Hawkrod 'RoadKill' Cross Country Trip 2022

HawkRod

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I have finished all the "statistics" yet, but here are a few to get us rolling:
(Note: Edited to correct some math errors)
* We traveled 12,207 odometer miles. (The odometer on my car reads too high(exactly 10%) after I installed the Gear Vendors - no time to fix it before trip)

* We traveled 11,097 actual miles based on my calculation of 10% high.

* We used 798.7 gallons of gas.

* Overall fuel economy for the entire trip (all driving combined) was 13.9 MPG based on actual miles traveled

* I did not keep track of gas costs, but my rough estimation is that average gas costs were about $5.75 per gallon. Using that value, we spent roughly $4,600 on gas alone. OUCH!!!

* We drove in 28 different states.

* Excluding the time I was with my wife (we stayed in nice accommodations then), we camped 57% of the time, we stayed in a hotel/ motel 34% of the time, and we stayed in cabins that were in between camping and hotels 9% of the time.

Tomorrow I will compile some thoughts on car performance, repairs, etc.
 
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Richard Cranium

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* I did not keep track of gas costs, but my rough estimation is that average gas costs were about $5.75 per gallon. Using that value, we spent roughly $4,600 on gas alone. OUCH!!!



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JDmac72chrgr

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Dad, brother & me did AF museum about 15 yrs ago, only had 10 hrs to explore; YES, ITS HUGE!! We were able to grab the shuttle to the "other hanger" to see planes FDR, Truman, Eisenhauer, JFK/LBL used, interesting. Haven't made it back yet, on "go back" list.
Thanks for ALL the pictures & update, INCREDIBLE. With the beauty of this country, WHY GO TO EUROPE (yes I get it, go see where your from: Ireland, Scotland, England & Holland in my case)? America (and Canada!!) is beaitiful, so "ROAD TRIP AMERICA" Hawk just gave us a "little bit" of what's out there.
Did Hawk & his travel companions have a good "Runner Roadkill" INCLUDING hick-ups, I do believe they did. With that said, every penny spent of petrol was money WELL SPENT!!! LIVE LIFE, for we are here but for a short time.

Side note: Stay off QEW during rush hour, YYYEEEEE OOOWWWW!!! NYC, Washington DC, & Philly has NOT seen rush hour traffic like the QEW!!!
 

Don Frelier

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We traveled 10,986 actual miles based on my calculation of 10% high.
This didn't seem right out of curiosity
I get 11,097 ( 12,207 *10/11)
Perhaps I'm misunderstanding the 10% number
So if I'm right then your mileage was higher than you thought....
 

moparedtn

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we spent roughly $4,600 on gas alone
mother-of-god-super-troopers (2017_10_11 10_04_54 UTC).jpg
daaaamn (2017_10_11 10_04_54 UTC).jpg
dizzy.gif
Geezus.png
This is far, far more than I had guessed - to say the least.
Holy cow.
Again, thank you guys for taking so much time and effort to share it all with us,
because to be perfectly honest, some of us will never get a chance for similar adventures.
It means a lot to some of us, trust me. :thumbsup:
 

HawkRod

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This didn't seem right out of curiosity
I get 11,097 ( 12,207 *10/11)
Perhaps I'm misunderstanding the 10% number
So if I'm right then your mileage was higher than you thought....
Don, as usual you're spot on. I was rushing before we headed over to have dinner with family. The correct math is not ODO Mileage * 0.9, but rather ODO Mileage / 1.1. So your math is correct.

I have edited my post on my "statistics". I gained a few miles and 0.1 MPG!
 
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HawkRod

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I'm not looking for accolades or a pat on the back, but I do appreciate that some of you folks like the trip postings. In several cases, it was a lot of work to take time to find WIFI, transfer pictures, post them, etc. The fact that folks have enjoyed the journey makes me glad I posted it up here - real time. Hopefully people get a taste of what it is like to do one of these trips.

I encourage all of you do do some trips with your cars. OK: mine was excessive at almost 2 months. But instead, take your car for an overnight to a nice bed and breakfast or a family member's house. Take a few days or a week if you can. Trust me - it is worth it.

I don't yet have an overall trip cost calculated yet. I will exclude car preparation costs, but I'm guessing actual expenses for everything during the trip (including, but not limited to gas, food, lodging, museum/ park fees, tools, repairs, etc.) will be right around $10,000 total for the both of us. That's $5,000 each for a two month vacation - not bad, really. Per week, that is about $625 each.

Anyway, once I get a few numbers I will provide an overall car summary - look for something (likely) tomorrow...
 

