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Old 06-04-2012, 02:54 PM   #1
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Thumbs up First Real Trip Out Report

Took our 2012 31FS out for a little shakedown cruise. Spent 2 weeks with it in the driveway and close to home testing out all the systems and buying the things I thought I needed to take along. Here's a report.

1.) Turn signal cameras are almost useless as they lag behind, neat for the kids to look at though, so the money was not totally wasted..

2.) Developed a radio interference problem with the radio. Thinking an antenna wire may be loose.

3.) Included Grill cooks unevenly and is to dang close to the coach wall. Even at recommended distance too much heat is transferred to the coach wall for my liking. I will try to find a grill and longer hose to still use the coach as LP supply. Maybe a Weber will fit in the side storage.

4.) Hot spot on the passenger side engine cowl (probably normal) but shot it at 130F on my IR temp gun. Gonna check if heat guard is in place, maybe add a sheet to that spot.

5.) In Texas traffic from Houston 60 miles North, in traffic, front storage compartments got super hot. (probably normal) but moved less heat friendly items to rear compartments, which seemed just hot, not scortching hot.

6.) Following a tip from Jayco plant service rep, I use both electric and gas water heating element simaltaneously to heat water faster, then swap to one single heating element (gas or electric). Worked great.

7.) Used water pressure regulator as suggested. Water pressure at site was 60psi...a little high.

8.) Used a tarp for an RV mat. Should have bought the mat the salesman tried pushing on me. It would have worked nicely. Have ordered on the wife likes.

9.) A/C worked good. Kept us cool. During the hottest part of the texas heat, it worked hard all afternoon. At night it cycled and was able to balance out the vents for everyone's liking.

10.) Lack of awnings over the slides causes debris from forrest to land on top of slides, requiring me to sweep them off prior to pulling them in. Slide awnings may be a good thing if you park in the woods a lot.

11.) Command Center has a fan that cycles during use. I am guessing this is the inverter, but unsure. Not much air is moved through it, as it is a sealed off compartment. Going to investigate this compartment to see if additional venting may help. Fan ran a lot, more noticeable at night.

12.) Dumping tanks was a snap with the built in sparger nozzle in the black water tank. We are using the drop in blue packets. Had to empty after 24 hours. Grey water filled to a registered 2/3rd and I was unsure how much was in there, so I rolled u pand dumped it.

13.) Yellow Lego leveling blocks worked good, but spot I was in needed a bit more than the 16 of them I had. Going to find some light wood 2x8's to carry along with these and probably get another package to have enough.

14.) Fuel mileage was 6mpg. Traffic was bad and it was hot, so we ran the genset and rear A/C.

15.) Left mirror squeaks like a bird. Right mirror ok. Going to access the bolts and loosen lube and re-torque.

16.) Needed a nightlight, but one of the bunk DVD player with the LED light on ad the curtains drawn sufficed to get the kids to the toilet in the middle of the night, without turning on the house lights.

17.) Fridge worked way better on LP Gas than it did on electric. Freezer worked great on either.

18.) Really need those step covers the salesman tried selling me. That bit of carpet on those two steps would have helped. Screws in door came loose, after a few million opening and closings by the kids. Just tightened them back up and was good to go.

19.) J-Couch seat belts could be a bit longer. attachment to fram is so far back that even a normal sized adult has a hard time buckling up. Kids preferred to be untethered, but made due being strapped in. Dont want to start the buckle/no-buckle debate, but a little more slack in the belts would help.

20.) Must get into 110V TV outlet and defeat the Ignition cutoff circuit. Not having big TV for kids is down right dumb. Plus even when in park, it will not work with engine running...

21.) Took way too much food. Need to plan meals better. Enjoyed having fresh fruit and vegetables in the fridge.

22.) Weight, will post a seperate thread on weight.

It was an enjoyable couple of days. We have a lot to learn, but it is part of the adventures...
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Old 06-06-2012, 05:23 PM   #2
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sounds like a great exp. can't wait to start my adventures. thanks for posting.
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Old 06-07-2012, 11:09 AM   #3
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16) Needed a nightlight, but one of the bunk DVD player with the LED light on ad the curtains drawn sufficed to get the kids to the toilet in the middle of the night, without turning on the house lights.

