One of the most stressful experiences…

Two weeks ago, I endured one of the most stressful experiences on the road that I can recall. In my Car-Nut-Ball lifestyle, my ex-wife Donna and I embarked on a trip to Las Vegas with my toy hauler trailer in tow, with the intention of purchasing a Mazda Miata project car. While I anticipated that the car would fit inside the trailer, my past experiences with anything car-related rarely go smoothly, and loading the Miata proved to be no exception. What was supposed to be a quick 15-minute task turned into over an hour of struggle, involving two broken heavy wood planks. Fortunately, despite the ordeal, the Miata emerged unscathed.

Departing Las Vegas later than planned, we were faced with the grim reality that my older Chevy 2500 pickup was achieving a dismal 7.8 miles per gallon on the journey. Originally intending to complete the round trip in a single day, our plans were dashed about 20 miles
east of Kingman when not one, but two of the driver’s side trailer tires blew out. My first inkling of trouble was seeing tire fragments flying off the wheel in my rearview mirror. I promptly pulled off I-40 as far as I could without risking the outer ledge, though it was a nerve-wracking spot to be stranded, especially with semis barreling past at high speeds just a hair’s breadth away.

Despite holding a Premium AAA membership, which I assumed covered all roadside assistance needs, I was dismayed to learn that RV/trailer service was not included. After enduring an hour of tense waiting on the freeway shoulder, I made the decision to move to a safer location down the road. Unfortunately, the second tire gave out within a mere 200 feet, leaving us trailing sparks from both wheels in desperate search of a safer spot to pull over. Thankfully, a suitable location emerged about a quarter mile later, allowing us to breathe a sigh of relief a few feet away from the freeway edge. Donna, sensing my stress, offered reassurance, and her presence was a comfort in the midst of our ordeal.

Left with no other choice, I decided to leave the trailer overnight, hoping it would remain. intact until morning. At 7 a.m., I began making calls, reminding myself that every problem has a solution. Much to my relief, that solution materialized in the form of two new trailer wheels and four brand-new trailer tires, all swiftly installed on-site. By 10:30 that morning, we were finally on
our way home.

Included are a few photos showcasing the new 16-inch stainless steel mufflers I installed near the front fender of the ‘79 Ford Pinto Chevy V-8 drag racer. Additionally, I replaced the uncomfortable aluminum racing seat, which had been mounted six inches too far back, with a new bucket seat. Though each task required some creative “redneck engineering,” the end result is solid and functional, which is what truly matters.

by Jerry Hutchcroft
Car – Nut – Ball