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 > Your search for posts made by 'urbex' found 14 matches.

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  Subject Author Date Posted Forum
More detail on pre-purchase check - fridge,water heater,etc?

I've been browsing ads for a new-to-me truck camper. I've always bought projects in the past, for dirt cheap, knowing that they would need extensive work before being usable as I was always flush with time, and short on money, lol This time, however, I want to buy something that's more or less ready to go. I'm still not in a financial position to be able to buy something brand new, though. I've read through many buying guides, which all say something to effect of having the seller go through all the systems to verify functionality, but never in much detail on the checks themselves. Obviously checking things like AC power, DC converters, water pump, AC, would be easy, but how does one handle things like the 3 way fridge, or water heater? Would a water heater be able to produce at least warm water in a few minutes, at least enough to be able to tell it's working? Or should I request that the seller light it off several hours before I arrive to ensure it's good and hot when I look at the camper? If it's a dual mode, is there any good way of verifying both modes work without tearing it apart? I've never owned a properly functioning RV fridge. I use a Norcold 12 volt compressor portable fridge in my camper now. I can usually feel the cooling coils getting cold inside of a few minutes on that one just to verify it's working (as opposed to an overnight pre-cool to chill the whole box)..would an absorption fridge be the same way? Would I just turn it on in AC mode for a few minutes, feel the coils inside getting cool, shut it off and let it get warm again, then repeat on 12V DC and LP modes? Or does it really need to go for hours to get cold? Same thing - should I/we be turning it on while looking at it, or the night before? Or is this all just going to one of those cases where you pays your monies, and you takes your chances?
urbex 02/08/18 03:35pm Beginning RVing
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Never mind...can't delete.
urbex 01/24/18 12:52pm Truck Campers
RE: Towing 5K-6K with mid 90's Class B?

Wow...a truck designed to pull 80K for a 5K trailer load? My '90 F350 does just fine with the 3000lb camper, 1500 pound flatbed, and that 6500 pound truck on the trailer behind it. I just didn't know if the suspension/drivetrain was all that different on the Class Bs compared to a pickup. But never mind...I'm unsubscribing anyways. There's no point in having my email ding for those kinds of answers.
urbex 12/01/17 12:28pm Class B - Camping Van Conversions
RE: Towing 5K-6K with mid 90's Class B?

5k,6k is a whole lot ,might rethink just how much extra stuff you need. In my world of fun, it's really not. The combined weight of the trailer and the Samurai is around 5K, and that's the light weight toy. My current trailer is around 2500lbs empty. Add weight of tools, spare tires and other parts, trailer winch/battery, storage boxes, tie downs, extra fuel...it's pretty easy to hit 6K loaded. The big toy weighs around 6500lb by itself, but I wouldn't be planning on hauling it behind a B-class.
urbex 12/01/17 09:07am Class B - Camping Van Conversions
Towing 5K-6K with mid 90's Class B?

As I inspect my Amerigo truck camper for the extent of water damage and associated rot, I'm realizing it's going to be considerably larger project than I had originally anticipated, and likely will be a year-plus project for me now. Being that virtually every truck camper I've owned has ultimately turned into a rot infested nightmare. I'm not all that wild about buying yet another one, and I'm not spending what a new one costs due to infrequency of use (I'm still in that part of my life where I'm working full time, and often putting in 50-60 hours a week, so my camping is often limited to local overnighters) I've started thinking about picking up a Class B this time around while I work on the Amerigo. Except that I'm probably in the atypical camp - I'll need to tow a trailer+load that will weigh in the 5K-6K pound range. Load is a Suzuki Samurai off road toy, and flat towing is absolutely not an option - There's a decent chance of catastrophic level damage on every run, and the weekend I broke an axle housing in two was the last time I ever flat towed it any where. Due to budget concerns/frequency of use, I'm looking at early to mid 90's units, though at this point, I'm not looking at any specific models/chassis. I would assume I'd want something on a 1 ton chassis, and at least a big block V8 or V10 motor. Given what I've been spending to maintain my current F350 diesel, I'm also not that wild about getting another diesel motor, regardless of fuel efficiency. Is this even a feasible option in general for the 90's era Bs, or am I going to end up on a snipe hunt trying to find one with enough GCWR to pull this off?
urbex 12/01/17 05:17am Class B - Camping Van Conversions
RE: Carry Samurai with small 'hauler? Front beds?

