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About s106300

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    Senior Member
  • Birthday 10/19/1952

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    Full time RVers
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    just about everything

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  1. Just got into Dawson City, Yukon after spending six weeks in AK. Met up with Janet and Raymond Church in Valdez, AK. Good times. Bad weather and mostly challenging roads. Low marks for Tok Cut-off and Tok to Chicken roads. Chicken to Dawson City not so bad. All doable; just got to go slow! And have a sense of humor.
  2. Thanks Ronbo - helpful. We also have the Direc Link Controller which has remained on the original setting. Just got a crash course in trailer brake maintenance. Heavy equipment shop in Soldotna, AK looking at it now; probably will have to order parts and getting them here will be an issue no doubt. At least it is a nice place to be "stuck".
  3. DH talked to DRV this morning and their consensus was that the Kodak brakes only last 15 to 18K miles. We are 21K lbs. Dave, I don't think Ron was aware that he had to check the gain; not being used to a fifth wheel I think he was assuming brake longevity was akin to that of a car. DRV said they are actually a GM product off of a Buick Century.
  4. Anyone else have issues with the brakes on their 2016 Elite Suites 38RSSA manufactured in the months PRIOR to the official recall? Brakes started acting up and upon inspection, DH determined linings are thin and calipers are damaged. Only 17K miles on the coach.similar experiences out there?
  5. Ron and Shelley Johnston of THOR and the Adventurers arrived in Tok, Alaska today for a one night stay at Sourdough Campground. We took the ferry from Bellingham, WA and arrived three days later in Haines, AK. We hit the highway, crossed into Yukon Territory for three days, and crossed back into Alaska today. Easy-Peasy border crossings both times but of course we had prepared for being boarded so no fresh anything and no dairy or eggs. Went out tonight to Fast Eddy'srestaurant and had a great meal of halibut and salmon. You never saw two people devour their fresh salads with such gusto, lol! Also I thelocal super market - Three Bears - that had awesome fruit and produce. Yummmmm!
  6. Thanks - we will check out MASA and SkyMed immediately. Sigh, what happen to all that "spontaneity" that was mentioned in the "Full Timer's Brochure" I am sure I read somewhere ....
  7. Just the carpet treads need replacing - we had a clogged toilet (human error, don't ask) and while the repair guy was carrying out the toilet he spilled sewer water all over the carpets. They were showing the wear anyway, so I decided to replace them. Guess I will have to call DRV. Strange that no one seems to make them for RVs in anything that will work for us. Carpet treads in our unit are 8"D by 25" wide. No David - the stairs are always accessible, even when slides are in.
  8. Kathy and Jim - since it was a car salesman, there was probably at least some smoke blowing. Be that as it may, it does appear it is a seller's market on the 2017. Our order is being processed as we speak, and I can tell you it was quite an effort to get the build slot. If your guy has one I would jump on it now. Flapper - there is indeed a huge difference worth paying for on the 2016 and 2017 models over and above 2015 and earlier models. You sound like you got a great deal on yours - our 2012 was around $9K (no trade in) and had about 17K miles. It is a SMART For 2 Pure/Passion and did not have anything over standard amenities (including no cruise control) but was otherwise in pristine condition. We now have $31K miles on it and other than routine maintenance, we have had to replace a blower fan for the air conditioner (expensive because they had to take the whole car apart to get to it, naturally) and we have now replaced all four tires. Other than that it has been a champ. BUT - rough ride, very unstable in wind and even the slightest snow, slow to get to full power, noisy, and did I mention no cruise control (and very difficult to maintain speed). No complaints on handling and performance in general but drove the 2016 model while fan was being repaired (300+ miles worth because of course the nearest dealer was 140 miles from where we were staying) and we both agreed it was 500% better all around. According to Jack Mayer in his video, they pretty much rebuilt the entire car.
  9. s106300

