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Everything posted by routlaw

  1. Referring back to the OP, I couldn't agree more. I am of the persuasion one cannot have enough tow vehicle, well within reason but like @Trainman have all too often seen people with poorly setup outfits from undersized tow vehicles to the actual hitching of the trailer, ie nose pointing extremely down or vice versa back down nose up. I would also bet dollars to donuts a large percentage of people towing campers are completely unaware of their towing/load capacity with and without weight distribution hitches. Regardless it never ceases to amaze me how people want to utilize the least amount of tow vehicle they can get away with for their respective camper vs a safely adequate or even overkill tow vehicle. Several years ago on the Fiberglass RV forum this same subject came up which resulted in somewhat heated debates at times. Apparently there is a Canadian company who regularly outfits small TV's with larger trailers claiming if done correctly the smaller TV is much safer and had videos to illustrate their POV. One video illustrated a Mini Cooper pulling an Airstream and not the Basecamp model either, I'm not making this up. A couple of years later my wife and I were camping down below Moab on some BLM land close to another couple with Tacoma pulling a 25 Flying Cloud Airstream, again I'm not making this up. They were full timers to boot, although this was their first year at it. Very nice people, we enjoyed chatting with them but have often thought of them and their setup wondering if anything has changed. At one point in the conversation the lady said they tend to do 45 mph while traveling. Curiously the fellow made a somewhat bold statement claiming Tacoma's were all superior to Tundras. Odd even to this day Tacoma's still have drum brakes (the last time I checked) on their rear wheels vs disc brakes. Part II of towing is also being able to stop, sometimes in emergency situations. In an effort to be polite we made no response or comments. Perhaps this begs the question though, should there be more stringent traffic or DOT laws that govern and police towing safety guidelines? It certainly appears to be that way with commercial transportation. Thanks
  2. For those who are still planning a trip to SW Montana below is a link from the Yellowstone National Park website. You might find this helpful. As I understand it, they are still assessing the road and bridge damages which appear to be extensive depending on locations within the park. The northern section will be completely closed off for an extensive amount of time. The small town of Gardiner will obviously share the brunt of the economics of this situation. Understand too there is still some awesome country to see, experience and explore in and around SW Montana yet outside of Yellowstone. Last year there was 4.86 million visitors to YNP, I can't imagine what that many visitors this year with only half the park open would be like. Crowded would be an understatement. Good luck finding a camp spot. Additionally the Livingston Hospital was evacuated a few days ago due to flooding. Not sure whose idea it was to build a hospital close to a a free flowing river but its there apparently. By now I've seen at least two complete houses flowing down rivers one on the Yellowstone the other on the Stillwater River to the east which flows out of the Beartooth Mountains. Its entirely possible other streams and tributaries (such as the Boulder both west and main) have also had extensive flooding which we have not heard about yet. As of yesterday it was my understanding the Billings Municipal water works was shut down as well. True the rivers are receding to some degree but the damage as far more widespread than just YNP. Hopefully this will help to some degree for planning carefully and cautiously. https://www.nps.gov/yell/learn/news/220613.htm
  3. As long as the subject is on tires, did you replace with 10 ply like the originals or just go with 4 ply all terrain?
  4. Agreed, seems a bit early to me as well. Not the best year to visit YNP in the first place. Of course this could change if it keeps raining but the real worry is the flip flop in temps on Thursday which will release a torrent of more water out of the mountains.
  5. It has been raining around here for days and weeks. Yankee Jim Canyon is now completely flooded or nearly so some parts of the road are gone. The road up to Mammoth is washed away in large parts, Tom Miner bridge completely gone and washed away. Rock Creek is flooding Red Lodge as we speak. The Gallatin River is close to breaching its banks in parts, its very full and running fast. Its my understanding Gardiner is completely cut off from the outside world at this point unless you have a helicopter. Paradise Valley from the north is partly flooded and I suspect it will only be time before Livingston will be partly under water too. It might get worse because it supposed to hit 87º on Thursday which means a huge amount of water will be coming out of these mountains at those temps. SW Montana today has been in the 40's to 50's but when a flip flop in weather like this occurs, its Katy bar the door with possible flood conditions. Snow Pack in the mountains this year has been either way above normal or above normal depending on the mountains range. I would not advise anyone to travel to this area for the next few days maybe weeks. Those roads in and around the park will take a very long time to repair given their damage and getting worse by the hour.
  6. Still using my 4 pack T-105's here too. A couple of months ago in another thread I had thought mine were on their way out, turns out the culprit was my Blue Sky Solar Controller which had a broken leg on the inductor (coil) and thus was not charging correctly and for reasons I'll never know provided information to the IPN Remote that stated all was normal. After the repairs my Trojan battery pack seems to be back to normal even after 7 years of storage in Montana winters. Turned the solar off two weeks or so ago and batteries maintained a charge of 12.8 volts, down .05 volts from the first day of disconnect. Can't complain about that. However I have convinced myself LiFePO4 batteries are in my future. It would be nice to shed a couple hundred pounds plus not having to deal with maintenance of lead acid.
  7. And they are still recommending 120 ft lbs of torque. This really needs to be changed.
  8. We don't use a microwave in our house so of course opted out of one for the Oliver too. We have made great use of the area for coffee and tea storage stuff. I'll try and post a few photos later today if I get the time.
