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My Friday survival situation

Discussion in 'Wilderness & Survival Skills' started by Bill Siegle, Aug 5, 2012.

  1. Bill Siegle

    Bill Siegle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 3, 2000
    Had a real bad Friday afternoon in the woods. My wife and I were headed up to Scout Camp to visit our son and we got within five miles of camp when I smelled the antifreeze! Apparently the truck lost a hose and had been spraying my precious fluid out for a long time. At highway speeds, the engine stayed cool. Wasn't until we were about eleven miles off the highway on MT Hood that I got that nose full of the bad smell and the temp gauge shot up. Luckily I had some high temp radiator tape in the truck. However I was not packing a lot of water on board. I fixed the hose and poured the two liters of water from our Nalgenes in the radiator. Some very nice folks saw us and pulled over and gave us about four more liters. I was sick with not being able to head into the camp to see our son as we had told him we would. I just could not run the truck uphill another five miles with so little water on board. Downhill to the river we went! We filled up at the river along Rt 35 and then headed into Hood River stopping to top off the engine every 5-10 miles. Made for a heck of a stressful ride but we made it home. I figure the truck suffered for it and in the morning it goes into the shop to see if I am repairing it or replacing the truck. It's an old 97 Honda CRV with close to 200,000 miles on it. Might be it's time. One small half inch long rip in a half inch diameter hose caused me and my wife to almost be stuck way out there!
    So what did I learn? I learned I am psychic! I found that radiator tape about two weeks ago in my old truck box and threw it in the CRV! That hose was not replaceable on that hill unless somebody knows how to build a field expedient 90 degree bend half inch hose :) also I need to throw in a set of thin gloves in the kit. I used an old gun wrag/t shirt to handle the hot parts but some thin cotton gloves would have worked better working around the hot engine. EDC'd flashlights were extremely helpful along with the Leatherman Supertool I keep in the glovebox. I was also happy to have two wool blankets on board if we had to stay out overnight plus matches and a fire steel. I can not stress how important that tape was though. It made the drive out of there possible. By staying mobile we did not have to go even further into the realm of a survival situation.
  2. coaldigger


    Jan 27, 2007
    Glad to hear it worked out !
  3. Bigfattyt

    Bigfattyt Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 23, 2007

    Hopefully the engine is ok.
  4. Codger_64

    Codger_64 Moderator Moderator

    Oct 8, 2004
    My truck is 22 years old and I always carry spare fluids, clamps, etc. That doesn't mean that I carry a spare alternator. What do you think crapped out on me coming home from the river last weekend? Tow bill, inconvenience and a new alternator, it is back running now. I almost made it home, just fifteen miles away when it shut down, battery completely drained. I left the truck overnight in a man's yard (yep, carry tow chains) after my friend showed up to pick up me and my canoe trailer. Luckily no one hit the truck before he got there as it was blocking a lane of a narrow two-lane highway, and no one stripped the truck of tools and tool boxes overnight. Rollback couldn't come until the next day, one of the trials of living in a small town and breaking down on a Sunday evening.

    Hate that your trip was ruined and hope your engine wasn't.
  5. collecter


    Aug 21, 2002
    Congrauts on getting home safely. It seems you have the foresight to keep misc fix-it items and you're obviously handly around vehicles. Many people today are helpless even with something as simple as patching or changing a flat tire.

    Glad your ok and I hope your truck is repairable.

  6. Fanglekai


    Jan 7, 2007
    Add tow coverage to your insurance. It's cheap.


    Nov 24, 2008
    good deal.

    but it is smarter to keep your belts and hoses new.
  8. bdmicarta

    bdmicarta Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 16, 2012
    Any mechanical device made by man can fail. My father has owned a garage for over 50 years so he makes a living repairing broken vehicles. I hate being stuck with my own broken vehicles so I always carry tools and such when traveling. This will allow me to fix some problems but not all. I've been stuck before where I did manage to fix my vehicle. I've also had water leak problems and had to dip water out of an irrigation canal with an ice chest. Depending on the age of your vehicle you should carry more or less emergency supplies.
  9. Bill Siegle

    Bill Siegle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 3, 2000
    +1 to that! I got close to home and let the insurance cover a flat bed the rest of the way home. Pulling over to top off water was easy on the highway but going through town at night, it actually would have been a lot more dangerous. Plus truthfully I wanted to get "in range" of the distance insurance would cover :)
  10. RWT


    Mar 15, 2011
    Glad you made it ok. Reminds me of my highschool and college days when I was just happy I could keep the beast running.
  11. schmittie

    schmittie Basic Member Basic Member

    Nov 28, 2009
    Radiator tape, huh? Brilliant!!! I'll be addin that to my car kit before our next trip.
  12. shunsui

    shunsui Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 12, 2008
    +1 Good idea to replace those old belts and hoses before they go bad.

