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RE: Generators for 5er

I changed a 5500LP over to gas. They have diagrams for everything and I just pulled up the diagrams for both the LP and gas models, and ordered everything that was different. It ended up being just the carb and some regulator, I believe, but that was a few years ago. I used a 12V fuel pump off Amazon and an 18gal marine fuel tank. I swapped it back over to LP at some point because I decided I'd rather have the space the gas tank was taking up for batteries.
n0arp 10/15/21 09:36am Fifth-Wheels
RE: 2013 Arctic Fox 990S

I switch tanks at the switch-over valve when one tank runs out. That way I know exactly how much propane I have. Then I just have the empty tank refilled at a convenient time and place. Easy peasy and it doesn't cost a thing. ;) It's annoying to have the heat cut out in the middle of the night in 0F weather. Been there a few times, Mopeka sensors keep that from sneaking up on you. But if you don't camp in cold weather, then there are few downsides to just letting the tanks run out and running them like you do.
n0arp 10/07/21 01:32pm Truck Campers
RE: 2013 Arctic Fox 990S

Thread from last year on this topic: We use the Mopeka sensors in both our rigs and recommend them.
n0arp 10/07/21 09:29am Truck Campers
RE: What did you do to your truck today?

Currently, I have the 225's with 4.44 gearing. My Toyo's are 245's which will make cruising RPM a little less. 65 mph is 2000 rpm in stock trim. I have 4.89s and didn't care for the 225s with them. With the 245s, you'll effectively be around 4.28, which should be really nice.
n0arp 10/05/21 04:04pm Truck Campers
RE: What did you do to your truck today?

I have a tower of Toyo M655's sitting in the garage waiting to be mounted. We are spending some time on the Oregon Coastal Dunes and will try to get this done between trips. 7 by 82 lbs is much easier to move around on a furniture dolly than rolling one at a time. Are you running the OE 225/70R19.5s? What gearing do you have?
n0arp 10/05/21 03:06pm Truck Campers
RE: New Ram 5500 Build

I tossed this Kenwood TM-D710G in box, in a catchall toolbox, a few years ago and over time the cardboard box broke down and the radio came loose. It’s spent the last year or longer being crushed, scratched, spilled on, etc, but cleaned up pretty nicely (with disassembly/reassembly) and passes a bench test. I’ll be mounting it in the cab of the Ram for VHF/UHF and APRS soon. These ruggedized Kenwood radios are great. I never mounted any ham gear in my Ram 3500, but had this as well as several other radios in my Chevy 2500. I'll probably just stick to this and the Midland MXT275 I already have in the 5500. width=640 Unfortunately the antenna and mount I'm going to use aren't available shipped to a Prime locker, and I'm not going to spend $10/pkg at the local The UPS Store to receive packages, so this install will have to wait a while until I can figure out how to get the parts. Note: n0arp is my callsign
n0arp 09/29/21 03:11pm Truck Campers
RE: Who is a Full Timer with a Camper?

My wife and I, and our three dogs, full-time in two rigs, a 39' fifth wheel and an AF1140. We've spent the last ten months straight in the AF1140 with the fifth wheel sitting in storage. We've been part time since 2014 and full time since 2019.
n0arp 09/28/21 09:55am Truck Campers
RE: New Ram 5500 Build

Missed the 'adding front' and full tilt interior console. Got it. Agree, that loaded, the trucks are fine. We're running right at 18k solo. But take the camper off, and it would still be a rough ride without the air, which we often do. Cheers... fun thread to follow. Loaded with camper, we are over the 19.5K gross on the truck but it handles fine and the overloading is minimal compared to how heavy we were on the 3500. Unloaded, we still have enough weight that it’s far better than the day we got it.
n0arp 09/27/21 03:22pm Truck Campers
RE: New Ram 5500 Build

.....I had planned a full Kelderman air ride but there are a lot of things I'd rather spend $10K on right now..... Where are you finding that the suspension is 10k? We're riding Link's system, which have been fantastic.. but Kelderman makes a great unit. Basic should be about 5-7k. Just curious...because there is no comparison in ride. I've had Kelderman on a previous truck w/ their mechanical auto leveling which ran $6-7K and am familiar with it. That worked well for my purposes then, but not for what I'm wanting now. The ride of the current truck doesn't really bother me - I'm interested in the ability to level the truck on unlevel ground to have a level camper, and gaining a couple inches of extra clearance in the rear. A few thousand pounds of flatbed and tools smoothes things greatly. I may eventually get the Kelderman setup, but that'll be down the road because right now I'd rather spend the money earmarked for it on a couple new bikes and some upgrades to our fifth wheel. We'll see how this does first. $10K is for the kit I'd go with, which is front ($1495), rear ($4550), and 3H control system w/ console mount ($4200), plus shipping ($400), for a total of $10645 with a 10-12 week lead time (talked to them last week). I'm aware it could be done cheaper, but I wouldn't be happy with the cheaper options and I'm not really wanting to wait, as I could use the additional clearance now.
n0arp 09/27/21 12:48pm Truck Campers
RE: New Ram 5500 Build