I'm not necessarily stuck on the smallest things I can get, but it will be just me traveling for the forseeable future. I'm a single guy with no kids, so I don't have a need for a house on wheels. Rather just a place to sleep, and make dinner inside if needed. I also don't want to end up with a super heavy trailer if I can avoid it. I'm sure the truck will handle it just fine, but why lug all that extra weight around if I don't need to? The front bed desire was because when I'm traveling, I typically drive until I get tired, then look for a place to stop and sleep for a while, which often will be well beyond closing time of most camp grounds, so I stop off a random Forest Road somewhere. At that point, I just want to walk into the camper, and go to sleep without unloading the rear or other major set up. In days gone by, when I would be sleeping in the bed of the truck, I always made sure to have the sleeping area open so I could just climb in the back and go to sleep. So all that said, I'd rather step up a size class or two if that's what it takes, I just don't want to end up with some kind of 39 foot multiple slide monster of a trailer, lol.
urbex 05/17/17 01:09pm Toy Haulers
Carry Samurai with small 'hauler? Front beds?

I just recently completed the 1st half of a 4500 mile road trip, in my Chevrolet Volt, sleeping in the back of the car. I also learned that my claustrophobia has gotten MUCH worse, to the point that I had to sleep without the air mattress in the back (and it was still iffy at that point). While I haven't yet tried it, I suspect this will also be an issue in the cab over section of my two truck campers, so I'm looking at other potential options. Right now I'm considering extending the flatbed of my truck, and making it so I can put my Suzuki Samurai up there along with getting a small bumper pull travel trailer. Or, getting a small toy hauler, something around say a 24 footer, and putting the Samurai in the TH instead. That said, do those smaller ones typically handle a 2500lb load in the back/on the ramp gate? Also, seems like the few I've seen on Craigslist so far have all been rear bed models, in that the toy(s) would have to be unloaded to go to sleep. Is that the common way, or should I be able to find a front bed model as well?
urbex 05/17/17 12:01pm Toy Haulers
RE: Cross country trip from Arizona to Michigan via Colorado?

and while it was 70 degrees at Idaho Springs, it was nearly blizzard conditions at the top. So with the mountains you just never know. That does remind of the last time I came down from Detroit to Phoenix...nice and warm coming through Oklahoma City and Amarillo, and nearly wrecked the car going through Gallup due to the sheet ice all over the roads...high horsepower muscle car and icey roads are NOT a good combo, lol. While I should have known, having been an Arizona resident for quite a few years at that point, the elevation change never even crossed my mind. I think I'll make it a point to get one of my ham radios in the car tomorrow so I'll have easy access to the weather radio stations.
urbex 05/06/17 05:09pm Around the Campfire
Cross country trip from Arizona to Michigan via Colorado?

In a week, I'll be setting off on a trip from Phoenix, Arizona to Traverse City, Michigan, and back two weeks later. Normally, as I'm not at all a fan of cold weather, and a desire to avoid Illinois altogether, I typically take the I40 to Nashville, then north into Michigan. Reverse on the way home. I've done this a few times now, and have gotten pretty familiar with the trip (and it's a largely boring drive through the southern states). This time around, I have a few extra days to play with, I'm thinking about going a different way around, but as I'll be driving my Chevy Volt, I'm a little concerned about running into snowfall. The car sits pretty low, and I haven't even seen snow in over a decade, much less driven in it. My current plan is to leave Phoenix and head north to Flagstaff, then taking the 160 through the reservation towards Moab, Utah to I70 towards Denver. Take I76, then I80 out towards Iowa City and northwest through Madison, Wisconsin, Green Bay, then follow the shoreline of Lake Michigan through Escanaba, Mackinaw City, Petosky, and finally down into Traverse City. I know I should be OK by this time of year in Michigan, (may see the occasional flurry, but unlikely to see any significant snow accumulation) and I'm assuming it would be similar in Wisconsin, Iowa, Nebraska. It's the mountain passes mainly in Colorado that I'm concerned about having never been that way, and I hear Denver can see snow all 12 months of the year. I'm looking at current weather reports, and it looks like Denver will be having weather far too warm for snow. But then I'm looking at some webcams that I believe are current for Vail, and it looks like there is snow on the ground in many areas. So I'm hoping some people familiar with areas will chime in here :P
urbex 05/06/17 12:40pm Around the Campfire
RE: Replacing ancient Suburban water heater with new?

