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Everything posted by Jim_Oker

  1. If you decide to get FLA or AGM, one weird little bonus for the ambivalent is that it won't be too many years before you'll be replacing them anyway and can always slip in Lithium at that point. As for the 3,000W inverter, we had the well documented (remote panel throwing a comms error and inability to update the firmware) issues with the one that was installed when we took delivery in December 2020 but I put in a replacement unit that Xantrex sent me in around June and it's been working fine since replacing the defective one.
  2. thanks, and I agree re: the policy
  3. Yeah, I don't think my usage of the phrase is quite spot-on and would probably not be how a trained economist would have put it, but I think the gist still comes across https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Price_elasticity_of_demand
  4. Yeah, with the population increase in WA, it seems like it's becoming to Idaho what MA is to NH. Get used to it, as it's not going to change. And my bet on that new policy? I bet that you'll continue to see a flood of WA plates at the ID SPs. I think that a big chunk of the new to camping crew from western WA is pretty price-elastic with regard to experiences like camping. If the park or stuff nearby looks great in photos on social media, this will be even more true.
  5. I'm looking forward to some wet season camping near me to be in position for some "photo safari" type fun and possibly some ski bumming as well, but even well before the pandemic the summer and even the nice parts of shoulder seasons were becoming much more busy and thus harder to just wander at random will - this was true even at least a half decade ago. I don't expect that to change given increasing population along with an increased percent of the population in my region now doing things like hiking and camping which I'm sure will "stick" with a decent percent even as Cabo and Lake Como and so forth regain their appeal as vacation options. However, here's my n=1 "survey" of recent RV buyers who were getting out a lot during the pandemic - my next door neighbors. They have just put their Winnebago Mini-Lite, which they enjoyed well enough for not quite two years with their two young boys, on the market. They seem done with camping vacations.
  6. Last winter I blew mine out with the one hour wait and then repeat tactic mentioned by John and it did experience some overnight lows in the teens as it sat idle outdoors. Perhaps just beginner's luck but the plumbing came through fine. I think it took about 30 minutes of active time plus the wait between blow periods.
  7. My understanding of the big red rotary switch in that cabinet at least in my 2021 trailer (#709) is that it cuts off the solar power input to the solar controller (and hence the batteries). Oliver told me that there is no battery cuttoff switch installed and that to eliminate phantom draw (beyond the BMS in the batteries and its bluetooth etc) they advised me to just do as Mike and Carol suggested.
  8. Is the surge protector display showing electricity coming in, and if so is there any error being reported?
  9. I don't know how reliable they are but some folks add an emergency shutoff device to their setup which is supposed to stop the flow of propane if the flow gets too high. Tanks have some sort of emergency shutoff valve internally nowadays too but I don't know the details of how they work other than that I need to turn my gas grill on tank first then burners or else this valve will engage and the flow while not dropping to zero will be VERY low. If this engages, I need to shut of the tank and wait something like thirty seconds and then turn things back on in the correct order (an order that avoids a sudden rush of gas when turning the grill on).
  10. One additional step that may possibly be needed is flipping a breaker that's off (on my 2021 this was off when I took delivery - a breaker under the dinette, on the wall of one of the seats). There is also an inline breaker on the power line going into the inverter. These may be on but if those other steps don't work this may also be at issue
  11. I don't know but that's what I've been trying after reading of these plates getting degraded fairly quickly. I think the challenge is making a membrane style keypad that will truly last outdoors. There are other button designs that would be more robust but that would cost a lot more to make too. When I worked for a company that designed and built interactive museum exhibits we used catalogs with various types of buttons and joysticks and other interface hardware that met either military spec or traffic/street grade spec (think buttons to activate a crosswalk light for instance) and that stuff is NOT cheap but it lasts well even with kids doing the crazy stuff kids do. Whereas when we tried using buttons made for pinball machines (which we *thought* would be super robust based on our experiences playing pinball...) we had clients like the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans (great zoo btw since they totally redid it some decades back) where the kids would snap the buttons off w/in a day or two of reinstalling them. Membrane type keypads only worked well in super low use places with docile visitors. They just shredded pretty quickly, even indoors with just lots and lots of button presses.
  12. I hope you brought beer!! If you have the convection/microwave, running that convection oven for a few hours will draw quite a bit
  13. Yeah, I opted for the 400ah of Lithium because we often camp for 1-2 weeks in partial to full shade here in WA, so we can run some deficit each day and still be ok for quite a few days that way before we need shore power (I'm less interested in running a generator for several hours in a row periodically). I opted in knowing that we'd rarely if ever use anything near the total stored charge in a day but for our scenario this still offers significant convenience. A week under big trees in the Olympics in May confirmed the choice, though it would have taken another week to be getting concerned about getting too low.
