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61  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: What do you consider a MUST for a Phoenix Cruiser on: December 22, 2017, 04:04:27 pm
3 people before me here said to get the slide out.  I hope the few who got the 2552 without the slide out, will reply in with their thoughts about their decision.

No doubt about it, the slide out is most popular.  But my personal thoughts are......If you are NOT traveling with large pets, or are not seriously over-weight people who needs lots of elbow room, the No-Slide with over-size dinette just might be your better choice.

You mentioned the desire for lots of extra storage.  The No-Slide dinette will provide piles more storage than the couch inside the slide out.  The bench seats offer lots of storage, even more if you request Phoenix leave out the drawers so you can utilize the entire cabinet from above as well as the side door.  Also the hanging cabinet above the dinette is deeper, wider, and taller than the one inside the slide out.  CLICK HERE to see our 2350 with a no-slide dinette.  The 2552 version can be made even bigger offering a bigger table and additional leg room.

There is a long list of mostly pip-squeek reasons why a slide-out is not the better choice, but only two big ones why it is.
1) more spacious interior when the slide out is open
2) better resale value because most people prefer the more spacious interior.
62  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Replacing Shocks on 2017 E-450 on: December 22, 2017, 10:10:21 am
As the years pass, I have learned much about this.  I think I understand this better now.  Models 2100, 2350, 2400, and possibly 2351 on the E350 chassis are the PCs that benefit most from the suspension upgrades mentioned in the past.  Models 2551 and longer do okay just as they are from the factory.  I don't believe the E350 itself is the culprit, but rather the short wheel base with an extended rear over-hang that is dimensioned closer to the wheel base, also referred to as the ratio between over-all length and wheel base.  A motor home with a large portion of the house hanging out behind the rear axle tends to fling the rear around on the short wheel based vehicle which requires more steering compensation.  Building short models on the E450 helps that condition, but the suspension upgrades on the E350 address the problem most effectively along with benefiting from a softer ride.

The short models built on a 2007 E350 and older, are most vulnerable because Ford did not install any kind of rear stabilizer bar until 2008.  The rear end thrashes around so badly because it lacks that bar.  That was our experience with our 2007 E350 2350.  Doing all the suspension upgrades I always talk about might have been over-kill, but the rig is very steady because of it.  The upgrades had minimal impact to the softness of ride.  It remains relatively soft which is easy on the motor home, it's contents, and the people riding inside.  It is also steady when parked with no need to stabilize the rig with jacks.

You with longer PCs built on the E450, your rigs are better proportioned and properly weighted for the E450.  Having a long wheel base, you are okay just as you are with the E450.  You too would benefit from suspension upgrades, but they will be less beneficial.  How good is good enough?
63  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: 15 Amp Service Connection on: December 21, 2017, 03:51:21 pm
Looks good there fandj, like Phoenix did it for you.
64  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: 15 Amp Service Connection on: December 20, 2017, 04:56:36 pm
Your easiest, cheapest route is to either turn off your heater or your water heater when you use the microwave.
That is our practice as I am sure is the practice of most others.  It works!
65  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Rain Water Leaks into coach. on: December 20, 2017, 10:25:20 am
Volkemon, You were the right people to rescue that PC.  ThumbsUp  Keep up the great work.
66  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Replacement of Fiamma 45i awning on: December 20, 2017, 09:53:38 am

You MUST GET those two lower mounting brackets.  $40 each is ridiculous.  Look on Ebay and even call the factory.  Phoenix supports their older PC customers and might have a pair of lower mounting in-stock at a reasonable price.

I cannot imagine using the awning without those lower mounting brackets.  Ropes and stakes is NOT the solution.

When the lower end of the poles are mounted to the house via those missing brackets, and you install the center support, you can tighten up the awning eliminating the slack you complain about.

You have a decent awning.  Just get what you need to make it right.  Do you have the center pole?  It should be stored in the main entry door door frame, opposite the crank.

