Skip to content

Change font size

Preparing for a long trip

Discuss traditional (ball hitch) travel trailers here.

Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby skipnchar on Fri Aug 08, 2008 10:16 pm

Well here we go again, putting things off until the last minute but at least I'm getting the done albeit in the nick of time. Decided that after almost 40,000 miles on the Rockwood I'd better be packing the bearings and while I'm at it adjust the brakes. On the last trip it seemed that the braking power was down a little from previously. When I pulled the first wheel and opened the drum I found both wires to the magnet were torn away so the magnet wasn't getting any power at all. There goes 25% of my braking power. I went out and got a new magnet (the wires are permanently attached at the magnet end) and installed it, adjusted the brake shoes (looks like I'll be needing to replace those also when I get home) and moved on to the next wheel. All of the rest of the brakes were working correctly but in need of adjustment. Took the trailer on a two mile test afterwards and was thrilled at the increase in braking now.

I ALSO found that one tire is wearing unevenly so I decided to put it in the spare position and mount the spare. Guess I forgot that the spare has a plane old white wheel instead of the mag spoke like the rest of the trailer. While I could LIVE with the mixed wheel configuration I had ALSO forgotten that the fancy wheels won't mount to my spare tire carrier. Now it's getting serious so I take the two tires to a local tire store to swap the good spare tire with the worn one on the mag wheel. Seems like nothing ever goes smoothly.

It took most of my free time today to get these small tasks accomplished but now my bearings are packed, brakes working and properly adjusted and good rubber (mostly) is on the ground. I've still got two weeks to try to invent a means of raising my mileage from a maximum of around 10 MPG to over 25 MPG while towing. Any suggestions? ;)

Once WE come up with a plausible idea for the mileage thing, all I'll have to do is wash and wax the trailer, polish the wheels (after going to all that trouble they really HAVE to shine), wash and wax the truck, unload about 500 lb. of gear from the trailer and truck that we DON'T travel with and then see if I can get the greasy fingerprints off of my steering wheel and door handle (from when I was doing the brake job). Think I'll move that one to the top of the list before Char notices the mess :mrgreen:
2007 Rockwood 8314SS Travel Trailer
F-150 HD OR F-250 PSD SCREW (whichever I feel like driving)

Image
User avatar
skipnchar
Senior Contributor
Senior Contributor
 
Posts: 886
Joined: Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:20 am
Location: Topeka Kansas

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby PrivatePilot on Fri Aug 08, 2008 11:24 pm

skipnchar wrote:I've still got two weeks to try to invent a means of raising my mileage from a maximum of around 10 MPG to over 25 MPG while towing. Any suggestions? ;)


Clearly you need one of these:

Image

And one of these:

Image

Between those two things, if my math holds correct, you should be getting somewhere around 60MPG towing. ;)
User avatar
PrivatePilot
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 717
Joined: Mon Mar 10, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: Courtice, Ontario, Canada

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby skipnchar on Fri Aug 08, 2008 11:30 pm

I think I'll install two of each of them and open a gas station :mrgreen:
2007 Rockwood 8314SS Travel Trailer
F-150 HD OR F-250 PSD SCREW (whichever I feel like driving)

Image
User avatar
skipnchar
Senior Contributor
Senior Contributor
 
Posts: 886
Joined: Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:20 am
Location: Topeka Kansas

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby Limey on Sat Aug 09, 2008 9:04 pm

Simple solution to the mileage thing - make sure that your trip is downhill both ways.

Image
Martyn (aka Limey)

2004.5 Dodge Ram 2500 QC CTD 4x4 SLT; 2007 Coachmen Chaparral 267RLS;
Reese 15K Slider; Prodigy; JT Stabilizers; Rotochoks; 2 Honda EU2000i's
2006 Glastron MX175
User avatar
Limey
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1191
Joined: Sat Mar 22, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: Bennett, Colorado U.S.A.

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby skipnchar on Sun Aug 10, 2008 11:07 am

Limey wrote:Simple solution to the mileage thing - make sure that your trip is downhill both ways.

Image

Then that would be just retracing my route HOME from school when I was a kid? I used to always TELL my kids that I had "walked to and from school, uphill both ways, while barefoot and in the snow" just so they'd know how much they had it made.
2007 Rockwood 8314SS Travel Trailer
F-150 HD OR F-250 PSD SCREW (whichever I feel like driving)

Image
User avatar
skipnchar
Senior Contributor
Senior Contributor
 
Posts: 886
Joined: Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:20 am
Location: Topeka Kansas

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby Limey on Sun Aug 10, 2008 3:13 pm

We must be related - my dad used to say the same thing to me! LOL!

