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RE: Height of class C?

Our 10 foot tall garage door has a "working" opening of 9'-11-1/4". That height restriction limited me to a select few rigs. At one point I was thinking of buying a used conventional class-C and replace the a/c unit with a sky light. We were fortunate to find OUR RIG HERE that is 9'-10" to the top of the a/c unit, fortunately true to spec. Here is the clearance. https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/50878550996_7841ddb795_z.jpg width=640 Inside the garage, I have a 2" thick Styrofoam block on the cement wall that I bump into, place in neutral, then let off on the pressure, to assure the rig is parked as far forward as possible. Look close at the ceiling of the garage. I had to reconstruct the soffit above the a/c unit. There is a heat duct and steel beam up there of which I got as much clearance as possible without sacrifice to insulation and soffit integrity. https://live.staticflickr.com/6172/6173443001_62ac4d1db9_z.jpg width=640 If you have a similar situation and are considering a shorter lighter-weighted rig, I advise to either go with an E350 (which is 3" lower than an E450), or get the E450 and plan on removing a few leaf springs in back. Because the front of our rig is so light, I was able to change front coil springs to better match my actual load. Doing so lowered the front by 1-1/4" which leveled our rig better, but the primary reason for doing so was to make the ride up front more comfortable, both for us and our house. CLICK HERE if you want to read more about it. Pictures are included.
ron.dittmer 03/04/21 09:54pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Removing seat and bench in Thor Majestic 23A

About the bench seat. Could you remove the cushions and build-up from there? You could cut a rectangular hole in the front of the bench and add a nice big access door. If done right, your modification will still assist with getting up into the over-head bed. Maybe you could include a grab handle.....maybe a good place for a TV?
ron.dittmer 03/03/21 04:17pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Replacing Ford drivers seat........

VA-Apraisr, You would be very surprised how easy it is to work on your seat. They are assembled in "kit" fashion. If the issue of concern is a crushed supporting cushion, you can add batting material purchased from places like walmart, but certainly from a fabric store. Remove the base seat skin, place multiple layers of batting, put the cover back on but not attaching it just yet. Then stuff more bulk batting wherever it is needed to fill in places that are lacking. Once it looks well filled, attach the perimeter and you are finished. If the problem is concerning your seat base outer skin, fabric, vinyl, or leather, you'll need the manufacture of the seat and contact them for a new base skin. It won't be Ford but an RV seat supplier. Of coarse the end result will not look great because everything else will show their wear a lot worse after having a brand new driver seat base skin.
ron.dittmer 03/01/21 04:02pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Planning to Flat Tow

There is one thing people do not mention, nor have I. Our rig has a short 158" wheel base with a long rear overhang. This can create a condition when towing that everyone should check after initial setup. Drive out to a large parking lot and make a very sharp turn in each direction, done slowly with another person outside spotting you. Some tow vehicles are styled with a more blunt front bumper that just might make contact with your motor home under sharp-turn conditions. If you find this an issue, or are simply uncomfortable with the close-call, add an extension. If you need a riser to level the tow bar, that accomplishes the same thing. The extra length moves the tow vehicle farther from the motor home. You need to know what you have just in-case you get the idea of trying to back-up while in a sharp turn. You might make body damage.
ron.dittmer 02/24/21 12:23pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Class C Aluminum Wheels

I think Alcoa does make an alloy inner wheel for the rear now. Used to be that you retained the steel rim on the inner rear. There are three part numbers, rear inner is not polished at all, outer rear is polished on the dished side, and the fronts are polished on the "bulged side". You cannot put the wheels in different positions due to the lack of polish on the inner side of whichever wheel it is, and the fact that the inner side gets marks, impressions and rust stains, etc, from the hubs. CharlesI understand that if you install that inner Alcoa wheel, you will also need to replace all your rear wheel studs because they are too short to accommodate the extra thickness of two alloy wheels.
ron.dittmer 02/23/21 07:32am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Class C Aluminum Wheels

Our rig has steel wheels with stainless steel wheel simulators. When replacing the tires this spring, I am considering buying Alcoa wheels with the Dura-Bright finish from THIS RETAILER. So I am interested in hearing about issues.
ron.dittmer 02/21/21 06:17am Class C Motorhomes
Be Thankful Your Ford V10 Is The 2-Valve Version

