LTRVD0402 New RV Technology and Fun Factory Tours

New RV Technology and Fun Factory Tours

This show is about New RV Technology and Fun Factory Tours. John covers information that comes out of the 2017 RVIA show about some new technology that Freightliner is making available on their Diesel chassis offerings. Kathy discusses some interesting and fun factory tours around the US.

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New RV Technology

Freightliner Custom Chassis Corp. has introduced a package of automotive style technology features that are direct from the automobile industry. The “Road Watch” combines several safety features in one package. It includes Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Roll Stability Control (RSC), Collision mitigation with forward warning and braking, adaptive cruise control (ACC), and automatic traction control (ATC). Some of this technology is being introduced in the Spartan K2 chassis from Spartan Motors as well as the Freightliner offerings.

S2RV Chassis

Freightliner is also now offering the commercial S2 truck chassis as a customized RV chassis called the S2RV. It offers a Cummins ISB diesel engine with 360 horse power and 800 foot pounds of torque. It also has an Allison 3000 automatic transmission and a host of other RV specific features. These include a front and rear air ride chassis, 100-gallon fuel tank, air suspension driver and passenger seats, and Sachs tunes shocks. The S2RV has a GVWR of 29,000 pounds. Owner friendly features include a 3 year, 50,000-mile warranty with towing and roadside assistance and 24/7 factory direct customer support.

Smart Key Fob

How about a smart Key Fob? Another Freightliner innovation has 4 buttons that lock and unlock doors and basement compartments, turn on and off exterior and interior lights and deploys and stows the electric awning.

Fun Factory Tours

Kathy talks about some interesting and fun factory tours from such companies as Airstream in Jackson Center, OH; Woolrich in Woolrich, PA; Coors Brewing Company in Golden, CO; Golden Flame potato chips, Birmingham, AL; Chevrolet Corvette, Bowling Green, KY; Harley Davidson in York, PA; Fender Guitars in Corona, CA; Tabasco Pepper Sauce in Avery Island, LA; Nokona Baseball Gloves in Nokona, TX, and my favorite, Jelly Belly in Fairfield, CA.

LTRVD0401 RVing Arizona

RVing Arizona

RVing Arizona is the working title of our new book I hope to have out by June or July of this year. It will be all about the places RVers go in Arizona to camp and to see and experience. We will also include some of our favorite eating places we have enjoyed during our many visits to Arizona.

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The mail bag

We answer questions about how to get the most from an RV show. John answers a query about using RV furnaces for heating the basement compartments. I try to help a lady who wants to get rid of her troublesome Norcold RV refrigerator and replace it with a household unit. Where do we get service work done on the road away from home? I discuss what shops we use.

Wilcox, AZ

Kathy and I talk about some of our favorite things to see in the Wilcox area. This is the first town of interest on I-10 coming into Arizona from New Mexico. In town are 3 very nice museums. They are the Rex Allen Arizona Cowboy Museum, The Friends of Marty Robbins Museum, and the Chiracahua Regional Museum. These are excellent venues. Just to the west of town is Cochise Lake where sand hill cranes gather by the thousands during their migration to South America. Outside of town to the southeast is the Fort Bowir National Historic Site. Our favorite place in the area is the very beautiful and interesting Chiracahua National Monument.


Southwest of Wilcox is the reconstructed town of Tombstone, the town “Too tough to die.” We discuss some of our observations there during several trips. Our favorite time there is during “Helldorado Days”. Helldorado Days is a festival that began in Tombstone in 1929 and is held every year in October. Helldorado is held every third weekend in October and consists of gunfight re-enactment shows, street entertainment, fashion shows and a family oriented carnival. In addition, come and watch the Annual Helldorado Parade on Sunday at 11am.


We spent a Fall and Winter workamping at a very nice RV park in Benson. It is the Butterfield RV Resort and Observatory. A discussion follows with a little bit about it as well as the observatory shows we saw there. Karchner Caverns State Park, Gammons Gulch, and Fort Huachuca are also discussed.

LTRVD0400 Interviews With RV People

Interviews With RV People

These are some of our interviews with RV People that we have done in the last several years. We try to pick subjects for our interviews that will educate the RVing public.
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Mark and Dawn Polk

Mark and Dawn Polk have developed a niche within the RV industry by training RVers about their RVs. We interviewed Mark at the 2013 Hershey Show. They have produced consumer videos, books and product videos for both RVers as well as RV suppliers. As RV Education 101, they offer 20 DVDs on subjects such as driving a motorhome, setting up at a campground or towing a trailer. These DVD’s are sold as singles or in sets.

Mark has also written ”The RV Book,” which takes the video subject matter and puts it in written form. It’s sold thousands of hard copies and is also available as an e-book through their website .

