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 > First time TT trip AZ to VA

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LizBee

Virginia

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Posted: 05/14/19 10:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hello,
My husband and I are in our 50's and are not new to long road trips and camping, and are also accustomed to driving large vehicles (my daily driver is an Expedition EL) and towing boats/trailers/popup campers.

My boss bought a 2008 F350 diesel (25k miles) with a 2012 28' Dutchmen TT that he needs moved from Tucson to Virginia, and since this type of road trip has been a dream of ours, we have volunteered. We'll fly from VA to Tucson, acquaint ourselves with the trailer and check things over (oil change, check tires, etc.). We're now starting to think of pertinent issues and are looking for tips.

Since we're flying out there we won't have things like camp chairs and groceries, of course, so we'll provision in Tucson and pick up a couple of chairs at Walmart for cheap to use at our stops.

We'll utilize GPS with RV setting as well as a trucker's road atlas to be sure we don't get into trouble with clearance, etc., and plan out our stops at RV parks where we'll be able to pull in.
We're not sure what the trailer has in terms of cooking utensils, bedding, etc. but we'll find out ahead of time.

Since the boss got the truck/trailer combo for about what the Ford is worth and planned to sell the TT, we're considering purchasing it from him, and this may become something we use frequently, so we're excited to explore this mode of travel.

Any tips for first-time RV'ers?

TIA
Liz

midnightsadie

ohio

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Posted: 05/14/19 10:39am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

sounds like a dream trip. check them tires real good ,have fun and enjoy the trip.p.s I,d take the back roads home ,freeways get old.

CA Traveler

The Western States

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Posted: 05/14/19 11:16am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Consider shipping some of your camping items to Tucson. Check brakes including trailer brakes. Plan on having to use back in sites not just pull throughs. Find a empty parking lot and practice. Walmart has cheap hand held radios that might be useful including use in large stores.

25K miles on a 08 truck would make me suspicious with all of the flooded vehicles on the market but that is a boss problem. Ditto for the TT.

Major checks before you purchase the trailer include chassis rust (salt) and water damage - ie soft spots. Maybe hire a professional as unseen repairs can be costly.


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LizBee

Virginia

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Posted: 05/14/19 11:55am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

CA Traveler wrote:

Consider shipping some of your camping items to Tucson. Check brakes including trailer brakes. Plan on having to use back in sites not just pull throughs. Find a empty parking lot and practice. Walmart has cheap hand held radios that might be useful including use in large stores.

25K miles on a 08 truck would make me suspicious with all of the flooded vehicles on the market but that is a boss problem. Ditto for the TT.

Major checks before you purchase the trailer include chassis rust (salt) and water damage - ie soft spots. Maybe hire a professional as unseen repairs can be costly.


Thank you for this good info! We know the owner of the truck, as it happens, and he has had serious health issues that has prevented him from being able to use the truck and trailer, but it has been sitting a while, which makes us nervous. We plan on having a mechanic look it over before hitting the road. Fortunately, where they are in Tucson there is not much concern about rust, but one never knows. Our friend in Tucson who is storing the rig for us until we get out there is experienced pulling and backing horse trailers, so we'll practice with his guidance out there before we leave.

We could ship items ahead of time, and that will be a great option once I find out what they already have available. Great tip!

CA Traveler

The Western States

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Posted: 05/14/19 01:19pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sounds like you could get a nice RV. Pull the steepest hills you can find in Tucson and if there is a gen run it with full loads. While Tucson is low humidity moisture in the diesel fuel is possible due to condensation. Consider an additive.

The golden diesel rule is use higher volume stations and not small ones with limited turnover. AZ truck lanes have additional truck tax which doesn't apply to RVs. So if you use them be sure to tell them before the pump is started. And check the truck fuel fill size as truck nozzles are larger than gasoline.

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Posted: 05/14/19 01:29pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

A couple of other thoughts, maybe practice hooking up to the tt and breaking down as though you are leaving. Remove all the leveling equipment, hoses and electrical service, then move to around if you like, then go through the whole leveling,set up procedure (hoses, (fresh ,gray and black water), electrical servicea couple of times making notes about the particulars. Also how about sleeping in the rig a couple of nights before you go, that way you will have things set up after a day on the road. It not difficult just new to you. Most all the fellow Rvers I have had the pleasure of meeting when on the road were always more than willing to help when I had questions. Take your time and enjoy yourselves.


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Lwiddis

Near USFS Glass Creek CG, Inyo County, CA

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Posted: 05/14/19 01:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

"trucker's road atlas to be sure we don't get into trouble with clearance"

I doubt height will be an issue. Have fun!


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wanderingbob

monticeeo, fla

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Posted: 05/14/19 02:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I kinda believe that you may be over complicating this ! Check ever thing and take off , if ya need something there are plenty of Wal-Marts . You say that you have expedience pulling trailers , this will be easier to move than short boat trailers . These guys will have you taking classes and buying new tires for what is really an average road trip !

wanderingbob

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Posted: 05/14/19 02:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I kinda believe that you may be over complicating this ! Check ever thing and take off , if ya need something there are plenty of Wal-Marts . You say that you have expedience pulling trailers , this will be easier to move than short boat trailers . These guys will have you taking classes and buying new tires for what is really an average road trip !

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 05/14/19 03:13pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Tires is a concern though. I wouldn't bolt across country on original 8-9 year old trailer tires that cooked in Arizona. Make sure they're not the original trailer tires.
Actually truck tires will be shot too unless it was garaged the whole time or has newer tires.

Noone knows what kind of shape everything is in, from an internet post. Could/should be perfect/like new with those low miles, but I'd take a test run before pointing it east. 50-100 miles drop the hammer, run it hard, make sure nothing obvious is wrong.


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