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 > Your search for posts made by 'tatest' found 697 matches.

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  Subject Author Date Posted Forum
RE: Importing an RV from Europe to the US

Bringing a motor vehicle in temporarily is fairly easy. Visitors from Europe, Mexico, Central America do it all the time, there is just some paperwork certifying that the vehicle is not staying. For import and registration in the U.S., however, you need the vehicle certified to meet U.S. FVMSS and EPA standards and pay import duties. Buying on the Transit doesn't help much, as the U.S. Transit does not have engines and transmissions in common with most overseas versions. Many European Transits are built with smaller 4-cylinder diesel engines, or a 2.3 liter gasoline engines, while U.S. Transits share gas drivetrains with the F-150; the 3.2 l Duratorq is the only engine in common, but comes with different emissions controls and a manual transmission in Europe, rather than the automatic used on all U.S.-made Transits. In addition, you will likely find that the Euro RVs you find most compact are built on front-drive Transits, which have not been safety tested for the U.S. You will find similar issues with RVs built on the Ducato (or the Citroen and Peugeot clones from France). Of the seven diesel engines used in the Ducato in Europe is the basis for the 3.0 liter Ecodiesel used for in Ram Promaster, but emissions systems may not be the same. The Pentastar V-6 automatic transmission drivetrain used by the Promaster is not available on Fiat/Peugeot/Citroen vans in Europe. Best bet might be something built on a Sprinter, as the 3-liter V-6 (OM642) is shared across European and North America Sprinter models, but again there might be emissions system differences. As for FMVSS, models that have been crash-tested as U.S. versions will have issues mostly with standards for lighting and safety equipment (e.g. the EU mandated rear fog light is illegal here) but those conversions have been fairly easily made, or at least were 10-13 years ago when my Ranger pickup went to Europe, got converted, brought back, and converted back to U.S. standards.
tatest 02/17/17 02:44pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: State parks?

Depends on where you are and sometimes the degree of "improvement" of campsite. Typically $14-18 for RV sites in state parks in Oklahoma (most have no entrance fees). I've paid $20 to $25 in Texas (plus $2 per head entrance fee), $25 for full hookups in Michigan (plus per vehicle entrance fees), $12 to $30 in Illinois (no entrance fees but rates go up for holiday weekends). I think you might encounter higher fees for public parks on the West Coast, particularly at beaches. If you regularly use state parks that have entrance fees, an annual pass is usually worth the cost. It certainly paid for itself when we were visiting the Texas parks while my daughter lived there. Where I travel, I more often use municipal or county park campgrounds, and USACE recreational access areas (which are usually half-fee for campsites with my Senior Pass so $16 a day drops to $8).
tatest 02/09/17 03:33pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: Free duplicate file remover

Some free solutions are rated here. These are for Windows/DOS. On Unix, I think I once did this (contents compare) with a shell script and the normally available OS utilities.
tatest 02/08/17 05:26pm Technology Corner
RE: New GM engine?

Not really from GM (built with aftermarket performance parts, including the block, which are loosely modeled on the Chevy big block). Not particularly new, as 700-800 HP normally-aspirated "street" builds of Ford, Mopar and GM big blocks have been around for almost 40 years. Can-Am racers were getting that kind of power from 7-liter builds, running 12 and 24 hour endurance races. Sprint Cup engines reached 850 HP from just 5.7 liters before Nascar started working on power reductions. I'm seeing 582's sold assembled at $9000 to $16,000 at this level of tune. A 800 HP probably would not be so useful as a motorhome powerplant, but a 400 HP tune of a 572-582 big block could be interesting, as it would be about the same level of tune as 340-350 HP from the 8.1 Vortec. GM is still selling the 572 crate motor, rated for 750+ at 6200 rpm.
tatest 02/08/17 05:14pm Tech Issues
RE: Replacing black water tank with freshwater tank.

On a Pace Arrow you will have to see if the tanks are accessible for replacement. Fleetwood went through a period in which they installed the tanks under the floor, atop the chassis framerails, in an enclosed heated space, for their "basement model" motorhomes. I've encountered this in Bounders and Stormies, have not dug into a '90s Pace Arrow.
tatest 02/05/17 09:08am Class A Motorhomes
RE: Looking for a place to camp N.E Ok. and Eastern Ks.