If you own a Ford E350 or E450 with the Triton V10 or the smaller Triton V8 engine, you have the 2-valve version that offers less horse power than the 3-valve version. You have 2-valves because the 3-valve version is too large to physically fit in the van's engine compartment. I was thinking of buying a used Ford F150 4x4 pick-up truck, a 2006 with 105,000 miles which had the 3-valve 5.4L-V8 Triton engine. I got on an F150 forum and asked a general question on what to inspect for, and I got a boat load of information, specifically concerning the engine. I also have a long time friend who has worked for decades as a tech for an area Ford dealership. His advise was plain and simple. Do NOT buy a Ford pickup truck with a 3-valve Triton engine. If you are tech-savy and enjoy a "good watch" on engine stuff, the two videos in reply #7 in my posting question HERE are fascinating. The videos point out clear evidence that the engine heads get damaged over the miles due to oil starvation that first shows up on the right head. The problem is accelerated when people don't change the oil frequently enough to prevent engine sludge formation. What I took from this is a warning to us here is to change your oil every 5000 miles. Don't go longer. Better to be safe than sorry. Going longer will build up engine sludge. Some of the oil passages on the 3-valve engine (and maybe also on our 2-valve versions) are smaller than usual and they clog very easy. So changing your oil at 5000 mile intervals will prevent sludge build-up and keep those tiny oil passages clear of obstruction.
ron.dittmer 02/16/21 07:25am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Thor quality complaint

I think that guy thought Mercedes supplied the front seats. He does not realize the chassis is delivered to the motor home manufacture with only a cheap plastic cafeteria style driver seat for lot-driving. That seat goes into the dumpster during the build.
ron.dittmer 02/11/21 08:18pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Thor quality complaint

.......until the middle of 2020 when, suddenly, the synthetic leather on the fold out couch began to massively flake exposing the woven under fabric. It is apparently a very low quality product. The paper thin leather-like covering is failing all over the couch.Your complaint is very common across many motor home manufactures. The problem is a byproduct of the great recession of 2008/2009/2010. Though the seats continue to be manufactured in the USA, the vinyl fabric in rolls has since been purchased from China. When RV manufactures learned of the problem, the lower-end manufactures no longer offered vinyl, the higher-end brands switched to top grain leather to resolve the problem, but people with the problem are left very unhappy because the RV warranty is long expired. A few people replaced the vinyl with leather, some replace the entire seats, and some just throw a blanket over the ugly. One thing certain, it's a problem that originates in China and people like yourself are left to deal with it at your own expense. If you plan to keep your rig a very long time, I would find out who supplied the seats to Thor and see if they can sell you real leather (or cloth) equivalent skins. Then either replace the skins yourself or get an upholstery shop involved. For reference, our rig was built just prior to the great recession in the spring of 2007. We have vinyl seats that remain in perfect condition. But people who bought the same rig some years later, seemingly starting model year 2010, they are terribly disappointed like you are. Buy the same rig within the past 3 years or so and they are real leather. A cloth interior also avoids the problem. Re-skinning with cloth would obviously be more affordable.
ron.dittmer 02/11/21 11:11am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Planning to Flat Tow

It helps for the rv and toad to be on level ground and in-line straight to hitch/unhitch. I like both my bars to click and lock when I hitch up. Most people get by just having one bar lock and the other falls into place when you start to drive. If that's the case, you need to turn the toad steering wheel slightly towards the unlocked bar, as you pull the rv forward that unlocked bar will lock into place as soon as you pull forward.I agree that it is ideal to be on level ground and everything in good alignment straight forward. I keep the tow bar in it's adjustable telescopic state as my wife drives our tow vehicle to the hook-up area. I then simply drop/attach the tow bar to the tow vehicle and signal her to back up until the tow bar "clicks" forcing her to stop. Most often just one of the two extensions "click" which is fine. I proceed to complete the balance of hook-up apparatus while my wife in the Jeep puts the transfer case in neutral, transmission in park, removes the smart key, inserts a dummy key to one click (to unlock the steering column), and she is done. I double check her work as she inspects mine. When in a hurry under time constraint, we can unhook and have my wife drive away in the tow vehicle in less than 45 seconds. A hurried hook-up is done in less than 4 minutes. To speed up the entire process, I use exceptionally strong locks instead of Quick-Links for the tow cables, and smaller locks in instead of Linchpins for the tow bar. All locks are keyed alike for convenience. Using locks also deters tampering and theft.
ron.dittmer 02/10/21 01:06pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Planning to Flat Tow

