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Post Info TOPIC: doing it all by myself: slides, hook ups,everything


RV-Dreams Family Member

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doing it all by myself: slides, hook ups,everything


I will be 62 solo woman in 5 yrs when I retire and go FT. Just wondering if any out there that can give me the good, bad, ugly of doing it alone. Im sure I can learn how to hookup everything in due time. Was also wondering how long it took to get the RV ready once you pulled into a new spot.

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Jean --l--
*--o--(_)--o--*sorry looks back, worry looks around, faith looks up



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Jean, setting up is easy, the length of time it takes varies based on a number of factors, the primary factor being what your ideal campsite set up has...in general alone I can set up in about an hour, that is a motorhome with a car, BBQ, FHU, Chairs, Mat, Flag, and a few other goodies. Boondocking takes less time, overnight setups even less. It really depends on length of stay, type of Rig, and personal requirements . G

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GOING FOR IT


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I am Solo RVer and although I am not a full timer yet I have gone on a couple of trips this past summer by myself. Setting up my RV by myself includes leveling with jacks, hooking up cable, electricity, sewer hose and water and putting down my awnings. I also put some water in the fresh water tank just in case there is a problem with the city water. I also turn on the cold water to get the air out of the lines then do the same with the hot water so your hot water heater can fill up and then light it. Overall I would say that takes about 30 minutes although it will take about 10 minutes for your water to heat up.

I love soloing because you go where you want, eat what you want and you are free. On the negative side there is driving with no chance of someone taking over for you when you need a rest.

Coly

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RV-Dreams Family Member

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We just got our 33'  5er home and hubby and I really had a chance to look it over this afternoon.......he's done set ups before....early in our marriage we had pop ups and trailers.  This time around, I want to know all there is to know...(I'm now 61) not so much to actually do it....just as a back up check for him.  I take care of all inside and he the outside....however, I double check.  Could I do it by myself, I guess I could....but don't know if I'd have the strength to do the hitch thing.  Maybe a motorhome...since all is by push button.   
On our 5er we have electric jacks, (front and back)  and everything seems pretty simple...it's just the hitch. 

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Melanie White

2006 Crossroads Paradise Pointe 33' 5th wheel
2002 F250  Crew Cab Lariat 7.3
www.melspotluck.blogspot.com


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The only way to find out Mel, is to try to pull the hitch arm. Most women are afraid of it and think they can't do it, but are surprised when they try and find that it's not that difficult.

Jo felt the same way, but decided that she needed to try in case anything happened to me. She's not worried anymore.

Try it and let us know how it goes.

Fred

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Fred Wishnie

Full time since Feb 06 in Carriage Cameo 35KS3 and Ford F350


“If all you ever do is all you’ve ever done, then all you’ll ever get is all you ever got.”


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SkyJean wrote:

I will be 62 solo woman in 5 yrs when I retire and go FT. Just wondering if any out there that can give me the good, bad, ugly of doing it alone. Im sure I can learn how to hookup everything in due time. Was also wondering how long it took to get the RV ready once you pulled into a new spot.




While we are not solo both the Brideandjoy and I have been on trips alone.

For me setting up solo takes about 30 minutes while setting up together takes about 20 minutes.  Pulling out takes about 50% longer.

Brideandjoy takes about the same time wise there are no setup jobs that really take her longer to do then it takes me.  There are a few things I do better faster then she does and vice a versa there are jobs she does much better and faster then I do.

The only thing that actually goes faster having two people is getting backed into a campsite.  Our normal back up process involves radios and two people so backing in solo goes slower.

Mallo

 



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RV-Dreams Family Member

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SkyJean wrote:

I will be 62 solo woman in 5 yrs when I retire and go FT. Just wondering if any out there that can give me the good, bad, ugly of doing it alone. Im sure I can learn how to hookup everything in due time. Was also wondering how long it took to get the RV ready once you pulled into a new spot.


Being the sort of “do what works,” type of person and after discussions with my DW (bride of 41+ years) on this subject, we have the following thoughts bordering on a recommendation.

We have a 5’er and that is what you are considering according to your sig.  The one thing we installed on the 5’er that significantly reduced the effort required for setup, including when staying connected to the truck, was a set of “Big Foot” levelers.  Big hydraulic jacks that can automatically level the rig regardless of the tilt, front to back or left to right.  They can even pick the rig up off all four wheels at the same time should you need to change a tire.  (Naturally “you” will not be doing this and changing a tire – just an example of how powerful these things are. You will need to learn to use them correctly and you certainly can.)

