I thought I'd take Althea up to Yorkshire for a few days over Christmas so I chucked a couple of my guitars in the back and headed for the M1. On the way I stopped in Watford for lunch with my friends Toby and Ru where I dropped off an amplifier which was part of a swap for a Roland drum kit and off I went.
About 100 miles into the trip I realized that the screws I had used to secure the driver's seat were not all the way in and that they were being literally a pain in the bum. I stopped at a service station and cut up some foam as a temporary fix.
As I left the motorway and hit the steep hills of Yorkshire I noticed the already loud engine sound had started to become deeper and more guttural. When I started the engine next morning it was very noisy and smoke was pouring from the front. The cab filled with smoke too.
The flexi exhaust pipe had come away from the engine. Not good. On closer investigation it became obvious that it had never been properly welded. This explains the very loud engine and lack of power from the start. I bought some emergency repair stuff and did my best to patch it up but to no avail. I even managed to coat my right leg in dog shit whilst doing it too.
Being Christmas and Sunday by then I had no chance of getting it fixed. I made the decision to drive her home anyway. So I did. 170 miles down the M1 in the dark with a top speed of 55 mph and the smell of smoldering plywood on the hills.
Today I tried Kwik-fit and not surprisingly they wouldn't attempt it. The local welder will probably do it but he isn't back for a few days. I think I'll buy a cheap basic welding kit and have a go myself.