As the title of this post implies, this past week has been a mixture of bus-related maintenance work and travel for Photoshop/photography seminars. I mentioned last week that we were spending time with our great friends Sean and Louise in the Las Vegas area. Sean is excellent when it comes to engineering stuff and has been troubleshooting the generator on my bus for a while now. It has recently come to the point, however, where the generator really needed attention from an engine shop. We found one in the Vegas area and parked the two buses there while we waited for our Monday morning appointment.

The guy from the engine shop shows Sean what might be wrong with the generator on my bus.

I had to fly out on Sunday to teach my “Kelby Training, From Focus to Finished” seminar on Monday in San Antonio, so I couldn’t be there while they took apart the generator. I pretty much got updates from Karen and Sean regarding the status. It turns out, the generator’s “head” was cracked and needed to be replaced. It was challenging to find a new part and arrange next-day shipping for a giant hunk of metal, but that’s what we did. When I returned to Las Vegas, not only did I want to take care of the generator problems, but I wanted to replace the house batteries on the bus. The old ones were on their last leg and were in desperate need of replacing. While we waited for the generator part to arrive, we moved to the Main Street Station RV park (pretty much a parking lot with hookups, but at $17./night, it’s the best deal in Vegas for an RV.).

In preparation for the battery replacement, we had to empty the first bay under the bus. This made us truly realize how much STUFF we were hauling around, and we ended up purging a bit of it, which was great. After removing all our stuff from the bay, we had to access an awkward battery compartment and remove the old house batteries. This might not SOUND that bad, but the bus has three house batteries…. and they weigh in at about 175 pounds EACH. Sean and I went out to drop  off the old batteries and buy new ones. By the time we returned, we had a mini audience at the RV park, with some guests watching the process in lawn chairs. This actually proved to be a good thing, because our “next door neighbor” offered us his portable floor jack, and it proved to be a crucial tool in getting the new batteries in. While Sean and I worked on replacing the batteries, Karen shot some video, documenting the process. You can see that below.

When the bus work was finally complete, the four of us spent a night on the town, having dinner at a nice tapas restaurant and then exploring Vegas’ Freemont Street Experience. Sean hadn’t been to Freemont Street in ages and wanted to check it out. Overall, it was a very relaxing night, ending a very un-relaxing couple of days.

Sean, Louise, me and Karen.

After all the bus work was done, Karen and I both flew out… to different locations. I flew to Peoria, IL, where I taught a 1-day seminar with the Peoria Camera Club. The event went very well, and the PCC gang was just great! While the event was on Saturday, we did a short photo walk on Friday night and I did a light painting demo with them as well. You can see one of the resulting images from this below.

An image I made while doing a light painting demo with the Peoria Camera Club.

Karen flew to New Jersey to spend time with her family. After the Camera Club event, I flew to NJ as well, and will be spending a few days with her family before we both drive down to Washington DC on Thurs. for the next Photoshop World Conference & Expo.