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Brian and Maria

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Everything posted by Brian and Maria

  1. Corrections: The shackle size that I used as pictured in my original post is 1/4" made by National Hardware #N100-278. I apologize for any confusion. - Brian
  2. Hi SeaDawg: We just returned from a three-night stay at Roan Mountain S.P. and it is now one of our favorites. My wife left a post with some pictures on the Oliver Owners FB page. I appreciate a well-run campground and this is one of them. We found the grounds and facilities well kept with the rangers making regular rounds in vehicles and sometimes on foot which I really appreciate. The lower loop sites are closer together than those on the upper loop. The trade-off is the upper loop road is on an incline and its sites are not consistently level whereas the lower loop sites are nice and level. The upper loop has a more quiet/secluded vibe and the lower is more families/kids at least it was when we were there. It's just the two of us but nonetheless we enjoyed the lower loop in site 10 directly next to the bathhouse. Nice campground check-in/store with tee shirts, firewood, ice cream etc. An eight-mile drive and you're at Carvers Gap and some awesome hiking and views. - Brian
  3. On our most recent outing one of our battery tray latches failed. The pin on the left/fore side of the battery tray was totally missing as was the rivet/pin on which the rear of the latch pawl pivots. Fortunately I found the latch pawl itself loose in the battery compartment. Our temporary fix to get us home included tie wraps and, of course, duct tape to secure the latch pawl in place. The right (aft) side battery tray latch was not affected. Until such time we can arrange a permanent repair, I'm confident that our semi-permanent solution pictured below will serve to keep the tray secure. It consists of a stainless steel anchor shackle holding the latch pawl in place so that it cannot be raised whatsoever, thereby preventing the battery tray from sliding out. I found that the 3/16" shackle fits perfectly, with the anchor shackle pin fitting snugly in the holes. For reference the particular shackle I used is made by National Hardware, #N100-347 and available at Lowe's. Hopefully this information is helpful to those who may experience the same failure. Be safe everyone. - Brian
  4. Hi QuestionMark: Thanks again for the heads up PM on this topic, I appreciate it! I subsequently checked our 2020 EI and found that (1) the 3 5/8" shackles were used and (2) there are no bushings on the top zerks. Clearance between the frame and suspension is less than 1". I'm already in touch with Jason, he's offered to ship out a replacement Dexter HD kit or have the work done there at Oliver (I don't have the skills to do the work myself or I would). QM, JD, All: Your comments and those of other experienced Ollie owners here and elsewhere in the forum are invaluable. . . I'm a first-time travel trailer owner and have never even towed before so suffice it to say the learning curve is steep. In this case, I likely would have had no idea anything was amiss with the suspension until a failure, which easily could have been catastrophic. Many, many thanks to you all for taking the time to share your knowledge and research. -Brian
  5. I understand, I'm also about 6' and there's no way I will fit back there far enough to see the plug and outlet. One thing that worked for us is a mirror to initially locate the outlet and plug without having to do contortions. Make sure there is no AC being supplied to your trailer (i.e. disconnect your shore power plug from the outside) to prevent a shock. Then you can reach in there to feel if the plug is disconnected and if needed put the plug back into the outlet. In the meantime and as suggested by someone else, you could run the frig on LP. Good luck! - Brian
