"if you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much room"

Friday, February 28, 2020

Winter has been a B....

Well, I guess what did I expect for winter in South Dakota 😒. December was snow and cold, January was snow and bitter cold, February has been a repeat of January 😞.
OK, enough of that, we did have some fun when we went to Disneyworld for a week the last of January! AHHH

We had a wonderful time and some much deserved R&R.

Oh ya and we bought a new rig:

Well it's new to us anyway, it is a 2012 Montana 3750FL. So we back into a Montana and very happy with it so far. We bought it the week before the trip to Florida and then winterized it again when we left. No big issues except for a couple of internal cold water line freeze ups when the temps got down into the sub zero range a few nights. Hopefully we are past those for this winter and can get it skirted and heated by next winter (if we are still here 😏 ).
We still have the Motorhome and will be selling it soon ....I hope. We have it priced right so are hopeful it won't be long so if you know anyone that wants a nice dependable class A diesel pusher  suitable for full-time living send them my way. We are asking $29,000.00 which is very close to trade in value so we can get it gone. 605-440-0696

Hopefully the weather is changing for the better and we can get this snow melted. We are looking forward to a nice summer. I'll keep you posted.

Friday, October 18, 2019

all right.... I confess!

Work has been changing the last couple of weeks. We had our last fairly large event last Monday, Native Americans Day here in South Dakota. I spent the entire afternoon standing watch over 200 or so middle school students who had waaaaaay too much caffeine LOL. The endless amounts of tour buses that show up during the Spring, Summer and Fall are slowing way down so Winter must be right around the corner.
We have also waved "see ya later" to most of our work campers :-( Never a good time watching them roll out for their winter adventures while we stay here, but our turn will come again. We always look forward to next spring when some of them return and new ones arrive. 

This week we had a mobile glass installer come out and put in a new windshield in our rig. We have probably only driven our rig a total of 20-30 miles in the last 6 years so how did "we" manage to break our windshield? Good question! I would like to say it was from hail, or maybe a falling meteorite or even an alien attack but no .....I did it, I confess the awful truth and here is the long, sad tale :-(
One of the drawbacks of our motorhome is the smallish size fridge and freezer. We really envy those 4 door (or bigger!) fridges they are putting in RV's these days, you know the ones that actually keep ice cream frozen! So in preparation for moving back into the RV I bought one of those 12 volt, 120 volt freezer/refrigerator combo units that look like an oversized beer cooler. The thing works really well and keeps our ice cream frozen and our veggies cool but the only issue is where to put it. I initially thought about one of the outside compartments, you know the one with the power and TV hook ups that you never hook the TV up to? LOL This would be a little inconvenient especially in the winter .....brrrr. Then I saw the huge flat area of the dash and that 1 watt light bulb dimly flashed in my head! I can sit it there! Looks like it will fit perfectly and I can run an extension cord ....perfect! Of course I never measured it to make certain .....I am a man after all and men know these things just by looking! Well I stretched the extension cord to the dash, picked up the cooler and "presto" in it went......except the very back corner was kinda caught on the windshield curtain. There goes that dim bulb again ......it told me "just wiggle it a little" so I did and it dropped right into place.....perfect! I wonder what that little popping sound was??? Well you know now that the popping sound was the windshield cracking. Crap! I knew from prior experience that insurance pays for "stupid" so we filed a claim and THAT is why these guys were here yesterday replacing our windshield.

So now life is slowing down a little for us as we settle in for the long winter. We are meeting friends tonight at the local VFW for steak night. Anyone who has lived in a small town knows what an event Steak Night is, certainly not something to miss out on! Oh ya, Rudee has forbid me from taking any advice from that dim light inside my head, she says to just ask her instead? I'm not so sure about that but I'll keep you posted. :-)

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Getting settled in for winter .........BRRRR!

The last few weeks we have spent our days off getting the rig ready for winter. I was so relieved that everything in the RV still works. No leaks, fridge is cold, hot water is hot and the furnace blows hot air. We only used the rig maybe 4 times in the last five years so we were both a little nervous. With the basics done it was time to do the stuff necessary to survive the cold and snow. First thing was getting the rig skirted to block that cold winter wind. We considered several options, even custom made, but that was out of our budget. We could have done the foam insulation board but wanted something that not only looked decent but would last us for more than one winter. We decided on EZ Snap RV skirting do it yourself vinyl skirting. We had used this product before on our 5th wheel and liked it, not the cheapest route but 1/3rd the price of having a custom skirt made and installed. We placed an order and in less than a week it was at our door and ready to go. The install took us two days to accomplish and we are pretty happy with the results. Our outer storage areas are covered (personal decision on our part, less trimming and easier install) so I removed everything I thought we may need and put that in our storage unit or the back of my truck. We left a seam near our sewer dump valve compartment so I can easily access those and our wet bay is actually under our slide out so it can be accessed, if needed, by pulling up a corner and crawling under. Here is what it looks like:

While doing the skirting the local LP gas company showed up to fill the tank that our campground owner is letting us borrow. This will help a bunch this winter since they will come out on regular intervals and fill our tank. Last time we wintered here in the RV I had to lug a 100 lb bottle to their shop when it got low.

The next project was water. The hydrant has already been wrapped with heat tape by the campground and I had made a heated water hose from an older white drinking hose, a heat tape and insulated it with foam. Well I attached it (or tried to!) and it was about 6" too short. I could connect it OK but it was stretched to the point of being off the ground ....CRAP! I decided to leave it connected and supported it with boards but definitely not something I wanted to leave long term plus the water had a "rubber" taste with this hose so Rudee made it very clear to me, "this needs to change". We decided to go with a Camco Heated Hose we found at Camping World. They are good to -20 degrees and all I had to do was hook it up, no more "manufacturing" on my part.

Next thing we did, well actually we did this before hanging the skirting, was to put lamps in the wet bay and another in the bay with the black tank valves. Several years ago we spent Christmas at my daughters in Indiana and the valves in this bay froze as well as the "dump" plumbing. We ended up driving half way to Florida with full tanks before things thawed enough to dump. That's a long way to drive with your legs crossed, tapping your foot! Just ask Rudee 🤣
I put a wireless thermometer in the wet bay and the lights have been working great keeping the temps in the 60's - low 70's when it's in the 20's at night. For our "stinky slinky" we wrapped that with aluminum foil and taped a heat tape onto it and then wrapped the whole mess with insulation. I cut a PVC pipe to length and we snaked the whole works through the pipe to give it some extra protection.
We also put two heat lamps under the rig that are plugged into a Thermo Cube Outlet that comes on at 35 degrees and off at 45 degrees. This will provide a little more freeze protection under the rig.

Last, but not least, we covered our windshield with Reflectex insulation. This stuff is easy to work with, just cut it to size with scissors and tape into place. The good thing about this stuff is it not only holds the heat in but also helps keep it cool in the summer by blocking out the radiant heat from the sun coming through.

So that's our winter prep, we are hoping we have done our jobs and we can make it through.....I'll keep you posted!