Soon to be newbie - hopefully!

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sheff99

Member
Joined
Jun 10, 2006
Posts
21
Location
McKinney, TX
Hi.  My wife and I have decided we're ready to jump in and by our first RV.  We have
4 kids (8,6,4,2 - two boys, two girls) and we're trying to decide on the best choice.
Since we have a diesel Ford excursion, would should be able to two a pretty good sized TT.

Our biggest hurdle now is deciding on floor plan and manufacturer.  Came to the forums
in hopes that some have experienced similar issues and can offer some advise for us
never-before RV'ers.

1) we've narrowed it down to either a quad bunk, or a two bunk (bunkhouse?) where one bunk
is oversized. 
    - 4 bnks - this one sleeps every kid in their own bed (less fighting potential, own space, ...)
        but is more limited in inside storage space for clothes/belongings/...
    - 2 bnk  - these models you can get with second slider that allows for some extra kids space
        (a place for laptop)  and more for the bathroom due to slide out.  This also offers more
      storage for wardrobe since the bathroom is further down.
So, should we opt for more beds and hope the storage for 4 kids worth of clothes/belongings works out
or should we double the kids up and opt for more storage/room inside.  Since we haven't RV'd with family
before we're having a hard time.  Any advise would be GREATLY appreciated.

2) I think I've finaly figured out this brand thing.  There are a handful for manufactures, and they offer different
labels for a) primarily so they can offer dealers some exclusivity to help price shopper pressure b) also so options can be
somewhat regional.  Anyway, we're leaning toward a Keystone Cougar or Outback, or Forest River Sandpiper or Wildwood.
Any recommendations/advice on this?

3) Some models have a lot more grey water storage than others.  With 6 people (and frequently a 7th - Grandma) it seems
like a large grey water tank would be useful when we're docked or else I'll be towing it to the sewage disposal area every other day.
Unless, most camp sites offer grey water taps at the sites.  Is this typical?  How important is grey water tank size?
We'll be mostly docked at campsites and relatives house.

Thanks in advance for any help!!

Sheff,
McKinney TX.
 

Ron

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Jan 29, 2005
Posts
18,082
Location
Home is where we park it
Welcome to the RV Forum.  Glad you found us.  This is the place to ask questions.  There is a lot of experience among the membership here and we are willing to share.  So ask any questions that you have.  Thanks for joining us.
 

Carl L

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Mar 14, 2005
Posts
7,239
Location
west Los Angeles
3) Some models have a lot more grey water storage than others.? With 6 people (and frequently a 7th - Grandma) it seems
like a large grey water tank would be useful when we're docked or else I'll be towing it to the sewage disposal area every other day.
Unless, most camp sites offer grey water taps at the sites.? Is this typical?? How important is grey water tank size?
We'll be mostly docked at campsites and relatives house.

The combinations of services at campsite that you will encounter include

  • ? electric/sewer/water (full hookup)
  • ? electric/water (partial hookup)
  • ? no services (boondocking)

Gray water always has to go into a sewer, either at site or at a dump station.? ?If you have the ESW site, you simply attach your sewer hose to the sewer and leave the gray water open to drain into the sewer.? The black tank should be dumped only when it is 2/3 full to permit septic tank action to dissolve the crud.

If you are at a WE or no service site your tanks must be closed.? ?You are right that your gray tank fills the fastest and can determine your time between going to a to dump station.? ?There are several ways to delay the need.? RV stores sell blue trundle tanks that you can use to partially drain a gray tank and then take the blue tank to a dump station.? (I would hate to use it with a black tank tho.)

Another technique is to use paper plates and plastic utensils and use the campground common johns for washing up etc..

Simpliest of all is of course to find a full hookup site.  There are a lot of full hooksites in this world, and not only at commercial parks.

With your gang, go for the full hookups.
 

sheff99

Member
Joined
Jun 10, 2006
Posts
21
Location
McKinney, TX
Thanks Carl.

For some reason, the Outback model by Keystone has about 2x the grey water tanks as most of the
similar models.  It's 80gal, where most others range from 28 to just under 50.  If 90% of the places
have ESW hook ups I guess this really doesn't matter.  If there somewhat limited, or harder
to find vacant, having more grey might be nice. 

Aproximatly what percentages of the places you've been have ESW hook ups?  Is it only the most
remote type places don't, or only the most commercializes/largest that do?

Sheff
 

Carl L

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Mar 14, 2005
Posts
7,239
Location
west Los Angeles
Full hook ups are typically found in commercial parks, tho publically owned parks can have them.  Since I look for full hookups, I almost always get them.  I have never found it limiting except at special rallies like Quartzite in which the rally is held on BLM land boondocking.  On the other hand, the Moab rally was held at a commercial park and everyone got a full hookup.

Forest Service camps typically do not have hookups.  National and state parks vary but tend towards the no hook up situation.  Commercial parks compete with hookups and most every scenic area has a selection of them. 

If you want USFS parks and the cheapest camping you will boondock.  If you like commercial amenities and do not mind a $30/night (or more) tariff, there is a huge selection of commercial parks out there.

All that said, that 80 gallon gray tank is not a bad idea.  ;D
 
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