Have not stayed at Natural Falls. What is your route? If US-59, I can recommend Honey Creek SP in Grove, as well as Cedar Oaks RV Resort (our usual place on Grand Lake). Grove has several other commercial RV parks. Also on Grand Lake but a bit off the route for US-59 are Bernice SP on OK-85A (west of the lake), and Twin Bridges east of 59 on US-60. Both are somewhat remote from local attractions or amenities, compared to Grove. I've stayed at Twin Bridges a couple of times, and visited Bernice SP several times taking a "shortcut" into Grove (coming from the northwest). Campsites at Bernice are on the lake, while Twin Bridges has a small "fisherman's camp" on the lakefront with the rest of the campgrounds up on the bluff. If you use OK-10 to go north from I-40 there is a really nice SP at Greenleaf Lake (between Gore and Braggs), a nice Corp Park at Strayhorn Landing on Tenkiller Ferry Lake (a bit east of 10 on 10A), Sequoyah SP (to the east of Wagoner on OK-51), then ultimately you connect with US-59 going into Grove. Basically, the whole area between US-59 and US-69 is filled with reservoirs on the Arkansas River system, each with several Corps parks and in many cases state parks. This thins out as you get into Kansas, but there are still places to stay. Along US-169 there is the Walter Johnson (municipal) Park north side of Coffeyville or the Santa Fe municipal park at the south edge of Chanute. The first is about $10 a night, the second was free for your first night, last time I checked. The other big section of camping in Oklahoma will be where the Arkansas River swings west and north out of Tulsa, going toward Wichita. Most of these are west of US-75, east of I-35, on Keystone Lake, Skiatook Lake, and Kaw Lake. Headed toward Omaha, however, I would consider these areas to be well out of my way. I've not checked out what might be along US-75 in Kansas, as my usual route north is 169. My experience is that most counties in Kansas have a small fishing lake, at which you might park an RV, but will have no designated campsites or utilities. Along US-75 in Oklahoma there are state parks at Okmulgee Lake and Dripping Springs Lake, a RV park in Bartlesville (full of snowbirds just now), and a Corps park on Copan Lake (which has a small non-reservable year-round RV section at Washington Cove. There is also a question of "when" because on some of the possible routes there are a number of nice Corps parks, but those are mostly closed to camping until the volunteer hosts start showing up in March. At the state parks in winter you might find campgrounds open but water may or may not be turned on. The commercial parks in Grove stay open through the winter. If you access Oklahoma state park information on travelok.com you will see a green button "Book RV Campsites." That will usually lead you to believe there are no campsites available. What it really means is that there are no campsites to be reserved, because in most OK SP campgrounds the RV sites are all "first come, first served."
tatest 02/05/17 08:08am RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: dumb newby dumb question

What does the Edge owner's manual say about dolly towing. Most AWD cars cannot be dolly towed, but some can be towed four wheels down. Thor's Vegas is built on Ford's E-450 bare chassis with the 6.8L V-10. This is usually rated 22,000 pounds GCWR, the motorhome is not likely over 15,000 pounds loaded, leaving about 7,000 pounds of chassis capacity for towing, enough for an Edge. But what the Vegas motorhome can tow depends on what Thor has done with respect to modifying the frame and attaching a hitch receiver. Thor will have their own tow rating. 3500 and 5000 pounds are common. 3500 is not enough for a SUV as heavy as the Edge, 5000 could be marginal if the car is loaded with cargo. Hitch receivers with higher ratings are available for the E-450 chassis.
tatest 02/01/17 01:29pm Dinghy Towing
RE: Mississippi River Road

The Great River Road is one of the road trips included in Jamie Jensen's "Road Trip USA." This is now up to 7th edition. I have the 4th and use the book extensively for trip planning and dreaming.
tatest 02/01/17 01:03pm Roads and Routes
RE: Life Expectancy of new RV

10-15 years is easy with proper maintenance and care in use and storage. However, failure to do seam maintenance, combined with outdoor storage in a wet climate, can ruin a RV within a couple of years. In our part of the country, a single severe thunderstorm can ruin it, which is why I pay a premium for covered storage (which also helps protect it from UV damage).
tatest 02/01/17 11:04am General RVing Issues
RE: Gas stations adapting with charge infrastructure for EV's.

