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April 3, 2021
Non-Members (advertising supported) edition
This free edition of the RVtravel.com newsletter is posted at 9 a.m. (Pacific) every Saturday (that’s noon in the East). The member edition is published seven hours earlier, at 2 a.m. (Pacific). Readers who make even a one-time financial contribution to this website and newsletter automatically receive a permanent subscription to the member edition, ready for reading first thing with their morning coffee (or other beverage).
With Chuck Woodbury
There is much to report. For starters, I am thrilled to tell you that our inaugural RVtravel.com podcast will debut tomorrow. You will love it! You can listen to it as you read tomorrow’s newsletter or while driving down the road. Just click the sound bar in tomorrow’s issue. Host Scott Linden describes the podcast as “radio for the 21st century.” I even make an appearance in this first of our weekly programs. Your participation in the future is invited: Scott will tell you about that.
Second, we debuted a brand new daily cooking feature earlier this week. You’ll see the “Recipe of the Day” toward the bottom of each issue of our weekend and daily newsletters. If you enjoy cooking you will find thousands of delicious recipes from home cooks (and those in RVs) but tested by professional chefs to be sure the recipes live up to their billings. If you are still searching for a yummy dessert for tomorrow, maybe some Ole Fashioned Iced Easter Bunny Cookies would do the trick.
ISSUE 1,000 COMING SOON
Finally, as you may have noticed, this is issue 994 of our weekly Saturday newsletter. I wrote in issue 500, back on September 24, 2011, that I hoped to make it to issue 1,000. I was 64 then. Honestly, I had my doubts, whether for health reasons or because of dealing with an elderly brain. But here I am, still healthy, with my brain functioning at 87.2 percent, and loving every single moment of my work. I am planning a big announcement in issue 1,000 on May 8. I have devoted more than 20 years to this website and newsletter and it’s time for a role change. So stay tuned.
Okay, gotta go now. I have a huge desire to eat some Peeps! Gotta love those cute little bunnies! (Do you buy Peeps at Easter? Please answer my Peep poll.)
IN TOMORROW’S NEWSLETTER: The good ol’ days of just driving to a National Park, paying your fee, and then entering may be ending. Is this our future? ALSO: Many of us now have our COVID shots and feel a new sense of freedom. If so, why are some of us fearful of heading out? PLUS: A court has ruled that Goodyear withheld evidence in a motorhome tire blowout case. The judge has ordered the tire company to pay up.
Write for us!
We are looking for writers — to report news and/or write feature articles. We pay. Previous writing experience required. If interested, tell us about yourself here. Must know RVing inside-out and respect journalism as a noble cause.
Stories in tomorrow’s newsletter
• Dealing with the fear of getting out again in your RV. Are you ready?
• Goodyear Tire must pay for hiding evidence from RVers
• It’s literally unreal! $2.5 million paid for as-yet non-existent Hummer
• The joke’s on Volkswagen after April Fool’s prank badly backfires
• New pickup truck sneak peak: 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz
• National park entry reservations – Will this be the new normal?
PLUS: Campground updates • Latest fuel prices • Latest RV recalls • Free and bargain camping locations • Reader survey • and much more …
Are we worth something to you?
RVtravel.com, and the hundreds of newsletters about RVing we publish every year, would not be possible without the financial support of our voluntary contributors. Their support helps us avoid relying on advertising, and keeps our resource-rich work unbiased and free for all RVers to enjoy. Every contribution makes a difference. A donation of $20 a year comes out to a mere 4 cents for each issue we publish. That’s all! And when you contribute, you’ll receive a special member-only ad-free version of this newsletter forever and ever as one way for us to say thank you. Learn more or donate.
Last week’s Tip of the Day highlights in RV Daily Tips Newsletters
• Downsizing to become full-time RVers
• Tire wear and tear – What to check
• Dirty tile floors? Use these tips and products to clean your RV’s floor
• Battery storage problems caused by cold weather
• Don’t skimp on sleep! Tips to get better sleep in your RV
Today, industry insider Tony Barthel reviews the new 2021 Lance 1172 Truck Camper. Many people don’t consider truck campers because they’re too small or aren’t as nicely designed as other RVs. But to that, Tony counters with the new Lance 1172. See what he’s talking about – maybe you’ll change your mind.
