January 4, 2015

Random Thoughts

I’ve been cleaning up the blog, deleting catagories, posts and mostly dribble.

People who own sailboats know the importance of on-going maintenance.

What’s in a name?  Sailboater’s know and this is why I’m looking for a new one to name the coach.

You can’t go without a dentist.

NEXT UP:  A small drip in the hyronic heating.Family Pics too 007

January 4, 2015


image imageimageimage image image

A few pics of the interior.  I’m way behind the curve on blogging pics, video’s and tweets (which I know nothing about).  So, I haven’t figured out how to get photo’s from my phone to the blog.  My new Ipad takes pics so that makes it easy.

September 13, 2014

Power Converter

The new power converter arrived last week.  The old one was too hot to touch while handling the out-put f rom the generator on our last trip.  Two hours out from our destination and in 108 degree heat, the generator shut down.  The shore power / generator switch panel was abnormally hot and leg 1 was pulling over 20 amps with voltage dropping below 105.  After a few miles cooling down we were able to continue using only the rear AC.  Once we pulled in to the campground, I discovered the converter was so hot you couldn’t touch it.  It then shut down and took a couple more hours of cool down before we could get it to reset. Anyway, the old converter is 25 years old and I’m replacing it with as 100 amp Power Max.  Always seems like one project leads to another and this one is no exception.  Today I’ll head to Lowes to get some PVC pipe to make a new air intake for the converter compartment located under the bed.  Currently, dusty air comes up from below the chassis via what looks like a flexible dryer hose.  I plan to route clean air from inside the back bedroom.  This will mostly eliminate the dust and provide cooler air to the unit. I hope this will cure all the problems. Pic’s to follow at a later date.

UPDATE: 01/05/15

I continued to have problems with the electrical.  We took a trip to Camp Verde where the owner of the campground and his son volunteered their time to help track the problem down.  We spent 45 minutes to an hour going over the electrical system.  No luck, but the owner and son couldn’t have been more helpful and nice.

A few weeks after returning to town, I got out the mult-meter and started trouble shooting again.  I don’t know what got me thinking about the 250 amp fuse connecting the house batteries to the rest of the system.  Maybe it’s difficult to reach location kept me from investigating it more throughly.  Adhearing to my “do the easy stuff first” principal.  So I finally contorted my self enough to check voltage in and out of the fuse.  13.3 on one side and 6.7 on the other.  Hum?  My monitor over the dash would have the leg A side showing the same (from what I remember.  Anyway, not being an electrician, I always thought a fuse was either on or off, not somewhere in-between.  This fuse seemed to be acting like a resistor.  Off it came and I found a Blue Sea replacement on Amazon for $44.  It wasn’t an exact fit so I had to use a rat tail file to elongate the holes by 1/16 of an inch on each side. Once installed I tested the system with one battery hooked up.  Wow!  It works!  Next, I cleaned up the battery compartment, repainted, greased the tray slides and hook all the batteries back up.  All seems good.

Days later I was able to start up the generator.   16 volts plus when I first switched on power.  Just as the charger should do and then tapering off over the next 30 min. to a float of about 13.3.  I didn’t run the ac as its too cold outside but fired up the Wabasto instead.  No issues at this point.  I will update once we are able to run down the road with AC going.  I’m fairly confident my electrical issues are behind me.

September 9, 2014

About the Coach “Beatrice”

We purchased a 1989 Beaver Marquis with the “Hi-Tech” package on April 23, 2014. Hi-tech in 1989 meant you got a vcr. So I have much to do with the electronics, but unfortunately have been occupied with other issues with the coach.

First off, the air system had multiple leaks and the brakes needed adjusting. This lead me to taking it into Massey’s Truck Repair in Phoenix, AZ. The air bags were replaced, check valves replaced, work on the exhaust brake, fluids and filters changed. It was expensive and I ended up leaving the facility with two HWH jacks no longer working (more on that in another post). At least the coach now holds air and doesn’t leak down over-nite. The coach sat on their lot for almost two months to get the job done. One thing I’m going to do is start a tab for critiquing repair facilities. Suffice it to say, Massey’s will get a mixed review.

