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 > Your search for posts made by 'Desert Captain' found 792 matches.

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  Subject Author Date Posted Forum
What is the dumbest thing you have seen while on the road?

I'm sure this list could be endless but my personal favorite, frequently seen (saw it again today, twice), are the chuckleheaded passengers with their (usually), bare feet crossed up on the dash. Gee, I wonder how long it will take their knees to go back through their teeth when the air bag deploys? :S
Desert Captain 08/29/14 09:34pm General RVing Issues
RE: Propane tank full?

Rethink your gauges. If 75% is full, then 1/4 is actually 1/3rd , 1/2 full actually 2/3rds, full 3/3 thirds. The remaining 1/4 is the expansion room for safety. X2 We left Tucson last week with our 13 gallon LP tank showing 2/3's full. Pulled in at Parker AZ, Buckskin Mountain SP and as the temp climbed to 104+ we suddenly had a full LP tank. You gotta love the LP fairy! :B
Desert Captain 08/26/14 10:10pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: What extras should I insist on in a new Class C

May I ask why roof vent covers are needed? We are shopping for our first Class C MH and have found all the advice very helpful. They allow for good air flow rain or shine without the moisture getting in. :C
Desert Captain 08/23/14 08:23pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: What extras should I insist on in a new Class C

Our 24' C (Nexus), came with a 35,000 BTU, 4 vent furnace. It only needs to run for 5 or 10 minutes tops bfore driving the temp up to 70 something. We set the thermostat at 65 when we go to bed and even with outside temps down into the low 30's/40's it will only kick on once or twice during the running for about 5 minutes each time. The thermostat is on the wall above our bed so it is easy to kick it up to 70 in the morning without even getting out of bed. The coach is heavily insulated and holds the heat in or out as needed. The 13,500 BTU ac consistently gives us 20+ degrees below the outside ambient temp. As noted earlier in this thread the Maxair Turbo with its fan and motor located up and out of the coach works very well quietly moving lots of air, rain or shine. A lot of RVs come with inadequate heating and cooling systems and that is a tough and expensive problem to cure. We are 20 miles northwest of Lake Tahoe on the Truckee River at 6,500' and it dropped into the high 30's last night... not a problem.
Desert Captain 08/23/14 09:48am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Vermillion cliffs

At Zion stay in the Watchman CG inside the park. For $18 a day you get 30 amp service along with all the other normal amenities. Heading to the North Rim I recommend The USFS CG Jacob Lake. From there the Rim is an easy 47 mile day trip. Leaving Jacob Lake takes you down the mountain and past the Vermillon Cliffs. Lee's Ferry Cg at the Colorado River is another nice stop but watch the weather. From there Monument valley is an easy drive, most folks stay at Goulding's(pricey but nice location and amenities). PM me if you would like more info.
Desert Captain 08/22/14 08:16pm Roads and Routes
Tucson to Tahoe... notes from the road

Departed Tucson Wed morning bound for Vegas via Parker, Havesu etc. The weather was much cooler than normal, so we stopped at Buckskin Mtn SP around noon(still only 91), and the CG was nearly empty, only 10 sites occupied. It topped out at 106 which is about 10 degrees cooler than normal but the humidity was 12% and the Colorado River a delightful 82. Our site was 50 yards from the river and I only managed to throw myself in 4 times to go along with several cool down outdoor showers. The 13,500 BTU AC consistently gave us 20+ degrees below the ambient temp and with the sun shades in the windshield and the cab screened off the coach stayed in the mid to low 80's. Woke up cold at dawn as the outside temp had dropped all the way to 85 and it was a brisk 64 in the coach.:B Took I40 west to Barstow then 58 up to 395 North. Up through Lone Pine and settled in at Brown's Town in Bishop. On to Tahoe tomorrow and ultimately on to our friends in Nevada City in a couple of days. Regular gas on 395 is $4.17 but considering the views it might just be worth it.
Desert Captain 08/21/14 09:47pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: why a class c over a class a ?