Last week’s reviews:
2021 Jayco Jay Flight Octane 255 Toy Hauler • Leisure Travel Vans Wonder RTB Class C • Cherokee 274RK Travel Trailer • Thor Hurricane 34J Class A Gas Motorhome • Thor Vegas 24.1 Class A
Clintoons • By Clint Norrell
MORE OF CLINT
See some of Clint’s recent cartoons. They’re wonderful!
Campground Crowding: It’s all about the journey, not the destination… right?
More people than ever are taking up RVing. The result is campground crowding like never before. In this weekly blog, RV Travel readers discuss their experiences. This week our readers comment again on the good ol’ days but also say not to begrudge the newbies; having to book way in advance … or not; and the philosophical approach (which we should all heed) of don’t dwell on the negatives, embrace the positives … Plus much more here.
New (or any) RVers – There is hope! You CAN find campsites!
Are you one of the thousands of new RVers or looking to become one? Are you discouraged by the headlines and statements you read in this newsletter and elsewhere, such as: The need to make reservations a year in advance; “Not in my backyard” objections to proposed RV parks; RV ownership at an all-time high and millions more planning to buy; The ability to go where you want, when you want is a thing of the past. Dave Helgeson offers words of encouragement to both new RVers and longtime RVers, along with many suggestions of finding campsites outside of traditional campgrounds, here.
Last year at this time, these were the most popular articles
• From editor Chuck Woodbury, hiding out in Arizona
• How a caring RV park owner acts in hard times
• Hilarious video: Trust no one! (This was at the beginning of the pandemic, BTW.)
• Campsite “site length” restrictions. What do they really mean?
How does meal preparation in your RV compare to doing it in a traditional home kitchen?
Please let us know. After you click your response, you’ll see how others have responded. Feel free to leave a comment. CLICK HERE.
The most popular poll in this past week’s RV Daily Tips newsletters:
Which kind of chocolate is your favorite – dark, milk, or white? See how almost 2,200 other RVers responded (then go get some chocolate!).
Read other polls we’ve run through the years. There are more than a thousand. It’s fascinating reading.
The cost of making only the maker knows, valueless if bought, but sometimes traded. A poor man may give one as easily as a king. When one is broken, pain and deceit are assured. What is it?
(Answer in tomorrow’s Sunday news newsletter.)
Do you have a brain teaser you think we should use? Send it to us here.
Casino Camping: 3 casino RV resorts where you’ll want to stay
This week, many RVtravel.com readers and Facebook friends had some great advice and also a few warnings about casino camping and gambling to pass along. Keep reading for an in-depth look at three reader favorites.
Towing FAIL! These people hitch their fifth wheel backwards!
OMG! Our eyeballs nearly popped out of our heads when we saw this short video. Can you believe this is real? These people hitched up their fifth wheel backward. We can only imagine the damage this will cause!! What would you do if you were pumping gas and saw this person drive away like this? We sure hope someone ran up and told them to stop driving… Check this out!
Trailer “tail-wagging” – Prevent this dangerous sway from happening to you
By Gail Marsh
What does a dog’s tail have to do with towing an RV? Turns out, a lot! Not knowing about the “wagging dog’s tail” can mean disaster. In fact, “the tail wagging the dog” syndrome is a main cause of trailer accidents today. It’s one of the reasons why many would-be RVers quit RVing after just one season. Continue reading.
Is this your RV?
If it’s yours and you can prove it to us (send a photo for comparison), tell us here by 9 p.m. Pacific Daylight time today, April 3, 2021. If it’s yours you’ll win a $25 Amazon gift certificate.
If this isn’t your RV, send us a photo of your RV (if you haven’t already) for a chance to win in future issues.
Last week two readers claimed their $25 Amazon gift cards: Christopher N. of Seal Rock, Oregon, and Steve B. of Snelling, California.
We’ll have another photo in tomorrow’s newsletter (sign up to receive an email alert so you don’t miss the issue or those that follow). Some of these photos are submitted by readers while others were taken by our editors and writers on their travels around the USA.
Popular articles from last week
• Starlink – Internet access from outer space coming soon to your RV?
