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    SW Florida
  • Interests
    Fishing, shooting, and motorcycle riding.
  • I travel

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  1. 10 Year Age Rule In RV Campgrounds

    I have only come across a couple parks that either have that 10 year rule, and/or bring it up. Like someone already said, some parks may have it in place so they can refuse service to some folks. We like to utilize a public park back in the general area where most of our family is located. It is a small park on a river owned by a park district. They don't have the 10 year old rule but they certainly should have. Over the years they began to get full of full timers in old TT's, fivers, and coaches. They are one of the few RV facilities in Illinois that have sites open in the winter months. At $330 a month (including electric) it was a cheap place to live and the park eventually turned into just a run down trailer park. They have started to turn that around by closing the park from December 1st to April 1st. This forced all the "trailer park non-RV" residents to leave. Many of them had to hire someone to move their units and some even abandoned them. If the park district would have had the 10 year old rule and enforced it they would have never gotten into that situation in the first place.
  2. I think there are many folks out there that just don't want to part with a few bucks when it comes to brakes, or many safety issues related to toads. Part of getting our new 24' enclosed ready for full time towing was installing a high quality brake controller in the coach, upgrading and adding sensors to my TPMS, and this week I am shopping for higher rated tires because I am just too close on my weight for the D rated 8 ply tires that came with it. So by the time I buy a new spare/rim plus a new heavy jack, I will spend between $1,400 and $1,500 so I can safely pull this new trailer.
  3. Best Route Nashville To Tampa

    My GPS has encouraged me to cut off of I-10 a couple times onto Rt. 19 to cut across, just never have tried it. May be worth trying this spring with heading north.
  4. Best Route Nashville To Tampa

    X2 on staying at Deer Run. It has been a couple years since we visited them but they used to either give you a bag of fresh popcorn or a cup of coffee when you checked in. Very nice folks. Several years ago we booked there 2 nights. The second night they were suppose to get a bad storm so we took off that morning. The owners gave us a night's credit we could use the next time, which they honored a few months later. How many CG's could you find that would do that?
  5. Fifth Wheelers With Computerized Jacks

    That was a big factor the first time we sold out and went full time in our decision to go with a fiver instead of a MH. I had a small contracting business and due to some favorable tax incentives I could write off a bunch of my new F350 diesel in the first two years. The way I looked at it my 2012 (new back then) F350 cost me close to $40,000 instead of over $55,000. Like your Rancher buddies, it only made sense to have a fiver back then.
  6. Fifth Wheelers With Computerized Jacks

    Welcome STINGER. My last fiver (Montana) had auto level and it was a "must have" for us.
  7. Upgrading Suspensions F53 Chassis

    Carl, there is absolutely no comparison between driving my previous 37' gas MH and this Ventana. I could have put $20,000 into suspension upgrades on the old coach and there still would have been no contest. Buddy of mine just went through some part of Texas last week in high cross winds in his Ventana 4369. He sent me a text message and said it was no problem and it was a relaxed day behind the wheel. In my last coach driving under those conditions I would have felt like someone beat the crap out of me by 2pm.
  8. Best Route Nashville To Tampa

    To me I-65 south to Montgomery, then US Rt. 231 down to I-10 is the best route. There are no steep grades going this way and you avoid Atlanta. For us, usually going all the way to Cape Coral area, it adds about an hour to the entire trip. US Rt. 231 is about 99% four lane divided and almost all new pavement in the last 3 years. You do go through several small towns but that is part of the reason we like going this way, it breaks up the trip by not being on interstates the whole trip.
  9. Upgrading Suspensions F53 Chassis

    I only had my 2014 37' gas coach for about 18 months. We did go up north twice plus out west for the summer in it. I can only tell you my short experience with the F53 chassis and how we modified it. First of all I did the CHF (cheap handling fix). I won't go into great detail about it but you can do it your self and videos are on-line to explain it. I also weighed my coach loaded and adjusted my tires accordingly. These two things probably improved the handling of the coach 20%. When semi trucks passed or we were in a 20mph cross winds it was still uncomfortable driving. Next I had the Safe-T Plus installed. I had it done at their factory up by Atlanta because we were going to be in that area. It actually helped a little but the coach was still like driving an overloaded bread truck. I would estimate the Safe-T Plus improved handling another 10% or more. I then ordered and found an RV repair place to install the Sumo springs. Having the Sumos improved the handling by at least 30% or more. They were by far the best improvement we made, but they were not cheap. Anyway, after almost $2,000 of modifications the coach handled about 60% better than it did when I first purchased it. If we wouldn't have decided to go full time and needed the towing capacity I probably would have done a trac bar on the back and stuck with it.
  10. Found The Coach

