Well so that's annoying, I just wrote this whole long post and my browser froze up...sigh.
Ok so Bottom Line Up Front, we got the rig out, and without cutting anything.
We had to leave the campground, I'm not going to get into why in this forum, but just to say, we had to leave immediately. We were not kicked out, quite the opposite, we just learned things that forced us to leave ASAP.
Ok so, today one of the tech's from LCI called and explained a simple way to retract the jacks to us non-electric types:
- Disconnect the two wires leading from each electric motor at each jack.
- Pull your vehicle around with jumper cables attached to your battery.
- Strip the wires back on the motors about 1" and attach the jumper cables to the stripped cables
- the motor should go either up or down, if you want to reverse the direction of the motor, reverse the jumper cables on the motor cables.
Easy? YES, but too late. We didn't do it this way.
We managed to heat the front landing gear enough so it would move, then spent about 2hrs jacking the landing gear up 2" so my F350 would fit under the front and dock. Which it did, and I litterally jumped for joy. Then we cranked it back down and lifted the feet into the jacks. As there is no descernable way to jack up the middle two feet, we took the tire jack out fo the F350 and jacked against the frame at each of the remaing electric jacks. This allowed us to relieve enough tension on the foot to pull the pin and push the foot back up into the jack. Middle and back doing this took about 2hrs. It would have been quicker but it was -55 with wind chill and I move slower in the cold.
At this moment the F350 blew a cooling line and I lost an injector (yep same time) now with coolant all over the ground the truck spuddered to a halt. I fired it back up, and now am the proud owner of a 2004 Ford F350 air cooled 6.0l V7 Powerstroke
Even with only 7 cylanders firing it still managed to drag the 385 to Duluth.
To their credit both LCI and Forest River called all day Saturday and Sunday. Monday we got the rig to Bullyan's RV in Duluth, and, because they are awesome, it's in the shop now for a "few weeks" dealing with the jacks, leaking roof, fridge, etc.
What a drama.
The only horrible terrible thing to come from all this is that this little tiny hotel room is getting smaller by the minute we're probably going to have to, I can't even say it...move into a house.
A house. With a foundation, and a roof, and it doesn't go anywhere. Ugh. Just sits there dumbly and can't move.
So I wanted to thank all of you for your words of support, for the tips, ideas, tricks. For all your PMs, Calls, emails. For those of you who challenged us, and supported us. Our journey is NOT over, even with this house thing. Though it looks like our winter is over in the rig, we'll be back in it in no time. And mabye now we can pull the ice castle out to where it belongs (on the ice!) and catch a 'pout or two!
Thanks again, and we'll continue this post as we learn more about what all went wrong with the camper, and what was done to fix the issues so we can all continue to learn something.