Different strokes for different folks..... but for many it just comes down to safety. No air bags in a Class A, no engine between you and the point of impact and no fishbowl, as in huge, windshield to become a slice and dice disaster. C's are easier/cheaper to maintain/drive and generally cost less. Most A's have limited accommodations, the typical 40 footer sleeps two.... comfortably. If you have a family and a budget it's a Class C every time. As always.... Opinions and YMMV. :C
Desert Captain 08/19/14 09:17pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Do Ice Cubes in the Black Tank Really Work?

I think the OP missed the point of dumping ice into your holding tank. Seems to me it is more about getting rid of your ice without wasting it more than an effective tank scrubber. Even if the impact on "cleaning" the tank (as I drive it back to the storage lot or to the dump station), is minimal, why not? Another word for ice is "water" and you need to leave a decent amount in the tank. What do you do with your left over ice, toss it in the sink or dump it on the ground? Contrary to the OP's assertion that it costs money in gas and ice I have never heard of anyone buying ice just to dump it down the toilet and how does doing so cost you more in gas?. :h I liked the video, very well done but it does not begin to show that there is anything wrong with getting rid of your leftover ice in this manner and he admits it does help a little. So where is the harm? :B
Desert Captain 08/18/14 11:18am General RVing Issues
RE: Fueling

"In the case above of DesertCaptain, it was a savings of $5.85. " Actually the Chase card saved us $7.65 and GB found me a station that was ten cents a gallon cheaper than most of the others in the area ($3.25), for a net savings of $12.15 on a single fill up. Often GB will find stations that are 20 to 30 cents a gallon less than the name brands along the interstates. When we are on the road doing 400 to 450 a day that is a 45 gallon fill up every day. It is not hard to save $10 to $20 a day in fuel and that will usually pay for our site for the night. :B
Desert Captain 08/16/14 09:03am Class A Motorhomes
RE: Fueling

OP, I would suggest getting the GasBuddy App as in the last two months it's saved me 10-18 cents/gallon using my credit card for diesel. That's over $100 and I got the miles on $2600. It's amazing what a couple of blocks will make in the price of fuel and you do not have to use cash or a debit card. X10 on the Gas Buddy app. I cannot imagine anyone fueling an RV not having, using and loving it! I get to tack on an additional 5% cash back from my Chase Freedom Visa this quarter and that really adds up. Filled up here in the Tucson the other day at $3.25 but after the cash back it comes out to $3.08 (and it took 45 gallons to top up the 55 gallon tank on our 24' C. :B
Desert Captain 08/15/14 07:47pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: Some Noob questions

We have a nice 24' 6" C and it is perfect for the two of us (and of course da pooch), but I just do not see anything in the 25' range working for your family of 4. Having to make up the dinette which becomes a smallish bunk at best, every night will get old fast. Coming from a large fiver you will probably need to be closer to 30 to comfortably make it work and then you are back at the "Gotta have a Toad dilemma" .... but since you asked: Using ours for sightseeing, shopping etc., is a piece of cake as it easy to drive and park. Leaving a site merely entails putting a couple of items away, disconnecting from power (if available), turning the key and driving off. Yes you do need to keep the clutter to a minimum but that has always been our routine anyway. Leveling has never been an issue. I use the yellow Leggo style blocks and have never needed to go more than 2 blocks high. If leveling takes more than 3 minutes and two tries I am simply not paying enough attention. Leveling systems add weight, complexity and expense but some folks like the ability to just push a button (you frequently see them under their coach placing boards for the leveling jacks to sit on). :h Our C, like most out there, came with a 4,000 watt built in gas generator and works great. Located forward on the street side it is very quiet and fumes have never been an issue. In the last year we have put 18,000+ miles on the coach and only 25 hours on the genny. It burns about .5 of a gallon when running under a heavy load (which is the best way to run it). A propane generator will use more propane in extended applications than most coaches carry (keep in mind that an LP tank rated at 14 gallons will only hold 80%=11 gal, of that figure), gas is cheaper and easier to refuel. If your coach is a diesel then a diesel genset makes a lot of sense but LP.... not so much. The Hershey show would be the ultimate place to look as they reportedly have everything under the sun. Bring the entire family and see what will work for all of you but I would leave the checkbook home as they have some smooooth talking salesmen there. Good luck! :B
Desert Captain 08/15/14 08:23am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Drivablity of Class C?

