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About fpmtngal

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  1. Report back tomorrow, an interesting idea, I’ve never tried something like that. As a guess, you may be ok with the ones on the fume hood, but I suspect that the magnets aren’t strong enough for the oven door. But that’s a guess. I think the idea very cool if it works. I normally have less load shifting than some people I know. My initial towing experience was with a horse trailer many years ago. The horse I had didn’t balance all that well and he would scramble if I accelerated before the trailer was completely around the corner first, or I stopped a little quickly. I try to drive the same way towing my TT, everything should be done smoothly with nothing sudden as much as possible, slower acceleration than what I would normally do. Post the results of your magnetic experiment, I’m interested if it really works.
  2. There are lots of pros for having some sort of solar system. I added a system last year, after 2 years of not having anything, and I’m very glad I did, it’s changed my preferred method of camping and opened up lots of opportunities I didn’t have otherwise. Cons: it’s expensive and it’s a system so you need to consider batteries and what your power needs are going to be. It’s unnecessary if you only stay in campgrounds with power, stay a long way from anyone else and don’t mind listening to your generator while your batteries charge. A disadvantage for someone with a small trailer and a marginal TV is the added weight of any extra batteries and the panels themselves. I would guess that wouldn’t be an issue with a Class A, but don’t really know.
  3. Is there an easy way to find the annual fees for various parks? I started to look at a couple of park’s websites and found it frustrating to try to find out what they were. In addition, it seems that home parks fit into different categories (at least as far as I could tell with both C2C and RPI when I was looking through my friend’s books) so buying into one doesn’t necessarily give you the same access and features as another one. I found the differences in annual costs on either RPI or C2C sites, don’t remember which. I looked at several on-line resources (some resellers, a couple of individual membership parks as well as the websites for the various organizations like RPI, C2C, ROD, etc.) looking for the “fine print”, but either they gloss over some of it or else it appears complicated enough that my mind went into neutral. The various membership parks and their systems make successful timesharing (with all of the nuances that go with that) look simple.
  4. Thanks for starting this thread, I’m finding everyone’s opinions fascinating. If the house ever sells, I’m going to go full-time and have once again thought about membership campgrounds. I thought about and researched (briefly) the subject 4 years ago when I bought my RV initially, deciding it wouldn’t fit into my style of RVing. Now that I’ll be full-timing, I’m wondering if one would fit into my life better. I have two friends who own membership campgrounds, one owns at an ROD resort and the other a resort with membership to C2C and RPI, premium levels. That one prefers C2C with the ability to stay for free, rather than RPI, which they haven’t used much. And they are thinking of dropping out of it next year. So I thought the comment above about preferring RPI over C2C interesting, a different perspective. Love hearing everyone’s point of view, it really helps when it comes to making informed decisions.
  5. Sounds like the best reason of all! Have a great time, and I think your idea of moving to a second campground halfway through the week is a good idea, too (as well as not using and then using hookups). From what you posted, that’s what your primary purpose for the trip is anyway. A week isn’t long enough to experience the whole gamut of RV experiences possible, so you’ve done what you can - prioritize just what goals are your top priority and then figure out how to accomplish them. Unless you just have an itch to boondock somewhere for a night, I’d probably not bother. I don’t know that it would teach you anything you would not have already learned by dry camping. While I love boondocking out on BLM land, staying in a parking lot or truck stop somewhere isn’t my idea of fun. I’ve done it a few times and will most likely do it again if that’s how things work out, but it isn’t my first choice.