You Folks are Great. This is just the information I am looking for. I found an interesting Reference article at Motorhome.com /Dinghy towing guides. It lists many autos from 2000 to the present, if they can be towed and restrictions for towing them. Like starting the car every 500 miles and such.Vehicles with unique "500 mile starting" requirements, have the drive shaft spinning inside the automatic transmission while being towed. A vehicle that is a true 4x4 (not simply 4 wheel drive or all wheel drive) will have an additional transfer case that resembles an ultra-basic manual transmission found on an old lawn tractor. If such a vehicle has push-button selection into 2wd, 4x4high, 4x4low, & neutral, and can remain in neutral when the vehicle is turned off, then all such strange requirements of 500 mile startups and such goes away because the drive shaft does not spin inside the automatic transmission during towing. Manual transmission vehicles most often have relaxed towing restrictions because there is no harm allowing the driveshaft spin inside the transmission. The thick gear oil is not pressurized and circulated like an automatic. It gets lubricated without the need to spin the input shaft on the engine side like an automatic.
ron.dittmer 02/10/21 08:46am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Planning to Flat Tow

Hi docsouce, Here is my experience towing a 2006 Jeep Liberty 4x4 with automatic transmission. Being now more "vintage" in years, it has the older manually operated 4x4 transfer case which I really like. Unlike the pushbutton convenience of current day 4x4s, I operate the transfer case with a lever to select 2wd, 4x4-high, 4x4-low, and neutral. Once hitched up, wired up, and ready to be towed, I place the 4x4 transfer case in neutral. This allows the entire drive train to spin from the tires to the transfer case, but not forward of it. The automatic transmission remains motionless in "park" while being towed. This assures it is protected. I had chosen a "Unified" braking system which works very well, better than most others because it keeps the power brake booster charged for power-assist, and the system is seamless to manage during trips. But installation does require skill. I installed our Unified and lighting, but it is my forte'. I only wish the Unified was smarter to brake according to the amount of motor home braking rather than being a system that "brakes" the same amount, regardless of how gentle I am braking the motor home. I can adjust sensitivity when the Unified is activated which helps. I did a quick search on the Unified tow brake and wonder if it is no longer offered. We use a Roadmaster Falcon-II tow bar which works well. For ease of operation during trips, I keep the towing setup and tear-down process as simple as possible by leaving the apparatus on the RV like this. The two iron pieces that remain on the Jeep are quickly removed by "rotation & pull-out", so nothing remains on the Jeep when we drive it, just like when we are back home. https://live.staticflickr.com/2624/3744784614_6afef096ea_z.jpg width=640 Here is our setup. Note the offset hitch riser used to level the tow bar. https://live.staticflickr.com/2885/9398957260_f31c2c27f1_z.jpg width=640 Our first trip towing, I did not use an offset hitch riser so the tow bar was set at an angle. This was horrible because the tow vehicle "bucked" badly with every minor bump in the road. Leveling the tow bar is "key" for a smooth and comfortable towing experience. https://live.staticflickr.com/5541/9398970458_9cdb11b392_z.jpg width=640
ron.dittmer 02/09/21 11:08pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: 6 liter V8 Chevy Vortec question

Many years ago, I got into comparing the specs of the Ford E350/E450 and the Chevy 3500/4500 chassis. Comparing frames of the E350 to the E450, the gauge thickness of the E450 frame it a tab bit thicker than the E350 but is otherwise dimensionally identical. At a glance, you don't see a difference, but you can measure the difference with a calipers. I recall the frame of the Chevy/GM is dimensionally smaller than the Ford, and it is significant. I don't know if GM uses a different type of steel to achieve it's GVWR, but I always wondered about the stability of it's physically smaller frame. Given everything else identical, a physically bigger frame would have less frame twist over uneven surfaces. Less twist means the house is better protected from seams breaching.
ron.dittmer 02/09/21 07:13am Class C Motorhomes
RE: How to get an RV up a steep drive way

This picture shows our situation, but it does not capture how extreme the angle is. https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/50878550996_7841ddb795_z.jpg width=640 The guy who graded and poured our concrete driveway actually followed my instruction to start out easy and gradually increase the angle instead of having an abrupt angle. That was completed 3 years prior to buying our rig. By shear luck, we don't scrape when fully loaded including our tow vehicle attached, but it does get close. I recently purchased these rollers but have not yet installed them. I wonder if the rollers will make contact. I will find out soon enough. https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/50792971966_c0106c9fd8_z.jpg width=640
ron.dittmer 02/07/21 06:32pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: It fits....

