Issue 1324, Wednesday, April 22, 2020
Welcome to another edition of RV Travel’s Daily Tips newsletter. Here you’ll find helpful RV-related and living tips from the pros, travel advice, a handy website of the day, tips on our favorite RVing-related products and, of course, a good laugh. Thanks for joining us. We appreciate you. Please tell your friends about us.
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“It is sometimes an appropriate response to reality to go insane.” ―
Need an excuse to celebrate? Today is Earth Day!
New Facebook Group: How the coronavirus is impacting RVers. Learn about park closings, cancelled rallies and RV shows — and more. Your input requested.
RV Life in a Coronavirus World: A free bicycle in Florida
We have asked RVtravel.com readers to tell us how they are adapting to life these days.
“On May 9, 2006, upon retirement, we left Kansas City, MO, as full-timers on our way to Alaska. We’ve spent the ensuing years exploring as much of North America as possible. Struggling sometimes to move on from some wonderful locations we stumbled upon, which called us to settle down again…” Continue reading Richard’s story.
Tip of the Day
Is it really safe to boondock?
Here’s an oldie but goodie from Bob Difley. Previous readers’ comments are left below the post for their useful information.
I’ve noticed that people who live in metropolitan areas have more uncertainty about their personal safety when boondocking than those who live in rural areas. I’m guessing that city dwellers feel more unsafe because boondocking away from any signs of civilization is a new and unknown experience.
It is especially so when the sun goes down and the stillness is broken only by the night sounds of skittering nocturnal animals, hooting and screeching of owls, and the howling of coyotes — and no street lights — rather than vehicle traffic, the hum of conversations, boomboxes, and TV sets, and all the other sounds that characterize an urban environment. Continue reading.
Do you have a tip? Submit it here.
All your trailer brakes should lock up at the same point
Chris Dougherty, certified RV technician, received a letter from a reader while he was serving as RVtravel.com’s technical editor regarding a brake issue on a new Coleman camper. The reader complained that one tire seemed to lock up first, while adjusting the brake controller. He wondered if there was a way to adjust the brakes to get them to brake together. Read Chris’ advice on when and how to adjust the trailer brakes.
Yesterday’s featured article: RV driving: Understanding grade signs
Readers tell us
Are you shopping more online now than a few months ago? Find out what fellow RVers said here.
Keep your immune system healthy! Here’s everything you need.
• NATIONAL TRAFFIC AND ROAD CLOSURE INFORMATION.
• ROAD AND TRAFFIC CONDITIONS ACROSS THE NATION.
• WEATHER ALERTS FROM THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE.
• CURRENT WILDFIRE REPORT.
• LATEST RV RECALLS.
Did you buy a lemon RV? Here’s more about RV lemons and lawyers who will represent you if you need help.
Size does matter
Is your vehicle licensed properly for its size? Some jurisdictions will move you from personal class to commercial class simply because of your licensed GVW. Be sure this doesn’t happen to you as the rules change significantly. Being classed commercial may limit your hours of driving, keeping log books, having restricted routes, need to carry specific equipment, etc. Check each state’s/province’s licensing page for the latest requirements. Thanks to George Bliss!
Coleman lanterns inspired by founder’s poor eyesight
A classic piece of equipment for generations of campers, hunters, anglers, farmers, soldiers and others who needed a convenient and reliable source of portable outdoor lighting, the Coleman lantern has gone through many changes over the years. W.C. Coleman first encountered the lamp that would change the course of his life in a drugstore window in 1899. Plagued with poor vision, Coleman was stopped in his tracks by the brilliant white light. Read this fascinating history of Coleman lanterns and let us know if you remember camping as a kid with one. (Hand raised.)
Easily hang heavy objects in your RV
RV walls aren’t exactly designed for having screws or nails driven into them. Enter acrylic mounting tape. This is a clear, double-sided tape that is sturdy enough to hang heavy objects and can easily be removed without doing damage to the walls. Get some here.
Random RV Thought
If you’re financially okay through this pandemic, consider giving some money to your local food bank. A lot of people are hurting now and could use your help. Your mood will improve hugely if you do this.
