Telephone Number Correction
The toll-free number given for Winegard Company, maker of the Movin’ View MV3500T In-Motion Satellite TV antenna featured in the February 2006 “RV Products” column (page 48) was incorrect. The correct number is (800) 288-8094.
FMC regrets this error.
The “Towables For 2006” article (January 2006, page 66) failed to include the Mercury Mariner Hybrid, which can be towed four wheels down behind a motorhome. Like its cousin, the Ford Escape Hybrid, the Mariner is a four-wheel-drive sport utility vehicle that is equipped with an automatic transmission. It has a base curb weight of 3,787 pounds and does not have any special speed or distance limitations when being towed.
A Mid-Entry With No Slideouts, Please
I relished the letter submitted by Barry Martin, F316109, about the lack of mid-entry motorhomes (“Mid-Entry Versus Front-Entry On Diesel Coaches,” December 2005, page 18). The search for my third mid-entry coach has begun, but the options are slim or nil. Sometimes I am informed that they might have one on the lot, and since no one wants a mid-entry coach anymore, they are no longer being made, so I’ll either have to accept a front-entry or nothing at all.
I also do not want any slideouts, for they’re just one more item to handle. On that topic, I am told that all newer motorhomes have slides. I still wishfully predict that some day, a higher-end manufacturer will see the need for a 38- to 40-foot coach with a mid entry and no slideouts.
Julie Brown, F279356
Author Solicits Submissions For New Book
I wrote the book How To Run Away from Home After 50: A True RV Adventure, and am preparing to write a second book that will include great stories, favorite places, and recommendations from RVers across North America. If you have a contribution, I’d be happy to consider it.
Stories can be funny, exciting, or heartwarming, or describe a misadventure or a big mistake. If the story is about a favorite place, please provide contact information (Web site, phone number, etc.) and describe why it is so special.
Folks whose stories are selected to appear in the book will receive a byline and a personally autographed copy of the book.
If you would like to submit a story for possible inclusion, e-mail the information to me at email@example.com or call me at (314) 308-3785. The deadline has been extended, but I encourage all who have stories to please send them as soon as possible. I also want to thank all who have responded up to now.
Anita Henehan, F289035
St. Louis, Missouri
Thank you for publishing the article about rails-to-trails recreation opportunities (“New Life For Old Train Tracks,” January 2006, page 152). When we retired about 10 years ago, we took up bicycling as a way to keep fit. We soon discovered that rail trails were ideal locations for pleasant and interesting rides. At the time we had a travel trailer and found that an RV gave us the opportunity to go to rail trails across the United States and Canada. We would look up the trails in a state we intended to visit, locate a campground near or on a trail, and head out for a visit. Many of these trails pass through small towns and areas bypassed by the interstates, and they turn out to be fascinating and often beautiful places to visit, well off the beaten track.
We now own a motorhome and have continued our hobby of finding interesting places to visit by first locating the bicycle trails. We usually have our bikes unpacked and on the trail soon after getting settled in a campground. Most of the other RVs in these parks also have bicycles with them, but we rarely see their owners ride out of the immediate campground. We are sorry that so many of our fellow RVers seem unaware of the trails nearby, so we hope your article will get them on the trail with us. We would love to have company on our rides. Cycling is a wonderful way to stay fit and see the country.
Fred & Ann Abeles, F344129
Passover Rally Scheduled
The CHAI “” Chavurat Yehudim chapter would like to invite all FMCA members to participate in our Passover rally, to be held at Emerald Desert RV Resort in Palm Desert, California, April 11 through April 15, 2006. We will celebrate the Passover holiday with two Seders and a traditional Passover breakfast.
For further information or to register, contact Donna Blumenthal at (714) 749-5701 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Donna Blumenthal, F230605
c/o FMCA Mail Forwarding
Last summer during FMCA’s convention in Minot, North Dakota, the decision was made to bring the gavel down for the final meeting of the Alice Detrick Fan Club chapter. This letter is to extend my sincere appreciation to the past and present officers, sponsors, and fan club members for the friendships we have shared and will continue to share in the future.
I extend a special thank-you to officers Don and Wanda Fischer, L110294, and Bob and Sioux Smith, F122125, for their absolute dedication throughout these many wonderful years.
I plan to continue singing and entertaining, and will look forward to seeing you down the road. Please check my new Web site at www.alicedetrick.com for information, photos, and upcoming concert dates for singing engagements.
Thanks for the memories. See you soon.
Your FMCA “sweetheart,”
Appreciation For MEDEX
My wife, Shirley, and I arrived in Las Vegas, Nevada, in March 2005 and parked in our space at Sam’s Town. That evening, Shirley got sick and I called 911. The ambulance took her to the hospital, where she passed away two hours later. I did not know what to do or where to turn, as we were miles away from home. I finally remembered MEDEX and called them. I told them what had happened, and they took care of all the arrangements to return her to Oklahoma.
