Chapter VI The Unknown Road


It took a little over two hours to get to Little Rock, AR and then we were northbound toward Jonesboro. We had about two hours to reach Jonesboro which would put us right on time to let the equipment leaders prepare the set up for the choir presentation. an hour north of Little Rock, I noticed the temperature getting warmer in the coach. Inspecting the gauges and the air conditioning switches, I determined that the air conditioner had either gone out or had turned itself off.


Thinking it was the thermostat, I turned it both ways to increase the air circulation in the coach but to no avail. It continued to get warmer. Not hot just yet, but definitely getting warmer.


This was totally unsettling as we were just getting started on the trip in a brand new coach. I knew from previous experience that the air conditioner system could handle the environment. For this to be happening was not normal.


In some cases, you had to actually turn the thermostat up to keep the coach from getting too cold. Now it seemed that the system could not handle the load.


I did notice that the amp meter gauge which measured the output from the alternator had a flicker from time to time. This is not unusual as road conditions will cause all of the gauges to move from time to time. I discounted the alternator as the problem since we were in a brand new coach with a brand new alternator.


I had bragged to Robert that we were getting a brand new coach that had less than 5,000 miles on it. The outside, the inside, and the esthetics were all immaculate. I was proud to have the coach and to take it on its first out of state trip.


We were about 30 minutes out from Jonesboro, AR when it became obvious that the air conditioning system was failing and the coach was getting warm. I suggested that the windows be opened for the duration of the travel for the day and I would look into it after we got to the church.


Arriving at the church, the loaders unloaded the luggage from my coach and the equipment from the church coach. Since part of the air system is located in the luggage area, we might have hit a switch or fuse loading the coach that could cause the problem. the luggage bays were completely unloaded, I got inside the rear bay. I checked the wiring and switches that were visible.


Nothing showed anything out of the ordinary or that there was a problem. It was clear; however, that the air conditioner system was not working as even the fans were not running.


I told Robert about the dilemma and that I would contact the office to see what the next step would be. I would let him know that evening when we came back for the presentation. The presentation was scheduled for 7:30 and then we were not due back at the church until 8 AM the next morning.


By the time, we unloaded and I had checked bay and the wiring, the office had closed for the day. It would not be open until 7AM the next morning. Knowing that I would have time to call in the morning, I let it go for the evening.


I reported to Robert that night at church that I would be on it the first thing the next morning. Obviously we had a problem and the office could tell me where to take the coach to have it checked.


With the coach running as it should except for the air conditioning system, Carol, Mark and I went to check into a motel for the evening. After getting our accommodations arranged, we went back to the church for the evening service.


It was a great night at the church. The choir seemed to be acutely on track at every juncture. It could have been that Arkansas State University is located in Jonesboro, AR. The choir was told there would be students majoring in music in the audience and they rose to the task.


Early the next morning, I called in and talked to Gary, our office manager. Looking over the system and his check points, nothing seemed out of order. He informed me to double check the gauges and the exposed wiring. Everything was powered as it should be.


I again called Gary. Between the times I had reported the problem and calling back again, Gary had called the Eagle repair facility in Memphis, TN. They were the closest repair shop. They assured him they would drop what they were doing to look at it as soon as I could get there. were going through Memphis on our way to Glasgow, KY, so it made sense to load and head that direction and let the experts look at it.


If anyone could fix the problem it would be them. I reported back to the church at 8:00 am; informed Robert; we loaded and set out for Memphis.


Sometime out of Jonesboro, the air conditioning system came on. Within a matter of minutes, the system was cooling. We closed the windows and celebrated our good luck and moved on.


Everything was fine, but I still felt it necessary to stop in Memphis and let them look at the system. The fact that it had occurred in the first place meant that something was still out of the ordinary.


Although at present we seemed to be working fine, the unknown issues could return at any moment. With all the miles still ahead of us, it was prudent to get it checked even if it was working properly at the moment.


I was concerned that I might go into the facility in Memphis and the air conditioning system still be working. There is a ton of wiring on these new coaches. The relays, intermittent switches, regulators you name it. Problems do not exist if everything is still working.


It is called in the repair trade as CND problems. Can Not Duplicate is most used by the airlines when one of their gauges begin to malfunction on an airplane. Unless they can make it malfunction again, the problem continues to exist. There is not a solution until the problem is located.