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Old 02-24-2022, 10:39 AM   #1
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So many questions— not sure where to start.

If you peaked into the Welcome Mat you see my wife and I are 70 and 75 with no RV experience that are about to order a Jay Feather Micro 199 mbs. We are retired teachers that live in Florida ( actually native Floridians) looking for opportunities with the grandkids.

We DO NOT know anything. Reading about the complications with inverters and such in these threads almost has us wanting to back out before we start.

Hard to find a used micro 199 mbs so we are ordering very soon. And then we wait.

One thing we have is the hybrid F150 so we always have the generator in case of emergencies. In Florida there are places we could go that don’t have RV hookups but we would probably not do this for more than a day or 2. So I don’t see the need for the extra weight with the 30 lb tanks. Seems a lot easier to deal with the 20 lb tanks IMO. We are not hardcore boondockers.

Biggest concern is the electrical system and our lack of knowledge. We intend to order the solar package to the roof. I know the unit arrives with a single battery which I heard was practically worthless. I just said we would drop the weight of the propane tanks from 30 to 20, but should we consider tossing that single battery they start you with away, and get 2 agm batteries. Nothing hardcore over the top, but just a little more to pair with the solar system. That is my biggest worry to start with. Is the solar system as it arrives capable of running the 8.7 cu ft 12 v all electric refrigerator?
On the subject of ordering options, there are a couple of other questions that would be a big help. Being in Florida, should we consider an additional Max air fan? ( not optional but should we work it into the deal)
Is the heated tank pads a waste if we live in Florida full time?
Is the accessory roof rack worth it or is it just another potential roof leak magnet?
It’s not an option, but we intend to replace the toilet with a porcelain one. Any recommendations on which one?
Anyone utilizing the Weigh safe Tru Tow WDH? It seems to be a good system and has good reviews.

We really could use your experience now.
There are questions that we don’t even know enough to know how to ask the questions.

Going into this with some trepidation, but looking forward to memories with the GK’s.
Thank you.
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Old 02-25-2022, 07:06 AM   #2
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Not sure about all your questions, but I can give an opinion on a couple of them.

I wouldn't worry about tank heaters, only need those if you are camping in freezing temps.

The Maxx Air fans/covers are nice, recommend them on any fans that you have. They allow the cover to be open even in the rain or while travelling. Not sure you would need a second one in that size trailer, just the one in the bathroom should be sufficient.

You didn't say what size battery the trailer comes with, but I will guess it's probably the bare minimum for the rig. You could upgrade to either a larger single AGM battery or go with the 2 battery setup. There are lots of suggestions on this topic on the site. You say you will have solar panels and a generator with you and only plan to camp for 1 or 2 days at a time without hookups, why not order your rig as is & try it to see what you really need. You can always upgrade later.

For the propane tanks, given your location and setup, I would think 20lb tanks would be more than enough. You will not be using the heat that much and will not need any for the fridge. Save yourself some weight & go with them.

I wouldn't bother with the roof racks. Are you really going to climb up on top of your rig to use it? Why would you given that you have a pickup to haul extra gear.

I have the Fastway e2 WDH setup and find it great for my setup. Great price & easy to use. Weight Safe system seems a little pricy & overkill for the size of your trailer, JMO.

Can't help much with the inverter, I don't have one.

One last thought: if you have not ordered your trailer yet, be prepared not to receive it for this camping season. From what I am seeing, it will be 4 to 6 months before you will get it. You may want to consider finding a comparable used trailer to try out & see how it works. That might give you a full season or 2 to see what you like/need in a trailer and then upgrade later. Hope this helps & good luck with your new unit.
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Old 02-25-2022, 07:51 AM   #3
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Is the solar system as it arrives capable of running the 8.7 cu ft 12 v all electric refrigerator?.

