May 192010

I woke up yesterday morning to the sound of far off rain, and then I realized that it wasn’t rain after all, but rather the sound of the wind in the tall pine trees here at the Show Low Elks lodge campground.

Yes, it was windy again in northern Arizona, as it is all too often this time of year. The weather report included a high wind advisory for the entire region until 8 p.m., and  they were monitoring more dust storms along Interstate 40, which has been closed numerous times in the last few weeks. I don’t like driving a motorhome in the wind, so I was glad we drove up from the Phoenix area the previous day!

As I mentioned in yesterday’s blog, we have a nice site here at the Elks campground, but it isn’t very level, and even with our jacks extended all the way, we were still decidedly low in the rear. We weren’t in danger of anything falling off the walls, but we were out of balance enough that our shower wouldn’t drain correctly. We’ve encountered this before and I wanted to do something about it.

So we went to Lowes and bought an eight foot long piece of exterior grade treated 2×12 board, and I had the store cut it into one foot lengths, giving me a total of eight squares.

Jack pads

Back at the motorhome, I pulled in our slide rooms and retracted our HWH leveling jacks, and then we put four of the wooden squares under each rear jack. Then I hit the automatic jack button, and we leveled right up. 

Rear of coach on jacks 2

I was wondering how speeds would be on my my iPad here in Show low, as compared to in Apache Junction. While our Verizon phones and air card are on high speed EVDO here, the iPad is on AT&T’s extended network. There is a noticeable reduction in speed, no doubt about it. But it is not as slow as our air card is when we’re away from an EVDO signal and are on Verizon’s slower National Access service. The GPS and all other functions on the iPad work fine here, even on the slower extended network service.

Later on, Tiffany came by with her girls, and we had a nice visit. Here are Hailey and Destiny relaxing on the couch after a hard day at school and preschool. Destiny always looks to her big sister for direction on how to act like a big kid. Hopefully she won’t copy Hailey and break her arm too!

Hailey and Destiny 3

Tiffany’s husband Jim works the night shift, and he was up all day helping Tiffany with her job, so he was home sleeping before his shift started. We took the girls out to dinner, and by the time we left the restaurant, it was getting really chilly. Note to self – keep a jacket or sweater in the van.

Bad Nick was busy yesterday too, posting a new Bad Nick Blog edition of the Dumb A$$ Report. Check it out and leave a comment.

Thought For The Day – If Barbie is so popular, why do you have to buy her friends?

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Nick Russell

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  6 Responses to “Finding My Balance”

  1. Be careful when elevating the rear of your coach, Nick. If the wheels are off the ground, you don’t have any braking. We’re in agreement about having leveling jacks — it’s great to have ours back!

  2. We don’t think you should every get your wheels off the ground when you are leveling. It’s dangerous. There is the possibility of the jacks failing as well as twisting the frame of the coach. Putting the wood (big enough pieces to cover the foot print of the tire or Both back tires) is better. Of course, don’t get too many layers of wood.
    We had wood under the front jacks and the coach (jacks) slid off the wood. Our HWH jacks fold down rather than come straight down and have a very small foot print. Very scary and we learned NOT to put wood under the jacks. Thankfully no damage to us, the coach or the HWH jacks. Also if the site is too un-level, go to the office and get another site. Your safety and the safety of the coach is important.

  3. Expansion of remarks: Put the wood under the tires rather than under the jacks. Be sure to cover the entire footprint of the tire. Do not let the tire edge over the edge of the wood. Also do not only support one back tire. Support both.

  4. In addition to the above comments, I would add that my friend Dale Sumner, of who installed my Progressive Industries EMS, has drilled into me that “when the jacks are down, the pads must be down”. By pads he means something that is made of a non-conducting material. Dale’s concern is that a lighting strike close by could run up into your coach via the medal jack pads. Wood, even pressure treated can get wet and conduct electricity. So if you do use wooden pads, some type of plastic non-conductive pad should be on the bottom in contact with the ground. Like the others I agree, the wheels should not be off the ground or at least ALL the tires off the ground should be fully supported.

  5. The photo must be deceiving. The wheels are on the ground. But thanks to everyone for their concern.

  6. Don’t you just hate it when the sites are unlevel… We have been fighting that since California and still in Washington we ran across one park (TT) that was so unlevel we had to leave. Have fun and stay safe!

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