November, 2002
Happy Thanksgiving!

Total subscribers this issue 7991! Last issue 7781!
Welcome to our new 210 Subscribers!
Inside this issue:
    - Feeling the Heat  ... by Les Doll  - Old Can Become
New Again    by Peggi McDonald  - The NEW Rverscorner
bulletin board!  - HOLIDAY STRESS BUSTERS   by Don Wetmore
- RV Glossary - terms and phrases used by RV'ers  - Trust My
Mechanic ... by Austin C. Davis  - Happy Camper RV Service
Joke of the Day: Classified Ad Section:


Feeling the Heat   By Les Doll
It's Novemberrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!
If your furnace malfunctions during the night (it always
quits at 3 am) here are a couple of "quick fixs" you may
want to try.
1. Throw on another blanket and go back to bed!
2. Make sure the furnace has adequate voltage. A depleted
battery will not run the blower motor fast enough to allow
the burner to light. If you are connected to shore power,
make sure the breakers are on and that your power cord is
connected securely.
3. If the blower fan does not come on, nothing else will
happen! Possible quick fixs are to check the main fuse box
for a blown fuse ... on some models of furnaces there is a
breaker inside the furnace access panel that may have to be
4. If the blower comes on but no heat comes forth ... make
sure that you have adequate propane levels in the tanks and
that the tanks are turned on! You can reset the furnace
ignition cycle by turning off the furnace with the
thermostat control, then re-set it. The furnace will attempt
to re-start and all may be well again.
5. Do NOT attempt to heat your RV using the stove top
burners or the oven! This appliance is meant for cooking
food and not warming the interior.
6. If all else fails refer to step #1.

Old Can Become New Again         by Peggi McDonald
In many areas of the country RV's are hibernating for the
winter. Although statistics indicate that most RVers trade
up every four years, however this is not possible for many
of us. The next few months may be a perfect time to plan an
upgrade your present unit.  If you are lucky enough to have
a place inside to work on your unit, now may be the time to
add glitz and glitter to the RV you already have so it is
ready for spring adventures. John and I have kept our units
for eight and six years respectively. As a result we
upgraded each of them with easy to do major modifications.
Just for info we came up with the ideas but we hired
professionals to do the big stuff.
Our first 'Kruisin Kastle' was a 1983 Pace Arrow that we
purchased in '85.  It had the typical orange and brown
fabric of that era so in 1990 we decided to do a make over
with soft greens.  When we sold this unit in 1993 it
resembled a little 'doll house'; as a result it also sold in
record time.  Although this dream machine was 10 years old
she sported an new attractive appearance.
First we recovered and refurbished the sofa and chairs in a
peaceful mini striped mint green (although the colour was
too light to be easy care) by a local Ma and Pop
upholstering shop. They even replaced all the cloth
decorative panels (typical wall covering of the 80's) on the
walls in the same fabric. Next step was to replace the
carpet with vinyl resembling patio stones from the front to
back over a sub-floor was ¼" mahogany. We finished the floor
edges by adding a bendable plastic type molding over a bead
of caulking where it was possible, we used fine nails in
other areas. This bendable product was easily applied around
some of those less than square corners. I then added
wallpaper to the kitchen and the bedroom area. Apply the
paper as normal but if you add a coating of vinyl-to-vinyl
glue used for borders between the paper and the wall the new
paper will adhere better. Updated café curtains, throw rugs,
decorative trims and voila -we had a 'New' coach.  It looked
out!  standing.
In Kastle #2 we removed the dinette table and the bench by
the door.  A long 'L-shape' table with two chairs took its
place to serve as both my computer station for my desktop
and as our dining table. This meant we looked out the window
during dinner instead of at each other. The printer and
tower nestled out of site in a cabinet with sliding doors
that was sitting on the dinette bench we left in place.  We
couldn't remove that seat because there was a furnace
beneath.  When that unit was 5 years old it was time to
remove the carpet and replace it too with a vinyl floor;
this unit did not need a sub-floor.  Again final decorative
touches highlighted a touch of class.
Just for info many RVers remove a chair or a table to add a
desk or work area to make room for both desktop and laptop
computers.  Use your imagination.  It does not have to be
expensive or extensive.  Decide what you would like to have
and either do it yourself or hire a professional.  In all
our renovations we shopped around for businesses on the
small side so we would be treated as valued customers.
Last spring we completely renovated our '95 Luxor 'Kastle
#3'. This low-mileage high-end diesel pusher with 300 HP
Cummins and 6-speed Allison transmission will be our
lifetime unit. Although it is 7 years old it has every
option we could want but it had no slide.  However our sofa
either needed to be replaced or refurbished and recovered.
We also had a very large leather captains' chair in the
living room. The carpet too was very tired and impossible to
clean.  One advantage to a non-carpet floor is you can see
the vast amount of daily dirt that gathers each day. The
carpet in an RV attracts sand and grime like a magnet. It
just grinds into the floor covering to a level no vacuum can
reach.  So after we had the Luxor for three years it too
received a major upgrade and this time we ended up with the
Space of a Slide from the inside.
We removed the couch to the trash, ripped up the carpet and
gave away the big chair resulting in a blank 8' x10' living
area. We now have the space of a slide from the inside. Our
chosen flooring for this unit was quality 4" x 3' vinyl
planking rather than interlocking 'floating' laminate
pieces. The planking is very pliable plus each piece is
individually glued down so we felt it would be better suited
to our dogs and possible potty accidents.  However because
we had several soft spots on the original sub-floor due to
factory construction problems, our flooring installer added
3/8" plywood as an additional sub-floor.  In the bath area
he also had to increase this an extra ½ inch to bring the
floor up to the level of the Kitchen.  The entry steps and
the front area under the drivers/passenger chairs were
covered in a short pile wine carpet
We replaced the couch and chair with two of the new style
leather loungers situated on round bottoms.  Again here too
the final touches of new café curtains, valance coverings,
wall borders, ornamental inlaid scatter rugs and other
touches completed our upgrade. 
These modifications are only suggestions as to how to add
new life to a tired unit.  Experiment and have some fun.  It
may be less costly than buying something new. Even small
changes can make your older unit look new again.  Happy
travels, Take care P&J
   Peggi and John are RV Lifestyle Consultants, Webhosts of
the Information Site For ALL RVers---www.rvliving.net.

