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Old 02-26-2003, 05:04 PM   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: N.E. Ohio
Posts: 768
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Well I finally got a minute to give you guys a update on the first trip in the new rig. And it was AWESOME!!

We left NE Ohio on the 13th in a snow squall and headed for Cincinnati. I had myself worked up on over shooting a turn and having to back up with the toad and the Jake brake issue. Getting on the highway put me at ease and the 5 hour trip was great. That night we kept the weather channel on, and watched the ice storm close in on Southern Ohio & Kentucky. We pulled out at 7 a.m. and just squeaked by without getting in the ice, but the rain was brutal in Tennessee. We headed up the 4% grade in Tennessee and that was a snap. We pulled that grade in 10th gear 65 mph no problem, but what goes up must come down and that had me a little worried, specially with the rain. Well it turned out to be a non issue, the 4 mile 4% grade down; I tapped the brakes twice and left it in 10th. One problem I had was the company who had the truck previously set a max speed of 65 in cruise and 68 by pedal. I am going to have them remove that to do the 70 & 75 mph speed limits in the southern states. The truck is so stable and really feels comfortable at all speeds. We had huge cross winds in Tennessee & Florida and easily passed 50 plus various rv's from tt's to pushers who had a real problem with the wind. I felt it on real strong gusts, but it never knocked me around and it was so fun to just relax and blow on down the highway. We stopped in at my parents place in Englewood, Fl and picked up my Dad to help navigate to the first CG we where staying at. Well I screwed that up and had the wrong CG name (forgot all my info at work) so first we ended up in a small development which dead ended and was meant for a Yugo not a 40' RV. With all the neighbors out wondering who the battleship captain was, we finally got it backed up and headed back in the right direction. When we finally got in the right CG I stuck out like a sore thumb, bright white (after a bath) and 40' was a real attention getter. We easily had 5-10 visitors over the 4 days we where there and I was only at the RV for a couple of hours each day. Now, I want to include a little plug for my Big Foot Levelers. I did not realize this, but right where the rear jacks hit the ground, the CG had just dug a trench and put new water & electric lines in. The spot we where in was their rally area which was a sparse grass and sand base, and everything leveled up real nice. When we where leaving to go over to Disney I did notice we where pretty low in the back, and after having a better look had buried both back jacks completely in the trench. Thank god these jacks power up and in no time they came up without a problem. I love those jacks!

I plotted my course to the Tropic Palm RV Resort in Kissimmee using my laptop and used my Street Pilot GPS to stay on course. One problem for some reason Microsoft Streets & Trips 2002 showed 3 Tropic Palm RV Resort locations, I assumed the first one I saw was correct. (Never assume!) Anyway we found our self on a asphalt road which then turned into sand and very narrow. I should have stopped and called the CG at that point, but I am a guy and I know what I am doing. (Dang am I loser) Well finally my wife called and with a little sand dust we made it out of there and found the real resort. We wanted to stay at Ft. Wilderness, but we just did not know our plans until to late and the Tropic Palm turned out to be a great CG and worked out just fine.

They set me up on the corner of the main road so we got a lot of "oh my gosh that thing is huge!" "wow", "what? why? ect.. and again a ton of visitors asking all kinds of questions. We even had one of the Prevost boys come over and tell me he was a bit bummed out that we where steeling all of their thunder. All of the comments where positive and many guys with DP's where ready to sell their RV and pick one of these up. The biggest shock for most is seeing the interior, because we look like a truck, many think the interior won't be that nice. Believe it or not we even found 2 guys in the very back section of the CG that had some conversions that they had done most of the work on and it was fun checking each others rigs out. They where sold on Showhauler and plan to look them up when they are ready to trade in there rigs.

Other than a ground issue I seem to have there was not one problem I can find that needs attention from the Showhauler factory. The truck performed better than I could imagine, though I found a few items I will tweak before spring camping. I need better driving lights (to dim), new wind shield wipers (to small), replace an adjustable fresh air rod which rattles and that is it.

The ride home was way worse; we got caught in a major storm in Tn, Ky & Oh with flooding, tornados, and a snow storm. Winds where gusting to 50 mph, but the truck pulled through and other than creeping along the major mountain range in a blinding snow storm at 4 a.m. with the wife screaming it really was no problem.

I will say I will never do a winter trip again, unless we where having a major mild winter like last year. The rig is a sloppy mess and I am depressed beyond belief to be back in minus degree temps and over a foot of snow. This stinks!

Here we where at Venice Campground, the manage saw me pull in and told me there was no way I would fit in the spot he had for me. I brought my shoe horn with me. No problem.



This was at the Tropical Palm RV Resort.



And I almost forgot the best part. I finally figured the exact mileage today. We put 2,691 miles on and burned 264 gallons of fuel. That is 10.2 mpg which is better than the 9.5 I thought I would get. I am really happy that a 40 footer can get such good milage. I also noticed a very slight improvement in milage when using the Stanadyne Performance Additive vs. without it.


Bill

2003 28' Show Hauler Motorhome on a 1995 FL 120 www.showhauler.com

[This message was edited by warpath on March 03, 2003 at 06:48 PM.]
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