As you know, Chuck was terrified of Central American roads. So much so, that he attempted to fake lameness in a Wal-Mart parking lot in OK. Since then, Chuck has mostly given up on lame attempts to get us to turn back, and is mostly having small problems to keep me on my toes.
On Mexico’s south-west coast, he developed a spastic turn signal issue, that I finally traced to a cracked solder joint, in the multifunction flasher relay/unit. When beating on the fuse panel fixes a wiring problem, you know its time for investigation.
Here is the dirty little bastard apart. I had to drop the fuse panel to pull it.
One free internet to the person who can spot the cracked solder joint on this PCB.
A few minutes and some super-glue later, Chuck was street legal once more.
As explained in Tubo de Escape and Other Capers, on the way to Semuc Champey, we trashed a tire on some hidden debris, 8-ply sidewalls? Meaningless. The next day we had some more exhaust carnage. Much more than we experienced on road construction in the Grand Tetons. We got this damage partially repaired in Guatemala City, the muffler itself is internally damaged. We got it patched up in a dirt yard on some Sketchy (yes, sketchy with a capital S) ramps in León, Nicaragua.
Certainty in the skills of “El Aguila” was not inspired on first site. However, they had an actual sign, which counts for way more than it should down here.
Your friendly neighborhood Nicaraguan muffler dudes.
At this point there was a guy directly behind us (I kid you not) repairing/assembling/body-working a car with a hammer, chisel, and some sketchy pliers. It had been in a total-out-worthy head-on collision. I will say that it looked nearly drivable.
With the outlet welded up and braced, we were set to go.