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RE: Tires - The 10 Year Rule

"So your codes showed 5.5 years at the time of the incident? Or...? " Yes, the three oldest were all 5.5 years old with 4/32" of tread and looked fine and all three were on the rear. I normally start shopping at five years but as noted, my bad, just lost track of how old they were getting. When I buy new tires I always have them put on the front and rotate the fronts to the rear. As noted in a subsequent post losing a rear is bad but a blowout on one of the fronts has a lot more potential for disaster. :C Roger that. I didn't realize you had already been on a 5 year maximum plan. I thought you started that subsequent to your incident. Seems like you're giving yourself a pretty good beating when most don't replace tires earlier than 6 or 7 years... and many go to 10... and some even longer. If anything, a blowout at 5 1/2 years would make me question the tire quality much more than my change-out plan. One salient fact that I inadvertently omitted was that I consistently put 8 to 9,000 miles a year on our coach. That means at 5 years I have 40,000+ miles on those tires and it is clearly time to start shopping for replacements. As noted above folks that don't use their rigs much, that spend most of their time sitting only exacerbate the potential for catastrophic tire failure {such as I experienced} due to the the low use tires "drying out"{for lack of a better description}. I have always been a Michelin guy and while they are a bit more money tires are simply not where I want to be thrifty. My tires have always worn evenly and gotten me 40,000 mile {+/-} with a quality ride and handling. My coach has not been aligned since it left the factory in 2012,{that is the last stop on the Nexus production line} but now after 69K+ miles I am seeing a slight bit of outside edge wear on the front right. I'll be taking it in soon to have the alignment checked and adjusted as necessary. IMHO: if you consistently get 40k miles out of a set of motorhome tires on a coach that is used on a regular basis you're doing more right than wrong. The original point being that RV tires are far more likely to time out than wear out regardless of they "look". As always... Opinions and YMMV. :C
Desert Captain 09/25/21 09:48am Class A Motorhomes
RE: Tires - The 10 Year Rule

"So your codes showed 5.5 years at the time of the incident? Or...? " Yes, the three oldest were all 5.5 years old with 4/32" of tread and looked fine and all three were on the rear. I normally start shopping at five years but as noted, my bad, just lost track of how old they were getting. When I buy new tires I always have them put on the front and rotate the fronts to the rear. As noted in a subsequent post losing a rear is bad but a blowout on one of the fronts has a lot more potential for disaster. :C
Desert Captain 09/24/21 01:34pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: Manufacture vs Dealership

There are obviously pros and cons to buying direct vs dealerships. I bought our Nexus used {with just 6,205 miles} from a large dealership but was an eyelash away from buying the exact same coach factory direct from Nexus until I scored our used coach. I had spent several weeks researching and negotiating the custom build but upon finding the exact same coach in "as new" condition for thousands less the decision was a no brainier. Buying factory direct works best for experienced RV'ers. First time buyers won't have a clue what features to look for which negates the best single reason for buying from the manufacturer that being the ability to get your coach custom built/equipped for your specific needs. In 2013 when we bought our 2012 Phantom 23P Nexus was still factory direct only. Buying new would have necessitated two trips from Tucson to the factory in Elkhart, the first to tour and evaluate their facility and confirm their ability to produce the quality product I was seeking. The second would have been to pick up the unit after completing a thorough PDI and test drive before returning to Arizona. I had made a tentative offer of $63,000 for the custom build with the two trips to Elkhart adding 3 to $5K in additional costs. We bought our coach at La Mesa RV in Tucson for $47,000 {$50K OTD}. Over the next few years Nexus began to create a limited dealer network and to the best of my knowledge continues to offer both purchase options. On a cross country trip I had the opportunity to visit their factory twice for modifications and minor repairs. We toured their factory and were nothing but impressed. We spent 4 nights with hookups on the factory grounds for free and were treated like royalty despite not having bought from Nexus and our coach being out of the original warranty. After 9+ years and 69,000+ trouble free miles if I was in the market for another coach I would definitely put Nexus near the top of my short list of manufacturers to consider. As always... Opinions and YMMV. :C
Desert Captain 09/24/21 09:42am General RVing Issues
RE: Tires - The 10 Year Rule