• Will having an “Immunity Passport” allow us to travel? Here’s what we know
• RVelectricity – Cool trailer plug storage option
• Don’t skimp on sleep! Tips to get better sleep in your RV
• Good News: Things to smile about this week, March 28, 2021
• RV shipments continue to soar, new record set
• Campground and RV Park News, March 27, 2021
• RVelectricity: Accidental reversed polarity adapter
• Heavy load: Ford regains towing honors in half-ton trucks
• Full-timer pleads, “PLEASE don’t buy me anything!”
• Rent out your RV? It might be a great time to give it another look
?????? MYSTERY PRODUCT OF THE DAY ??????
You obviously need this for your happy little RV…
How would you like to win this?
This is a great drone for beginners, but anyone who flies it will love it. It takes great videos at 720 dpi.
How to win
We’ll select a winner at random out of all entries we receive today (April 3, 2021) by 7 p.m. Pacific time. Remember, you can only enter once and after we notify you by email via RVcontests@gmail.com that you won, you have 24 hours to respond or we’ll give the prize to someone else.
Sta-Bil Rust Stopper stops rust and corrosion
Of the many gremlins that attack your RV, like mold, mildew, leaks and black streaks, rust is the gremlin that will attack your hand tools, spare parts, door hinges and other vulnerable metal surfaces and moving parts over time. STA-BIL® Rust Stopper prevents rust and corrosion by protecting metal surfaces with a long-lasting barrier while lubricating parts and tools to stop squeaks and sticking. Learn more in this article.
Stolen RVs — Help us recover these stolen RVs. The more eyes we have searching for them, the better chance of getting them back to their rightful owners, and maybe putting the crooks who stole them in the slammer! See the stolen RVs.
NEW: Check out all our favorite websites of the day! We compiled a list of (almost) all the websites we’ve ever posted, and we update it weekly.
Where to complain about bad RVs, dealers, service, RV parks. This is an ever-expanding list of resources where you can report, share or discuss your problems with RV manufacturers or dealers.
Best Club for RVers: Escapees. Click here to learn more or join. Endorsed by RVtravel.com.
Directory of RV parks with storm shelters
In case you’re on the road with your RV and the weather report is showing a tornado headed your way, have this list handy.
What does financing an RV for 20 years REALLY mean?
In case you missed this article the first time around, here it is again. Important! Click here.
Stuck with a lemon RV? Contact Ron Burdge, America’s premier RV lemon law attorney.
RV education you can trust from RV Education 101: Get instant access to RV Online Training.
Something better than duct tape? Yup.
Duct tape is the greatest thing for on-the-fly repairs of all kinds. But you may want to add Waterproofing Repair Tape to your tape deck. The manufacturer claims this stuff is so good that it’ll stick to almost anything, and it’ll do it even underwater. Read more about this handy tape here. Trust us, it’s sticky, durable, and you’ll want some for yourself.
RV Gadgets and Gizmos
With Tony Barthel
FIREDISC®, a “wok on legs,” makes cooking fun for the whole family
Tony writes, “Like every other child on the block I love new toys, so when FIREDISC® Cookers reached out and asked if I was interested in trying one of their cookers, I figured I’d give it a try.” See what he thinks of the FIREDISC, and, maybe more importantly, see what he cooks on it. Mmmm…
If you ever doubt Americans’ ingenuity, just follow my gadget column here on RV Travel. I’ve talked to a number of inventors right here in America who have created some slick stuff that makes camping and RVing more enjoyable. Morrison Outdoors is just such a company with their baby and kids’ sleeping bags. The company was started by founder Tavis Malcolm, who really enjoyed camping and hiking a lot and thought his new baby, Morrison, should be able to go along. But after looking for a sleeping bag for the tyke, he decided to make one himself. Read more and see his brilliant solution.
Scam Alert on Magic Air Conditioners
As part of my continuing effort to help you avoid electrical gadget scams, here’s an interesting one that was emailed to me a few days ago about a magic air conditioner that runs from USB power (less than 5 watts) and supposedly cools your entire office area. According to all the marketing hype, this gadget will help save the planet because you’ll no longer have to spend thousands of dollars on an “evil” conventional air conditioner, and won’t have to pay the utility company hundreds of dollars a month in electric bills. So, could this be true? Find out here.