1 Wild R/T

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Air Force Museum is awesome... I spent about six hours there back in 2003.... Walking through the first building there was a group of about seven Japanese tourists who for the first hour were constantly in the way of taking pictures of planes... I tried zooming past them & naturally by the third or fourth plane they'd caught back up.... So I stopped & waiting for them to move on a couple planes.... And they proceed to slow down.... Grrrrrr.... Then I saw a plane I knew the history of.... Bock's Car... They walked up initially oblivious to what they were seeing then they figured it out, you could see them change from enthusiasm to disgust.. They hurried along & I never saw them again for the rest of the day...
 

Nxcoupe

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Dad, brother & me did AF museum about 15 yrs ago, only had 10 hrs to explore; YES, ITS HUGE!! We were able to grab the shuttle to the "other hanger" to see planes FDR, Truman, Eisenhauer, JFK/LBL used, interesting. Haven't made it back yet, on "go back" list.
Thanks for ALL the pictures & update, INCREDIBLE. With the beauty of this country, WHY GO TO EUROPE (yes I get it, go see where your from: Ireland, Scotland, England & Holland in my case)? America (and Canada!!) is beaitiful, so "ROAD TRIP AMERICA" Hawk just gave us a "little bit" of what's out there.
Did Hawk & his travel companions have a good "Runner Roadkill" INCLUDING hick-ups, I do believe they did. With that said, every penny spent of petrol was money WELL SPENT!!! LIVE LIFE, for we are here but for a short time.

Side note: Stay off QEW during rush hour, YYYEEEEE OOOWWWW!!! NYC, Washington DC, & Philly has NOT seen rush hour traffic like the QEW!!!
If it has been 15 years, then you will not recognize it. It has change immensely. I also recommend seeing the packard museum in downtown Dayton. It is about 20 min from the Air and Space museum. Very much worth the time.
 

joe smith

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Air Force Museum is awesome... I spent about six hours there back in 2003.... Walking through the first building there was a group of about seven Japanese tourists who for the first hour were constantly in the way of taking pictures of planes... I tried zooming past them & naturally by the third or fourth plane they'd caught back up.... So I stopped & waiting for them to move on a couple planes.... And they proceed to slow down.... Grrrrrr.... Then I saw a plane I knew the history of.... Bock's Car... They walked up initially oblivious to what they were seeing then they figured it out, you could see them change from enthusiasm to disgust.. They hurried along & I never saw them again for the rest of the day...
Guess they shouldn't have bombed Pearl Harbor.....
 

joe smith

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As I read this I had confused it with the SAC museum in Nebraska... Is this a decent museum? Like always, I was in too big of a hurry to stop there.....
 

Nxcoupe

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As I read this I had confused it with the SAC museum in Nebraska... Is this a decent museum? Like always, I was in too big of a hurry to stop there.....
It is 4 buildings now and growing. It is the National Air and Space museum. Used to be called the air force museum, and if you like aircraft, history of flight, WW history, or space exploration it is all there. Takes days to go through it.
 

Nxcoupe

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Also, just outside of Dayton, right off 75 is the Carrillon Park, which has the Wright B flier on display as well as a period correct village behind it.
 
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HawkRod

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OK folks: As promised, here are some "statistics" and thoughts on the car.

The Car

It is a 1973 Road Runner. It has a 340 stroked to 416 cubic inches, 9.4:1 compression, aluminum heads, Thermoquad carburetor and headers. Transmission is a 727 with a recent performance rebuild. The car also has a Gear Vendor's Overdrive with .78:1 overdrive. Rear is a 3.55 Sure Grip with 275/60R15 tires. Front tires are 235/60/R15.
Car was cleaned up, painted and partially restored in the 90s (limited funds), then driven for 7 years in rain, snow, etc. when my son had it. The car had thrown a rod out the side of the block, and then sat for 5 years. At that point I decided to use it for a cross country trip.

Things done before the trip
  • I built a new engine for it, then a transmission, then bought a new Gear Vendor O/D and installed that.
  • Worked like mad to address a driveline vibration. Significant shims in the rear addressed 95% of the vibration.
  • A/C was not working, but we found a hole in the condenser. Tried to roughly braze the hole shut, but did no other A/C repair other than charging the A/C.
  • Replaced all brake pads as well as rear wheel cylinders.
  • Replaced all front end wear parts, then had car aligned.
  • Swapped out a too small 600 CFM Edelbrock carb for a 850 CFM Thermoquad essentially 2 days before the trip.
  • Fixed two rust holes into the cabin. Holes were in front wheel wells between the inner and out wheelhouses.
  • Small miscellaneous repairs for things like washer bottle, heater control cable, etc. I made sure all systems worked.
Repairs during the trip