It will be interesting for sure to see how the technology advances. I still think the biggest hurdle will be fast charging. Even 30 minutes for abut 170 miles (Tesla's Supercharger rate according to them) of range isn't going to satisfy most travelers. I considered electric for my last commuter car, but the prices just didn't work for me. Are you sure this station is in Holland? It has a very American-looking parking lot with all of the US vehicles not to mention the very American-looking school bus in the background. Still a cool shot with the max use of the solar for typically wasted space. That's a Union 76 station, a brand owned by Phillips 66 Company, marketed on the West Coast of the U.S. With the solar arrays, most likely this station is in Southern California or Nevada. Phillips 66 brands in Europe are JET in UK, Austria and Germany and COOP (joint venture) in Switzerland, no stations of any brand in the Netherlands, though we had chemical plants there. I'm not seeing any charging stations in this picture. Phillips 66 is putting in solar on company-owned stations where it works. Thirty years ago we put in LPG fueling, where it worked, mostly at Phillips 66 stations in areas where LPG was produced locally. That was a joint venture between our Refining and Marketing division and a wholly-owned LPG company.
tatest 02/01/17 10:46am General RVing Issues
RE: motor home mpg

It depends more on size and chassis or platform than brand. Best MPG will be a Type B, a camping van conversion. MPG might range from 19-22 for diesel motorhomes on Sprinter, RAM Promaster or Transit down to 12-15 MPG for B motorhomes on Chevy Express or (no longer made) Ford E-Series. Promaster and Transit vans with gas V-6 engines will be somewhere in between, as will campers built into the VW T4. Small Type C motorhomes on diesel Sprinter or Transit platforms might give you 12 MPG or better. Winnebago builds a Type A motorhome (Via) on the Sprinter platform that might get MPG in the same range. The Vegas is built on the E-450 with V-10. Pushing a motorhome size box, this combination might average 7 to 9 MPG depending on wind conditions and driving speeds. My 29-foot C on E-450 with V-10 has averaged 8.3 MPG over 30,000 miles. My worst fill-up was 4.2 MPG, the best 12.0 MPG (must have been a tailwind day). Larger motorhomes on F-53 chassis tend to do only slightly worse, 6 to 8 MPG. Small (under 26,000 pound) diesel Type A motorhomes do about the same as gas motorhomes in the 20,000 pound to 24,000 pound range. As diesel motorhomes get bigger, they do worse, mostly because the owners tend to use the extra power available to maintain higher speeds. A 60,000 pound motorcoach with 600 HP diesel might get 4-5 MPG on the highway, but folks spending in excess of $2,000,000 for their motorcoach don't worry so much about fuel costs, it is like dealing with the cost of operating a large motor yacht or a private plane. If you are concerned with fuel costs for something in the size of the Vegas, consider the Winnebago Via as an alternative. But for the extra $50,000 initial cost of a Via, it will take a lot of miles for the fuel cost savings to pay you back, e.g. 500,000 miles if it saves you ten cents a mile.
tatest 02/01/17 10:23am Beginning RVing
RE: Used Jaycos

Redhawk is a fairly new name from Jayco. The Greyhawk name was around for much of the first decade of 21st century, either entry level or sandwiched between Escapade and premium Granite Ridge line. Before that, you will find Jayco's Eagle brand on C's. Jayco has also used the Melbourne name, formerly for their B+ on Ford chassis, more recently on a C on Sprinter chassis. Jayco is historically a lower volume producer of C's than Thor's Fourwind division (selling Fourwinds, Chateau and Dutchmen brands), Fleetwood (Tioga and Jamboree), Coachmen (Freedom, Freelander, Leprechaun) or Forest River (Sunseeker and Forester), all of which supplied the rental industry with model lines positioned below the Greyhawk in price, trim and features. Jayco was in this market only briefly with the Escapade line. Availability used will also depend on where you are looking. For a long time Jayco had less extensive dealer coverage, both regionally and in sheer number of dealers because of having exclusive territories. Thor got around this by offering three essentially identical brands so dealer territories could overlap. You will probably find more used Jaycos in the Great Lakes region than here in Oklahoma.
tatest 01/28/17 05:42pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: San Antonio, Tx on the way home.

