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Old 01-05-2016, 02:32 AM   #1
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Question few (ok 13) questions about 21’ Escape (2017) build sheet

Hi all

We own a 17’ Casita, but will be ordering a 21’ Escape as soon as we can.

I have read many of the threads here, and have emailed a few times with Escape…. but I still have a few questions……

one) I am probably going to spend the $200 so the water heater can be both LP and 120v. Reasons are: backup if the gas won’t light….. (if we have 120v) and when 120v is an option I am ok with leaving the heater on unattended if it is 120v (but not gas)
Question: other than $200, are there any DOWNSIDES to having it be LP and 120v?

two) tempted to get the ($160) low pressure gas connection option… however most grilles need high pressure. Anyone recommend a small, folding (stow under the permanent bed) gas grill that has a removable regulator so it would run on a low pressure LP line?

three) do most people get the WARM LED lights (as opposed to the cool white) I am strongly leaning towards the WARM…. as the cool is just so cold looking.

four) other than $200, any downsides for the optional opening bathroom window? We use the Casitas a LOT as it allows fresh air coming in, even if it rains…. no worries if it is open and it rains at night.

five) Can anyone convince me to spend $60 to get the foot flush option on the toilet? I checked out an Escape with the stock side flush handle and i thought it was just fine.

six) Anyone have the $400 Back Up camera option? The Tadi Brothers Back-Up Camera.
My wife wants it to look out for tailgaters, when driving (we have found that a couple little taps on the brakes makes a tailgater back off REAL fast)
and i want it for a little help backing up. (I always do a walk around, plus my wife spots, but a back up camera would make it easier for me to SEE my wife and understand what to do.... she is very soft spoken and often doesn't yell instructions loudly enough)
People happy with it?

seven) The Casita is nice with it’s “fur” on the interior walls … it NEVER condensates.
I am very tempted to get the extra insulation option (unsure of cost) but NOT the thicker (heavy) windows….
as we do boon-dock in a wide variety of temperatures. I really dont want condensation. Thoughts?
The extra insulation would make the interior slightly quieter, slightly less susceptible to outside sound, and less chance of condensation. (physics are physics)

eight) I prefer to NOT tow while the fridge is using LP. (I know the debate, no need to debate this issue here, thanks) :-)
We will tow it with a big SUV. (again… I have done the research…. it is all good…. no need to debate our tug here)

It is my understanding that if we have the solar panel on the roof option, ($850) Plus the dual 6v batteries ($275) then the 21’ fridge could be run on 12v while under tow, correct?

The roof solar option + dual 6v batteries would mean that we’d never have to bring our generator, as far as I see it. Correct? (Fridge and furnace can both run on LP, AFAIK)

nine) What are people using to supply Escape (during the build) with to upgrade the holding tank sensors? I know an old favorite of sensor has been discontinued, and is very hard to find to buy……
What do people think of Horst Miracle Probes?
Order Horst Miracle Probes - Buy Horst Miracle Probes here

ten) We do NOT like the U dinette option… there are only 3 of us camping. We prefer the stock dinette.

My notes from a few months ago tell me ”….(get the) hinged dinette table option ; as the dinnette would often be left as a bed… so not having to store the loose pedestals and not having the bases that are attached to the floor”
Not sure how that would differ from the stock 21’ dinette…. and what the cost is… and how that would work….. or if it is even a real option for me, with a 21’ (?)

eleven) At night we tend to use headlamps. Do I want to get an optional outside light over the front storage box?

Would be be useful to keep idiots from hitting our Escape, when we are unhooked and not there? (leave it on while we are gone, at night)

twelve) Does an electric bathroom vent come as stock?

thirteen) The wife wants the $150 “Storage Cubby Cabinet Bins for Outside Bathroom Door” for toiletries. Any downside?

Thanks!
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Old 01-05-2016, 02:54 AM   #2
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As for the water heater, I have gas only. I turn it on for about 20 minutes or so for hot water in the morning and shut it off. Stays hot for hours. After supper, I'll turn it on for 20 minutes to do dishes. If I'm planning to take a shower, turn it on for 20 minutes. There is no need to leave it on all day. If you mostly camp with hook-ups, you will save on propane by running on electric.

Rear view camera. What is your wife going to do if she spots a tailgater? Get really tense? For backing, I recommend getting out of the vehicle and doing a walk around, looking for obstructions and using a spotter. You should have a discussion with your spotter to determine what signal means what. I'm still working on that one.