Without knowing your solar specs I'd guess not for long.
Also guessing you'd probably need 600 watts of solar and a full 200 ah of useable battery capacity. Even then a stretch of cloudy days in the winter months and you'd be running your generator.
Link to previous post regarding 12v fridge power useage-


https://www.jaycoowners.com/forums/f...dge-93514.html
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Old 02-25-2022, 08:14 AM   #4
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seems like allot to tackle for just beginning.
couple of observations.
1. you and the grand kids in a micro... this may sound quaint but realistically 4 people in a micro probably isn't going to work out even for 2 days... if the weather isn't great even worse.
2. maybe set your sights a little lower and plan on staying in a campground with full hookups and a toilet/shower on site to use.
3. bring a tent for the grandkids to sleep in at least
4. plan what it is you are going to do.. go hiking? sit around the fire? play corn hole all day? I don't know but if you have younger grand kids what do they plan on doing for 2-3 days?

I would recommend you try a rental first and see if it something you would want to do the second time. I know my parents at 70+ and the grand kids are so far apart in reality that it would never work. Maybe even try staying at a hotel or VRBO and give that a whirl first. Time with family and expectations of what will/won't be done can be canyons apart.

I'm guilty as everyone else in "thinking" this will be awesome... and well it turns into something else because your expectations are going to be way different then your grand kids...

But i don't want to insult you and you may have thought about all of this and have a very good relationship with your grand kids which means don't listen to this guy

and all grand kids like POOLS!
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Old 02-25-2022, 08:47 AM   #5
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Thank you all for your experience and input. I was wondering for a while if I painted such a hopeless picture no one would even try to offer advice. But yes since I’m ordering, you gave me some helpful advice in that aspect. Since we are in Florida mostly (it’s hot down here!) I will try to add a second Max Air fan. If I could I’d try for a second AC but then I become 50 amps.
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Old 02-25-2022, 09:05 AM   #6
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If I could I’d try for a second AC but then I become 50 amps.
Get 50 amps if it's available, you won't regret it. With 50 amps you won't have to worry about "Power Management" and will be able to run everything in your RV at once. Not sure what the reasoning behind making RV's today that run on just 30 amps, except that it's cheaper to make.

When I bought my trailer I had the choice of two identical units, the difference being one was a 30 amp unit, and the other a 50 amp unit that was actually few hundred dollars less and pre-wired for a second AC. That was a no brainer...got the 50 amp and have never regretted it. It will also help in resale if you decide to sell it.
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Old 02-25-2022, 09:08 AM   #7
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Get 50 amps if it's available, you won't regret it. With 50 amps you won't have to worry about "Power Management" and will be able to run everything in your RV at once. Not sure what the reasoning behind making RV's today that run on just 30 amps, except that it's cheaper to make.

When I bought my trailer I had the choice of two identical units, the difference being one was a 30 amp unit, and the other a 50 amp unit that was actually few hundred dollars less and pre-wired for a second AC. That was a no brainer...got the 50 amp and have never regretted it. It will also help in resale if you decide to sell it.
Like I said, if it was Wired for a second AC, I would get it. But at 23 ft, I guess they decided one was enough
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Old 02-25-2022, 09:16 AM   #8
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Mine is 29 foot. I was going to add a second AC before I made some modifications, such as sealing up all the duct leaks in the ceiling, adding the RV Airflow, and the Soft Start to the AC so I could run it off my generator. Now my AC actually gets the interior cold in the AZ summer heat.


https://www.softstartrv.com/rvlife/?utm_CamperReport


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Old 03-05-2022, 09:28 PM   #9
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I am all about the roof rack. Put a Yakima DeepSpace 10 on it and the Micro Ladder being able to mount on the side makes it VERY usable.
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Old 03-12-2022, 06:11 PM   #10
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I would highly recommend renting a trailer with the same basic layout as you are looking at and seeing how it fits you and what you like and or would change. We looked for months at just about every trailer we could find and still ended up finding quite a few things we really didn't like with our purchase.

