Posts tagged: RV

The best laid plan…

By , December 11, 2009 12:15 am

The plans of the diligent one surely make for advantage…

Proverbs 21:5

The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men, Gang aft agley

Robert Burns

Yes, there are definite advantages to planning and being prepared. But life happens…

image When you get sick, you go to the doctor. When your RV is “sick”, it goes into the shop. When the RV is in the shop, (especially for an extended period), you are “homeless” and therefore need to do the following:

  • Get alternate accommodation (friend, family, hotel, etc…)
  • Pack your toiletries and clothing (have a toiletry bag on standby and an overnight bag handy)
  • Put away or secure your “valuables”
  • Expect it to cost you

We have had our share of the RV (first the Storm and now the Star) in the shop.

Knowing what to expect helps.

No longer homeless!

By , November 25, 2009 8:35 pm

Our house is back! 🙂

StormDark

We had to send the Storm into the shop for a while to get some work done and have been without it for a while now.  We just got it back yesterday and are getting “resettled”.  Here’s the quick rundown on what we had done…

  • New suspension airbags installed
  • Water tank fill hose replaced
  • Water tank breather tube cleaned
  • Exterior propane outlet installed
  • All tank level sensors replaced
  • New engine air conditioner compressor installed

I’ll give a longer post on some of those later.  It would have been about $3000 worth of work if we hadn’t gotten the extended service plan when we bought the RV.  That plan just paid for itself a couple times over. 🙂

Sorry about the bad picture, but I didn’t feel like setting up the good camera and tripod in the rain.

Mountain Roads

By , August 18, 2009 1:01 pm

If you’re curious what it’s like to drive a 30-foot RV up and down a mountain road, I made a short video of our trip down the mountain from the cabin in Tennessee.  It’s shaky, as the camera was being hand-held, but it’ll give you some idea of what you can do with an RV if there isn’t anyone in the way. 😉

If the player doesn’t show up properly here, you can go here to access the original on blip.tv.

Short update and a quick tour

By , August 17, 2009 2:52 am

First, a quick update…  we’re in Christiansburg, VA, about 4 hours from home.  We stopped for the evening because we didn’t feel like rolling in to our neighborhood and having to do 12-point turns to get parked at 11 o’clock at night. 😉  We’re not impressed with the campground, but it was there and fairly cheap.  It’s got power and water and we can dump our waste tanks in the morning before we leave.

The trip down the mountain in Gatlinburg was relatively uneventful, except that Dasy hadn’t fastened the front curtain very well and it came loose.  I had to do a quick stop for that, as it was near impossible to concentrate on not falling off the mountain while getting smacked in the face with a floppy curtain.  Otherwise, the RV handled it just fine.  I think our brake issues may finally be behind us, as we’ve noticed no other oddities in that department since leaving Waynesboro a few days ago.

The family reunion was fine, but we didn’t actually do much other than the zip-lining.  That was fine by us and we got to spend a fair amount of time with a bunch of the family we don’t see too much of usually.

Since I’m awake and harvesting various pictures from several of my digital cameras, I figured I’d give you a really short tour of the inside of the RV.  Basically, I wanted a couple of reference pictures before we did too much to change anything.  They’re not great shots, but they show the inside fairly well.

The first view here is from the “hallway” looking forward into the main living room area (click on it for a larger view).  StormInside1 It’s a bit messy, as this was taken after the brake issues on the Blue Ridge Parkway and we were just kind of shuffling stuff around while we waited.  About the only things you can see here that we’ve already changed are the speakers and stereo.  They’re all relatively cheap (on special at Crutchfield), but they’re WAY better than the junker system that came with it.  The rear speakers (you can see one laying on the couch) aren’t mounted into anything.  They’re just boxes with long wires.  I can run them to the bedroom, stick them outside for patio listening, or stick them in the cabinets above for movies.  I just wanted some flexibility instead of cutting dedicated spaces for them.  The next major changes are going to involve the TV system.  It’s an older tube TV, so it doesn’t accept the digital signals and it takes a lot of power.  I’m going to switch it out with a small LCD.  The mounting kit arrived right before we left and I didn’t feel like dealing with it.

StormInside2 This next shot is from the main living area looking backwards towards the bedroom (I’m standing next to the living room table).  The main door is on the left, followed by the small pantry, the fridge, a closet, the bathroom sink, then the bedroom as you look towards the back.  The kitchen is on the right, although it’s not pictured very well.  It has two steel sinks, a microwave, a three-burner stove, an oven and a ton of little cabinets.  The black box on the wall is the main sensor panel that tells us when our various water and waste tanks are full or empty, plus the status of our water pump, propane supply, battery voltage, and a few other things about the RV’s current state.  Behind that wall is the shower and the toilet, which is separate from the bedroom.  I’ll diagram or photograph the whole bathroom area eventually.  It’s kind of neat how it was designed and is one of the things we really liked about the RV when we were looking at it.

I’ll probably do a video walkthrough of the RV eventually.  I found out that my laptop doesn’t have enough guts to handle the video from my camera, so all video will have to wait until I can get time on the home system to do some editing.  I may also have some decent footage of the zip-line stuff, but I haven’t gone through it all yet, so I’m not entirely sure. I’ll let you know when I get some editing done.

