Burning!!! Aaaargh!

Submitted: Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 12:41
ThreadID: 33641 Views:2465 Replies:13 FollowUps:0
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The new EFFIE... F350 we call Black Bettie burnt last Saturday.

New = 1985 F350 4WD tray for towing the gooseneck...

Towing a big load of gravel up 'grey hill' which follows on from 'red hill', both gravel based hills of some note....... lost the clutch.

I pulled over to think about things. An overcast day .. it had rained.

A small tendril of smoke was rising from the bonnet. 'Hot' methinks....'very hot'... must be dust and oil smoking....... NO!!!! WORSE THAN THAT..

Jump out,,, run around to the other side where the bonnet release is [damn Yank car]..... run to the front.... How the @#$%^&*($%^&*(^&*()_^&*( do you open this bonnet?!!!!!! In 3 calmer previous occasions I had worked out the press down lever instead of other pull back lever designs..

Not now..... and as I struggled.... a red glow grew ominously at the back of the engine bay..... panic.... [okay I'm not that good in an emergency]

Finally I flip the bonnet open.... not without skinned hands and blood.... not enough to put out a fire though.

and.... yes there was a fire..... WITH FLAMES now..

Oh FFF.....orgoodnessake..... the only vehicle we drive without a fire extinquisher ...yet.

Wet gravel from beside the road .. FLING GRAVEL.... flames die down....FLAMES FLARE UP.....FLING GRAVEL.... flames die down... as I bed down again for the next hand full FLAMES FLARE..... FLING GRAVEL..... FLAMES DIE/FLARE.....

Mobile out speed dial Jen [my better 3/4] drop on road beside me as I still throw hands full of gravel "TRUCK ON FIRE.... TOP OF HILL... BRING EXTINQUISHER!!!!!"

[turn off phone.... don't want to waste $$$]

Remember the LPG! Run to the back and turn off tank.... MORE GRAVEL... MORE, MORE, MORE..... no Jen yet. Phone rings....


"Top of road........ NO SORRY ... TOP OF GREY HILL" Only 2 ks from 'top of road'

Fire nearly out now...... but bludy windscreen wipers working AND I NEVER TURNED THEM ON........ sparks..... shorting ......

Out with the Leatherman and hack hack hack at the battery terminals and leads.... shorting stops but fire is still going underneath.

Under the belly of Black Bettie...... hmmmm is this dangerous?

Flinging more gravel and sand onto the fire.... Oh.... I see the header wrap and extractors near the slave cylinder boot currently on fire.... I know why we have a fire now. .... pity the bloke didn't warn me.... this has happened before!!

Jen slides to a stop spraying gravel over my prone body..... but not the fire...'cos it's out.

Well.... sorta.... we empty the extiquisher over the whole area, but the air filter continues to smoke.... fixed with a bag of IV fluid she just happens to carry with her. [ambo].....

Good news .... I'm not dead..... [my opinion only at the time... cos it's her effie]
Good news.... Black Betty is not burnt to a crisp..... or my tandem trailer with the concreting gravel and cement mixer and.......

DAMN A BLUDY BIG SHOVEL that could have put the fire out in a couple of goes..... [I'm not good in an emergency]

I look down at my skinned, scraped and bleeding hands.

Good news.... I have battle scars and a good yarn

Then the Bad News..........

Slave cylinder hard to get..... had to go to a specialist outlet cos they are obsolete.

They're plastic.... so is the line. The line is not available anywhere.... but local Enzed help me fabricate one......

I have traced the electrics and rewired in a 'bush way'. Meanwhile I have stuffed the starter motor....

A couple of sunny days and time and motivation.... and $$$$

Black Betty will live again......

Must get a covernote on her soon..... 3r p prop fire and theft only....not worth more.

Had a fire?

Cheers Royce

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Reply By: Member - Roachie (SA) - Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 13:10

Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 13:10
Bloody hell............what a shocker!!!!!!!!

Sorry to learn of your misfortune.....hope the missus wasn't too upset with you (after all you threw everything at it....even some of your own skin!!!!!!)

Good luck at getting it all sorted out champ.


