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Posts posted by KarenLukens

  1. After seeing that many of you have or had a 1500, and after a ton of research, I opted out of buying the 2500 Duramax because I felt that I didn't need it. Then people started coming out on here and saying that they have sold their 1500's and moved up to the Duramax, which I had thought about for a long time.


    This is my 5th Chevy truck in the last 40years and in that time I also have had 3 Ford's of various sizes, and still I did a ton of research. As far as high altitude overheating, I had no problem going over the sumits into Flagstaff, Az that top out at 7300', but I did test the trucks fuel to see if anything has changed in the last 50 years... or 49 being that my 1st Chevy was a well used 68 that a friend owned before me. I did notice that running regular fuel over the summits is still a questionable choice. Years ago with my 76 Chevy 1500Crew Cab, I found out that running higher octane really made a difference and that I could get up to 14mpg by using Octane boost on long hauls, over the 8 or so mpg that I would usually get. Now a days, the 76, known as Big Red has been our primary snow plow for the past 30 years and still runs great.


    A few days ago, I filled up with regular again, while knowing that we were going to be driving thru the valley and then I put in one last tank full of 87octane to go over the 4500' Oregon/California Siskiyou Summit and it was simply, OK. It made it over but the temp did creep up just a little from normal and my transmission went up from 178° to 196° and the power was simply OK, not great, but still more then enough. Basically the 5.3 litre feels like a standard 350 and tows just fine.


    Knowing that we were heading up over 7000', I switched over to premium 92octane, like I've been doing forever and had no problems at all accelerating and keeping it around 65, while going over the Flagstaff summit. The speed limit on that section is 75mph and we had a severe head wind and I have noticed that the gas milage really drops when you get over 65 and you can really feel the force in the cab that's being created at higher speeds with the Ollie in tow, neither of which are that aerodynamically designed to drive at that speed. Most of the time I kept it around 65 going over the summit but I did take it up to 75mph and watched my milage drop from around 7.2mpg, going up at 65 to 4.2 when climbing at 75mph. Still though my 50 mile average stayed around 7.2 mpg over the summit. Then on normal flat ground, I'm getting around 13.2 when towing at 60mph in California, which is a far cry from the 19.4mpg that our Mercedes would average... but that's a different story.


    So all in all, I'm real happy with my choice of truck and just like my friend Mark, who has the Duramax, we both slowed way down going over the summit with the 25mph headwind holding us back :)


    Running Premium 92 Octane makes a huge difference in the performance of the 1500 Chevy trucks. And if you know beforehand that you will be crossing over a high altitude summit, switching from regular to premium really makes a difference in both power and mpg. So if you own the 1500 and feel like it's dogging over the summits while towing your Ollie,make sure that you switch over to premium for at least that day. Most of the time, when not towing, I just run regular, but they do make Premium Grade Gasoline's for a reason... and that reason is better performance under certain circumstances.





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  2. We were on I40E outside of Kingman, Arizona about 1:30pm this afternoon and saw a west bound Elite with blue stripes. We waved but with the reflection, couldn't see thru the windows :)


    Then this afternoon, we pulled into the Rancho Sedona RV Park for the Scamp South West Fiberglass RV Rally, and met Jim & Sue in Hull #237... Of course being the nosey guy I am, I asked Jim if I could look at his sewer outlet.. Lol. I wanted to see if they had the sewer compartment fix that I initiated and wow, it looks real nice. Smooth aluminum, no diamond plate, straight access out of the bumper :)


    All is good :)



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  3. We sure love boondocking... And here in California, us retirees pay half the going rate in state parks, so we hit up Red Rock Canyon state park again on our way south to the Sedona, AZ Rally this Thursday and boondocked in the beauty of the place. There were only 2 other RV's in the place, so we had the whole back half of the campground to ourselves :)







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  4. Congratulations! I went to Hohenwald and took delivery of my Olliver Hull # 275 ! Spent a couple of nights in Hohenwald and then drove to Lake Guntersville State Park where the 2018 Oliver rally is going to be held.Very nice park ! On the delivery process i would recommend that maybe Oliver would do a series of videos of a customer taking delivery and explaining the different options that the trailer has so that those of us who are starting to have Alzheimer can review the videos and remember what was said. The other issue i had was that Oliver no longer gives the customer the manuals for the different systems that the unit has. Its all online at the University link. But if you dont have wifi you cant access them especially if you are boondocking so i guess the next best is to download each manual to your cloud account. Lastly the trip was fine, nd the Oliver pulled extremely well even without the Anderson hitch which was one of my do i get or not…


    Here's the PDF for the 2016 model. It helps and having both the 2016 & 2017 pdf's downloaded gives you almost all of the info. Oliver University is OK but you have to scroll thru. It would be nice if they had a downloadable PDF section as well. Jason gave me a link for the 2017 PDF, call him and then get it. I forgot to add it to our fb files page but it is listed there in the beginning of the Oliver owners Facebook page also after you scroll to the bottom.