I upgraded my lead acid battery to a Duracell AGM when my charger/converter fried our lead acid battery, this is a common problem so make sure your unit has a multistage charger compatible with the battery you choose to run.

You need to know how much power your rig will use before planning your battery upgrades or purchases, this may be something you should option if you are serious about using solar and boondocking on occasion. Your solar array size will depend on battery capacity and usage, you may also want to upgrade your onboard charger so you can run your generator as sparingly as possible to charge the batteries when needed, most oem chargers/converters leave a lot to be desired. I believe ours was a wfco 8735 which failed to go to float mode, we upgraded to a 60 amp Progressive Dynamics with a 4 stage charger.

As far as space and sleeping arrangements that is all highly subjective, we have a jayco 22bhm which is slightly longer than the 199 and narrower. With 2 kids we do ok when we get stuck inside from heat or rain, Floridians here too lol. The dinette gives our kids somewhere to play and eat and for the most part we spend the days out and about walking, biking, playing, or reading outside. The cramped quarters don't bother us that much most of the time, especially considering the sacrifices financial and otherwise we would have to make for a larger rig.

Good luck I hope you find what you want. I also would recommend forgoing the rooftop carrier if you can aside from the extra holes in the roof you may also have to worry about low branches/bridges/gas station roofovers or something flying off during your trip, not to mention the pain in loading/unloading.
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Old 03-12-2022, 07:42 PM   #11
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Not sure if anyone else has suggested it but I told my dealer I wanted a cash discount for no battery. I then bought mine from a place with a warranty and brought it with me fully charged.

Now I would consider getting a pair of 100 ah lithium batteries if you are planning to camp dry and use the solar as your power source to keep that 12 volt fridge running. Not sure how many watts of solar that would need as I don't have one.

Over the life of your camper lithium are cheaper as they have a long life, don't die if you run them down to dead, don't need water, can be installed inside with no problems and are about 1/3 the weight for the usable amps.
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Old 03-12-2022, 07:46 PM   #12
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I would highly recommend renting a trailer with the same basic layout as you are looking at and seeing how it fits you and what you like and or would change. We looked for months at just about every trailer we could find and still ended up finding quite a few things we really didn't like with our purchase.

I upgraded my lead acid battery to a Duracell AGM when my charger/converter fried our lead acid battery, this is a common problem so make sure your unit has a multistage charger compatible with the battery you choose to run.

You need to know how much power your rig will use before planning your battery upgrades or purchases, this may be something you should option if you are serious about using solar and boondocking on occasion. Your solar array size will depend on battery capacity and usage, you may also want to upgrade your onboard charger so you can run your generator as sparingly as possible to charge the batteries when needed, most oem chargers/converters leave a lot to be desired. I believe ours was a wfco 8735 which failed to go to float mode, we upgraded to a 60 amp Progressive Dynamics with a 4 stage charger.

As far as space and sleeping arrangements that is all highly subjective, we have a jayco 22bhm which is slightly longer than the 199 and narrower. With 2 kids we do ok when we get stuck inside from heat or rain, Floridians here too lol. The dinette gives our kids somewhere to play and eat and for the most part we spend the days out and about walking, biking, playing, or reading outside. The cramped quarters don't bother us that much most of the time, especially considering the sacrifices financial and otherwise we would have to make for a larger rig.