Next, I had new tires installed at Blue Ribbon Tire in Phoenix, AZ. They did an excellent job and the owners are fellow Rv’ers. I recommend them and would call them if I needed roadside service anywhere in Arizona.

A few more stats: there are approximately 37,000 miles on the coach. Cat 3208 turbo with after cooler. Onan 3 cylinder (Kuboto) diesel generator. Allison 4 speed transmission. Gillig chassis. 2 roof AC units, Wabasto heat, solid oak cabinets.

The guy I bought the coach from said he was the original owner, but a little research showed he got it from his dad at some point. Anyway, the guy was a liar and I knew it when he tried to pass off 11 year old tires as being 3 or 4 years old. I was ready to walk, but the missus kept on until it was ours. At least it had been garaged for some time and didn’t show any weathering from the Arizona sun.

We’ll see how things go over the next few months. I have a list of items needing attention or repair and I plan to post the progress along with pictures.

UPDATE: 01/04/15

After dealing with some additional “issues” with this coach, I’ve deciced a name change is in order.  I don’t think Beatrice was the correct choice and she obviously doen’s like her name.

September 9, 2014

Think I will keep this one

I’m taking the path of least resistance and will stick with this already established (but dormant) blog.

One thing that disappoints me as I scour other rv blogs, is they eventually dribble off into nothing. They stop rv’ing or something else happens. I’ve no been good at posting, but I’ve had so many things to document over the past few months since we got the new coach that I’m going to give it a try again.

I will clean up the old stuff on this site and get rid of the dead links and photos. Some other house keeping too.  

Here goes.

September 9, 2014

What to do?

I was thinking of starting a new blog and letting this one go. We have decided to work on going full-time in the new-to-to us coach we bought a few months ago.

February 11, 2013

5 year plan

We plan to RV full-time five years from now.  That’s spring of 2018. We’ll see.  I’m beginning to work on the roadmap to get there.  A fun part is capturing ideas I have on Pinterest. Just look up house truck and you’ll run across mine.

Money is the biggest issue and I’ll post some thoughts and links in the future.

February 11, 2013

The forgotten blog

Back after a couple of years to write something.  I think I’ll revamp a few things, delete some stuff and noodle about the future.

Since my last post, I’ve been busy working in a peculiar business that has managed to keep my interest.  No RV yet.  I look all the time on the web, but haven’t parted with any money.  I did pick up an old conversion van off C-list which seems to work ok for now.

I guess the past couple years have been mostly mundane work stuff.

March 31, 2011

El Toro

Quartzsite 2010 002

I saw this parked at Quartzite over a year ago.

Now when you see a rig outfitted with Long Horns you would think the owner would be a character.  Just the opposite in this case and quite unfriendly.  If you don’t want people talking to you, then what are you doing with horns on the front of your rig?

It’s available now for $7400 bucks by a dealer in Las Vegas.  I’ve been watching the price drop on “El Toro” and with gas near $4 a gallon I suspect it will sell around $4000 – maybe.

February 4, 2011

Violet’s Big Adventure

I almost cried watching Violet being driven off by a stranger the other evening.  There she went, rounding the corner, clearance lights all lit up and engine rumbling along as always.  It was a long day of testing her various systems and making a maddening repair to a leaky water line.  The Aussie buying her was basically unphased by the few hiccups we had and after he deposited cash in my account to pay for her the deal was done.  Now she’s on a long journey to Sidney, Australia to begin a new life after getting retro-fitted to be right-hand drive.  Violet now waits in Long Beach to be shipped out.  Her journey there was not without excitement as high winds must have gotten up under the awning and blew it right off the coach.  Turns out she is about 2 inches too long and they might have to take off the rear bumper before loading her on the boat.  The new owner bought her for his son-in-law and plans to install a solar system for extended boon-docking.  Old Violet is a rare coach, even here in the U.S.,  and in Australia she’s worth 10 times more in U.S. dollars than I could get here.  There is always a demand for quality even if it’s 24 years old.   We really enjoyed Violet and I’m sure the new owner will too.   

I think I enjoy searching for a motorhome as much as owning one.  I think I’ll take the next year or so searing, looking and evaluating exactly what would be the “perfect” coach for us.


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