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Jim and Chris Neuman

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Everything posted by Jim and Chris Neuman

  1. Many people mistakenly attempt to lighten tongue weight by loading their trailer toward the rear. This is a recipe for sway. Stay with Oliver's tongue loading recommendations and you will be very unlikely to see any issues, however, if you heavily loat the aft end of the trailer your potential for severe sway increases greatly.
  2. To get all of the chips out of the frame box beam, particularly one which is open only on one end, Oliver would have to turn the finished trailer on end and shake it in order to get the machining debris to fall out. That or try to snake a vacuum hose past all the through bolts, etc that intrude on the interior of the box beam. This metal debris is likely largely 6061 aluminum and unlikely to cause any harm if left in place. I would not worry about it. As a side note I have seen this often during the fitting out of aluminum sailboat masts. Every fastening operation will drop a bit of debris in the mast interior which is virtually impossible to remove except when the mast is hoisted vertical when being stepped in the boat. At that point the crane operator can give a few shakes and lots of metal debris will drop out. Upending and shaking your trailer may be less practical.
  3. Good for him! Nothing that a good pressure washer won't clean up (& he has a story that more timid folks can't match).
  4. We just sold our 2013 Tacoma and bumped up to an F150 FX4 with max tow package in order to better handle the weight of the LEII. We are extremely happy we did given our travel will be primarily in the mountainous Western US, Western Canada and Alaska. I am certain the Tacoma would have handled the LEII adequately on the flats but have found the brakes marginal for towing our far lighter previous trailer which weighed under 3000# loaded. The far smaller tank on the Toyota was also an issue ... not of safety but of convenience. The F150 with the 3.5 Ecoboost has far more power than the Tacoma and gets better MPG. We were amazed at the price we got selling our Tacoma ourselves ... within 6K of the Tacoma's new purchase price despite 96K on the odometer. Made purchasing a heavier TV easier to justify.
  5. Having spent my working years in manufacturing I am convinced competition serves to make us better and is to be embraced, not feared. Chopper gun layup as used by Oliver can produce a strong, relatively economical structure. It is however very, very heavy. Higher tech materials and technologies now make it possible to produce a far stronger, far lighter and far better insulated hull than is possible using an older technology such as the chopper guns primarily used by Oliver. The drawback is cost as newer composite technologies tend to be more labor intensive and require far more sophisticated and costly equipment to produce. Oliver deserves high credit for raising the quality bar as high as they have and I doubt that they are done yet. We will all be better off for it.
  6. If you are concerned about potential toxicity take a look at the MSDS (material safety data sheet) published by the manufacturer of the resins used in the construction of Oliver trailers. Oliver can provide this document at your request. You will find no formaldehyde in the formulation. Over time, ventilation will take care of the new fibreglass smell. Open windows and mechanical air exchange will speed up the process. We picked up our oliver in late May of this year. The new trailer odor has largely disapated at this point - if left tightly closed in hot weather, the resin smell increases until ventilated. To Oliver's credit our trailer was delivered clean and largely free of construction dust and debris.
  7. We camped there on our return from picking up hull 770 in mid May. Nice campground .... in season. Come summer temps it would be a cooker. No significant shade but that is to be expected in the badlands. Lots of great hiking and large numbers of bighorn sheep, antelope, bison and prairie dogs. The badlands are high on our "We gotta come back here" list.
  8. Am confused by your comment that the Oliver is 100% gelcoat. What are you referring to? The gelcoat is only a thin layer, maybe 20 - 30 mils, sprayed up against the release coat in the mold.
  9. We went with the stock mattresses in our standard layout at the recommendation of Oliver sales. The reasoning was that the center cushion, if KTT, would be so bulky and heavy that it would make changing to the dinette setup a challenge. My wife Chris put together two 2" memory foam toppers to which she fitted sheets. These are rolled up and stuffed in the backseat of our pickup when not in use. It takes only minutes to switch from full bed to dinette set-up or back using this system. The two toppers, laid over the stock cushions, makes for a very comfy bed.
  10. Much depends on how much of you there is to squeeze in there 🙂 We have the standard bed setup. I am 5'9" and carrying about 15# too much weight but have no trouble sliding into the dinette area from either side. We recently had six adults around the table for dinner on a windy night in the Steens and there was room for a couple more.
  11. Nice video - Thank you Jason! Through trial and error while bringing our new trailer back to WA state, we sorted the Anderson out (aided by James input during our delivery walk through). We did polish out some burrs on the hitch and pin which took just minutes and made hookup go smoother. Despite very heavy head and cross winds encountered across the prairie, we found the Oliver II towed extremely well behind our F150. The trailer has exceded our expectations and our thanks go to the Oliver team.