My first bike was a 1983 Honda CX650 (bought used in 1984) My second bike was a 1984 Honda Magna V65 (bought in 2000) At age 63, I doubt I would get back into biking, but such a trike (with 2 front tires) would make the most sense at such a time in life. Thank You Desert Captain for sharing your new experience. I look forward to reading more.
ron.dittmer 02/07/21 06:20pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Review on the new 7.3 Ford V*

How much difference in mpgs or handling between a B+ aero front end and a C with the overhead bed? Does anyone have any data on this? I think it is logical to believe a B+ is better but how much better. The trade off is more room vs better mpg. If only 1 mpg I would choose more space. If the difference was 4mpgs 10 vs 14 mpg I might choose the B+.That is a very good question. I have no supporting data, only my gut feeling based on reading years of comments from other people regarding their own fuel economy. Comparing our aerodynamic rig to a typical class C of the same length with bad aerodynamics, the difference is not more than 20%. But there are just too many factors to state a reliable figure. Like others mentioned, aerodynamics are more critical if you cruise at 70 mph versus 60 mph. Some people live close to terrain. We drive across the Great plains under better mpg conditions, factors like that. There are unrelated benefits to having a seamless B+ cap, primarily avoiding the resonation of the over-hang which encourages seams to leak on a class-C as it ages.
ron.dittmer 02/07/21 07:16am Class C Motorhomes
RE: It fits....

VERY nice tricycle! I know exactly what you mean about sight-seeing in national parks in the "OPEN". We never did the "motorcycle" route, rather the "2-seat convertible" route. We towed a 2000 MR2 Spyder m/t for two years. What a joy to sight-see with the top down. It was a very easy tow vehicle. We had to give it up because we found ourselves taking it on 4x4 trails through dry river washes and such to get to trail heads. During our second trip, we made the decision to replace it with a 4x4. The defining moment was when we parked with nothing but Jeep Wranglers at a trail head....the looks we got were priceless. Here was our MR2 in tow. https://live.staticflickr.com/4160/34202273876_17c74d0181_z.jpg width=640 We own a 2007 Saturn Sky m/t today. The gears in my head are turning thinking just maybe.....take it on trips where we won't be doing off-roading. Blue-Ox makes a setup for it's sister the Pontiac Solstice. It would be an experiment to say the least. https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/50720751723_b20727bd59_z.jpg width=640
ron.dittmer 02/07/21 06:51am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Class C Motorhome With My Wishlist

Hi 2 Beagles Joe, Assuming you want a walk-around queen bed in a rear bedroom, the short answer is "rare pickings". The shortest conventional design I have seen is over 28 feet, and that was in old rigs not made in a while. There are a rare few current-day exceptions which are uniquely designed. - a rear slide out where the queen bed folds up inside it like the Jayco Melbourne 24K - a murphy queen bed in the living room, but I did not find with the overhead cab bed (a conventional class C) - as others mentioned, the Jayco Melbourne24L with an unusual full wall slideout Some of the other things on your list will be dropped as well, but the primary cause will be your rear bedroom walk-around queen bed. Everyone is sharing longer class C rigs which will nicely fulfill your list. Being that you require both a large cab-over bed and queen bed, it seems you need to accommodate a family. I always thought the COACHMAN FREELANDER 21QB was ideal for a family of 4 or 5. It is 24 feet long with lots of outdoor storage for children's bulky toys. It is surely a compromise to your list of requirements, but your length is where you want to be. You can also add a flip-up countertop extension like we have to the left of the kitchen sink to address that short coming. The Freelander series is also very affordable compared to most others. Keep in-mind the quality of a Freelander isn't the greatest so plan on maintaining the house more diligently.
ron.dittmer 02/05/21 05:53am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Review on the new 7.3 Ford V*

I'd say it's more about the wind resistance than the weight of your RV that affects mileage....I agree that the aerodynamics of the rig will influence the fuel economy. I am no expert, but I feel it could be nearly as influential as the over-all weight. Some motor homes are flat-faced compared to others built on the same chassis. Then there is the size of the face. Some rigs are taller and wider than others. Given equal weight and identical chassis, a worse-case versus best-case scenario, you would see a change in fuel economy. How much? Who knows. But based on numbers shared over the years, I estimate a 10% difference. A class C (B+) a best case scenario with aerodynamic cap, angled transition walls, narrow body, and lower roof. https://live.staticflickr.com/2432/3743989153_b6411a139a_z.jpg width=640 I wish I could find a better worst case scenario, but here is something. https://images.proxibid.com/AuctionImages/7349/151947/FullSize/25.jpg width=640
ron.dittmer 02/04/21 10:29am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Television Reception in an RV

Any idea what the range is of the King Jack antenna? I had thought of rigging THIS 80 mile range antenna onto the Wingard mast of our motor home but unlike the one on the top of my brick and mortar house, this one appears to be fragile. https://images.monoprice.com/productlargeimages/241721.jpg width=500
ron.dittmer 02/01/21 11:02am Class C Motorhomes
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