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 > Your search for posts made by 'mkirsch' found 618 matches.

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  Subject Author Date Posted Forum
RE: will a group 24 and a 50watt panel be enough for 2 week trip

Making the battery bigger will only slightly increase the run time before it goes dead.
mkirsch 02/03/15 10:49am Truck Campers
Aluminum Body Panel Conductivity.

Supposedly my new Chevy Silverado has an aluminum hood. I haven't verified with a magnet yet but I have noticed an interesting phenomenon: The snow melts off the hood and front fenders when the engine is warm! It started snowing when I got home last night after work. Two hours later I went to get groceries, and the rest of the truck was coated in snow. I've never noticed it before on the steel-hooded trucks. There may have been less snow, but never no snow... This has to be because of the better thermal conductivity of aluminum vs. steel. Anybody with a new Ford notice the same thing?
mkirsch 01/30/15 11:57am Tow Vehicles
RE: I just cant get with this program...

A 5.0L Cummins? A V8 no less? What's the point? It's not that much smaller than the venerable 5.9L. Probably weighs just as much. The Fiat diesel in the 1500 Rams is a much better match for that size/capacity truck. It's a modified version of one of their medium duty commercial engines, so it isn't an all new design. It could prove to be a really great motor. In fact I'd be real interested in seeing it in a Ram 2500. I've had very good personal experiences with Nissan over the years. They went through a bit of a quality swoon for a while but seem to be back in good shape again. My guess is this Titan XD will suddenly make the Titan relevant again. It could be the greatest engine ever. That's not the point. The point is that is an engine that could run toe-to-toe with the Cumminses, Powerstrokes, and Duramaxes of just a few years ago. It is a heavy engine capable of moving a 13-ton rig down the road with prejudice, in a lightweight truck chassis capable of handling about half that. Taking up precious payload capacity. Burning unnecessary amounts of fuel. Good if you're looking for a hot rod. Bad if you're looking to actually use the truck for something.
mkirsch 01/28/15 11:34am Tow Vehicles
RE: Any actual experience with a Harbor Freight WDH?

You might have noticed I asked only to hear from people who actually used one; This was the reason. There are lots of opinions about HF products, but I only consider valid the opinions of those who have actually used this specific product ;-) For as you said, HF has some winners and some stinkers, and I don't believe one can adequately judge the performance of a trailer hitch by the performance of a solar panel. Others may not agree with that, but that's their perogative :-) That's not going to stop people from weighing in simply because you said the magic words, "Harbor Freight." In fact telling people that they should only respond if they have actual experience encourages the exact opposite... It's one thing I learned from being on forums for the last 15-ish years...
mkirsch 01/28/15 11:14am Towing
RE: Biggest truck camper not for f450 550

Finally, someone gave us a Reality Check! It is not all about the payload. Tires, brakes, steering and gearing are important too. Payload factors in tires, brakes, steering, and gearing so you don't have to think about those things. If the truck is designed to handle XXXXlbs of payload, then it is expected to keep that payload off the ground, stop the payload in a reasonable distance, allow the driver to reliably maneuver the payload under all but the most extreme of driving conditions, and accelerate that payload at a reasonable rate. Rated payload capacities on pickup trucks are well below the limits of tires, brakes, steering and gearing. It's when you start throwing aftermarket add-ons that change the characteristics of the truck, that you can get into trouble.
mkirsch 01/28/15 11:07am Truck Campers
RE: Most Succesful Pop Up Aussie TC : Going Strong

I can see where the whole shower/entryway design would not sit well with most Americans.
mkirsch 01/28/15 10:42am Truck Campers
RE: I just cant get with this program...

A 5.0L Cummins? A V8 no less? What's the point? It's not that much smaller than the venerable 5.9L. Probably weighs just as much. The Fiat diesel in the 1500 Rams is a much better match for that size/capacity truck.
mkirsch 01/27/15 09:49am Tow Vehicles
RE: The mysteries of Horsepower and other things explained

and without either one, you got nuttin... You got half that right.... Without torque you can't have hp Without RPM you can't have hp You can't have RPM without torque You CAN have torque without hp or RPM. And what will you do with torque and no hp or rpm? Round off the corners of the nut, or twist off the bolt.
mkirsch 01/27/15 09:43am Tow Vehicles
RE: Made for your half ton truck ;-)