DateIssueParts neededCost to fixComments
5/3/2022​
Hard Startingunknown$ -Not fixed, tried insulating line, no change
5/5/2022​
Frozen RF CaliperNew caliper$ 199.12Also bought belts and fluids
5/9/2022​
Glass fuel filterMetal fuel filter$ 14.83to avoid fuel spill
5/11/2022​
Failed master cylinderNew master cylinder$ 82.65
5/11/2022​
Failed rear tireTwo new tires$ 456.89
5/15/2022​
Jumped out of O/DNone$ -Not fixed, only did occasionally. Wiring?
5/17/2022​
No sparkCoil and/or ECU$ -Existing parts
5/19/2022​
No sparkCoil and/or ECU$ -Existing parts - unsure of issue - wiring?
5/22/2022​
No sparkFailed coil; no resistor in-line$ 69.00
5/22/2022​
No sparkApprox. 50 mile tow$ -Have AAA Premier
5/26/2022​
Front tire wearAlignment$ 125.87
5/27/2022​
Chip in windshieldWindshield chip repair kit$ 18.99To keep any cracks from spreading
5/28/2022​
Exhaust Leak2 nuts, bolts and washers$ 6.00Header collector bolts came loose
6/3/2022​
A/C ChargeR134a Freon$ 36.75California charge of $10 for a can added
Total repair costs:$ 1,010.10

Some of my own thoughts on the car and its performance (in no order)
  • We did NOT baby this car at all. When the speed limit was 80 MPH, we cruised at the mid to upper 80's. The engine and driveline are awesome. The engine was built for cruising, not for 1/4 mile drag strip driving. It has TONS of torque at any RPM, and accelerates very easily at any speed without fuss. Highway cruising was a breeze. On top of all this, it runs just fine on 87 octane gas. I couldn't be happier with the engine and transmission.
  • The .78 overdrive is too little. At around 75 MPH the RPM is about 3000. This car has tons or torque and could easily push the car along at highway speeds with engine RPM in the 1800's. A steeper overdrive (or a different rear) would have been nice and likely would have increased fuel economy a lot.
  • We drove on some seriously nasty roads. The 13 miles to Chaco Canyon in NM are some of the roughest roads you can imagine - serious washboard, plus holes, divots, etc. The car handled it all.
  • You will see above that we had several instances of "no spark". I am convinced there is some wiring gremlin and once I mess around with parts under the hood I "fix" it. The Electronic Ignition is a simple system - there is no reason we should have had all these issues. I think there could be a wire that has some issues - I will need to play with this.
  • The fact that the car was hard starting was a pain in the butt, plus embarrassing as well. I will start a separate thread on this. Now that I am home, I want to spend the time to find and fix this issue.
  • The A/C worked for 1.5 weeks after we left, then quit. When we charged it again, it only held for a day. So something starting leaking more severely than when we left. I decided to leave it alone and fix it when I got home, so most driving on hot days was windows down!
  • Hey: Remember how everyone talks about old tires and the issues using them? My rear tires were 10 years old, and I figured I would wear them out on this trip. But they failed and left me stranded. Want reliable tires? Use fresh tires.
Overall, I am extremely pleased with the way the car performed. It handled driving through a blow torch hot desert, as well as starting when the temperature was 28 degrees one morning. It handled any roads we threw at it. It drove in sun and rain, with A/C as well as the defrosters on. It got filthy inside and out. Through it all, it just kept chugging along.

I wouldn't worry about going out for another 10,000 mile ride. I'd replace my front tires, really fix the A/C, fix the hard starting as well as find the ignition gremlin, and then I'd take it anywhere without worry!

The RoadKill Runner performed!!! :thumbsup:
 

zyzzyx

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Phew! Lots of things to attend to! Well, you can be proud of all of the work you did on the
engine and the transmission and all of the systems you "Touched". The car took you in and
out of no-man's land without too much grief. Put another feather in your cap Guys!
 

1 Wild R/T

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The car has a Chrysler Electronic Ignition? What is the air gap on the reluctor? Did you set it with a brass feeler gauge? I think the spec is .008-.010..... Set it at .005-.006 It may help with starting & theres a good chance it'll solve the intermittent no spark..
 

Nxcoupe

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Very cool. As soon as I read your OD ratio, I thought why so steep? I think with the torque that engine makes combined with a 3.55 gear a .5 to .6 makes sense. I have a 4 cyl turbo with 3.73 and a .68 OD and it works perfectly together. It has no torque until boost. Lol. Electrical gremlin almost sounds like the bulkhead or one of the inline connectors have spread terminals. Wish I was there with my meter when it happened. Fantastic trip. Bet it seems like it flew by. I am def doing this now. I need to make my way to Pittsburg and we meet up at hoffbrau haus!
 

JDmac72chrgr

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As @Nxcoupe stated, sounds like a bulkhead or other connector. Did resistence check on ignition switch during steering column rebuild, YUP, INTERMITTING BREAK, new switch from Dantes, (replaced turn signal unit too) column built & installed. Bulkhead connector deleted, plated, going with Painless harness, back in 1982 the 71 Charger bh connector caught fire, not risking it with this car.

NICE THREAD HAWK!! Glad you kept us as part of your trip!!! THANKS!! See you in Carlisle!!
 
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