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Old 06-26-2011, 09:15 PM
 
Location: Wyoming
9,168 posts, read 16,519,971 times
Reputation: 13364

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Quote:
Originally Posted by scratchNsniff View Post
... I'm thinking about just doing what I've always wanted to do and buying a smaller used C Class RV, towing my car behind me and getting out of the southwest. And hopefully on my way from San Diego to Oregon, I find a place I like and settle down.

Will it be fun? Safe? Should I buy a gun too? Is this the best way to go about picking up roots and moving to a new place? Will I meet nice people? Do I need a 2nd person to hook up and unhook my car? Can I resell the RV once I get there? Any tips or reality checks would be helpful, thanks!!
Towing your car could get to be a pain in the patoot. It could be done if you have the right car, but hooking and unhooking would be a bit of a chore, and you can't back those things up with a car in tow at all. Hooking up isn't necessarily a two-person job; it just makes it easier. I'd consider selling the car and just getting a class C that's small enough to drive through town and can be parked in most parking lots.

It's fun for most people who do it.

Campgrounds are generally pretty safe places. I'd not recommend a gun unless you're an experienced law enforcement officer. Get a can of mace or something similar if anything. It's less apt to get you killed.

Of course you can sell it, but probably not for what you paid for it. Buy a good used one at the right price, and you may get back close to what you paid for it. I wouldn't buy new. And I'd pay an expert to inspect a used one -- maybe even two experts: an RV tech and a mechanic.

Renting one for a month makes sense until you price the cost of renting. It's expensive!

Most full-time RVers will say the lifestyle costs about as much as living in a stick & brick home. It varies widely from individual to individual. If you boondock or camp at forest service campgrounds, eat in, don't drive too much and watch your spending closely, you can get by pretty inexpensively. If you stay in commercial campgrounds, move regularly from place-to-place, dine out, etc., etc., it'll be very costly.

We meet some very nice folks while camping.

Check out RV.net and Escapees. RV.net is the largest online board for RVers, and Escapees is an organization for full-time RVers.
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Old 07-20-2011, 06:18 AM
 
26 posts, read 47,766 times
Reputation: 50
Yeah, definitely do it, oh and sorry about the brain thing, but anyway yeah I can say that
my sister packed up from houston, with her 17 year old son, bought a 1986 chevy school bus and they
did just that. Fixed the bus up, (took seats out, put beds in and rolled), as the planning was going on, part of me was thinking, are they nuts?, but supported her. Fast forward through alot of interesting adventures on the road,
(keep in mind this was bareboans living on a dime), well the last I talked to her a week ago she made it to Northern Calif, where she found a town that was very homeless friendly. She has actually been there 6 months,
got a job, living in an rv site, with cable, internet (she doesnt use it though), a mile from the coast. She told me
if her life was to end today, it would be ok cause she is finally happy. So yea do it, and Im gonna do it to with my 3cats, hell we should all do it
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Old 07-24-2011, 10:54 AM
 
47,576 posts, read 58,711,508 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scratchNsniff View Post
I'm 33, female, and have nobody else but me and my cat. I've always wanted to live a nomadic life going from place to place and meeting new people, experiencing new things. I've been pretty nomadic my whole life, going back and forth between AZ and CA and not being entirely happy in either place. I like California but it's so expensive and I've gotten tired of the rat race. I used to be a fun quirky gal but California has taken it all out of me and left me angry and depressed. And AZ is too hot and right-wing for my tastes.

So due to recent life circumstances, like brain surgery and losing a job, I'm thinking about just doing what I've always wanted to do and buying a smaller used C Class RV, towing my car behind me and getting out of the southwest. And hopefully on my way from San Diego to Oregon, I find a place I like and settle down.

Will it be fun? Safe? Should I buy a gun too? Is this the best way to go about picking up roots and moving to a new place? Will I meet nice people? Do I need a 2nd person to hook up and unhook my car? Can I resell the RV once I get there? Any tips or reality checks would be helpful, thanks!!
It sounds like fun.

Instead of towing a car, you could get a travel trailer and instead. Those are very easy to hook up and unhook.

Yes it would be as safe as anything else is. It might not hurt to have a gun if you travel alone at night.
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Old 07-28-2011, 03:18 PM
 
Location: Wandering in the West
818 posts, read 1,888,065 times
Reputation: 894
Just make sure the gun is legal where you travel. There's some jurisdictions that consider your RV to be your home and some that will consider it a vehicle. Makes a big difference, if you ever get charged for carrying it.