Desert Captain, Did your insurance cover a large percentage of that damage?" Yes, Geico was awesome. The adjuster came out and guesstimated the damage to the coach at around $1,000. He wrote me a check on the spot to pay for the blown tire {$250} and gave me choices as to where to take the rig for repairs. After their initial inspection the dealers service department uncovered a great deal of additional damage which bumped the repair costs up to $4,181. Geico immediately authorized that amount, less my $500 deductible and in 10 days I had the coach back, good as new. The blowout and two other tires were all about 5.5 years old and I had Discount inspect and air up all 6 tires the day before our trip. They checked out fine with plenty of tread and no signs of any issues. We made it to our destination {about 100 miles} and on the return trip I went to the nearest Discount Tire store and replaced all three of the 5.5 year old tires, the other three being only a year old. It was my bad losing track of the older tires DOT codes. Admittedly Arizona is a tough environment on all tires but these had been meticulously maintained and always run at the correct psi for the loads they carried. Obviously opinions vary but IMHO if your tires are over 5 years old you are rolling the dice... place your bets. :S
Desert Captain 09/24/21 09:19am Class A Motorhomes
RE: Tires - The 10 Year Rule

My rig is just a smallish {24'} Class C but the blowout of a 5+ year old Michelin the day after being inspected and aired up for the load by Discount Tire did $4,181 in damage blowing the wheel well right up through the coach. Had it been a front wheel it could have easily killed us. I'll never own a tire older than 5 years again. My dear departed dad used to tell me "Son, any problem that can be solved by money is NOT a problem... If you have the money." Just saying. Good luck. :C
Desert Captain 09/23/21 09:12pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: I now hav e AC power in my driveway...

BC, sounds like it would be a hoot but my 2 wheel days have come and gone... sigh. Fortunately the Spyder keeps me smiling and my bride loves the ride as much as she did the Springfield. :C
Desert Captain 09/23/21 09:04pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: I now hav e AC power in my driveway...

Phil, earlier you asked about an RV mechanic and I missed responding. On top off all the other good things Payson has provided a great independent mechanic. Carl is an RV expert and will come to our house. I had him replace our old {original} water heater and troubleshoot some electrical issues I was having with one of my LED tail/brake light clusters all right in our driveway. He is ASE certified and has a complete shop on his property about 5 miles up the road. I took the coach to him a couple of months ago and he went through it changing out the oil, trans and differential with full synthetic. He also did a coolant flush and a full fuel system flush/treatment and inspected it from top to bottom replacing the chassis battery with an AGM, all hoses and fittings were inspecte. I will have him replace the plugs at 75K miles... everything else is perfect. A couple of dealers quoted me $2,000+ for less work than Carl did and he did everything for $1,100. We now have 69K+ trouble free miles on our 2012 coach and it is nice to know everything is good to go. I found this pic that I took when Carl was replacing the water heater. It gives a good look at how Nexus builds their coaches. Note the Pex plumbing lines, electrical conduits and furnace ducting... all neatly run and secured. :C
Desert Captain 09/23/21 09:32am Class C Motorhomes
RE: I now hav e AC power in my driveway...

My bride {age 70} and I {currently 69 and closing in on 70} did it all ourselves. We are both in pretty good shape and having the tools, truck and trailer I am too cheap :R to pay anyone to do what we can do ourselves. The day will come when I start writing checks to have these sorts of things done but happily we aren't there yet. The last month or so I have been nearly flat on my back with multiple visits to 3 different ER's, surgery and a a couple of not fun serious medical procedures for a total of 11 days in pre or post op wards {on the bright side I did lose 13# but it is not a diet I can recommend}. :S After all of the rain from our awesome monsoon the weeds took over our entire property with me being out of action. They ranged from 3 to 5'+ tall and covered every inch of the .57 ac. As I recovered I did a little more every day and now have reclaimed the property but am still only about 75 percent. Yep, it is a B*@#& getting older but it sure beats the alternative. :B
Desert Captain 09/22/21 04:23pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: I now hav e AC power in my driveway...