I didn't notice any rubbing, but when checking everything over this week, I found that we made contact with the flatbed crossmembers coming up here: width=640 I was initially going to put a 2" spacer above the bump stop to limit uptravel (circled in red, ignore the missing bolt -- I removed it prior to taking the photo to check size (M10)): width=640 ... but decided to look at other options instead. I had planned a full Kelderman air ride but there are a lot of things I'd rather spend $10K on right now. So I decided to stick with the factory suspension a while and look at helper options. I ruled out Air Lift, Pacbrake, and Hellwig bags because they're all inboard of the frame, and ruled out Timbrens and SumoSprings for the same reason and that the camper is perfectly level on level ground, as they would change that. I ruled out SuperSprings because the current springs are sufficient and they'd increase ride height all of the time. That leaves only Firestone bags, which are outboard of the frame, above the leaf packs. I called up Firestone to get actual measurements of the brackets and everything will clear the flatbed mounts without modification, as well as give me 1" of clearance to the tire when fully deflated. That should let me safely run tire chains if I have sufficient air in the bags as they're narrower when inflated. I ordered the Firestone 2404 kit with Pacbrake HP10327 compressor/ wireless control kit. This set me back around $1K instead of $10K and will give me 3-4" additional clearance when needed above the tires/ under the boxes as well as let me level the rear of the rig from side to side and back to front when at unlevel sites. Unfortunately I'll still have to use front blocks in some situations, but the ride of the truck isn't bothering me enough yet to spend the additional $9K. I've used helper bags on several trucks and despite what most people claim, I've found they reduce stability. I believe that's most likely due to moving your load support inward as almost all of the readily available kits are inboard of the frame, sitting on top of the axle with the upper bracket in place of the bump stop. This kit shouldn't have that issue, so I'm excited to see how it compares.
n0arp 09/27/21 11:38am Truck Campers
RE: New Ram 5500 Build

Plus, we full-time and perform our own maintenance/repairs so the tools are kind of a necessity. Where do you work on your truck/camper? Depends on what it is, but usually I'll set up shop wherever I'm at. I've occasionally used Home Depot/ Autozone/ etc parking lots. I did a lot of the cutting/grinding/welding/flatbed mods in a Home Depot parking lot because I could go in and get additional cutting wheels, flap discs, and other consumables as/ if needed. I parked at the end, out of the way, and nobody bothered me except to ask questions about the rig. I recently changed all the fluids on my old truck (30K major maintenance - oil, fuel filters, trans, tcase, and diff fluids) in a friend's driveway while moochdocking. I've driven onto large tarps on USFS/BLM land to do major maintenance sensitive to dust and/or subject to spills. Done lots of suspension work/upgrades and most recently a pinion seal on the Jeep that way. If there is a potential for a major spill I go to a parking lot, as mentioned above, because I don't want to risk contaminating anything. Sometimes I do use a shop - for instance, I didn't want to regear the Jeep outside in a dirty environment, so I paid for a shop to do it. Plus it's one of those things where it's nice to have someone who does them all day, every day, set it up rather than doing it myself, when I've only done them a couple of times. I've also worked on things at RV parks before, but try to restrict that to things that aren't going to be noisy.
n0arp 09/26/21 05:45pm Truck Campers
RE: New Ram 5500 Build

Cheers, man! Angle grinder? Nothing like a guy who carries an angle grinder, camping, but has the balls and skills to take said grinder and make field “adjustments” on his new 6 figure rig! Love it! Haha, we carry a full assortment of tools including a small welder. Never know when they'll come in handy! We've done quite a bit of trimming on both vehicles (and many past vehicles) with the cutting wheel to eliminate rubbing -- chopping up fenders and bumpers is now second nature! Plus, we full-time and perform our own maintenance/repairs so the tools are kind of a necessity.
n0arp 09/26/21 03:52pm Truck Campers
RE: Generators for 5er

I recommend considering an Onan 5500 onboard generator if you have the space for one. That will power both air units, a residential fridge, and have plenty to spare even at elevation. Our fifth wheel when it was configured with 2x Dometic 15K AC units, a residential fridge, and a lot of miscellaneous electronics would consume 2700W with both AC units running full force and fridge on defrost. We could start both AC units with the Onan no problem, without soft starts. You don't need a 7kW generator. Depending on where you camp (altitude) and whether or not you have soft starts, a single 4500W would likely suffice.
n0arp 09/26/21 03:18pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: New Ram 5500 Build