Doesn't anyone do a thorough test drive before buying? :S So many folks complain about the handling of their coaches but if it was poor on the test drive why in the world would they have bought it in the first place? :h If it was fine on the test drive and down the road the handling deteriorates then it is a simple matter to fix/repair or replace the defective component(s). Too many people expect a 10 to 20,000# motorhome to handle like the family car and that simply is not going to happen. Also, as noted above, overweight motorhomes seldom handle well and many roll out of the factory at or even over their designated weights. A trip to the scales and the proper psi can work wonders for $10 or less. :R
Desert Captain 08/14/14 08:05pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Enjoying the Tucson summer {Monsoon}

Those monsoons may be neat for some while in their S&B houses ... but how about camping in it. That, to me, would be fun. Have any of you intentionally RV camped in monsoon season and found yourselves snuggled up in your rig enjoying the show (safely, of course)? We were in one once ... camped outside of Yellowstone by a lake. What a treat that was! Once again we agree. :B Whenever the Monsoon slows down here at the S&B we look to the White Mountains for fast moving thunderstorms. They are about a 3.5 hour ride and almost always a sure thing. We have enjoyed them for years from as far west as the Mogollon Rim, east through Show Low, Hawley Lake and on to Greer. Seems like the best storms come with the higher elevations (7,000' to 9,000' +). Being warm, dry and snug in our rig I think we enjoy the storms even more. Nothing quite like having a front row seat when Mother Nature gets up on her hind legs. :W
Desert Captain 08/14/14 03:39pm General RVing Issues
RE: Enjoying the Tucson summer {Monsoon}

Captain, how far are you from Catalina SP? We stayed their for New Year's and loved it. Loved the entire area actually. We are just 8 miles north of Catalina SP just a couple of miles east of Oracle Road aka State 77. We sit at the western foot of Mount Lemon (9,300') at 3,400'. This keeps us a little cooler than downtown Tucson and boy do we ever get some wild weather coming down off the mountain. :B
Desert Captain 08/13/14 06:23pm General RVing Issues
RE: Enjoying the Tucson summer {Monsoon}

To each his own. I like my desert home in the winter, but I'm very happy to leave it vacant all summer, while I enjoy the cool rocky mountains of CO. Those summer monsoons may cool things off for a few hours, but they also raise the humidity to uncomfortable levels. When you're used to a dry 20% humidity level, suddenly pushing it up to 70% feels like a sauna; and the brief cooling ends quickly with a return to 100 degrees. Those living in the desert, always welcome a good rainfall, but one of the disadvantages of that heavy rain is a heavy growth of weeds following the rain. When I return each fall I'm faced with weeks of work to get rid of the new growth of evil "goat head" puncture vine weeds. As a thunderstorm rolls in the humidity usually climbs about as fast as the temperature drops leaving very pleasant conditions, 70% only feels like a sauna when it is 100 degrees and those two just don't meet very often. Most non rain days are in the high 90's with 12 to 20% humidity, all in all very livable. Just get your outdoor tasks done early in the day (playing golf, hiking, biking etc.). If it does stay up in the triple digits for more than a few days we just jump in the Class C and head up top the white Mountains. A gorgeous 3.5 hour drive puts you at 7,000' to 9,000' + where it is nice and cool. :B Weeds need never be an issue "if" you simply put down pre emergent (I have used Surflan with excellent results for years), and water it in. I do our yard and several of my snowbird neighbors every winter. Apply it somewhere in Jan - March (timing the application to coincide with a rain storm as you need to water it in at least half an inch) and you won't see a single weed of any kind right through the Monsoon and on into the following winter. Works for me. :C
Desert Captain 08/13/14 02:19pm General RVing Issues
RE: Enjoying the Tucson summer {Monsoon}

is that rain warm?? I,d be out in it. You betcha! Lots of fun to splash around in. :B
Desert Captain 08/13/14 12:25pm General RVing Issues
Enjoying the Tucson summer {Monsoon}