    Ferry to Alaska

    We have just booked a trip from Bellingham, WA to Haines, AK via the Alaska Ferry. First, your length, height, and width are important. The limit is 70 feet long - we came in at 69 feet - 65 feet nose to tail on the rig plus 4 feet of bike rack, but then we are an HDT - Volvo 670 RV Hauler modified by Gregg Shields to carry our SMART car and a DRV RSSA38 Elite Suites (38'11" by itself when uncoupled). We were slipped into the "wide" category due to the SMART length. Second, we would have gone to Whittier (that is the 6 day trip) but they were already booked up through July. We booked for Haines with a departure of May 19. There is no electricity on board the storage deck, so if you go to Whittier, yes, you should clean out the refrigerator.They will turn off your propane and seal it; you cannot even bring more than two of the portable gas bottles; those have to be declared and submitted for storage. You will NOT be able to fire up your generator. If you have pets, it is $40 per pet and you must have a health certificate that has been issued within 30 days of departure.Pets must stay in your rig; no pets allowed in passenger areas. You will be able to gain access 3 times daily for 15 minutes and you must be escorted. You can also visit your animals in port. Remember that you will have no hot water and all of your slides have to go in, so plan your pet care accordingly. Sleeping berths fill up fast - you need to book well in advance. Our passage rate to Whittier $8,485.25 - that breaks down to $454 for me, $418 for DH with senior discount (65+), $120 for three cats, $5,589 for "1 high double unit" (truck and trailer plus bike rack), and $507 for a one 2-berth for two with full facilities (that means bunk beds with toilet, sink, and shower, linens provided). Do not expect glam! If you are going to Whittier or Homer, you will pay substantially more. A lot of the price has to do with the size of your rig. You can go on-line and do a pretend booking if your length is 30 feet or less (not sure that counts a tow vehicle or toad). Good luck, and do check all the regulations relative to guns, alcohol, and any driving violations or criminal convictions, even if a zillion years ago, well in advance of booking.
  10. We want a newer car - 2016 or 2017. We were not able to find a 2016 in the right configuation or range of colors so decided to go to a 2017 build order. The difference in driving the 2016 forward vehicles is HUGE. Jack Mayer did a video that is on Gregg Shield's website (RVHaulers.CA) - very informative. We actually had an opportunity to drive a 2016 Prime for about 300 miles - the difference between that and our 2012 Passion was night and day. Amazing improvements.
  11. DH had to have double bypass surgery in June 2016 and has been tap-dancing ever since with heart failure, erratic heart beats, low BP, and some as yet unspecified kidney damage. Adjustments to medications have resolved many issues, but he is more vulnerable to critical issues coming up in the future. We are leaving for Alaska and Canada for about three months with a drop down for the eclipse in ID and then a return to Anacortes, WA for some oral surgery procedures for DW from Sep through Oct. We would like to get some emergency medical evacuation insurance for someone with pre-existing conditions. Any suggestions?
  12. We have a DRV 2016 Elite Suites RSSA with two indoor stairs - I am looking for replacements for the carpet stair treads So far I have not found much on line. Any recommended sources?
  13. Although our DRV38RSSA Elite Suites has had many quality control issues, comfort has not been among them. We have a cheap heat system so heat mostly with electricity - turn down to 65 at night; generally 70 during day. We have 3 cats so generally keep around 68 even when not here. Have spent winter in Anacortes, WA and have gone through an unusually cold winter - many days in low 20s and 30s with up to 10 degree drop at night. No issues. We do not use our fireplace for heat because supposedly it draws heat from basement when tank heaters are on. We do not use space heaters. We DO have an electric mattress pad for our king sized bed (get them at Walmart - they are awesome!). Our electric bill in the coldest months was around $220. We have only changed our 40 lb propane tank twice since November; but I have not been cooking as much due to our on-going medical appointment schedules and frequent family meals with kids and grandkids.
  14. LOL, in this case I am counting on all those younger HDTers who will be coming up behind us and don't want a short range electric model. And then there is always Jay Leno
  15. Thanks for the inputs. We have actually talked to a couple of dealers ourselves - SLC and Seattle. Neither had what we wanted on the lot - pretty much all Primes are gone, 2016 and of course not much happening on 2016. We could have gotten Passion, Brabus, or Cabrolet (sp?) but did not want those models. Getting the build spot has taken several weeks and a call to SMART USA headquarters. Dealer said it was the build aspect that made it non-negotiable. He is looking at the trade in now (Loki the first, 2012 Smart for Two) so we are hoping he is generous. He was quick to point out that 2017 Primes are now "rare" and prices will go up (I am sure he is correct) so we are probably just victims of timing. Ron & Shelley
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