Annual progress check for Eve Online

It is time for my annual progress check in Eve Online. Again, this is for me, not for you. BTW, as of right now, I am at just under 69 million total skill points.

Since July 27th of 2015 to July 17th of this year, here is the breakdown of my skills:

Skillset 7/27/15 SP (millions) 7/17/16 SP (millions)
Gunnery 8.56 11.89
Engineering 4.87 5.01
Drones 5.71 8.26
Spaceship command 8.12 20.26
Armor 2.19 2.05*
Shields 2.68 2.68
Navigation 3.29 3.29
Electronic systems 1.41 1.45
Missiles 4.24 6.71
Production 0.37 0.37
Trade 0.21 0.21
Rigging 0.68 0.98
Targeting 1.37 1.37
Resource processing 0.9 0.90
Neural enhancement 0.16 0.17
Science 0.47 0.66
Social 0.04 0.04
Scanning 1.68 1.68
Leadership 0.37 0.65
Subsystems 0.04 0.27
Planet management 0.07 0.07
Corporate management 0 0

I still have no skill points in corporate management as I have no interest in running a corp.

I have no idea how my armor points actually decreased unless maybe it was from when my Proteus died.

And here is how the skills are distributed by level:

Total skills 228 249
Skills at L5 63 79
Skills at L4 63 78
Skills at L3 81 72
Skills at L2 12 12
Skills at L1 9 8

My goals last year were:

Get better at solo PvP. Get to where I can clear a C3 site solo. FC a small fleet. Kill a real character with a Proteus, not just NPCs.

How did I do? It would seem I lost track of my goals. I did get a little better at PvP I think. Although, I still do not do hardly any solo PvP. I could probably clear a C3 site solo, but I have never actually tried. I built a Proteus and got it blown up and never bothered to build another one. I FC’ed a fleet of 3, but it was PvE not PvP.

So what then are my goals for the coming year? No idea. I started training toward a dreadnaught. But I don’t see buying one in the next year as they are stupid expensive and I don’t spend enough time in game these days to get too rich. The corp is moving to Amarr space, so I’m not too sure what to expect there. Luckily behind Gallente, my Amarr skills are next highest.

The RV fun continues. Or when will it start?

When I left off, I was taking the coach into get some routine maintenance done as well as get the alternator checked out. $2,000 later, we have it back home safe and sound with everything working. Everything except the toilet that is. So still no big trips for us.

I took it into the local Detroit Diesel service center to get some proper work done. On the way there, the engine died on me several times. 5 if I remember correctly. Not happy times. I finally nursed it there. As I mentioned before, the oil change on the engine was just shy of $300. While it was in, I had them change all the filters and also do the same for the generator to make sure all the important stuff was up to snuff. I also had them check the air brake system to make sure everything there was safe. And of course I had them try to determine why my engine died so many times on the way there. Good news is, the brakes looked good and the oil and filter changes went off without a hitch. Bad news is the alternator was shot. As was 3 of the 4 batteries. Yeah, the batteries the place we bought it from replaced with “reman” units. What a bunch of crap. For 2 chassis batteries and 1 house battery it cost me just over $500. The engine dying was apparently due to the alternator issue. When voltage drops too far there is a solenoid that shuts off the fuel.

After the shop had it for a week, we got the call at 4:00 a.m. (my fault, I told a 24 hour service shop that any time was fine to call) saying the coach was ready to be picked up. We went in and got it at 6:00. Started up fine. Drove it home. Let it idle in the driveway for a bit while we tried to decide if we wanted to take it on a 600 mile trip in a couple hours. We decide to chance it. So I took it over to Costco for some diesel. I turn it off, and go to get fuel. I still hear an engine running. And it’s not the guy next to me. So I walk around to see if it is on the other side of the coach. Nope, it’s my engine running. And the key is in my hand. Awesome. I go inside and try dicking with the key. It won’t shut off. Screw it, I’ll just fill up and use the main battery switch to kill it. Works on the racecar anyway. I call the place that fixed it. They want me to bring it back right away so they can fix it. OK, fine. Trip is off I guess. At least taking this on the trip.

