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 > Your search for posts made by 'mr_andyj' found 130 matches.

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RE: How long do you drive/tow in a day?

It is whatever you can do. Different each day. Biggie is I like to be in the bed by 11pm. Otherwise if you stay up too late driving then that ruins the next day, u either dont get enough sleep or you sleep late so lose any time gains you made driving late. However, with cities and traffic you might need to keep driving to get past a city so you drive through at night rather than at rush hour the next morning. Timing can be a big factor depending where you are. Dallas/Ft Worth is one I like to get thru at night, and the NE esp NY city is great to pass thru at 2 or 3 am. My record is 20 hours. 12-14 hrs is common when I'm going across. 6am to 11pm is my range, and I like to take a 30 min siesta in the middle of the day. Drive, and when you feel sleepy that is your cue to stop. Driving sleepy is like being drunk. Not worth it. For me the hours of when I normally go to bed is when I get sleepy, before or after that I am fine. I dont try to drug myself up to stay awake, I just go all natural and let my body dictate rather than caffiene late at night...
mr_andyj 03/08/21 08:26am Travel Trailers
RE: New outside shower mod

wow. I feel dumb for not thinking of it myself. I like it bc it gets ride of the hose. I have the threaded hose type, but the threads point straight out. Imma have to go tinker with mine now...
mr_andyj 03/03/21 08:46pm Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Drilling holes in trailer roof to install solar: worth it?

I advise strongly against those flexible panels. Get aluminum frame glass panels. The flexible panels have a shorter warranty period for one. Flexing can break things inside, so flex it once and never again. Putting those directly to the roof means a lot of heat builds up under them, enough to "burn" the roof (get it hot enough to discolor the roof), and heat will damage the panels (degrade them over time). Panels need air under them. You can certainly use portable panels, but since you have all that roof space just install on the roof. Solar will keep your batteries always correctly charged/topped off so that is a huge plus also.
mr_andyj 03/03/21 08:43pm Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Drilling holes in trailer roof to install solar: worth it?

Called 3M VHB tape. Very High Bond. Make sure to get a thicker version as it comes in different thicknesses. The thickness is like padding, and thick padding will conform to uneven surfaces better. 2mm should be plenty. Similar to "double sided sticky tape" but VHB tape is much much much stronger of a bond. As mentioned above... with rubber roff you will have to drill. Just make sure the screws going through the roof are accessible (not hidden under the panel) so you can re-do the decor lap sealant every year or two. Otherwise tape on brackets with 3M VHB tape. I bought some aluminum angle iron from hardware store and used that as the mounting bracket, you can buy special brackets too. For my last project I only had the brackets at the short sides, taped to the roof and I used two self-taping screws at each end to attach the panels (put one screw in on each side before taping so you don't put the brackets too far or too close together.) The tape hold incredibly. Mine was on metal roof, and fiberglass roof and also a rubber-painted aluminum roof. I have never screwed into a roof (I have never had a rubber membrane roof either tho).
mr_andyj 03/03/21 08:40pm Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Dicor lap sealant or Eternabond tape for new roof vent

Lap sealant! hands down, Lap sealant!!! I have used both, and both are excellent, and the tape is incredible in its holding ability. I have used both for enough years that I have had to remove both many times. The tape is a nightmare to remove, requires a heat gun, and always leaves a residue or "stain" of stuff that is hard to get off. Sometimes it comes off clean for a few inches, then other times it sticks as a mess. Lap sealant comes off with a scraper or putty knife. Leveling lap sealant flows into all the nooks and is much better sealing odd shapes where the tape will never seal. Tape only seals flat surfaces, where two surfaces meet (like the vent flashing) you will need a bit of lap sealant to keep tape from leaking. Tape should only be considered when you need that extra strong bond. IF you can make lap sealant work then use lap sealant.
mr_andyj 03/03/21 08:30pm General RVing Issues
RE: How often do your remove the camper from the truck?

