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256  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Wipers on: April 04, 2014, 12:20:24 am
Nice!  Interesting that there are two individual blades (passenger and driver).  Makes sense. 

257  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Wipers on: April 03, 2014, 10:07:57 am
Ron: I had to smack my forehead when I read your recommendation for removing the blades.  So simple, free....and it will remind me to clean the blades since they will already be in my hand!

Holly:  If we enjoy this year on the road as much as we hope we will, we might be crazy enough to put ourselves in a position where our families say, "you're gonna do WHAT??"  We use Amazon wish lists too and have racked up a bunch of Camping World gift cards that way.  Funny you mention Cracker Barrel.  We don't have any around where we live and haven't been to but one, many years ago, but friends gave us a bunch of Cracker Barrel roadmaps to help plan out general routes for our trips and by the looks of it there must be as many Cracker Barrels as there are Starbucks out here.

Back to the subject of wipers though.  It's amazing that they haven't change much at all throughout the history of automobiles.  Such important pieces of gear, especially in the daily torrential hour-long downpours in places like Florida in the summer.  Looking at all the reviews, the Bosch and the RainX Latitude seem to top the popularity lists, along with the OEM varieties.

  - Mike
258  Main Forum / General Discussion / Rig baths on: April 03, 2014, 07:50:11 am
Our PC is stored out in the weather at a storage facility, and there are very few car/truck wash businesses around here that are set up to wash an RV.  Aside from using the Camping World 'spa treatment', how frequently does everyone run across places to wash their rigs on the road across the country?  Do many RV parks have facilities (and if so, do they have the required tools like brushes...or should I toss one in the rig)?

  - Mike
259  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Wipers on: April 03, 2014, 07:41:36 am
I was hoping someone here had tried the PIAA Super Silicone wiper blades.  They are apparently used extensively by autocross and off road racing teams, as well as trucking companies.  The blades are silicone and come with a silicone application package (sort of like a Rain-X application). They are very well reviewed, but pricey ($20-$30 each). The replacement blades are around $8.  Since friends and family seem to have a hard time finding birthday presents for me I think I'll put these on my wish list and give them a test run.

  - Mike
260  Main Forum / Tips and Tricks / Re: Dead battery salvation on: March 31, 2014, 11:28:27 am
I gotta remember that one, Bob!  It's one of those things I wouldn't think about when it actually happens!

- Mike
261  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Thermostat? on: March 30, 2014, 09:33:29 pm
Um....cabin fever, Tom??   chandelier
262  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Report on alignment and handling of our 2552 on: March 29, 2014, 01:31:03 pm
Ron:  I think it's a mix of many factors, a lot being subjective.  I was happily surprised by how well my 2552 handled when I received it (subjective).  It had a bit of 'play' or 'float' when steering, but given the size and weight of an RV as opposed to a truck or car I assumed this was normal and it didn't bother me all that much (subjective). If I had previous experience to draw upon and compare  I might have determined that the 'float' was normal, too much or outstanding.  After the addition of the steering/suspension upgrades there was marked improvement.  Definitely wanted the Safe-T-Plus in case of a blowout anyway.  I'm assuming if I also change to Bilstein shocks there will be an improvement.  Other upgrades could be positive, depending on how our 2552 is loaded, whether we choose to run with full or empty tanks, how many people we are carrying, types of roof mounted wind catchers we have installed, whether we are on California back roads or NY highways, etc.   I now think that the same model in different circumstances will handle a bit differently depending on how and where they are used.  But again, right out of the box (or factory) mine was easy and comfortable to drive.  As my local RV tech told me, there are many additions that he could install to make the ride more comfortable or responsive.....just depends on how much things bother you and how much you want to spend.   Do I really need the total body massage heated drivers seat with aromatherapy?  Hmmmm...probably!  Actually, the only thing I would probably add in the future is a remote controlled rear view camera so I could move it around from the drivers area and see either the hitch, tow car or left/right traffic back there.
263  Main Forum / Around the Campfire / Poor guy.... on: March 29, 2014, 11:34:01 am
Saw this bumper sticker yesterday and had to take pity on the poor guy....

"Shopping at Best Buy with your wife is like hunting with the Game Warden"
264  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Thermostat? on: March 29, 2014, 10:59:55 am
Oops....must have posted that about the same time as you.   Smile
265  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Thermostat? on: March 29, 2014, 10:58:33 am

Your system may actually be designed like that, and there may be a logical reason for it.

On my unit (a Coleman, not a Dometic) if the differential between the current room temperature and the thermostat setting is over 5 degrees, then both the heat strip and the furnace will come on until the differential falls to less than 5 degrees.  Then the furnace goes off but the heat strip stays on until the room temp matches the thermostat setting. I think this is similar to many other unit brands.  If your rig is at 70 degrees, try setting the thermostat to 72.  Chances are the heat strip will come on alone.  If you set the thermostat to 76 or greater chances are the heat strip and furnace will come on together.

You might not think the heat strip is working, because the air coming out doesn't feel hot.  Ours feels like this too, and we have a 6000 btu heat strip on ours (yours is a 5600 btu unit)  The difference between a small 1500w electric heater and the 1500w heat strip on the A/C unit is the volume of airflow, but they should put out the same btu's.  If you have the heat strip on and watch the thermostat for a few minutes, you should see the temp rising.  From what I understand the heat strip is generally not considered a primary heater, but only to give you a few degrees of take the chill off, so to speak.

When you think about it, running an electric heat strip off shore power rather than running the furnace off propane may save some money, and wear/tear on the furnace.

  - Mike
266  Main Forum / Around the Campfire / Re: Easy Breakfast Bake on: March 28, 2014, 09:50:10 pm
Awesome!  You made one of my favorite and easy dishes even easier!