We had our awning open during heavy rains.  It works fine.  As CalCruiser said, angle the rear downward so the water runs off.
67  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Introduce Yourself! on: December 20, 2017, 09:43:02 am
Welcome aboard to the Hoecker's.  I hope you are able to find a 2350 to size up.  We have owned our 2350 for over 10 years now and continue to love it.  But it's not for everyone.  The limited reduced-size double bed access being the biggest challenge.  It's a good thing my wife and I love to cuddle-up.
68  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Tow Dollies on: December 20, 2017, 09:28:35 am
Wouldn't the price of a 4 down set up be around 2Gs? Not to mention to price of a good used car to tow 4 down.
$2000 will be shy of the actual cost if you take your PC and vehicle to a hitch shop.  If shopping frugal buying what you need below retail on the internet and installing it yourself, you'll be well below the $2000 mark.

10.5 years ago it cost me roughly $1100 to tow our 2000 Toyota MR2 Spyder without tow brakes, primarily the cost of the Roadmaster tow bar and mating tow bar bracket for the car.  I bought them direct from Roadmaster.  We switched to a 2006 Jeep Liberty 3 years later which cost another $800, reusing the tow bar.  Most of the cost was for the Unified tow brake kit.  I bought them during the recession at discounted prices.

The cost of the tow bar brackets for the two vehicles were different, as was the installation.  The MR2 with a uni-body, the bracket was a huge bar with odd angular mounting points on the ends.  It spanned across the radiator and bolted into many places.  I had to remove the front bumper cover to mount it.  The Liberty kit could fit in a shoe box because it utilized the vehicle frame for strength, a very easy installation by comparison.  Unlike the MR2, the Liberty was designed to accommodate a tow bar bracket.

Our 2006 Liberty is my wife's daily driver, currently with 75,000 miles.  It's a cream puff for a Liberty.  She continues to love it so very much which is great for me.  I think (and hope) it will be around here for many more years.  I dread the thought of replacing it because so few new vehicles today can be towed 4-down.  The selection today is nothing what it was 10 years ago.
69  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: RV Consignment Specialists on: December 19, 2017, 03:42:59 pm
Thanks to all of you who took the time to respond.  I was originally hoping to locate a 2551/2552 and make a trade with our 2100.  Searches came up with the aforementioned 'Consignment Specialists'.  Sites which appeared to offer every make/model of RV produced in the last twenty years.  All of which were 'unavailable' when an inquiry was made.
Maybe it's legit, but it doesn't sound right to me.  It almost sounds like paying someone else to find your motor home, a ludicrous idea to me.

If I were in the market for a used motor home, I'd buy first from a real private party, second from a brick-n-mortar dealer.  I would start my morning by internet shopping with coffee in-hand.
70  Main Forum / Tips and Tricks / Re: Converting From Two 12V Batteries To Two 6V Batteries on: December 19, 2017, 10:41:12 am
Today on another forum, I explained my experience with two sets of 12V batteries, and the benefits converting to two 6V batteries.  It seemed a good idea to share it on this thread.



We had two sets of 12V batteries prior to the pair of 6V batteries we have now.  The two 6V batteries perform much MUCH better. Unlike 12V batteries wired in parallel, the 6Vs drain in unison and charge in unison which provide more extended 12V power than two 12Vs.

Our 12V batteries wired properly for power balance, one 12V battery always drained faster than the other.  When charging them, one would always get over-charged while the other never got fully charged. Eventually one battery becomes ill from it all, causing us to replace the batteries prematurely.

Our 12V batteries, year #1 was always good. Year #2 was okay. Year #3 was rocky. Once we tried year #4. As Trump would say, year #4 was "A Disaster". With our 6V batteries, they are AGM batteries selected for their maintenance-free benefit, we finished year #3 and they performed like year #1. They do so well that I leave them wired up to our PC off season so I have interior lighting. When I power-up, my power panel display shows their voltage around 12.6V +/- 0.1V which is right where they should be. I do put them on a secondary Black & Decker charger over-night about once every 2 to 3 months for maintenance.

