Thursday, March 29, 2012
Back to Gaffney
If you're traveling along I-85 between Spartanburg, SC and Charlotte, NC and you come across this giant peach, you've arrived in Gaffney, SC. We've yet to pass by these parts during peach season, but anytime we're in the neighborhood, we take time to stop. You see, this "peachy" town is the home of Freightliner Custom Chassis, where Bullwinkle's chassis was born.
Not too far from the factory sits FCCC's only factory-owned service center. It is, in our humble opinion, the best place for chassis service in the country. They work exclusively on motorhomes, school busses and small delivery trucks. But, it's mostly motorhomes, especially this time of year. Unlike every other Freightliner service center we've visited, this place welcomes motorhomes. And, they definitely know what they're doing. We're calling this next leg of our travels the Spring Moose Maintenance Tour. We're making Gaffney our first stop with Bullwinkle's annual chassis maintenance check-up.
We'll be in northern Iowa (on the third - and hopefully final - stop on our maintenance tour) before the first appointment here becomes available, so we decided to take our chances as a "work-in". We arrived at the service center Tuesday afternoon and checked in with Pat, the friendliest customer service person in the world. She invited us to set up camp in one of the dozen or so sites in their lot. From our corner spot, we watched the parade of motorhomes moving in and out of the service bays. This place is very busy this time of year!
We made the most of our waiting time to enjoy the pleasant early Spring weather. We did a bit of geocaching, explored downtown Gaffney and appreciated the beautiful dogwoods in bloom.
Yesterday afternoon, Pat made us an offer. If we could have the moose ready to roll in 15 minutes, they could work us in. We had no idea we could get this moose ready to move so quickly! Before we knew it, Bullwinkle was in a bay ready for his "spa" treatment, and we were sitting in the comforts of the waiting room, cats and all. A few hours later, the moose was released and we were free to roam about the country. Given the late hour, we decided to spend another night at Camp Freightliner.
This morning, we took in the plant tour. No pictures were allowed inside, so you'll just have to trust us when we say this it was very interesting. We got an up close and personal look at how all of Bullwinkle's essential parts come together. And, the factory was humming today. According to our guide, business is definitely looking up!
With our business complete in Gaffney, we decided to head for the hills. We made the short drive to North Carolina and are all settled in to our quiet spot in beautiful Waynesville.