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 > Your search for posts made by 'gotsmart' found 147 matches.

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RE: Wire size on 30 amp RV cables

... When we are using our setup in the cold weather we try to use the 20AMP PEDESTAL service at the camp grounds using a second HD Extension cord running into the trailer to just run our portable electric heaters. This 20AMP service doesn't pull power from the same leg the 30A source is using to feed the trailer. .... Be mindful of 20 amp outlets on 30/20 pedestals - especially in older parks. Unless you know the park in question and how the sites are wired, that 20 amp outlet may not have its own path to the bus bar. If you're at an older "30 amp only" park, don't be so sure about the 'separate leg' thing. I was on a crew that pulled the 20 amp outlets from pedestals in an older park - because the 20 amp outlet and its 20 amp breaker were daisy-chained off of the 30 amp socket. Don't get me wrong. There is a convenience factor to having the 20 amp outlet, but when folks started heavily using the 20 amp outlet for supplemental power on pedestals that I described above they were robbing power from their own coaches. It tripped breakers, caused phone calls to the office to complain about the power, etc. Since no amount of explaining can fix "stupid", the solution was to rip out the 20 amp outlets and install cover plates over the opening for the breaker and the outlet.
gotsmart 10/12/15 09:22pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: LED light upgrade in my Class C

You could also throw something like this: http://www.amazon.com/TOOGOO-5050-White-Landscaping-Light/dp/B00K67ULV0/ref=sr_1_11?ie=UTF8&qid=1444142464&sr=8-11&keywords=RV+LED+light+5050 Into your existing housings. The flat pancake style ones work better than the round ones, and make sure they're 5050 LEDs or higher if you want them bright. I replaced half of mine with 5050s, the other half with 3528s when I didn't need as much light. I replaced 9 of the below light fixture for 2 reasons: 1) I wanted to upgrade to LEDs, and 2) the 3-position switch (off, 1 bulb, 2 bulbs), in my experience, has a high failure rate. On the most frequently used lights the contacts on the "1 bulb" position get worn out - requiring one to use the "2 bulb" position to get the light to turn on. I've installed replacement fixtures several times. It became such a major PITA that just installing LED bulbs wouldn't fix the bad switches. I said "to heck with it" and replaced all of the fixtures with LED fixtures. The switch on the LED fixtures has a good solid feel to it. Time will tell how well the Thin-Lite fixtures work. http://thumbs3.picclick.com/d/w1600/pict/230554700130_/NEW-12V-12-VOLT-DOUBLE-PANCAKE-CEILING-LIGHT.jpg width=640
gotsmart 10/06/15 09:42pm Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: LED light upgrade in my Class C

The beauty of Robertsons are the screw stays on the end of the screwdriver whether up or down or sideways if you have the proper size. ( there are three ). I have a couple of screwdrivers that I inherited from my grandfather. They have a sleeve that slides on the shaft of the driver. There are 2 one inch long fingers on the sleeve. You put the screw on the driver and slide the sleeve down the shaft until the fingers hook onto the back of the screw head. It works like a charm - and these tools were made circa 1930.
gotsmart 10/02/15 05:13pm Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: LED light upgrade in my Class C

Looks pretty good there around the sink, nice work. You're looking at 1141 pancake lights from the day that I purchased the MH. It is a reference photo to show the location of the light outside of the shower that has a large wiring bundle hidden in the ceiling above it.
gotsmart 10/02/15 05:05pm Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: LED light upgrade in my Class C

I'm curious why you consider the square head screws to be "crummy". Do you not have a proper square-tipped (Robertson) screwdriver or screwdriver bit? They would be horrid with a Phillips bit, I suppose, just as a Phillips is pretty horrid with a flat bit. At least in my limited experience, they are far less likely to strip out or fail to work properly than Phillips or flat head screws. The very first tool I bought for my RV was a decent square-drive screwdriver, and it gets a lot of use. I used an S1 bit in a manual ratcheting driver. I don't know where CA got the screws in 2004/2005 that are in my MH, but the heads on the screws are ever-so-slightly larger than the S1 bit that I have, and some were slightly rounded in the corners - like what you'd find from aggressive use of a screw gun. My S2 bit was too large. Instead of "crummy" I should have said "cheap" or "not well made". I had 9 lights to replace. That's 36 screws. 4 or 5 of them took ten times the effort to remove than all the others. Other than that the install was fine. BTW, one will be amazed at what one can find laying on the inside of a pancake light when it is removed: - the cutout from the hole saw - wire nuts - a 2 inch wood screw laying across the switch in the cabinet over the head of the rear bed. ??? - a purple-colored wooden bead from a necklace or wristband in the light over the kitchen sink. Seriously
gotsmart 10/02/15 04:57pm Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
LED light upgrade in my Class C

