Java's F450 'Rough Road' RV

Spent the last weekend at Mt Baker, snow was great Saturday and turned to rain Sunday morning....

Really bad Avy conditions so we stayed in bounds. Just skinned up Sunday morning.

And a little truck issue..... The awning met its demise..... Friday it was raining when we got there, I put the awning out, it turned to snow.... Tried to crank it in and the gears stripped. It was downhill from there. Tried to manually put it in, so I could strap it closed, arms broke, I ended up on a snow covered roof cutting it loose..... UGH!

Got all the parts home, the arm hinges are what broke.... Appear to be cast aluminum. I may be able to fix/rebuild them. But holy hell the replacement fabric is $$$$$. It was a frustrating night.
Do you have an outside shower? Could you have sprayed the ice off with hot water?
I do have a shower, but it wasn't frozen at the time.... Just wet snow. But that would have been a great idea! I whacked it with the crank handle to get as much snow off as I could and tired to crank it in, that was all it too to strip the gears.
Wrap up from a busy last couple of weeks!

Got some great snow, spent 11 days straight in the truck.

Couple nights at Whistler.

Dog and lunch time. Bumper BBQ is awesome.

New tires are working well, rub like hell in the front on the drivers side.... I think Bushwacker cut outs are in order.

Stayed in Bend at Mt Bachelor for a few days. Great snow! Then Blizzard when we tried to leave.

Skinned up the Cone for some fresh turns

Dont leave the storage door cracked open..... (I have a temp sensor in there so I usually just leave it unlatched) Drifted inside it...

Dog Snuggles.

Not bad after a WINDY night. Sled drove me nuts flapping around.

Morning to leave.....ICE, a lot of ice on everything and howling winds.... Good thing we weren't skiing that day!

Crap tastic drive over the passes by Mt Hood. Semis jacknifed on the road, up and down hill, guy with a big enclosed snowmobile trailer between them, and the snow was POLISHED. And... the plows had not gone by to sand yet..... Idled down in first gear, but that was a nail biter.

Stopped for lunch on the downhill side.

Made it home just fine after that. But I blew the truck up..... Somehow an exhaust stud in the EGR crossover pipe broke off. Stopped at a rest area, and maybe the heat/cool cycle did it, but either way, massive squealing exhaust leak now.... Its going to the shop, will get up pipes and the big oil leak done too. Hard to drive right now though, cant make boost well, so EGT go up, slow down, more load.... Yeah.
Awesome pics as usual! Good luck with the exhaust
Exhaust is not going to be fun, but its going to be my $$ for someone else's problem.... Its already scheduled for next week, sadly they were super busy and it basically puts the truck out of commission. I did drive down and have a nice fire in the wood with some old friends for new years, but that was enough driving (a couple hundred miles and no big passes)
Well that sucks about the exhaust! You still trying to ski the Powder Highway in a couple weeks?
Yeah, I needed to do the up pipes anyway, so its just a broken stud while they are in there, but its not going to be a cheap fix.... Trans has to come out for access. I would try to DIY, but I just don't have the time, I might consider it if I had a damn shop it fit in!

Yep still planning for Skifari!
Finally back in the truck. All the up pipes are done, the EGR crossover pipe was blown too. Does not drive much different, EGT's are about 50 degrees cooler or so, but is MUCH quieter in the cab! All the turbo noises come out the back now it seems.

So diesel guys, now that I have my leaks fixed..... Is it worth going to a 4" side exit? Will I find any realistic efficiency gains? I have a 4" DP and 4" pipe where the DPF was, but then necks down the the 3.5" OE from there back.

Great day. We skied, a lot.

Snowmageddon has happened..... Seattle got 8" of snow and the world has ended.....

So we went skiing.

It was COLD, like -6 cold. But that makes for amazing snow!! 10-12" of the lightest fluff you can imagine.

Tired legs....

Snow was good enough we stayed another day. Wind packed it pretty hard in spots overnight unfortunately. But we ran into some old friends and the kids got to play all night.

Waited till everyone left the ski area, and headed home. Uneventful drive in the snow the whole way. Parked safely back at home.
Today's project, rear tow points. These will bolt directly to the frame rails, giving me great tow points in the rear, something I am missing.

Started with a 3' piece of 1x6 steel.

Cold saw is awesome.

Layout. Pretty simple.

Big hole cutter, just picked this up, needed 1.5" hole and was not confident that a hole saw would work. Run it at the right rpm and this this is awesome! More or less a mini annular cutter that fits a drill press.

Drill the frame side holes, I under sized them so they can be reamed to final size in place, that way there is no slop on the bolts between the frame and the tow points. Trim the corners off.

After a little grinder and file time they are good to go. I wish I had a mill so I could round the edges for soft shackles, but such is life. No I am not grinding all the mill scale off! :D

Al Swope

Founding Member
Someday, some archaeology student will stub their toe on that thing, pick it up and ask "what is the mooring plate for a deep sea oil rig doing out here in the mountains". His thesis paper will likely invoke extraterrestrial forces that brought it there.
Someday, some archaeology student will stub their toe on that thing, pick it up and ask "what is the mooring plate for a deep sea oil rig doing out here in the mountains". His thesis paper will likely invoke extraterrestrial forces that brought it there.
Yeah it might be a little overkill..... But I am not an engineer, so no FEA here, but I figured I couldn't break 1" plate...

Old bolts beat into place to line things up, new grade 8's going in. Reamed each hole in place with a 1/2" drill, that sucked. A lot.

Bolted and torqued.


Got out for a day of skiing too. These mornings are so worth it.

Survivable? :D
Snow was GOOD!

Left the Stevns pass weekend crowd and headed to Mission Ridge. Had never skied there before! A TON of terrain for just a couple lifts.

Had to be home mid day Sunday, so we had to leave when they got a bunch of fresh snow :( and the no start condition came back.... Lot dudes were super friendly and tried to jump to no avail. Starter clicks but no turn. I climbed under to to the classic whack starter..... Nothing. Checked all the cable and I think I may have found the issue, the main power lug wiggles ever so slightly on the back of the starter, where you can see or barely reach..... So on cold mornings I think its just not getting enough amps to the starter. Pulling on the cable that runs to the starter worked, probably made a bit more connection. Truck started and drove home just fine. I'll disconnect all the power and see if I can get in there and clean and tighten that up.

Al Swope

Founding Member
So you wear your ski gear to climb under the truck? Stand up, brush off, and you're good to go? Beats working on a mud encrusted toy:brokedown
After a brutal Crossfit games workout Friday evening, we jumped in the truck and headed East. Sunset was great, until we found a head on accident..... Parked and jumped in the back and had dinner.

No new snow, plus weekend lines means skins cam out! Fun time, we did two full runs, and one later in the night with the pooch. 3200ft in elevation gain over the day, not bad!

Skins off at the top!

Nightime shenanigans.

Truck has been great again :D
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