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Old 05-27-2016, 03:11 PM   #1
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Our First trip with our Shamrock 233s

After reading all the other first outing posts put up the last several days, I decided to review our own first trip out.

We went out on our first trip in our new Shamrock 233s just this past Thursday. We had just picked it up from the dealership on Monday the 16th, and had 2 days to pack before we left. We were traveling to North Dakota to attend a wedding being held at Lake Metigoshe, just south of the Canadian boarder. There isn't a whole lot of lodging up that way, only 2 motels remotely close by and both were booked solid that whole weekend. The only openings we found were in Minot, about an hour away. So instead we opted to take the camper and stay right on the lake. We traveled straight north from Waterloo, IA to Minneapolis, then headed west through Fargo, Grand Forks, and then to our final destination Lake Metigoshe just outside of this little town called Bottineau, North Dakota. In all it was 11 hours of driving, but with 3 kids in tow (9, 2, and 9 months) we had to make several stops along the way. Normally id like to break a drive up that long into at least 2 days but with our time constraints we had to power straight through. We left at 5:30 am Thursday morning and arrived at the lake at 9:30 pm that night, only stopping for gas, diaper changes and 2 meals. That's not a drive I'd soon like to repeat, but in all it went well. It was uneventful up until we passed through Minneapolis and started west. The Ram was chugging along as if the trailer wasn't even there. We were averaging about 8.5-9.5 MPG, about what I expected. We hit a pretty strong headwind when we started west and the truck started to struggle a little bit. The MPG also dipped down to about the 5-6 range. I was holding 65 most of the trip but had to slow it down to 60 heading west.

When we arrived, It took a little longer than expected to set up because the site I reserved had a good slope to it and I couldn't get the camper level. I put every piece of cribbing I brought under the tongue and ran it all the way up and still needed about 6 more inches to get leveled out. We slept in it that night, pitched forward until the next day when I could run to a near by lumber yard to pick up one of those Handi-block patio support blocks. That and a 4X4 and we got level.

The 233s was awesome. We were very comfortable. I got a chance to try out just about everything but the furnace and AC. We had mild temps up there, too much for AC, not enough to justify firing up the furnace. We did try out the heated mattresses though, and my wife and I are both fans. Even managed to pick u up 11 on air tv channels out in the middle of no where. I did have trouble firing up the water heater on electric, so I ran it off of propane. When I got to looking into the issue when we got back I found some posts saying there was a second switch on the water heater itself? If that's the case, that would explain why it wouldn't work. I'll have to verify that next time I pull the camper out of storage.

The drive back was more of the same. Crammed all into Sunday so we could get the boy back on time for school Monday morning. He's already missed too much this year. The wife and I both had the day off. I thought we'd at least have a decent drive back but the wind seemed to not only change directions, but increased in intensity. Again we struggled driving east through a strong head wind. This time, I got in behind a semi trailer and drafted him all the way to Minneapolis. That seemed to help a lot with the wind, and after heading south it died down all together and except for the stand still traffic just outside of Alexandria, MN it was smooth sailing all the way home.

I couldn't be happier with the camper. Aside from the speaker wiring problem that seems to be common (which I didn't even notice), and tripping a breaker while cooking with an electric skillet and brewing coffee at the same time, the only other issue we have seems to be the entry door. It opens hard. The lever seems to stick. You have to pull on it pretty hard to unlatch it and open the door. This too I did not notice, but Im a bigger guy with man hands and it's not much of an issue for me. My wife struggles with it, and my kids cant open the door at all, one of us has to let them in. I did adjust the catch on the door frame out as far as it would go and this seemed to help, but not totally resolve the issue. Im going to look into it a little more when I get an opportunity. The screen door also seems to be off somewhat. It swings freely until its within about 6" of being closed then it seems to bind and you have to push it the rest of the way closed. The catch also seems to small for the latch on the screen door as it barely catches it. Is this normal for these doors? I can hit the locking mechanism with some graphite and see if that helps. As for the screen door, Im pretty sure I can tweak the aluminum hinges just enough to eliminate the bind, and shim the catch out.

We're thinking we're going to hit up the Omaha zoo in June for a long weekend. Until then, we'll be counting the days.
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Old 05-27-2016, 03:16 PM   #2
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Awesome info. I have been looking at getting a new truck and the Dodge Ram 1500 was one on my list. Good to know it handles the 233s just fine Hope you continue to enjoy the trailer. I do mine!
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Old 05-27-2016, 06:26 PM   #3
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Congrats on surviving first trip syndrome. We've had plenty of issues but none with the door.

Happy Camping!
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Old 05-28-2016, 04:35 AM   #4
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Lube the door latch, it worked for mine, night and day difference
Enjoy!
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Old 05-28-2016, 03:12 PM   #5
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A couple of things we did to our 233s is add the bar to the inside of the screen door. Changed the shower head and because we have a little dog, we put a piece of plexi glass in the bottom of the screen door so she can't push on the screen. HAPPY CAMPING
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Old 05-28-2016, 11:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Finster View Post
After reading all the other first outing posts put up the last several days, I decided to review our own first trip out.