I knew of the style differences between brands, and expected to replace it with a new Suburban (bonus - they're cheaper anyways!). Extending wiring and gas lines are simple if need be, especially compared to changing the opening size. I did take a closer look at it yesterday, and was able to easily punch a small screwdriver through the crud, which let all the water drain out. I also noticed that it didn't actually break the drain tube, but did mangle the first thread or two so that I couldn't just screw a new fitting on. The tube appears to have a pretty thick wall compared to typical plumbing pipe, and I'm thinking I may be able to run a pipe tap into it and just use a NPT plug to seal it off if I can't get the threads cleaned up on the outside. It's definitely not an anode, or the remnants of one. The drain valve on it has a rubber disc that's connected to a screw on the inside, with a hole drilled on the side of the valve. The valve screws on to the end of the drain tube, then the inner screw is run in to press the rubber disc up against the end of the drain tube. Run the screw back out, the disc retracts, and the tank water drains out of the little hole. I looked at new anodes at the RV parts store, and there's no good way that I can see to retrofit one either.
urbex 03/21/17 06:54pm Tech Issues
Replacing ancient Suburban water heater with new?

So I'm pretty sure I just caused terminal damage to my water heater... I have a 1974 Amerigo truck camper, with a Suburban G 602, 5.7 gallon water heater. I attempted to drain/flush it, and got nary a drop when I opened the drain, but did get some water out of the safety valve on top when I opened it (water heater hasn't ever been on since I bought the camper last summer, so it wasn't hot). I figured it was just clogged with crud, so I took a socket to the drain valve to get it off and clean it....and promptly snapped it off the drain pipe...oops. The drain pipe is also packed full of calcified stuff, so I figure it's likely safe to assume there's plenty more in the tank as well, and previous owners likely didn't maintain it well. That said, are these things fairly standard in size? As in if I get a new Suburban 6 gallon model, it should drop in the same size hole? Or are they like the refridgerators where there are a million different sizes, and I need a specific model to retrofit this old stuff?
urbex 03/19/17 07:04pm Tech Issues
RE: Sources for vintage style waste tanks?

ASSume it the same there--around here there are lots of old truck campers for sale in the various "used" sites and papers. People just trying to get rid of them instead of paying to have them taken away. Parting them out first often happens. I got a second tank same as the original for our 1981 camper that way and rigged it up as a grey tank. ( Possible with the 11 ft camper hanging out the back of the truck.) I did get "creative" with the plumbing :) You can repair those old tanks depending on what leaks. Roof Dicor fixed ours in a couple places. There's a large crack right at the drain opening radius into the tank body, along with some missing chunks. It appears to be the result of plastic embrittlement (which doesn't surprise me, as I assume this is the original, 30+ year old tank). There are also several layers of fiberglass and epoxy over the cracked area, from the previous owner's attempts at fixing it. He said he was lucky if the repairs held for an entire weekend. If I put some time into it, I could form a sheet metal patch that would be form fit to the area, and use some epoxy to seal it up, but I figured for the couple hundred bucks it would take to put a new tank in, it wasn't worth the hassle of attempting to repair it yet again. I'm also thinking that given the heat and dryness of the desert (I live in the Phoenix area), most old tanks are likely going to be in the same condition as what I have now. Not necessarily cracked, but definitely well down the road of being brittle. This is only the 2nd Amerigo I've seen like mine in the past few years of looking for one, and neither of them have been anywhere even remotely close to free. Not to mention, I ended up scrapping one of my prior campers due to rot being much more extensive than I realized when I bought it, and getting rid of all the stuff I didn't want was a pretty big undertaking. Hardly worth getting a free tank, lol.
urbex 03/15/17 02:46pm Tech Issues
Sources for vintage style waste tanks?

I need to replace the black tank in my '74 Amerigo truck camper, and given the location, I don't have much variance in the width dimension. I measured it as 23" wide at the flange, and 40-something inches long. The width takes up every bit of space between the far back wall, and the shower drain on the other side, but I could go another 30 inches or so longer if need be. It also screws right through the flange, and the new style tanks I'm seeing specifically say not to drill/screw through the flange or it will leak. I think I'd have to go considerably narrower to accomodate any kind of mounting hardware, and I haven't seen any narrow, yet super long tanks (so I don't lose capacity). Are there sources for similar style tanks for these old campers, or am I going to have to get really creative?
urbex 03/14/17 08:55pm Tech Issues
RE: Leaving the TC world for a trailer

I too do the TC out of necessity, not desire. Most of the time I also have either a Suzuki Samurai, or an International Scout in tow with me on camping trips, and a toy hauler capable of handling a 5,000lb 4x4 is way, WAY out of my budget. I briefly considered a doubles setup, with a small TT plus the car hauler trailer behind it, but really didn't want to find myself in area at some point that takes a dim view on RV'ers pulling doubles.
urbex 03/13/17 12:21am Truck Campers
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