Moved In (Almost)

What a day!

We’ve been at it since 6am and we are calling it a night.

Here is what the move looked like after we had everything packed up and ready to go.

22 boxes. Computers, consoles, guitars, pedals, cameras, a bike and a bike trainer were also part of the move.

When I looked at all of the stuff we were taking with us, I did not think it would all fit.

We had rented a 10-foot box truck to do the move from Kingston to our coach — the coach was being serviced in Barrie, Ontario and we decided to make the move happen there as it was a bit more convenient.

Once the truck was packed, this is what it looked like:

Does not seem like very much stuff at all once everything was in the truck. That stuff should easily fit into a 40-foot coach.

There was enough stuff to keep us busy unboxing and organizing for the past five hours. And we are about halfway done.

I have the truck for another day so we will be using tomorrow to get our basement bays organized and complete the rest of the unboxing and organizing then.

I will definitely sleep well tonight.

Be Careful Out There

In my news feed this morning. A motorhome, with three adults and six children, drove off Interstate 90 in Ellensburg killing one of the adults and one of the children.

It looks as though the motorhome chassis separated itself from its outer shell. And it was pulling a very large trailer. Could loss of control been due to an issue with the tires? Or perhaps being overweight? We might never know.

Where were the passengers? Were they in the motorhome? Would they have been wearing seat belts?

A sad and tragic event.

We are always very diligent with our circle checks and ensuring that our tires are in good shape and properly inflated for the weight of our coach.

I remember pulling up to a Class A at a fuel stop a few years back. The owner had a massive trailer that he was towing. I asked him about the weight of his rig and he told me, without any concern, that he was running overweight.

Some owners do take risks.

Maintenance Check

Our coach has been with the dealer since early August dealing with a number of issues and recalls and a few additional items.

The issue list:

  • Side radiator lower grill almost disconnected from body of coach
  • Oasis hot water heater pump failure which requires a replacement pump
  • Full wall slideout uneven and the slideout floor rises up after it has been deployed
  • Front passenger side levelling jack leaking hydraulic fluid
  • HWH levelling system not operating correctly
  • Full length of Girard Awning Casing on top of passenger side of coach overhangs coach body by about an inch (Girard Awning Casing/Housing is not fully retracted)
  • Hole in roof (very front and centre of roof membrane where the front cap angles down and meets the roof line)

The technical service bulletin and recall list:

  • 472 TSB: Slideout Motor Mounting Bolts (this is the second TSB related to slideout motor mounting bolts so we need to validate that they are appropriately secured)
  • 483 RSB (Recall 17V 420): Driver Passenger Shade may operate with ignition on
  • 485 TSB: Freightliner Wiper Control Software Update
  • 486 TSB: MCD Remote Shade Motor Replacement
  • 488 RSB (Recall 17V 497): Battery Cable May Rub Against Frame (potential fire hazard)
  • 493 PIB: Freightliner Lightbar: instrument panel odometer value may reset and not match the engine ECU odometer value
  • 512 RSB: Recall 18V 245: Low Beams Do Not Illuminate with High Beams

New items to be installed:

We received the following update from our dealer:

I just wanted to drop a quick note to let you know we have received the Oasis pump for your coach. We are still on track with your timeline.

As I may have mentioned before on the phone, most of the tasks have been completed with few exceptions: We are waiting on parts for one of the recall issues (a wiring harness) that has not yet arrived. The issue with the levelling jack is tied with the issue of the slide floor raising, both having to do with a failed solenoid at the hydraulic pump. That has been covered by the extended warranty, with the exception that you will have to cover the shipping on the part along with your deductible. And of course, we now have the Oasis pump which can be installed.

I will continue to keep you informed as we progress with your coach. Have a great weekend!

We had contacted ITR about the issue we had with the Oasis Heating System. Last fall, I had spent several hours in the basement of our coach, on the phone with ITR technical support, attempting to get the pump working so that we could get hot water. No joy. There were known issues with the pumps that ITR had used in our model year and they either changed the design or the supplier or perhaps both. ITR agreed to send us a new pump without charge — thank you ITR — and the only concern was whether the pump would arrive in time for us to get it installed in our coach.