  6. Hi SherMica: It may help you to know that we experienced several code "10" errors very soon after picking up our Elite I. Each time it was caused by the refrigerator's AC plug coming unplugged from its electrical outlet. None of the temporary fixes we tried work until we simply (1) (gently) squeezed the plug's terminals together to create a snugger fit when plugging it into the outlet and (2) moved the plug to the other outlet on the receptacle. Not sure if the latter helped but it hasn't unplugged for several months now. There didn't seem to be any consistency or pattern . . . it would stay plugged in on bumpy roads sometimes and then other times it would be unplugged after all day on the interstate. As you've found out it's a tight squeeze to get back in there to see the refrigerator's AC cord and plug. I can't fit in there but my wife can and, with a good flashlight, she is able to actually see the plug and receptacle. You may want to try again to see if your refrigerator's plug is loose and if so, attempt the fix and maybe leave the plywood panel off until you're sure that the plug indeed is staying in. BTW Oliver maintenance advised me that the refrigerator warranty would be voided by swapping out the standard plug and receptacle with the locking type. Too bad, that would work perfectly I think. I hope this helps. Good luck to you. - Brian
  7. Hi Carl: 2020 Elite I Kitchen Drawers Interior/Usable space in inches Top 17 x 9 5/8 x 3 1/4 deep Middle 17 x 21 3/8 x 7 1/4 deep Bottom 7 3/4 x 21 3/8 x 7 1/4 deep We've been using the top drawer for standard-sized eating utensils and the like, kept in a regular-sized organizer (i.e. knives, forks and spoons holder). The middle and largest drawer holds our pots and pans with room for coffee mugs, hot pan holders, etc. The bottom drawer holds longer utensils (bbq tongs, spatula, etc) and our aluminum foil and cling wrap. I hope this helps. - Brian
  8. A falling branch wiped out our backup camera antenna recently. I found this replacement at etrailer.com (p/n PXXHD0006301R fits camera model WVCMS130AP, $21 plus tax and S/H). First experience with that site, fully satisfied with their prompt shipping and protective packaging. Hoping this info may help someone. - Brian
  9. Hi dewdev: I think that I may be the only Elite I owner using the Andersen with a 1/2 ton. We towed without it for the first few months and never had any issues except for slight porpoising at times. I decided to buy the Andersen mainly because of liability concerns: our TV requires a WDH for a 500 lb+ tongue weight. While our tongue weight is normally sub-400, we do draw near 500 with a full fresh water tank. I just didn’t want to worry about it so added the WDH. The Elite pulled very nicely without it, since adding the Andersen the improvements are minimal but noticeable; less porpoising and a bit better tracking. - Brian
  10. As follow up on this, I reweighed at a CAT scale during our camp trip earlier this week. With a full fresh water tank, the tongue weight was 498 so much less than the 640 that I earlier estimated and thanks to those who pointed out that possibility. The truck with trailer attached weighed in at 6,960 - a good 90 pounds under GVWR. And I still have yet to trade out that heavy rubber bed mat so I'm in pretty good shape weight-wise. By the way, I recommend Calhoun Falls State Park (SC). Level RV sites with large, level living area pads, good spacing between sites and right on Lake Russell. - Brian
  11. Hi bobc: This reply may be too late to be useful for you but I’m finally on a level pad and I measured 20” from the ground to inside the Bulldog. Cheers. - Brian
  12. We’re going to miss Edisto Beach State Park. We’ve enjoyed our stay and we were happy to see a very nice looking Elite II at the campground and meet more of the Oliver family! The ocean is on the other side of the dunes in the second picture so you’re not exactly “on the beach” but close enough to hear the surf and take a nice long walk on the beach whenever you want. Many, many shells on the beach. The first night the no-see’ums were terrible and had us making a hasty retreat indoors. The next day they weren’t an issue because it was quite cool but they were back again today, a warmer day. The showers are convenient and clean, the grounds well maintained. We were able to pick up the free wifi with our WiFi Ranger so two thumbs up for that. The antenna picked up a good selection of television stations. Our site (#27) had absolutely no shade but it wasn’t an issue with pleasant daytime highs. Sites have electricity and water, no full hookups. The dump station is located off site, about 1/2 mile on the way out. I’ll happily give this campground an overall rating of “we’ll be back.” Be safe everyone. - Brian [And yes, we did vote early back home!]