Gary Bunzer – The RV Doctor

Gary Bunzer is a Master Certified RV Technician who presents some of the best and most informative RV seminars in the industry. We met and interviewed Gary at the Hershey RV show in 2013, and I respect him as a subject matter expert on almost all aspects of RV maintenance as well as a complete gentleman. I believe that’s why he is called “The RV Doctor.” He has a very informative website at:

Harvest Hosts

Harvest Hosts LLC is the culmination of years of travel by Kim and Don Greene. We interviewed Kim and Don at the Escapees Escapade in 2016. They have visited over 80 countries together during the last 25 years and have logged over 200,000 miles in various RVs over the past decade. Their wonderful experiences allowed them to meet members of the RVing community around the world, and on their journeys across Europe, they discovered networks such as France Passion that allow motorhomes to park overnight at wineries and farms for free.

Their desire to bring this concept to North America has received widespread support from both the agri-tourism and RVing communities and theye are very pleased to offer you the fun opportunities of Harvest Hosts.

LTRVD0399 Holiday RVer Blues

Holiday RVer Blues

We discuss the all too prevalent Holiday RVer Blues that seem to descend on some full-time RVers at this time of year. The fact is that we miss our family at these special times of the year when we are traveling. We discuss some ways to overcome those “blues.”

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LTRVD0397 Cold Weather RVing

Cold Weather RVing

Today’s show is all about Cold Weather RVing. More and more RVers want to extend their RV season to include some cold Weather RVing. Some are into skiing, some Ice Fishing, and others are into snowmobiling. Preventing fresh water lines and holding tanks from freezing, conservation of propane, and proper insulation are all important parts of the cold weather experience.

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Preparing the Fresh Water System for Cold Weather Use

You must prepare your RV for winter RVing. If you will be in a campground with a working(and hopefully heated) shower house, you might winterize the water system and not use it at all. I’m not sure I would like to get up and go to the shower house in the middle of the night to use the bathroom. Assuming you will use all the facilities of your rig, we will start with the fresh water system.
A heated water hose to connect to the park water system is essential. You will plug in your heated hose to the regular hose bib. You can insulate the exposed part of the hose bib with bubble wrap wrapped over with duct tape. If you can’t afford a heated hose, you can purchase a length of electric heat tape. Lay the heat tape out along the length of the hose. Secure it at 1 foot intervals with electrical tape. Then cover the hose and heat tape with foam pipe insulation. Secure it with duct tape. It is a good practice to place a drop light with a 50 watt bulb in the wet bay where the water hose is connected. This will keep the bay with all its water plumbing warm and frost free.
If your rig has heating pads installed on the bottom of the fresh water tank and the gray and black water holding tanks, you are good to go! If not, you must run your propane furnace(s) occasionally to keep them from freezing. The other alternative is to buy after market heating pads made for RV holding tank use. They come in 120 volt AC and 13.5 volts DC. Check out the offerings from UltraHeat, Inc. at

Insulating Your RV For Winter Camping

Windows and doors are a constant source of air leakage. If your rig has dual pane windows, great! Just remember that the windshield on motorized units is not dual pane nor is the window in the entrance door on side door models. The windshield can be covered with pleated foil available under the Reflectix brand name and available in hardware stores and RV supply shops. Cut it to fit and tape it in place, then pull the curtain closed to add another barrier. An excellent way to insulate single pane windows is with plastic storm window kits also available at hardware stores. This lets you see out of the windows.
Wind is a big reason RV’s get cold in winter. They are up on wheels so the wind blows right under. This is the reason bridge roadways freeze up first. The cure for this is skirting for motorized and towable RV’s. Custom skirts can be purchased made of a vinyl material with snaps. They must be held to the ground with rocks or other weights. You can make your own skirting quite inexpensively with plywood held in place with stakes. Make sure to put skirting all the way around all four sides. Some folks will be tempted to use hay bales. This has several drawbacks. It is an extreme fire hazard around propane fired appliances. Secondly, it will attract mice and other rodents. There has been much material written on protection from mice and other critters. Some folks use moth balls, some essential oils, some commercial dryer sheets. Use whatever works for you, because mice want to be warm too.


Now that you have your rig well buttoned up and as air tight as you can, you need to consider condensation. It will form especially on windows, but also on ceilings as well. It’s part of the price you pay for being warmer than the outside air. A wonderful product called Damp-Rid can help quite a bit as well as providing some small amount of outside ventilation. A dehumidifier can be helpful as well, but must be emptied constantly.

Snow is not Your Friend

You have probably heard that snow is a good insulator, and it is, for igloos. For winter RVing, the snow will melt and refreeze as ice next to the roof or walls of your RV. Show on the roof will quickly exceed the rated roof weight load and should be brushed off after the storm stops. It is especially important to remove it from slide tops and slide top awnings. It’s OK to have it lap up against the skirting, as it will help to insulate that.