It has arrived so we will have hot water on demand again. We did have hot water after the pump failed but we had to hack the system by changing the loops through a bypass switch. It meant that whenever we needed hot water, we had to exit the coach, open the bay to the Oasis system and turn a hidden switch on the main control unit. Once we were finished using the hot water, we had to go back outside the coach and turn the hidden switch off. Inconvenient.

A failed solenoid is a bit of a surprise to me and hopefully that resolves the slideout issue and the HWH levelling issue. Our extended warranty has a $200 deductible. I’ll be interested to see how much it cost to resolve the issue under extended warranty.

Looks like most of the items have been completed now with about two weeks left to go.

We take our car in to the dealer on September 19th to have the Blue Ox system installation completed. They will walk us through the process of hooking up our toad and making sure that the system is working properly.

Haven’t pulled a toad behind our coach as yet. I will be interested to see what it is like.

September 21st we leave the dealer and make our way to Sherkston Shores for a few weeks before heading south.

The adventures begin.

Moving Day

Moving day is coming up fast.

We move out of our condo into our coach in just a few weeks.

We have been busy getting all of our current stuff either bound for the storage unit or bound for the coach.

With our last big move, we managed to fill this trailer full of stuff and I do mean full:

Oh, and a second one too. Not as big as this one. It was a large cube truck to move all of my recording studio equipment.

We went from one huge house to another. And we filled nearly every nook and cranny with stuff.

As part of our retirement planning, we did a pretty dramatic downsizing. Sold a lot of stuff. Gave away a lot of stuff. Threw out a lot of stuff.

And, even though we are decidedly much more minimalist now, we still have a lot of stuff. Enough to fill two large storage units when we sold our house — although we are now down to one storage unit — and enough to fill a large two-bedroom condo.

We are fortunate to have a Class A motorcoach for our travels however we have to be really careful about how much stuff we carry. It has been interesting going through our condo and doing much of what we did when we first downsized our house a year or so back. What should we sell? What should we give away? What should we throw out?

Travelling light is a joy. We’ve experienced that when we have travelled abroad.

Travelling light in our motor coach is a given. There is limited space for stuff.

Moving day awaits. I’ll show you how much stuff we are taking with us when we get the truck loaded up.

On September 18th, we will be taking the stuff for the coach from our condo in Kingston to our coach at the dealership near Toronto. We will move everything in, get it stored away as quickly as we can, return the truck to Kingston and then head out the following morning back to our coach at the dealership for the start of our travels.

Between now and then, lots to keep us busy!

Wheel Estate

CBC carried an article about a relatively new company offering a variant of ride-sharing: Wheel Estate.

Chad and Cherie Ball may be looking for a vacation after a summer of matching wannabe campers with RV rentals.

The Okotoks, Alta., couple is into their second season running Wheel Estate, a business that helps owners rent out their towable camping trailers in a style similar to that of Airbnb.

They got the idea for the business 10 years ago when they tried to rent a neighbour’s RV and discovered his insurance would be void once money changed hands.

“We were hit by the recession pretty bad back then and we just wanted an affordable getaway, trying to hit the reset button,” Cherie Ball told the Calgary Eyeopener on Monday.

It took the couple six years to secure an insurance policy to back their idea and launch the business, which they did last year.

Wheel Estate only offers trailers, not motorhomes. And I’m not sure how well they will be able to compete against these guys.

I had written about Outdoorsy before. When I jumped on their website, they took my location data and presented me with hundreds of options — all of them local to me — and everything from travel trailers to Class A, B and C motorhomes.

With Wheel Estate, I had to start a booking process to see what, if anything, might be available in my area, and, as mentioned, limited to just trailers.

I ran the same scenario across both sites: rent a travel trailer, 1 week in September, Kingston area.

Outdoorsy brought me 61 RV rental options. Wheel Estate only 2.

Whether this type of service really takes hold is anyone’s guess although there does seem to be some momentum behind Outdoorsy.

I do know that we would not ever consider renting out our Class A. Our coach is too complex and ad hoc rentals would simply invite mechanical issues through inexperience and/or neglect. Not to mention the wear and tear on the coach itself.

But, if Lorraine and I were in our thirties and we wanted to go out in a trailer for only a week or so a year, renting a trailer for a few hundred dollars a week would be a lot more affordable than buying one for tens of thousands of dollars along with the additional storage and maintenance costs.

And Millennials are the primary market for these sharing economy services, not an old guy like me. They might be jumping all over Wheel Estate and Outdoorsy.