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Everything posted by docj

  1. docj

    New to Medicare

    In addition under Plans F and G a doctor can bill up to, I think, 110% of the Medicare allowance and still have his charges covered.
  2. docj

    New to Medicare

    But they may or may not be available in your domicile state.
  3. If you are like many RVers, you like to stream video but you hate to use up your cellular data plan doing it. Most people know that Netflix allows you to adjust your data usage in return for somewhat lowered resolution, but, to my knowledge, none of the other streaming services do. So, you end up with a quandary, if you have a really good cellular connection you can easily use >2GB/hour while streaming which can seriously use up your data budget. For example, at my TX home base, my Verizon connection is so good (>15Mbps) that I get a great picture at the cost of a lot of data.Well, your WiFiRanger has the ability to help resolve this problem by its capability of creating "rules" that govern the performance of specific devices on your network when connected to specific internet connections. For example, I usually stream video using a Roku. I have created rules for my Ranger which limit the download speed for just the Roku when the Ranger is connected to either my Verizon or AT&T cellular internet connections. Sure, this reduction in download speed does somewhat reduce the resolution, but, quite honestly, most of what we watch doesn't lose anything in 720p vs 1080p and much of it is just as good in 480i (SD) when upconverted and displayed on our Samsung HDTV. Personally, I'd rather watch a slightly grainier picture and have enough data for the month.For those of you who aren't technically savvy, the major streaming services all vary the resolution of the video you watch to match your download speed. So if you use the Ranger to reduce your download speed, the streaming service (with the help of your Roku or Firestick, etc) reduces the resolution of your picture. Obviously, if you restrict the download speed too much you will eventually get a very grainy picture or even will force it to rebuffer, but short of that limit you do have quite a bit of flexibility.What I've done with my Ranger is to use 4Mbps as the download speed limit in my rules and that appears to take my picture to ~720p under most conditions. This appears to restrict my data usage to <1.5GB/hr. That's low enough for me to manage my data budget, but I plan adjusting it some more to see how little I can get away with and still have a decent picture. The exact number will depend on which streaming service you are using since their capabilities for dynamic resolution changes is different from one to the other.To set up a rule on your Ranger, go to the Setup tab in the Ranger's control panel and under System Preferences make sure that you have turned off the button that says "Turn Off Advanced Features". Next, go to the Usage Tab and turn on Usage Tracking. Near the bottom of that page there is a section on Device Restrictions which will be blank. This is where your rules will go.To Add a New Restriction first you need to specify which internet connection you wish to restrict it on. Most likely that will be your cellular connection. Next select your streaming device such as your Roku, unless you want the rule to apply to all devices. If you aren't sure which IP address is your streaming device you will need to go to the Status Tab to identify (and relabel) it. Next you will be asked to specify the kind of limit to be imposed--choose download speed. Then you will be asked to specify the data limit, both upload and download which you wish to impose. The upload limit is irrelevant for streaming. Then you will be asked if you want the limit to apply all the time or only if certain conditions apply. I have mine on all the time. Lastly, save your rule by using the SAVE button at the bottom of the Usage Tab or it won't be implemented.I know this may sound complicated, but it's pretty self-explanatory when you step through it. Furthermore, you can always "erase" your rule with a single keystroke so you aren't doing anything irreversible. Vary the download speed contained in your rule to achieve a compromise of data usage and video resolution that suits you.
  4. Thanks for the nice plug, Smitty! I have to say I think we've come a long way over the >7 years I've been associated with the company.
  5. docj

    New to Medicare

    I never said it didn't. What I said that you have to have a Supplemental that provides international. I didn't suggest in any way which plans do and don't provide coverage. We have a Plan F, also, and we are well aware that it provides this benefit. According to Medicare.com: Standard Medigap Plans C, D, F, G, M, and N provide foreign travel emergency health care coverage when you travel outside the U.S. That is not the entirety of all Medigap plans, which is precisely why I said that only "selected plans" provide this coverage.
  6. docj

