Well, close to home. Made the 7 hour round trip to Lake St. Peter to rescue our 79 Travco from the heavy underbrush it called home for the past eight years.
Tow truck operator Brad of Shantz Towing in Picton handled the extraction skillfully. I didn’t thing you could have feelings for a hunk of rusty metal, but I found myself thinking “We’ll look after you now, old girl.”
Now in the sunlight with her wheels on a road for the first time in eight years, the Travco showed her years of neglect. The fiberglass body was intact, but filthy, with patches of lichen and green moss growing from cracks and crevasses. Sitting on grass for eight years had taken its rusty toll on the undercarriage. There was no power or batteries in the Travco so I have no idea how the electrical works, but the headlights and running lights were intact.
On the road Brad moved the Travco back and forth to test how it would tow. The wheels squealed loudly in protest. The brakes were fused with rust. Brad told me if they didn’t loosen up, there was danger of a friction fire. He crawled under the bus and pounded on the wheels with a heavy hammer to release the rust’s grip.
After a few tries Brad judged the Travco safe for towing. “If we smell smoke on the trip home, we’re in trouble,” he said as he eased onto the highway. I didn’t want to ask why, but he explained it would mean the brakes locked up again.
The brakes behaved and we made the uneventful three hour trip to Picton. The Travco got plenty of stares and waves from people we passed, but I’m not sure if they were encouraging or sympathetic.
We made it to JC Automotive at 4:30. We chose this garage because it is just down the hill from our home, and they appreciate and like to work on older vehicles. The owner has an awesome ’53 Chevy Rat Rod he’s working on for a show later this month.
I’ll have a better idea of what the Travco’s certification needs are by the end of the week. For now, I’ve posted a few “before” photos to remember our first day with this classic RV. Please add comments, questions, etc. I am looking forward to meeting more Travco fans!