October 31, 2011

RV Sizes and House Thoughts

With each day I find more information from the comments people make here, emails, and information from other blogs / forums. The picture is possibly a little more clearer on what I want to use as an RV fulltime. With plans of doing more boondocking than staying at rv parks, and living with my dogs, I am beginning to think a 30'-32' MH will be the best. Leaning more towards a Class A than C and a shorter length so I can stay at National Forest Parks sometime. To help me sort out this confusion, I plan on going to Indianapolis within the next few weeks and looking at and hopefully test drive a Class A and C.  I need to walk, stand inside each type to get a good feel of what I want.

I admit the dogs change my whole thought process. If it were just I, I would buy a Class C, 26' and be done with it. Still, I would never trade my dogs for an RV lifestyle, or for anything. So they are in part of my analysis of this move.

I spent a lot of time this weekend, reading all the information at RVforum  (great info), thinking of what each of your comments and emails were telling me and looking at pictures of different A's & C's with different lengths. The one's I like I am saving for picture purposes only.

Today it hit me that even if I end up loving RVing full time eventually there would be a stopping point. Possibly a point where I would want to RV part-time. Would I rent in a location different than I have now?  Or keep the home I have now, empty  (no renters) so if there was ever a point in time I could not RV, then I would have a place with no mortgage payment. Still I would be paying annual property taxes, house insurance and any upkeep while I was on the road. Added expenses that I don't want.

Then different times of the day or night I think I would sell every asset I have and hit the road for good.  I know full-time RVers reading this have gone through the same "mental game" as I am going through now. I have plenty of time to make my decision, no pressure to make a decision soon but I am the type of person that as soon as I finish my analysis, I am ready to make a decision and go with it. I already know a lot of places I want to see, routes to take and how I want to stay warm in the winter and cool in the summer.  I cannot do that in a house in Indiana, even if I use that as a base address and travel a lot.

Basically I want to downsize more than I am now and hit the road.....dogs and all.

I think you can see that I have been thinking a lot this past weekend. Almost to the point of "information overload".

October 30, 2011

Some New RV Questions

I'm typing this live and its pretty late, still have college football on (Arizona at UDub) and its 1:17am .... yes, college football could be an addiction for me.

Thanks for all the comments today and the new people following. For those following, remember that I am still not really sure when this change in careers is going to happen. It would be within months or not until I retire from my job in a couple of years. I know when I would like to leave but I have some work to do to downsize, decide what to sell, or if I should rent out my house at first to see if the full time RVing is going to work with me and my 3 hounds. Anyway, I have some new RV questions today.

1.  Is there a disadvantage in staying at RV parks if your RV is older than 10 yrs old?
2.  What would be the differences in a 30' Class C or a 30' Class A?
3.  If you had the same amount of money available to by any kind of RV, would you buy an older model for the same amount of money as a newer one?
4.  I plan on spend more time boondocking than staying in RV parks.....is that why a Class C would be better than a Class A?
5.  Best to buy locally or in those no humidity states in the southwest?
6.  I know it would be based on condition of the RV but if a Class A and Class C are the same price and have less than 25,000 miles on them, which is a better RV?

Some of these questions are based on some comments and others are ones I had as I was looking at ads for RVs while watching my football games. I have decided with the hounds I really need at least one slideout, I would prefer a bed in back. I have an iMac at home but also a large monitor attached to it. I would prefer to keep the larger screen set up rather than going to a full time laptop. I have an iPad that I will be taking. I am also going to google on ideas of mounting or installing a 46" HD tv someway the RV I buy.  If any of you have an answer for those two (computer & tv) it is much appreciated.

I decided against my friends bus. Its a great design but I am not really keen on a diesel and a 4 speed stick at that. Yet, I keep going back to a Class A that is 32-36' long. Would I need that room being single?  Probably not but with the dogs it would be more room and more storage.

