Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Leap Year – So What!

Or as I say, just another day of adventures for us.

Our plans for today include getting gas for the Razor.

Later today several of us are planning to take our ladies out for a fu fu ride thru the desert.  That means no 40 MPH thru the river bed side by side. No 25 MPH thru the switch back trails for miles and miles. No playing with snakes if we find one. No just hanging it out next to the ATV’s and wetting the sand next to the tire.  Oh well, it will still be fun. 

I got to check on our mail and see if it arrived at the local post office. 

I got to call Southwest Driveline and get a price for the tow brackets and supplement braking for the truck.

I have to send a copy of my DD214 (military discharge papers) to the dealer for the $500 Chrysler special military rebate.  First I have to find it. 

Also pick up a extra set of goggles for me for the Razor ride.  I’ve been using Carol’s Walmart specials. 

Oh, and we need to move the beast and our 3 other vehicles by noon over to Denny & Susie’s place for a few days.  So, I have to get started…….

Well, it’s the end of the day and I got everything done by noon except the DD214.  Try tomorrow.

A bunch of us went out riding in the desert today.  Three hours and 25 miles later we were back.  All the girls got to drive today.  Here are some pics from the desert and a box canyon getaway.SDC12459

SDC12462 SDC12463 SDC12467 SDC12469 SDC12471

Kellie that’s my job!SDC12472 SDC12474 SDC12476 SDC12477 SDC12478  SDC12480 SDC12482 SDC12485


What can I say other than The Ends! SDC12479

See ya…….

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Yes I Did!

I bought a truck.  A big truck that can be towed behind the Beast.SDC12457

I haven’t owned a truck in over 10 years and never a 4X4.  It’s a guy thing.  It’s a Dodge 1500 4X4 with a eight foot bed so the Razor can fit in it. It’s a 4X4 so it can be flat towed behind the motorhome.  The Dodge is the only 1/2 ton truck (4X4 auto) that can be towed.  It has the right options for me and a few fu fu options like cloth seats and a nice radio.  It has a 390 HP engine with a 6 speed automatic.  It friggin moves out with that engine.  The old days are back with that horsepower. It has a tow package that includes a class IV hitch with wiring for a 7 point and a 4 point plug. It also has an extra transmission cooler plus extra engine cooling.  Also a trailer brake controller. It has other “stuff” too.  The sticker price with a couple of dealer options (tint, running boards (not installed yet)) was 31K.  I got it for $23.5 with Texas taxes paid ($1,500) out the door. Plus, 3.09% financing (72 months) with Chase thru the dealer. I think I got a damn good deal. I did a lot of research on the internet and knew what they could go for.  I had three other trucks to look at along with their internet price.  I let this dealer know that up front so as not to waste their or my time. They beat the best price I could find by about $1,000+.  The dealership is Larry Miller Dodge in Peoria (Phoenix).  It was the most pleasurable vehicle buying experience we’ve ever had and that’s saying a lot.

Carol made them throw in a set of door step bars at the last moment to close the deal.  We both have a very hard time getting into the truck with out them.  They will install them Saturday.

Now I have to arrange to get Demco tow base plates and a SMI AFO tow brake installed by someone.  I will try Redlands RV & Truck Service and see what kind of price  I can get.  They will be at the Gypsy Journal Rally in Yuma and I sent them an email.  Newt will be Southwest Driveline in Yuma and they are experts. We’ve had work done there several times.

The Razor ATV ramps to get it in the truck might not arrive here in Congress, AZ before we leave Sunday.  The truck can not be towed yet without the base plates.  Yes, Carol is keeping her Mercury Mariner. We will be going to Yuma for a week.  Then on to Hemet, CA for Carol’s line dancing rally for another week.  Then four days later we have Dr’s appointments in Texas.  Stay tuned.  This will be interesting.

See ya………

Monday, February 27, 2012

Another Day In The Desert

We’re ready to go at 10 PM.   Denny on the left. Then his son Shawn, then Steve, then me and all the way to the right is Walt.SDC12436 SDC12437


We take a little brake and enjoy the scenery. SDC12439


Yes we did…. Walt said it was a gopher snake.  I thought any snake with a diamond shape head was poisonous.  I haven’t seen any gopher holes out here.SDC12441


This is my ride…SDC12446

That white spot in the middle of the picture is North Ranch.

