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Old 04-26-2011, 01:33 PM   #41
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Anyone ever converted a cargo trailer into a camping trailer? We were thinking it might be a cheaper way to get started. DH doesn't like having a bathroom or kitchen in it (too much to maintain, etc.). He thinks all the ones we've looked at and his parent's ones (they had 3) were filmsy, expensive and prone to things breaking in it that were expensive to fix.

We have seen some CT conversions on a couple of websites but never one in person.
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Old 04-26-2011, 01:37 PM   #42
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Anyone ever converted a cargo trailer into a camping trailer? We were thinking it might be a cheaper way to get started. DH doesn't like having a bathroom or kitchen in it (too much to maintain, etc.).
What's to convert? Without a kitchen or bathroom all you need to do is throw in a couple of cots, folding chairs and a battery powered lantern - instant RV.
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Old 04-26-2011, 03:15 PM   #43
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What's to convert? Without a kitchen or bathroom all you need to do is throw in a couple of cots, folding chairs and a battery powered lantern - instant RV.
I think you can still even rent one from U Haul.
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Old 04-27-2011, 09:29 AM   #44
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What do a tornado and a divorce in West Virginia have in common?

Someone is going to lose a trailer.
If you just helped your rich uncle take the wheels of his new home, you might be a redneck...
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Old 04-29-2011, 10:37 AM   #45
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+1 on the trailer notes above. This is our first year owning a camper. Last year I purchased a used Aliner, hard sided popup, for $750. I spent the autumn making it nice and adding an enclosed toilet and updated power system. I added a hitch to my new Outback and am ready to roll with my suitcase on wheels within 15 min.

I like the fact that I am using an regular car to do this it keeps everything very flexible and simple. A friend of mine became a full timer a few years ago and he told me that if he could re-do anything he would have not spent the $ on a bus type RV but rather a fifth wheel with a new truck. This save $ as the truck would be his vehicle when the RV is parked.

Have fun!
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Old 04-30-2011, 11:28 AM   #46
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This save $ as the truck would be his vehicle when the RV is parked.
As long as you don't mind driving everywhere in a heavy duty truck. We put about 3x as many miles on our tow vehicle as we do our RV. I'm not sure how much I'd save by driving those miles in a more expensive, less fuel efficient, vehicle.
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Old 05-08-2011, 11:16 AM   #47
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One tip for the on-road part: drive 5 mph UNDER the speed limit, and let everyone pass you - it makes you MUCH safer!
This makes a lot of sense. It takes a lot longer to stop when pulling a trailer. If you're RVing, you shouldn't be in a hurry anyway.
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Old 05-08-2011, 11:26 AM   #48
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One tip for the on-road part: drive 5 mph UNDER the speed limit, and let everyone pass you - it makes you MUCH safer!
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This makes a lot of sense. It takes a lot longer to stop when pulling a trailer. If you're RVing, you shouldn't be in a hurry anyway.
I agree but I'd suggest you drive more than 5MPH under the speed limit in many situations. I find driving around 60-62MPH to be a comfortable speed so I rarely exceed that even when the speed limit is 70 or 80. Driving faster than 60-62 is not only a bit less safe and more stressful, fuel economy goes downhill in a hurry.
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Old 05-08-2011, 11:37 AM   #49
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As long as you don't mind driving everywhere in a heavy duty truck. We put about 3x as many miles on our tow vehicle as we do our RV. I'm not sure how much I'd save by driving those miles in a more expensive, less fuel efficient, vehicle.
There are trade offs no matter which option you take - neither choice is right for everyone.
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Old 05-08-2011, 12:08 PM   #50
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60 mph is my motorhome's sweet spot, more or less. BTW it is also quietest in that range.

I pick it up a notch for safety in some cases (aggressive high speed traffic where my 60mph seems to invite reckless passing, etc).