Website of the day
Video: Scenic National Park drives everyone should do at least once
Here’s a video from Travel + Leisure to inspire wanderlust! We wish we were on one of these beautiful drives right now…
Popular articles you may have missed at RVtravel.com
• RVer Safety: Look up when you park.
• Headed to Canada? An easy way to convert kilometers to miles.
• RV Short Stop: Visit Raquel Welch’s bra.
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.
Before you go throwin’ your crumbs, know that it is illegal to feed pigeons on the streets of San Francisco.
*What is the one letter that does not appear in the name of any U.S. state? We told you in yesterday’s trivia section.
Leave here with a laugh
Today’s Daily Deals at Amazon.com
Best-selling RV products and Accessories at Amazon.com. UPDATED HOURLY!
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RV PARKS OPEN FOR BUSINESS:
These parks are open for business for self-isolating and have asked that we spread the word.
Big Chief RV Resort, Burnet, TX
Walnut Hills Campground and RV Park, Staunton, VA
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RV Daily Tips Staff
Editor and Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Managing editor: Emily Woodbury. Senior editor: Diane McGovern. Advertising director: Jessica Sarvis. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen.
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I got so tired of batteries that I gave away the battery lanterns and went back to our propane lanterns. Wow what a difference it makes. We found a site on E Bay to replace the glass globe. So now I have three and love them. So start digging out those old propane lanterns. Glad we did.
Correction to my post: I meant to type 26,001 instead of 18,001.
Size does matter
Is your vehicle licensed properly for its size? Some jurisdictions will move you from personal class to commercial class simply because of your licensed GVW. Be sure this doesn’t happen to you as the rules change significantly. Being classed commercial may limit your hours of driving, keeping log books, having restricted routes, need to carry specific equipment, etc. Check each state’s/province’s licensing page for the latest requirements.
This is pure B.S. You may be out of range for a particular state mandated weight class, but even that doesn’t require a “Commercial” license. Please tell me one state that requires a Commercial license for a RV or combo that weighs over 18,001 lbs and is registered as a Recreational Vehicle.
I hate it when “experts” spout off opinions without a clue regarding the facts.
Driver licensing The requirements in your home state for the driver applies in all 50. It’s called reciprocity. “Commercial” licensing is different and you can review laws here http://changingears.com/rv-sec-state-rv-license.shtml
To add to scenic drives (we’ve been fortunate to do most of them mentioned). Visit Humboldt County, CA near Benbow/Garberville. The Avenue of the Giants. Breathtaking. We stay at a KOA, in Benbow, every year. They have a 9 hole challenging golf course. And the historic Benbow Inn is across the freeway. There is a path to walk under freeway so don’t have to drive. Even if you don’t eat at the restaurant (pricey) or have a drink in the bar, it’s a beautiful hotel with lots of history. We alway take the drive thru the Redwoods. Sometimes multiple times, as we stop at the roadside vegetable/fruit stands in/near Pepperwood (not a town, use to be before the horrific 100 yr flood in 1964. If you look closely when driving 101 you can see markers on the south side (also visible traveling north) of freeway…high up….showing flood height. Hard to fathom.) You can make a shorter trip by returning or going via 101 freeway, then hop on the Avenues of Giants going north or south. There are a number of freeway exits if you don’t want to do the whole drive. Pack a lunch and stop along the way to eat up these beautiful “giants”. Or visit and hike at the numerous state parks. Or drive a winding drive to the coast at Shelter Cove.
About the size does matter…. In California you must have a Class B non-commercial drivers license (NCDL) if your motorhome is longer than 40′. I don’t think there is a “model 40” motorhome made that is not longer than 40′ and would fall into this law. However, I bet 90% or more of “model 40” motorhome owners registered in California do not have this license.
In Texas, a Class B non-CDL (exempt) is required for any RV motorhome weighing 26,001 lbs. or more GVWR.
We imagine a number of RV owners/drivers in SC are not aware of the change in license requirement, as well, if: 1) your motor home is above a certain length/weight, AND/OR 2) you plan to tow an additional vehicle behind the RV. Passing these “new” testing requirements is truly an adjustment for a newbie!