The point I was trying to make is that I would think that the actual size and strength of the materials that make up the chassis are more important than the designation and payload rating. Good point. I would add along with the chassis is the rest of the package especially the suspension. The OP seem to lump all 1/2 ton trucks in the same pot. There is a big difference in 1/2 ton trucks capability out here. Maybe some day some folks will better educate themselves on what all 1/2 ton trucks can actually do. A 1500HD GM has a 8600 GVWR with 6084 RAWR load E tires and wheels. Same with the 1500 Mega Cab Dodge with a 8510 GVWR and 6000 RAWR with E tires and wheels. And of course Fords F150HD 8200 GVWR and 4800 RAWR with E tires and wheels. Any of these 1/2 ton trucks would be a much safer truck with the OP 2500 lb TC. The devil is always in the details. Would the rest of you please read this excellent post. No, because those are NOT "1/2 ton" trucks. Those are FAKE 1/2 ton trucks. They are really 3/4 ton trucks with 1/2 ton badging. Manufacturers have done this to appease HOA's who have rules against "heavy duty trucks," and to market to people who need more than the average 1/2 ton but for whatever reason are squeamish about driving a "big" 3/4 ton truck. The 1500 Megacab doesn't even count. The reason they put a 3/4 ton suspension underneath it is because the %$#@ thing weighs over 7000lbs empty. With the cab full of the size people it's designed for (i.e. 6 linebackers), it's pushing the GVWR if not over.
mkirsch 01/27/15 09:32am Truck Campers
RE: Biggest truck camper not for f450 550

Sorry, I'm on this forum every day and I have not once heard that you need an F450 for the heaviest campers. Some people USE them but that is a far cry from being told that you "need" them. In your apples to apples comparison, there's a whopping 131 pounds of difference between the payload of an F350 and an F450. I thought you were talking about several hundred pounds here... That's not even enough to quibble over. If an F450 collapses on a pile from being overloaded by 131lbs, you've got way bigger problems. My expectation is that the F450 will handle its 5069lb payload with no "helpers" while the F350 will sag badly under 5200lbs without airbags or some other form of helper.
mkirsch 01/27/15 09:22am Truck Campers
RE: Help! Foolish me playing mechanically inclined again.

If you can get two propane torches on it you might be able to get some heat to it, otherwise you need oxy-acetylene. Penetrants need time to work, if they're going to. Don't spritz it with PB Blaster then slap a wrench on it and expect anything good to happen. If something good does happen, the nut wasn't stuck to begin with. When time is of the essence, it's time to get medieval: Heat it, cut it off, or split it.
mkirsch 01/27/15 09:10am Truck Campers
RE: Adventurer 80RB vs 80W: does anyone use the 80RB shower?

I use my shower every morning that I'm camping. It's the primary reason for owning the camper IMHO. Propane use is a non-issue. It takes less than one 20lb tank for an entire season worth of camping. I run the fridge on propane, and only light the water heater when I'm going to take a shower. 10 minutes, and the water is the perfect temperature for a nice hot shower. Gray tank use is also a non-issue. With the right technique, you can have a satisfying long hot shower using less than 2 gallons of water. I can't make 5 gallons of gray water on a 4-day trip from the shower. I don't have either of these campers, I am just saying that it is possible to use your own facilities and be happy with the results.
mkirsch 01/26/15 11:33am Truck Campers
RE: Long Bed Truck/Short Bed Camper (modifications)?

A short bed camper on a long bed truck is not an issue as long as the truck is capable of carrying the weight. COG is not an issue, as long as the truck is capable of carrying the weight. At most it will be ~10" behind the rear axle which is well within the manufacturer's COG "zone." If the camper doesn't have "saddle bags" (rear external storage compartments) it can be slid right to the front of the long bed. With storage compartments, some sort of 18" spacer is needed to keep the camper from sliding forward and wrecking your bed. This spacer can be as simple or sophisticated as your imagination allows, and it makes a handy external semi-covered storage area for whatever you want to put there. Long bed camper in a short bed truck... It's been done but it's less than ideal. Long bed campers are typically designed to have the first 8' of floor supported, and may not hold up well to having 18" of floor hanging out with no support. The tailgate doesn't count as support, as all that's holding it up are those two spindly cables. Tailgates are just not designed to have 1000lbs of weight bouncing up and down on them for thousands of miles. Again, people have done it, and have done it with success, but it is less than ideal. You're much better off putting a short bed camper in a long bed truck than vice versa.
mkirsch 01/26/15 10:59am Truck Campers
RE: Do you leave your diesel running ...?