I bought our Duracaell 6V AGM batteries at Costco. You can also get standard lead acid there.  The AGMs cost about 2/3 more but well worth it for the maintenance-free, boil-over-free benefit.

If switching from 12V to 6V batteries, make sure your battery compartment can handle their increased height. 6V batteries are a few inches taller. I had to modify our battery compartment to accommodate for the extra height.  AGM batteries will require chargers with an AGM setting. So if switching to AGM technology, make sure your RV charger has an AGM setting. I think the AGM setting pumps out a slightly higher voltage.  Our 2007 Tripp-Lite inverter has an AGM setting via changing jumpers per the owners manual.
71  Main Forum / Photos / Re: Maiden Voyage with the New RV and Jeep Toad on: December 19, 2017, 09:24:19 am
Wrangler or Liberty, or any other vehicle for that matter, I strongly advise to tow with stock size wheels and tires to allow the vehicle to track properly behind the motor home.....especially beneficial when making a turn.

Towing this way was intimidating for me before I made the decision to do it.  It was also intimidating during the first trip.  But like the big decisions in life, I acclimated.  
72  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Replacement of Fiamma 45i awning on: December 19, 2017, 09:07:33 am
CalCruiser provided good advise on set-up.

Our 2007 box awning is surely not an easy push-button operation, but it does work well when attaching the lower end of the poles to the motor home.  I never tried using the PC-provided stakes and ropes.  When familiar with the awning, it takes about 5 minutes to set up.

Being you have a 2006, your main entry door swings freely and will hit the awning pole when attached to the motor home.  I came up with a door stop utilizing a rope to resolve that, one of many little extras I did detailed HERE.  Many of the extras primarily benefit the older PCs.  Newer PCs have some of them implemented in one form or another.
73  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Tow Dollies on: December 19, 2017, 08:56:01 am
For me personally, I would surely use a tow dolly for one-time use, to get from point A to B, like moving across the country.  Also as a snow bird moving south for the winter and north for the summer.  In both scenarios, I would rent the thing.  But dealing with a tow dolly during the types of trips we take and places traveled such as national parks, monuments, etc. I think it would be too much to manage.

Towing 4-wheels-down without a tow dolly, when in a rush, we can unhook and drive away in the tow vehicle in 45 seconds and re-hook in 3.5 minutes.  And there is no third wheeled thing to deal with.

Dynadave brought up a good point about the width of a tow dolly.  It just might be wider than a PC.

If you are seriously considering buying a tow dolly, rent one for your first trip and see how it works for you.  Maybe our comments are unfounded for your types of trips.  Cost to rent is cheap, and cheaper yet if you return it to the place you are renting it from.
74  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: RV Consignment Specialists on: December 18, 2017, 10:45:20 pm
Hi Cropduster,

You own a 2002 2100, a desirable PC floor plan.  And given the model year, you won't be working with piles of money either.  If you were planning to have someone sell it for you on consignment, why not try selling it yourself?  Many people sell vehicles and even homes by them self.  It's not hard, and very safe when done properly.  You only need to ask how.  I have bought and sold many vehicles between private parties, and even sold our old motor home to a fellow across the country on Ebay.

If your plan is to purchase a new PC from Phoenix, it might be worth trading in your old one.

75  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Macerator pump on: December 18, 2017, 10:34:17 pm
Yep, keelhauler has the right advise.

Make sure to put only #1, #2, and toilet paper down the toilet.  No feminine napkins or other items because they will jam the macerator but good.  You don't want to be cleaning it out by hand.  A guest/visitor might not understand the reason for the rules.  Make sure they understand and follow them.  Also provide them a friendly-use garbage can in the bathroom.
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