I replaced 9 pancake lights and 1 single pancake light in my Cruise America 28R with LED versions from Thin-Lite. Sorry no pictures. Here is the link to the double pancake lights. Here is the link to the single pancake light. It is about a $350 USD upgrade, but it was well worth it IMO. The on/off switch on the LED lights feels solid. On the 1141 pancake lights, the switch would wear out (I replaced several over time due to failed switches). I have a 14-speed Fantastic Fan in the bathroom. It gets its power from an adjacent pancake light. With the fan on high, turning on the 1141 pancake light would slow the fan speed. With the LED light there was no change to the fan speed. With several of the LED double pancake lights turned fully on there was no change to the fan speed. These LED lights are bright though. If you're used to working in a cubicle farm with overhead fluorescent lights then you'll be OK with them. IMO, the white light of the LED in the bathroom is much better than the warm yelllow light from the 1141 bulbs. http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/71a0S73PR4L._SL1500_.jpg height=240 width=320 http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31JoxTgJU2L.jpg height=320 width=240 Installation: The LED double pancake lights are virtually a direct replacement for the 1141 double pancake lights that I had. I was able to reuse the (aweful square-bit) original screws and wire nuts from the 1141 double pancake lights when installing the LED lights. The distance between the screw holes in the 4 corners of the LED lights are a millimeter or 2 wider than on the 1141 double pancake lights. Using the original screws and my fingers, I was able to nudge the screws into the original screw holes. This pleased me because I'm screwing into luann and high density foam. The pressure applied to nudge the screws into the original holes means that the lights are very well secured to the ceiling with virtually no chance of falling off it. In several cases I needed to use needle-nosed pliers to gently pull the wire nuts out of the ceiling/hole. In one case I could not reach the wire nuts and had to cut the wires on the 1141 pancake light. More on that in a moment. In the case of the single pancake light on the side of the cabinet in the cabover, after pulling the wire nuts out of the cabinet I had to use needle-nosed vice grip locking pliers to keep the wires from going back into the cabinet after removing the wire nuts. When I installed the new single pancake light on the side of the cabinet for the cabover, the screw holes did not line up with the screw holes of the 1141 single pancake light. I used one screw to install the LED light using one of the existing screw holes. I positioned it for level and tightened the screw just enough to keep it in place. Then I used a drill with a very small diameter bit to drill pilot holes in the cabinet through the other 3 screw holes on the LED light. I then screwed the light to the cabinet using the 1 inch screws from the hardware packet, well... because I don't need 1.25 inch screws for the cabinet and the CA screws have crummy square-bit heads and the 1 inch screws have phillips heads. The trouble spot: Refer to the 1141 double pancake light on the ceiling outside of the shower door in the below picture. After removing the 1141 light, I discovered that the hole in the ceiling contained the 12V wiring harness for the rest of the lights. It was a nest of wires. I could not get to the wire nuts for the light. I had to cut the wires at the back of the 1141 pancake light and use then to connect to the new LED pancake light. A minor irritation -> PITA. The "fun" part was trying to neatly stuff all the wiring back into the ceiling so that the new light could be installed. Shipping note: I purchased the LED lights in 3 separate orders from Amazon - several weeks apart. 1st order: I bought 1 LED double pancake light - as a test case to see how well it installed and worked. In the Amazon box was the light in its retail box. The light was in a plastic sleeve with a hardware packet of 4 one inch screws and 2 small wire nuts. 2nd order: I bought 3 LED double pancake lights and 1 single pancake light. In the Amazon box were 4 lights, each in its plastic sleeve - wrapped in bubble wrap. There were no retail boxes or hardware packets. Although it is a w.t.f. moment, the lights were in perfect condition and I used the existing screws and wire nuts to install them. 3rd order: I bought 5 LED double pancake lights (1 is an extra). In the Amazon box was 5 lights, in their retail boxes with hardware packets. https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8447/7937521690_36f3f80f58_z.jpg
gotsmart 10/02/15 01:05pm Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Propane Extend-A-Stay

This is the Stay-A-While Deluxe: https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8426/7796513374_e038868e0d_z.jpg
gotsmart 09/29/15 10:42pm Full-time RVing
RE: New Class C owner stability control??

