Thursday, October 24, 2013

RV Transfer Switch. Batteries. Solar Panels. Tire Brands. Truck Campers. Keep Cool/Warm. "No Trace." World War II With Germany Over.


for "tRaVersing Thursday", or RV day:

Take care of your generator's transfer switch

image"Got a "built-in" RV generator? Don't have to "plug and unplug" shore power cords when switching from shore power to the generator? Then you have an ATS (automatic transfer switch). They're convenient — no need to go outside, open a door, and plug the shore power cord into a special receptacle fed by the genset.

However, there are a couple of caveats you need to be aware of: An ATS is not a "perfect" device, and problems can occur. Here's a good rule when firing up the generator when using an ATS. In fact, this is a good rule when firing up any RV generator, ATS or not: Reduce power consumption before firing up the generator. That means, make sure the air conditioner, the microwave oven, the portable electric space heater--any of those "big draw" devices are turned off."   Read them here.


Like Horses, Batteries Need To Be Watered Too!


How to maintain your RV batteries

"Just like horses, batteries need water, too. Rich "The Wanderman" shows you how to do basic maintenance on your RV batteries to keep them in top shape for a long life. Find out how easy it is!


imageHow much maintenance is required on solar panels?

"So you want to "go solar." That means installing solar panels. Okay, good. But what happens after that? How much maintenance is required?" Read the article.


Can you mix different brands of tires?

image"When it comes time to replace one or more of the tires on their RV, many people shop based on price so they are confronted with questions such as: "Do I need to replace all the tires at the same time or can I just buy one to replace the damaged tire, or just a pair for the front axle?" Or, "Do I have to keep the same brand or size or design of tire or can I make a change?" Find out.image

"I strongly suggest you do your research in the comfort of your home or at a campground rather than on the side of the Interstate and on the phone with the tire service company."


Truck camper buying tip

image "Thinking about buying a truck camper? You've joined a big group of folks who appreciate the flexibility these RVs provide. They're the only RVs with no running gear — no axles, wheels or brakes. No springs and suspension system. These all are part of your truck. But just because a truck camper doesn't have its own running gear doesn't mean you should ignore these things. Whatever truck you choose for your camper must be carefully considered." Read all about it.


Lingering in the desert?

image"Keep cool the low energy way.
Some snowbirds like to stick it out in the desert until the increasing heat thoroughly thaws out their bones before moving north. However, some Spring days can easily reach into the 90s and if you are boondocking, running an air conditioner from your main engine or a generator for hours should not be an option. But here are two ideas."  This works for winter, too!


Oddball RV paint jobs

image "You likely won't be motivated to repaint your rig after seeing these photos of offbeat paint jobs — but you will be entertained. See the photos."



Safely Jacking Up a Travel Trailer

"I have a 24-foot travel trailer with tandem axles. I would like to know the best way to get all four wheels off the ground at the same time to service wheels, besides rolling onto blocks to get one axle at a time. The axle owner's manual says not to jack on the axles. Where is the best place to jack and block for wheel service?" David L. (Cumming, GA)

"David, in my shop, if I couldn’t get the entire RV onto a hoist, I would only jack one side of the trailer at a time. Perform the service at each axle on that one side, then move to the other side. I would jack only on the main frame rail and allow the suspension to hang until both tires were clear of the shop floor. I would then lower that side onto appropriate, (read: weight capable), safety jack stands. Then simply repeat the process on the other side. For any RV being raised up with a floor jack, it’s much safer to always have at least two tires (or one side), safely on the ground at all times. Remember, safety first, the time element, second!"   Posted by RV Doctor



"In 1942, Revolite, then a division of Johnson & Johnson, developed an adhesive tape made from a rubber-based adhesive applied to a durable duck cloth backing. This tape resisted water and was used as sealing tape on ammunition cases during World War II. Today we call it Duct tape."


RV Tip:

"Don't speed when driving. Slow down. Use the right lane when possible. Lowering your speed five or ten miles per hour won't delay your arrival time by much, and you'll save fuel and be safer. What's the hurry?"


What's your "no trace" RV ethic?

"A columnist in an Idaho newspaper has a few gripes about bad campground behavior. Trash in fire rings, dog poop on trails, and the other usual suspects. Sometimes bad behavior is just that--a person with a nasty attitude. Other times it's just a matter of education. How's your campground courtesy knowledge?