   By: Dr. Donald E. Wetmore
The holidays are a time for great joy for some, and a time
of stress and  frustration for others. None of us should be
denied the joys of the  holiday season and so I have put
together the following seven  suggestions to help you "bust"
the holiday stress and enjoy this time  more.
1. Plan ahead. We know well in advance, (like a year
before), that the  holidays will require a lot more of our
time for special preparations in  addition to our regular
routines and responsibilities. However, many of  us get
caught short, in crisis management, running around at the
"eleventh hour", trying to get the last minute stuff done,
feeling a bit  (or a lot) stressed out. The solution is to
plan ahead and schedule  these tasks and events with greater
care. It always seems to get done  sooner or later. Why not
sooner, at your pace, without so much of the  hassle?
2. Delegate. There is a lot of difference between "I do it"
and "It gets  done". Which is more important to you? I hope,
"It gets done". Sure it's  fun to "do it all", but that may
be an impractical goal that only serves  to frazzle and
stress you out. Share the shopping, cooking, cleaning,  etc.
responsibilities with others. You don't have to "do it all"
yourself. It would be nice if we could, but there is only so
much time.  And people generally appreciate the opportunity
to participate in the  preparations. "You don't always do
for someone when you always do for  someone."
3. Get enough sleep. During the holidays, with all there is
to do, the  parties, the preparations, the shopping, the
wrapping, and the cooking,  it is easy to pay for the
additional time required with our sleep time.  The problem
for many is that when they don't get enough sleep, they get
cranky and don't enjoy what they are doing as much. Not only
that, they  may not exactly be a pleasure to be around! Each
of us has a different  sleep level that we require to feel
rested. Especially during the busy  holiday period, take the
time for adequate sleep so that you have the  energy to get
into the full swing of things and enjoy it as it happens.
4. Don't overindulge. Anything in moderation. The holidays
are a time  when it is easy to overindulge in what we eat
and drink. The problem is,  we pay for it later and
sometimes sooner. A little advanced planning  might help as
well. For example, let's say you know that you always
accumulate an additional five pounds over the holidays. Make
it a point  to drop five pounds before the holiday season.
Many find it is easier  and less stressful to lose that
additional weight before, rather than  after, the holidays.
5. Set a financial budget and stick to it. We tend to want
to be  generous and when shopping, it is easy to fall prey
to "impulse buying"  and "go all out" with the credit cards.
Then, we experience the "post  holiday blues", when the
bills arrive in January. Plan what you will  spend before
you go to the stores, when you are rational, and then stick
to those budget amounts when you are in the stores, when you
are more  emotional.
6. Don't overload this time period. KISS. "Keep it Simple."
This is not  the last holiday period you will enjoy. You
can't do everything but you  can do and enjoy the most
important things. Sure you will do more now  than at other
times during the year. Have a grand time, a memorable
holiday season. Just don't try to "do it all". Save
something for next  year.
7. Enjoy the journey, not just the destination. Don't
"dread" any part  of it, the shopping, the wrapping, the
cooking, the cleaning, etc. Find  happiness in all of it.
Enjoy it all. Some place all their eggs in one  basket. If
all the celebration and the joy are scheduled for that one
night, perhaps Christmas Eve, what happens if it's a
disappointment? The  whole season is a bust. Enjoy all the
stuff leading up to the  "big  night" and enhance the
quality and your level of enjoyment of the entire  season.
Don Wetmore is a full-time Professional Speaker,
specializing in the  topic of Time Management. He has
another article that might be helpful  to you, entitled,
"Stabilize Stress". It's free. To get yours, email  your
request for "stabilize" to: ctsem@msn.com
Would you like to receive free Timely Time Management Tips
on a regular  basis to increase your personal productivity
and get more out of every  day? Sign up now for our free
http://www.topica.com/lists/timemanagement and select
"subscribe". We  welcome you aboard!
Dr. Donald E. Wetmore-Professional Speaker Productivity
Institute-Time Management Seminars 127 Jefferson St.,
Stratford, CT 06615 (203) 386-8062 (800) 969-3773  fax:
(203) 386-8064 email: ctsem@msn.com Free Timely Time
Management Tips: Visit our Time Management Supersite:
Professional Member-National Speakers Association