As for LEDs, I have cool white over the kitchen counter and warm white everywhere else.
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Old 01-05-2016, 03:06 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gbaglo View Post
... Rear view camera. What is your wife going to do if she spots a tailgater? Get really tense? For backing, I recommend getting out of the vehicle and doing a walk around, looking for obstructions and using a spotter. You should have a discussion with your spotter to determine what signal means what. I'm still working on that one.....
Good points... I edited my original post to clarify.

thanks.
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Old 01-05-2016, 05:36 AM   #4
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Los,
We have a 21 with many of the options you discuss.
As you are considering these options, go ahead and do the US/CAN dollar conversion. It makes buying options so much easier to accept when you see the prices in USD.

1) We have the dual water heater. Some have said we will never make back the additional price by the propane we'll save. Probably true, but I just like using electricity that I've paid for at those sites. Only downside is the switch to turn on the electric on mine is accessed from outside, while the propane is inside.
2) Don't have the gas external gas connection, but don't feel that I've missed it, yet.
3)For me warm LEDs mean acceptable LEDs, cool means not acceptable.
4)Have the bath window--no debate here, and think of it as $120 or whatever.
5)We have the hand flush, and it's been fine.
6)I have that brand of back-up camera for hitching up, since the tow vehicle we've used thus far has not had one. New tow does have its own camera, so I might try using the currently unattached camera on the back of the trailer soon. It's pretty much a fish eye/wide angle, so not sure how useful it will be except for close work like hitching.
7) We have the thermal windows and extra insulation. We have to keep windows slightly open to avoid condensation in cold weather. When people ask how does ours compare to one without, there's no way for us to know. Unless someone has had one of each in exactly the same weather and number of people in the trailer, there'd be just guessing involved. If I ordered another one, I'd get all the insulation and thermal windows I could get.
8)We have towed using solar and the twin 6s. It works fairly well. We monitor fridge temps remotely from the tow vehicle. If fridge temps creep up, we switch to propane. My research is that propane or 120v provides more cooling than 12v, and my experience seems to verify this. We have the "newer" two door dometic. Another concern--if we are going to be without power, I switch to propane in the early afternoon, to let the solar top up the batteries before camping. Solar will "fill" the batteries each day thereafter, even in partial shade, so long as you don't use the fridge on 12v while boondocking. To me this is a fun exercise, others couldn't be bothered.
9)Better sensors would be nice. We have to constantly discuss the fact that one light (one third) means between 10 gallons and 19 gallons. Two lights could be 20 to 29 gallons, etc.
10) We have the standard dinette and like it. Am considering the single pedestal with four-way slide, if we use the bed more. It's a pain to lower and then reinstall the big table, but I like the big table.
11)Got one additional exterior light on the driver side, and never use it. Probably wouldn't get the front one. We try not to arrive after dark, and my thinking was that is was better not to have the whole on the windy side.
12) Pretty sure the bath power vent is standard. If not, get one.
13) My wife loves the cubbies, especially for $100 USD.

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Old 01-05-2016, 07:49 AM   #5
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Probably would have been better off breaking this up some, tough to answer them all.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Losangeles View Post

one) You can modify the outside electric switch so it is inside, do a search to find more info on it.

two) I have the external gas line but only use it for the fire ring, others have modified their stove, maybe they'll drop a note on it.

three) Not an option when I got mine.

four) other than $200, any downsides for the optional opening bathroom window? Nope

five) Can anyone convince me to spend $60 to get the foot flush option on the toilet? I checked out an Escape with the stock side flush handle and i thought it was just fine. Nope, personal choice. Many threads on it here

seven)
I really dont want condensation. Thoughts? Then get both and dang the extra weight.

eight) It is my understanding that if we have the solar panel on the roof option, ($850) Plus the dual 6v batteries ($275) then the 21’ fridge could be run on 12v while under tow, correct?
While I don't know your tow, with mine, running on battery without dropping battery charge would mean I have to have a sunny day and only travel when the sun is high in the sky. When I've done 8 hours or so on the road on a sunny summer day leaving around 7am, I'm down about 20 amps by the time I pull off the road. Output of the panel is down around 1 amp real early in the morning. I run on LP on cloudy days, battery on sunny. Whether or not I'll have hookups at the end of the day comes into play too.