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Denny got cactus needles in his butt.  It was funny.  Basically he was hanging out his butt going down a steep hill and slanted.  He was hanging his butt out so as not to flip over while his son was driving.  Yes, this is a true story.  This was funny to everyone else.SDC12453

Three hours later we ended up at McDonalds for lunch.  SDC12455

We then returned back to North Ranch. I think we went out for 40 miles, maybe 30.

See ya…..

Sunday, February 26, 2012


The Daytona 500 NASCAR racing was cancelled until tomorrow (Monday).  Darn…

It was time to loosen up the suspension a little more on the Razor.  When I was done it was loose as a goose.  The rear was still very tight meaning that adjusting the springs on the rear shocks made little if any difference.  It’s stiff.  The front was very soft.  We went out for 20 miles today.  That’s my Razor on the right.  Then Ed’s Rhino and Walt’s ATV with him setting on it.  Steve’s Razor is behind Walt. SDC12433 It turned out that I could give it the gas and the front would really come up in the front then down when I let up on the gas and stepped on the brake.  It looked cool to me.  It turned out to be too much as I learned during the day.  It sat too low in the front for trail riding.  It made turning on tight turns difficult.  I only ran into one desert bush.  I also got stuck on a small boulder and tore off the right rear fender.  Good thing I had some bungee cords to hold it together.  It then had real character. I also went up a steep mound of dirt and got stuck on top like a teeter tot .  I had to back down that little hill.  When we got back Shawn, Denny’s son, fixed my fender.  Denny & I were his gophers.  Thanks Shawn.  Everyone agreed that bungee chords would be a good thing to carry.  We all decided to go out again tomorrow.

Carol walked our cat Rainbow.  Rainbow loves to go out and told me she doesn’t get to got out as much as she likes too.  I told her I would talk to the boss for her.SDC12431

See ya…………….

Saturday, February 25, 2012

A Little Of This & That

We started off the day by going to breakfast at the Country Kitchen.  They didn’t have waffles on the menu but Carol asked and they could make it happen and did.

We then went to the Dodge dealer to harass the sales people, my favorite pass time lately. In years pass they weren’t the easiest to deal with.  The tide has changed and it’s a buyer market.  Thus, my turn to harass them.  I would like a truck that can be towed and put my toys (Razor) in.  It’s a guy thing.  I haven’t had a pick up in over ten years.  Carol don’t agree in me getting a truck.   She will keep the Mariner Hybrid.

We got back to the Beast and it was time to do some work on the Razor.  First I washed it so we could find it.  I went over to Ed’s place.  Between Ed, Walt and myself we got the Razor door back aligned. I screwed up going thru a gate and almost tore the door off of it. Hey, Denny & his son rolled his new Razor over on it;s side so I don’t feel bad.  A large crow bar, a big hammer and a car jack and we were in business.  It reminded me of the three stooges.  We laughed and got it back in shape after about an hour.

Later we went over to Denny and Susie’s and had diner with other close friends.  It was fun.  We didn’t leave until 9 PM. That was unusual for all.

Tomorrow is Daytona 500 NASCAR time…

See ya

Friday, February 24, 2012

Not Today

Today was auction day at Prescott, AZ for a lot here at North Ranch. People call it he pink house lot.  The lady died two years ago and it’s been empty ever since.  Anyhow, the auction started off at $57K (us) and quickly moved to $69K.  We stopped and the Ponders got the lot. Good Luck…you got some work ahead of you..

That was the highlight of the day….

See  ya…..

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Here It Is

People have been asking for pictures of our new (used) Razor so here it is.  Mine is a 2008.  The Blue one is brand new (2012) and it’s Denny & Susie’s.  SDC12427 SDC12428 SDC12429

She’s pretty dirty but you get the jest of it.  The suspension is set up pretty harsh.  Ed, Walt & I adjusted it to where it is a lot softer.  I will adjust it again later on.  The terrain here is different than what it was set up for.  Walt, Denny & his son, and I went out today for about 30 miles in the desert today.  It was fun and we all got real dirty from following each other. You know when you use to go to the beach and get sand it places you didn’t know existed.  It’s the same with dirt/dust on these machines in the desert.  I had to take two showers today.  There goes my monthly allotment.

