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Old 02-14-2017, 11:36 AM   #1
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Learned Stuff, Quartzsite

Back home now. Our second rally held at the Dome Rock BLM just outside Quartzsite, Arizona was a repeat of the usual good camping fun and games when birds of a feather flock together.

The week was particularly beneficial for me because I got to solve a few trailer problems and confirm a few brilliant adjustments. First and most important was the Dometic fridge issue. The thing stopped cooling on propane sometime during the 2 day drive to the rally. (What’s new, eh? Always bring an old fashioned cooler for back-up.) Next, the wonderful mattress was biting us at night. It was a breeze to set up and take down my new television antenna, made with telescoping PVC pipe. Too bad the channel scan found zero channels.

Since there’s no water or electricity at a BLM a 6-day stay stresses out those needs. Our 100 watt portable solar panels handled things easily. In town the Pilot or TA truck stops have water spigots out back, free. Had my 3 each 2½ gallon jugs. But is it potable? Have no idea.

Unless you plan on eating every meal in town it is wise to bring all your food with you. The nearest WalMart is 40 miles away and a half-gallon of ice cream at the pathetic little food market in town will cost you almost the same as a 6-pack, seven bucks. The Bad Boys Café, and Sweet Darlene’s, are very good but when they are busy do not, repeat do not, have supper, at the Grubstake.

By far my wisest move was bringing along her crate and buying a metal leash, for Josie. That did not stop her from trying to chew off the valve handle to the black water tank, and one shoe lace, and one pair of readers. The Gambler RV Supply has dusty RV junk on its shelves but could not match my older model 2-burner stove top knob. If you look you can get a good buy on plastic rugs and socks and a box wrench at the flea market.
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File Type: jpg Quartz2.028.jpg (138.2 KB, 119 views)
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Old 02-14-2017, 11:38 AM   #2
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The RM8551 fridge died again

Three days before departure I turn it on and ran it off propane. It was working beautifully, 29°F at 5 dots. When we got to Quartzsite it was 55°F at 5 dots.
Now comes the beauty part of a rally. At your service, a gathering of the best and the brightest trailer trouble shooting minds on the planet are there. Thanks to Doug, and Ron, for your expertise. I had ignition and a small flame. It just wasn’t enough. The fridge failure narrowed down to being an issue involving either the regulator at the tanks, or to within the lines to the Piezo ignition. Not enough propane was getting through. Some have upgraded their regulator to a better one.

Ron had this problem and solved it by removing the nozzle at the Piezo and carefully cleaning it out. This was a tad tricky because you can easily kink the line, and there’s an extra, nearly hidden screw, and the bloody fixture was very stubbornly frozen, and you don’t want to ream the orifice. Using a thin wire was deemed inadvisable. Ron had some magical Mexican WD-40 that freed up the frozen part, and we used a can of compressed air to blow out the clogged nozzle.

Problem solved! Short answer: all propane tanks contain impurities that can clog you up. It isn’t always dust or spider webs in the flue.
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Old 02-14-2017, 11:51 AM   #3
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Ron and the Traveling Tool Shop are handy to have around, eh? Glad to hear he fixed your fridge for you.

Good tips for those of us yet to make it there.

Great photos too.
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Old 02-14-2017, 12:20 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by MyronL View Post
The RM8551 fridge died again

Three days before departure I turn it on and ran it off propane. It was working beautifully, 29°F at 5 dots. When we got to Quartzsite it was 55°F at 5 dots.
Now comes the beauty part of a rally. At your service, a gathering of the best and the brightest trailer trouble shooting minds on the planet are there. Thanks to Doug, and Ron, for your expertise. I had ignition and a small flame. It just wasn’t enough. The fridge failure narrowed down to being an issue involving either the regulator at the tanks, or to within the lines to the Piezo ignition. Not enough propane was getting through. Some have upgraded their regulator to a better one.

Ron had this problem and solved it by removing the nozzle at the Piezo and carefully cleaning it out. This was a tad tricky because you can easily kink the line, and there’s an extra, nearly hidden screw, and the bloody fixture was very stubbornly frozen, and you don’t want to ream the orifice. Using a thin wire was deemed inadvisable. Ron had some magical Mexican WD-40 that freed up the frozen part, and we used a can of compressed air to blow out the clogged nozzle.

Problem solved! Short answer: all propane tanks contain impurities that can clog you up. It isn’t always dust or spider webs in the flue.
Myron thanks for a update . Ron is surely is my go to guy for solving issues . I did change out our regulator and replaced the lines , one I always had trouble sealing , leaking gas since new . Having a can of compressed air is a must ,I think . Who knows maybe it was the air that fixed ours . Hope your refrigerator is fixed now . Hope we can go to next rally would love to meet you and others . Take care . Pat
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Old 02-14-2017, 04:17 PM   #5
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Here's another lesson learned.

I bought a little stick-on thermometer for outside the window because I like knowing the temp outside before I get up. But, its' peel-it-off to expose the stickum failed, so I used Gorilla glue. Used too much. A powerful adhesive. When you use too much it expands and drips. That happened, obscuring the numbers.

So I bought another one, the one pictured here, for the other window. It's twice as big - easier to see. You just wash the window and adhere it flat on, using suction or capillary action or something. No glue. I hedged my bets with some red Duct tape. It snowed last night and this morning the melting snow did this.
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Old 02-14-2017, 06:13 PM   #6
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HI Myron, glad you got your fridge problems behind you. I have had intermittent fridge cooling on propane since last summer, too. It is guaranteed to work perfectly while in your driveway, but I think the fridge knows how far away from home you are. I replaced the propane regulator last year, as I had read from others on the forum, and like you, thought my problems were fixed.