Good luck I hope you find what you want. I also would recommend forgoing the rooftop carrier if you can aside from the extra holes in the roof you may also have to worry about low branches/bridges/gas station roofovers or something flying off during your trip, not to mention the pain in loading/unloading.
I’m doubting we will do much off grid boondocking— especially early as we learn the ropes of setting up and taking down the TT. That will also help getting a feel on what our needs might become regarding batteries and extended power.
We did order the unit without the roof rack.
At our age probably not a need and we didn’t need another worry on the roof.
We are in central Fl. Any good camp grounds you might recommend to beginning campers with 10 and 8 year old GK’s? Right now my biggest concern is finding an area reasonably close to store it. Everything nearby appears full with waiting lists already.
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Old 03-12-2022, 11:11 PM   #13
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Welcome fellow retired folks! This forum has been a wealth of information for my DW( Dear Wife ) and I. If you don’t mind I will pass along a few things we have learned. Paper plates, paper towels , plastic cups ( I use a yeti coffee cup for watching the sunrise) why do dishes. Use the the “ search “ option on this forum for ways to use/maintain your black and gray water system. We use “ Happy Camper “ black water treatment. A quality surge protector and water pressure regulator are a must ( again the search option). TT ( travel trailer) tires/brakes and wheel bearing maintenance. Pay special attention to weight and towing advice( again search option).Read and believe every story about what not to do with your awning! Grandchildren,small area , weak rubber band = bad combination, yep that’s experience talking!! Folks this ain’t brain surgery, just have fun and enjoy the heck out of it!!
!
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Old 03-13-2022, 09:08 AM   #14
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General philosophical path to take.

Use the trailer "as is" for six months then upgrade as necessary. The number of people who use their units just as they come from the factory vastly outnumber the folks that need major upgrades and modifications.
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Old 03-13-2022, 11:27 AM   #15
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TaftCoach has a great idea. Mods that I need/like etc. may not be what you need.

A few test campouts, even a driveway weekend, will lead you to what you really need to enjoy your new RV.

As times go on you will learn what you need rather than guess.
I have picked up ideas here but even more often while camping.


Have fun and see you down the road!
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Old 03-13-2022, 01:57 PM   #16
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I’m doubting we will do much off grid boondocking— especially early as we learn the ropes of setting up and taking down the TT. That will also help getting a feel on what our needs might become regarding batteries and extended power.
We did order the unit without the roof rack.
At our age probably not a need and we didn’t need another worry on the roof.
We are in central Fl. Any good camp grounds you might recommend to beginning campers with 10 and 8 year old GK’s? Right now my biggest concern is finding an area reasonably close to store it. Everything nearby appears full with waiting lists already.
If you aren't going to camp without shore power, why are you getting solar?
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Old 03-13-2022, 04:49 PM   #17
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I’m doubting we will do much off grid boondocking— especially early as we learn the ropes of setting up and taking down the TT. That will also help getting a feel on what our needs might become regarding batteries and extended power.
We did order the unit without the roof rack.
At our age probably not a need and we didn’t need another worry on the roof.
We are in central Fl. Any good camp grounds you might recommend to beginning campers with 10 and 8 year old GK’s? Right now my biggest concern is finding an area reasonably close to store it. Everything nearby appears full with waiting lists already.
We like the state park system for cost and relatively few sites in most of them. You can also book them well in advance. They generally have the same amenities as well. My kids are 8 and 4 and very outdoorsy types so they love just being outside and exploring. A nice park we have enjoyed is Fort Desoto Campground, it's a county park in Sarasota but the sites in the newest section are all big with water and electric hookups. There are playgrounds and a beach within the park, a short drive away. It's also well shaded and most sites are waterfront.
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Old 03-23-2022, 11:43 AM   #18
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I am all about the roof rack. Put a Yakima DeepSpace 10 on it and the Micro Ladder being able to mount on the side makes it VERY usable.
+1.

Order the roof rack. You can do so much with it...a cargo box for extra storage or easily attach another solar panel, if you want to boondock more. I am using mine for a second solar panel.

If you don't want to climb on the roof often and don't want a second solar panel, put a cargo box up there with items that you hardly need, but should carry along for safe keeping (extra water hose, sewer hose, tools, cleanup towels, tire jack, etc etc). A cargo box won't likely be taller than the A/C so no increase in height.

(edit, noticed you ordered w/o the rack. Alright. For others, get the rack, so useful).
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