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Old 10-11-2015, 10:52 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevejahr View Post
But since you asked we have a new 2016 Rockwood 2604WS.

Thanks for the ideas.
Ours is a 2015 2604WS Emerald edition.
The layout has so far been great for my wife and me.
We're hoping to occasionally put up grandkids on the pullout couch.

Knowing that you have essentially the same trailer as us, here are a few more suggestions:

-Did I previously say tires? We had a tire failure on Monarch Pass. Looking at the tires, I found that our 7714lb GVWR is being carried on off-brand Chinese tires with a 7040lb total payload capacity. With 714lbs tongue weight, 7000lbs could be riding on the tires. There's a high likelihood that this weight isn't spread evenly on the tires for a variety of reasons. Also, using my engineering skills, I figured out that each time I take a turn at advised speed (yellow speed limit sign at curves) the outside tires likely get overloaded by about 350lbs with an otherwise properly loaded trailer. I changed from Constancy ST205/75R14 LRC to Kumho 857 205/75R14 LRD. Kumho is a reputable manufacturer (sold by Sears and Discount Tire) and the new tires have a load rating of 2270lbs vs 1760lbs.

-Add a second light in the bathroom near the closet. We only had one, and it's not enough.

-Figure out a way to lock the pullout couch closed. I put a strap around the mechanism. Otherwise it opens in transit.

-Figure out a place to store the small table and lamp that isn't in the nook to the left of the big slide out. We had to replace the slide out trim because the table got trapped behind the trim as the slide out was moving. I've been putting the table in the bedroom near the door.

-Put old towels or some other protection between the rear chairs and the straps that secure them in transit. We've got black marks on the chairs from the black straps.

-Get some black rustoleum paint and brush the welds along the frame on the outside. Ours was delivered in March and had been towed from the factory on salty roads so it started to show rust a little early. I'm planning to repaint as much of the exposed steel as possible in the near future to stop all rust in its tracks.

-Figure out how you're going to jack the trailer if you have a flat, and do a trial run. On our trailer, the underside is fully boxed in so there is no access to the frame in front or behind the wheels. You're not supposed to jack on the axles according to Dexter (the factory apparently does anyway). I found that a bottle jack of the right size just fits between the two wheels where you can jack on the sub-frame for the axles. I made a 2" x 6" x 3/8" steel block (4ft lengths sold at HD or Lowes) to insert between jack and frame to spread the forces and prevent bending of the frame. You need a pretty good lift range on the jack, so not all bottle jacks will work well. I got a Strongway 12T with 9" to 18" lift range from Amazon.

-Also, the nuts are different for the spare and for the wheels. Make sure you have wrenches to fit both.

-Check the shower for leaks before your first trip. Ours was not caulked properly at the factory. External caulking doesn't solve the problem. The dealer had to disassemble and reassemble the shower to fix it.

-Eyeball the battens that hold the bottom cover on the trailer, also the strap that holds the black and gray drain to the frame. All are secured with self drilling screws that are a little on the wimpy side. The heads break off easily. I've drilled out and replaced three screws because the heads had snapped off.

-Propane bottles, batteries, and spare tire are all easy theft targets. If you store in a location that isn't well lit, fenced, and monitored, put locks on all.

-Check that the nylock bolts securing the stabilizer jacks are all tight. We towed our trailer home and then discovered that three of four bolts at one corner were missing, and the fourth was hanging on by a couple of threads. I figure lunch break must have occurred at the factory after only three corners had been tightened.
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Old 10-11-2015, 11:36 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevejahr View Post
But since you asked we have a new 2016 Rockwood 2604WS.
Oh, and one more mistake that I made....

Double check the payload capacity of your tow vehicle.

I had purchased a 2015 Tundra Platinum thinking that it'd have no problem towing an ultralite. I even asked the dealer to verify the payload capacity of the truck I was purchasing. Unfortunately, he responded with the advertised payload and not the payload for my vehicle which can be lower. It turned out when I weighed my new truck, it didn't have sufficient residual payload capacity to handle the 2604WS. I now have a 2015 F-150.