My fridge quit again on propane on our first day of our latest trip. Luckily, we have had electric hookups so far. Instead of cleaning with compressed air, I soaked the orifice and burner assembly in rubbing alcohol for an hour. That seems to have done the job.
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Old 02-14-2017, 11:33 PM   #7
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Glad my Mexican WT-400 did the job at least as well or better than WD-40.

The thing I learned is that Jon will stop at nothing to be able to bake a pie. Driving 80 miles up to Parker and back to get blueberries for his pie. And the best part is that he'll have a real oven in his new 21 next year and has promised to bake 2 pies. Good thing I was first in line for his pie, it went fast.

We're at the Rolling Hills Casino tonight. I have a feeling Winter is going to start sometime tomorrow.

Ron
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Old 02-15-2017, 01:04 AM   #8
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Glad my Mexican WT-400 did the job at least as well or better than WD-40.

The thing I learned is that Jon will stop at nothing to be able to bake a pie. Driving 80 miles up to Parker and back to get blueberries for his pie. And the best part is that he'll have a real oven in his new 21 next year and has promised to bake 2 pies. Good thing I was first in line for his pie, it went fast.

We're at the Rolling Hills Casino tonight. I have a feeling Winter is going to start sometime tomorrow.

Ron
Hi Ron . Yup we are in for rain again Thur-Sat . Stay away, anywhere near the Oroville Dam up near Sacramento . The Dam is having problems . They have had to evacuate. They let people back today but the storms are coming again . Safe travels going home . Pat
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Old 02-15-2017, 10:33 AM   #9
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Sorry that I did not get to meet MyronL and Ron in BC and PatandLinda while here at Quartzsite. Dang!
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Old 02-15-2017, 11:35 AM   #10
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Hi Ron . Yup we are in for rain again Thur-Sat . Stay away, anywhere near the Oroville Dam up near Sacramento . The Dam is having problems . They have had to evacuate. They let people back today but the storms are coming again . Safe travels going home . Pat
Yup, the picnic tables were floating at one state park.

I want to get through siskiyou today before the next storm comes in.

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Old 02-15-2017, 12:37 PM   #11
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Yup, the picnic tables were floating at one state park.

I want to get through siskiyou today before the next storm comes in.

Ron
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Old 02-15-2017, 11:33 PM   #12
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We are heading up into Oregon from the Bay area Saturday. We decided to go the Hwy 101 route and spend the night at the Lucky 7 Casino just north of Crescent City. We are expecting rain, but no snow or ice. (Lucky 7 allows free parking behind the casino.) We will cut back to I-5 at Reedsport or Florence. I thought about taking Hwy 199 to Grants Pass, but read it is not recommended for truckers due to the tight turns.
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Old 02-15-2017, 11:43 PM   #13
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Hwy 199 is a bit curvy on the CA side, but not bad. Great Mexican restaurant in Cave Junction(with the margarita glass on the sign). Loved the swimming in the Illinois River there. Caves are fun too. The campground nearby reminds me of Pfeiffer Big Sur without the people.
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Old 02-16-2017, 01:04 AM   #14
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I thought about taking Hwy 199 to Grants Pass, but read it is not recommended for truckers due to the tight turns.
199 should not be an issue. I pulled a trailer through there 2 summers ago. A truck has a 40 foot trailer, twice as long as yours with a short tractor. The dynamics between the tow and the trailer are completely different pulling a 21' Escape with a vehicle nearly as long. The pivot point is almost in the middle of the overall length.

The tight turns are mainly between Crecent City and Cave Junction but well within the capabilities of your rig. I wouldn't give it a second thought. Just go the speed of the little yellow curve warning signs and you'll be fine. Plus you will be going uphill. It's easier to control ones speed with the throttle going uphill than down. From Cave Junction to Grants Pass its 50+ mph the whole way.
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Old 02-16-2017, 11:31 AM   #15
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Learned Stuff, Quartzsite

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I thought about taking Hwy 199 to Grants Pass, but read it is not recommended for truckers due to the tight turns.

Richardr,

We just took Hwy 199 from Grants Pass to Crescent City a few weeks ago pulling our Escape without an issue.

As always, make sure you check the road conditions first.

Will you be at the Bluebonnet Rally in April?

Safe travels!
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Old 02-16-2017, 01:44 PM   #16
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Hwy 199 is a bit curvy on the CA side, but not bad. Great Mexican restaurant in Cave Junction(with the margarita glass on the sign). Loved the swimming in the Illinois River there. Caves are fun too. The campground nearby reminds me of Pfeiffer Big Sur without the people.
Another fun spot in Cave junction is "Its a Burl Gallery" with lots of Burl furniture and tree houses.
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Old 02-16-2017, 02:44 PM   #17
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Richardr,

We just took Hwy 199 from Grants Pass to Crescent City a few weeks ago pulling our Escape without an issue.

As always, make sure you check the road conditions first.

Will you be at the Bluebonnet Rally in April?

Safe travels!
Thanks for the information on Hwy 199. We won't make Bluebonnet this year. We will be in France visiting our daughter and grandson.
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Old 02-16-2017, 11:12 PM   #18
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Thanks for the information on Hwy 199. We won't make Bluebonnet this year. We will be in France visiting our daughter and grandson.


Safe travels!
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