Paradise in Payson update... Op here and next Wednesday will be our one year anniversary. As noted earlier in this thread we were busy from day one making this place our own. Since we were mostly hiding out in self imposed quarantine {could not get our Moderna vaccines until February/March} working on the property 7 days a week made the time fly by and we are seeing some serious improvements. After getting both driveways paved {80 yards of 12' wide} I waited 6 months and then had them heavily seal coated , they should be good to go for at least 5 years. The property had not been trimmed much less cleared {made firesafe} for more than 10 years according to our neighbors. In the last year we have made 26 trips to the land fill/brush pile usually filling both my 10' cargo trailer and the bed of my truck. We took 6,000# of just pine needles and oak leaves initially and followed up with a lot of serious tree trimming {we have 75 trees on .57 ac including 8 - 60'+ Ponderosa Pines, Oaks, Juniper and Manzanitas}. Last January the heavy wet snow, 2.5 feet in one storm, took down two of my Oaks and one Juniper and damaged 9 others. From that I harvested another full cord of hardwood which has now seasoned for 7 months and will be ready for splitting soon. We have a nice fire in the wood burning stove every night from mid October through mid March. The 38 year old kitchen got a complete makeover with walnut cabinets and granite countertops and we hope to redo both bathrooms soon. I expanded the concrete driveway 3' X 24' digging down 6" and framing it with 6" X 6" X 8' landscaper timbers. Filled that box with 3 tons of gravel and now can park the Coach 3' farther south reopening access to our attached garage. Brought in another 3 tons of large gravel and larger rocks to deal with some drainage issues. Put in a nice garden, had a 20 X20' area surrounded by 4' of chain link. Added 80' of Elk fence 7.5' tall to keep them and the deer out {we often have both grazing and or snoozing in our yard}. Planted two cherry trees, a dwarf Jonathan Apple and Bartlett pear then added two blackberry bushes along with two raspberry and they are all growing like weeds with the bushes already producing fruit. I have high hopes for the trees next spring. The monsoon was awesome this summer bringing us 8.5" in just over 6 weeks which put a pretty good dent in the drought. The realtors said we had a seasonal stream and it ran full often this summer but the truth is it's just a glorified drainage ditch. :B It took no time at all to acclimate to the small town lifestyle, folks are friendly and living at 5,000" is most agreeable. Life is good! :C
Desert Captain 09/22/21 02:44pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Tow hall mode

.... The other huge benefit to TH use on descents is that you are not burning a drop of fuel regardless of rpm. TH locks the the torque converter and shuts off the flow of fuel to the engine enhancing not only control but fuel efficiency as well. :C Tow/haul shuts off fuel flow? I've not heard that. I may be misunderstanding. I was referring to long descents, watch your real time mpg display when TH is engaged. Your mileage will pin at the max, 99 for most displays, as the engine is giving you lots of braking without burning any fuel. At the bottom of the grade when the engine braking ceases your real time mileage returns to reflect the fuel you are now burning. I have been down hundreds of long 6 to 8 percent grades from 6 to 12 miles} in Tow Haul and virtually never had to touch the brakes. I set my speed as is appropriate for the road/weather conditions and my fuel consumption is zip. IMHO: Pretty hard to come up with a legitimate reason not to use Tow haul. :C
Desert Captain 09/21/21 12:20pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: Broken black water valve

About 4 years ago I noticed a small crack in the grey tanks dump handle on our 24' Class C. It still worked but the coach was definitely giving me a warning/heads up. I went on line {Amazon } and ordered an entire new dump valve assembly {for both grey and black - if one is going bad rest assured the other will not be far behind} for about $100. I was able to do the replacement at home with all of my tools vs stuck somewhere on the road if I was even lucky enough to be able to acquire the requisite parts. There was more reaching under the side of the coach vs crawling under It took about an hour and half and was fairly easy to do, just reverse engineered the removal of the old valves. Now picture reaching for that valve and having it break off in my hand at a crowded dump station... :S Order the parts and do it yourself or ask a buddy if you have one with more expertise than you. As noted above look for any RV repair shop to be backed up weeks/months and about three times the cost of doing it yourself. Good luck. :C
Desert Captain 09/20/21 01:13pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: Spouse left behind after death at a Campsite, what to do?