Later we made some adjustments to our schedule for the rest of the year for various reasons.  We didn’t like making the changes one bit but they had to be done for reasons due to family and medical.  Those are things that some full timers have to deal with on their terms accordingly. Family and health first.  We called our friends and coordinators and let them know what was going on.  We won’t be doing the east coast SKP rally in April in NC.  We won’t be doing the fall Escapade in September nor the Gypsy Journal Rally about then either.   We are also backing out of the Smart Weigh Program at this time.  Maybe in the future.  Our good friends in FL we won’t be able to make it to see you before your boat trip, really sorry.

From here we will go to the Gypsy Journal Rally. Then to Hemet for a Line Dancing Rally.  Then on to Livingston.  We’re not sure how long we will be there.  We would like to be gone before it gets hot and muggy hopefully.  Time will tell.

Tomorrow (Friday) is auction day.  The lot we have been chasing thru the auction process is going up for auction for sure (?).  If we get it – good.  If we don’t get it – it wasn’t meant to happen.  Their are other people that will be bidding on it we are pretty sure.  It ain’t going to go cheap!

So, that’s the number of that…….

See ya…..

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Gone Again - Kinda

What do I mean gone again kinda.  Ed hooked up his trailer to his Jeep and we were off to Joshua Tree a 250 mile one way trip.  It was a rush trip.  One stop for fuel and stop to eat each way.  When we got to Jean’s and Claudette’s we loaded up the Razor and returned to North Ranch.  We got back about 4:30 PM.  No pictures of the Razor yet.  I got extra stock parts with my Razor thanks to Jean & Claudette – thank you.  I in turn gave some to Denny for his new Razor.  One was a roof that went on top of his roll bar.  The other was part of the rear roll cage that made it complete in the rear of the Razor.  Denny & Susie’s Razor is “looking good”.  Several people came over to look at  our new used razor.  they were admiring all the extra options it had.  I will list later.  Carol & I jumped in it and went for a ride with Walt leading.  We went out for about about 7 miles in the desert.  The ride was very firm so I have to soften it up for this type of riding around here.  I will go extreme on lowering the dampening on the after market shocks and lower the air on the oversize tires to their minimum.  This should work.  If not, I might have to go back to the stock shocks for the time being.

I got my camera back from Ed.  I left it over  his place the other day.  Here are some pictures from a couple of days back.

TTN Thousand Trails Palm Springs.SDC12403

A little tight.SDC12404




This is the area that was jammed tight about 5 weeks ago with over 400 people at the SKP Quartzsite gathering.SDC12419 SDC12422


Here we are at North Ranch campground.SDC12425


Here we are at Ed & Sandy’s getting ready to graze over some food.SDC12426


And the adventure continues….

See ya………

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Gone Again

We got up with all the intentions of staying a few days.  By 10 AM we were on the road back to North Ranch, Congress, AZ.  There were a couple of reasons that I will get into tomorrow.

250 miles or so we arrived and are staying at the campground.  We don’t want to impose on anybody at this time.

We had dinner at Ed’s and Sandy’s place along with Denny and Susie and Walt & Kellie.  Kellie cooked up some real nice chicken and red taters.  Good memories were talked about by all.

Ed is picking me up at 6 AM tomorrow which is almost now as I type this.  We’re going to Joshua Tree to pick up my Razor from Jean & Claudette.  We bought it Monday.

See ya….

Monday, February 20, 2012

Good News, Bad News, Good News

Good News….I checked my email first thing this morning and I had one from Remco about the F350 truck towing.  They said that yes that it could be made to tow behind a motorhome.  Their web page was incorrect. Bad news…it takes about 6-8 weeks to make the parts.

I then went to the dealer to undo the deal due to the time it would take to make the truck towable.  I explained the situation and showed them the email.  Good news…they said OK and returned my check.  Wow, I’m not use to be treated so nice on an auto purchase deal especially in this type of deal.