My husband and I have been living in our 5th wheel for about a month now and it sure beats staying in motels. I think it would be even more fun if we had a travel trailer or Class C, so we could get into national forest spots. DH insisted on a 33' 5th wheel and the thing is just too tall to get into the forests and state parks around here. But it's not bad anyway, we've had good park neighbors so far.
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Old 07-29-2011, 12:42 AM
 
Location: Iowa
406 posts, read 1,032,186 times
Reputation: 478
Get a Utah and Florida Gun permit and enjoy the freedom of being able to travel to any free state in the country.. Avoid California and NE States which prohibit carrying of guns without local permits. A single woman travelling alone should certainly carry a gun and train how to use it. Considering that an RV is consider a residence once parked at an RV park or campground, you can actually have a loaded shotgun/rifle next to your bed in the RV and it will be considered legal, even in California. If you are to carry a gun with you, it must be with one of the two permits mentioned in one of the many legal states.

If you do decide to come to Oregon and carry a gun, you will need to make Oregon your home state. You will have to somehow find a residence in the state, before applying for a permit. I don't know how RV people do this. Oregon does not recognize Utah or FL permits, but WA, ID and Montana do.

I live in Oregon ,it's a beautiful state.. Hope you like rain.. It does make the mountains very green.. Lots of trees.

I am a 33 year old guy with a similar mindset to you and I am thinking about a part-time RV lifestyle, but would just love to do it full-time, in between trips to Europe and exotic tropical islands.. Ah well... Maybe one day..
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Old 07-29-2011, 03:06 AM
 
33,142 posts, read 39,090,825 times
Reputation: 28508
Renting should always be a first option if going full time is a consideration. discovering the cramped smallness of the living unit may not be what you thought, if much traveling around is part of the dream will those $300 ($4gal) gas fill ups every 500 miles become a financial burden.
Doing research on items that will require maintenance will be enlightening such as cost of various engine parts ,tires etc.
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Old 08-04-2011, 03:53 PM
 
Location: where the moss is taking over the villages
2,178 posts, read 4,711,294 times
Reputation: 1229
Quote:
Originally Posted by jambo101 View Post
Renting should always be a first option if going full time is a consideration. discovering the cramped smallness of the living unit may not be what you thought, if much traveling around is part of the dream will those $300 ($4gal) gas fill ups every 500 miles become a financial burden.
Doing research on items that will require maintenance will be enlightening such as cost of various engine parts ,tires etc.
I agree about the cramped aspect. In my hypothetical considerations for future full time rv life... I think I'll have outposts where I can stash things & wash up. Hygeine & storage are the two biggest problems I can foresee.

My daughter agrees (when she has her own place) to let me, for a small amount of money, store things with her & use the facilities for laundry & showering. If my boyfriend joins me in my hypothetical future adventure, then we can also utilize his mother's generousity.

Besides storage & hygeine: cooking seems to be problematic. I don't really want to sleep in my kitchen every night. So if I can cook up entrees ahead of time at an "outpost" - then I can eat it throughout the week. Cook & do laundry at the outposts. Maybe leave pre-cooked food in the freezer at the outpost for future use.

For now, I'm stuck with my current circumstances: $850 rent & about $150/month for phone/utilities. My vehicle is roadworthy but pretty worthless as a trade in. I have no cash for an extra vehicle. A trailer is less stealthy than a van & a motor home seems to have less resale value than a van, in my observation.

My hope to acquire a van & convert it myself or at least modify a converted van - as long as the mileage isn't much worse than what I'm accustomed to (12-18 mpg). At minimum, I need a good stealth camper van for work related travel. When I have an hour commute, it would be nice to sleep nearby to return the next day. Even though I get paid mileage, I'd rather not spend all that time commuting.

As for RV spots at state parks, those seem to be a minimum of $20/night. Not the bargain I anticipated.
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Old 08-14-2011, 05:33 PM
 
Location: Georgia
238 posts, read 547,952 times
Reputation: 141
Ahhhh.... Sarahkate, what you said!!

I looked up loads of information about taking a van and converting it myself (well me and a partner since I can't lift everything by myself). I looked up loads of info: where to park at nights, solar energy for things like lap top..., how to have a minor shower system, how to keep condensation from building up inside the walls of the van... and how to stay clean if I don't set up a showering system.

I can see how it could be pretty rough on some types of people, and how they'd feel like they were traveling in a small box and never feeling like they are able to stretch, or be grounded, or feel rested. Maybe I would feel that way after a while, but for a long while, the benefit of going toward a new horizon, seeing parts of the US I've never seen, go up in some mountaints, head to an ocean on a whim,... That would do me a load of good. I want to be in solitude for a bit, be around some animal life, hear sounds of nature, and be spontaneous, drive towards a horizon not always knowing what I'll find when I get there.