On a short visit we would usually go to El Mercado in the morning, for breakfast first, then shopping. We think the Alamo is best visited late morning to late afternoon, the Riverwalk in the evening (although restaurants and bars get quite crowded then). If you have transportation, consider visiting some of the other missions on the Mission Trail. Hop-on hop-off will also take you to a couple of them, particularly the park headquarters mission. Check on what is going on while you are there. There is always something going on in SA. Events Schedule. What's best about San Antonio are the people and the events, more so than the places to see. There might be something that interests you, there might be something that draws huge crowds you might want to avoid at a place and time. On a winter visit when we were getting homesick for China, we particularly enjoyed the Asian Festival (February 4th this year). The Alamo schedules family events that draw large crowds (usually on Saturdays). Between the restaurants on the Riverwalk and those in El Mercado, San Antonio can be a great foodie place. In the RV, we've stayed at Traveler's World. Most of my many visits have been non-RV: hotel stays on business trips and family vacations, and staying with my daughter during the years she lived there.
tatest 01/25/17 10:30pm RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: Medical coverage while in Canada

While I am ultimately covered by my Medicare Supplement (N), that does not mean care providers are going to accept the card and bill to the company, it means I can seek to be reimbursed after I pay the provider. When traveling outside the U.S. for short periods, I buy travel insurance that includes medical coverage, including evacuation, for the duration of the trip. Depending on how the trip was booked, it might be Allianz or TripMate (sold through tour companies), but the most flexible provider is probably Travelex, who will tailor the coverage to specific trips.
tatest 01/25/17 01:16am Class A Motorhomes
RE: Best Ex-Pat area for full time residency

I am personally attracted to Hungary, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Romania, urban areas in all cases. But I've not investigated in depth, have stayed in the U.S. to deal with a cancer that popped up shortly after my last trip to Central Europe. These would be my choices because I like four seasons and urban living, and would want to be where I can freely travel all through Europe, but my financial resources are not up to the cost of living in any of the major urban areas in Western Europe (they are just fine for modest living in small town U.S. or living Life of Riley for much of Central or Eastern Europe, and much of Asia). Rome, Nice or Monaco would be nice, but I can't afford them. If I didn't want seasons, Singapore would be great, but I can't afford it and I'd probably get bored pretty quickly. I lived two years in Beijing and could probably just afford to live there, but wouldn't go back because the climate is brutal, very hot muggy summers, very cold winters, and population growth out of control. We are not particularly welcome as ex-pats in China, but if I were to go back to live, I'd pick Kunming because it is high-altitude sub-tropical, with a quite pleasant moderate climate, and one of the better managed municipalities in China. While I became comfortable with Chinese culture, their way of doing things, to the extent that it hurt me to have to come home, I'm not sure I'm ready to go back. Sounds like you are looking for someplace permanently warm. Costa Rica has one of the best legal and tax environments for ex-pats, but that is turning it into an expensive ex-pat enclave (but nothing like the cost of Singapore). Belize has the advantage of using English as the language for most business. Elsewhere in the warm parts of the Western Hemisphere, you need to become comfortable with Spanish as a language, and Latin American culture. Mostly it depends on money. For those with enough money, the top ex-pat communities in the world are Singapore and Monaco. But wealthy Europeans also flock to South Florida and Southern California as tax havens. I'm sort of assuming that you are not asking this as a RV question, because once you get past Mexico the feasibility of full-time RVing becomes more problematic.
tatest 01/24/17 12:05am General RVing Issues
RE: GAWR - Spartan rating vs. Axle mfr rating...