RV Glossary - terms and phrases used by RV'ers (continued)
BLACK WATER - disposal water from toilet system, held in the
holding tank until you dump it, in large tanks or dumping
station available at most campgrounds.
Brake Actuator - a device mounted under the dash of a towing
vehicle to control the braking system of the trailer. Most
Brake Actuators a based on a time delay, the more time the
tow vehicle brakes are applied the "harder" the trailer
brakes are applied.
Brake Controller - a device mounted under the dash of a
towing vehicle to control the braking system of the trailer.
The Brake Controller senses the amount of braking force of
the tow vehicle and applies a proportional force to the
trailer braking system.
Trust My Mechanic ... by Austin C. Davis
Reader Question: I just had my brakes replaced and they are
now squealing. My mechanic says this is normal, why did I
have to pay for normal brake squeal? Is he just blowing me
Dear concerned car owner,
This unfortunately can happen more than you or I want it to.
A certain amount of high-pitched brake noise is considered
"normal" these days because of the harder semi-metallic
brake pads that are used on cars now. In my experience, the
smaller cars like Honda and Toyota seem to have the most
trouble with this. Squeals heard the first few stops in the
morning when the brakes are cold and somewhat damp from dew,
and squeals that are heard the last few feet while coming to
a stop are usually nothing to worry about.
Semi-metallic brakes are made of bits of metal shavings in
place of the asbestos material that has been banned by the
U.S. government. These semi-metallic brakes have great
stopping power and have a long wear life, but can cause a
high-pitched squeal that drives car owners crazy and
frustrates mechanics who can't get it to go away to please
their customers.
When are squeals not a problem? Some brands of semi-metallic
pads are inherently noisier than others because of the
ingredients used in the manufacture of the friction
material. Think of it this way, the longer life pads or pads
that claim to have more stopping power usually contain more
metallic material. Yes, they will last longer and could
enhance braking but the chance of causing a squeal noise is
very high. The squealing noise that might be caused from use
of these pads does not affect braking performance and does
not indicate a brake problem.
Brake squeal is caused by vibration between the brake pads,
rotors, and calipers. Having the brake rotors refinished or
trued (machining a small layer of the metal away from the
brake rotor to make it smooth and "true" again) and a thin
layer of a silicone compound placed on the back of the brake
pads are a great way to reduce the squeal if the
semi-metalic pads are the culprit of the noise and not due
to a worn out brake pad.
Why does this squeal happen anyway?  The brake rotor is the
round metal object that the brake pads squeeze together like
the white part of an Oreo cookie. The rotor is metal and has
a smooth slick finish, and the brake pads are made of metal
shavings and also have a smooth somewhat slick finish. The
more metallic material found in the pad the greater the
chance for noise, and vise-versa.
The other type of brake pad is called organic. There is no
metallic material used in this kind of brake pad. Organic
style brake pads can only be used on vehicles that are
specifically designed to use them. Improper use of organic
pads on a vehicle designed to use semi-metallic can severely
reduce stopping ability. Organic pads are softer than semi
metallic and usually do not have a squeal problem.
Unfortunately due to shorter life expectancy, inability to
stop larger vehicles, and the addition of substances like
asbestos in their construction, they are not very widely
When are squeals signaling a problem? Sometimes brake
squeals are an indication that maintenance is required. Some
common conditions that cause brake noise are:
Heat cracked or worn "un-true" rotors  Rough finish on
resurfaced rotors  Loose fitting brake pads in the caliper
Lack of silicone compound on back of brake pad  Missing
springs or anti-rattle clips that should be on the caliper
or pad  Improper tightening sequence of lug nuts or caliper
Most GM cars are equipped with a small thin piece of metal
attached to the brake pad to act as a warning indicator when
the pad material is getting low and the brake pads should be
replaced. This inexpensive warning device can be deceiving
though, because this warning noise is present when the
brakes are not depressed. When the brakes are applied, the
warning noise goes away because the indicator has now been
forced against the brake rotor and is not able to vibrate
which causes this whistling noise.
If you hear brake noises other than a squeal, it could mean
your brake pads are worn out and need to be replaced. If
your brake pedal feels different than normal or if you've
noticed any change in the way your vehicle brakes (pulls to
one side when braking or requires more pressure on the brake
pedal), have the brake system inspected at once.
What should I do? What can you do as a customer to reduce
the chance of squealing brakes? First of all, noisy brakes
should always be inspected to make sure there isn't a
problem with the braking system. If the pads have worn down
to the point where metal-to-metal contact is occurring, your
vehicle may not be able to stop safely, and you may damage
the brake rotors or drums to the point where they have to be
replaced. Sometimes a few harder-than-normal stops can
"de-glaze" the brake pads and help reduce the squealing
noise for a while.
There are many aftermarket brake pads that claim to be
"quiet" or have been "designed" for import and front wheel
drive vehicles that you can choose from. Personally, I have
had the best luck replacing the brake pads on small vehicles
like Honda and Toyota with original equipment pads from the
dealership rather than using aftermarket brands. It is
usually more expensive to purchase these pads from the
dealership, but the quality is much better. I am an
independent shop owner and my whole business philosophy is
to buy as little as possible from dealerships, but after
trying many squealing aftermarket brake pads, I have learned
my lesson and pay the extra money.
Austin C Davis