The rat race... is not what life was meant to be. I need to feel something more for awhile.
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Old 08-17-2011, 03:47 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
20,794 posts, read 37,464,612 times
Reputation: 20854
Use a 'motor-aide' or equivalent vehicle assist water heater (con make your own for $100). Then create an 'outdoor' shower (small tank + pump or gravity feed). I Love my outdoor shower. (no mess / moisture inside)

I also make a habit to 'lap swim' nearly daily if possible. That takes care of the shower issue. (Schools, YMCA, Community / senior centers, colleges ...)

I also stop by public campgrounds during the day and take showers. Many National / State Parks have showers for hikers / bikers you can 'rent' ~ $4. I have cleaned way too many musty Rentals / RVs to ever use / create an indoor shower.

I am creating 'retreat' centers for me across USA that will have RV hook-ups with shop / apartment / shower / laundry / community kitchen + 4-5 RV sites. The joint will be rented out and self sufficient, and I will use when in the area. Otherwise I will be getting $750/ month for home + $300 / month each for a few RV sites.
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Old 08-17-2011, 08:20 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
20,794 posts, read 37,464,612 times
Reputation: 20854
Quote:
Originally Posted by jambo101 View Post
Renting should always be a first option if going full time is a consideration. discovering the cramped smallness of the living unit may not be what you thought, if much traveling around is part of the dream will those $300 ($4gal) gas fill ups every 500 miles become a financial burden.
BTW...
I do most of my "RVing" with a 50+mpg diesel VW Passat Station Wagon (I am making a 'teardrop' type trailer that will still allow 42-45 MPG). It goes 1200 miles on a 25 gal fill-up ($100 or <$0.10 / mile). It will run fine on many types of 'free-fuel'; waste cooking oil, veggie oil, jetA (free from airport maint hangar)

In a pinch, I have my 20 mpg class C Motorhome Rialta Heaven - Welcome - Rialta Eurovan Camper, VW Rialta Camper, Used Camper Van
(currently gas powered )
and use Free Campgrounds for RVs

I have a good friend that makes 35 mpg diesel VW westys, I will eventually make one of those too. (Or import one from Canada, I have seen (2) of those in USA, but they were kinda spendy for a camper van ($18,000).

The used Spinter conversions go for the $40k price range, (too rich for my blood).(Sprinter Vans get 22-24 mpg).

You can often find a Diesel Ford van or converted Ambulance, but they only get 18 mpg. or ~$0.30 / mile for fuel.

The other option is to find a used sprinter class C, they also get ~ 18 mpg

Quote:
Doing research on items that will require maintenance will be enlightening such as cost of various engine parts ,tires etc.
I am a 'diesel head', and will have no other way, since I was weaned on the smoke stake of a tractor and need a snort of unburnt diesel to get going everyday. (I don't do coffee, BIG savings ;0)

You can easily get 500,000 trouble free miles on most diesels, 1,000,000+ on my favorite 12v Cummins. Just need a 'fleetguard' filter kit every yr or 20,000 miles (Can get @ Napa once / month 'filter days' for ~ $25) and use a GOOD synthetic oil. (I use Amsoil). I have over 3 million 'fleet miles' on my rigs, never had a major engine failure. And NEVER BEEN TOWED.

Tires... 5-7 yr max on rubber ~ $100 each for vans, $200 each (x6) for medium RVS. $400-$500 each tire for the big boys (x6 to 10)

RV appliance repairs are quite expensive to fix / replace, consider converting to more traditional ones if you are gonna keep something long term. OR become an RV mechanic (very good paying job).

RV's can be very poor on resale. Basically buy to keep, or pay dearly for high quality used and take forever to resell. It is quite reasonable to spend $3500 - $5000 for a used trailer, then 'throw-it-away'. (or leave it at one of mine (or yours) future 'destination' RV parks for $200 -$300 / month. Each RV park will be within 1 hr of major (CHEAP) airport and will have a cost basis under $20k/site.

As frequent readers know, my first and primary mode of travel is car or fly/drive and using $10-$20 / NIGHT private guest homes. Wonderful worldwide experiences for over 25 yrs. (over 12 nights in guesthomes during August 2011), It is a blast. YMMV. My last rental car cost $4.95/day with unlimited mileage (I did over 3500 miles). It got 38 mpg. < $0.15 / mile
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