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  5. It can be done. Currently you would Only hear a DVD sound when played through the TV but broadcast TV would only come from the TVs built in speakers. One possible work around would be using an Apple TV (feeding into the Furion aux input ) that you put on a wifi network from an iPad. iPads work much better than iPhones for picture quality as they have a better video chip. Then you would get Netflix, Hulu , HBO, some free CBS and ABC NEWS ETC. BUT ASSUMING YOU JUST WANT TO HEAR BROADCAST TV… 1. First come out of the optical digital out port on your TV using a optical cable. I suggest a wire world 6 cable or better. 2. Run the other end of the optical cable into a DAC you can buy a small one from CEntrance (the Mini -M8) and there are many other manufacturers. Run the output from the DAC into your Furion Aux input. Set your Furion to Aux when you play the TV to hear the sound from the TV. THIS IS OF COURSE…asssuming your the TV has a optical out but 95% of them do. I hope that helps. When I get my Oliver I’m putting in an amazingly clear audiophile grade HIFi and I’m going to replace the TV with something much better. I am going to use McIntosh Car amplifiers that have great parametric EQ modules so I can tailor the sound to overcome much of the acoustic short comings of the being in a fiberglass bread loaf shape. I will either use Boelender Greabner Neo 10 planar magnetic flat midranges or Scan Speak 12 Midranges, a special flat woofer from SB Acoustics, and super high quality tweeters. Head unit will be the Nakamichi TP -1200 tuner preamplifier. Sadly the speakers face down instead out out towards the listeners ears on the Olivers…not sure why this was done as it is not at all ideal for sound intelligibility which is particularly important to people as they age.


    That sounds like the killer set up. There are 3 speakers facing down, one over the dinette and 2 over the rear of the bed. Then one facing out over the closet. But there are lots of places to put speakers in the walls etc. You could even put them over the windows for outside sound or anywhere inside facing out instead of down. Placing speakers in the Ollie will be a snap and if you order it without the speakers then you won't have the unwanted holes under the cabinets.




    ... In general last month we had nightly lows of 16-38, and highs of 32-58. RH is HIGH in my spot here in MA-rivers, farms, in a valley.


    Don't sweat it, those temps are easy. Below 20° for a low, turn on the water heater at night...


    You just don't want to be hooked up to a water supply when it's below freezing because the water will freeze in the hose and work it's way inside. But filling the tank, then unhooking is no problem. Just drain out your hose and put it away. I just switched out our hoses to collapsible that fits into a Good Sam storage bag -





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  7. Hi Reed, thanks for commenting, I was thinking of you two andnyour success in cold weather. How long have you been in those kind of temperatures for continuously? Jason never mentioned that the water itself would be insulating for the air space…I hadn’t thought of that. I do have the Suburban heater, but the regular water tank. How do you see the on demand heater effecting the freeze risk as opposed to the regular system? When you mention winter mode is that a feature on the Truma or on the Suburban? Thanks, Julia


    Looks like we were typing at the same time :) We've been in hull #200 basically from February until the end of last winter and right now, we're in it just at the snow line at home in Alta, California. We bought the Truma for the winter mode because it just keeps the hot waterline above 37° but with the Suburban water heater, though it doesn't have a winter mode, you just leave it on with the tank full and that coupled with the heater is what keeps the basement warm enough to not worry about it down to 10°s for us so far. If it's going to be below that, I will be turning the Truma on for the night and that will keep the water heater at 118° and that coupled with the heater should be good to 0° but only time will tell :)



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  8. ...it sounds like something is amiss here. With that big old cold air return vent on the street side of the isle I wouldn’t think that it would be even possible to have that big a difference between the hulls (at least anywhere on the street side). Bill




    28° for a couple hours in the morning isn't going to freeze the pipes but what was the outside air temp, what time of day was it? Still with a tank full of water there isn't an issue above 10°, I haven't been below 10° in this trailer yet, but still it really depends on the average temp outside. Ours works fine in all seasons boondocking or not but when the temps really drop, I fill the tank and disconnect from outside water lines. They have heated RV hoses but I just haven't needed them myself. It sounds like a trip to the desert is in your forecast :)





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  9. When coming home we found a great spot to boondock off hwy299 at a Trinity River access location. There were no signs saying, no overnight camping, so we pulled in and had a nice quiet evening alone by the river...






    Deep in the canyon there was no cell service, so we spent another nice evening enjoying the beautiful area and having a great time. With no cell phone access, this place wasn't listed that we know of in the rvparky apps but what a wonderful find. I was hearing a ticking sound that I thought was coming from the wheels, so I retorqued them all again to 90lbs and the ticking was still there... It turned out to be Karen's new sign slapping the wall in the kitchen... Lol. Still though a couple of the nuts had backed off a touch and took an eighth of a turn, so it was time anyway. We never had these problems with the old steel rims back in the day but you do need to check these new aluminum rims and be sure not to over torque them because you can damage them. 90 foot pounds is standard for the newer rims and I noticed on the Oliver web site that is says for stage 3 use 120ftlbs... But you need to go by the torque specks for the rims and the owners manual says 90ftlbs which is where I set both the truck and the trailer.