I get back there and the engine won’t die. Even when the main battery switch is turned off. Took it in because the engine was dying, now I can’t kill it. They fixed it a bit too well. They spent an hour trying to figure it out until I told them I need to leave town and told them to keep it as long as they need it to fix it right.

Fast forward a week, turns out the alternator they got was wired a bit different than the one Country Coach uses normally. So they fixed it. Now it seems to work great. The thing drives amazing. Can’t wait to get it on the road for a real trip. However, there is still the toilet issue. It turns out the toilet is an electric porcelain toilet. No shitty (pun intended) plastic RV toilet in this mansion on wheels. Problem is, there is a plastic disc that operates the flap. The thing is cracked all the way through. We tried super-gluing it together and putting it back in. It just snapped again. So I ordered a new one. The company that makes the toilet is not far away, in California. They won’t sell to me, I have to go to their dealer in New Jersey. That stupid 2” diameter flat plastic disc with a setscrew is $28 shipped. Holy crap! $0.10 of plastic, $0.05 of setscrew, and $0.50 of shipping for the low low price of just $30. Uggghh. Hopefully that is the last of our issues.

Oh, BTW, I don’t know if I mentioned our water flow issue before, but we had no water flowing out of the kitchen sink and shower. Turns out they were just clogged with garbage. Cleaned them out and they work fine. We will still get new ones eventually anyway, but not until all issues are fixed.

The RV Adventures Continue:

One of the reasons I started this category was so that people new to RV buying could learn from my mistakes and find out exactly what purchasing and owning a used motor home entails. I think today’s post is the beginning of a possible series of these lessons.

The 3 things to cover this time:

  1. Preparing for the first trip
  2. The voyage to the destination
  3. The voyage home

First of all there is the preparing. We bought all the things we thought we needed to stock the motor home up one. Cups, utensils, drinking water, camping chairs, etc. Then came time to fill the fresh water tank. I put the hose in the fill hole, and turned on the water. After a minute or so, water was overflowing somewhere around the center line of the coach. I assumed because it was full. Of note: the gauge inside showed the fresh water tank was full before I even started, but the warning voice thing tells me the fresh water supply is empty. So there is some sort of discrepancy already. At this point I go inside and turn on the water pump to test the sink. Nothing. I got a tiny drizzle for about a second. That’s it. Keep in mind, the dealer supposedly checked all this out. Well, at this point there was a noise outside the wife noticed that turned out to be some pipe near the water heater that had a plug removed. We turned off the pump and screwed the plug into the pipe and turned on the pump again. Still nothing. Well, this trip is just a day trip and we can go without water this time. So I will dig through the owner’s manual and see if I can find out what I am doing wrong. This topic is to be continued another time…

Second is the voyage North. For this trip we went a whopping 50 miles or so from home to an autocross. This was one of our main reasons for getting a motor home was to take kids with us to these races and have a place for them to hang out. I got in the motor home and started it idling for a bit since it essentially won’t run until it is warmed up due to the ECU cutting almost all power until water is up to temp. I get in, back it out of the driveway, and pull up to the stop sign in front of my house. There is this annoying beeping noise. It does this if something is not in travel ready condition. I looked all over, made sure the slide-out was fully retracted. Made sure the steps were in and the door was shut fully. Made sure there was no warning lights anywhere. Tried turning off the coach and restarting. Tried running the generator. Tried turning off the house battery. Nothing made it go away. Don’t want to be late for the race, let’s just go. Hopefully the noise will stop. Well, about 5 miles from home, I stop at a stop light, light goes green, I step on the throttle. The engine died. I tried restarting it and on the 4th time it finally fired back up, the noise was gone, and she ran fine all the way to the destination. Curious. I asked some people when I got home what it could have been, nobody had any clue. My best uneducated guess is that maybe the glow plugs were stuck on and got cylinder temps high enough it detonated and the ECU shut me down. Hell, to be honest I don’t even know for sure that the 40e even has glow plugs. I assume it does.