This week’s J.A.M. (Just Ask Mike) Session
Accidental reversed polarity adapter
At one end of my trailer I have a 50-amp shore power; the other end I put in a 30-amp plug for my generator divided by a transfer switch. Both ends test good on the trailer with a three light tester. I have a Yamaha EF3000iSEB. Testing per your video it shows an open ground. When I install the n-g plug it shows good. But when I hook the trailer to the generator, the trailer shows an open ground. When I install the n-g plug the trailer shows hot/neutral reverse indication on the tester. Any ideas? Thanks. —Ron
RV Tire Safety
Is “sealant” a good fix for a flat tire?
By Roger Marble
NHTSA (DOT) – Improper Repairs: “A plug by itself is not an acceptable repair” to fix a flat tire. “The proper repair of a punctured tire requires a plug for the hole and a patch for the area inside the tire that surrounds the puncture hole.” “Punctures through the tread can be repaired if they are not too large. But punctures to the sidewall should not be repaired.” “Tires must be removed from the rim to be properly inspected before being plugged and patched.” NOTE: Michelin, Goodyear and Bridgestone say the same thing. Learn more.
Building an RV Park
Waiting for the bank; and rocks, rocks and more rocks!
By Machelle James
I’m nervous and I’m stalling to write my article. The bank is reviewing our loan at this very moment and I am a bundle of nerves. … We’ve been down this road at least 7 times and it never gets easier. Banks either like the idea of a campground or they don’t. There is no gray area for campgrounds in the land of commercial loans. This is the biggest hurdle we will have faced since we decided to pursue our Campground dreams. While I sit/stand/pace here and wait, I do have construction news to share. Continue reading.
RV Short Stop
Visit America’s National Parks & Volunteer on your RV Short Stop
By Julianne G. Crane
Millions of us love America’s National Parks. So much so, collectively, we may be loving them to exhaustion. RVing families can help and have fun together while doing something worthwhile. National Park Week, April 17 – 25, is a great time to discover lesser known national parks. Try exploring amazing new places and discovering stories of history. Make it even more meaningful by volunteering at these treasures. Learn more and get involved.
RV Fire Safety
An emergency fire plan that can save your life – Part 13 of 13
Having a solid fire escape plan may help you replace panic with logical, life-saving actions if a fire occurs. Knowing exactly what to do and doing it quickly can make a big difference in an emergency situation.
Hopefully, you’ll never have to put your fire plan into action. However, if you do, remember to keep calm and to get out of your coach like you practiced during fire drills. Stay focused on your prime objective – getting yourself and your passengers out of the RV safely.
If you missed any part of this emergency fire plan series, or need a refresher course, you can read those important tips here.
Courtesy: Mac “The Fire Guy” McCoy
Having this might save your life!
Reader Bill Jeffrey writes, “Add a marine air horn to your emergency pack. Small, light, cheap, easy to use, and can be heard for miles. They are way louder than you can yell. They double as a deterrent to scare away coyotes, bears, and so forth, and can also be used to re-unite parties that have gotten separated. You can get them on Amazon for a good price. They weigh only a few ounces and easily drop into your day bag.”
Recipe of the Day
Missy’s Creamy Deviled Eggs
by Melissa Dommert from Baytown, TX
Deviled eggs are an easy appetizer and we like Melissa’s Cajun twist. Adding cream cheese makes the filling super creamy with a velvety texture. Sweet relish adds a touch of sweetness to the filling. They sort of taste like egg salad. Yum!
Oh, and if you’re like us and loooove deviled eggs, you need this.
American Prohibition Museum
The American Prohibition Museum is filled with interesting artifacts from the old prohibition days. The exhibits take you through the Temperance Movement, where organizations fought for a legal ban on alcohol, and run all the way through until alcohol was no longer prohibited. Learn about the gangsters and rum runners who stirred up trouble during the era, and even learn how to make moonshine from a “local.” You can celebrate the end of prohibition at the real, operating hidden speakeasy, halfway through the museum (cocktail, anyone?). For anyone who wants to raise their spirits, plan your visit here.
