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Old 08-05-2014, 05:31 PM   #41
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Don't forget to add in the cost of removing bedbugs from your home after you have stayed in that $200 a night hotel room.
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Old 08-05-2014, 06:34 PM   #42
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Also, don't forget that many motels don't let you bring in dogs. If they do, it costs you.
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Old 08-05-2014, 07:49 PM   #43
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RV novice-point me in the right direction

Man, Incontrol, I don't know where to begin.

We've been all through Maine and never, anywhere, have we had to do minimum stays. We can camp for free in national forests, $13-$16 primitive in state forests, $25 for electric. Our batteries in the truck camper last four nights without hitting 50%. One night plugged in charges them fully. I don't think we've EVER paid $40 for a night, and more often than not we can carry the canoe from the campsite to the water - and still see the camper.

What setup? Pull in, look at the level on the dash, maybe pull around a bit so we're not off more than half a bubble, then go in back and open the slide. Plug in if there's electric. All of five minutes. Maybe. The TC stays in the truck, unless we're there for an extended stay. Then we might take the TC ought, but doubtful. No need to. The places we want to get to can be accessed by foot, pedal or paddle. And that 4x4 diesel and TC rig will take us places trailers, fivers, and often times passenger cars won't go. Neighbors? Not all that often. Unless they're furry and four legged. We consider campgrounds a form of hell.

There's always a bathroom available within ten feet on the road. We know who's used it, and we have no bedbugs. The sheets are clean and unstained. Or at least we know stained them and with what lol. No used needles under the mattress. No fear of getting foot fungus from previous tenants in the shower. No water shoes needed. The carpets are clean.

And we don't make reservations or specific plans we head that away, maybe with a specific place to get to - eventually. That's flexibility.

I forget what all your complaints were, but I was amazed as there are simple solutions for each. But do it your way, please. More people in hotels and campgrounds with hookups mean fewer out where the real serenity is.





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RV novice-point me in the right direction
Old 08-05-2014, 08:05 PM   #44
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From Incontrol:

I looked into this idea, purchased a used, cheap, camper and gave it a try I discovered the following.

> It's work - setting up and tearing down camp is work. You can minimize it but be aware that the black water tank gets flushed before the grey one.

"No it's not. Even if I decide to take the TC off the truck, it's easy. No hurry."

> It's not as cheap as you may think. Camp site prices have climbed and are now close to chain hotel prices.

"Depends on what conveniences you must absolutely have. I've never stayed anywhere with prices near chain hotel prices."

> You may not get a great camp site - being stuck next to others that maybe unpleasant can be unpredictable

"Be more unpleasant lol. Better yet, don't go where there a great number of other people. Or other people at all. Don't go where the weekender or the vacationer goes for parties or to let the kiddies run wild. Do a little research online to find places the lame and lazy don't wish to go, because they no TV, or hookups, or even no cell service. They're generally the unpleasant ones: not those who go out looking for peace and quiet - and conveniences other than those they carry in and take back out."

> RV's and trucks get 15-20mpg - so driving around is expensive

"We average about 13. We don't 'drive around'. We travel and camp to get away from people and the places most people drive to. We drive a few hours, park, then we hike, paddle, bike and enjoy nature. In a day or two, we drive a few hours..."

> People who live in RV's that i know prefer 5th wheels. Freeing up a vehicle when camped.

"Some people in RVs prefer fivers. Most people I hang with wouldn't have one. What's the point in leaving your house if you're just going to live in another one? We've been home three days from the UP, and I'm ready to leave again. A friend's in Virginia at the moment, and another in Colorado - sleeping in or out of his Tacoma... Both have sent invites lol."

> RV's need maintenance just like a house so expect to have to fix stuff in tight spaces

"We use our TC like a hard shell tent that needs no construction or taking down. Not a lot there to go wrong. The truck needs periodic maintenance and repair, as any other *shrug*. No more, no less."

If you want to really try this I would suggest renting an RV. I know someone who did this to travel the country and had a blast. Once they were done they handed in the RV and had a whole new perspective.