I own a popular DPMH from the early 2000’s. During a FB discussion with another owner of the same model coach, I discovered our basement keys were the same, just not the CH751 in your article. I searched my key code and found it was a common key code also, used in fuel doors & cargo compartments. I think I’m going to find a new set of key cylinders.
I have not heard of anyone who was somehow designated as a “commercial” driver or vehicle because of their RV, and then had to conform to truck driver rules and regulations. Logbooks no longer exist, replaced by “Electronic Logging Devices”. Just sayin’ . . . .
In Nevada a Class A CDL is required. From Nevada ODT …(If the trailer’s GVWR exceeds 10,0000 lbs., a Class A CDL is needed).
I broke out my DL (Nevada) to see what it says. Class A,M. GCWR > 26,000. Trailer > 10,000. I guess I’m fine.
When I retired from trucking I was going to keep my CDL – just in case (whatever that means – ha) but the cost to do that was more than I wanted to pay, especially for the HazMat endorsement. So I got the highest grade of everyday Joe DL I could for cheap.
If the trailer is over 10,000 (like most 5’ers) you need a CDL? Never heard of that. That doesn’t mean it’s not so, but nobody I know has a CDL for their 5’er.
Tommy – tragedies each year on this continent resulting from people over buying their abilities in the Recreational sector is stunning. That there’s no special licensing for RV operators – (I’d start with anything with dual wheels or over 30 feet) is amazing given the ease with which it could be fixed with a little training = knowledge of just what forces are at play when things go bad!
The trivia section is funny. You can’t feed pigeons crumbs on the sidewalk of San Francisco, but you can crap and pee on the sidewalks and that is legal. Go figure
I’d say their priorities are messed up, a lot messed up. I decided years ago to never stop or stay near San Fran nor Berkeley. We used to visit my daughter in humboldt and never stopped to see what it was all about, made sure we filled up with fuel before getting to the area and cruised on through. Nothing like having to pay a toll to cross the bridge and escape.
We live 50 miles south of SF. Visit Humboldt area every year. Nice park in Benbow w/golf course. Avenue of the Giants (Redwoods) great drive in car or smaller RV, (somewhat narrow roads). We avoid SF too, visiting as well as driving. Take 680 up to 37 (via Benicia Bridge) to 101.
But there is a state name that begins with Q. Quarantine:)
Unfortunately that is correct, A B. 🙁 —Diane at RVtravel.com
As far as donating and volunteering at food banks. We do donate and volunteer to many when we can. My problem is seeing the people that do not work, and live off government money, coming into the food banks for free food.
They are the ones that should consider volunteering.
It’s tough to discern sometimes between folks that need help and those that are mooching. Be very careful when judging.
True, but most food bank rules do not require proof of need. Something to do with being truly “christian based”. Bravo to them!
Bob we’re with you completely on this one. My lovely lady and I give generously, and do a ton of volunteer work in our community, but one area we will not contribute to is peoples dependency on others to give them what they should earn. In Canada the entire food bank thing began in the early 70’s in Edmonton Alberta, and off shoot of churches caring for those who’d been flooded out, had everything destroyed in a fire, and so on – in other words events in their lives they couldn’t have predicted would leave them on the street with nothing. Food Banks and the like today have become super huge monolith with tons of hidden government funding the average person has no clue about.
Long and short, those of us who’ve never taken a nickel from anyone, and who have given back, and continue to give back in multitudes of ways – observe huge swaths of humans degenerate into the abyss simply because its the path of least resistance, and we’ll judge, yes we will, and we’ll have no part of it.
This attitude would change radically if there were some vetting to separate the lazy bum from the seriously needy woman with two kids in tow whose husband just abandoned her on the side of the road.
Until that time arrives we’ll continue to “give back” in ways that do not support a burgeoning human tragedy.
There will ALWAYS be people who will take advantage. But just don’t look at the food banks and think of the poor. Our corporations are not different. Just look at what happened with the first round of loans to small businesses. The multimillion dollar corporations were first in line and to receive loans.
food banks, consider volunteering at a Food Bank. Most of us volunteers have gray to silver white hair. Youth and middle aged folks rarely volunteer, but like Hobbits, they are always hungry.