These are essential for your RV’s toolbox!
A set of Nite Ize Gear Ties is a must-have in your RV’s toolbox! These reusable rubber twist ties have a soft, grippy rubber coating and a metal inside that allows you to bend and flex them over and over into whatever shape you need. Tony Barthel uses them in his home and RV for many things and suggests you don’t go anywhere without them. Read more.
Letters to the editor
Stop starting “firestorms”
This is a simple request to you and your writing staff! I wish you would STOP, STOP, STOP starting firestorms, like last week’s “Virus Passport” article. You had to know this was gonna bring out every negative comment that can be thought of.
This article has little to do with RVing and unless we start seeing RV parks requiring such Passports in order to get a reservation or be allowed to camp at that location, then it has nothing to do with RVing! I for one am NOT in favor of any kind of Vaccine Passport!
So, like other controversial articles that have NOTHING to do with RVing, please stop posting these things!
I have completely stopped posting or making any comments to RV Travel. — Jeff T.
Keep insects and bird nests out of your furnace
Wasps, mud daubers, birds and rodents pose a serious threat to the furnace on your RV. They can enter through the furnace vents. Their nests can interfere with air flow and cause serious damage. Camco 42141 (Model FUR 200) Flying Insect RV Furnace Screen fits Duo-therm and Suburban furnace vents. Camco offers several furnace screens so check which one will fit your vent. Learn more or order.
Readers’ Pet of the Day
“This is our 19-month-old Chihuahua, Hansel. We adopted him from the Humane Society in March of 2020. He loves camping in our 5th wheel and every place we visit is a new adventure with all the new smells to sniff and trees and posts to mark as his territory. His favorite thing to do is sit on our laps outside and chomp at any bug that dares come our way.” —Janine T.
Vintage Postcard of the Week
Postcards owned by Colleen and Ed Weum, Pacific Northwest Postcard Club. Read more about their 90,000 postcard collection here.
“The Simpsons” is the longest-running animated series in the U.S. It is now on season 32 and has had the most guest stars ever featured on a TV series. If you were to watch every episode straight without commercials or sleeping, it would take you almost 9 days.
Laugh of the Week
A few sayings that made us laugh:
• Whatever you do, always give 100%… unless you’re donating blood.
• I’ve finally told my suitcases there will be no holiday this year. Now I’m dealing with the emotional baggage.
• If you’re not supposed to eat at night, why is there a light bulb in the refrigerator?
• What did Snow White say when she came out of the photo booth? “Someday my prints will come.” —Thanks to Gordon Bates for sending these.
Leave with a song from the past
Oh, this will get your feet tapping – an oldie but goodie from ABBA, the sensation from the late 20th century with a unique sound that sent the group’s tunes to the top of the charts.
Did you miss last week’s RV Travel?
RV Travel staff
Editor and Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Editor: Emily Woodbury. Managing editor: Diane McGovern. Senior editors: Russ and Tiña De Maris. Senior writers: Nanci Dixon, Tony Barthel. Contributors: Mike Sokol, Roger Marble, Dave Helgeson, Janet Groene, Julianne Crane, Chris Guld, Machelle James, James Raia, Kate Doherty, Gail Marsh, Mike Gast, J.M. Montigel, Clint Norrell, Randall Brink and Andrew Robinson. Social media and special projects director: Jessica Sarvis. Moderators: Gary Gilmore, Linda Brady. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen.
FOREVER IN OUR MEMORIES — OUR STAFF MEMBER IN HEAVEN, Gary Bunzer, the RV Doctor, who was taken from us by the coronavirus.
Honorary Correspondents: Loyal readers who regularly email us leads about news stories and other information and resources that aid our own news-gathering efforts.
• Mike Sherman • George Bliss • Tom and Lois Speirs • Steve Barnes • Tom Hart + others who we will add later.
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Everything in this newsletter is true to the best of our knowledge. But we occasionally get something wrong. We’re just human! So don’t go spending $10,000 on something we said was good simply because we said so, or fixing something according to what we suggested (check with your own technician first). Maybe we made a mistake. Tips and/or comments in this newsletter are those of the authors and may not reflect the views of RVtravel.com or this newsletter.
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