Respectfully commenting on the Smart Car.....
I feel the Smart car is ideal for taking along on a trip behind a motor home right on the ground, not on a trailer, solely for simplicity. The Smart is a much better choice over a scooter or other cycle for safety, comfort, and weather. The question you need to ask yourself is..... Does the car meet your everyday need when you are not on a trip? Is it a vehicle you would commute around town in? If your answer is "yes", then you are making a good decision.
As for me on a personal note, I would not feel comfortable driving around my home town area in a Smart car because I am not sold on it's safety. Though it's occupancy cage is well engineered to prevent penetration, the lack of mass along with it's shape has it bouncing around accident scenes like a billiard ball. I fear it would fly into other moving vehicles along with adding fatal "G" forces on occupant internal organs.
I wish I could find that early Smart car crash test video of a yellow Smart against a Civic or Corolla. The impact was a 1/3 driver side frontal test. The "other" car fared typically well with occupant safety. The Smart occupancy cage did great but the car spun multiple revolutions in the air about 5 feet off the ground and soaring away.
That scared the heck out of me. I couldn't feel comfortable with a Smart after seeing that video. Again, that is just me. Everything has risk, even driving a motor home, especially a class A. Each decides for himself what risk he is willing to accept.
I saw the exact NTSHA video. A F-150 in the test jiggled slightly. The Smart car spun around like a top.
2: Added second house battery and switch.
Feel dumb by asking, but did you add a second battery, or a second battery bank?
Regardless, I like your switch, and the only thing I'd probably add to that would be a 200 amp catastrophic fuse just so the batteries are protected against a dead short.
It isn't the answering machine... it is the fact that a lot of people and businesses use them as a passive-aggressive cop-out where messages stashed on them are never returned. This is so common that people automatically assume getting an answering machine means to try calling back again.
As for frustrating answering machines, the ones that try to guide you by voice, cannot figure out what you are saying, then say, "please try back another time" are contraptions from a lower circle of Hell.
However, I wouldn't want to have this **** in the same sentence or paragraph as most RV parks. Virtually all I've interacted with do check their voice messages, so I do my part and leave a clear number, repeating the message to ensure it was received properly, especially on newer cellphones with worse call quality than the flip-phones from a decade ago.
Have any of you put a bag of trash in the bed of your truck for disposal on the way out and then simply drove right past the dumpster because your mind was on the trip ahead?
Best one I've encountered were people jumping into the bed of my truck, grabbing the garbage I had, throwing it into another vehicle, and driving off like they just heisted the Hope Diamond.
Since my rig is winterized, I use bags to line the toilet, then place those bags (after closing them tightly) in another garbage bag... so the garbage bag takers will be opening the back to a nasty surprise.
As for garbage, I like more than one thing mentioned. Trash pickup is a nice thing, but I am OK with garbage cans at the campsites (for small stuff), as well as dumpsters (for dealing with a lot of waste.)
Since I mainly boondock, I also do some things to minimize waste, so I have a minimum of trash coming with me:
1: I have tightly-fitting containers for food. I pour boxes of cereal into them, then toss the empty boxes at the grocery store. Frozen foods, I make sure I photograph the time to prepare and instructions, then chuck the box. This not just gets rid of trash, but allows me to stuff more items into the freezer. The funny thing, I left a plastic container of cereal in there for nine months... still quite edible. Storing in containers instead of boxes also keep the vermin at bay.
2: When tossing things that are not useful with #1, I try to tear paper stuff up. Just tearing a box up into pieces saves a lot of room.
3: I have been looking at shampoo/soap dispensers, but because I'm planning to change rigs in a year or two, I've not bothered to do this. However, this is definitely something worth doing to save space, and definitely will be a part of my next rig's kitchen and bathroom.
4: I also am using rechargable batteries. My next rig is getting a 300 watt Morningstar inverter whose sole purpose in life is to feed a dedicated circuit for those items.
Pretty much, the less paper and packaging that goes in the RV, the less that has to come out.
I'm actually surprised by that. How can a RV maker stay in business from nine units? Lazy Daze units may not have slide-outs, but they do well with making use of the enclosed space, and also have a lot of windows.
There is also Nexus RV and Coach House. Coach House is expensive because of their one piece construction (best resistance to leaks next to a class "B"), but Nexus RV seems to have a very good price/quality ("bang for buck") going for it.