I cannot thank MEDEX enough for what they did in such a compassionate way. It’s good to know we have such good benefits with FMCA. Again, I say thank you.
Lee A. Ward, F219260
This is for RVers who travel in the Salinas, California, area and experience mechanical problems.
On a recent trip to the Salinas area, I experienced problems shifting the transmission in my P-30 Bounder. Actually, the shift lever was extremely difficult to move from “neutral” to “drive.” The Salinas GMC dealer was unable to provide service that day, so he recommended I call Paul Faro Automotive (831-754-1075), which offers road service and also works on motorhomes.
After a brief phone conversation with Paul, I was assured that his mechanic Mike McBride would be at my location at 1:00 p.m. that day. On time, and after a brief diagnosis, Mike proceeded to locate the problem. It seemed the auto-brake actuator was jamming up and not allowing proper operation of the shift column lever. In order to get me back on the road, he deactivated the auto-brake system, allowing the transmission to shift properly. I arranged to have final repairs completed when the needed parts arrived and I got back to town. The parts arrived on schedule, and corrective repairs were completed promptly and on time.
Paul’s shop is not large, but the efforts he and his workers made to satisfy our needs were truly outstanding.
Doug Martin, F316094
Generac Techs Go To Great Lengths
Several months ago, the 6-kilowatt Generac generator on our coach stopped producing power on a day when air-conditioning was most desirable. The service technician at a large RV dealer in North Carolina spent several hours on it and said that the problem either was the circuit boards or more likely, the rotor and stator, a very expensive and time-consuming repair. He recommended installing a new generator. We paid the bill of $140 and departed to think it over.
I called Generac’s technical support folks and told them about the situation. The technician on the line told me how to diagnose the problem myself. After I tested all circuits, I was to call back for more advice.
It became obvious that the voltage regulator had failed and taken a circuit breaker with it. Rotor and stator were just fine, thank you. Another call to the factory confirmed my findings, and Generac dispatched the parts immediately. Installation was even easier than the testing had been, and my generator was back in business.
I heartily thanked the two men who helped me “” Jon Williams and Craig Johnson. The Generac staff is thoroughly knowledgeable and goes to great lengths to assist the customer.
Ray Sarfaty, F55914
No Worries With Kwikee
We arrived in Port St. Lucie, Florida, on January 15 on our way to southern Florida. When we attempted to level our coach, the jacks seemed to work, but the indicator on the dash was not giving us the proper information. I called Kwikee and talked to Dan, their customer service representative. He confirmed that the LED indicators were not working and said he would ship a new controller that day.
It arrived later in the week and I was able to successfully install it, after a few tries, with Dan’s assistance over the phone. Thanks to Dan, we were able to resume our trip worry-free.
Gordon & Sandra Reed, F314921
Help Across Kansas
Last October my husband and I headed to Carthage, Missouri, to a GMC RV club rally. As we were traveling across Kansas on Interstate 70, we commented how everything was going so well. By about 5:00 p.m. we were looking to park for the night when we heard the strangest noise. We checked the dash gauges, and the vacuum gauge was spinning.
Exit 93 was right in front of us: Grainfield, Kansas, a town of about 400 people. I saw a service station on the far side so we carefully drove over to it. They couldn’t help, but sent us down the street and around the corner to Jack’s Automotive Repair and Towing “” also a NAPA Auto Parts store. We arrived about 5:30. We learned that Jack was busy but would get to us shortly.
At about 6:00 p.m. he came over to listen to the noise, and said he didn’t think it was major, but he would get to us in the morning. He put us in a safe place for the night.
The next morning he got us right in. We learned it was a broken valve spring, and a replacement was available. They had us running and on our way by 1:00 p.m. The price was reasonable and the service was top-notch.
Jack Foster and his wife, Dee, run the shop with the help of two very nice salesladies in the store, and two mechanics in the shop. Should you need help as you travel across Kansas, be sure to swing in or give them a call at (800) 536-4258 or (785) 673-4258. Nicest people you could ever meet.
Harold & Bettie Kennedy, F188469
The Whole Bird
This is regarding the second letter to the editor under the heading “Greater Galley Space” from George and Sue Tholken (January 2006, page 22).
We have cooked two turkeys in our GE Advantium microwave-convection oven, with excellent results. By removing the turntable and the mechanism that turns it, then putting a cake rack on the floor of the oven, we were able to cook an 18.5-pound turkey inside a bag in a metal pan. We turned the turkey front to back about halfway through the cooking time. Because the turkey was so close to the oven top, we put foil over the top. We, too, like to cook a whole turkey. We kept this one whole, although GE had suggested that we cut it up first.
This November we decided it was a better idea to cook a 15.5-pound turkey using the same method.
Buck & Robin Knouse, F14045D