What do full timers do? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-28-2014, 05:15 PM   #1
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What do full timers do?

I had an interesting question from a member asking "What do full timers do?".

Full timing is different from weekend or vacation camping.

When you're full timing all the every day elements of life that are often avoided during weekend or vacation camping still require action. One needs to shop, probably more regularly than when home, pay bills, do laundry, 'clean the house', and so on.

Of course the every day is necessary but the special part of our time is the travel to new places, meeting new people and seeing different ways, really expanding what we know.

We are people who are generally on the move, staying here or there for a day, a week or a month depending on the place. Just having fun broadening ourselves.

Wherever we go, there always seems to be more to do, to see, to learn than we have time to do. For example though we spent a week on Fogo Island, and hiked a number of trails, there were un-hiked trails. There's just so much to do and see, so much for open eyes to see and learn.

What do you do as a full timer or long range traveler?
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Old 06-28-2014, 05:22 PM   #2
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We like to find different places and if the mood strikes us stay for a few days. On this trip we stayed at National Forest campsites in Bighorn Canyon and Galatin National Forest. In Galatin we were 40 minutes north of West Yellowstone and no crowds. Bighorn Canyon was free.


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Old 07-02-2014, 06:04 AM   #3
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Everyone's different

We're home now and I've had a little time to think about "what we do".

We bought home 8 books in Newfoundland with on our 7 week trip, more than usual, partially because we had not Television. We also each brought a book with us. The books purchased were all easy reads.

Now that we're home we've been sharing our books with others and find even people who have no NL experiences find them interesting. We like them because they teach us about a place and people different from our experience. One is titled Island Maids, about older NL women, and their lives, describing basically a time that was of extremely hard work, a time within our life span. All very interesting and telling a lot about the people.

Another book was about a Tsunami that struck NL in 1929, a period where towns were isolated and world responsiveness to disaster was less directed.

The remaining books were a all short stories about life in NL and some poetry. All the reading helped us understand NL and her people. I think on every trip we are seeking knowledge, a little to challenge who we are and what we know. There is excitement in knowing what was unknown,

Fortunately every where one goes has it's new and unknown. I often talk about RVing for us being like early dating, or like a summer vacation, where exploration of the unknown or new is an every day event. It is stimulating encouraging you to consider the new.

It may be something as simple as eating cod tongues or our eating our first mess, or taking a long hike and seeing 91 icebergs or meeting an author on the trail who recites his poetry to us or enjoying a concert by a wildly dancing fiddler. Every day is a wonder, even the days when you're in your little trailer with a soft rain falling and a good book in your hand,

There is so much to do, not nearly enough time. It does require a little seeking and some openness but it is there to enjoy. Exploring instead of the routine of every day puts youth on one's face and heart.

Like everything, it's a choice.
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Old 07-02-2014, 06:47 AM   #4
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I can only dream at this point about full-timing or what for me should more properly be termed "long-timing" as I wll always have at least some sort of home base. But looking forward to retirement I am preparing the Scamp for long term boondocking and stays out on the road. Keeping up with repairs and maintanence on the frame, running gear, and shell as well as upgrading and modernizing the systems are the kinds of things I am doing. As such, a new converter with charge wizard, a high-grade solar system, 12V compresser refrigerator, etc. are planned. I never have any trouble staying busy when traveling/camping so I don't want to be bothered worrying about my rig out there!
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Old 07-02-2014, 07:38 AM   #5
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Tim,

We've spent a lot of time preparing our trailer. Every year when we get home for the summer I make changes and improvements based upon the previous year's travels.

A trailer is not much different from owning a home, there's always something. Fortunately it's a lot smaller and easier to deal with fixes and improvements.

We've used a converter with a charge wizard for 14 years now and find it works well. Our motor home batteries 11 years old when we sold it and still in good shape. AS a result we installed one in the trailer.

We are not full timers, our longest time out was 310 days. Most years we do a 5-6 minth trip, come home for 4 weeks and then head out for 2 months, spendoing the summer July, Aug and September at home. I will say it makes the house expensive to own. We may sell it.
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Old 07-02-2014, 07:44 AM   #6
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This is a neat thread. Thanks!
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Old 07-02-2014, 08:28 AM   #7
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What do full timers do?

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Originally Posted by honda03842 View Post
Tim,

We've spent a lot of time preparing our trailer. Every year when we get home for the summer I make changes and improvements based upon the previous year's travels.

A trailer is not much different from owning a home, there's always something. Fortunately it's a lot smaller and easier to deal with fixes and improvements.

We've used a converter with a charge wizard for 14 years now and find it works well. Our motor home batteries 11 years old when we sold it and still in good shape. AS a result we installed one in the trailer.

