Foot-operated washing machine - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV

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Old 01-09-2017, 10:28 PM   #15
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Name: Eric
Trailer: Trillium
Posts: 25
Originally Posted by ZachO View Post
When I left on a several month trip in my old motorhome, I did just a little bit of research on clothes washing and the best, cheapest option I found was a plastic 5-gallon bucket and a toilet plunger, much like what they're selling in the Amazon link. I think that kind of setup would work really well. I bought a bucket and plunger...

I never used it. It was just me, and definitely no kids which I know changes everything, but I was out at one spot often for up to 6 days and just never needed to do laundry. And by "out" I mean 40-60 miles down a highway from a town, then another 10-30 miles down a dirt road, hours from the nearest business. If I was within an hour of a town I'd just drive in and do laundry every now and then. And I found that if I traveled from one spot to another once a week, doing laundry then when I was back on the road was plenty.

But that's me and everyone has their own idea of how they want to do it, and I can see the allure of sticking around camp, doing the laundry by hand and being self sufficient.

There were a lot of things I bought, figuring I'd need them during months on the road, leading up to the trip. A lot of what I bought I never used. A lot of what I never even considered buying, I had to grab somewhere along the way.

Not sure how experienced of an RV'er you are but if you haven't been out boondocking much yet, I'd wait until figuring out what you really need before spending much money on anything. If you've been there done that and know you need boondocking laundry services, then definitely go for it.

I come from a backpacking/big wall climbing background and am use to having the bare minimum. The whole rv thing came about as my wife was diagnosed with RA and we had a child. Sleeping on the ground and dealing with living outside was no longer an option. It is amazing the amount of comfort a little trailer can provide! My wife turned me on to the foot powered washer and I was intrigued, especially if washing clothes became one of her chores😆. I have yet to finish our Trillium but I am already planning on long stays in the desert and mountains and if a gadget helps bring my wife on board...well it is worth it to me.

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Old 01-10-2017, 08:58 AM   #16
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Name: Zach
Trailer: 91 Bigfoot 17
Posts: 833
Gotcha. And I would guess that a foot powered washer would be easier on the body than working a plunger in a bucket...

Well a big disclaimer is that what I needed and didn't need is going to be different from what someone else needs and doesn't need. I've never wanted, needed or owned a generator. For some people it's indispensable. No TV, no AC, no microwave. No bbq. Etc. It depends more on how you "camp", so my experiences won't necessarily apply to someone else. And I don't want to hijack the thread...but here's a quick list of what I remember (I'm sure there's more) and I'll be done with it.

I ended up buying a roof rack for the camper. I thought I'd either thin out my stuff enough or find places to put it, or be ok with it everywhere. But I needed it out of my way. So a lot of stuff went up on the roof.

I needed a cooler. I only had a tiny fridge, and when out for more than 3-4 days, it couldn't really hold enough food. I like to have a lot of fresh veggies. And in both the campers I've owned, I've had issues with the fridge just not being able to keep up once the temps get into the 80s.

I didn't use my coleman 2-burner enough to justify the space it took up. I figured getting out of the camper to cook would be great. And it would be. But I really just rarely did it.

I never used the camper table. The way it was set up just made it inconvenient so I always ate with my food in my lap. Ended up leaving the table in Moab to get it out of my way. I use the table in my new camper all the time.

Most important I just realized that you aren't going to be able to "imagine" what it will be like all that accurately. I mean you'll get close enough, but I think that realizing that you can't jump into it completely prepared is a realistic thing to expect. You really don't "need" much more than if you were car camping. Just expect that you'll work it out while you're on the road. Expect to be stopping by a Camping World or sports store or kitchen store and buying stuff as you realize you want it. Don't start out with a giant pile of all the coolest camper gear people told you you'd need, then realize a lot of it was wasted money.

Unless you've been car camping with others who have their RV with them and you've analyzed their set up and already have a really good idea of how you'd do it. I see a lot of my friends with all kinds of gear I know I'd never need. And every now and then they have something great that I go right out and buy.

But it all depends on the individual. There are some basic necessities for "camping" and traveling with a camper trailer. The rest is just dependent on how you RV.

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Old 03-10-2017, 08:20 AM   #17
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Name: Thom
Trailer: Chevy AWD Van Conversion
Astoria Oregon
Posts: 1,015
Cari & I just include a ~2hr chill time (usually wifi included) at a laundromat when going into town to resupply once a week. Other than the grocery store it's like our only contact with humanity when in our happy-hermits-in-the-hills mode : )
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Old 08-26-2017, 03:46 PM   #18
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For us it's once a week 2 loads for no more 2 hrs at a laundromat. Easier than doing a number of small loads in a bucket. Even our friends with big rigs with washer and driers end up using them all the time because the washer and driers are small capacity units.
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Old 08-27-2017, 09:57 PM   #19
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Name: Gilda
Trailer: 2011 Scamp 13'
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Read the book "Travels With Charley" by John Steinbeck for a lesson on traveling light. He describes how he washed his clothes with a 5-gallon bucket with lid that agitates while he's driving! I think this classic is a "must read" for any modern camper.

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