We picked up these lights mounted them near the bathroom for those late night stumbles.
http://www.rvupgradestore.com/Mr-Bea...-3-p/mb723.htm

I learn how to better post a link, sorry!
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Old 06-08-2012, 05:40 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kave&Lucky View Post
16) Needed a nightlight, but one of the bunk DVD player with the LED light on ad the curtains drawn sufficed to get the kids to the toilet in the middle of the night, without turning on the house lights.

We picked up these lights mounted one near the bathroom for those late night stumbles.
http://www.rvupgradestore.com/Mr-Bea...-3-p/mb723.htm

I learn how to better post a link, sorry!
edited
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Old 06-14-2012, 11:04 PM   #5
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Good to hear it went well! the hot spot on the floor is normal unless you add more insulation under the coach. Make sure it is made as an exhaust heat sheild, as it is very hot.
you can get the TV outlet to work with the ignition on by cutting and capping one wire under the dash on the drivers side. On my 2011 it is the purple wire coming from a 5 wire "top hat" splice. Don't attempt it unless you have experience with wiring. On my unit that particular outlet is also the only one that the inverter runs so even though we dont use the TV, i wanted to use the outlet while driving for our Bose IPOD dock as it sounds 10 times better than the Clarion stereo. It also comes in handy for the grandkids to charge their video games while driving.
My experience has shown that you may want to fashion a tool to assist with the black water flush. on my coach if you look down the toilet when flushing, you can see the rinse head in the direct path of anything going down. this includes toilet paper the gets wrapped around it making it useless. i made a tool (ok so it's a stick) to knock it off when i flush the balck tank. Anyone else have this issue?
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Old 06-15-2012, 06:20 AM   #6
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John, I noticed the spay head in the poop chute is attached with some rather long screws. On screw is catching TP as it goes into the tank. The tank sprayer seem to not be affected and still sprays a full pattern into the black tank. I wish they would have attached the sprayer to the tank with a better method.

I am familiar with wiring, so I will be making the needed modification to the stereo to fix the TV issue my kids have. Since it is summer in Texas, we have to run the genset while driving and use the coach a/c. To quickly help the kids, i just plugged the big TV into the outlet above the table (no extension cord needed).

Jayco factory rep says there is an ignition wire run directly to the 110v outlet behind the TV. This is connected to a relay in the same outlet area that turns it off while driving. He says, as others have, that this can be bypassed by cutting and capping that ignition wire.

I will be running a seperate DVD player for the kids on that TV. I cannot listen to Dora, Phineas and Ferb, etc.. for an entire trip...This will allow me and the wife to use the radio/navigation, etc...

The Clarion has a seperate video kill wire that is run from the parking brake circuit. This is the purple wire you speak of. It kills the video to the head unit. Other models may be wired diferently.

Thanks for your response and comments.
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Old 06-15-2012, 06:46 AM   #7
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17.) Fridge worked way better on LP Gas than it did on electric. Freezer worked great on either.

Propane will definitely keep the fridge cooler in "hot" weather.

20.) Must get into 110V TV outlet and defeat the Ignition cutoff circuit. Not having big TV for kids is down right dumb. Plus even when in park, it will not work with engine running...

Just cut the purple wire at the outlet. No need to get under the dash.
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Old 06-17-2012, 02:02 PM   #8
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Quote:
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17.) Fridge worked way better on LP Gas than it did on electric. Freezer worked great on either.

Propane will definitely keep the fridge cooler in "hot" weather.

20.) Must get into 110V TV outlet and defeat the Ignition cutoff circuit. Not having big TV for kids is down right dumb. Plus even when in park, it will not work with engine running...

Just cut the purple wire at the outlet. No need to get under the dash.
yeah that would definately be easier than going under the dash, i has to get under there anyway while troubleshooting my strange electrical issues and replace the fuses located there.
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