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Old 08-12-2013, 09:39 AM   #1
Commercial Member
KevinPete's Avatar
Name: Kevin
Trailer: 1995 Scamp 13
Posts: 260
First real trip with the Scamp

We took a week-long trip to Maine last week, thought I'd share the experience. I have used the Scamp several times close to home, this was the first trip over 50 miles from home. We left home early Sunday morning, which turned out to be a great idea. We went through Albany/Troy with almost no traffic. Average on the highway was about 14/15 mpg, versus 16/17 with just an empty truck.

Had a few "mishaps", which really didn't cause much grief. First was throwing a dust cap somewhere along the road. Have spares now, and I know where every Tractor Supply from here to Maine is! Also know that they don't open until 9 on Sunday! We stopped at Camping World in Chichester, NH- I had this in mind as a possible rest stop, depending on how far we made it. No dice- the prices (even the "Club" prices) were crazy, and no one in the store had any idea what a dust cap was. Definitely not a place for a cheapskate DIY'er.

Stayed overnight in the RV parking in Freeport, which wasn't really planned, but we had to make a few stops/side trips to get some stuff that we forgot/lost (cell phone charger, aluminum foil, bowls ) No issues with parking there, several other RV's overnighted there. Also, was a fair or something in Ogonquit, took us 45 min. to get through town. Will take a more direct/faster route than Route 1 next time, although I hate highway driving.

Camper towed great, hardly knew it was back there. Some rough spots on Route 1 kind of made me pucker, but the only incident inside the camper was that the drawer slid out, just put it on the floor for this trip. Cabinet locks are on the list.

We took our time, overall it was about 12 hours of driving. Crossed onto MDI at 12:45, hit check-in at exactly 1 PM. Stayed at Hadley's Point Campground, I've stayed there before and while it's not the fanciest, it's clean, quiet and friendly. Nice wooded site with water and 30-amp electric was just under $40/night. We were right across from the bathrooms, which was great.

We set up our 9x13 Walmart screen room about 5' from the Scamp, with a tarp over the gap. This worked great, kept the bugs out of the screen room and left us a nice little "porch" for the coolers, shoes, etc.

First night we were there I heard a noise like a clock ticking. Found out that the barb/FPT copper fitting on the bottom of the faucet was leaking, it had been put on with no thread sealant. Even with far more tools than I could have ever used, I could not get the fitting off. So we went without running water in the sink for the rest of the trip. Probably end up cutting it off and replacing the whole faucet, want one with a longer spout anyway. The maintenance guy in the campground was super, offered help and directions to all the local hardware stores.

Also, while coffee water was heating, I was outside and smelled LP odorant. Found that my regulator was leaking. Easily replaced at Tractor Supply for around $20. Guess the travelling finally did it in. Poured about a teaspoon of rust/crud out of it when I took the old one off. Just plain old.

Don't want to give the impression that the trip was all problems, we had a great time and the Scamp was just what we needed. Got lots of compliments, no one would believe me that it was 18 years old!

Trip home was started in rain/thunder, didn't stop until we were well into NH. Stopped in Keene for groceries/rest break, reminded me why I love that town. Had at least 5 people stop and talk about the Scamp, the weather, just friendly conversation. Had planned on Wheelock Park campground as a possible overnight, but I felt really good so we decided to push on for home. Made it in the driveway at about 11 PM, not exhausted but definitely tired of driving!

We sat down the next morning and compiled a "punch list" of things to fix, improve, or include before our next trip. A few of those items:

- Brought waaaaay too much food! We only ate 3 meals "out" in a week, probably brought home enough food for 2 weeks! We had even planned out our meals and thought we brought just the right amount. That extra can of soup, box of cereal, etc. all added up.

- Bikes! Right before the trip, I made a bed cover for the pickup, then decided to look for fork blocks to mount the bikes on top. Just couldn't get them in time. Probably wouldn't have used them much this time, but my son definitely could've done with cruising a while to burn off energy.

- The bed cover- would have preferred a cap, but I haven't found one for the right price that fits my truck yet. The wood cover that I made worked very well for this trip, waterproof and most importantly, kept stuff in the bed out of sight. I included a steel plate in the center and aluminum underneath that was bonded to the truck body as a ground plane for radio antennas, which worked well.

- Window awnings/vent cover- Wish we had either/both of these, condensation in the mornings was a problem. Being able to leave the windows/ vent open would have fixed this. Running the fan for a few minutes each morning helped.

- Bugproofing vents- the fridge vent allowed ants to get in, and there were a few spots (bottom door weatherstripping) that allowed mosquitos in. Not bad, but something to go over and improve.

Lots of other stuff, but I've gone on long enough.
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:18 AM   #2
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Name: Kat
Trailer: 13' scamp
Posts: 19
Well here's to first trips !!!