Don't separate. Once together, keep them like that, unless you want to separate them permanently. Otherwise, as mentioned above, the more run down battery will draw from the better one.
If worried about the battery bank's health, consider a charge maintainer like a Battery Minder (if access to shore power is present), or a solar charging system.
What was the scam?
Could be a variety of things, but this was probably the same as the lottery scam. If the OP had walked down to the other truck, what he would have likely been shown is a paper ticket from a Casino indicating $180,000 balance or jackpot on it. (This is not how a Casino would pay that size jackpot anyway). The person holding the ticket would then make up some story as to why they could not go back to the casino to cash it. Sometimes they claim they are in the Country illegally or they may claim they owe a huge debt in Child Support or back taxes or give you some type of story as to why they need somebody else to go cash the check in.
Once the story is told they ask you if you will go cash it in and in exchange you will be offered some percentage of the winnings since you'll have to pay taxes on the full amount as it will be in your name. Once you say sure, I'll go cash it for you, then they ask how they can trust you. And of course the only way they can trust you to go cash it in and bring the money back is if you put up some cash up front in good faith. They'll then get as much cash and property from you as possible and then off you'll go to cash in the ticket, only to find it's fake and when you get back to the rest stop they are long gone.
Wow, that is a lot like a classic Craigslist scam here in Austin, where you have an item up for sale, someone offers you a high sum cashier's check in your name... but they need a few thousand of it back. They assert (falsely) that a cashier's check will always be good. Well, it won't be... it may be honored... but after a day or so, it will bounce, and the victim is out the lost cash.
Of course, there is the simpler ruse of someone coming behind with a lead pipe, and the thieves wind up with a motorhome ready for a trip to Mexico or to become a "lab annex" for the local tweakers.
I'd whip out a wand and glycerine based bubbling stuff (soapy water works, but it corrodes stuff), and go at it like that.
It almost certainly is the regulator.
While you are at it, might consider installing an Extend-A-Stay kit. This way, you can use propane cylinders for additional propane, or attach an outside stove and use it from your rig's propane system.
I think mine was made around the spring-summer of 2011, (it was a model year 2011 model, so that is why I got a decent deal on it.) Will have 160 days in it come April. For the price, as I didn't expect a Cadillac at Yugo prices, I think I've come out ahead, about $100/night, which is cheaper than even the least expensive roach motel in central Texas... and no worries about bedbugs.
I wouldn't blame the workers. I would blame the system. There are ways to make high quality goods, such as inspections during each state of the process, starting with decent materials (for example, Uponor ProPex or Flair-It Pro are the best you can get), proper procedure (each rig's wiring and plumbing is documented), etc. It is just easy for poor quality RV makers to skip basic QC and put out junk, or even start with worthless materials (fiberglass on luan for example) knowing that it will fail eventually.
You do get what you pay for though.
I have been in places where gray water is OK to let fly. In Texas, provided the landowner allows it, it is just fine.
Black water... different story. Illegal to dump anywhere.
what I have done is place a "blue boy" turd tank in my truck's bed. I then used the macerator pump to empty the tanks into that. Then, I drove the waste tank to a nearby dump station, hooked up a hose, and let gravity do the rest. Since the pump did the heavy lifting of the water, I didn't have to, which makes life easy on the back.
I'd keep the Jeep as a toad. Best thing out there.
I'd also go with a "C" over a "B+" since the overhead loft adds significant space for storage.
Plus, with a "C" + toad, you always can leave the motorhome at camp and go do stuff in an urban area.
I can make it without a shower for a day... after that... ugh.
One idea might be buying an enclosed cargo trailer long enough to put the Smart car in... but with some additional length to have water tanks as near the axle as you can, with a 12 volt water pump for refilling the motorhome's fresh water. Additionally, one can bring along several "blue boy" waste tank containers as well.
Mind weight limits though.
I upgraded to "automotive" level keys, because they are less likely to break in the lock. Next time around, if I have to upgrade them, I'll just get the square or trianglar "keys", which are oddball enough to keep out people wandering by, but not too much security that it invites people with long screwdrivers.
I would wonder about replacing the slide seals every 5-6 years. They are rubber, and the same dry rot which pops tires does affect those, so I wonder about having those changed just to help protect against water intrusion.