We then packed up the Beast and left for TTN Palm Springs which is a 187 miles away.  Along the way…SDC12393 SDC12395

When we got to I-10 traffic was very heavy.  Carol reminded me it was President’s Day.SDC12399 

Carol said “NO!”  and I didn’t even ask.SDC12402

We arrived at TTN Palm Springs and got a pull thru 30 AMP FHU side.  We were lucky.  We got set up and headed for Joshua Tree to look at a Polaris Razor about 50 miles away.

We got to Jean and Claudett’s place.  They were part of the Loosey Goosey Gang to Alaska last year.  We took their 2008 Polaris Razor out for a short run.  It really looks tuff with it’s options.  Good news..we bought it.  Good news….earlier Ed & Walt offered to come and get it later this week and I will take them up on it. Thanks guys…

We returned to the Beast and finished hooking up the Beast.  We were beat and went to bed early.

See ya…..

Sunday, February 19, 2012


I went on line today and found out that the lot in Congress has been postponed (again) until Friday.  That works out for the time being.  It makes this Monday/Tuesday more workable.

I stayed in bed until 8 AM.  I’m starting to like this sleep in business..  8 AM is sleeping in for me.

I made some phone calls and did a little research on the internet about the F350 and towing it.  It appears that it can be as long as we don’t tow anything real heavy behind it with the Remco installed.  It can handle about 15K without the Remco kit.  With the kit installed I would probably never tow anything even half that weight.  If I need to, then a stock drive shaft would have to go back in.  I will cal Remco first thing Monday to see what they say of course.

We went for a little drive on London Bridge road near the lake/river.  No bigee to us.SDC12385

Then we came across a flea market.  You know one of those that is selling mostly new things from China and very little used stuff.  It took about an hour to walk around.  It was OK and it was on pavement and not dirt.  That was nice.SDC12386 

Here’s a picture of a truck we think is in our real price range with a little Enron financing.  The tan color matches our rig too.SDC12388

When we got back to the campground we jaw jacked with Jim a little while.  They are parked just one row over. Jim & Pat were among the Loosey Goosey Gang to Alaska last year.

For diner we went back to the China Buffett on London Bridge Road.  We met Sharon/Don, Pat/Jim and  Denny/Susie.  Carol Hinkley was a no show.  We jibber jabbered a lot and ate a lot.  Some where still planning to go to the fireworks again tonight – not us. The pic quality sucks.SDC12391

So that’s about it…..until tomorrow of course.  We will check on the truck situation, move 175 miles and check out Jean’s Polaris razors, both his new one and old one.

See ya…………

Saturday, February 18, 2012

And Today Started Out So Nice

As most full timers know we must be flexible or we would go crazy pretty dog on quick.  Take it in stride and all that BS…….Everyday Is An Adventure!  Sometimes more than others.  This was was one of those “other” days.

It started off with me staying in bed until almost 9 AM. That was a sign.  Then Carol fixed me breakfast.  Ok today was going to be a nice day.  Sun was out and it was expected to hit 70 degrees. We went to the local Ford dealership to see if we could get our car serviced.  Nope – have to schedule an appointment.  OK…We looked on their used vehicle lot for a truck we could pull behind the RV with a Polaris Razor side by side 4 wheeler.  I call them go carts on steroids.  Of course we lasted about 2 minutes on the lot before a salesperson preyed upon us. Bottom line and after a half hour they did not have anything for us.  I knew that after about 5 minutes but what the hell.

We left there and headed for some place to eat then Wal-Mart.  As we got close we saw a Dodge dealer that might have something we wanted.  We pulled in and right up to the sales office.  Before we could get out of the car we were approached.  Again nothing that we wanted.  Then the sales person said I might have something on the back lot that we just got in.  We looked and they had a 2006 Ford F350, not a dually, extended cab, 8 foot bed, diesel, automatic, AC, and cruise. Bingo….we haggled over price and agreed to buy if they would make it towable by installing a Remco driveshaft disconnect so to make it towable.  They said they were very familiar with the system and agreed to have it done and in writing OF COURSE! Done Deal.  I wrote the check and they kept the truck to have the work done early next week. 