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  10. When setting up to run below freezing, you need to have a tank full of water to help keep it warm down there. I don't see how you could get any numbers with only dead air space down below but then we've never tried a dry run. We've had it down to 18° with plenty of heat down there but we have a completely different configuration with the Suburban heater and the Truma tankless water heater that we are running in winter mode as it is snowing a little here tonight with about half of a tank of water.



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  11. We left mom's house on Monday and headed south down the Oregon Coast. Being that there was a volcano that went off in Indonesia, Tuesday and Wednesday were supposed to top out with 26' swells, so we headed to Brookings to one of our favorite campgrounds and spent a couple of nights at Harris State Beach and watched the huge waves pound the shoreline. This Campground is open year round but a lot of it is closed off during the Winter and this time there was only one spot open with the ocean view because of the work going on and we came in at just the right time. Lot's of fun and stopping to see the large waves come pounding in was breathtaking :)






    On our way down we found "Stray Cat City", in Gold Beach Oregon, located on the North Jetty.




    Brookings is right on the line between California and Oregon and we were heading home and once again saying good by to the Pacific Ocean...




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  12. I went with the tonneau this time also just because I didn't want to have to climb in to get things out. I have a utility cover sitting at home with the double doors on the back but still, the tonneau looks great and access is simple. Plus... Karen has ADHD, so IF I had a shell, she would have it packed to the roof with even more stuff, hehe. So, I do like my tonneau :)

  13. So I guess Oliver needs to start including tarps with their send-off kit! Maybe white with their logo on it. Seriously….what is going on here? Dave


    Well... You have to understand the type of downpour that we were in, millions of big round thumbnail size drops... We've been over on the Oregon coast this week and everyone here says how it rains so much, but we just came from home where it rains 25% more every year but in half the time... Lol... It rained on us here as usual but nothing came inside. It's actually a lot drier here on the coast then it was at home and the rain drops are the normal small 1/8" drops, give or take... We surprised Karen's mom, everyone drove up and we had a wonderful Thanksgiving at her house in Florence, OR. She was out when we got there and we had just finished setting up when she turned down the street on her way to the front of the house. She looked over, saw the trailer, did a double take, slammed on her brakes, then smiled :)


    It was a complete surprise :)





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  14. I dunno... I open mine up a third in the rain to get the blocks and chairs out and the rain gets in, but I do set up rain or shine either way. Nothing gets soaked but it does sweat some in high moisture areas I think also. But I am in high moisture areas quite a bit. I like my cover even though I and my truck get a little wet... but at times I do miss being able to stand under the back door of an opened shell and watch it raining out there, while it's still keeping me dry along with everything inside. This is the one that I have - http://rollnlock.com

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  15. The switch was toast but the fan was simple to work on from the inside. I pulled the 2 Phillips head screws out of the screen cover in the bathroom ceiling and it slid right out. Then I pulled the screw out of the motor cover housing and slid it down and found the switch wires were easy to get to though they were soldered in. I cut off the solder ties and we have a loop right now for the fan until I find a replacement switch, but it works again anyway :)

  16. I too have a Kaito weather alert radio on that list along with: a five gallon Solar shower bag, and LED lights for the basement. Got an early present a couple of days ago of LED lights for the bed of the truck – I slaved them off the two lights that can stock in the truck bed and they work great. ShallowGal – be careful of that 5 gallon water bag. I’ve never had one that didn’t leak after a short period of time. Primarily these leaks occur from the corners where the bag gets folded over and over. If you have the room to store it, I think that something like this makes better long term sense: https://www.amazon.com/Reliance-Products-Hydroller-Wheeled-Container/dp/B001QC78GK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1511965013&sr=8-1&keywords=8+gallon+water+container Bill


    The hydroller fits in the outside storage


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  17. Still have restricted access because we also have a cargo glide.

    Thanks Scotty….I’ll report how things work for me. I have been looking into different storage options for the truck bed….camper shell, tonneau cover, cargo slide. You’re the first (and only) person I know that uses the cargo slide so I’m curious if you like it and would recommend it. Do you also use a cover of some sort?


    We have the tonneau cover and just for reference, all tonneau covers do leak a little water, so keeping it dry in there if you live in a wet area is more difficult then with a shell. I've had shells for years and we bought a good tonneau cover that keeps most of the water out but still, not all, especially when it's really dumping. With the shell, you can raise the door and stand under it and stay dry. With the tonneau, you slide it open or raise it up and the water can get in. It's just something to think about.



  18. I do have to watch out for the basket as it is lined up with the bumper and I do make some tight turns at times that makes me wish that the basket wasn't there. But you can watch the trailer and the basket through the trucks back up camera. If I had it to do over, I would buy a trailer tongue box like Mike's. I would not buy the basket now that it has made backing in without full range an issue but... I have it and it does hold enough to still make it really useful, so I watch it in the camera and take it to the edge too often :)



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