"Renting first is always a good option. We didn't do that lol. We tent camped all our lives until BS went off to college. Then an older B, then our TC. Love it. Decide what you like to do, and choose the method you'd best enjoy. RVing can be done more expensively, or inexpensively, depending on your 'needs'. Or at least, your wants...

Just don't need or want much."

Www.cheaprvliving.com







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Old 08-05-2014, 08:55 PM   #45
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The bedbug thing is not a joke. That's the one thing that has me considering an RV. We ran into our first bedbug situation at a hotel last year. It was not pleasant. I had to treat all our travel goods like toxic waste when we got home, and we had to decontaminate ourselves. It is a real hassle.

Our BIG problem. No place to store the RV at home.
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Old 08-05-2014, 09:27 PM   #46
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Also, don't forget that many motels don't let you bring in dogs. If they do, it costs you.
This is a biggie. It's hard to find a place that accepts dogs to start with. If you do, expect to pay $50-$75 extra. I'm pretty darn sure they aren't doing anything special to that room after we check out with our smells- better-than-most-people 12lb poodle, but they want $75 extra just the same.

And with an RV, we could go to the big family get-together, visit with everyone at Granny's, but not take up one of her bedrooms.
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Old 08-06-2014, 08:41 AM   #47
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Yeah but, but, but...... the view from Super 8 is not that great..but what about the view of an EXPENSIVE RV sitting next to your house for 48 weeks of the year, making 500 plus dollar a month payments PLUS insurance...while the grass grows around the wheels and it depreciates 1000 dollars a month...then it won't start, the systems don't work, the tires are getting old ( LEARN about RV tires BEFORE you buy!!!!) and need to be replaced at 200 dollars plus a piece..

I'd get a hotel for 200 dollars a night on the beach...
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With the exception of those who full-time, buying a RV is rarely a cost saving endeavor. RV'ing is a hobby and hobbies cost money.
Make no mistake about it, an RV is expensive for people who still work and can use it only a few days out of a year. Even for retirees who use it for long trips, of course it costs a lot less just to stay home and watch the Travel channel.

Some people like this mode of travel and some don't. It is an expensive mistake to buy a new RV and find out that you belong in the latter group. Just recently, I browsed RVTrader Web site for fun, and saw a class A diesel pusher for sale at $50K, with only 11K miles on it after 12 years or so. That's sad.

We always love to travel, and did it by the fly-and-drive mode before I bought a class C. Then, I discovered that the RV allowed us to visit places that fly-and-drive would not let us see. And long road trips are so much nicer with an RV instead of staying in countryside motels and eating at hamburger joints all the time.

With a solar panel, as long as I do not need AC I can go for 3 or 4 days without hookup, and only need to visit a campground every so often to dump the tanks, take longer showers, surf the Web, check my stocks, etc... The motorhome has an onboard generator that's convenient, but it's much better if I do not need to run it.

We will still do fly-and-drive travel, but for the continental US (and Alaska too), I prefer RV'ing now as we can go for 1 or 2 months at a time.
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Old 08-06-2014, 09:02 AM   #48
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Back on the OP's question about what RV to use, in his shoes, I would go with something smaller and more mobile than a big A or 5th wheel as he plans to travel full-time for only one year. One year is not a long time to travel across the US and perhaps Alaska too.

From the blogs that I have read, people who plan to full-time for many years travel slowly. They have the time, plus constantly moving is tiresome, costs money for gas and for campground fees. Hence, they usually stay at least 1 week at a commercial campground, or 1 month at a time down south in the winter. That way, they pay less with the weekly or monthly rates.

As I travel more intensively for sightseeing (I have two homes to come back to), my 25-ft class C towing a toad works out fine for us. A class A or a 5th-wheel would be way too cumbersome for me. For my travel, I can go smaller than what I have now, but definitely not larger. Somebody who is going full-time for 1 year may have a different need, as something like mine may be too confining, let alone a camper or small B.
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Old 08-08-2014, 07:17 AM   #49
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I found this this morning was thinking of this post so I thought of sharing. Converting a school Bus!!!! Check out what this amazing family did. And its inexpensive.