I had two TCs. A pop up and a hard side fiberglass. I used both for work. I would use them weeks at a time, be home a week or two then head back out. It is a big enough pain that when home only one week I would leave it on. Two weeks and then just depends on how much driving I planned to do between (usually I was tired of driving so avoided it when home). It is simple in theory, but does take time. It can be a chore. Tailgate needs to come off and go somewhere safe, don't drop it, its heavy but easily manageable. The camper is always sitting on something (X's, saw horses, pallets) so raise camper, remove platform, store platform/move platform. Prep truck, which for me involved the batteries that stayed in the truck bed, the electrical connection, putting boards in the bed, the rubber mat all just so. Back truck in most of the way, connect the things, back in the rest of the way. Some ppl are good enough they get it perfect the first time, prepare to do a few back-n-forths to get TC centered where u want it. Lower TC. I had remote motors but it still was a chore. I had air bags, so air up the air bags to get truck level again. Lug out the Troqlift tie-down arms, the chains and hook it all up, tighten down the tie-downs. Fill water if you prefer to drain out water for storage to make TC lighter and not stress the floor (depends on quality of your TC). Dont forget that license plate move. Hook up trailer wires to TC, check, Two mirrors out.. Good to go. Yea, it is a bit of work. I got rid of TC. Now I have trailer: Back truck up, drop it on the ball, clip the chains in and the 7-pin. Done. Be sure this is what you want. The Pop-up is neat, but unless it is an Alaskan you are in a tent when the top is up, all the noises and lack of insulation as a tent. Lack of security of a hard wall (not that campers are hard to break into). The hard side is nice too, heavy, and lot of weight on your expensive truck with expensive front end parts - as opposed to super cheap easy-to-fix trailer axle and leaf springs. Your truck is going to carry the burden and weight and get worn out faster.... Keep all this in mind...
mr_andyj 03/03/21 08:23pm Truck Campers
RE: Electrical Extension Cords

Depends really on your load. Will you run AirCon and Electric water heater and Electric fridge all at the same time when on the extension cord? If yes, then 10 or 12g cord. the shorter the better. Running AirCon on a 14g cord (small wire) will certainly work, but can put a strain on the aircon motor when the cord gets hot, it will, and the amps start to drop, even cold the cord will struggle to supply the needed amps. The AC will try to run off of what it has, but all I say is, research this topic. That said, I do run the AC on a regular cord sometimes (not with other high draw things at the same time though), and have not killed anything.... yet... I do have a 10g cord, but the camper is plugged into regular ex cord, prob 14g so I have power if I need it, and if I want AC on a hot day while Im out there will run it off little cord... Your AC unit will not be drawing 30 amps. The 30amp number comes from combining AC, fridge and water heater, plus other, though smaller, loads. You can look up what the AC draws running (not start-up).
mr_andyj 03/03/21 08:07pm Travel Trailers
RE: Inverter Install?

Hard to follow your OP question. Yes, if your inverter is connected to the battery (properly - pos and neg in the right spot) AND you turn the inverter on then the female inverter outlet should be giving 120 volts, as you confirmed by plugging a light directly into the inverter. If the inverter is wired into the same wires as the outside connection to shore-power then the inverter should power up your entire panel and all the outlets in the camper, including fridge and Air Cond. Inv will not run the AirCon, if Air Con is trying to come on then that is the first issue and could be shutting down the inverter, same for the fridge electric setting, same if you have a 2-way boiler set on electric. There should not be anything else hard-wired in that would make a big draw. Re-confirm that the inverter is providing power as you could have blown a DC fuse that the inverter has on the backside. Is there a reset switch on the inverter (built in circuit breaker)? If you are handy with wiring you can wire it so you are not having to flip switches and remember what is plugged in and worry if the dogleg thing is going to back-feed your inverter and blow it out... On my first rig I had shore power, generator and inverter all powering the camper. Shore and gen went into the breaker box and that powered A/C, Fridge and Charger, and boiler. There was an A-B switch that only let one power source power the breaker box (gen or shorepower). When I added the inverter all I was going to power was the outlets, not anything hard-wired into the camper, so made it easy. I used a toggle switch of proper amperage to select power from the breaker box or power from the inverter. I put this switch in-line with the wire coming out of the breaker box that fed the outlets. This isolated the inverter from the breaker box (a/c, fridge, charger, boiler), and let me power the outlets. This made it impossible for the inverter to back-feed the breaker box or the generator or shore-line city power, which means the inverter would net get fed shore or generator power either. I wired the toggle switch from the "hot" wires so was choosing hot from either inverter or the panel. The ground and other wire, which was grounded, was shared. Hope this helps you or anyone
mr_andyj 02/23/21 10:56am Tech Issues
RE: Using RV generator as backup for house?