We now have zero concerns about where we park the rig and we don’t have to deal with leveling blocks and the time and effort required to level the rig.  Yes, I am quite physically able to level the rig without the hydraulic levelers.  But it is sooo much easier with them and honestly easier on the DW as well.  Tear down is much quicker and easier too.   We have no issues hooking and un-hooking the truck using the levelers and I believe, once you learn how, you will be able to “pull the latch” on the 5th wheel hitch without too much trouble.  It just takes a little repetition (practice) which builds confidence. You might even select the truck hitch based on the reach / length of the handle amoung other things.  Don't forget about a set of "running boards" on the back of the truck to step up on.  They make it easier as well for me.

Based on years of not having the levelers and now having them, the addition of such a system would, in our opinion, be a “should have” consideration for a solo even if she didn’t move all that much.

Our 2 cents

Safe travels

Bill



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Bill & Linda
2014 New Horizons Majestic F37RLTSS 96

2016 RAM 5500HD \ 4-Wheel Drive \ Link Air Ride
Classy Chassis RV Hauler Bed Conversion \ Aux Fuel Tank 



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Jean,

This is part of the reason for being on forums such as RV Dreams.  Through this source, you will find out what the benefits are for each of the types of RV's.  As Bill stated, the hydraulic lifting cylinders are of great benefit, whether you are in a motorhome or in a fifth wheel.  But, I would add that I will probably still carry blocks to put under the cylinders.  Let me explain why.

As hydraulic cylinders are extended more of the inner cylinder is removed from within the external cylinder, thus as they go out they each would have less support from those external cylinders.  So, I use blocks to lessen the amount of the inner cylinders' travel, thus making them just a wee bit more stable within themselves.  If that seems confusing, let me know via private mail and I'll try to better explain it.

As for the process of setting up and tearing down in the camping process, remember that a good check list is valuable.  In our case, about the only thing that Jo and I do together is to verify that nothing will obstruct the slides when it is time to retract them.  We forgot to do that the first time and a step stool was between our kitchen slide and the kitchen counter.  It caused me to loosen the counter from the floor when everything came together.

Following a checklist, and even double checking yourself, will help a lot when doing either setup or tear-down.  I suggest that if you buy new, to make sure that the dealers assist you with a list regarding the process of hooking up and unhooking.

As you read the threads on the forums and talk with folks that are already RV owners, you will begin to learn a lot.  The main thing to remember is that it is something that won't be hard to do.  I'm sure that you won't have any problems once you start actually RV'ing.

Terry


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Terry and Jo

2010 Mobile Suites 38TKSB3
2008 Ford F450
2014 Ford Expedition 4X4 as Tag-along or Scout

Two minor works in progess....pictures taken over the years and a webblog:

Our photos on Smugmug

Ignoring the Barking Dogs  -  Terry's Blog



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Melstar wrote:

  Could I do it by myself, I guess I could....but don't know if I'd have the strength to do the hitch thing.  Maybe a motorhome...since all is by push button.   
On our 5er we have electric jacks, (front and back)  and everything seems pretty simple...it's just the hitch. 



Mel, I don't quite get the problem with the hitch?  Is it the disconnect process?  Or, are you removing the TV bed part of the hitch?  If you are not "height challenged" and can reach the handle, life is simple, if you remember one thing.  Always, always, make the last action of the truck reverse.  Then, honestly, you can pull the hitch disconnect with one finger.  If it is hooking up the 5er to the truck, that just takes a bit of pre-planning. 

I have found that a stick-on level with a movable marker is useful.  When disconnecting, I always watch the fifth wheel plate for just a bit of daylight between the pin box and hitch plate.  Then I set the movable marker on the bubble at that point.  When ready to leave, just set the landing gear at the marker, hitch up and get the rest of it done, then go have fun.

 



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Ken and Fran 2006 Sunnybrook F250 SD CC PSD


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I"m sure you could do it all solo...keeping in mind some setups take longer than others...so it will be dependent upon which type of rig you purchase :).We had a class C motorhome..Class A motorhome, 2 new fivers and are now back into a Class A motorhome...personally I am vertically challanged...but I made sure I could handle setup and tear down..(as well as driving) every rig we had...I used to use the wheel of the truck...and stand on it to pull the hitch for unhooking and or rehooking up....on the fivers...now mind you its not something I lined up to do daily..but felt I did have to know how to handle everything solo, in case DH was sick or got hurt and couldn't...I needed to know I was capable of getting us either back home or to our next destination if necessary...so I say 'you go for it' you can do it...

Good luck prepping for your departure and retirement...