I can understand Newmar re-rating a 21,000 pound axle to 20,000 pounds, to stay within DOT maximum per axle ratings for the Interstate highway system. That's a licensing matter, more than physical capability. I'm not sure how Newmar would up-rate a 19,000 axle to 20,000.
tatest 01/22/17 03:44am Class A Motorhomes
RE: Towing mid-size truck

Mid-size, it would be 4WD Colorado (but not predecessor S10/S-15, which were compact). Some 4WD Dakota models were towable, those that had dual-range transfer cases with a neutral selection. Compact, it would be manual transmission Ford Ranger (and Mazda clone), late 1990s to the end of Ranger production. 2WD, 4WD, it didn't matter, the M5OD transmission itself was OK for a couple hundred miles before needing to be spun in neutral to splash lube around. I towed a 2001 Ranger for several years, mileage limitations not an issue because I was towing it 20 to 50 miles at most. Nissan Frontier manual transmissions were also OK, but I don't know the model year range. Toyota says "NO" but I know folks who had no problems pulling their old (pre-Tacoma) manual transmission Toyota pickups 20 to 100 miles at a stretch. Here we are talking about 20-30 year old trucks with 100,000 to 200,000 miles on them, nobody worried about whether or not Toyota will warranty this use.
tatest 01/22/17 03:39am Class A Motorhomes
RE: Good news for Texas...

I think Texas has a great state park system, and the fees are what make this possible. I live in a state where most of the parks are free of admission fees, and camping fees are low, but the parks tend to be more primitive and less well managed. I don't understand comments about non-resident fees. My experience is that the fees in Texas are same for residents and non-residents, unlike some states where only residents can buy annual passes, or there is a huge price difference in fees (as in Michigan where the non-resident daily pass is almost as expensive as the resident annual pass).
tatest 01/22/17 02:51am RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: New to dinghy TOAD towing

etrailer.com for prices on new equipment. Then look for it used at half price or less. Saturn S-series baseplate or towing brackets will be $300 to $450 new depending on brand and model. This part is a necessity. Used baseplates are hard to find, proper installation is usually meant to be permanent. It is probably easier to find a Saturn S with brackets installed than it is to find the brackets used. Rigid towbars range from just over $100 to $400 or more. If you get Roadmaster towing brackets instead of a baseplate because the brackets were $100 less, then you will pay about $100 more for a Roadmaster towbar, which includes the crossbar necessary to make the brackets a proper baseplate. If you want an extensible motorhome-mounted towbar for easy hookup, expect to pay $600 to $1000 for the tow bar (prices new). When I was shopping, I bought an $800 towbar slightly used for $400. Because it happened to be Blue OX, this meant buying a Blue OX baseplate, about $400 new for my Honda Fit. Towed vehicle braking systems add $400 to $1500 to the parts cost, cable-pull surge brake solutions at the lower end of the scale, permanently-installed active braking at the top prices, pedal-pushing boxes around $800-1200. Lighting solutions vary as well. I paid about $30 for a set of magnetic lights, high-end products are as much as $250. A lighting kit to hook up and use your existing vehicle lights might be $50 to $150 for the kit, before installation. Installation is a big part, probably more than half, of the estimated cost you are seeing from RV dealers. Baseplates can require a lot of labor, much of it removal and replacement of body parts on the towed vehicle. I did my own baseplate installation, it took me 10 hours spread over two days to do the job alone in my driveway over a July weekend. The dealer wanted $300 for installation, if I had it to do over again I would pay him. Permanent lighting solutions can be expensive on installation, as can low-cost surge brakes or permanently installed brakes. Solutions you have to install yourself every time you tow will have lower, maybe zero, up front installation costs. You could probably be ready to tow, without a braking solution, for under $1000 dollars, with the least expensive parts, if you can do the baseplate installation yourself. This might require buying a couple hundred dollars worth of tools for one-time use, particularly drill bits you will wear out. The dealers are giving you the price of a complete "luxury" solution, the one that provides the most convenience and least work each time you tow.
tatest 01/22/17 02:19am Dinghy Towing
RE: Which browser to use

Firefox is my first choice on Windows and Linux platforms, Safari on OS=X and iOS. I use Chrome on Windows and OS-X when I want to ChromeCast, and for access to a few Google applications where I am using Chrome-specific plug-ins or extensions. Everytime I open a browser on my Windows 10 machine, Microsoft reminds me I should be using Edge. Firefox is my first choice from 20+ years experience using browser of common heritage with Mozilla. Inertia keeps me there. But also, this is their only business. I don't want to get hooked on Chrome because Google has a history of discontinuing or replacing products and services (mostly acquired from outside developers) after a short market life. Chrome is fairly lightweight, with respect to computer resources used, and is not a bad choice if it is supported on all the different platforms you use.
tatest 01/22/17 01:38am Technology Corner
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