Sunday, August 26, 2012

We Have Retired!

We have retired! Retired from presenting RV seminars; retired from writing and selling RV books; retired from writing RV articles and columns.

Our RV seminar business went first. The recession hit the RV industry hard and our seminars were easy to eliminate from the promotional budgets. We adjusted by retiring from the seminar business.

Our RVbook business also changed. Since 90% of our book sales occurred at the end of our seminars we allowed our paperback books to go out of print. All of our books, however were recently revised, updated and converted to e-books. They can be ordered on our website.

Our monthly column “RV Insight” that appeared in the Good Sam Club’s Highways magazine for the past 15 years was canceled. The final column appeared in the May 2011 issue.

Our monthly column “Life On The Road” that has been appearing in Motorhome magazine was recently canceled by us. The final column will appear in the December, 2012 issue.

We have had a good run. We taught our first community college RV class in 1989; presented our first RV seminar in 1992; wrote our first RV column in 1993; published our first RV book in 1997. When people asked what we did for a living we responded by telling them “We travel around the country in a motorhome, getting paid to tell people how much fun it is to travel around the country in a motorhome”. We presented RV seminars at up to twenty or more RV shows and educational events every year; putting twenty thousand miles a year on our motorhome. We worked and became good friends with legendary RV educators like Bill Farlow, Joe and Kay Peterson, Bill and Jan Moeller, Gaylord Maxwell and Bob Livingston.

Finally, we will continue the “whimsical irregularity” of this blog. Check in with us periodically to see what we are up to.

Our RV related domain names are for sale. You can see them on our website

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Mobile RV Repair at Home

I’ve found an alternative to taking my motorhome to a repair shop for service. I called a mobile RV service technician to come to my motorhome.

The burners in my 15-year old motorhome’s water heater and refrigerator were not igniting as they should. And, the rear roof air conditioner had stopped working. It was not even showing up on the control panel. I also had four fluorescent lights that were not working. I really was not looking forward to taking my motorhome out of storage, driving it to a repair facility and leaving it there for the service techs to “get to it when they could” and then waiting for them to receive parts.

I turned on my computer and went to South Coast RV Repair, owned and operated by Bret Loudenback, had 16 excellent-rated reviews by customers. And, best of all, he was located within 10 miles of my location.

I called to make an appointment. It was the middle of July. Bret was booked solid for almost two weeks. He said he would try to squeeze me in if it was an emergency. Fortunately, I was not in a rush.

Bret showed up on time. I fully expected him to replace the thermocouples in the water heater and refrigerator. Bret simply cleaned the existing thermocouples and then cleaned and adjusted both appliances. The air conditioner problem took some diagnostic time. I was half-way expecting a major repair job on the rear air conditioner. The problem was solved when Bret finally located a faulty communication wire. As I understand Bret’s explanation, the Comfort Control Center talks to the front air conditioner and the front air conditioner then passes along the messages to the rear air conditioner. The rear air conditioner was simply not getting any messages from the front air conditioner.

Bret diagnosed the faulty fluorescent lights as needing new ballasts. He would order them and return to install them. A few days later he showed up on time and replaced the ballasts in the fluorescent lights.

Will I use Bret again? You bet! He is prompt, clean, conscientious, knowledgeable, competent, honest and a pleasure to deal with.

Bret is based in Fountain Valley, CA. His website is

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Sunday, June 24, 2012

Mail On The Road

Our column in the July 2012 issue of Motorhome magazine discusses the use of priority mail for receiving mail on the road. A reader had this important point to add;

Dear Joe and Vicki,

I read your article in the Motor Home 2012 issue about using Priority Mail to have your mail forwarded to your destination and wanted to let you know I liked it. As a Letter Carrier of the US Postal service I too offer ideas as to how to get people’s mail to them when they are away while at the same time promoting Postal Products and Services.

While I am not the official spokesperson for the US Postal Service, I did want to clarify a statement in your article about handing an envelope to a postal employee that weighs over 13oz. You are correct that anything over 13oz bearing stamps as postage cannot be dropped in any mailbox for pick up. However, it cannot be handed to just any postal employee. According to the US Postal Service, any piece of mail weighing over 13oz, and bearing stamps for postage, it must be taken to a window clerk at any US Post Office, or an authorized entry point for the US Postal Service. City Letter Carriers and Rural Carriers are no longer allowed to pick up these items. I wish it weren’t that way. There’s nothing worse than telling your customer you’ve known for years that you cannot take their mail because of this postal regulation.

I hope I have added some beneficial information to you. I do so enjoy reading your articles even though I do not have an RV yet. I am still a travel trailer kinda guy. Though I can’t wait to upgrade to a Class A motor coach.


Tom C

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