Few men are more expert in RV driving/handling issues than the Henderson clan in Grants Pass Oregon. I made it a point to visit there and saw it as a pilgrimage, those guys are that good. They install a lot of Roadmaster items and of course they make and install the Super Steer product line. I visited Hendersons Line Up and Super Steer while I was there, separate buildings at the same site. Oddly to me, they like the Safe-T-Plus steering stabilizer. I would have expected them to carry Roadmaster's Reflex stabilizer but didn't get into discussion of why. John Henderson did alignments for years, and did the E-Series with the additional caster discussed so often here. 5* left and 5.5* right, left camber +1/4*, right camber 0* and just a little positive toe. He said adding an S-T-P unit to the front was equivalent to upping the caster. That surprised me, yet it seemed they're doing less caster changes and more S-T-P installs. Anyhow, Reflex should offer the same benefits as S-T-P. I can see where it might be a little harder to adjust since it uses one coil spring in a push/pull setup vs. two coils in S-T-P where one spring extends as the other compresses. Just remember what I said earlier: Any stabilizer with springs MUST be installed dead center, or it'll introduce a steering "pull" that wasn't there before. Sounds familiar. It's what I have on my E450. http://forums.goodsamclub.com/Index.cfm/fuseaction/thread/tid/26960889/gotomsg/26994178.cfm#26994178
gotsmart 09/23/15 11:09am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Attention RV manufactures, I want only one KEY!!

If you have a Trimark door handle that supports Trimark's KeyOne™ Plus locking, then the lock and deadbolt can be keyed to the same key. Examples: MH & FW http://www.trimarkcorp.com/en/zPlatform.aspx?platformid=22&categoryid=12 http://www.trimarkcorp.com/en/zPlatform.aspx?platformid=152&categoryid=12 TT http://www.trimarkcorp.com/en/zPlatform.aspx?platformid=44&categoryid=12 http://www.trimarkcorp.com/en/zPlatform.aspx?platformid=45&categoryid=12
gotsmart 09/22/15 07:12pm General RVing Issues
RE: Membership campgrounds?

With any of the memberships, are you given a specific site number in advance, only when you arrive, or circle until you find a space where you fit? Does it differ depending on what membership or affiliation you have? Thanks! It depends upon the individual park. The park that I am in has 10 different site types, all based on site depth (or what size RV can fit). When you make a reservation the office staff will ask you for the length and type (MH, FW, TT, TC, Bus, van, tent) of your RV, and the number of slide outs. You will then be assigned a site based on that criteria. Guests can ask for certain sites and the staff does its best to accommodate. It is entirely possible that the site that was assigned at the time of the reservation may change - as site assignments may get reassigned to make the best use of the park. At another park that I've gone to a lot, almost all of the sites are the same. It used to be "go pick a site then come back to the office and register". It changed to "stop at the office, register and be assigned a site". This happened because some RVers would come in and get a preferred site location and then squat in the 2 or 3 adjacent sites and hold them for their friends who were arriving later in the day. This caused complaints, and a change in policy.
gotsmart 09/08/15 12:14am RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: Dicor...removing and putting on new with TPO roof.

I've used Pure Spirit Gum Turpentine. It melts through dicor, and silicone caulk as well. Be mindful when using it. It stinks very much. Everyone downwind from you will not be pleased with you.
gotsmart 09/07/15 06:38pm Beginning RVing
RE: steering stabilixer

Click on the links in my previous post. "j-d" discusses the benefits of the Safe-T-Plus for the stabilizer. In the 2nd link in my previous post I list the products by name, part number, and CW link: SuperSteer SS450 trac bar RoadMaster front sway bar Safe-T-Plus
gotsmart 09/03/15 06:07pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: steering stabilixer

A trac bar is for controlling tail-wag caused by the Jeep. I had a trac bar, front sway bar, and steering stabilizer installed. From a post of mine about the trac bar. In addition to the trac bar, some have also installed a rear sway bar.
gotsmart 08/31/15 09:43pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Getting credit card with no residential address

The Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001 (aka Patriot Act) predates my going fulltime (in 2011) by 10 years. My insurance(s), credit union, cell phone bill, pension, credit cards, yadda, yadda, yadda - all got changed in 2011 to my PMB. My drivers license is the exception. When I went to change the address I presented the clerk with my cell phone bill (with the PMB syntax in the address). She tried to use the PMB syntax and the computer system would not recognize it. So I said "What about using the # sign?" She said "Yup, that works." For me the take away was: if PMB doesn't work, use the # sign. If that doesn't work, use Apt #. Apparently, other than the USPS it matters little to everyone else.
gotsmart 08/27/15 10:26am Full-time RVing
RE: Getting credit card with no residential address

Yes, the Patriot act does hold lenders to a higher standard for customer verification. Credit cards are very often used to illicitly move money and fund nefarious conduct. As a practical matter, someone living in a post office box is going to be very hard to collect from should they decide to stop paying. Combine the two and getting credit without an address is going to be difficult. And using the street address for the PMB company isn't going to help. All bank software is sophisticated enough to ferret out those addresses as being mail forwarding services. Like it or not, it is a problem full time RVers have to live with. hmmm... I'm been using the PMB syntax on my street address for my BofA and AMEX credit cards since my 1st day of FullTiming. It's been several years now. No red flags. I must be doing something wrong.
gotsmart 08/26/15 11:55pm Full-time RVing
RE: sheesh...they don't make em like they used to!

