Full timin' storage... what do you do? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-24-2008, 01:14 PM   #1
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Robin mentioned in another post that we should start a thread about how people fit and store their things in such small spaces for full time use, so I am running with it...

Now that Kirk and I have decided to make a move when the time is right, our entire lives have been revolving around down sizing and preparing to live out of a 10ft. box for a while. Luckily, I have done quite a bit of travleing and living out of a small Saturn coup 2 door, gone to numerous camping festivals and car camped quite a bit over the past few years, and even lived in a VW bus for about 6 mo. so I have some experience in jamming a lot of stuff in a tiny space.

We are about to find out just what it will take to fit a livable amount of stuff into a tiny camper. If anyone else wants to share pictures, ideas or anything related to storage issues and full timing it this would be a good place! I will post updates of what we do as things develop.
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Old 09-24-2008, 07:07 PM   #2
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I hope Leslie and Dave chime in, they're experts. They've been full-timing in a 13' Scamp for <strike>months</strike> 2 years and LOVE IT. I asked the same question when I met them at the Oregon Gathering. Briefly, Leslie said... when you get something "new" something "old" has to go.

Personally, I think the ticket would be to have a permanent storage place. Whether a shed at a relatives home or commercial. I can't imagine carrying clothes for year-around weather. (why carry heavy coats in summer?), so it would be nice to be able to change out stuff as needed. And, I certainly wouldn't want to have to purchase new clothes for the change of every season.

This should be an interesting topic, glad you brought it up
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Old 09-24-2008, 11:49 PM   #3
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Think how much fuel and storage rental charges that seasonal clothing is going to cost and it will always be the same old stuf -- I means that you have to come back to the same place TWICE every year to swap clothes -- Find a better way to carry fewer clothes...

Remember, most of the folks you meet won't have a clue about what clothes you wore yesterday or will wear tomorrow!
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Old 09-25-2008, 12:58 AM   #4
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I know that Dave & Leslie tow their 13' Scamp with a Mazda MPV Minivan, and they store a lot in the van to free up space in the trailer. They also removed their Ice Box and use that space for storage. They have a different arrangement to keep their food cold.
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Old 09-25-2008, 08:28 AM   #5
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Think how much fuel and storage rental charges that seasonal clothing is going to cost and it will always be the same old stuf -- I means that you have to come back to the same place TWICE every year to swap clothes -- Find a better way to carry fewer clothes...
It's not just clothes, it's other stuff too. But you have a valid point. When I full-time, I'll need to store somethings somewhere. Family stuff, etc. It's fine if you have family to parse everything out to.. but I don't... at least until my daughter is grown. A lot of people think full-timing means not having anything but their tug and tow. It isn't always that way. Some just chose to not own site built homes.

I know Dave and Leslie do have a home base they go back to on occasion.
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Old 09-25-2008, 10:35 AM   #6
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I knew this would be a interesting topic, for those who want to try full or extended timing in a fiberglass. I think clothes are the least of the issue (Did I just say that?) LOL.......... ( won't let Dh read this post) as some other important stuff, paperwork, legal doc's, medical etc etc........



When we owned the rv park, learned that many rv'ers do keep a storage unit or with family or friends. But they had more storage than a fiberglass and I know they had issues dealing with where/what to store/keep with them. It will be interesting to hear what Leslie and Dave have to say.
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Old 09-25-2008, 01:26 PM   #7
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I would not want to carry my tax papers and will with me. Also if you have a laptop with important information on it , make sure it's lockup in a safe place in the car or trailer.
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Old 09-25-2008, 04:21 PM   #8
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I would not want to carry my tax papers and will with me. Also if you have a laptop with important information on it , make sure it's lockup in a safe place in the car or trailer.
I imagine sending boxes is also a good way to minimize your load yet have the things you need. When we traveled for 2 months in my saturn coup, we ended up sending a couple of boxes to my mom's to lighten the load once we no longer needed to have those things with us. In this situation they were decorative props and clothes for a festival, so we were glad to get rid of them when it was over and have the extra space in the car. I also imagine you will find good thrift stores on your travels, those are good places to find clothing with out paying a lot of money, if you need to replace something, you can even find new stuff in there sometimes. We plan to pack enough clothes for a week or two, t's, shorts, pants, have enough warm layers to keep us comfortable, then have one duffle bag each of "flair" clothing items that we might find uses for on our travels. We don't do suits or formal wear much, so if that need came up, we would probably get them on the spot, again thrift stores are a good way to go. Luckily, I have had lots of practice jamming 2 weeks of clothes, festival flair, and warm clothing items in a couple of medium sized bags so I could travel and go to camping festivals where it is usually hot in the day a COLD at night. I am excited to see just how we can organize the camper space... just a few more days to go!!!
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Old 09-25-2008, 07:06 PM   #9
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Alright, So what are your general preferences to storage space in your camper?
Do you like drawers, shelves, or closet space better?
Does everything have it's own box or tote?
Any special or clever methods of locking/strapping things down that you are proud of?
Do any of you actually use one one of those vacuum bag contraptions to save space?

