Thursday, August 30, 2012

RV Converter, Inverter, Charger? Solar Overview. Tribal Fuel Stops. Fridge Lock. Walmarting. Tire Dressings. Tree-lopping. Cleopatra.

For “tRaVersing, or RV day”:

Converter, inverter, charger -- What's what, and why?

“Rich Miller, the Wanderman, has been reading a lot in RV forums about converters, inverters and  chargers. And a lot of what he has read is wrong.  So if you are in any way confused about these terms, Rich will set you straight -- if you click here, that is.” From:


RV Solar Panel Installation Overview

“As we spend a fair amount of time boondocking (camping without hook-ups), solar panels have given us the freedom to enjoy the peace & quiet of remote locations without running our generator too much.
Since we already installed our panels on the RV (7 years ago), this is just an overview of our set-up, as opposed to a detailed tutorial.

We show the general layout and components of the system, including the panels themselves, the wiring and the solar controller. We also talk about the benefits of including a simple and inexpensive tilt kit, which allows tilting the solar panels up in the winter, when the sun is lower on the horizon.
Our first RV had two panels, which were permanently fastened flat to the roof, so they couldn't be tilted. We've learned a lot since then, and the new panels are tilt-able, and also use thicker 6-gauge wire to reduce loss along its length.

Be sure to confirm that all methods and materials used are compatible with your particular recreational vehicle. Every type of motorhome, motorcoach, fifth wheel, travel trailer, bus conversion, camper and toy hauler is different, so your systems may not be the same as ours.” From:


Tribal fuel stops: Are they a bargain?
”As you roll across America in your RV, there are several constants of our universe: You'll have to stop to refuel, and you'll run across plenty of casinos that offer "cheap fuel." Are the two compatible with your wallet?” Here are some thoughts.


Replacing a refrigerator door lock

If you're the proud owner of a "well-loved" older RV, you'll have run across the old "orphan parts" issue. Either the company doesn't stock your part anymore, or the company doesn't exist. Either way, when repair issues appear, sometimes you're left getting creative. So what do you do if you want to replace your lock. Here's an answer.

Yep, just a two-dollars and change brass barrel bolt. We pre-drilled through the metal trim under the door, and ensured that the screws were short enough not to cause trouble by running into anything vital. Now when we hit the road we simply shoot the bolt through the latch and head off. No more rolling cola.”


Staying overnight in an RV in a Wal-Mart parking lot

“Most Wal-marts will allow an RVer to stay overnight in their parking lots. When you are on a long trip and can't find any rest stops or campgrounds along your route, Wal-Mart starts looking pretty good. The important thing to remember when doing this is to do it the right way. So watch this short video, take some notes and then go ahead -- pull over and stay a night. The price is right: Absolutely free! They are one of the few retailers that allow you to stay in their parking lot overnight.”

“Road tripping is awesome; trying to drive when you are exhausted is not. Luckily there are several answers to this problem. For now, let's talk about one. Wal-Mart Camping! It's not my favorite place to visit. They are lacking in the eco-friendly and small business department, but they have one thing going for them: they are RV, truck and car camping friendly, and FREE!”      From:


A review of tire dressings

“Our RV Tire Safety Expert Roger Marble writes: "In a previous post I was asked for recommendations on which tire dressing to use. I decided to run a small sample test involving five different tire dressings. Now before you complain that I didn't include your choice you need to remember I have no budget for running tests or support or sponsorship from any of the products involved. I bought these products at retail." Read more.”


RVers beware of aggressive tree branches

Watch out for this campground hazard,
RV campgrounds are supposed to be RV-friendly, and most are, but some have an often-overlooked hazard that can cause serious damage to your RV. Although this hazard is in plain sight, many RVers fail to notice it because they're concentrating on the campground road when driving to and from a campsite. Continue.


Spontaneous Gardening in Our National Parks

Hitchhiker II RV sizePeople often ask us, “What do you do without a TV?” Well, sometimes, the best entertainment is just people watching in the campground.