I replaced my failed regulator about 2 months ago with this Marshall unit. http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31yIluE0BmL.jpg
gotsmart 08/26/15 07:53pm General RVing Issues
RE: Removable Solar battery maintainer for chassis battery

I'm currently working at an RV park and the parasitic draw in my E450 has already drained the chassis battery once. Two comments: 1) Why does this occur ? My E450 will sit for weeks and weeks and still be good. AFAIK the only parasitic drain is the memory for the radio and some engine computers. Try letting it set 4, 5, 6 months at a time without starting the engine. I'm a bit lazy in this regard during the dry season. You know the battery is dying when the cab's dome light won't come on or the power door lock switch doesn't lock the doors. 2)I really don't think that 5 watts is enough to do any actual good. It's enough. Read the product reviews in the Amazon link. I wanted a unit that is capable of negating the parasitic draw. The customer reviews indicate the 5W panel works fine for this purpose. If I had wanted more I would have bought a Battery Tender. The other reason for going with this solar panel is that it is not taking any amps away from the pedestal. I start mine every 30 days or so and let it run for 15-30 minutes. This charges both sets of batteries.....if I remember to throw the battery disconnect switch for the coach. My MH has no battery disconnect switches. It's plugged into a pedestal, so charging the coach battery is not a problem. I don't bother starting the engines (includes the generator) during the summer dry season here. I do exercise the engines in the winter rainy season about every month and a half - to cook the moisture out of them from the super-high humidity.
gotsmart 08/21/15 08:57am Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Removable Solar battery maintainer for chassis battery

How well is it working for you? What wattage solar panel? Is this to keep your coach battery topped? I have a TT but still interested in the post. It is a 5 watt panel. For details click on the very 1st link in the post. Yes, its purpose is to keep the chassis battery topped off. My coach battery is maintained by the converter, but it does not maintain the chassis (truck) battery.
gotsmart 08/20/15 11:44pm Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
Removable Solar battery maintainer for chassis battery

I'm currently working at an RV park and the parasitic draw in my E450 has already drained the chassis battery once. I put a battery charger on the chassis battery, charged it up and it came back to life. So I bought a 5W solar charger for the purpose of maintaining the charge in the battery. I wanted to hang it in a window to keep it out of the weather and from those discount shop at other people's RV sites. Here is my solution. The pictures are clickable so you can view a larger image and zoom in on it. Go Power! GP-SF-5 SUNfilm 5 Watt Solar Panel The windows in my Cruise America 28R have top and bottom wooden rails on which the curtains slide. This mod is specific to RVs with similar window shade setups. With this setup I can easily remove the solar panel before driving away. I can also move the panel to a window on the drivers side when that side is facing south. What makes this work is the fact the the cigarette lighter on my dashboard is live at all times. This lets the solar panel backfeed power into the chassis battery. One should unplug the solar panel before starting the MH's engine. I don't know if it will damage the solar panel, but I'm not going to find out. The solar panel's cord easily reaches the cigarette lighter port on my E450's dashboard. The robe hooks are hanging on the top rail. There are 4 holes in the frame of the solar panel for mounting purposes. The mirror clips are screwed to the back of the panel - with the hook facing the window. I used 2 pieces of 12 inch chain to distribute the weight better across the robe hooks. Material list for mounting (all from Home Depot): Over-the-Door Single Robe Hook in White (2 Per Pack) 6 in. L x 4 in. W Fixed-Mount Mirror Mounting Clips (4-Pack) (clips are actually 1 5/8 in. L x 1/2 in. W) #8-32 x 1 in. Phillips-Slotted Pan-Head Machine Screws (4-Pack) #8-32 Coarse Stainless Steel Nylon Lock Nut (4 per Pack) #8 Stainless Steel Flat Washer (12-Pack) #100 x 1 ft. Black Decorator Chain (QTY 2 @ 12 inches each) https://farm1.staticflickr.com/627/20692929496_69bce8b7b1_z.jpg https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5764/20719174675_04be88914a_z.jpg
gotsmart 08/20/15 09:17pm Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Smart Car Supplemental brake

If I had known about the ReadyBrute Elite when I bought my smart car, I would have gone that route. I would have used the ReadyStop for the breakaway requirement. I went with a Roadmaster Falcon 2. At some point I may add a ReadyBrake (different from the Elite) to my Falcon 2. I may also add the ReadyStop as well. A smart car is very light - at just over 1,800 lbs (US). I like the simplicity of NSA's system in a smart car instead of a brake controller. Yes it is a surge brake, but it is simple to maintain and, IMO, the ReadyBrake system is more than adequate for a smart car.
gotsmart 08/19/15 05:31pm Dinghy Towing
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