Road Test

When the main preparations were finished, it was time for a serious test drive to take the truck in hand and make sure everything was in order. Two weeks ago, we set out on a 3-day road test, the interesting part of which took us through the Gorges of the Tarn, the Mont Aigoual, and the Gorges of the Ardèche.

We covered over 1000 km, on steep, winding roads to put the engine and gear box through their paces. We also tested out the sleeping arrangements, camping near Yssingeaux, Sainte-Enimie and Vallon-Pont-d’Arc.

On the second day, we experienced an issue with the transmission. From time to time  when accelerating or decelerating, the next gear would not engage. This anomaly at first occurred sporadically, but became more frequent by the third day and was definitely something to investigate further before leaving for Tunisia. Subsequent trouble-shooting has indicated that the anomaly is most likely due to a problem with the ECU (Electronic Control Unit) that commands the gear box. We’ll devote a future post to describing this problem and its diagnosis in more detail.

The test drive also brought to light a leak in the cooling system, specifically in the fuel pre-heater. Closer inspection revealed that the pipe connecting the engine and the pre-heater was not correctly fixed to the pre-heater, causing a small leak that only became evident after a sufficiently long drive. It is likely that this problem was already present when we acquired the Erg Machine. Properly reconnecting the pipe stopped the leak.

A second leak in the cooling system from the stopcock was more difficult to correct, because it was less accessible and required special tooling. Since time is short until departure, we decided to ask Scania to replace the part, eliminating the risk that the leak could worsen while we are in the desert. The replacement will be done on Friday.

Apart from these two issues, the Erg Machine performed extremely well during the road test and is ready for the trip to Tunisia. We drew up a list of other minor adjustments and missing equipment, primarily camping supplies, to obtain before we leave.

Originally published on Tumblr

One Response to Road Test

  1. Pingback: Diagnosing the Transmission Anomaly « Erg Machine

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