Well, we just got back from our shakedown cruise in our 1983 Scamp
16 that we've been working on ...
We only went two hours down the road to Oscar Scherrer State Park near Sarasota, Fl but it was 2 hours down the Interstate ... which gave us time to see how everything pulls. We weren't particularly impressed with the park. Only minimal hook-ups, water and electric and strictly dirt (and dead leaves) so cleaning the inside floor became a chore. Next time out we’ll carry an astro-turf pad the size of the awning
or a little bigger to help keep the mess outside.
You'll note our tow vehicle is a 2004 Chevy Colorado ... 4 cyl, 5 speed, fiberglass topper ... I can't say that I recommend this vehicle as a TV ... it's about maxed out. It tows but it's a real strain... we can hit 70 on the flat and level, floored in 5th gear and the cruise control pretty much maintains speed at 65 except that it will drop down to 60 on some overpasses. A V-6 engine with automatic trans would be much preferred ... maybe a small van. That's considering that our Chevy 4 cyl is a rather large 2.9 liter engine.
The PO had installed passenger car radials on the Scamp
. I replaced these with Carlisle 6 ply trailer tires
13 inch Load Range C as recommended by the Scamp
owner manual. The new tires
(running at 50lbs ... max load pressure) solved most of the sway problem but we still get a little sway at times ... maybe due to the draft of passing vehicles? or tongue loading? I think we're pretty light
on the tongue because I can shift the tongue by hand a small amount if need be so I doubt if the tongue is over 100lbs ... if was over that I probably couldn't lift it at all ... anyway, any suggestions would be appreciated.
The trailer will bounce the truck a bit on rough roads, overpasses and such but it's pretty steady for the most part.
I filled the gas tank this morning … it took 14 gallons and we logged 235 miles on the trip meter so we’re happy there, at close to 17 mpg. Around town we get about 20-22 without the trailer and we have clocked 27 cruising the Interstate over a full tank before so we'll see how we do on a longer haul. We spent a lot of time with the pedal to the metal.
I have a few more pictures but in this one you can see we've replaced the factory awning
with a Jayco Bag Awning
... we also have the screen room that goes with it (not rigged) ... I think we paid about $250 for the whole thing not including track on EBay ...(brand new)
You can also see the A/C unit in the side window ... works fine. It's a little 5000 BTU model from Home Depot...it seems to cool well even with the camper in direct sun. It'll freeze you out at night.
One problem we had is that the A/C, the fluorescent light
, the Fridge
and the Microwave
are all on the same circuit ... a 15 amp circuit ... so we have to turn off the air to run the microwave
... back to the drawing board on that one. We have two circuits in the box, 15 amps each ... one is dedicated to the water heater (12.8 amps) and the other is everything else (apparently more than 15 amps) ... a project for next year.
The other issue is that the black water tank fittings leak. The tank was full when we got the unit (of course) so we pulled into a truck stop near the house and emptied both tanks. Since then the black water tank valve apparently doesn't close (even though the handle goes in all the way) and the drip cap might as well not even be there. Also the black water tank connection is under the trailer and facing down which makes it a pain in A ... to connect. Another project for next year ... put elbows on the fittings and extend them out the side so I can make the connection without tempting fate.
We also have a water leak inside under the sink. Looking under there, it appears that everything leaks
... just about every fitting oozes a little water ... with the city water hooked up ... another project for next season.
We also added jackstands to the rear bumper ... they work well ... and we uninstalled the propane
tank in favor of all electric stuff ... mainly because here in Florida we need A/C anyway which means going to camp sites with power ... at least until we buy a genset. We'll cook outside on a campstove or we'll zap everything.
We also added a tongue box. We did it mainly so that we can lock up the battery
but it also provide a good storage hole for outside type items … mainly the hose we use to flush the sewage tanks, extra jack stands, jack stand pads, spare gas bottles, fix a flat bottles, etc …
I'll send along another post or three with more pictures...