And lastly, the voyage home. After the race, I loaded up the kids, pulled the slide-out in, started the engine. That noise did not come back. Everything worked great while we were there. Except for the water of course. Just after I got on the freeway, the little voice tells me there is an alternator charge failure. Oh, this is great. Bitch couldn’t tell me this like 100 yards earlier before I got on the freeway. I looked down and saw that the tach bounced a couple times then went to zero. I can’t think of a lot of things running off the chassis battery other than maybe some lights, and the ECU, so maybe it will last. I kept an eagle eye on that voltage gauge. Normally, it would run at about 13V. But it was sitting at 12V, sometimes dropping to 11.5 then coming back to 12. Once I got off the freeway, when I would stop at a light, the voltage would drop to 11 at every light and slowly come back up to 12 while I drove. The little voice repeated herself every several minutes reminding me that my demise was inevitable. But she made it home without much drama (other than me stopping for a red light and locking up brakes, next time I will just run it if I have that much time). I plugged in the battery tender and it is keeping the battery good for now. I checked the belts, they are super tight, I assume that is normal for this big of an engine, but again, I don’t actually know. Just add it to the list of things I am learning by becoming a long haul trucker overnight J

Now my plans are to learn more about the water system by reading the owner’s manual in more detail. And I can do this while my coach sits at a service center getting once over. I know the dealer supposedly did it, but I don’t know how much I trust them. So I am taking it to a place that works on semi-trucks primarily, but is authorized by aftermarket warranty companies to do coach work. They also happen to be the state’s Detroit Diesel service center. I will have them do an oil change since I have no clue when it was done last. I will have them check out the alternator. And lastly I will have them just give the drive train a quick inspection to make sure all is well in Country Coach land. Oh, another thought for the new guys; the oil change on this sucker is about $260. This seemed a bit high until I did some research and it looks like this engine requires 30 quarts of oil. That’s right, almost 8 GALLONS of that black gold. I guess $260 isn’t that bad after all.

On a side note for new guys that are thinking of doing the insane like me and jumping from never having owned a motor home to owning a 40’ diesel pushing monster coach. She drove like a dream. So smooth. So quiet. So easy to keep in the lane. But braking an air brake chassis after racing a 3,000 lb car on race pads, can cause for some missteps / miscalculations. I will leave it at that, but mention, be careful when braking a behemoth like this.

BTW, the race went well, I got second in class if you care. Woot woot!

You can find previous posts in this series here:

Changes to format

WordPress decided to go and change the way media is put into my posts sometime in the last few months. I would have noticed this earlier if I would have posted more regularly, but I didn’t, so it went unnoticed. It is less automated now and I was having trouble finding their replacement method to make it consistent with my previous format. I have since discovered that they pretty much have no replacement method other than kicking it old school and manually adding a link to the photos.

What this means: Pictures are back to appearing smaller, but clickable for the larger version to open in a new window just as they were before. What their change was doing was taking my 1920×1080 pictures and scaling them to fit the width of the post. So, I went back a few posts and updated them with the new older format. So no real updates here, just cosmetic.

RV Adventures Continued

Our new behemoth has finally made it home. After almost 3 weeks of waiting after we purchased it, it has finally come home. Not without issue though…

The dealer we bought it from delivered it to our house to make up for the wait we went through. We spent the night cleaning it up and loading all of our vacation stuff in it. We ran the generator the whole time and made sure things were still working. Our new secondary home was being made to feel more like its designated role.

Country Coach-1-2

The Behemoth. 1998 Country Coach Magna 40′

The next morning, we went out to play with it again and discovered the batteries were dead. The main switch was off for the chassis battery, but it was down to 8V. I threw the 50a Harbor Freight battery charger and it got the batteries enough charge to turn the engine, but not start it. Meanwhile that super high quality charger started to smell like it was on fire. The batteries were only up to 10.5v, so I unhooked it from the battery.