I live , as the wire flies, about a mile from the electric grid sub-station, and that might be why the power rarely if ever goes out at my house, so unless a tree falls in that one mile distance then power is always up... Easiest is to run some extension cords. Safest is to run some extension cords. Best is to have electrician install an cut-off switch and a small panel box to power up just the things that you need (blower, fridge, a few lights), but that gets really expensive unless your brother in law is an electrician and willing to work for free. Beware, it is possible to "backfeed" the house by running your generator into an outlet, but the DANGER is over-loading that wiring from that outlet to the panel and causing a fire. You can turn off all the circuit breakers except that outlet and the blower motor and maybe be OK, but what else is on that outlet's breaker? I know what I am doing and would never backfeed an outlet just because of the risk of making a mistake. If you are able to do home electric work yourself, has anyone run a completely separate and new electrical system? An outside way to plug to the generator, and a small panel and run wire to one or two places (the furnace and fridge) so you can unplug them from the house and plug them into the generator house outlets... This is easier than dragging out electric cords in the dark in a rainstorm or snowstorm... My furnace is new, it is 120 and wired into an outlet box. It would be nothing to make that a 3-prong plug that plugs into that outlet instead, then I could plug the furnace (blower motor) into the generator much easier. Gas is almost always on, I never iin my life have had gas not flow, but in TX they did as crews were digging and ruptured gas lines, so all of this blower set-up would be useless if that were to happen...
mr_andyj 02/23/21 10:30am Tech Issues
RE: Harbor Freight Tailgator generator review

friend has one and uses for power outages... 2 stroke motor needs 2 stroke mix. For $90 it is hard to beat. He uses it all night and day to power refrigerator. More than $90 of food in fridge so it pays for itself with one long power outage. I do not think this is an inverter gen, so power output is rpm related, so not for every appliance. Friges might not care. This is a great gen to have for emergency, but not for regular camping since a nice inverter gen is only $600 or so
mr_andyj 02/05/21 09:28am General RVing Issues
RE: Roadside Breakdown

Really depends on the tow truck driver or the tow company. Yes, a truck and TC will fit on a flatbed, yes, it is high, no, it is no big deal. I had a Class-C that got pulled by a 1-ton regular tow truck. We rode in the cab with the two driver, and left people in the camper (officially driver did not know about them, but he knew). The front wheels of the tow truck would come off the ground when we hit bumps, but we made it off interstate and to a shop. We got lucky to get a nutty driver that time. Other times drivers refused to tow. I had giant 4x4 truck with TC and got towed on a flatbed, but waited days for the tow truck to show up. Do't tell them "truck with truck camper", just tell them big motorhome, and avoid the confusion. Tow companies hear "truck" and then stop listening, and send a 1-ton then get there and realize, no, it is a camper basically. or Just ask for a big flatbed and tell them "it needs a flatbed" but dont try to explain, or they will not listen and/or get confused and second guess you and send a 1-ton again. I had same truck towing a camper and got a flatbed and he went out and bought a 2 inch ball and towed truck on flatbed and towed trailer. I have since woke up and sold the Ram, junky Dodge truck with a great Cummins engine, but junky truck and trans.
mr_andyj 02/05/21 09:15am Truck Campers
RE: Anti-sway Bar

Answer is NO. We can close topic. Trailers do not need sway control unless they are wiliey, and a new one should be fine, esp unloaded. If they are towing professionally then they likely have a big truck, 3/4 or 1 ton and it is heavy enough to not be swayed much anyway. I have had WD hitch, but never ever used a sway control, never needed it on several trailers I have owned. I have towed trucks on a dolly backwards and had sway issues, but this can be overcome or corrected with driving techniques.
mr_andyj 02/01/21 11:19am Tech Issues
RE: Calling on Solar Techies

Yes, pure SIN wave inverter. No reason to not get this, and some items will be ruined from a modified sin wave inv. 1500/3000 at minimum. Keep in mind that smaller inverters draw less phantom power than big ones, so getting a huge one and having a lot of extra capacity is not ideal. Size it for what you need, or get a 300 watt inv and a 4,000 watt inv and use the one u need. For me a 300 pure s w i is all I need or running laptop charger or other small things. You are in a camper. Yes, electric appliances and devices are clean and easy to use. Campers run off of propane. Do as much propane as you can. Propane furnace heater (the blower motor will still draw a lot of watts, but not as much as an all-electric heater), or a Buddy heater (which puts a lot of moisture into the room), stove-top coffee maker (see espresso pot) or pour hot water over a filter attachment. an electric TV is fine as it will not draw a huge amt of power, as long as you dont binge watch tv. Keep in mind, with solar you want to do electric things (charging phones/devices, tv etc) during the early sunny part of the day so you can use the sun and not the battery, and so your battery has time to recharge before sunset. A small electric coffee maker in the morning prob not a big power draw, but only if there is enough charge left in the batteries after running TV at night, furnace fan at night, charging phones at night... because you have all day to re-charge the batteries Get the picture? Night is not solar's friend. An electric stover-top (those new induction ones) might be fine if you use it not-very-often as you say, and if rarely used does make more sense if you have the power to run it. Marine batts can be run down about 200 times, real deep cycle about 1,500-2,000 times, a car starting battery about 2 times. Even so, every time you have an electric draw you are running down your batteries, so running it down 1% 100 times is similar to running it 100% once. (thats not the exact math but gives u an idea that you dont have to run it down to shorten the life of a batt, you just need to run is down any amount, and those amts add up). Get a good charge controller. MPPT or PWM. I prefer MPPT. You dont need a $500 one, you should be able to ebay it for $50-$80. Solar is great. Get real glass panels, never the "flexible ones" as they are only good for when you absolutly have to have a bended one. Run the solar in as higher voltage and let the controller drop the voltage. Higher voltage 36 volts or more is more efficient over the copper wire than lower 18 volts. You can use less wire, and smaller wire this way. controller goes as close to battery as possible.
mr_andyj 01/17/21 09:37am Tech Issues
RE: Cab over Camper shell?

