Dear Dr. R.V. Shrink:
My husband and I have a lot of toys. We travel full-time hauling bikes, kayaks, diving gear, golf clubs, tennis rackets, backpacking gear, and now a drone. We look like the Clampett’s going down the road with stuff tied and clamped everywhere.
It doesn’t bother my husband, but I would like to have something a bit more organized.
I think we should buy a big motorhome with basement storage, but he likes the unit we have. He argues we have everything figured out with this one. He solved all the storage problems with bungees, and he knows where everything is. I call it his “pile file.”
He now wants one of those fold up boats you tie to the side of the the motorhome. I have been fighting that because every time we put the slides out we would have to dock the boat somewhere else.
I need help Doc, and I need it fast. He is on the computer right now looking at bungees in bulk.
--Stretched in Stratford
Let me begin with a bumper sticker I saw that said, “He who dies with the most toys WINS!”
It sounds like you two have lots of interests, an active, healthy lifestyle, and a storage problem.
Since you backpack, I’m sure you’ve seen people on the trail with a pack full of gear, and more strapped and tied to the outside that just will not stuff inside. That would be you on steroids. Many people make this work, but the advantages of organizing it all inside under cover are many.
Anything that will fit in, or under cover, will benefit from protection against the elements.
That said, basement storage will come with the cost and hassle of switching rigs to gain that organized space.
If you pull a toad, you might want to consider something larger with storage capacity, if you haven’t already.
Some people prefer to rent equipment when they visit an area, but that rarely works out for spontaneous activity. It puts you on the rental company’s schedule and geographical location.
You should consider the safety issues involved in tying equipment to every bracket you can attach to on your rig. I have seen rigs going down the road with equipment tied to the roof ladder that made me back way off. Many of these ladders are simply screwed to the frame and not engineered to carry a heavy load.
Bungees can, and often do, fail. How many do you see on the road as you travel?
Weight distribution is also an important safety factor. Some people think they can save on tire wear by strapping a Harley on the rear bumper to keep the front tires off the ground.
Many people start out their RV adventure with a rig that fits their needs at the time. Soon they discover it is too big or too small. Others find they don’t have all the amenities they would like, or it has too darn many.
Your situation is no different.
Maybe you should look into a Toy Hauler fifth-wheel. They come with their own garage.
--Keep Smilin’, Dr. R.V. Shrink