  6. That’s great news!!!!! Knees - know what you mean as my house is 2 story. Even though I’m no where near as far along as you are with the furniture, my knees have complained. You have my sympathy, but at least your only a few days away from giving them a proper break. 10x30 storage unit? You are keeping more stuff than I am, we have different long-term goals I think. But I’m wondering if the 10x10 unit I rented is going to be big enough. Every time I turn around I spot something I had planned on keeping that I had forgotten about when I looked at the unit. I’ve been packing stuff for the storage unit in plastic bins. I had bought them several years ago for temporary storage while I had hard wood floors installed. I kept them all, using some of them occasionally for some reason. Now I am very glad I did - they aren’t huge boxes so I can manage them by myself, and most importantly, I can see what’s inside them. I have been trying to pack with some sort of organization, and have been putting them in the storage unit with some sort of order in mind. Since my trailer is so small and winter clothes are so bulky, I packed most of my winter and dressier stuff up and put them in the storage unit in Vegas. I figure that when winter comes I’ll pack up my summer clothes and retrieve my winter sweaters. I’m going to keep one heavy jacket with me along with various lighter layers that can keep me comfortable through the fall and can be combined if it gets cold unexpectedly or before I pass through Vegas in the fall. My clear plastic containers came in handy this weekend when I took a partial load over and my sister had gotten me a ticket to see Frankie Valle in concert at the Smith Center. The shoes I wanted to wear were packed but I had no trouble spotting the container and retrieving them. I’m now convinced that my idea of how to pack and organize the unit is going to work. It sounds like you are at the point where you can unpack all of that stuff you have packed for full-time living, organize it and put it all away. I’m not really good at it, but life in a small trailer is so much better when everything has it’s “home” and is put away where it’s easily accessible or filling some far corner if it’s something you only need once in a while. It makes a huge difference! And it’s something that’s on my mind as the next indicated step for me. I’ve been using the trailer somewhat for staging stuff, but the house is now organized and much of the stuff for storage is already there or in a closet. I want to go through everything I have in my trailer (which is still somewhat packed from my last trip), re-organize and get rid of some stuff that I seem to have accumulated that are duplicates and decide what of the stuff I found in the house that “could be useful for camping” I really need. I’ve gone back and forth with what to take with me - thinking that I’ll need more stuff than what I’ve always carried before and then wondering why since I have been very comfortable in it for months at a time. Keep posting success stories and what you are doing, it helps keep me focused on my goal, and gives me ideas on how to get there.
  7. Sounds like you’ve got yourself well organized and I’m envious. My house hasn’t been shown since the open house the day the buyer officially cancelled. At least my septic tank and leach pit project is going along well and will hopefully be complete the very first part of July. If I still don’t have an offer by then, I think I’ll go to Idaho and western Montana until either I get another offer on the house or the end of the summer, whichever comes first. So everyone who’s on track or have already started down the full-time road, tell me about your positive experiences, let me enjoy it through your eyes. I want to be really envious of all of your good luck.
  8. Those are really cool trailers, I’ve met a couple of solos who are full-timing in them. Have a great time and safe travels!
  9. It occurred to me today as I was heading for Harbor Freight that I better not change my domicile until after the house sells for insurance reasons. My policy is based on the house being my residence. I’m very afraid my insurance would suddenly become a whole lot higher than it is now, if I could even get any, if the house were considered vacant. The reason the buyer backed out was that she couldn’t qualify for the loan with the $400/month insurance cost she was quoted. I’m paying about $200/month and sure don’t want anything to change that. The difference in my state income tax liability isn’t worth what I could potentially have to go through. Besides, going to Idaho and Montana for a couple of months sounds much better than Texas in July.
  10. The health insurance question depends on what type of policy she has and what her employer offers! Best to call her benefits people. In my case, I have Medicare and a PPO plan through my pension. I called my pension people yesterday to ask about my situation. Since my policy covers me just about anywhere (there’s fine print for international services), I don’t have to switch to their out-of-state program right now, BUT will at open enrollment. If I had a more restrictive HMO plan, I could switch over now even though it is not during open enrollment. I have also heard of people with retiree health plans that can’t be taken out of California, and there’s no option like mine for out of state residents. So you can’t depend on what others here have available. My buyers backed out, so my house is no longer in escrow. Much of my stuff is in Nevada or disposed of. I’m going to leave some of the furniture I want as staging for the house now that it’s back on the market, so some of my belongings will still be here until the house sells, but the house would be vacant. Not sure whether California would still consider me a resident for tax purposes. I’m still planning on leaving for somewhere in July, Texas if I can claim domicile right away, even though I still own the house. Otherwise, I’d more than likely head north to somewhere cooler.
  11. Not really practical. There’s 100 feet of concrete and retaining walls, it cost $10,000 to put in 3 years ago. Hopefully the inspector will give a green light to the leach pit, but it would still be cheaper to put the leach field in the back than it would to demo and replace the concrete driveway. My buyer backed out last night, so I’ve spent all afternoon unpacking books etc. that are still here (I took a load of containers to Vegas yesterday and rented a unit) so there’s something in the empty bookcases. My realtor is doing an open house tomorrow, piggybacking on another open house that the same office is doing on the same block as mine. Keeping my fingers crossed. Many of the people I camp with I’ve met at rallies put on by folks owning the same type of rig (manufacturer) as mine. They are all ages. You might see if there’s an owners forum for your rig and if there are any gatherings put on by other owners or the manufacturer. Last year I got talking to someone who was with a good-sized Grand Design Rally at Quartzsite, sounded fun and a bunch of useful classes. Next year I am planning on going to the Escapade in Wyoming, I’ve never been to one. It might be huge, but I’m sure I’ll have a great time meeting whoever is set up next to me. And I’d like to do the RV Boot Camp. Check out nearby Escapees chapters and BOF groups, too. There’s lots of articles on the Escapees website about domicile and residency. I’m still working on becoming a full-timer, so my knowledge is limited to the articles and what my tax accountant tells me. I still haven’t made up my mind about membership campgrounds and the organizations that they are associated with. So far my RVing has been as a traveler and didn’t feel my usage would be enough to make it worthwhile to buy into one. Ask me again in a year, then I might know if being a full-timer would change that. As far as discounts go, belonging to something like Passport America, Good Sam etc. can be good if you use them. I am probably going to use them a fair amount if the house sells quickly, less in the winter when I plan to boondock in Arizona and Nevada most of the time.