Will be going on a very long (9000+ mile) trip this spring/summer, and will have a few tricks and tips to share regarding meals and treats I'm sure.

I'm already RV-thinking regarding preparation steps, portioning, freezing, and ease of clean up for all sorts of things.  Lots of great resources online, including you, the PC forum in general and all the assorted RV bloggers out there.

Looking forward to all the local produce, meat, fish and sundries along the way across the country.

    - Mike
267  Main Forum / Around the Campfire / Easy Breakfast Bake on: March 27, 2014, 11:19:48 pm
This Betty Crocker recipe has been a hit at our house, and a lifesaver when we have a houseful of company.  It is tasty, easy to prepare, can be made ahead of time and leftovers can be frozen. 

This is the 'crowd sized' recipe (serves 12), but it can be halved easily (see notes at the end).  The smaller version works great for an RV.

For the RV I also prepare the sausage, bell pepper and onion mixture ahead of time (and either refrigerate or freeze) after cooking it which makes preparation even easier.

Impossibly Easy Breakfast Bake
(Serves 12)

2 packages (12 oz each) bulk pork sausage
1 medium bell pepper, chopped (1 cup)
1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 cup)
3 cups frozen hash brown potatoes
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese (8 oz)
1 cup Original Bisquick mix
2 cups milk
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 eggs

Heat oven to 400F. Grease rectangular baking dish, 13x9x2 inches. Cook sausage, bell pepper and onion in 10-inch skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until sausage is no longer pink; drain. Stir together sausage mixture, potatoes and 1 1/2 cups of the cheese in baking dish.

Stir Bisquick mix, milk, pepper and eggs until blended. Pour into baking dish.

Bake uncovered 40 to 45 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 1 to 2 minutes longer or just until cheese is melted. Cool 5 minutes.

Expert Tips
If you'd rather make a smaller recipe using a 9-inch pie plate, cut all ingredient amounts in half and bake 30 to 35 minutes.
Savory Impossibly Easy Pies can be covered and refrigerated up to 24 hours before baking. You may need to bake a bit longer than the recipe directs since youll be starting with a cold pie. Watch carefully for doneness.

    - Mike

268  Main Forum / Tips and Tricks / Re: How do you store your spices? on: March 27, 2014, 11:55:42 am
We are still struggling a bit with this too.  I think we will end up keeping it simple by buying the half sized bottles of spices we use regularly and a couple of the multi-spice bottles Ron just described.  While we have enough storage space right now, I imagine after a few more trips we will have less and less.  The place I am eyeing for storing the spices right now is over the main coach door.  Some folks have apparently built a small lipped shelf around that decorative piece above the door to hold keys, flashlights, etc.  Should hold enough spices.  Not sure Joni would like them displayed like that tho.

This place has a lot of interesting products (expensive) which could be duplicated more cheaply.

My one large go-to spice bottle is Kirkland Mesquite Seasoning.  A little goes a long way and I use it in pulled pork, short ribs, salmon, sauces, soups, steaks, burgers.  It has a sweet and somewhat smoky taste.....similar to smoked paprika, which I love as well.

  - Mike
269  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Lazy Furnace on: March 26, 2014, 07:42:17 pm
Um, that is if Marcus can take time out from his new show on CNBC called "The Profit".

But seriously, an igniter is the most basic piece on a furnace, water heater etc.  It's a $15 part and they even make 'universal' igniters that fit most applications.  I'd run from Camping World, get the closest HVAC guy and send Kermit or Atwood the bill along with a letter describing the 'service' you received.

If I were anywhere close, I'd drive down and do it for you myself.

  - Mike
270  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Report on alignment and handling of our 2552 on: March 24, 2014, 11:13:37 am
Resurrecting some older posts in order to get in some of our experiences now that we've had our rig a while.

Our experience with handling was almost identical to Bruce and Sharon, in our 2552.  It wandered a bit and required a lot of minor steering adjustments while driving.  Could live with it.

First, I had an alignment done.  One very minor adjustment was needed.  So minor, they didn't even charge me.

Then I brought it our local RV guy who attended the Henderson class for mechanics.  He gave our rig the Road Performance Assessment and we decided to go with the recommended Safe-T-Plus and also the rear Henderson bar (as Greg and Kathy did, and as Ron recommended ages ago). Quite a noticeable improvement.  After a long drive I'm much less fatigued.  Other similar products from other companies would probably work just as well.  He also said our tires felt a bit overinflated so he weighed all four corners and recommended 70lbs front and 75lbs rear, according to the Michelin chart for RV's. 

In case anyone is interested, our rig was pretty balanced side to side.  It was pretty much loaded up for a trip and our tanks were: water-1/3 full, grey-1/2 full, black-empty, propane-full.  No passengers.  Here's the wheel position weights:
Front right: 2200 lbs
Front left: 2330 lbs
Rear right: 4390 lbs
Rear left: 4320 lbs

One sort of interesting note.  During the Road Performance Assessment, our guy said he wanted to test how the rig handled if you had to swerve into the next lane or wide shoulder when you didn't have room to stop quickly in an emergency.  I reluctantly said, "um, uh....ok"  He checked for traffic anywhere near us and when it was clear for a great distance he cut the wheel into the next lane (I think we were going about 40mph). It was a bit scary, but the PC handled amazingly well and straightened out quickly in the next lane without any swerve or fishtail or even much of a lean.  He did this one more time into the other lane again and it handled just as well.  He was impressed, and I wiped the sweat off my brow.  I am the epitome of a defensive driver and don't ever anticipate needing to make this maneuver (gee, should I hit the guy in front of me or the guy in the next lane?), but now that it's been accomplished at least I know that it can be done. 

  - Mike
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