What part of England did you say you were from?? :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
Martyn (aka Limey)

2004.5 Dodge Ram 2500 QC CTD 4x4 SLT; 2007 Coachmen Chaparral 267RLS;
Reese 15K Slider; Prodigy; JT Stabilizers; Rotochoks; 2 Honda EU2000i's
2006 Glastron MX175
User avatar
Limey
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1191
Joined: Sat Mar 22, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: Bennett, Colorado U.S.A.

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby mountainman on Sun Aug 10, 2008 9:30 pm

Skip, after all the prep you didn't tell us where you are heading. We were going to give you some hints on where to get cheap gas!
Life is a Journey and only you hold the map!
User avatar
mountainman
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
 
Posts: 152
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 4:01 pm
Location: Loveland, Co

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby Limey on Mon Aug 11, 2008 12:23 am

mountainman wrote:Skip, after all the prep you didn't tell us where you are heading. We were going to give you some hints on where to get cheap gas!


Mentioning cheap gas - I was encouraged today - I bought diesel at $4.32 a gallon in Bennett - it was $4.70 only a few weeks ago. Woo hoo!
Image
Martyn (aka Limey)

2004.5 Dodge Ram 2500 QC CTD 4x4 SLT; 2007 Coachmen Chaparral 267RLS;
Reese 15K Slider; Prodigy; JT Stabilizers; Rotochoks; 2 Honda EU2000i's
2006 Glastron MX175
User avatar
Limey
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 1191
Joined: Sat Mar 22, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: Bennett, Colorado U.S.A.

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby wintek on Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:35 am

mountainman wrote: We were going to give you some hints on where to get cheap gas!


An great example of an Oxymoron: cheap gas
wintek
Established Member
Established Member
 
Posts: 82
Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2008 5:56 pm
Location: Shreveport, Louisiana

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby catmom on Mon Aug 11, 2008 2:58 pm

An great example of an Oxymoron: cheap gas

Amen to that!! :shock:
2007 Toyota Tundra SR5 CrewMax 5.7L w/ tow pkg
2008 Flagstaff 831RLSS
User avatar
catmom
Senior Member
Senior Member
 
Posts: 390
Joined: Fri Apr 18, 2008 9:47 pm
Location: Illinois

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby skipnchar on Mon Aug 11, 2008 7:54 pm

Well I guess it WOULD be nice to actually mention the destination(s). Actually we have a kind of 'route' we run every couple of years or so with some minor variations. West from Topeka to the Rocky Mountain National park area for a few days, then up into Wyoming to the Tetons and Yellowstone for a week or two, then to Glacier for a week, then back down into Idaho to the Sawtooth Wilderness area (somewhere near Stanley Idaho) then South to the flaming Gorge or occasionally we make a wrong turn and end up in the Northwest region (last time it was the Columbia River Gorge and Mt St. Helens then on to Olympic National Park) then back through Colorado or Wyoming again and home.

We never actually KNOW just where we'll end up when we leave but those are some of our regular stops. I think that ANOTHER oxymoron might be "cheep gas and Yellowstone" when used in the same sentence but I'm waiting for your suggestions.
2007 Rockwood 8314SS Travel Trailer
F-150 HD OR F-250 PSD SCREW (whichever I feel like driving)

Image
User avatar
skipnchar
Senior Contributor
Senior Contributor
 
Posts: 886
Joined: Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:20 am
Location: Topeka Kansas

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby catmom on Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:38 pm

Actually, we paid more for gas in West Yellowstone (the station closest to the park entrance) than we did IN Yellowstone itself (at Grant Village), by almost 10 cents/gal. I fully expected it to be around $5/gal when we were there, but it wasn't ($4.45 or so in West, $4.35 or so at Grant). That was over a month ago, so I would expect it will be somewhat lower by now, considering what oil & gas prices have been doing the last few weeks.
2007 Toyota Tundra SR5 CrewMax 5.7L w/ tow pkg
2008 Flagstaff 831RLSS
User avatar
catmom
Senior Member
Senior Member
 
Posts: 390
Joined: Fri Apr 18, 2008 9:47 pm
Location: Illinois

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby mountainman on Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:43 pm