  9. Can't answer for everyone, but it was deluge of rain for about 6 days running here, doubt there were many people out camping in this neck of the woods for the holiday. Even snowed in Yellowstone and a few places around the state. A lot will depend on your location or where you plan on going. I expect the west to be full in the national parks this year, other public campgrounds will be a hit and miss depending on there location.
  10. Curious, gas prices here just dropped a nickel yesterday now back down to $4.39 regular. I would go back to tent camping before I spent $400 or more to fill up, let alone way above that for a summers outing. There comes a point where it just doesn't make sense.
  11. Exactly this is how I came up with the almost 3 amps for the furnace draw. Its actually 2.7 according to the specs. The Blue Sky solar controller and its associated IPN Remote provides a lot of calculated information but not being familiar with the Zamp have no idea how it compares.
  12. If you have 630 AH of Lithium battery storage I can't for the life of me imagine you would ever need a generator to supplement your electrical needs. Again we only have 450 AH in our 7 year old wet cell lead acids batteries which effectively only means 225 AH without theoretically damaging the batteries. We live above the 45th parallel and not once have we ever needed a generator, and this is camping from the first week of March through about mid Oct. To the best of my recollection the lowest our charge ever became was around 83-84% capacity due to cold weather and running the furnace far more than normal. Given our minimalist style of camping a 100 AH Lithium would probably work for us, based upon past history of electrical usage. However I will most likely do a 200 ± AH battery bank of Lithium once we make the change over. As the saying goes YMMV.
  13. Wow! 100-120 amp hours per day, may I ask what you use this much power on. In seven years we have never ever come close to this much energy consumption. Not being derogatory just curious. Typically we only use about 9-10 amp hours per day unless we need to use the furnace then it might jump up to 20-40 amps at the most. I can only recall once that our battery bank did not fully recharge in a day, with the exception of our last trip where the solar controller the Blue Sky was not operating properly. In any case if the OP is only using the water pump and lights it highly unlikely they will burn through more than 10 or so amps per day, unless of course they have to rely on the furnace which will change things quickly.
  14. You haven't stated what sort of batteries you have and how many amp hours of storage you have within those batteries. In general LiFePO4 will charge at a much faster rate than wet cell lead acid or AGM's. However given you're minimum usage of electricity its unlikely you would need a generator. We have been using our Oliver for over 7 years, with 4 Trojan T-105 wet cell batteries which has 450 amp hours of storage, however only 225 ± of those amp hours can be used without damaging the battery bank. With lithium you can use almost 100% of their storage and safely down to 15%. We do not carry a generator and have never needed one either. Typically we will only use 2-3% of our battery storage per day which is easily recharged by mid morning in the summer months out west. If you are in shaded areas it might take a bit longer. Also if you access the furnace with cooler nights this will draw about 3 amps per hour from your battery bank and this IS by far the largest amp draw, assuming you don't try to use the AC. Cutting to the chase I wouldn't worry about it much if at all. Still you need to know and understand not just your solar capabilities but also you battery bank capabilities. Hope this helps.
  15. Looks like a nice campground. Another bit of nostalgia and coincidence, I went to high school in Guntersville, know the area very well. Y'all have fun
  16. Agree with @topgun2 comments, this does not look good to me either.
  17. What Mike D. said, can't use them with the E-Z Flex suspension.
  18. Not a problem, Friday the 13th is a good enough excuse, must be it.
  19. Imelda, this has been discussed many times on the forum. Initially Oliver recommended this, then changed their mind due to the manufacturers (Barker) rnot recommending doing this. To make a long story short from what I can determine many Oliver owners use the built in jacks without the blessing of Oliver while others use a mobile hydraulic jack. If your Oliver is a newer one with enhanced steel plates on the frame, use a mobile jack, if older without the steel plates there seems to be no real consensus as to the best or safest method. I would encourage you to do a thorough search of the forum to learn more.
  20. Interesting video, and also because he used an hydraulic jack right under the axle, oh well.
  21. Looked at the link, Redline CV-2 is not even mentioned on this review, but Lucas Red and Tacky is the winner.
  22. I don’t have one, but have considered purchasing a small to medium size to use while camper is in our driveway. Too far from the exterior clean out to use directly but dumping especially gray water and rolling it over to our house sewage clean out would be a benefit. This way you can do a very thorough clean with out feeling pressured with a line of other campers behind you. Something to consider. However I don’t feel the need to carry one along on a trip.
  23. Granted I’m responding to a very old thread here but would like some clarification on a few things. Just received my Timken bearing set 4 and set 17 and once the weather clears will be installing those. Don’t have the fortune of being able to work on my Oliver inside a garage. I’m tempted to just use the onboard jack/stabilizers to lift the wheels on one side at a time, then place jack stands on the frame for additional support. But in the interest of doing this “properly” what is meant and where are these steel plates everyone keeps referring to? Just crawled underneath mine ( #70) and other than the axles and leaf spring configurations I see nothing that looks like steel plates. There are two L shaped cross members that run from side to side but can’t believe these are strong enough to hold 3000 or so pounds. Raspy pointed out using hydraulic floor jacks under each leaf spring plate but the bolts from those protrude considerably past the plate itself. Somehow this seems like dubious approach. As a last point, if the frame itself is susceptible to damage by jacking up from the frame, then how on earth would placing two jack stands for support and security be any different? To my way of thinking I don’t see much difference. Thanks
  24. Good ones, all of them
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