AnswerID: 171283

Reply By: PK Eildon (VIC) - Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 13:14

Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 13:14
Glad to see you still have a sense of humour :)) Well written. Funny how something made of metal can burn so well.
AnswerID: 171285

Reply By: Jo and Mark - Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 13:23

Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 13:23
Oh my Gosh! ok so this is not a funny matter, your vehicle catches fire, no extinguisher, vehicle worse for wear, you have come off worse for wear physically and now financially...for all this, I am really sorry... certainly now some unexpected things have come about, it is not good.

But forgive me.... your story played out like a Jim Carrey comedy movie in my head! The way you wrote it, of course I could see the serious side of it all, but you wrote it so well it just played out like a comedy scene done by Jim Carrey or Mr Bean!!!!!
AnswerID: 171287

Reply By: Alan H (Narangba QLD) - Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 13:53

Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 13:53

Can relate to your bad luck. Hope all goes well for you in recovering the truck back to normal.

A few years ago we were on on the rig road in the Simpson Desert when the mate's troopie caught fire under the dash. Still not sure what caused it but we ended up with a charred mess under the dash.

Being a good old truck we easily ran new wire around to make starter, lights etc work and had no more fires. Still don't know what caused it exactly. Must have had a wire wear through somewhere.

Are you saying that your fiire was wrapping that ended up on the exhaust pipe??

AnswerID: 171290

Reply By: Member - Ian W (NSW) - Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 14:51

Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 14:51
By the time a got half way through your post I was wetting myself with laughter - please believe me when I tell you it was very sympathetic laughter.

You must be a special sort of guy to retain or regain your sense of humour after such an incident.

AnswerID: 171299

Reply By: Gramps (NSW) - Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 15:35

Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 15:35

Really very sorry about the truck and I hope you get it fixed OK ($$$s though) but your account of proceedings was an absolute scream :)))))

That should be a very entertaining yarn to spin around the campfire for many years to come.

AnswerID: 171307

Reply By: Member - Stephen M (NSW) - Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 16:20

Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 16:20
Bloody funny, not so much your luck but the way you wrote it. Hope is all ok, still laughing to my self. Regards Steve M
AnswerID: 171315

Reply By: Member - Pezza (QLD) - Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 18:04

Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 18:04
G'day Royce,
That would have to be the best written yarn I've read in a long time, had a grin on my face all the way through.
As dangerous as that unfortunate incident was, you managed to make it sound like a comedy act, you should write some yarns for mags and make a couple of extra bucks on the side, if you don't already.
It shows you've got a hell of a sense of humour and a great outlook on life.
Glad it didn't turn out too bad and is repairable at least.
Thanks for a great read.


AnswerID: 171334

Reply By: Member - Royce- Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 19:01

Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 19:01
Okay..... let me tell you about the other fire...... see post
AnswerID: 171350

Reply By: Neil & Lynne - Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 19:57

Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 19:57
Very funny story, but it does have a serious side.

If there is a lesson for all here it is this,,,,,,,do NOT open the bonnet for smoke coming from the engine until you are prepared for the fire. Opening the bonnet introduces heaps oxygen to the compartment which will instantly turn something smouldering to devastating flames.
Better to get the extinguisher, water or the shovel for sand etc organised first then open the bonnet to attack the fire.
If nothing at all is available......get out the marshmellows & make the best of it. lol


AnswerID: 171368

Reply By: Muzzgit (WA) - Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 22:56

Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 22:56
I watched two blokes franticly trying to undo battery terminals on a HJ60 while smoke poored out from under the dash.

This is why I now have big wing nut quick release battery terminals on both batteries.

It was scary, watching helplessly as two fully functional grown men fumbled with a large screwdriver cos they couldn't get their hands on a spanner or cresent.
AnswerID: 171444

Reply By: Darryn - Tuesday, May 09, 2006 at 09:14

Tuesday, May 09, 2006 at 09:14
Hi Royce, having met your better half Jen I can't belive she didn't have an extingusher in the truck. Well done on your efforts and your great writer to be able to make it seem so funny.

Cheers Darryn
AnswerID: 171665

Reply By: Truckster (Vic) - Tuesday, May 09, 2006 at 10:20

Tuesday, May 09, 2006 at 10:20
A fitch would have prevented this.
AnswerID: 171676

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