Can you let me know what the height is from the ground to the camper step/bumper? Great looking set up Thanks. I can take a measurement today, or can wait a bit and take one on level ground. Because of the slope, I don't think anything I take today will be completely accurate. That being said, the deck height hovers around 42", which is more or less straight back to the top of the bumper. So it should be 42" to the top of the bumper, give or take an inch.
n0arp 09/23/21 04:42pm Truck Campers
RE: hydro or electric leveling

I had electric-mechanical jacks on 2 previous 5er and this one and the past two had hydraulic jacks. I'll take the hydraulic system any day of the week. I had problems with the electric-mechanical jacks several times. The Big Foot hydraulic jacks have had only one problem in the 8 years in the current RV. One jack started leaking and had to be replaced which I did myself. The electric jacks had multiple problems of motors burning out, blowing buses and gears breaking. Ken Yep. The idea that electric jacks are a safer bet with less that will go wrong is pure nonsense. People come up with all sorts of ideas that aren't necessarily true to justify their purchases. I've had (have, actually - if you count the electric jacks on the truck camper) both and much, much prefer the hydraulic.
n0arp 09/23/21 04:23pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: New Ram 5500 Build

Seems like you are pushing the limits a lot. Have fun! Grabbed a photo of that rock that came close to hitting the toolbox. The road lets you go to either side of it, but we're so wide we can't avoid it. Size 11.5 shoe for scale. We slid the rock in the foreground up next to it which made the transition a non-issue. Aside from that, we had plenty of clearance and didn't come close to hitting anything except for a few small tree branches. There is a surprising amount of clearance under the diffs, which I didn't pay attention to prior to this trip. After looking at it a little closer on my walk, I might be able to avoid the rock on the way out if I'm careful of the trees and really hug the side. width=640 Also, the trimmings from the front bumper so we could get full articulation up front: width=640 The roads aren't anything insane, but there is no way we'd have the clearance needed on the factory height tires to make it here. Lots of transitions, dips, rocks, grades, etc, but nothing a large SUV or half ton pickup can't make with a little caution. Being wide makes it a little more difficult because we can't go around certain obstacles and the height of the camper means we have to account for the possibility of leaning into trees on either side. Our Jeep just walks over everything and would laugh if it could. Hey look, a Gladiator! (Not really...) width=640
n0arp 09/23/21 03:57pm Truck Campers
RE: Tires - The 10 Year Rule

I wouldn't take the chances - replace them. I've seen tires that look brand new but are aged out go. That $3100 will give you another ~7 years of service so consider it a $37/mo insurance policy.
n0arp 09/23/21 03:35pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: New Ram 5500 Build width=640 This is in an area we frequented with the 3500, but further up the road than we ever ventured with it. We traveled the road in several times with the 3500 but always ended up with a corner up off the ground regardless of the line we picked. The 5500 rolling on taller tires stayed planted firmly on the ground the whole way. The longer wheelbase almost caused an issue where the drivers front toolbox would have contacted a large boulder in the middle of the road, but we were able to put a rock in front of the rear tire to crawl comfortably up and over. It might have made it otherwise, but with little to no wiggle room. Getting here was a great shakeout/test. It feels notably more stable than the other truck in off-camber situations. width=640 The front tires also caught the front bumper when compressed and turned at the same time, so we pulled out the angle grinder and did some trimming before proceeding up the road.
n0arp 09/23/21 02:59pm Truck Campers
RE: New Ram 5500 Build

That’s going to be a tall rig. Congrats! I actually measured this morning -- we should lose 3" with this rig! That'll be around 12'9". The flatbed on the old truck was really far off the frame rails due to it being a bed delete. The deck height was 48" unloaded. This truck should be about 45" (35.5" to the top of the rear rails (highest point), around 2.5" additional height from the tires, and 7-1/8" for the flatbed, but might squat less -- so it could end up a wash. Should be far under 13'6" regardless. Thanks! Ah! Just found the answer to one of my questions. :B Final height is 12'10". Got into a remote site in the national forest this morning and it handled some fairly sketchy terrain through the trees like a champ. I'll take photos later.
n0arp 09/23/21 12:36pm Truck Campers
RE: New Ram 5500 Build

EYEMLOST - I think hydraulic and rack/pinion slides are likely to avoid issues. There are probably much larger chances of issues with cable and/or schwintek slides. thomasmnile and anyone I missed - thanks for the compliments. We're loving how it's turning out.
n0arp 09/21/21 12:53pm Truck Campers
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