We went out on our first trip in our new Shamrock 233s just this past Thursday. We had just picked it up from the dealership on Monday the 16th, and had 2 days to pack before we left. We were traveling to North Dakota to attend a wedding being held at Lake Metigoshe, just south of the Canadian boarder. There isn't a whole lot of lodging up that way, only 2 motels remotely close by and both were booked solid that whole weekend. The only openings we found were in Minot, about an hour away. So instead we opted to take the camper and stay right on the lake. We traveled straight north from Waterloo, IA to Minneapolis, then headed west through Fargo, Grand Forks, and then to our final destination Lake Metigoshe just outside of this little town called Bottineau, North Dakota. In all it was 11 hours of driving, but with 3 kids in tow (9, 2, and 9 months) we had to make several stops along the way. Normally id like to break a drive up that long into at least 2 days but with our time constraints we had to power straight through. We left at 5:30 am Thursday morning and arrived at the lake at 9:30 pm that night, only stopping for gas, diaper changes and 2 meals. That's not a drive I'd soon like to repeat, but in all it went well. It was uneventful up until we passed through Minneapolis and started west. The Ram was chugging along as if the trailer wasn't even there. We were averaging about 8.5-9.5 MPG, about what I expected. We hit a pretty strong headwind when we started west and the truck started to struggle a little bit. The MPG also dipped down to about the 5-6 range. I was holding 65 most of the trip but had to slow it down to 60 heading west.

When we arrived, It took a little longer than expected to set up because the site I reserved had a good slope to it and I couldn't get the camper level. I put every piece of cribbing I brought under the tongue and ran it all the way up and still needed about 6 more inches to get leveled out. We slept in it that night, pitched forward until the next day when I could run to a near by lumber yard to pick up one of those Handi-block patio support blocks. That and a 4X4 and we got level.

The 233s was awesome. We were very comfortable. I got a chance to try out just about everything but the furnace and AC. We had mild temps up there, too much for AC, not enough to justify firing up the furnace. We did try out the heated mattresses though, and my wife and I are both fans. Even managed to pick u up 11 on air tv channels out in the middle of no where. I did have trouble firing up the water heater on electric, so I ran it off of propane. When I got to looking into the issue when we got back I found some posts saying there was a second switch on the water heater itself? If that's the case, that would explain why it wouldn't work. I'll have to verify that next time I pull the camper out of storage.

The drive back was more of the same. Crammed all into Sunday so we could get the boy back on time for school Monday morning. He's already missed too much this year. The wife and I both had the day off. I thought we'd at least have a decent drive back but the wind seemed to not only change directions, but increased in intensity. Again we struggled driving east through a strong head wind. This time, I got in behind a semi trailer and drafted him all the way to Minneapolis. That seemed to help a lot with the wind, and after heading south it died down all together and except for the stand still traffic just outside of Alexandria, MN it was smooth sailing all the way home.

I couldn't be happier with the camper. Aside from the speaker wiring problem that seems to be common (which I didn't even notice), and tripping a breaker while cooking with an electric skillet and brewing coffee at the same time, the only other issue we have seems to be the entry door. It opens hard. The lever seems to stick. You have to pull on it pretty hard to unlatch it and open the door. This too I did not notice, but Im a bigger guy with man hands and it's not much of an issue for me. My wife struggles with it, and my kids cant open the door at all, one of us has to let them in. I did adjust the catch on the door frame out as far as it would go and this seemed to help, but not totally resolve the issue. Im going to look into it a little more when I get an opportunity. The screen door also seems to be off somewhat. It swings freely until its within about 6" of being closed then it seems to bind and you have to push it the rest of the way closed. The catch also seems to small for the latch on the screen door as it barely catches it. Is this normal for these doors? I can hit the locking mechanism with some graphite and see if that helps. As for the screen door, Im pretty sure I can tweak the aluminum hinges just enough to eliminate the bind, and shim the catch out.

We're thinking we're going to hit up the Omaha zoo in June for a long weekend. Until then, we'll be counting the days.
Glad you like your camper and you had a safe trip! We have a new 2016 Roo 21SS and went to Tennessee, Land Between the Lakes at the end of April from the Milwaukee area. Got about the same gas millage and slowing down does help that. Yes there is a switch on the water heater outside. We had our camper about a month before we tried it out. Decided to sleep in it one night in the driveway. It got down into the upper 30's that night, but the furnace and heated mattress did a nice job keeping us warm until I woke up about 4 am and it very cold in the camper. The furnace stopped working. I turned it off and back on, and the fan turned on and then turn off again. Thought maybe I was out of propane but was not going to check on it then and went in the house to bed. Checked on the propane the next morning and had plenty! Tried furnace again, but same result. Took the camper to the dealer and they determined that the furnace "high limit switch" had failed! they had the part and replaced it and all was good. My next problem was when I dewinterized and sanatized the fresh water tank and lines. That all went well and ran the pump to flush everything out. The next day I filled up the fresh water tank and tried the pump and I could hear it running, but no water was coming out at any of the faucets. Back to the dealer the next day. The problem was caused by a kinked hose from the filter that made too sharp of a bend around a corner near the hot water heater. They cut the hose at the corner and put in a metal 90 degree elbow and two clamps and problem fixed.
Other than those two things all is good and we like the camper a lot! I'm glad we had time to try everythig out before a big trip.
Heading to one of the Wisconsin state parks Monday afternoon when everyone else is headed home form the Memoril Day Holiday!
I'm orginally from Council Bluffs, so from one Iowa guy to another, Go Hawks!!!
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Old 05-29-2016, 06:50 AM   #7
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Finster, that was one ambitious first trip! Glad it went well for you. Your mileage is right in line with most people reporting here. My Ram 1500 / 23IKSS combo averages 9...10 in mostly flat Indiana. Good luck in future outings.
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