Happy Camper RV Service
If you are an RVer located in or near Winnipeg, Manitoba; or
if you will be passing through the area, you might want to
drop in to check out the city's newest RV Service Center.
Happy Camper RV Service is not your run of the mill RV
dealership with a service shop in the back. In fact, there's
no dealership at all! Bill Wegner, the owner of Happy Camper
and a RV Technician with 15 years of experience in his craft
saw that RVers needed and wanted a choice in service for
their units.
Bill decided it was time that the service aspect of the
industry was placed front and center. Car owners can take
their cars to an auto service station - why wouldn't RVers
want the same thing? Over the years, Bill learned that next
to acquiring the RV of their dreams, what customers really
wanted next was quality service. Happy Camper will take care
of picking up, transporting, and repairing the unit.
Bill also noted that there were few options for people who
chose to "permanently park" their RV. These Rvers are forced
to dismantle their permanent campsites, in order to haul
their RV back to a dealership, for repairs that can often be
done on site. To meet the needs of these customers, Happy
Camper will bring the parts and service to the RV. Of
course, there are repairs that MUST be brought into a shop
and Happy Camper will be glad to make this as painless as
possible for these Rvers.
Here's the best part of all: Because Happy Camper doesn't
have the huge overhead costs associated with carrying
millions of dollars worth of RV's for sale and all that goes
with it, the shop rate is much lower than that of a
dealership. Happy Camper is located at Unit 1-1525 Dugald
Road in Winnipeg, Manitoba. You can call the shop at (204)
663-0371 or the cellular phone for mobile service at (204)
470-8180 or e-mail happycamper@shaw.ca.

Joke of the Day:
Bad Drivers
There's a senior citizen driving on the highway. His wife
calls him on his cell phone and in a worried voice says,
"Herman, be careful! I just heard on the radio that there
was a madman driving the wrong way on Route 280!"  Herman
says, "I know, but there isn't just one, there are
Lawyer Croaks
A guy phones a law firm and says, "I want to speak to my
lawyer." The receptionist says, "I'm sorry, but your lawyer
died last week." The next day the same guy phones the law
firm and says, "I want to speak to my lawyer." Once again
the receptionist replies, "I'm sorry, but your lawyer died
last week."  The next day the guy makes his regular call to
the law firm and say, "I want to speak to my lawyer."
"Excuse me sir," the receptionist says, "but this is third
time I've had to tell you that your lawyer died last week.
Why do you keep calling?" The guy replies, "Because I love
hearing it!"


SPIRIT OF THE OPEN ROAD by Peggi McDonald is a 'must have'
for all RVers, both novice and experienced travelers. 
Although written from a Canadian point of view it is 95%
generic and a valuable guide to RVers from all countries. 
For complete details -


"I am not young enough to know everything." - Oscar Wilde

  !!! HAPPY CAMPIN' !!!

Les Doll - RV Technician  My advice is free and worth only
what you gain from it! E-mail address