I have seen one. It was a fiberglass (like a boat hull construction), similar to a topper, but tal enough to stand in, and had a cab over, yet the sides were the same width as the truck. Gel coat exterior like a topper too. It was brand new and still smelled of the epoxy bc it was one day old, and the owners slept in it that night. They probably are dead by now from the carcenogins. The interior looked like a topper with the rough sprayed-in fiberglass strands. They intended to build it out also. It attached same as a topper and maybe had the truck bed fully exposed, but not sure about that. I cannot remember the brand, but just to tell you it does exist. I saw it in NC, so wherever they got it was in NC or very close. This was 5 yrs ago probably. They were super excited about it and mpg was better than a TC. Likely it could have been one of these as posted above https://www.fleetwest.net/product/335/
mr_andyj 01/17/21 09:20am Truck Campers
RE: East Coast Road Trip????? Pandemic?

The SE is not locked down and imprision'ed. Walmart is a big corp and given free reign to be open with 1,000's roaming the isles and touching everything, while smaller business with much less traffic and better sanitation are often closed. I have not heard of any walmart not allowing overnight parking due to a virus. SE resturants are open, but they just sit at every other table. People wear mask a lot but otherwise life goes on normally. Be advised that some national forest "primitive camping" or "roadside camping" is not allowed and somehow this is to help prevent someone catching a virus. You can shop walmart, touch things in a store, but can't go out in the middle of nowhere and isolate yourself from the general population and camp for days. dim logic does not make sense but that is who we are now
mr_andyj 01/17/21 09:14am General RVing Issues
RE: TCs and Covid Vaccinations

Wait as long as possible. Wait, wait, wait!!!! !!!! There are better cures on the way we are told. Wait. Too many deaths and illness already associated with the vax that CDC tells us will not protect us from the virus anyway. WAIT !!!! !!!!
mr_andyj 01/15/21 05:01pm Truck Campers
RE: Battery life, fridge only

One Marine battery is weaker than a real Deep Cycle battery. Get rid of a Marine battery next time, anyone, any reader who has one. Uselss. Solar really is the key. You can do a very simple solar system where you deploy a panel outside in the sun and plug it in to camper, or put a permanent one on the roof and have it always able to charge. For you it sounds like 100 watts is enough, but is so cheap, go for at least 200 watts of solar, then you need a charge controller (mttp or pwm) and then just wires. Youre looking at about $200-250 on ebay for this, give or take. Just to keep batt running a fridge you can use a plug-in 50 watt portable panel. A portable is useful also to keep your vehicle topped off.
mr_andyj 01/04/21 09:21pm Travel Trailers
RE: Solar Questions

Your transfer switch is so the inverter and the generator are not feeding at the same time? You can let solar always charge, even when the battery charger is charging.
mr_andyj 01/04/21 09:11pm Tech Issues
RE: Looking for portable electric space heater for rv!

WAY PAST TIME TO CLOSE THIS TOPIC. You close good topics bc you disagree, but leave useless ones like this up? The guy is asking about a store-bought space heater for goodness sake, CLOSE the topic!
mr_andyj 01/02/21 03:57pm General RVing Issues
RE: Murphy Bed Option

I don't understand how this is a question even. It folds as fast as you can move your arm up or down almost... You can fold it up as you are raising your arms up for that morning yawn. I don't have to walk around a giant bed during the day. The only drawback is I like to leave the bed down so the bedding can dry before folding it up, so I leave it down a few minutes. (your body loses water as you sleep but that water vapor ads very little dampness to the sheets.) On mine I can actually fold it and have it a few inches open so air can still circulate but it is just as out of the way. There is a hook for travel that closes it all the way too. When ready for bed I drop the bed down, which takes about 3 seconds. Murphy bed allows you to tow a smaller trailer but have more room than a bigger trailer with a fixed bed. I am all in for the Muphy bed.
mr_andyj 12/31/20 09:49pm Travel Trailers
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