We are not full timers, our longest time out was 310 days. Most years we do a 5-6 minth trip, come home for 4 weeks and then head out for 2 months, spendoing the summer July, Aug and September at home. I will say it makes the house expensive to own. We may sell it.

Norm,
If you sell your house, what are your options would you have? Would you go to full time RVing? I was just wondering, because I know you have put some thought into this issue?
Thanks,
Carl
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Old 07-02-2014, 10:44 AM   #8
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Full Timing Living Options

Carl,

Everyone thank you for the kind words. We're always happy to share. We feel so fortunate to be having such a great road life. Ginny is forever saying we have been blessed.

As a lot owner in an Escapee park I do have a lot I can live year round for the cost of $100 a month. Hard to beat that with the $100 taking care of everything except electricity.

Our park also has some small dwellings (about 800 sq feet), usually available for $10-15,000. Ginny and I are flying to Florida to look at one this month. Even if we buy it, we still intend to travel. Owning it will provide for our non-travel, we hope, distant future, you know when the kids rip the keys from our hands.

As to our NH home, we find it large, though it's small compared to our former home when the kids were about. When we come home in the summer Ginny usually feels quite strange about the size of our cottage. That ebbs after we start getting visitors though we do recognize it's too big for us on many levels.

The solution to too big is something smaller. We are subscribers to the Tiny House Newsletter and recognize something like that might better meet our needs. Our youngest son and his wife just moved from a fair sized house to a 400 square foot cottage at a lake, and our older son and his wife are considering a similar move. hey are forever following similar life tracks, almost weird sometimes. The whole thing sounds like a movement to me.

After living in 90 square feet for most of the year, 400 sq feet sounds almost palatial.

Safe travels
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Old 07-02-2014, 11:23 AM   #9
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Full Timing Living Options

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Originally Posted by honda03842 View Post
Carl,

Everyone thank you for the kind words. We're always happy to share. We feel so fortunate to be having such a great road life. Ginny is forever saying we have been blessed.

As a lot owner in an Escapee park I do have a lot I can live year round for the cost of $100 a month. Hard to beat that with the $100 taking care of everything except electricity.

Our park also has some small dwellings (about 800 sq feet), usually available for $10-15,000. Ginny and I are flying to Florida to look at one this month. Even if we buy it, we still intend to travel. Owning it will provide for our non-travel, we hope, distant future, you know when the kids rip the keys from our hands.

As to our NH home, we find it large, though it's small compared to our former home when the kids were about. When we come home in the summer Ginny usually feels quite strange about the size of our cottage. That ebbs after we start getting visitors though we do recognize it's too big for us on many levels.

The solution to too big is something smaller. We are subscribers to the Tiny House Newsletter and recognize something like that might better meet our needs. Our youngest son and his wife just moved from a fair sized house to a 400 square foot cottage at a lake, and our older son and his wife are considering a similar move. hey are forever following similar life tracks, almost weird sometimes. The whole thing sounds like a movement to me.

After living in 90 square feet for most of the year, 400 sq feet sounds almost palatial.

Safe travels
Norm,
You really get me to thing about a lot of issues relating to RVing? My wife and I are both collectors! I have never given any thought to tiny home living before you brought up the issue in this forum. But, it makes good sense, due to the fact that if we use a small fiberglass camper, that will surely put limits on the amount of stuff one can travel with in the camper. Life is about decisions! We have to make them daily! Also, as we get older, I guess it is one thing for sure, is that we all need less STUFF!
What is the floor plan for your Scamp? Different floor plans seem to make people feeling better about the space they live in!
Still livin and learning!
Thanks,
Carl
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Old 07-02-2014, 11:53 AM   #10
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As we get older we try to look to the future somewhat and know at some point we won't be able to travel. At that time we don't want to be confined to living in a travel trailer. We feel we would be much better off in our house, where we know the area, are familiar with local services and medical care. At this point in time I have too much stuff on the 10 acres that we own that was part of my family's farm. But the thing is I enjoy the property and the stuff on it so will hold on to it all as long as possible. We don't full time, only go south for the winter and mainly stay in one location that we enjoy as it is quiet and comfortable. Everything we need including laundry and cable TV and Wifi is there. More time on the road just costs more so although traveling the country is appealing the cost limits what we do. It is not in my nature to end up in one of those retirement parks in Florida, sister-in-law lives in one, been there for a visit. Everything is paved and too close, I like my space!!
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Old 07-02-2014, 12:20 PM   #11
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Bob,
I can fully understand where you are coming from. We work hard for the things that gather up along lives way and you would think that after we retire there would be a time that we could enjoy some of the things in our collections! Well, so is life!
Thanks,
Carl
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Old 07-02-2014, 12:22 PM   #12
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Carl, We in general are not collectors and less so since we began to travel. Definitely a trailer limits the amount of stuff you can take. We have worked to add a lot of storage to our trailer. You can see it if you're patient at Preparing a 1991 Scamp under the Modifications section.