  14. I don't have a ton of experience with them yet but thus far I'm glad we have them on both sides as we do a fair amount of camping at the often drizzly coast and indeed extending them a foot or so helps - we are both keen on ventilation. And indeed on the new (we have a 2021 model) awnings the water will pool in the awning though it overflowed and drained a bit before breaking the awning at least so far. Just don't stand under the awnings when you retract them!! And yes, using the awnings in varied conditions will of course hasten the day on which we'll need to replace the fabric portion. C'est la vie.
  15. Some tents are just bigger sails than others and are not possible to hold down without something giving in a sufficiently strong wind. That’s amazing how well it held up. Sounds like it did better than my grandmother’s clothesline (one of those with a post and rails making a square on top) which my father describes chasing partway across Southbridge MA during the Hurricane of 1938. He said the clothes weren’t much good by the time he finally got to them.
  16. I still remember my dad shaking me awake at something like 4am and hustling us all into the car for the oh dark thirty drive from Framingham to the Cape when we would go camp out there some summers. “ The early bird catches the worm “ he’d say. The traffic at the bridges was awful even way back in the sixties I guess
  17. Reminds me that when you’re stuck in traffic in one of the tunnels under the harbor you get plenty of time to ponder the water dripping from some of the ceiling tiles…
  18. But yeah, there are some great little stores scattered around. Port Orford OR has a nice little food co-op that often has great stuff, and there's a too-tempting store just down the sidewalk that always has some fantastic cheeses and baked goods. Just up the road in Langlois is a decent little market that doesn't look like much from the outside - you can't tell a book by its cover.
  19. In some parts of Utah I'm grateful to find a store where I can buy carrots or some other vegetable and maybe sandwich bread and a box of cereal. When I reach a place like Page Arizona with its well stocked Safeway store (better than the Safeways around me near Seattle) I make sure to go in with a well thought out list and stock up (including on >4% beer 🙂 )!! I guess I should think of Wally World more for groceries while on the road - I am not in the habit.
  20. Though I'm also mostly recalling it from the elevated highway days, which are long gone since the notorious but visionary Big Dig...
  21. And yes. Go take a tour. Why wait? Last I heard Oliver delivery was almost a year out from first deposit. This is probably different now but I don't know in which direction.
  22. I did look at LOT of trailer floor plans and toured several from a short list in person. One thing I quickly eliminated from consideration was any trailer with a slideout. I've just read of too many horror stories. Join the RV Boondocking Facebook group for instance and search on Slide-out and you can find some such stories including leaks and slides that are stuck out on move day and such. Traveling in our van has helped me realize how much a camper will be bounced around and also how frustrating any component failure can be, so I wanted to reduce the points of possible failure, which I think the Oliver fits fairly well.
  23. Yeah it's not dark. I in fact covered the bed area ceiling and back (bed end) corner walls in our E2 with some darker colored fabric to make it feel a little more dark and cave-like back there and yet it still feels bright and open, just a little more homey back there now. I do miss being able to look out the upper windows while standing that I can look out in our camper van when doing food prep or other standing activity but then in exchange I like the storage we get instead from the upper cabinets that run the length of the trailer. So far it's been more of a thing I miss in concept more than in practice though if that makes sense. Yeah, you won't be able to gut it and re-do the interior like some of the cool youtube video bloggers and such like you can with a stick-built trailer but again there are pros of having for instance upper cabinets that will never be found on the floor after towing on a potholed forest road for instance. If you're itching to have your trailer be a blank slate for your architectural notions, you'd surely be better off with a used trailer from some other maker so you're not ripping out brand new stuff right away. If you've camped a bunch in campers already you may have some well studied notions of how you want to live in your next one but if you're new to RVing you may consider renting a few somewhat differently laid out trailers in your size range (from Outdoorsy or one of the other rental clearinghouses out there) to get a better handle on what you really do and don't want in the interior space. My camping style may be quite different from yours so what works well for me/us may not be great for you. We're still learning and evolving after 17 years with a Class B van (and about 15 of tent camping before that) and now not quite a year with the Oliver E2, but given our experiences in our van we had a pretty good sense that we wanted just a bit more room and something that we didn't need to make up for driving every morning when we are staying in one campground for a week or more on end but are often driving somewhere during the days. And we had a pretty good sense of how we'd use the space both in nice weather (when we're outside most of the time!!) and in not so nice weather (when we want to avoid the cabin fever two people can get in a standard size van with a raised top 🙂 ). Sure enough, the E2 is a pretty decent fit for us. I'm not quite as fond of the stark white 23rd century space shuttle interior look as some folks but the cloth mod I did along with hanging some of my photos has pretty much taken sufficient care of that for us, and I do like that we can wash down the entire interior (my cloth mod is velcro'd to the walls and can be removed in seconds and replaced in about a minute).
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