While most of this thread has been about someone dying the situation need not be of a fatal nature to require some serious assistance. A simple fracture or other non life threatening injury/illness can easily render the primary driver incapable of getting the rig home. Also remember your pet{s} as most of us consider them family. Those who have family and or friends that can drop everything and arrive prepared and capable of driving what for many are very large rigs with toads and trailers are very fortunate. This is not the case for me and even if I had someone that is a very big "ask". For several years we have carried the Good Sam Trip interruption coverage {no, it is not insurance} but does provide for a professional to drive the rig home to include a spouse, kids and pets. There are a lot of other services folded in and the yearly cost is around $125 +/- or basically a nice steakhouse meal for two. Much like fire extinguishers, ERS and full coverage this plan is something I hope to never need but my bride and I sleep better knowing that it is in place. We came very close to needing it last month... I was recovering from a kidney stone and while on the mend I elected to cancel an upcoming 3 day trip to a remote CG about 80 miles from home. On what would have been our first night in camp I was struck down with serious liver - gaul bladder failures and after being rushed to the local ER spent the next 7 days hospitalized going through gaul bladder removal surgery and several other serious medical procedures {don't ask}. Between the kidney stone and the subsequent, albeit unrelated medical disasters the running total from the VA is now well north of $100,000. We would have had our 24' Class C, 10' cargo trailer and Can Am Spyder to get home none of which my bride could have handled alone. There is no one I could have called {not that I was in any shape to do so} and we would have relied on the Trip Interruption coverage. Just sayin... :C
Desert Captain 09/18/21 01:05pm General RVing Issues
RE: Tow hall mode

TH does far more than merely adjust your shift points. Unless your coach is small and lightly loaded, towing nothing, using Tow Haul all of the time is a good way to go. On a long flat/slight downhill stretch obviously disengaging TH is fine as well. The sheer weight of most motorhomes over 24' provide more than enough load for the advantages of TH to far out weigh minimal {if any} decrease in mpg. On occasion I have simply forgotten to engage TH. This bit of foolishness on my part is quickly exposed when I glance at my Scan Gauge on even a slight grade and note the trans fluid temps climbing 12 - 15 degrees. An "Oops' followed by reengaging TH generates an almost immediate drop in trans fluid temps back to normal... :S Following a rig on a long mountain descent it becomes immediately apparent if they are not using TH as they are constantly on their brakes often arrive at the bottom of the grade with significantly reduced braking capability due to their overheating. The other huge benefit to TH use on descents is that you are not burning a drop of fuel regardless of rpm. TH locks the the torque converter and shuts off the flow of fuel to the engine enhancing not only control but fuel efficiency as well. :C
Desert Captain 09/17/21 10:32am Class A Motorhomes
RE: Black Eye

Based on responses from this thread, we can see why there is no firm pull over, don't impede traffic rule. It seems we all have a different approach / standard as to what s acceptable when it comes to a line of traffic behind you. Actually every state has laws against impeding the flow of traffic. Most state that anytime there are 5 or more vehicles {and yes the number varies from state to state} behind you pulling over at the first available turnout is mandatory with failure to do being grounds for an expensive ticket. Sadly LEO's are spread pretty thin and enforcement is spotty at best. Additionally any LEO can and will cite you if you are in any way impeding the normal flow of traffic, their call. Just sayin... :C
Desert Captain 09/17/21 10:17am General RVing Issues
RE: Extended Warranty: Why do I need it?

I agree with what's been posted so far. A couple more thoughts... If you get a warranty from the dealer you probably will have to bring it back to them and they know it. So what happens when you are hundreds of miles from home? Be self insuring, put the money the dealer wanted for the warranty into a financial product that permits easy access but grows {even a little helps}. Failing that set aside money every month as consistently as you can to cover any unforeseen repairs down the road. When you are self insured in this manner you get to decide who, when and where yourrig gets worked on and have the option to take it somewhere else if they can't or won't get er done in a timely manner. :C
Desert Captain 09/11/21 09:26am Beginning RVing
RE: What’s the normal CCC for a 30 ft. Class C?

A few more factors to consider... The larger the Class C the less, sometimes a lot less, CCC you will get. Options like slides and levelers draw heavily from the preexisting CCC. My 24' E-350 has over 3,000# and we often use most of that. The venerable E-450's usually have around 2,000# +/- which is fine for most folks. If you find one with 1,000# or less "Run Forrest run!" as you will quickly exceed it. As noted above watch your rear axle weights as they are often exceeded and creatively load, which can mitigate somewhat the CCC/rear axle shortcomings of the larger C's. If you can't run with a full water tank {assuming black and gray ere empty} without exceeding your CCC you probably bought the wrong coach. As always... Opinions and YMMV :C
Desert Captain 09/06/21 09:11am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Consider trip interruption coverage???