Here are some tips that can make fellow campers (and park personnel) a lot happier:
Don't trash: It may be "biodegradable" but it can take a long time for the bio to degrade. Even paper plates can take four months to disintegrate, but a plastic drinking bottle? Try 500 years.
How about burning the trash? Not only does the stuff stink, it doesn't always burn up. Imagine being the next guy in your site, confronted with a lot of garbage to clean up.
If there aren't any trash cans, then use the "Pack it in, Pack it out" philosophy.
Got a tenter in your group? Encourage them to put their tent up on a designated tent pad. Putting them on native vegetation can stunt, even kill the stuff.
Walking around the campground? Please don't walk through somebody else's site. Cutting across a site is nothing but disconcerting--it invades a personal space.
Heading out from your site? Stick to the established trails. "Pioneers" cutting a new path, like tents in the wrong place, kill vegetation.
You've got an RV--use the bathroom there, or make the hike to the campground toilet. Whizzing in the woods (or worse) ain't great in the eyes (and nose) of your next door neighbor.
The same holds true for Rover. Take a poop collecting bag and follow up on your dog. Put the bag in the trash or tote it home with you.
The ethics of "leave no trace" make for a nicer time for everyone." Posted by Russ and Tiña De Maris


On This Day:

Truman declares war with Germany officially over, Oct 24, 1951:

"On this day in 1951, President Harry Truman finally proclaims that the nation's war with Germany, begun in 1941, is officially over. Fighting had ended in the spring of 1945.

Most Americans assumed that the war with Germany had ended with the cessation of hostilities six years earlier. In fact, a treaty with Germany had not been signed. Complicating the treaty process was the status of territory within what was formerly the German state. Following the Second World War, the major Western powers (U.S., Britain and France) and the Soviets agreed to divide the country, including the capital city of Berlin, into democratic and communist-controlled sectors. Both East and West Berlin ended up within the Soviet-controlled territory of East Germany and the capital became the epicenter of increasing tensions between the West and Soviet Russia. Each side claimed the other had violated post-war treaties regarding their respective spheres of influence in post-war Europe. The conflict over Berlin came to a head in June 1948 when Stalin ordered a blockade of the city. Truman did not want to abandon Berlin to the Soviets and ordered an airlift to supply the western sectors with food and fuel. The treaty process was put on hold until the Western powers could agree on what to do about Berlin. A Soviet atomic weapons test on October 3, 1951, increased the tension.

In his proclamation on this day, Truman stated that it had always been America's hope to create a treaty of peace with the government of a united and free Germany, but that Soviet policy had "made it impossible." The official end to the war came 10 years and two months after Congress had declared open war with Nazi Germany on December 11, 1941."



It was shopping day, so Misty and I went to get Jay, as he wanted to get out of the subdivision.  We had our walk down there and Misty was tracking an armadillo.  We could tell what it was by the way it had been rooting around in the grass.  I don't let Misty walk on private property, so she couldn't track it all the way to the lake.

In Conroe, we stopped at Walmart.  I had some canned cat food to return, as it wasn't a brand that I feed my cats. Also, I was trying so find a certain cat food for Peekers, my foster kitten. One of the foster moms said she thought she had the cat food's name right!  It is what they feed at the SPCA Cat Habitat, where Peekers will be going eventually.  It wasn't there, so I used the store credit on a new circular saw blade.

imageWe stopped at the health food store as I wanted to buy some dextrose (glucose) for sweetener, but they didn't have any.  Amazon has it for $4.99 for a 2lb bag, so I might have to send off for it.

We dropped off the paper recycling at St.Mark's thrift shop, but after a quick look inside, we came out empty handed.

We went downtown Conroe to the Assistance League thrift shop where I bought a cookie tin, and some new Gel insoles for 50c.  When we got to the Nearly New thrift shop we remembered that it had moved, but we couldn't remember where.

We made our way south to a pawn shop there.  Jay had a tile cutting wet saw that he wanted to sell.  They didn't offer him enough, so we put it back in the van. At Taco Cabana we shared some tacos, guacamole, rice and beans. I don't normally eat at fast food places, but I was hungry.

Kroger's didn't have the cat food either, but I bought a few food bargains.  I found the cat food at PetSmart, but when I got it home, it didn't look the same as what had been sent with Peekers.  What I bought has corn meal and 'by-products' in it, and I don't think the SPCA would feed that, knowing how it harms a cat's urinary tract.

Even though the day had started off cool, I was glad that I had turned on the AC for the animals, as it turned into a warm day.

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