Our main reason for adding storage to our trailer primarily deals with organization. We want everything to have a defined space. We have added a lot of drawers and overhead shelved overhead storage plus a lot of 'dinky' storage spaces.

The only thing I collect is memories and stones. I love all the different stones across North America, particularly the different colors and types, our NH beach stones are mostly gray and not too exciting. We used to have a bag for each color we collected. Many of the stones now have been added to our white quartz walk way. There's always room for more because the youngsters are always taking a couple home.

How our house has a fair number of paintings and that is an issue if we move.

Ginny and I now say we wish we had started life in a small trailer. First it would have been a good test for a marriage. Second it definitely would have told us how little we really need to live. We would have had a more cost effective life and I believe equally happy if we had the lessons of the small trailer under our belt to start.

Our floor plan Layout #4 with the side bath. We also have used a Casita 16 with a front bath and 2 person side dinette. We prefer the side bath because you get a front
window, providing a more open feeling.

We went to a mostly Casita rally and every Casita owner who came into our trailer said they thought our trailer felt larger than theirs. It's the illusion of space because of the front window and couch plus the wider isle.

We make up our dinette into a bed every night, my job. In our Casita and Sunline we kept the bed up all the time. That meant I had to make the bed look good every day. When I make it in the Scamp it just has to function well at night, plus it only takes 5 minutes in the morning and night.

We also have 5 under trailer storage compartments and 3 rear bumper storage areas. We don't put anything to heavy in the rear bumper area.

As to your Scamp 19, I suspect we would have bought one if we had owned a truck. Since we owned the Honda CRV we stuck to the Scamp 16 and like trailers.

Of all the trailers we have owned my favorite was the 1982 Sunline 15.5. We bought it when it was 22 years old and water had damaged it. The layout was great and if it had been fiberglass we'd still own it.

The Casita 16 was my son's trailer and he let us use it for a year, nice, well built but not as tall or open as the Scamp.

The reality is that we could be happy in any trailer. For us it's the travel, the slow travel here and there. It is not the trailer, though I'm sure we love it. Changing trailers is too costly and too much work, some how it's like getting re-married, a lot of effort.

We do not spend that much time in the trailer, mostly sitting at our little two person table having breakfast or supper, or lying on that same table sleeping. (We do tend to go to bed early when we travel, about 2 hours earlier than when we're home. and generally sleep very well.)

While on the topic, the width of our bed, 44" has never been an issue. To me there's nothing better than cuddling up to Ginny. The same thing I sought at 17 I still love at 71.

I often thing about the ideal trailer, part of my paper invention time, but don't see anybody executing what I would want except maybe some European designs. Everything here seems sterile though often well built. Again I happy for the travel, for the holding hands time, for the joint exploration and the laughter and knowledge it brings.

Hope I answered your questions, if not keep asking.
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Old 07-02-2014, 12:42 PM   #13
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Mary and Bob,

I do understand your desire to maintain what you have. Personally I have always been able to walk away from the past for the new. Everyone, thankfully, is different and I love the differences.

As to travel, it's really is not much more expensive than staying put and for some people like (Oregon) Byron I expect is less expensive. If one darts here and there and stays at expensive places the cost can increase rapidly but there are ways to avoid that.

As to Escapee Park living, all I really know, there are a lot of people one's age with similar interests and experience. In general I have found my long term stays with them delightful. There is much to do and they know so much.

I suspect as I age I'll like it more. I know that when I'm 80 I won't be able to deal with 10 acres, or even our small cottage. Yesterday I went for a blood test and met this guy whose 85. He talked about his large home and how he's already gave it to the kids, they're getting it when he dies. He sounded so lonely in that large home.

In our Escapee park people are out walking every day chatting with you, having big and little parties... so much more human contact. I think community is important and that's what a park can offer.

Honestly I do understand the ties to what is.


Always wishing the two of you well.
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Old 07-02-2014, 01:25 PM   #14
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While I don't "full time", I left Oswego, NY on October 10th & have been on the road since (265 days as of today). Stays have varied from many one night stops to a month at La Paz county park in Parker, AZ.

I enjoy taking photographs, hiking, and just sitting around reading so depending on the area I'm in, I usually have lots of opportunities.

I do keep a home in Oswego. Although a little bigger than my Escape 17 (at 1200 sq ft), it is on the shore of Lake Ontario in a rural location, and is just too nice a location (except in the middle of winter & our 150" - 200" of snow) to give up.

I have found that I don't spend all that much more while traveling than at home. While gas, campgrounds, & "T" shirts are additions while traveling, I don't tend to buy anywhere near as much "junk" while traveling since I don't have any place to put it!

If you are interested in the specifics of what I do, I keep a journal of my trips - the index to the current one is here.
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