    I'm heading down to North Trail this morning. My plan is to get inside another new coach and inspect that seal. If mine is hanging down and not fitted right then I'll have to decide if I should break out some double sided 3m tape or see about having a Whirlpool tech pay us a visit. I may also sneak back into the work bay area and snag a tech for some free advise. This entrance door is driving me nuts because I have to really slam it in order for it to close tight. I am out of ideas on ways to adjust it. Herman, I may not share with the DW that I'm still convinced I can fix the entrance door.
  11. Check Out Our New Verizon MIFI Benefit!

    When FMCA first introduced this plan I was a brand new FMCA member. We were just getting back to full time RVing so at first it looked like something we could take advantage of. Then the first few members tried to sign up....OMG, what a joke. Then I realize that you have to be locked into 2 additional years of FMCA membership to sign up for the Verizon plan. To me that would be like driving 30 miles a week to save $2.00 on a tank of cheaper gas. Passport America and Escapees are clubs worth signing up for IMHO. Even if you are not full timing you will probably get your annual membership back in CG discounts within the first month or so each year. I'm just not seeing much value in renewing in FMCA. RichNjohn good luck if you continue to pursue the FMCA discounted Verizon plan.
  12. Found The Coach

    It is a Whirlpool. When I looked last night there is a little more ice forming at the front bottom of the lower freezer compartment again. The book said something about a drain pan but there isn't one under the freezer. If there was suppose to be one under the freezer drawer then it would certainly have to be about 1/2" tall for the drawer to clear it. The bottom rubber seal on the freezer door looks to me like it is hanging down, so right now my bet is on this seal is not attached correctly. To be honest I would rather drive down to the next exit and have a salesman put me inside another Ventana so I can examine that freezer seal. If my seal is coming off I would rather re-attach it myself. The DW will probably start getting upset with me and my resistance to have the dealer fix this stuff.
  13. Found The Coach

    We have the factory warranty for another 10 months. We also have a secondary warranty that extends out to 5 years. We have only done one weekend trip. Probably once I get everything finished on the trailer we will take off again. To be honest I'm thinking of just picking a good Walmart about 200 miles away and spending an overnight there. I can get a feel for a little dry camping and battery usage plus burn some more diesel and DEF.
  14. Found The Coach

    Been in the new coach for almost 2 months now. Only made one weekend trip (150 miles) so far. Overall the workmanship and quality of this Newmar has not disappointed me. Not that there haven't been a few minor issues but I was expecting that due to the fact it was a new RV. So far I have been able to avoid taking it back to North Trail. The five minor issues have been: 1) washer malfunctioned after just a few loads. Factory tech did house call and it worked fine. He claimed it was "user error". 2) chrome trim piece came off above left headlamp. Thick 2"x14" piece of chromed metal was never formed correctly. I cleaned all the old 3m tape off, formed it correctly, and re-installed. 3) this week started getting small amount of water from under shower pan. Finally determined it was from defective silicone job when installing waterless trap. I removed old silicone and replaced with new, problem solved. 4) entrance door has to be slammed really hard to close tight. I have made a couple minor adjustments and am still working on this issue. This could be the one adjustment that forces me to take it back to North Trail. Haven't given up yet though. 5) equipped with 3 door frig (bottom freezer). Noticed some minor ice build up under the freezer compartment. Got it removed and waiting to see if it comes back. Could have been there since delivery, or we could have a bad freezer seal, waiting to see if we will need a Whirlpool factory tech to pay us a visit. Even though I am less than 10 miles from North Trail (selling dealer) I refuse to keep making appointments and taking the coach in for stuff that I can fix myself. Since we are full time and will be traveling constantly after leaving Florida I certainly don't want to be always searching for a Newmar dealership to fix small stuff or make adjustments. So far there is absolutely no "buyers remorse" here! We love our Ventana.
  15. Everglades NP visit

    Not sure if you are staying in the everglades area of not. Obviously you need to do an airboat ride while in that area. There are tons of vendors to pick from. Not much in Everglade City and they are still recovering from Irma. I ride my Harley from Ft. Myers down to that area about every two months. Usually run Rt. 41 all the way across to Café 27, which is outside of Miami. I make numerous stops along the wide grassy areas on Rt. 41 down there to walk the sides of the canal and look at gators. My goal is to get a good photo of a really big one. So far the biggest one I have a photo of is about 15' tip to tip.