The roof solar option + dual 6v batteries would mean that we’d never have to bring our generator, as far as I see it. Correct? (Fridge and furnace can both run on LP, AFAIK) I have not needed to bring mine, about 4 months camping in the fall. If I were doing some cold weather boondocking with the sun lower in the sky, I probably would take it.

nine) What are people using to supply Escape (during the build) with to upgrade the holding tank sensors?
Horst is what I would use, I forgot to do so and am sorry I did. Most don't care.

eleven) At night we tend to use headlamps. Do I want to get an optional outside light over the front storage box?

Would be be useful to keep idiots from hitting our Escape, when we are unhooked and not there? (leave it on while we are gone, at night)

No offense but this sounds a bit silly to me, but to each their own.

twelve) Does an electric bathroom vent come as stock? Yes

Thanks!
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Old 01-05-2016, 07:58 AM   #6
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1. Dual is an option I had, and will get again. 120V is quieter, and does not use your propane up either.

2. I love the quick convenience of having the low pressure quick connect. Will definitely be getting one or two of them again.

3. Cool for task areas, warm for entertaining/eating areas is my preference.

4. I am likely going to get the opening window for the same reasons.

5. I fail to see the advantage of the foot flush, and we are used to the regular flush, so will likely go that way.

6. For myself, I would not consider this option. I do not agree with most of the reasons often touted for using one. I would NEVER rely on it for use driving, and having reversed a trailer thousands of times successfully without one, see no good purpose there. Anyone helping you reverse should be in direct line of site of the drivers side mirror, if at all possible. Hand signals should be used, not voice ones.

7. As mentioned before, if I only got one option on my trailer, it would likely be the extra insulation and dual glazed windows. Quieter, warmer/cooler, less condensation.

8. Pretty much propane only for the fridge when towing, though never had solar before, and will on the 5.0. Dual 6V I did have, and loved it. In my opinion, there is really no need for a genset if you have the solar.

9. Horst probes are commonly used, and I bought some a few months back when on sale. However, I really had no problems before with the stock ones.

10. There are lots of appealing options to not having the U-shaped dinette. Mostly for the nice large size. I am swaying over to the U-shaped one though. If you were to use it as a bed often, a solution easier to use than the stock two pedestals would be preferred.

11. This would be totally up to you. We always have headlamps, and they certainly would do the trick. Much more task oriented too. But, the light is not that expensive, and might be nice those times when your headlamp is not handy. I really, really dislike when people leave lights blaring on the outside of the trailer when they are not using them.

12. I believe it does now.

13. I have not used these cubby holes, so really don't know, but I would keep all toiletries in the bath or a closed cabinet somewhere anyway. The cubbies would certainly be handy for other things though.
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Old 01-05-2016, 08:50 AM   #7
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We travel with three people and have the need to lower and raise the table each day of travel. On our 19 we had the traditional two pedestal table and it was a killer. It was one reason for the upgrade to the 21 with the hinged table. Ease of use is dramatic with the hinge but there are some drawbacks. First the table looses the ability to slide, not a big deal unless the size of the person sitting down dictates more room. Second the table is a bit shorter. This differential reduces the surface area for eating and makes the bed smaller when lowered. For this reason, Escape provides a filler board that puts the bed back to full size. We do not even carry the filler board as with a single person on the bed/table there is more than enough space.

The cubbies are an excellent place to organize small items, more important when there are three people travelling. They also keep things off the counter space above the drawers.

With an electric bathroom fan standard I fail to see the value of an opening window.

The insulation only makes sense if you are in climate extremes and the trailer is still very functional without insulation in those extremes.

The best way to get the lighting you want is to install your own LED lights. My factory installed are a bit on the bright side. My 19 was purchased before LED's were an option and I installed LED's from SuperBrightLEDs. I ordered a couple of samples to test the K value before doing all. This gives you the option to use different brightness in different areas and the install is minutes. If you select the Escape LED package I do not believe the outside lights are LED, still incandescent.
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Old 01-05-2016, 09:16 AM   #8
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We do not have the rear view camera and don't miss it. I actually like not knowing about the tailgaters behind me. As for backing into a site, we bought walkie talkies for $25 and they work great. We walk the site together then back in using the radios. No shouting and no confusion on signals. Directions are always "driver side" and "passenger side" instead of left/right because that can get really confusing based upon ones orientation.
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Old 01-05-2016, 09:18 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fudge_brownie View Post
First the table looses the ability to slide..... Second the table is a bit shorter.
This can be remedied with the right hardware.

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Old 01-05-2016, 09:38 AM   #10
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My Build Sheet is complete, but I found this discussion very interesting and informative. Thanks to all for your thorough explanations.
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