For instance, last week at Acadia National Park in Maine, we watched in shock as our neighbor tried to get his 35′ fifth wheel out of the campground. This was a very tall rig. Nothing wrong with that, but as many of you know, many government campgrounds aren’t often designed for today’s RVs.  He came prepared. He went over to his storage compartment, and pulled out a pair of tree limb loppers.    Rest of article at :


Bill's Hints: Tow vehicle brake tip
"Applying tow vehicle brakes hard while the trailer is in the middle of a swerve will almost guarantee a jackknife and a rollover."


Random RV Thought
”Before turning your ignition key to leave on an RV trip, make sure any potential flying objects are secure. This is especially important in a motorhome where they could come flying at you in an accident or even sudden stop. A flying coffee mug could bonk you on the back of your head, maybe even poke a hole in it, which is very bad news!”


On This Day:  Now here is a history lesson!!

Cleopatra commits suicide, Aug 30, 30 B.C.:

“Cleopatra, queen of Egypt and lover of Julius Caesar and Mark Antony, takes her life following the defeat of her forces against Octavian, the future first emperor of Rome.

Cleopatra, born in 69 B.C., was made Cleopatra VII, queen of Egypt, upon the death of her father, Ptolemy XII, in 51 B.C. Her brother was made King Ptolemy XIII at the same time, and the siblings ruled Egypt under the formal title of husband and wife. Cleopatra and Ptolemy were members of the Macedonian dynasty that governed Egypt since the death of Alexander the Great in 323 B.C. Although Cleopatra had no Egyptian blood, she alone in her ruling house learned Egyptian. To further her influence over the Egyptian people, she was also proclaimed the daughter of Re, the Egyptian sun god. Cleopatra soon fell into dispute with her brother, and civil war erupted in 48 B.C.

Rome, the greatest power in the Western world, was also beset by civil war at the time. Just as Cleopatra was preparing to attack her brother with a large Arab army, the Roman civil war spilled into Egypt. Pompey the Great, defeated by Julius Caesar in Greece, fled to Egypt seeking solace but was immediately murdered by agents of Ptolemy XIII. Caesar arrived in Alexandria soon after and, finding his enemy dead, decided to restore order in Egypt.

During the preceding century, Rome had exercised increasing control over the rich Egyptian kingdom, and Cleopatra sought to advance her political aims by winning the favor of Caesar. She traveled to the royal palace in Alexandria and was allegedly carried to Caesar rolled in a rug, which was offered as a gift. Cleopatra, beautiful and alluring, captivated the powerful Roman leader, and he agreed to intercede in the Egyptian civil war on her behalf.

In 47 B.C., Ptolemy XIII was killed after a defeat against Caesar's forces, and Cleopatra was made dual ruler with another brother, Ptolemy XIV. Julius and Cleopatra spent several amorous weeks together, and then Caesar departed for Asia Minor, where he declared "Veni, vidi, vici" (I came, I saw, I conquered), after putting down a rebellion. In June 47 B.C., Cleopatra bore a son, whom she claimed was Caesar's and named Caesarion, meaning "little Caesar."

Upon Caesar's triumphant return to Rome, Cleopatra and Caesarion joined him there. Under the auspices of negotiating a treaty with Rome, Cleopatra lived discretely in a villa that Caesar owned outside the capital. After Caesar was assassinated in March 44 B.C., she returned to Egypt. Soon after, Ptolemy XIV died, likely poisoned by Cleopatra, and the queen made her son co-ruler with her as Ptolemy XV Caesar.

With Julius Caesar's murder, Rome again fell into civil war, which was temporarily resolved in 43 B.C. with the formation of the second triumvirate, made up of Octavian, Caesar's great-nephew and chosen heir; Mark Antony, a powerful general; and Lepidus, a Roman statesman. Antony took up the administration of the eastern provinces of the Roman Empire, and he summoned Cleopatra to Tarsus, in Asia Minor, to answer charges that she had aided his enemies.

Cleopatra sought to seduce Antony, as she had Caesar before him, and in 41 B.C. arrived in Tarsus on a magnificent river barge, dressed as Venus, the Roman god of love. Successful in her efforts, Antony returned with her to Alexandria, where they spent the winter in debauchery. In 40 B.C., Antony returned to Rome and married Octavian's sister Octavia in an effort to mend his strained alliance with Octavian. The triumvirate, however, continued to deteriorate. In 37 B.C., Antony separated from Octavia and traveled east, arranging for Cleopatra to join him in Syria. In their time apart, Cleopatra had borne him twins, a son and a daughter. According to Octavian's propagandists, the lovers were then married, which violated the Roman law restricting Romans from marrying foreigners.

