Thursday, October 13, 2011

Toad, Load OK? Inspections. RV Tires. Locks. Fire. CO Fumes. Tom Mix. John Denver. Cargo Trailer.


Bumper Snicker:   On back of motorhome:

"Poor Mileage for a Vehicle. Great for a Home."



How to know the car behind your motorhome is tracking properly: blogger Jim Twamley passes along a neat little trick he uses when driving his motorhome to make sure the dinghy he's towing is tracking properly. After you watch this one minute video you'll think "Now, why didn't I think of that?" Click the video to play.


Keep an Eye on Your Rooftop Load

"We've found a strange dichotomy in the desert southwest: RVers carrying kayaks. Not sure where they're using these things--maybe on the way "down and back." In any event, there's got to be a little anxiety now and then when traveling--how do you know if your rooftop cargo is staying where it ought?

Enter CargoView Mirror Company's overhead hauling utility mirror. It's one of those, "Gee, why didn't anybody think of this earlier?" things. A magnetically mounted convex mirror unit you set on your hood, up in plain sight of the driver (or shotgun rider). A quick glimpse in the mirror tells you when it's time to pull over and relash your stash.

Equipped with a "scratch free pad" said to prevent any finish damage, the overhead hauling utility mirror can be pulled off and stuffed in the glove box when you don't need it. Price? $22.95 plus shipping and handling. Order at:



Always start road trip with inspection.

"Preventive maintenance and proper tow hitch help avoid hassles when you take to the highway.

Summer vacation is the time most of us dream about relaxing at the beach, not being stuck on the roadside with car trouble.

The key to a safe, trouble-free vacation is making sure that your vehicle is properly maintained and, especially if it's a few years old, given a pre-trip mechanical and safety inspection."


...with Mark Polk

Q. "I am at a quandary about my tires. My tires are "245.75R 22.5". Before going on a trip or continuing the following day I might notice that a tire is in need of air. Usually we are about 5 miles from a truck stop or a fuel station that can service my coach. By the time or distance covered to reach the service station the tire or tires needing attention will have heated up, and I think will give a false reading. What to do? I have a small 110V air compressor that I carry. Supposedly the control goes up to 100 psi. but I do not think it can handle my size tires. Another thought is to purchase an air cylinder containing about 2200 psi. and can be carried in my tow vehicle. Can I get your thoughts on this situation? Thanking you very much in advance."

Mark Says: "Solving this problem requires an understanding of how portable air compressors are rated. I carry a pancake style air compressor with us in the RV. It's at the other garage right now and I can't think of the brand, but there are models available that will work. It struggles a bit, but it does add air to our 22.5 tires when they need it.

Here is a link to an article I wrote on the subject that might be helpful in selecting an air compressor that you can take with you to add air to your tires while the tires are cold."

___________________ Craftsman compressor (Small)

PS: Howard Payne and I both have the same Sears compressor, the 150 PSI one.  It works great for the large RV tires.  I even use air tools with mine.

Here is his mention of it:



With this tool you'll never have to pay a locksmith again.

Loose your only key to your car car door? Find a lock on something and you don‘t know where you placed the keys to it?

Don‘t pay those pricey lock smiths when you can do it for yourself with the same quality tools they use!
In fact this tool was invented by a professional locksmith. This Kwick Pick Lock pick is an all in one integrated unit. It comes with a retractable lock pick,which is replaceable, and a tension wrench that also doubles as a pocket clip. Great in any tool box and makes a fun gift for your criminal friends.
Features & Specifications

  • One Year Warranty

    Fits comfortably in your hand

    Easy to use design

    Spring-loaded sure lock

    Retractable pick

    Tough aluminum alloy design

    Combination tension wrench/pocket clip

    Invented by a professional locksmith

    RV Toy Outlet has it for $17.99.


    Of course you don't know who else has one, too!! 



  • Handling a kitchen oil fire in your RV

    Jim writes: "When I was a kid I was frying something in oil and the pan caught fire. I didn't know what to do. My mom got a hot pad, grabbed the pan, and put it in the sink under running water. This caused the flames to erupt into a fireball and ignite the curtains. My dad came over with a towel and beat out the flames."

    So how do you best handle this type of fire. Find out.



    Did You Know... RVs Pose Carbon Monoxide (CO) Dangers?

    "Modifiers may not properly seal or vent sources of carbon monoxide gas (either from the engine, exhaust or generator). RV manufacturers may also fail to install operational CO detectors and CO alarms. In other instances, the equipment may installed, but a manufacturing defect (like a crimp or faulty weld) may permit the toxic gas to escape.

    A carbon monoxide safety resource provided these carbon monoxide safety precautions for RV's, motor home and caravans":

    Complete article at:




    I thought yesterday's journal was too long to include these two events in history.  So here they are:

    Silent-film star Tom Mix dies in Arizona car wreck; brained by "Suitcase of Death".  Oct 12, 1940:

    "On this day in 1940, cowboy-movie star Tom Mix is killed when he loses control of his speeding Cord Phaeton convertible and rolls into a dry wash (now called the Tom Mix Wash) near Florence, AZ. He was 60 years old.

    On the day he died, Mix was driving north from Tucson in his beloved bright-yellow Cord Phaeton sports car. He was driving so fast that he didn't notice--or failed to heed--signs warning that one of the bridges was out on the road ahead.

    The Phaeton swung into a gully and Mix was smacked in the back of the head by one of the heavy aluminum suitcases he was carrying in the convertible's backseat. The impact broke the actor's neck and he died almost instantly. Today, the dented "Suitcase of Death" is the featured attraction at the Tom Mix Museum in Dewey, Oklahoma."


    Now you know why all items, people, pets and/or their carriers, should be lashed down, or seat belted in.


    John Denver dies in an aircraft accident, Oct 12, 1997:

    "To those who bought records like "Rocky Mountain High" and "Take Me Home, Country Roads" by the millions in the 1970s, John Denver was much more than just a great songwriter and performer. With his oversized glasses, bowl haircut and down vest, he was an unlikely fashion icon, and with his vocal environmentalism, he was the living embodiment of an outdoorsy lifestyle that many 20-something baby boomers would adopt as their own during the "Me" decade. There never was and there probably never will be a star quite like John Denver, who died on this day in 1997 when his experimental amateur aircraft crashed into Monterey Bay on the California coast."



    The cats were on the screen porch early this morning, but come 8.30 AM it was so humid, that they had to come back in, doors and windows closed, and the AC was turned back on.

    Jay and I worked some more on getting the inside lights mounted under the shelves in the cargo trailer.  We made little pieces of trim with a groove in the back so that it would cover the wires coming from the chase in the ceiling down to the shelves.  There are still so many little things still to be done to the trailer!

    Jay brought some pie with him that he had bought the day before, he said it was cheese pie !?  He wasn't wearing his glasses, it was CHESS pie, and too sweet to eat. 

    The upholstery lady called and she quadrupled her original price, so I am seeking another way to get these cargo trailer dinette cushions covered.  I might try to do it myself, after all.


    Three drops of rain fell, and it was a nice, but warm, humid day.

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