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Rick and Elaine
Lilly - Our Cavalier King Charles Spaniel (4 yrs)
Tucker-Our American cocker spaniel (5months)
2006 Sun Voyager Motor Home by Gulfstream- 3 slides with dining atrium
2008 Pontiac G5 toad with blue ox system





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Sure you can do it solo, many others are. As to time, I developed my own routine. Since I had a small Class C, I never hooked up my sewer, I just dumped before leaving or every two weeks if not moving.

I used brass quick-connects on all my water connections...made that MUCH easier. I got them at an RV rally. Also had several shorter water hoses so I didn't have to drag out the long one unless necessary.

I had a Plug Dog, http://www.coilnwrap.com/more/plugdogs.htm, to make it easier for me to connect/disconnect my 30 amp lug.

I had automatic levelers that were broken...I was lucky to always find sites that were level enough to not have to level. I always got pull through spots because I pulled a small utility trailer for my motorcycle and I couldn't back it up. LOL!

The few times I needed help, there were always experienced folks around more than willing.

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Donna & Stu (& Sadie, too)
2 Taking a 5th ~ Sadie Speaks ~ Fire Lily ~ ToadilyPets



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I was in the same boat as you Sept 2009. I had many questions and fears. When I decided to hit the road solo.

My first trip and rally was RV-dreams SC.  I had the best time of my life and met a load of fun people. They got me started to fun times on the road.

When I left RV dreams rally I drove to NC for a larger rally, more solo's and more people. I joined up with a group Low's (Loners on Wheels). I continued north with them. Then I cut the apron string and drove to Maine for a few months. I soon left Maine and headed south to join up with the Low's again. Went to many of their campouts on the way back to the Goulds, Fl area. I have enjoyed all my new friends and can't wait to get out of Fl. in March for the Perry Ga. rally and then on to the rest of the upcoming fun....You will learn something everyday when it comes to rving. Don't be afraid just do it.

Safe Journey in all that you try.

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Linda L. Kendall


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I have been fulltiming for four days, in as much as I am sleeping in my 5'er.  I still do not hav a truck (working on that) and will be in an RV park until at least next February or March when I retire.  At least, thats the plan.  If I am able to get a truck, I am planning to go to Pismo Beach with my son in October.  I am still purging at the old place.  It's incredible how much there is to go through still.

I can't wait until I am rid of the old life completely.  I really like my new home.  Poor Angel is so confused.  Everything has changed.  At least the pillows are the same.  that's where she hides.

I'm pretty sure that I will be able to do it all when the time comes.  there are a lot of people in the park that are very helpful.



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Susan
whatsupwithsusanandcompany.blogspot.com/

"Never under estimate your power to change yourself
and 
Never over estimate your power to change others"

2003 Dodge Ram 3500 , 2007 Big Horn 3670RL 5th Wheel by Heartland



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You CAN do it all by yourself ! My mom is 78 and she is on her 5th rig in 10+ years.  She's finally settled on a 26'  Dynaquest pulling a Smartie.  

http://rvingft.wordpress.com/2011/02/20/independence-rv-style/

She's gone from a Toyota mini-van, to a vintage GMC, to a 36' Country Coach with a toad, to a RoadTrek, to this DynaQuest and feels this is the best fit for her.  She has her days of frustration on occasion and has learned who/where the good RV mechanics are and are NOT.

 

In between the Country Coach & RoadTrek she purchased a home in Texas, but has decided it's more work to keep up a S&B residence than an RV, so she is putting the house up for sale and hitting road again.

It takes her about a 1/2 day to completely set up and break down, so she plans drive time accordingly.  She's found NM to be her most-favorite RV-ing state - Angel Fire in the summer and Las Cruces in the winter.

After attending Life on Wheels and SKP rallies, plus reading LOTS of RVing books, she's now the one new RVers seekout with questions.  


Her key is: study then take your time implementing ... (measure twice, cut once) it will all work out - well, MOST of the time anyway!  Enjoy !

 



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Terry & Candace  RVingFT@Gmail.com

1994 Tiffin Allegro Bay DP

Working FT as mobile hearing technicians

 



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Follow up on my status.  

It is now 7 mos, and I love living in my 5th wheel.  I have camped on the beach in Pismo for 4 days and had to be  towed out of the sand (knew it would happen and planned on it), and taken it to the dealer a couple of times, once by myself.  I did just fine and will be retireing in January.  I will then be on the road.  It has been scary at times, but only because it is new, however the more I do it te easier that is.  Just take your time and you will do fine.



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Susan
whatsupwithsusanandcompany.blogspot.com/

"Never under estimate your power to change yourself
and 
Never over estimate your power to change others"

2003 Dodge Ram 3500 , 2007 Big Horn 3670RL 5th Wheel by Heartland

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