Wednesday, December 14, 2016

RV TV location solution

Dr. RV Shrink:
We bought a used motorhome recently. We love the layout better than any new models we've looked at. The only problem is the location of the TV. I think the engineers put it in the only place they had left. I am surprised they didn't stick it in the freezer. It is driving my husband nuts. He isn't an engineer, but he thinks he could play one on TV. Now he wants to play engineer with our TV. He has so many ideas where to put it, I can't even keep track anymore. Should I just give up and let him do his thing? I'm afraid he will put it somewhere that is worse than where it is now. --Misplaced in Middlebury

Dear Misplaced:
I have agreed with readers in the past that many RV models have the TV stuck in some odd location. Many of the older motorhomes had full-sized TVs placed in a huge cabinet in the front cockpit. It meant craning your neck to look up at it all the time.

I suggest you let your husband do his engineering. You should not only encourage him, but also give him some input.

I am no engineer, but I solved our TV location problem with a full motion TV extension mount. (OmniMount Play). It gives you many options as to location because of its range of motion and long multiple extensions. I studied a million brackets before I decided on this one. It has exceeded my expectations. I mounted it in a storage cabinet and it easily pulls out and adjusts in many directions.

Once your husband finds out about this engineering marvel -- look out, you may find your TV almost anywhere. Don't forget to give him input. --Keep Smilin', Richard Mallery a.k.a. Dr. R.V. Shrink


Wednesday, December 7, 2016

The RV beast

Dear Dr. R.V. Shrink:
We are looking at a 38-foot motorhome that is like a McMansion on wheels. It has all the creature comforts of home. It has been my husband's dream for years.

Don't get me wrong. I love it too, but I can't get over the poor gas mileage. I keep thinking every time we drive five miles it's going to cost us whatever a gallon of gas costs. It seems absurd.

Am I just thinking too hard?  Are we nuts buying this gas hog? --Gas Math in Maitland

Dear Gas Math:
I would say you are not thinking hard enough. You have to do the math several different ways and see if this RV, or even the RV lifestyle, is going to work for you. I can tell you your fuel bill is, in most cases, not going to be your biggest expense.

Most people with a rig your size are pulling a toad. Your gas-hog expense is going to get you from point A to B; from there you will be driving the toad.

I suggest you sit down and run through what you would like to do for a six-month trip. Figure your mileage, your gasoline costs, camping and maintenance. That will give you a better picture of what your costs are going to look like overall.

Many of your costs are not going to change whether you stay at home or travel. You will still eat, heat, cool and entertain.

You should also compare your trip expense with other travel options. Figure the same trip without the motorhome and add the expense of rooms, meals and fuel. Try doing the trip using a train and a berth. Compare it to some organized tour package.

All these travel methods can ring up dollars quickly. Running the numbers may make you feel better about how you plan to travel and the cost of getting the beast down the road.
--Keep Smilin', Richard Mallery a.k.a. Dr. R.V. Shrink