And many more : )

We also brought to much food lol .
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:55 AM   #3
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Trailer: 92 16 ft Scamp
Posts: 11,756
Kevin I had a giggle on your dust cap story and Camping World. Last month I also lost a dust cap someplace between home and just south of the border. I had a spare with me but for some reason it would not go on and stay on... was slightly off in size. Went into a Camping World and was told they didnt carry dust caps for an axle under 5000 lbs but they did give me directions to a Dexter dealer only a couple of miles from them that they get all their axle parts from.

If your Scamp has sliding windows as mine does, I highly recommend adding Window/Maxx Vent to the rear side windows. Found they work like a charm and I can leave the windows open even in a heavy rain. A bit of a pain to fit to the Scamp - measure 3 times and then cut ;-) also use the spacer option provided to screwing them to the window frame as they create a better fit and the screws dont go to deep into the frame and create a possible leak issue.
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Old 08-12-2013, 01:12 PM   #4
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Name: Carl
Trailer: 2013 Lil Snoozy #161 (SOLD)/2010 Tacoma
NE Oklahoma
Posts: 2,358
Congratulations on your first long trip Kevin.

I've made one long trip in picking up our trailer.
I had bought a cap for the truck before getting the trailer.
I soon realized I had way, way too much "stuff" in the back.
Factory guys got a laugh. "Looks like you're going camping."

I also lost a cap or it was left off. Had grease on the wheel.
I stopped at a Camping World in Florida. The outdoor salesmen
were surprised at my FG when I pulled in. Especially sitting next
to those massive stick trailers on the lot. They couldn't say if they
had a cap or not. I went inside and could not get waited on so I just
gave up and went on. I stopped at a RV center near home and asked
if they had one. The guy picked through a box and just gave me the cap.

We also packed too much food. We found we don't eat nearly as much
out in the campgrounds. We do leave 4 cans of porknbeans in the cupboard
as they will always make a good picnic side or just a standby.

Every short trip has been an adjustment maker in what we take or leave behind.
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Old 08-12-2013, 01:32 PM   #5
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Name: Norm and Ginny
Trailer: Scamp 16
Posts: 7,513
The taking too much or taking unused stuff is normal. At the end of a trip we consider what we used and didn't use. In the process we have gotten better at knowing what we need and simultaneously attempt to improve the trailer and tow vehicle.

Every trip is a learning experience.
Norm and Ginny

2014 Honda Odyssey
1991 Scamp 16
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Old 08-12-2013, 01:37 PM   #6
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Name: Kevin
Trailer: 1995 Scamp 13
Posts: 260
Thanks for the info on the Maxx vents, Carol. I have them on my list to look at, but I really want window awnings, both for the rain and sun protection, and the little bit of extra privacy they provide. Wish they made a MaxxAir cover for our escape hatches. Also working on my awning design, in a couple weeks I'm going to do a pattern test with some poly sheeting, to see if my idea is feasible. Found "garage door" insect screens on clearance pretty cheap, 2 of them would be more than enough to make walls for an awning and a skirt along the trailer. If the awning idea will work, I'll use the plastic pattern to sew up the real thing over the winter. Lots of sewing projects on the list!

Having a lot of extra food is good in one way- we can have more choice in meals depending on what we feel like. Plus, a lot of places don't offer much that I'll eat.

Another thing that I found was that most of our "extra" stuff was packed in milk crates- not the flimsy walmart variety, but real ones that I got from a defunct dairy. I can fit 4 of the 6-gallon crates under the bed, with room in the middle for longer items like poles. I bought a few rolls of the rubber drawer liner and a piece of that under the milk crates keeps them right in place. Even kept our big cooler from sliding at all.

Most of the items on the list are either storage or electrical. Still have a lot of lights to replace with LED's, and several ideas for storage that I need to work on. Almost as much fun as camping!
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Old 09-02-2013, 10:29 AM   #7
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Trailer: Scamp 19 ft 5th Wheel
Posts: 113
Originally Posted by KevinPete View Post
... Also working on my awning design, in a couple weeks I'm going to do a pattern test with some poly sheeting, to see if my idea is feasible.
We did window awnings based on a concept from a Casita in Florida. They've worked out very well. I documented the process in three posts to our blog.

Just Finding Our Way: Window Awnings - Part I
Just Finding Our Way: Window Awnings - Part 2
Just Finding Our Way: Window Awnings - Part 3

Hope that helps.

John & BJ
Mesa, AZ
"We're not lost. We're just finding our way."
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Old 09-02-2013, 12:05 PM   #8
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Name: Linda
Trailer: '77 Scamp
Posts: 630
Nice clean install on the window awnings. Thanks for sharing it.
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Old 10-18-2013, 12:20 AM   #9
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Name: dfas
Trailer: Currently Shopping
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In the process we have gotten better at knowing what we need and simultaneously attempt to improve.
Always bear in mind that sexy leggings us is the soul and essence of beauty.
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