We left and now it’s about 2-3 PM and it was time to eat lunch. Carol was starving and I was a little hungry.  We stopped at Mickey D’s and then went on to Wal-Mart to get groceries as planned earlier.  We met Don & Sharon there for a quick moment.  We’ve been trying to hook up with Denny & Susie but that never happened due to our side excursions.

We get back to the Beast and unload.  I call my brother in law Steven who says he will get the truck’s VIN checked out via his Ford source.  Great but it’s a done deal but OK.. Then out of the blue Pat  & Jim show up on our door step.  They are members of the Alaska Loosey Goosey Gang.  We will try and meet up with them tomorrow  They wanted to go on to the big fireworks display scheduled for tonight.

I went on line and went to Remco’s web page.  Bad news.  The F350 Ford truck does not have a driveshaft disconnect kit because it is not towable according to them the experts. Oh no Houston – we have a problem.  We just bought a truck and it can’t be towed.  Well, lessons learned my friends.  We had the dealer but it in writing as I said earlier that they would install a driveshaft disconnect kit.  The dealer was closed and they aren’t open on Sundays.  So Monday I will call Remco very early to double check that it is not towable.  Then I will be at the dealership when they open their doors to undo the deal.  I will also have the tele number to our bank to cancel the check if they don’t return it.

I don’t have to make trouble.  It finds me very easy. Will I get mad – no.  Will I use tact – yes until they say no.  I will then just walk away making sure they can hear my phone call to the bank.  Worse case I just cancel the check – no big deal, it really isn’t!

It’s just starting to get complicated.  Monday we are suppose to be in Palm Springs and will be.  We are going there to buy a Polaris Razor from our friends Jean & Claudette. They are Loosey Goosey Gang members also. They just got a new Razor and are willing to sell their 2008 to us.  Great……

Monday is also the day we find out if the lot in Congress is going up for auction on Tuesday in Prescott.  If it is, we will be there.  This jello schedule is starting to get real tight now, isn’t it?

Now it’s getting towards evening so we depart for the big fireworks display.  We get there and they are full. Oppps.  Carol really wanted to see them.  We turn around and find a place to park in a nearby bank’s lot. It too was pretty full.  We are watching the fireworks and the large truck next to us moved to in front us and blocked our view along with others.  I went and told them thanks…yes I did…they left about 15 minutes later. They had an excellent spot next to us…why move?  We left about 8:45 PM and headed back to the Beast. 

We get back home and we get a call from our daughter.  She just got her college graduation date.  She’s on one of those accelerated programs so the normal college dates don’t apply.  She graduates in mid September (14th) in California.  Oh no…..what about the Gypsy Journal and the Escapade in September back east?  We have obligations at both.   Well folks, family first……..

So, how was your day?

See ya…………..

Friday, February 17, 2012

The Big Bang

We left North Ranch (Congress) at about 8:30 AM and drove the 158 miles to Lake Havasu, AZ.  We had reservations at a Coast To Coast park called Lake Havasu RV Resort. It’s $10 a night for 30 AMP full hook up.SDC12381

Our cat Rainbow settled in real quick.SDC12382

En route pictures…..SDC12353

There’s Indian’s in them there hillsSDC12354


Denny & Susie are ahead of us.SDC12358

It speaks for itself…..SDC12359


Just another one of Patton’s tanks in Bouse, AZSDC12368


It was a nice little drive and traffic was a little on the heavy side.

We went to the fairgrounds that night for the 22nd annual pyrotechnic fireworks display.  We saw Cool Judy and her friends real quick when we arrived.  They start the big show about 8 PM and it last just under an hour.  Let me tell you something.  If you are into seeing this kind of stuff.  This is the place to come. We were setting about 40 yards right in the middle front from where they lit these tubes off.  There were some loud bangs too!  Car alarms were going off like crazy. We were all amazed of the show.  It’s the best we have ever seen.  We’ve seen the DC show, the Baltimore Inner Harbor Show and they were great.  But they take second place to this show.  This is worth going out of your way to see.  They will have a bigger show Saturday and then an another show Sunday.  If you are nearby come on out NOW.  Plenty of boone docking or $25 at the Sara Event Show grounds (fairgrounds).  Local RV parks are full.

See ya……