It turns out the batteries that were “checked” were bad. At least 3 of the 4 batteries were. So the dealer sent a guy out to replace them for us. We spent the remainder of the day shoveling snow to make room to try getting this monster into the back yard to avoid any possible neighbor aggro. I know this thing is one heavy bugger, so we figured our best chance was to wait until morning when the  ground might be frozen and have a bit more strength thereby giving us the best chance of making it to the backyard without getting stuck or screwing up the grass.

So, the next morning rolls around and we make the move. And fail miserably. It turns out to get the proper line from our driveway I would need to remove a tree to make the turn. And of course the frozen ground didn’t help much. So we ended up with three inch deep troughs across our grass and one sprinkler head sunk well into the ground. So our next adventure is coming up with a solution to our parking issue. Meanwhile our new toy is parked at a property owned by the wife’s family that they use for parking such things. And it will likely stay there until we come up with a solution for the house.

Country Coach-1

The Behemoth. 1998 Country Coach Magna 40′

Lessons learned: Dealers don’t always check everything they say they did. 30,000 lbs empty is too much for a lawn, even if the dirt under that lawn is mostly gravel. A 40′ coach has a LOT of storage space that needs to be cleaned prior to filling it up.

Until our next installment…

Short Motorhome Update:

Well, during the systems checks, there was an issue found with the furnace in our Country Coach. It had air in the diesel line. To fix it, they had to drop the fuel tank which, if I remember correctly was about 3/4 full putting it at about 75 gallons or so. Then there was an issue with some coil in the heater so they have ordered a new part for that. Today they say we will have it tomorrow, but we have heard that a few times now.
On one hand, it makes me feel good that they are being thorough. On the other hand, it concerns me that it has been almost 3 weeks since we bought it and it has been in the shop the whole time.
On a side note, our weekend plans fell through so we don’t have to have the motorhome as soon as we anticipated.
We went crazy buying all the weird necessities for the motorhome this week. Things like drinking water hose, fuses, water pressure regulator, 50a-30a power adapter, etc… So since we don’t have the coach yet, we just have a huge pile of stuff for it in the kitchen and foyer. Not excited at all are we? Alas, the adventures have yet to begin.

Fixing up the Motorhome

So we bought the coach 2 weeks ago. We still have not taken possession of it. I don’t know if it is common practice in the world of motorhome purchasing, but after we bought our coach, they wanted a week to go through it, do a systems check, clean it up, do the emissions and safety stuff. We also had them add an awning during this time.

As it turns out, it took a little over a week for the awning to arrive. Also, we had made a short list of things that needed looked at like locks on storage doors, and the back-up camera. Well, during the systems check the hydraulic motor (I assume the electric motor that drives the hydraulic pump) went out and they needed to replace it. I am glad it happened on their dime, not ours, but it delayed getting to take our coach home.

The wife was itching to work on it, so the first weekend after we bought it we went down and pulled 3 panels out of the bedroom area. They were this terrible mauve color. One of the things showing its age in there. So we threw them in the truck, took them home, and got to work.

Here is what the panels looked like stock:


Factory panes

One panel was the headboard for the bed. The other 2 were on the walls. We went down to the local fabric shop and found enough material to do the headboard and maybe some throw pillows out of the brownish grey faux leather. But there was not enough to do all 3 panels. We were unable to find anything we liked that complimented the brownish grey so we went home to see what we had in storage. Luckily, the wife had some leftover material from a previous project that looked great. Catch is, it has stripes. And stripes are pretty critical for alignment. But I think we did OK:


Factory panes

Those studs on the leather piece are a brushed stainless decorative nail. That really will no go with anything in the coach just yet. But some day, all that brass will be changed or covered.

BTW, tomorrow is the day we are supposed to finally go pick up our new to us Country Coach. So maybe I will be able to get some decent pictures of it.