Simply b Photos » The Big Blue Bus Tour

Enjoy!
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Old 08-08-2014, 07:31 AM   #50
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I found this this morning was thinking of this post so I thought of sharing. Converting a school Bus!!!! Check out what this amazing family did. And its inexpensive.

Simply b Photos » The Big Blue Bus Tour

Enjoy!
A couple of decades ago, I had a neighbor that converted and re-sold old school buses into campers like in the article. Not fancy, but functional.
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Old 08-08-2014, 07:33 AM   #51
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Gosh - Getting a bus is easy! If we did this I would go with a small one.

Bus Sales New Used, School Buses Commercial Church Bus Airport Shuttles Limo Buses Wheelchair Vans all on Sale!
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Old 08-08-2014, 07:40 AM   #52
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Gosh - Getting a bus is easy! If we did this I would go with a small one.
Ask Sarah in SC about short bus conversions. She's an expert!
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Old 08-08-2014, 10:01 AM   #53
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A problem I see with a bus is that the heat gain or loss through the windows will be tremendous. I had to cut some reflectix foil to fit into the few windows of my RV to block the heat gain/loss, as they are not dual-pane. The difference is noticeable.
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Old 08-08-2014, 10:37 AM   #54
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A problem I see with a bus is that the heat gain or loss through the windows will be tremendous. I had to cut some reflectix foil to fit into the few windows of my RV to block the heat gain/loss, as they are not dual-pane. The difference is noticeable.
And every one of those windows rattles in their tracks as you go down the road, it is not a quiet ride. My parents bought a bus that had been converted into a motorhome and we used it to tour a lot of the US. It was fun, but not trouble-free. And it was noisy. Maybe it would be possible to seal most of the windows shut to reduce the noise and heat loss/gain due to air movement around the panes.
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Old 08-08-2014, 10:48 AM   #55
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You know you can remove some of the windows and close the opening up, especially if t you are going to repaint the outside.
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Old 08-08-2014, 10:53 AM   #56
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A bus conversion is a LOT of work! I know I would not be able to finish it to the point of being able to talk my wife to travel in it.

Buying a nice and clean used motorhome, jumping on, and driving off is more to my liking. There will still be plenty of work to maintain it, so it's not like you will be running out of things to do.
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Old 08-08-2014, 10:57 AM   #57
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You know you can remove some of the windows and close the opening up, especially if t you are going to repaint the outside.
Yes, it can be done. But the glass is already there, weatherproof, immune to UV, etc. Replacing 30-40 windows is going to be a lot of cutting, fitting, drilling, sealing, etc. And some expense, too. I'd probably caulk them in place, paint the inside of ones that would be covered by cabinets, etc, then insulate (consider fire-rated spray insulation for good R-value and noise suppression)
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Old 08-08-2014, 12:53 PM   #58
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I found this this morning was thinking of this post so I thought of sharing. Converting a school Bus!!!! Check out what this amazing family did. And its inexpensive.

Simply b Photos » The Big Blue Bus Tour

Enjoy!
I scanned through this Web site. They did not go far enough with the conversion, to add at least a toilet and shower, and in fact have no running water even for the kitchen. This has been done by other people who convert buses and cargo trailers using RV components.
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Old 08-08-2014, 01:11 PM   #59
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Gosh - Getting a bus is easy! If we did this I would go with a small one.

Bus Sales New Used, School Buses Commercial Church Bus Airport Shuttles Limo Buses Wheelchair Vans all on Sale!
Good old school buses are indeed surprisingly cheap! And they should last a lot longer than the commercial RVs made with fiberglass. Oh, only if I were younger and had more energy. I can see how it could be a fun project.
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Old 08-08-2014, 02:33 PM   #60
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Good old school buses are indeed surprisingly cheap! And they should last a lot longer than the commercial RVs made with fiberglass. Oh, only if I were younger and had more energy. I can see how it could be a fun project.
Old school buses never die, they just go to Central America where they provide inter village transportation.
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