    New to Medicare

    With all due respect, I believe that all standard Medigap supplemental plans are national. The plans that are regionally based, are the Medicare Advantage Plans which combine your Supplemental and Part D payments into a combined plan which is managed like a PPO/HMO. It's more difficult for full-timers to use an Advantage Plan unless they intend to stay in the plan's geographic area much of the year. It's worth noting that if you want any coverage outside of the US I believe you have to buy one of a selected set of Supplemental Plans. They don't provide a lot of coverage, but they do offer $50k of emergency treatment coverage which probably would be enough to get you back to the US. FWIW lots of folks on this forum subscribe to Supplemental Plans F or G. They pay pretty much everything that Medicare A and B don't pay. I've had a Plan F for 6 years and haven't paid a dime other than my premiums. The only difference between the two is that Plan F includes the Medicare Part B deductible whereas Plan G doesn't. I believe F is being phased out unless you already have it so you may have to sign up for G.
  7. I get the 771 error if I have programmed to record a local channel when I'm outside the spot beam for that channel. Tonight I got it when a thunderstorm rolled through and the programmed HD channel couldn't be received. One way to get rid of the 771 notification if you can't figure out the reason is to engage PIP (picture in picture) and set both pictures to active channels you can receive. Then turn off PIP and go back to watching what you want.
  8. For the second time in a week, I can't sit outside my MH tonight because my new neighbor is idling his DP long, long after he finished hooking up his utilities. I really wish that people who buy a MH would learn something about using it properly. Both Cummins and CAT make it clear that by the time you've pulled off the highway your engine has already cooled enough to the point where you can safely turn it off. Continuing to idle it doesn't make things any better and, in fact, extended slow idling of diesels isn't good for them (that's why they have fast idle settings, but the same uniformed owners probably don't know they have that either!) Sorry for the rant, but DP owners get enough of a bad rap for driving such "expensive" machines (regardless of how old they are) that they don't need additional criticism for something avoidable like excessive idling. Does anyone want to bet how long my neighbor will let his diesel idle before he leaves?
  9. FWIW, here's a document that covers starting and warming up diesel engines in conditions that most of us hope to never encounter 😎 Caterpillar Cold Weather Engine Recommendations
  10. I never said that the diesel noise was the issue. It is the diesel exhaust that isn't pleasant to breathe for an extended period of time. In hot weather, most MH owners travel with their generators running so their house A/C's can operate. The dash air is an incidental supplement to the house A/C's, mostly to keep the driver cool during the trip. I don't RV for the purpose of meeting people at RV parks. I'm friendly to those I meet, but IMO it's a lot like living in an apartment complex. Be polite and don't make trouble for your neighbors. I realize there are some RVers who seem to delight in meeting people but not everyone does.
  11. My coach makes it easy for me. Slides are to be extended first and the ignition must be OFF. I've never checked the battery voltage after extending our large slide since I don't care--we almost always have an electrical hookup for recharging the batteries. The amount of energy used for deploying the slides is minimal compared to the total energy contained in 4-six volt batteries. As for leveling, the ignition must be on but, since the engine is already off because that's what was necessary for the slides, there's no reason to turn it back on just for the jacks. I dump the air then turn the ignition on to deploy the levelers.
  12. In the nearly eight years that we've been full-timing the proliferation of information on the internet has been enormous. Lots of information is available from reputable sources on virtually any topic. A couple of Google searches is all it takes to find the answer to almost any question. I prefer to get my answers from "primary sources" rather than from discussion groups or campground conversation; that's why I posted the link to the Caterpillar document. That's something I can trust; not so with something I read in a discussion group or hear from someone at a campground.
  13. If yours is like most MH's one or both of these functions requires the ignition to be on, but I doubt either one necessitates the engine running. Didn't you turn off the engine when you went into the office to register? If so why does it need to at your site once you get to your site? This link points to a CAT paper on reducing idle time to save money. Notice the comments about engine shutdown--"Limit idle time at shutoff. Older engines need 2 minutes, newer engines 
almost none." Costs of excess idling
  14. Quite a few of us on this forum drive large MH's and/or HDT's and I'm sure everyone tries to stay cognizant of which roads are more suitable than others for vehicles of that size. I just came across a useful tool to aid in analyzing proposed routes, the online CA maps of which routes in the State are restricted for buses and RV's greater than 40' and which are considered acceptable for vehicles of that class. Our MH is only 40' but with a towed car we're over 60' long. The one time I happened on a road that had the 30-foot kingpin restriction (which is equivalent to <40' only) I didn't find it to be such a pleasant experience, so having an easy reference of these routes I think will be a significant stress reliever. You might think I'm a wuss but my attitude is to avoid stressful driving whenever possible! πŸ˜€ The maps are located here: 45' Bus & Motorhome Map for Approved & Restricted Routes
  15. Quite honestly, I'm past the point of caring about educating people I am unlikely to encounter again. Life is too short to get into discussions with people who are no doubt convinced that what they are doing is correct because their sister's boyfriend's brother heard it from a guy who used to work at a garage somewhere! 😁
  16. His slides and jacks, hoses and power cord have been out for ~20 minutes at this point.
  17. docj

    Diesel locations

    I use the Trucker Path app for Android. It displays nearly every fueling location with pumps for truck diesel. Although I usually check them out with Google satellite and ground level view, I've never found a place with the app that I couldn't get in and out of fairly easily. In addition to fueling stops the app also shows rest stops which is quite handy, also.
  18. I guess they sit in front of it and watch the clothes go around! 😁 Our routine is exactly what you described.
  19. docj

    CA restricted routes maps

    Some, if not all, of these are included in the Mountain West Directory which I didn't mention because I know that lots of forum members are aware of it. Mountain Directories
  20. X2! Wouldn't consider not having one.
  21. Although we did spend a couple of nights in SD just so we could get our licenses renewed, I will admit that I know that some people [with anti-social tendencies] circumvent this requirement by making hotel (or campground) reservations that they intentionally don't show up for. Then they ask the hotel to send them a receipt for the night they paid for but weren't there for. It's not strictly legal, but it's difficult for authorities to detect.
  22. docj

    RF Mogul vs. Travl'r

    We've had our Trav'ler for just under 8 years and it has performed without any problems. The folks who like to promote RFMogul ding the Trav'ler because it has to be returned for service rather than being able to have parts sent to them for repair. After this many years of trouble-free service I'd just have a new one installed rather than repair my old one. Another ding I've read about is that the Winegard doesn't depress low enough to allow for effective use in northern latitudes; all I know is that we've used ours at multiple locations in Canada and haven't had any issues seeing the satellites.The long path through the atmosphere at those latitudes can degrade the signal, but pointing in the correct direction hasn't been a problem.
  23. docj

    Drop KOA Value club Membership

    These days KOA has split itself into three subgroups of parks---Journey, Holiday and Resort. Pricing for each tier is different as are the amenities. Most of the KOA's we have stayed at are the Journey type and we've always felt their prices were fair, particularly when one takes into account the 10% savings for having a KOA card. Furthermore, each year we get at least a couple of free nights by using our "reward points."
  24. docj

    Florida Drivers License address and Real ID Act

    Our PMB address in SD is the address the licensing people would use if they needed to send me something. But pretty much everything I need from them is available online.
  25. I'm glad things worked out for you. Happy to have been of assistance. Joel (AKA docj)