Believe it or not the summers are our favorite time of year here. Yesterday brought another amazing Monsoon thunderstorm. The Monsoon brings spectacular storms that provide as much entertainment as color to the high Sonoran desert. This one rolled in at 2:00 and lasted until 4. Here is a shot of our front yard: http://i549.photobucket.com/albums/ii362/Captottersea/IMG_2764_zpse8eaf620.jpg These storms make for some very interesting clouds formations: http://i549.photobucket.com/albums/ii362/Captottersea/IMG_2761_zpscdbcd12f.jpg While not as torrential as they can be (we have seen up to 4" in 20 minutes), we got 2" of rain in 2 hours. The rain was preceded by the usual plummeting of the temperature from 98 down to 72 in 15 minutes where it remained for the duration of the storm. Lots of lightning and thunder, often directly overhead but fortunately not much wind as we often see gusts approaching 50 or more. We only have a few more weeks before the Monsoon winds down and hope to enjoy many more storms before the season ends. :B Here is a shot of our back yard, during really heavy rain the back yard fills up to 4" deep and logs start floating off of the wood pile, a couple of hours later it is bone dry: http://i549.photobucket.com/albums/ii362/Captottersea/IMG_2756_zps1a670c1c.jpg
Desert Captain 08/13/14 11:19am General RVing Issues
RE: Costs to register TT in AZ

If you buy a travel trailer from a private party in Arizona there is NO sales tax. Been there done that... twice! :B
Desert Captain 08/12/14 01:23pm Travel Trailers
RE: Tow/Haul

What one "gains" with the E450 chassis over the E350 chassis - with an RV coach's raw weight that doesn't require it - is (at least for my model year): 1) Larger brake swept areas. 2) Thicker frame steel. 3) Increased transmission fluid volume. 4) Hydraulically assisted power brakes instead of vacuum assisted. 5) Wider rear stance. 6) Lower rear differential ratio. All of these differences provide long term advantages and are well worth the extra dollars we had to pay for the E450 chassis under a small Class C. I advocate "buying a heavy duty vehicle and using it in a light duty way" as the best way to help ensure safety and long term reliability with lesser maintenance. There are ways around the less mileage and rougher ride of the E450 chassis, but very few affordable ways around having a lighter duty chassis to begin with. Not quite... According to the Ford website for my 2011 E-350 (Compared with the E-450) chassis: The brakes are exactly the same. The frame sections are larger on the 450, .02" thicker. :R The website does not address trans fluid volume but it is the same trans. Yep a wider stance.... but not by much. Like I said you need the lower rear end to do the work the 450 was designed to do but on 24' or less it is just overkill that reduces ride quality and mileage with no appreciable benefit. Carrying around the extra weight to support a job that that you will never need it to is simply a waste. Your reliability and maintenance will be no better with a 450 than a 350, If anything the 450 has to work harder than a 350 to just get on down the road. My 350 has 3,368# of payload, 1,450# of which I don't even use fully loaded and it has the 55 gallon fuel tank. Advocate for the 450 on small C's all you like it is still overkill. We usually agree on most issues but ranting that your 450 is superior to the 350 is an inaccurate generalization.... and as I frequently point out: Opinions and YMMV. :B
Desert Captain 08/11/14 11:21am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Tow/Haul

"This reminds me of a subtle point. A Class C coach (like tpi's and ours) that lightly loads an E450 chassis may need less use of the Tow/Haul mode's off-throttle downshifting advantages because normal engine braking is stronger. Since an E450's rear differential has a lower ratio (4:56) than the E350's, the E450 motorhome's overall engine to rear wheel gearing ratio is lower. Hence the engine will hold it back better when off the gas coming up to stops or when off the gas going down grades. This is another reason I advocate use of the E450 chassis on smaller Class C rigs that, from a pure weight perspective, could get by on only the E350 chassis. " The performance of the E-350 is hardly a matter of just "getting by". The reason the E-450's have the lower rear end, 4:56 vs the 4:10's of the RE-350, is all of the extra weight. Typically the 450's are found on larger to much larger motorhomes which necessitates the lower gearing to handle the load. On a Class C under 25' a 450 is overkill but if you want less mileage and a rougher ride by all means go for it, but there is little if anything to be "gained". As always.... opinions and YMMV. :C
Desert Captain 08/11/14 09:04am Class C Motorhomes
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