  13. Mattnan, thanks and happy to hear that you enjoyed your Edisto Beach stay. We love the mountains but also enjoy surf and sand so we're jazzed to see Edisto. We have a camper friend who spoke well of Hunter Island. I'd be interested in your impressions, we're considering a stay there as well. Be safe. - Brian
  14. BackofBeyond, thank! and so far, so good, looks like the weather will cooperate. Booking so far in advance is a roll of the dice we sometimes lose, weather-wise, but in this case was necessary to get a spot on the beach. Be safe. - Brian
  15. We’re jazzed that the weather is looking great for our beach trip! Starting Sunday and returning on Wednesday. This will be our first time camping right on a beach so we are really looking forward to it. We’ve never been to Edisto Beach; Folly Beach further to the north has been our favorite. We don’t camp right on the beach there but the campground at nearby James Island County Park is awesome. Anyway I hope to post here again after this trip. Keep safe everyone. - Brian
  16. John, could be but I don't think it's that far off. I should have included that I refer to it as an estimate only because I weighed the TV (only) and the TV plus trailer on two separate trips. Though both were laden ready for camping, I can't state that both contained the same items for both weigh-ins but there were no major (heavy) items added or omitted . The TV (only) weight was 6,420. The TV weight increased by 640 lbs. when I added the trailer. That said I do need to take those weights on the same day for accuracy. Or as you suggested buy a tongue weight scale. Thanks for the Sherline recommendation, I'll check it out. - Brian
  17. TexasGuy, glad to be of help. Here are my CAT scale numbers for the overweight: steer 3,260 drive 3,800 trailer 3,660. Truck GVWR is 7,050. So we were 10 lbs over, not the 40 I stated in my earlier post. Estimated the tongue weight at 640. As an aside, I've since added the Andersen WDH to try to even out the axle weights. It was a recent addition and I've weighed only once with it and it made only a very slight improvement in shifting weight to the front axle. I'll be increasing the tension on the hitch chains to see if that helps. - Brian
  18. RB, thanks for sharing your experience with the 3/4 ton and I would definitely go that route should we ever end up with an EII. Having done my homework in selecting the trim (XLT) I think will serve us best for our EI - not a lot of bells and whistles but good payload, max tow package - I too was a bit surprised to be up against the payload limit. Getting rid of the rubber bed mat will definitely help. On the bright side, the time we were over payload it was only by 40 lbs and it was a "worse case" with full TV gas tanks, full trailer fresh water and LP tanks, both TV and trailer loaded for camping. - Brian
  19. John, thanks for the Bedrug info and link. I watched the installation video; nice product - especially its light weight and the tailgate option - and I may end up buying one. In the meantime I’m planning to remove my current mat and see how my knees do with the spray-in liner underneath. - Brian
  20. SeaDawg, our tow vehicle - F150 4x4 SuperCrew - selection was likewise impacted by the (western) NC climate and its wintertime snow/ice. I’m pleased with the overall towing performance of the F150, plenty of pulling and stopping power for the Elite and with the 36-gallon tank and the back seat for the dogs it fits us well. Another pro for us is the 6.5 ft. bed. I’m new to towing so the backup assist comes in handy but I find I’m using it less frequently as I gain experience. The cons thus far: mileage and payload. I “drive like an old man” - may be because I am - rarely exceeding the posted speed limits to be rewarded with 12 or 13 mpg. Not impressed. I’m using CAT scales now and then to track our weights; we did once exceed our payload with a full fresh water tank. A couple of weighty TV accessories factor in, hard tonneau cover and heavy duty rubber bed mat, so I’m looking at rearranging to move some weight from the bed to the trailer. With the limited storage space in the trailer I’m finding that the options in this area are limited. May need to look at leaving behind some stuff....seems that’s a natural occurrence as we become more efficient, packing less with each trip. - Brian
  21. Hi Bobc: Wish I could help but my parking pad isn’t level. As soon as I have it on level ground I will check the measurement and let you know . - Brian
  22. Hi jordanv: We have essentially the same truck you’re looking at, SuperCrew, payload of 1,736 and GVWR of 7,050. A “stress test” with our Elite I had us exceeding the GVWR by ten pounds: full fresh water tank, full TV gas tank, two adults, two medium-sized dogs, two full 20-lb. LP tanks, and the 6.5 ft. bed full of gear. We have since reduced the amount of gear we carry but these figures give a good representation of how quickly it adds up. I’ll also note that we use a hard tonneau cover and heavy duty protective bed mat. I hope this helps. - Brian
  23. We elected to have Oliver install the Andersen hitch during our recent visit there for service. We had been using a weight carrying hitch and made the switch for two reasons. Even though our TV has the max tow package, the maximum tongue weight allowed without a weight distribution hitch/WDH is 500 lbs. After several trips weighing our rig on a CAT scale, I noted we exceeded that allowance with fresh water onboard. Liability issues compelled us to switch to a WDH. Also we noticed porpoising with the weight carrying hitch. I am very pleased to say that has been all but eliminated and the towing experience is much more enjoyable. I will revisit the CAT scale to see how well the hitch’s weight distribution feature works. I understand that some find it challenging to reconnect the Andersen hitch under certain conditions, e.g. unlevel terrain. We have not yet had the opportunity to reconnect but hope to take advantage of the tips found in the various posts on this forum and the Oliver Owners Facebook page. - Brian
  24. ScubaRx: Thanks for the advice and your points are well taken. I'm rethinking my decision and will likely go with the 45 degree angled zerks. I hadn't given much thought to having to scoot around under the trailer to access inward-aligned zerks . . . . and I'm at least 35 years and 50 pounds past the point of being able to do that with ease lol. I appreciate your tips. - Brian
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