These are the things that I think would be interesting to see discussed.

I, for one, like shelves for clothing. I'm a bit disorganized, (ok, a down right pig at times). Shelves are just easier for me, I don't have to remember what drawer of box I put stuff in. I just take a quick look around to find what I'm looking for.

I like small Rubbermaid totes. Small to Medium in size is the key because they are easier to toss around in small spaces like your trailer or small storage shed.

I once read about some clever person who made some throw pillows and a large length "body pillow" they placed between the camper shell and themselves. They stuffed the pillows with a mix of traditional stuffing and their off season clothing in some method that took a few uses and rearranging to make a comfortable pillow.
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Old 09-25-2008, 10:58 PM   #10
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Hello all - Dave 'n Leslie here (well, Leslie ... D is snoozin' with the pooch in the Egg).
Hope our experiences/methods will be helpful - here we go.

Personal stuff - when we sold our "land house" we put some important family stuff & things I was unable to part with at that time into a small storage unit. This is a bit spendy and is soon to be 'downsized' once again, since I am now ready to part with or share stuff I could not before. None of this 'stuff' would be of use to us on the road.

Seasonal clothing - those of you who've met D know he has vowed to never be cold or lift a shovel of snow again! So ... we try to keep to areas of the country where neither heater or AC would be needed. We do have a little cube heater, a propane cat heater and a fan in case we miscalculate. For us, foul/cold weather clothing is not an issue and we handle temp. changes with LAYERING - works for us. An exception would be specialized clothing such as the festival garb mentioned. You would be surprised how a small 'wardrobe' can be ample for this lifestyle. Also truth to Pete's statement about meeting new people who don't know what you wore yesterday.

Storage system - we each have an "under-bed" type box for clothing under our bed, which never morphs into a dinette. The third "puzzle piece" under there is a pantry box for staple foods. We still use the hanging closet, as we attend church when an opportunity arises, and I just like to hang some items. But Donna D was right when she said "ya don't take your prom dress when you go camping". The other 'puzzle' is a series of tubs & drawers in the van, as Frederick said. The seats are removed/stowed for a level deck. And yes, each item has a specific container.

Limits - the bottom line is (as Donna said) "something new in, something old out". Dave loves that I can't be a packrat anymore. I draw the line at books tho and have discovered the value of book exchanges!

That's about it. If anyone has questions, just post or "e" us. Take care, L 'n D, headin' for AZ next week!
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Old 09-27-2008, 12:25 PM   #11
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I to am planning on fulltiming it in 2009. I made heavy pillow shams to hold those seldom used items such as an extra comforter and clothes for warmth or rain. Than way you always have something soft to lean against when reading on rainy days. Both came in handy at Quartzsite, AZ in February.

I really love the exchange of ideas on the forum!
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Old 09-30-2008, 07:43 PM   #12
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Ok, I will say this right off, I don't see myself fulltiming any time soon. But find it interesting that people do it in an egg. Kevin, replied that he wouldn't keep tax papers, will's etc with him.......... Ok, if your full timing where would you keep it? A storage unit? I think I would want them with me, but don't know. And think those type of issues are what need to be addressed when full timing in a the limited space of an egg. I guess a lawyer office, but that would be an expense that some may not want. A safety deposit box? What if your across the country from it? Family memebers home? Again some may not want or it may not be resonable. I guess not paying taxes would be the ideal situation...... But since I don't look good in stripes or county orange I wouldn't try that! LOL. I think the important stuff is what would be hardest to know what to do, such as medical records, tax, will, etc. I know a lot of people who fulltime in bigger rigs and they just carry it with them, but a fiberglass trailer is only so big. And I would have to have room for my clothes, makeup, and hair care products. So what would I do with the important stuff? Robin
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Old 09-30-2008, 09:40 PM   #13
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Has anyone thought of storing important papers digitally, with an online archiving service? They have them for photography and can be set up with password access. I'm not sure having the papers in your TV or trailer would be any safer. Just a thought.
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Old 09-30-2008, 11:57 PM   #14
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Great idea Brian, but what about things that you would have to have a hard copy for the (just in case, issues) I guess that will depend on the individual and what their need are. Robin
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