We also agreed on aiming for no more othan 300-350 miles per day to avoid "get-there-itis."
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Old 05-08-2011, 01:21 PM   #51
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We also agreed on aiming for no more othan 300-350 miles per day to avoid "get-there-itis."
5 hrs, with a break for lunch, is about as much driving as I want to do on any given day. If where I'm going looks to be more than that, I can usually find an interesting enough stop between here and there to spend a couple of days.
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Old 05-08-2011, 02:19 PM   #52
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We have a Lance camper 1025 (10 foot slide in camper) on a ford '97 F350 crew cab. 9 mpg + burns premium, but fits anywhere and its a 4x4. If you are planning to spend weeks or months in something, this would be too small, but we (well,... mostly me) love it. I suppose, in a pinch, we could enter it in the next RV racing derby...
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Old 05-08-2011, 03:07 PM   #53
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If you are planning to spend weeks or months in something, this would be too small
Nah, sounds like Rocinante (the RV that Steinbeck drove in Travels with Charley).
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Old 05-08-2011, 06:29 PM   #54
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I've had both a class C motor home and also pulled a 35 ft Avion travel trailer on different occassions. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. I think driving a class C may be a little more easy on the nerves unless you are also pulling a tow vehicle. I never did that. Just used mopeds back in my day. In that regard, pulling the Avion with the 3/4 ton Chevy Suburban was a breeze. Triple axle. 70 mph no problem. 10mpg, whether or not you're pulling anything. Things have improved a lot over the years to make it easier to set up camp like auto leveling jacks. I'm 6'3" and head clearance is very important. Walked right through the Avion with no problem. It was bigger than the class C Tioga but it's all relavant to needs. Avion had two twin beds in the rear and the Tioga bed was above the cab. Today at 75, I'll take a motel.
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Old 05-08-2011, 06:58 PM   #55
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The 4 of us and the two dogs were camping this weekend in our 16 foot travel trailer. People looked at us like we were clowns getting in and out of the little car.
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Old 05-08-2011, 07:26 PM   #56
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I agree but I'd suggest you drive more than 5MPH under the speed limit in many situations. I find driving around 60-62MPH to be a comfortable speed so I rarely exceed that even when the speed limit is 70 or 80. Driving faster than 60-62 is not only a bit less safe and more stressful, fuel economy goes downhill in a hurry.
Not to mention that your big rig tires are often rated for 65mph or less and how much harder it is to handle a blowout going 70+.

I almost never go above 60 unless flat and wind at my back. Sure helps on the fuel mileage.

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Old 05-08-2011, 07:30 PM   #57
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60 mph is my motorhome's sweet spot, more or less. BTW it is also quietest in that range.

I pick it up a notch for safety in some cases (aggressive high speed traffic where my 60mph seems to invite reckless passing, etc).

We also agreed on aiming for no more othan 300-350 miles per day to avoid "get-there-itis."
Same here! 350 in one day is a full day for us.

Unless we are heading west of San Antonio on I-10 that is! If you don't go at least 400 miles you feel like you made no progress at all! I mean - 550 miles from SA to El Paso? Good grief! Fortunately that I-40 section is so well designed (gradual rises) and low traffic it's not a burden at all, once you get used to all the folks blasting past you at 80mph!

Audrey
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Old 05-08-2011, 07:35 PM   #58
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Fortunately that I-10 section is so well designed (gradual rises) and low traffic it's not a burden at all, once you get used to all the folks blasting past you at 80mph!

Audrey
Yep. I'm always amazed to see the State Troopers pull someone over for speeding on that stretch of raceway highway!
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Old 05-09-2011, 01:12 AM   #59
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Not to mention that your big rig tires are often rated for 65mph...
The lowest tire speed rating is 75mph and that's very rare. Common truck tires are rated at 93mph or above.

Tire Tech Information - How to Read Speed Rating, Load Index & Service Descriptions

That said, I agree that RVs should be driven at 60mph or less when possible for safety and economic reasons.
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Old 07-03-2011, 12:09 PM   #60
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I've tried opening up the possibility of buying another trailer instead of a motor home with my husband. He wants a motor home.

I thought 29 feet would provide the floor plan we want but would still be easy to drive because it is small, in fact we found a nice one locally that we were enthusiastic about. Then a motor home owner on a Yahoo website told me to pay attention to the wheel base vs length. I got a cross examination from husband about that so I went to the library and reviewed a couple books... what an eye opener. The higher the ratio the better the motor home drives. 29 vs 30 feet is the breaking point on wheelbases. A 30' drives better than a 29'!

As a result I signed up for rv.org which rates motor homes. Now I know what to look for, or to say it differently... what to avoid in a used motor home.

The hunt continues....
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