looked at right now. Rodney and Trevor have taken the lead on the 98 Kenworth project and making good progress.
It's been an interesting and expensive summer and fall for our trucks. But at least we know we should be running in tip-top shape for next year.....I hope.