  12. Years ago I learned the hard way about metal hooks on bungee cords. John is right, please avoid them if possible.
  13. Oh, yes it is! Visiting from the states, you need to look at the whole picture. That includes traveling one of several routes through BC and the Yukon before you set foot in Alaska. There is also a great deal of off-pavement exploring to be done on AK roads that can be quite good. I have made the trip eight times and do not feel I have scratched the surface of all that can be seen and done in Alaska.
  14. Terrible installation. Backing board material is too fragile as evidenced by fracturing at the screwhole, the screws are too small (make them the diameter of the mounting holes), too short (should be as long as backing material is thick, and too few (screws top and bottom). It would be a simple matter to drill a few more holes in the mounting flange of the unit allowing for more fasteners. Also, the holes were located too close to the edge of a backing material which, again, seemingly fractures easily. You can take it a bit further by taking an appropriate length of threaded rod, drilling and tapping backing material at the appropriate sites, and injecting a bit of epoxy resin in the tapped hole before seating the rod, leaving enough threaded shaft sticking out to hang the unit and fasten in place with nylock nuts.
  15. Does the new 630 lithium option provide for charging from the tow vehicle?
  16. Another vote for a hydraulic hex crimper. I have used both stab and hex crimpers extensively in boat building and am convinced the results from a hex crimper are by far superior. Coupled with a good adhesive / heat shrink tubing will give you a really fine cable. I do not remember the brand I purchased but it was under $100.
  17. REI's poles are available. I just ordered up a set and received them in a couple days. They look sturdy.
  18. Thank you for the heads up! Ordered yesterday and got it today. Fits the Garmin Overlander perfectly.
  19. Good point on the bedding compound. Masts, booms, whisker poles & other common high-load components in sailboats typically use 6061 T-6 alloy. Fasteners used to attach hardware is typically 18-8 stainless. An anti-sieze compound such as lanolin applied to the threads can go a long way toward keeping bolts free and preventing snapping off of fastener heads ... a stainless fastener can become extremely difficult to impossible to remove if installed dry into aluminum with no anti-sieze.
  20. Coming from the sailing world I am a touch sensitive about corrosion brought on by dissimilar metals in close contact. Has anyone seen any issues arising from use of the Anderson system where the steel brackets come in contact with the aluminum frame?
  21. Just a thought. You can take a ferry from Whittier to Valdez through Prince William Sound. Really nice trip if it don't rain ( and whoever heard of rain in PWS? ). Kind of spendy, especially with a trailer, but amazing sail. At Anchorage you go East up to the top of Turnagain Arm and take a tunnel to Whittier ... an experience in itself. If possible, take in the town of Hope ... they have a great bar / burger joint and a nice campground.
  22. You will have a wonderful time! I have always gone up the Eastern route and back down on the Cassiar but the reverse would work just as well. Up until about 10 - 15 years ago, you could pretty well kiss off your windshield but now the route is virtually all paved (with the exception of the Denali Highway). On our last trip, during the summer of 2018, we found the roads to be in very good shape and experienced few rock dings on the front of our RV, an Aliner. When we go up again in two years we will probably put a temporary gravel shield on the front of our new Ollie 2 but otherwise am not too concerned about it. A bigger concern is the presence of an endless stream of frost heaves and the occasional, trailer-swallowing pothole. Dampening the porposing brought on by frost heaves is a good argument for the Anderson system. I have seen a number of trailers with broken axels and frames on the loop. Do take your camera, fishing pole and, most importantly, lots of time. Six weeks to two months will allow you to only hit the high spots and I guarantee you will be mumbling to yourself "if only I had more time" as you pass countless lakes, rivers and incredible views. Lots of campgrounds and boondocking available. Don't over-do the Bearanoia thing. Bear spray is no problem to take into Canada and a rifle or shotgun easily transported with proper paperwork. Don't even think about a handgun. The real danger is other tourists looking at the scenery instead of the road - that and drunken locals. A couple of extra gas cans makes a lot of sense and a 12V tire pump & plug repair kit can't hurt. Start with good rubber and you will be fine ... the Canadian and Alaskan road systems are pretty civilized these days. On our last trip we threw a couple kayaks on top of the pickup and were really thankful we did. Do have a great time and let us know how it goes.
  23. Just picked up a 2021 F150. Max tow, FX4, 3.5 & short bed. Initial impression is very good. Fit and finish is excellent, cab is extremely quiet and comfortable. Will put it through it's paces in April on the return trip from Holenwald.
  24. Re-gelcoating is not even remotely practical. It can be done but the cost would be well north of 10 - 15K and there is really no point in it. If your gelcoat has gone beyond buffing and waxes, than painting is the next step. This is done all the time with fibreglass boats. In fact, I don't think I have ever heard of anyone re-gelcoating an entire boat ... small, damaged areas yes but not large surfaces. You can do an amazingly good job by rolling and tipping some of the high tech paints commonly used in the marine trades and professionally done sprayed two part urethane paints will out-shine new gel coat. When your Oliver reaches, say 40-50 it may need paint but not before.
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