Others seem to be interested. Is there a reason you won't post the name of the coverage you have? Sometimes these threads drift a little sideways and to keep the focus on the issue vs brands I left off my choice. For the record I have Good Sam Travel Assist which I renewed last June for $100. I keep their contact info, policy # etc. in my phone so either my bride or can easily contact them. Sure hope I never need it but knowing it is in place is nice. :C
Desert Captain 09/03/21 11:57am General RVing Issues
RE: Consider trip interruption coverage???

Those little stones sure do hurt. Were they able to determine the likely cause? Probably 69 years of living well... there are some serious dietary adjustments currently being made. That and the worst luck of my life... sigh. Getting back to the original topic, Our rig, a 24' Class C, 10' cargo trailer and the bike probably are worth around $60,000 but everywhere you look are combos worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. I doubt that every spouse is capable of driving these large expensive combos even short distances {alone and under the stress of having their partners incapacitated} much less hundreds - thousands of miles. Knowing that professional help would be made available to get everything home is a serious comfort. Also I mentioned pets in the original post and while we no longer have our pooch she went on every trip with us for years. Seems like there are as many folks out there with multiple pets as just one or none and we all know they are family. When you spend a couple of weeks going through what I am now, thankfully crawling out of you have a lot of time to think about stuff like this sort of thing so sharing seemed timely based upon what almost became real world experience. Because it is rarely needed the cost for this coverage $100 +/- really isn't much vs the investment you have in your rig not mention the family side of the equation.... just sayin. :C
Desert Captain 09/03/21 10:33am General RVing Issues
Consider trip interruption coverage???

Several years ago I started carrying trip interruption coverage in addition to ERS and the usual full coverage. We were hauling my motorcycle on almost every trip and doing a lot of riding all over the west/southwest. While I did not anticipate an upcoming problem for around $100 a year it provided some comfort to my bride and I. Should we have a mishap on the bike just getting the coach and trailer home could be quite a challenge. The coverage deals with a number of other issues and happily we have never needed it. About 2 weeks ago we had reservations at Pinegrove {which are very hard to come by}, one of our favorite CG's located about 25 miles south of Flagstaff. Again we were taking the bike and were looking forward to this trip even more due to the unexpected kidney stone that rocked my world {and NOT in a good way} the week before our scheduled departure. After 4 days in the hospital I returned home and reluctantly canceled our Monday reservation on Saturday assuming that I still might not be up to the trip. This turned out to be a very good decision as Monday night I had to be rushed to the ER with serious Liver and Gaul Bladder issues. Long story short, I spent the next 8 days in two different hospitals, no longer have a Gaul Bladder or the errant stones that had escaped it. Had we gone to Pinegrove it would have turned into a serious 911 event with my bride, myself and our Class C, trailer and bike all 80 miles {which easily could have been hundreds or even thousands} from home. Had that occurred I would have been calling the trip interruption folks to get our rig and my bride back home. I won't name the coverage we have but based upon other reports believe they could/would have dealt with these issues. The key is contact them first before contracting with anyone to move the rig. It is not insurance per se but they will pay to get you, your family, the rig and even pets returned to your residence. I think we really dodged several large caliber bullets on this last incident, you can't imagine the pain involved and being medevaced out from an isolated CG certainly would have complicated things {vs being 2 miles from the local ER}. So now I ask: Do you have this coverage and have you ever needed it? What issues/problems {if any} did you encounter in using it? Will you continue to carry this coverage? I certainly will hoping that I will never need it {much like my fire extinguishers, EMS system and ERS}. :h
Desert Captain 09/02/21 09:47pm General RVing Issues
RE: A cautionary tale... Pack a "Go Bag"

In reading the OP, I'm wondering why the medically uninvolved partner couldn't make the 4 hour round trip to gather the needed clothing and meds? After 24 hours without her meds my bride was incapable of driving, not her strong suit in the best of times, especially in the insane traffic of downtown Phoenix. As far as the law enforcement community I'll deal with any unlikely intrusion/questions about the meds we are in possession of. Our prescriptions can be easily verified as we are not talking about recreational drugs.
Desert Captain 08/23/21 09:36am General RVing Issues
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