I have a pretty good idea in my head when I want to make the move but do not want to announce it yet. I still want to test drive different RVs, Ill do that locally and as many different A's and C's as possible.

Can anyone suggest a good RV Guide I could buy where I would have information on what are the best RVs before I buy one. I guess I could probably look on the internet for reviews but thought someone here might have one that they really liked.

Good night everyone and for those on the road and a full-timer.....I envy you.

October 29, 2011

Can't Stop Thinking of RVing Full Time

Well it is Saturday morning here in Indiana and so far I haven't accomplished anything planned today. I am needing to install a new storm door but it was in the 30s this morning when the hounds and I went outside for the first time of many today. (They think I am their doorman on Weekends) So without being motivated enough to start that installation and complete before my addiction of college football that starts at noon, local time....it looks like it might be a multiple day job.

Thanks for all the new followers, comments and emails.  It is certainly nice to hear from those that have gone through similar thoughts I have had when first thoughts of RVing full time start to appear on a daily basis. As you see I have added some new blogs from the ones you listed and I liked. Also my favorite links is increasing and you will notice that is also becoming longer.  

I figured out the process of uploading photos to blogger from iPhoto. I have also renewed my little knowledge of HTML to where I can manipulate the way I want things.....except staring this post to the right of the photo above instead of below it.
That picture is across the highway from my house, looking from my drive.  It is a July picture but looks much better than what is there now, since the farmer spent last Thursday picking his corn before it rained. Is the view a reason I am hesitant in selling my soon to be paid for small house in rural america? 

Like I said yesterday, I have about decided what I need is a Class C - 25-29', 1 or 2 slide outs, and something around the $50K range or lower. After reading some blogs last night and then at different RVs pictured online I was feeling pretty good about what I wanted.

That is until I called my friend Dennis in Alamogordo NM who has converted an older passenger bus into a 40' beautiful RV.  Here is a picture of it:

That paint job is a vinyl application like you see on cars for NASCAR. The dome in front is the TV Satalite with 2 AC. So you see where I am going with this story?  Scrambles the brain cells doesn't it. Yet I would be limited in where I could park, what RV parks I could get into. Yet it is built with added features to boondock for quite a long time.

These pictures will give you some idea what is inside but they were taken during installation.  He is about finished wrapping everything up and will take finished photos then. He and his wife bought all top of the line stuff.

With the amount of generators, propane tanks, fresh -gray-black water tanks, staying somewhere solo for a while is possible. Tires have been changed to be able to get off and on pavement. Everything inside is new, from the laminate flooring to the custom made kitchen cabinets. You might be wondering why is he selling this after doing all the work???  Health reasons.
It is so tempting, it's within my price range, I know he has done quality work with long term RVing in mind. Gets 10-12 mpg cruising at 55-60 mph. Still it's HUGE! It might be too much to drive for a first timer like myself. I was really beginning to like those Class C's 25'-29' long.

So there you have it.  It's a lazy Saturday morning so far, good coffee, the hounds have been out and are all sleeping for most of the day and I sit here and read new information, new blogs and look at different vehicles.....and my storm door is still in the box leaning up against the wall waiting to be tackled.

The converted 40' Bus or the Class C RV ?????

October 28, 2011

RV Sizes and Types

First of all thanks for all the comments and new followers after my first post. I am not new to blogging, just to this niche and it was nice to see that some people decided to hang around and see what I end up doing. I will read all the comments and will answer emails as soon as I can.

Well it was a pretty productive day and some answers are starting to surface. With my 3 dogs that I am going to travel with, I am thinking a 27'-29', Class C with a sideout is what I am going to need. It is tempting to buy the older 35+ Class A but from most of the blogs that I am reading, they are able to get into some spots where a smaller RV has it's advantages. I am going to want to stay out in the open more than parks. There is a huge selection but I have narrowed my search to the Southwestern part of the USA. I found in my VW Bus buying day, the southwest had dry metal and very little rust if any.