    Tires too.
  13. not2sharp

    not2sharp Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 29, 1999
    It is good to hear that you made it back ok.

  14. lmalterna

    lmalterna Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 12, 2002
    My Dad and I once had a similiar issue, a roll of electrical tape, a split open Budweiser can and a couple of hose clamps mended things until we got where we were going. We were heading camping and had plenty of water jugs with us. This was mid 70's and few places were open on Sundays back then.

    Most people do not do nearly the preventative maintenance they should. Mechanics maintain their cars, plumbers their drains, HVAC guys their cooling/heating equipment. Tight budgets often mean dealing with problems as they happen. Being alert, having a few supplies on hand and using your head is often all we have.

    Sounds like you made out good.

  15. Battle Creek Knives

    Battle Creek Knives

    Feb 23, 2010
    Sorry to hear about that and i really dont think you could have had enough water to make it uphill to see you son no matter what, bummer.. Thanks for sharing as i will also add some high temp gizmos to my truck..
  16. Mannlicher


    Nov 19, 2008
    I too drive an older vehicle. 1988 Toyota 4Runner. Lots of miles on her too. Not only is this my daily ride, but it also functions as my bushcraft/hunting/4X4 trail riding truck.

    I have a rubber maid tote in the back, with a fairly extensive bit of gear. The normal 'extraction' stuff, snatch ropes, shovels, jacks, but also a good amount of spare parts such as hoses, belts, fluids, tape, wire and electrical stuff. I carry a full set of SAE and Metric tools. I carry the repair manual for my model Toyota. I also take my BOB, lots of water, machetes, axes bungee cords, tarps and a chain saw.

    ...........you just never know what might happen. :D
  17. cramsey3006


    Aug 2, 2010
    It always pays to be prepared for roadside issues. Too many people depend on stuff like AAA and other services, IMO. Of course, I'm the black sheep in my family when it comes to these things.

    Here's an example: My oldest son was in Chicago for his national academic team competition. I couldn't make due to work constraints, but my brother (super uncle! lol) managed to take off and go.

    So he calls me on the first day and says "the match started but I'm not in there because we got a flat tire on the way."

    I said "Ok? why aren't you there?"

    He says "waiting on AAA to change the tire.

    I reply with "You have a Jeep Liberty, the tire is on the back door? You don't even have to get under the truck."

    He replies "Well, it's hot and I don't want to get dirty and go the matches filthy."

    I ask "how long have you been waiting?"

    He says "about an hour"

    He pays for AAA. All in all, it took almost 90 minutes to get to the competition.

    I bought a Snap-on 1/2" cordless impact gun and carry tools in the vehicle.

    I'd have been finished in less than 15 minutes and watching the team matches instead of waiting on AAA.

    I'm the goofy one, of course. "You paid how much for a cordless impact!?!" :eek:
  18. Codger_64

    Codger_64 Moderator Moderator

    Oct 8, 2004
    I use a rollback for a tow on average once a year. It is usually under $100 (was $75 this last time). I do my own repairs for the most part. And no, I don't change all of my hoses and serpentine belt every year. Or replace the starter, fuel pumps and alternator as preventative maintenance. Of course I could take the cheap way out and buy a new $30,000 truck but... this one is paid for and runs fine most of the time. Besides, a couple more years and I can put antique plates on it. :p
  19. Esav Benyamin

    Esav Benyamin MidniteSuperMod Staff Member Super Mod

    Apr 6, 2000
    As long as they see you driving it, they'll know it's an antique anyway!
  20. Lt.Col.Vortex


    Jul 22, 2012
    Good to hear you kept a level head, you handled the situation correctly. Not many people do that today.

    Yes, do carry extra fluids. I have a old milk crate with trans fluid, oil and some fuel additives. I blew a trans line heading home after a long day of trailer hauling. Getting stranded 20 miles form home on some back road in Georgia is not that fun.

    Also, carry an extra belt. I've had a main belt shred itself one time...you'll learn to carry a spare.

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