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Open Roads Forum  >  Class A Motorhomes

 > Any advise for our first trip with our Motor Home

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racer99

channahon

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Posted: 02/21/12 06:47am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

One thing we found real helpful was the book NEXT EXIT found it at Barnes & Noble-As long as you are on an Interstate Hwy it will tell you where the gas station are and if they are RV friendly-Diesel or gas or both -places to eat and alot more--I think you ought to just go and enjoy the MH if something is going to fail you'll have to fix it or have it fixed anyhow--#1 thing to beware of TIRE AGE other than that go slow and at the speed that you are comfortable driving at --if you are going to slow they can go around you --They are NOT going to send you a christmas card anyway--Be safe & ENJOY-Rich

rolling_rhoda

South Dakota

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Posted: 02/21/12 07:43pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Know your height for low clearances, and when driving remember to look up for low hanging branches, canopies, etc.

If your wife will, (and you are a patient teacher), teach her to drive the motorhome. Otherwise you could be only a sprained ankle away from being stranded. It helps if both of you can set up and take down also. Practicing hand signals for backing and parking is a good idea, too.

No matter where the coach is, it's probably in someone's way. Smile and wave. People probably aren't as bothered by it as you think.

Sneak along a small bottle of champagne, two glasses, and a special dessert to surprise your bride on your first night on the road.





Yankee Clipper

Cairo, GA

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Posted: 02/22/12 09:35am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Think of this as a "shake down cruise." Expect to find some things are loose or not working correctly, and be prepared to do a little troubleshooting. Take some basic tools and a volt/amp meter.
Expect to find mysterious switches, and experiment a bit.
Use check lists before getting underway and setting up so things happen in the correct order (e.g., level, then extend).
Remember, things will get easier with practice. Relax and enjoy.


Yankee Clipper
1997 Coachmen Catalina 330MB on F53/Ford 460efi
2004 Dodge Dakota 4x4 Quadcab 4 down toad/Roadmaster Falcon2 with EvenBrake
TireMinder TPMS
Not overly concerned about depreciation with this rig...

johnwalkerpa1

Pennsylvania

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Posted: 02/22/12 08:01am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

LennyH wrote:

All I read about ever now and then is Parking in Wal-Mart, since my wife and I are new at this maybe someone can tells us why they park in the Wal-Mart park area? Are we missing something here?
We just can’t understand why someone would want to park there with car’s coming in and out of the area all night, and people walking about, WHY!
You know you spend all that money on a Motor Home and you park at Wal-Mart? It’s just like people who buy a boat and never leave, the dock WHY?
I guess there must be something we are missing.

Happy RVing


I think you'll find that most people aren't choosing Wal-Mart as a destination spot

But, it can be a convenient and easy place to pull in late at night to rest and then leave early the next morning. I typically only use it when I am trying to make miles from point A to point B and am stopping soley to sleep, not to "camp". And, of course, if I need supplies anyway, we can kill two birds with one stone....

racer99

channahon

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Posted: 02/22/12 08:51am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

LennyH-I totally agree with you-we spend a ton of money on the MH and yet we look at Walmart parking as a way of saving money I guess--We normally are looking for a place to stay early evening before it gets dark so we got time to hook up eat & relax--I suppose if your not retired and on a vacation where time is of the essance then you drive till it gets dark then park (AT WALMART) then get up early and on the road again-It probably would help if you told us if you had a week to work with or a month-If only a week then Walmart might be something you'd use if going far south as FLorida--Different strokes for different folks--BUT we do most of our shopping at Walmart also Rich

LennyH

Pennsylvania

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Posted: 02/22/12 07:48am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

All I read about ever now and then is Parking in Wal-Mart, since my wife and I are new at this maybe someone can tells us why they park in the Wal-Mart park area? Are we missing something here?
We just can’t understand why someone would want to park there with car’s coming in and out of the area all night, and people walking about, WHY!
You know you spend all that money on a Motor Home and you park at Wal-Mart? It’s just like people who buy a boat and never leave, the dock WHY?
I guess there must be something we are missing.

Happy RVing

Hjudge49

St. Augustine, Fl.

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Posted: 02/22/12 10:50am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Things are going to break! Put together a simple tool box with pliers, screwdrivers, adjustible wrenchs and side-cutters, a roll of Duck tape, some WD40, and some bailing or safety wire. You will also need a good multi-meter and a supply of the correct fuses for you coach. Those will let you make quick emergency repairs when needed. If you are mechanically inclined, a full tool box, a cordless drill/driver and appropriate drill and screwdriver bits will come in handy. Remember that most of the screws in your coach might need square bits. I also carry several water hoses, an air hose and chucks, coolant and oil, and several rubber bungie cords.
On packing: You will always take too many changes of clothes. You can always do laundry. You will never have enough paper towels, toilet paper, soap, or ice. Our motto is "there's always a Walmart somewhere close by".
We almost never make reservations at campgrounds unless we know, or expect, that finding space will be hard because of some special event. On our last trip to Alaska, we had reservations at only two spaces: Calgary for the Stampede, and Denali because we knew it would be crowded. We carry a Woodalls, a KOA and GoodSam's directory and the laptop with air card. In the afternoon, we decide how much further I want to drive, and DW finds us a place to spend the night. we have never had any rpoblem getting a space, and DW insists on full hookups and, at 42 feet plus the toad, we like a pull-thru.
You should have fun.





royST

ann arbor

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Posted: 02/22/12 08:17pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Agree with the previous comments to first camp in your driveway to make sure that everything is working out fine. Next trip would be at a campground close to where you live. I'd recommend to invite a good friend whose also got an RV to join you and your wife to help you learn the ropes, and help you out.

LennyH

Pennsylvania

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Posted: 02/22/12 11:22am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hey here’s a up-date , My wife and I just hooked up or Odyssey to try for the first time to tow it around our area to see what if feels like towing a automobile…… First for us!
Well we didn’t lose our Odyssey so that’s got to be good…
We drove around and made some close turns, and had no problems with that, Then we tested it out of the highway at 65 MPH and I think it ran better pulling a load then with out one, We didn’t add any additional breaking to the unit, and we had no problems breaking at 65 MPH, The only question that I do have is, is it necessary to use the tow/haul button when towing?
Other then that everything seemed to work fine and it was enjoyable.

Am I missing anything??

Happy RVing

Halleycomet

New York

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Posted: 02/22/12 07:54pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Total Newbie here as far as our OWN RV future travels go BUT--
We traveled with a friend and he some how managed to rip the TOP of the coach by ignoring to look UP while driving thru a town on a well traveled local highway visited by many many semis every day also loaded lumber trucks and very large equipment trucks and manufactured home carriers. They had some how ALL missed this sign. So---LOOK UP and note where the business signs are. Costly mistake and this guy was NOT new at driving large Class A RV's.

Another friend had his electric steps develop a problem that they kept going IN and OUT at road speed. Quite fun and he had to pull a fuse to make them stop til he could fix them.

I am also looking forward to our first trip---eeeekkkk!!!!!---once we decide what to get and where to go! Thanks for posting these good ideas and advice.

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