Part 3: Comb Wash Tire Training


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The Trip

When we arrived in Comb Wash and set up camp, we headed into Arch Canyon to see some Anasazi ruins.  We had a great night in Comb Wash; the rain stopped and the wind was still.  We gathered around our campfire to share liquor and stories.

The Photos

The photos below are what we saw.

Early in the day, I launched the quad copter and got some photos of the surrounding area.  The canyon with the Anasazi ruins, Arch Canyon is shown in the photo above.  The white Volkswagon camper is with another group.

Looking north in Comb Wash canyon from an altitude of 45 meters (the maximum altitude setting for this quad copter).

Looking back at our camp site.  These photos were taken with a Ricoh sports camera.  Better than the GoPro but not as good as my Olympus EM-1.

We hiked over to the ruins to check them out.  We had to cross a swamp and bushwack through reeds to get to the site.

There were some interesting pictographs consisting of the "usual" designs found at these sites.

Portions of the site were well preserved.  These walls were in good shape.  Clay-based mud is used as the mortar to seal out the wind and rain.

There was a ton of labor required to produce a rock wall such as this.

There were some interesting rock carvings on the canyon walls.

These rock carving designs were rather unique; we had not seen these designs at any other site that we have visited.

Some of the rock walls were high enough that a scaffold would have been required to build the wall.

More interesting carvings.

The Arch Canyon site was quite large and consisted of a number of dwellings and many walls.

Chris Cole was leading the tire training for the U500 guys.  Some of the owners had never changed a tire on their truck, so it was very useful for them.  Brad, the owner of the orange U500 is dressed in his overalls because he is going to be doing the bulk of the work.

First was a class room session where Chris covered the essential topic of safety.

Vince covered the topic of lug nuts and highlighted the difference between standard lug nuts and "skirt nuts".  The skirt nut (black) has a flange that fits tightly into the extra space between the wheel and the lug bolt.

The Mercedes wheels are "hub centric" and the central portion of the wheel hub centers the rim on the hub.  This wheel shows some evidence of "clocking" where the wheel rotates on the hub until it impacts a lug.  Note the space between the lug and the rim.  This can be unsafe, so an upgrade to skirt nuts.

Several kinds of lifting devices (jack, air bag) and aluminum foot blocks.

The first step is to get the jack correctly and safely positioned.

The group had insufficient blocks to use a regular jack so Chris demonstrated a prototype long extension jack he is building.

Once the load on the axle was removed, the lug nuts were loosened and the tire/wheel removed.

The U500 wheel hub is a beefy assembly.

As the training was progressing, I noted the thunderheads building in the west.

As the training session was wrapping up, the group was loading in anticipation of breaking camp.

Chris answered some final questions about the tire changing process.

The tire was put back on Brad's rig and the lugs were tightened to specification.

Mark and Gail's rig.

The thunderheads continued to grow as the morning progressed.

The group broke camp and headed out of Comb Wash toward Mule Canyon to examine some more ruins.

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Photos and Text Copyright Bill Caid 2014, all rights reserved.
For your enjoyment only, not for commercial use.