  12. Well, my deal might have hit a major snag - should have known because things were going along so well. Buyer loves the house, the list of repairs was really minor, biggest headache was going to be finding someone who could take care of some of them that are either beyond my reach with a 4 foot ladder or beyond my knowledge of how to do. Then came the septic tank certification process. First snag but one that is fixable is that the septic tank needs to be replaced, not an uncommon occurrence where I live. Then the water didn't flow into the leach field right. Gulp - the hose stopped at the middle of a concrete driveway, which more than likely means I've put concrete over the existing leach field. A whole lot of concrete. So on to Plan B - put in a new leach field. Only problem is that the next level spot in the yard is down a big slope and at the opposite end of the lot, plus there are trees that would need to be removed. Or if the county will approve it, put in a leach pit at the top of the lot near the septic tank. In any case, it's going to be very, very expensive. Not happy, but it just means I get less back to invest escrow closes. Before my realtor could tell the buyer's realtor about what was going on, she said that the buyer was balking at the $400/month she was quoted by State Farm for homeowner's insurance (I'm paying about half that with Progressive). I had warned her that insurance could be a problem up here and that it seemed like a lot of companies had raised/doubled their rates last year (my old insurance company pulled out completely). So now what? I would hope the buyer would not try to get her earnest money back because she "can't get insurance" when it's a matter that she can't or doesn't want to pay the premium. The earnest money will not cover the entire cost of fixing the septic system (which has been working for me as I'm gone so much - I had no idea there was a failure in the leach line), worst case it would cover about a third. That would mean I'm on the hook for a very, very large bill, regardless, if she backs out of the deal. Which would mean that I'd be out a whole bunch of money and still be stuck with a house I no longer want to live in, and I'd have to go through all the business of listing it and hoping it sells all over again. I don't think I can ask any more for the house than what I listed it for, even saying that it has a new septic system. I'm still going to move a Grand Cherokee full of stuff to Vegas tomorrow and rent a storage unit. I'm only taking off-season clothes and sentimental stuff, I can always retrieve it any time. I'm trying to remain hopeful that it will all work out in the end. I sure hope no one else is stuck in this situation!
  13. LOL! Sounds like a great idea to me, a couple of hours getting some practice driving/towing your new rig and driving through the pretty Tehachapi mountains, but then, what do I know? Seriously, if your dealer isn’t responsive, call Lance Service and see if you can’t get faster service through them. It probably is a quick fix, the issue is going to be finding out what’s wrong. I think it could have a couple of causes, but not being familiar with your model, I have no idea if they would be possible or likely.
  14. Thanks for the additional information about the drives, sounds like the barracuda is the right way for me to go, I’m not running any of my computer stuff 24-7, no need to, but will be traveling so robustness has higher priority for me. In fact, I might have saved myself lots of money, maybe. Apparently Harbor Freight has a case that’s a knock-off of one of the Pelican cases. I read a review of it by someone who shoots the same “other” brand of camera that I do and he seemed to be pretty impressed with it. It’s half the cost of the Pelican, so maybe a trip there would be in order (need to go to town for some other stuff anyway). I once ordered a lens from B&H, made by my camera’s manufacturer, that had a troubled reputation. I returned two of them before getting a refund. So it can happen, though that’s been the only time. The fact I’m still using 2 lenses I bought new in 1980 is more the norm.
  15. A solo traveler needs (different than wants) less storage space - fewer clothes for the most part. Perhaps smaller set of pots, pans, dishes, glassware and towels. Their bed configuration could be more flexible. The big thing is to define your needs. Full time vs part time. If part time, how long and far are you planning on? Someone who takes weekend and a week trip somewhere might have different needs than someone who takes multi-month trips of thousands of miles. Others brought up the fact that dry camping has different requirements than staying with full hookups. I’ve done both, my first 2 years were spent in at least power only sites as I didn’t have solar or a generator. I now have both. I noticed you did not include an option for a travel trailer. I’m curious why you ruled them out but have a 5er on your short list. There are advantages and disadvantages both ways, a travel trailer works very well for me, a 5er would require me to change how I do things, to adapt to its characteristics, and I don’t feel any need to do that right now.
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