The traditional reason for leaving diesels running was the difficulty in getting them started in the first place! People just never got past it when glow plugs and reliable electrical systems were developed. That's how the old timers did it, so that's how I'm going to do it. Refusal to change. Find some of those "old start cold start" videos on youtube, and you'll see what I mean. Dad says they weren't much better when they were new. They had a couple of Massey Harris 44 diesels that they left on a hill because it was either roll them down the hill and pop start them, or get a gas tractor and drag them around until they started. The electric start was just not up to the task. Once you got one of those things running, you left it running until you were done with it for the day.
mkirsch 01/23/15 12:14pm Tow Vehicles
RE: F-150 to tow a light 5th - do I need HD cargo option?

I personally know at least three people who tried to make a go of it with a lightweight 5th wheel and non-HD 15-series (1/2 ton, F150, 1500, Tundra, etc.) trucks. Suffice it to say, when it came time to upgrade, they didn't buy 5th wheel again. Sure, these lightweight 5th wheels are 1/2 ton towable, and are even within the ratings, if all the stars are aligned: The right truck, not too much stuff, not too many people, loaded perfectly... Real people don't travel that way. Sure it works, nothing falls off, and nobody dies, but will you like driving it or will you be spending every trip wishing you had more? The RV and truck dealers *LOVE* it when they send you away with a rig that will have you wishing for more in a year or two. They figure you'll come back and upgrade.
mkirsch 01/23/15 12:01pm Tow Vehicles
RE: Using the Cabover in Freezing weather

If it's only going to get down around 20, I would put a small electric ceramic heater in the water tank compartment on low. In my camper the water tank compartment opens up to the sink compartment and then over to the water heater. With all the cabinet doors closed an electric heater should keep it nice and toasty in there without warming the whole camper. Unfortunately, my tank is hanging outside very exposed, especially with the camper off the truck. What the heck kind of camper do you have that's like that? If your water tank is outside, forget it. You're screwed if you try to use it without heat, and there is no practical way to keep it warm. Insulation only slows the transfer of heat, it doesn't stop it. If you leave a tank of water out in <32 degree weather long enough, it doesn't matter if it has 3 feet of fiberglass insulation, it will eventually freeze unless it has a source of heat inside the insulated space. Winterize it and live out of gallon jugs.
mkirsch 01/23/15 09:41am Truck Campers
RE: Made for your half ton truck ;-)

The debate keeps raging because people say that it absolutely cannot be done with a 1/2 ton, period. Then someone who hasn't paid a lick of attention to weights or ratings comes in and says, "I'm hauling an XXX with a YYY, and I have no problems." I'm at the point of, do whatever the %$#@ you want. Put that 5000lb Lance in the back of your F150 SuperCrew. Figure it out for yourself. I'm sick of trying to steer people in a sane/good/right/practical/comfortable/safe direction, and having it all thrown back in my face by someone who has rolled the dice and came out not a loser.
mkirsch 01/23/15 09:38am Truck Campers
RE: Made for your half ton truck ;-)

There was a 2015 and a 2014 parked side by side at the dealership two weeks ago when I priced out a new 2015. They didn't look any different in size to me, and I'm a pretty good judge of dimension, especially when things are right next to each other. Of course the Ford dealers are pretty proud of their new machines so Chevy smoked them on the bottom line by $6000. I got $4000 more truck for $2000 less than the Ford.
mkirsch 01/23/15 09:01am Truck Campers
RE: Using the Cabover in Freezing weather

If it's only going to get down around 20, I would put a small electric ceramic heater in the water tank compartment on low. In my camper the water tank compartment opens up to the sink compartment and then over to the water heater. With all the cabinet doors closed an electric heater should keep it nice and toasty in there without warming the whole camper.
mkirsch 01/22/15 02:40pm Truck Campers
RE: No pictures?

The X, whether black or red, indicates a broken URL to the picture. One or more connections between your computer and the place the picture is stored, is down, or changed, or just plain confused. In a system as complicated as this, it is hardly unusual. It's really nothing to get upset about, and there's no reason to start throwing conspiracy theories about heavy-handed Gestapo moderation around. I'm also in IT, and while it's preferable to test before roll-out, this is an online forum, not the electrical grid or the phone system, where a major outage may cost lives. You don't always have the resources to test before deployment, and management won't let you have them. Even if you can test, you can only test so much. Things still go wrong no matter how much testing you do.
mkirsch 01/22/15 02:36pm Forum Technical Support
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