Two steps forward, one step back.

By , August 3, 2009 8:40 pm

I guess it’s actually three steps forward…

First, I took the beastie out to a friend’s in Leesburg today.  I needed to run the engine for a bit to get the batteries charged back up and to see if the engine charged the coach batteries.  I found out that it does.  That’s a good thing. Of course, I think it should also charge when plugged in, so I’m still working on that.

While in Leesburg, we managed to get quite a bit done.  We junked the old radio and installed a new one.  We also replaced the front speakers and added rear speakers.  Much better now. 🙂

Another friend who also happens to be an electrician stopped by (mostly to check out the beastie), but we convinced him to tackle some electrical work while he was there.  He quickly and easily installed a new surge supressor for the RV.  Considering that it’s a 30 amp 110v circuit, I’m glad he did it and not me. 🙂

Unfortunately, on the way home, the front brake started overheating.  It’s probably sticking and needs to be replaced.  Unfortunately, since it now overheats (quickly), we can’t drive it anywhere to get it fixed.  So, I’m going to take a look at it tomorrow and see if I can noodle through it.  If I can’t, then I guess we’ll be making use of that new AAA plan real quick. :S

Starting on the list…

By , August 1, 2009 3:31 pm

…the list of things to be fixed.

There are a number of small issues with the RV that need addressing.  Some need to be fixed quick, others are on a to-do-in-the-future list.  The first one I tackled was the plumbing. 

We had a rather nasty surprise on our first night in the RV on the way back from Texas a few weeks ago.  We turned on the water pump (which provides pressure to the shower and faucets when we’re not connected to city water) and found water gushing out of the bottom of the RV.  Needless to say, we turned it off and used city water instead.  We had an outside sprayer (like a sink spray nozel) installed in one of the bays and I suspected that was the culprit.

I crawled under there today and found out that the installer had used a bypass valve instead of a cutoff valve.  The bypass wasn’t hooked up to anything, so it sprayed all over the place the minute the water was turned on.  I simply capped off the bypass and all is now well. 🙂  The pump pressurizes the system, water stays where it’s supposed to and the outside sprayer works.

One job completed successfully!

The second job was just discovered today and it pretty much trumps everything else.  Our house batteries don’t seem to be charging.  More on that in a future post when I figure out what to do about it. :S

The Return Home

By , July 26, 2009 7:58 am

Days 2 and 3 were both fairly uneventful. 

We left Little Black Creek Water Park around 7 am and headed north on I-59.  We stayed on I-59 until Chattanooga, then we picked up I-75 for a bit.  We followed that north to I-81 at Knoxville, which put us on the main road that would get us the rest of the way home.

We decided to call it a night and found Baileyton RV Park (N36 20.341 W82 49.393).  It’s a nice little place, but we chose it because we were overdue for some power and internet connections (they have WiFi).  The site was slightly sloped, but otherwise it’s a nice place. 

We took a walk around the park, mostly checking out other motorhomes.  We had a few short conversations with other guests, then went back to our RV to clean up and get ready for bed.

Showers were in order, so I turned on the hot water heater.  About 20 minutes later, Dasy checked it and reported that “it’s kinda warm”.  That was good enough to take a shower in my opinion, so she went first.  She came took a very quick shower and came out to report that the hot water “isn’t”.  Turns out that the hot water heater wasn’t working at all.  I checked other gas appliances, and none of them were working either.  I called the dealer (at around 9pm) and Marilyn walked me through checking all the safety switches and valves.  Apparently the safety solenoid needed to be reset.  I did so and the hot water kicked right on.  At least I had a hot shower. 😉

Day 3 was just a straight shot up I-81 to I-66 then dealing with the traffic around DC.  Nothing important or interesting to relate, just a long but safe trip home. 

I parked the RV at the curb (I’m sure all the neighbors loved that).  We have plans to get it on the driveway later, but with a 15 degree slope, it ain’t gonna be easy.

Welcome to WeGoFar!

By , July 23, 2009 9:36 am

Welcome to our new home on the web!  We’ll be documenting our travels as we go, including how we manage everything, what we do to keep going and any “bumps in the road” we run into along the way.

To learn more about us, check the “About Us” link in the menu bar above.

We’ll be travelling around the country in a 30 foot RV, a 1999 Fleetwood Storm.  It seems pretty reliable and is mechanically in excellent shape.  It does need some “loving care”, but most of that is cosmetic or minor fixes.  As an example, I had to fix one of the leveling jacks yesterday and there are a few electrical switches that are “finicky” that I need to replace.  Nothing major, just wear-and-tear items you’d expect from a 10 year old vehicle (or house).

We’ll be spending some time cleaning up our current “root-based” life, which involves a lot of getting rid of stuff, arranging for care of our “regular” house, streamlining our schedules, alerting family and friends that we’ll be paying them a visit and determining where we’re going.

We also have some customization that we want to do to the RV, so we’ll be posting about that as we go.

Welcome and thanks for joining us!  Expect more as we prepare. 🙂

Panorama Theme by Themocracy