Which brings up the question, is it better to buy from a private party or a dealer?

Even the Class C 28' with no sideouts looks to have enough room for my hounds to sleep (their favorite hobby) while driving or even after parked and set up for a month stay. I walk the dogs daily using retractable leashes. They can go out 25' while we walk but I can control that with a push of a button. Their only problem is, they love people and always seem to move that direct to be able to sniff them a little or sit to be petted.

These blogs are really a great source of information for someone that has traveled but NEVER by RV.

So, before I head out to do some work on my blog, I guess I am looking for a Class C, 1 sideout, 27'-29', Gas Fuel, from either a dealer or private owner located in the Southwestern USA.

In the mean time I am going to try to get some pages up and filled in. Then give you some pictures and history of the hounds so you know will be taking this adventure with me. Also I tried many times to get a profile picture up but Blogspot didn't like them and kept having "internal errors", yet they didn't seem to mind adding the same picture to when I was following a blog.....go figure.

I am also finding that adding photos from iPhoto on my iMac is not a smooth friendship. As soon as I figure out how to keep Picasa from importing ALL (1,000s) of my photos from my hard drive, I will then load them into the blog from Picasa. I am computer literate, worked online at home from '05-'09, so it should not take to long to figure out what I want to do.

Can I follow these blogs of other people if I am using a WordPress blog instead of Blogger?  My frustration trying to use Blogspot is the same as it was years ago when I decided to move to WordPress.

Anyway, wherever you are, have a great Friday night and weekend.

Yes, my mind is still going a thousand mph with all this new exciting information.

October 27, 2011

Am I crazy????

I thought this "itch" had gone away but once again it has come back with a roar! Maybe even worse than having poison ivy in the middle of a hot summer day. What is that "itch" I speak of....RVing full time and traveling with 3 great hounds.

Am I crazy?

Read on and if let me know....I really wonder sometimes.

I am sitting here 2 years and 7 months from retirement, a great job, along with a military retirement check that shows up the 1st of every month in my bank account no matter what happens.. I live near my favorite university (alumnus), a great rural setting for my house dogs, and a house that is close to being paid for. I have lived and traveled all over the United States, either by car or bicycle. I have lived in a small beach town (no longer small), on an island in the PNW, the mountains of Colorado and a small rural town in southern Indiana.

I had everything planned out until just last Friday when I caught the story about Glen on the Yahoo main page. That led me to his blog, where I went home after work and started reading his story from day 1. I then started wondering if I could RV full time with my best friends, ones that I would never give up. I spent this past week looking at different RV's, reading all kinds of different blogs from full time RVer's and even looked at some YouTube video's of RVers.

Today after I had Googled "Full Time RVing with dogs", I found more and more blogs to read but one that really caught my eye was Me and My Dog & My RV. I then spent the rest of the day reading her blog from day one, gaining valuable information from someone that went full time and had no previous RV experience.

I keep thinking to myself .... WHY?

I have everything that I need right where I am at. I have lived in this house since 1997 and yet I have an urge to "hit the road"??  I've traveled before. I've lived in some great vacation spots. One of the best summers of my life was riding a solo bicycle trip across the USA from Indiana to San Diego and then up the coast highway from San Diego to Seattle. Is that traveling experience the core of this desire I can't get out of my mind?  I don't know. I hope the answers are right around the corner.

Maybe this blog will be read by RVer's and/or people that have basset hounds or bloodhounds and THEY can comment and let me know if I am losing my mind or not.

I will continue to read as much information as I can find, taking notes along the way, about full time RVing with dogs. I will continue to following my current plan of an ongoing simplification process in my life. Hopefully as time passes on I will find an answer to this desire to RV full time, that is driving me insane right now. My mind is going Mach 1 with all the possibilities.

For those that find this blog and read to this point, all comments are welcomed and any advice is appreciated.