Skip, Guess I would have to admit that our gas isn't all that "Cheap". We paid $3.76 here in loveland today. On our trip last week we paid $3.76 in Woodland Park which is a surprise considering that it is a tourist town. We seen $4.15 passing through Hartsel and didn't see any lines at the gas station there!
Sounds like a great trip and I also like to stay a bit loose on our plans just in case the Chevy wants to go west instead of east.
It is dry here this year. We are some 7" below normal so some areas have fire bands which doesn't bother us as we don't have camp fires unless the grandchildren are along.
If you decide to spend any time here in loveland send me a PM and I'll buy you a cup.
Have a good trip.
Life is a Journey and only you hold the map!
User avatar
mountainman
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
 
Posts: 152
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 4:01 pm
Location: Loveland, Co

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby PrivatePilot on Mon Aug 11, 2008 10:24 pm

catmom wrote:Actually, we paid more for gas in West Yellowstone (the station closest to the park entrance) than we did IN Yellowstone itself (at Grant Village), by almost 10 cents/gal. I fully expected it to be around $5/gal when we were there, but it wasn't ($4.45 or so in West, $4.35 or so at Grant). That was over a month ago, so I would expect it will be somewhat lower by now, considering what oil & gas prices have been doing the last few weeks.


We found most of the western states to be in the $4.55 range while we were out there. Once we got east (IL, MI, IN area) it was nearing about $4.90/g at the time.

Don't feel bad, we paid just over the equivalent of $5.91/g on our way west while in Northern Ontario. Even now with the price having gone down in the past few weeks it's still roughly $4.90/g for diesel here right now.
User avatar
PrivatePilot
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 717
Joined: Mon Mar 10, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: Courtice, Ontario, Canada

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby The Wood Tinker on Tue Aug 26, 2008 1:08 am

Only sure fire way to use less fuel is drive 55....and good clean air filter.
Jerry & Sharon †
Bindi, Cody and Terra the furry kids
Lake Elsinore, Calif
'08 F250 SD
'08 299BHS Tango
Image
User avatar
The Wood Tinker
Senior Member
Senior Member
 
Posts: 333
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2008 11:16 pm
Location: Lake Elsinore Calif

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby skipnchar on Tue Aug 26, 2008 7:59 am

Here's a good update for the fuel savings situation. I've been experimenting with several different means and found one that really does work. Yes it does include slowing down and driving between 55 and 60 mph but in tests doing this, even with a following wind I was seeing mileage around 9.5 MPG which is much better than my over-all average of 8.5 MPG in 40,000 miles of traveling. Gained a full mpg driving slower but then I decided to make a prop that would hold my 8 foot long hard tonneau cover in the raised position while driving. This essentially turns it into a HUGE wind deflector with a gradual slope to raise the wind off of about 3/4 of the trailer and puts it fairly close to the trailers nose. Result, with moderate winds from the port bow gave me a full tank of fuel getting 10.5 MPG. The next tank which included climbing a 10,000 foot mountain pass and light quartering winds from ahead and I got 11.4 MPG. Now we're talking about some serious fuel savings and I'll be working on a refinement that will alow closing the cover and raising a flap for future trips. Your normal wind deflector has little effect on a travel trailer because it sits too far from the trailer and is just too small but this thing is a completely different category. A standard deflector mounted near the back of a truck cap would probably also be quite effective but I just don't care that much for the look of the caps.
2007 Rockwood 8314SS Travel Trailer
F-150 HD OR F-250 PSD SCREW (whichever I feel like driving)

Image
User avatar
skipnchar
Senior Contributor
Senior Contributor
 
Posts: 886
Joined: Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:20 am
Location: Topeka Kansas

Re: Preparing for a long trip

Unread postby mountainman on Tue Aug 26, 2008 8:35 am

Skip; That's interesting data. I have also changed my driving habits and now concentrate on being especially light footed. it is a technique that has a certain feel to it similiar to that feel of a good golf swing. I am now getting 1 to 1 1/2 mpg better than with my previous more aerodynamic trailer. I have oftened wondered if I could find a spoiler that would fit on the rear boat carrier which is attached to my shell. I expect the problem would be the possibliity of loosening the bolts holding the rack to the shell.
In any case there is nothing like expermenting under actual conditions.
Have a great trip.
Life is a Journey and only you hold the map!
User avatar
mountainman
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
 
Posts: 152
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 4:01 pm
Location: Loveland, Co


Return to Travel Trailers

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests

Up Login   Register Up