Antony's disastrous military campaign against Parthia in 36 B.C. further reduced his prestige, but in 34 B.C. he was more successful against Armenia. To celebrate the victory, he staged a triumphal procession through the streets of Alexandria, in which he and Cleopatra sat on golden thrones, and Caesarion and their children were given imposing royal titles. Many in Rome, spurred on by Octavian, interpreted the spectacle as a sign that Antony intended to deliver the Roman Empire into alien hands.

After several more years of tension and propaganda attacks, Octavian declared war against Cleopatra, and therefore Antony, in 31 B.C. Enemies of Octavian rallied to Antony's side, but Octavian's brilliant military commanders gained early successes against his forces. On September 2, 31 B.C., their fleets clashed at Actium in Greece. After heavy fighting, Cleopatra broke from the engagement and set course for Egypt with 60 of her ships. Antony then broke through the enemy line and followed her. The disheartened fleet that remained surrendered to Octavian. One week later, Antony's land forces surrendered.

Although they had suffered a decisive defeat, it was nearly a year before Octavian reached Alexandria and again defeated Antony. In the aftermath of the battle, Cleopatra took refuge in the mausoleum she had commissioned for herself. Antony, informed that Cleopatra was dead, stabbed himself with his sword. Before he died, another messenger arrived, saying Cleopatra still lived. Antony had himself carried to Cleopatra's retreat, where he died after bidding her to make her peace with Octavian. When the triumphant Roman arrived, she attempted to seduce him, but he resisted her charms. Rather than fall under Octavian's domination, Cleopatra committed suicide on August 30, 30 B.C., possibly by means of an asp, a poisonous Egyptian serpent and symbol of divine royalty.

Octavian then executed her son Caesarion, annexed Egypt into the Roman Empire, and used Cleopatra's treasure to pay off his veterans. In 27 B.C., Octavian became Augustus, the first and arguably most successful of all Roman emperors. He ruled a peaceful, prosperous, and expanding Roman Empire until his death in 14 A.D. at the age of 75.”



Misty and I went to get Jay, and she and Maddie had their walk down there.  Misty’s walks are really a sniffing expedition, it is amazing how certain places are so interesting to her.  Bush telegraph, I suppose, it tells her what animals have been there since her last walk.

As the real milk wasn’t really a substitute for coffee creamer, I wanted to find some “So Delicious” creamer, while we were out shopping.  It is supposed to be a very healthy creamer made from coconut milk.   These days we all know the advantages of using coconut oil every day, and it’s health benefits.  Their website didn’t show any retailers in Conroe.

We stopped at St. Marks thrift shop, as that is where we drop off the paper recycling.  Jay bought a wicker towel holder for his kitchen, a bamboo round swinging chair for his porch, and some mahogany doors for his kitchen cabinets.  He is so glad that I drive a van.

We stopped at the health food store, but they didn’t have any ‘So Delicious’.   The lady there said that date sugar should be more healthy than Xylitol.  So I bought some, then found out online that it is great for baking, but doesn’t dissolve in coffee, so I didn’t use it.  I don’t bake as I hardly ever eat sweet things, so I will return it when I go to town tomorrow for my chiropractor appointment.

While Jay was at the barber, I went to HEB to see what they had.  They did have the brand of decaffeinated green tea that I like, but no ‘So Delicious’, even though their store in The Woodlands carries it.  Jay was still waiting for his haircut when I returned, but finally was done, so we didn’t go downtown Conroe to the Assistance League thrift shop.  As it is the last week of the month they have their half-price sale, and we don’t like to miss that.  But as they are closed on Mondays, customers line up on Tuesdays to get there first, so most of the best things would be gone anyway. 

When we got to Krogers, they had ‘So Delicious’ in their refrigerated health food section.  So my main mission was accomplished for the day.


abbottaric said...
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