RV Products Correction
In the February 2010 RV Products column (page 38), an incorrect photo and price were included in the information about Mechanix Wear Inc. Cold Weather Gloves. The glove shown was a Mechanix Winter Armor Glove; these are priced at $24.95 and are available exclusively at Lowe’s. The Cold Weather Gloves (shown here) also have a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $24.95 per pair.
FMC regrets this error.
January Cover Evokes Mystery And Memories
We would like to know where and when the photo on the cover of the January 2010 issue of Family Motor Coaching was taken. I’m certain it is circa 1975. I see what looks like my father’s Winnebago, and my aunt and uncle are in the photo, so my curiosity is up.
Mark & Barbara Lindsay, F39549S
Editor’s note: We honestly aren’t sure when and where the photo was taken. It came from a collection of unidentified images in the FMCA archives. We liked it because we thought it helped to evoke nostalgia in keeping with the story about the RV centennial that’s taking place in 2010. One guess is that the photo might have been taken during the summer 1976 FMCA convention in Centreville, Michigan. If any longtime members recognize themselves in the photo and would like to help us solve this mystery, we’d love to hear from them.
The photo on the cover of the January 2010 issue of Family Motor Coaching really warmed my heart. The middle motorhome on the left side of the photo (the one with a Jeep-looking front end) is an identical twin to the 23-foot 1972 Dodge Sightseer that we owned from 1985 through 1998.
That was our first motorhome. Having been tent campers for most of our lives, we had previously moved up to a Six-Pac truck-mounted camper for a few years, and then on to a brief experience with a used Apache tent trailer just before we bought the Sightseer. When we purchased that RV, it opened up a whole new world for us.
Our Sightseer was powered by a 318-cubic-inch Dodge V-8, and it had a two-barrel carburetor on it. It was definitely an underpowered coach, especially whenever it encountered a hill or mountain of any size. I swapped an intake manifold and a four-barrel carburetor onto the engine and then installed exhaust headers and turbo mufflers, hoping to improve horsepower. All that expense and work made little, if any, difference. That coach should have had a 440 engine from the beginning.
We traded the Sightseer in on another coach in 1998, and sometimes I still wonder whatever happened to it.
Thanks for rattling the old memory banks!
Bernie Pokorski, F278369
Grass Valley, California
Mail Forwarding Fee Increase
I am writing about FMCA’s recent mail forwarding service fee increase. Price increases are never a happy moment for retirees, especially when the price doubles. However, I would like to commend the FMCA staff for giving a thoughtful and persuasive explanation as to why this increase has been made. Too many organizations arrogantly increase fees for existing services without providing any rationale or support to their customers. Your analysis is compelling, especially when considering the magnitude of the mail forwarding cost to the membership and the fact that only 3 percent of the members use the service. Clearly this is a service that should be paid for by users, not by the general membership.
With that said, I have two comments. First, and most importantly, please do not diminish in any way the excellent service level that the mail forwarding staff have been providing. In times of budget-tightening, employee layoffs, and salary cuts, it is far too easy and common for employee morale to sink, and customer service to deteriorate. Our mail is extremely important, and if it costs a few dollars each month to ensure that it is handled correctly without mishap, then that is a cost of our lifestyle we must bear. So, please take all necessary steps to be sure the dependable level of service continues uninterrupted.
Finally, please do not expect to keep doubling the cost every year!
Bob Amory, F303329
FMCA Mail Forwarding
One Good Repair Deserves Another
On our way from Vermont to Cape Cod, Massachusetts, we had an unfortunate experience that turned into a favorable event. Five miles from Cape Cod, a hydraulic line ruptured on our motorhome. Coach-Net had 4 Square Towing of Westport dispatched. The operator hooked us up with great precision and care and advised the RV was being towed to Henry’s Diesel. Henry Majewski, the owner, was soon under the RV to find the ruptured hydraulic line. He removed it and advised us that he would have another one made up and we would be on our way in a short while. He also advised another hydraulic line should be addressed on our arrival home.
We decided to have the other line replaced, too, but by that time the hydraulic line shop was closed. Henry offered us a parking space and electric hookup for the night.
The next day it was back to business. We saw the hands-on supervision Henry gave to his half-dozen employees and the work they were performing on other RVs and trucks. We spoke to other customers and heard their praises of the place and the concern Henry put toward diagnosing their RV problems, not only with engine work, but almost anything on the motorhome.
I spoke with Henry about other problems we’d had with the motorhome, including loss of power, radiator issues, and a clunking noise in the front end. These problems were not urgent and could be completed at a later date, but we felt so comfortable with this facility that after our stay in Cape Cod, we decided we would drive our towed car home and leave our RV at Henry’s.
When we picked up the motorhome, all the problems were corrected, and the invoice was detailed and very reasonable. During our entire experience, the people there made us feel like family.
We highly recommend Henry’s Diesel Performance Plus, 867 State Road in Westport, Massachusetts (508-672-5436), to any RVer traveling in the Cape Cod area.
Hank & Donna Glen, F242357
Manchester, New Jersey
Former Monaco Service Facility
Reopens In Florida
Alliance Coach RV Sales, Service and Storage in Wildwood, Florida, is located in the former Wildwood Monaco Service Center. They opened in late September 2009.
We were there recently getting service on our 2007 Monaco Dynasty and received the same outstanding attention we have always experienced at that facility from experienced people who know our coaches.
We came in with an emergency repair “” a failed Aqua-Hot basement heat exchanger. They got us in as soon as we arrived.
We’re sure that you are aware that service has been a challenge since Monaco shut down its service centers last year. We now have high-quality service available.
Brett Howard and Caroline Champion are running the operation as they have in the past. They service all makes of RVs, not just Monacos.
Alliance Coach RV Sales, Service and Storage is located at 4505 Monaco Way, Wildwood FL, 34785; (866) 888-8941, (352) 330-3800.
Allan & Diane Marcuse, F207262