Add up all the weights on the tongue: dry weight(714lbs), batteries (50lbs), propane (110lbs), full fresh water tank (about 150lbs on the tongue when you need to haul a full tank.... total fresh water is 36gallons/300lbs located half way between hitch and axles), cargo (12% to 15% of total if evenly loaded), and a full water heater (6 gal/50lbs, reduced by 20% because it's a little ways back from the hitch).

Then add the weight of the hitch. Mine is an Equalizer 12K and weighs about 100lbs.

Then add the weights of the passengers in your tow vehicle and any cargo and non-factory installed accessories (like a bed cover) in the tow vehicle.

The total is the load carried by your tow vehicle. In my case it comes to about 1530lbs.

Then check the cargo capacity of your specific tow vehicle. Do not use vehicle specs from the web for this, since they are generic and won't apply to your vehicle. Look for a ratings sticker on the driver side door jamb. The value for Passengers Plus Cargo in most cases is your payload capacity.
Payload capacity should be more than the total load you calculated.

In my case, my Tundra Platinum had a payload capacity of about 1300lbs, so it couldn't handle the 1530lbs I need.
2014 F-150 Lariat's that I shopped had a similar problem.
My 2015 F-150 has a payload capacity of 1723lbs thanks to the aluminum body, so it's good to go.
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Old 10-11-2015, 07:20 PM   #23
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Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Wisconsin/Florida
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First Mods on our RV

We recently purchased a Class C and made several mods.

1. Roof vent covers-when we left a vent open and got moisture on the mattress plastic covers, we installed three MaxAir II vent covers. Now we can leave the vents open without any surprises.
2. Replaced the dome light with an LED fixture and changed out all of the incandescent bulbs with LED bulbs-all for under $50.
2. Cupboard dividers of 1/8th plywood and finished to match the cabinets.
3. Back splash behind the stove.
4. Hooks for fly swatters and keys,pockets for the TV remotes, etc.
5. installed a BR Tv with concealed wiring.
6. Adequate folding step pad for easier entry.
7. Winterizing mod at the water pump
8. The most important. Undercoated all of the bare structural metal underneath the unit and sprayed Rustoleum bed liner application on the hitch, frame, etc.
9. Organized a basic tool box of screw drivers, wrenches, hammer, etc..
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Old 10-11-2015, 07:55 PM   #24
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X2 on the undercarriage paint... I used a rubberized undercarriage spray paint you find at the auto stores.. I used about 3 or 4 cans and also put mud flaps after the last wheel to cut down on flinging mud onto the TT

I also used plastic Protective Wire Wrap (available from Harbor Freight), and covered all of the exposed brake and trailer light wires that hung loose from the frame/axel and nylon tied them tight to the frame... I figured if I drove over a muffler on the road or something it might snag one of those wires and rip something or break the wire somewhere underneath where I would not see it.
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Old 10-11-2015, 10:04 PM   #25
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X2 on the undercarriage paint... I used a rubberized undercarriage spray paint you find at the auto stores.. I used about 3 or 4 cans and also put mud flaps after the last wheel to cut down on flinging mud onto the TT

I also used plastic Protective Wire Wrap (available from Harbor Freight), and covered all of the exposed brake and trailer light wires that hung loose from the frame/axel and nylon tied them tight to the frame... I figured if I drove over a muffler on the road or something it might snag one of those wires and rip something or break the wire somewhere underneath where I would not see it.
I like this! I was worried about spraying the undercarriage area because I don't want to muck up the wires. If I put them in plastic cable armor first, the wires are protected from my spray and also from debris on the street.

Good plan!!
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Old 10-11-2015, 10:56 PM   #26
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It took me I think two packs of the small size loom and 1 or 2 packs of the middle size plastic loom to do the best job of covering all of the wires, front to back and side to side (brake wires). There are three sizes and I had some of each but I don't think I used the large at all. Get some nylon ties also to secure the ends of the loom and to secure the wrapped wires to the frame.

Then have fun camping!
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Old 10-12-2015, 05:00 AM   #27
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Change lights to LED to save battery while boonedocking. Added 280w solar, various 12v DC outlets, remote fridge temp monitor, fan in roof vent, electric tongue jack.
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Old 10-12-2015, 07:09 AM   #28
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Just a few of the inexpensive, simple mods we did to our screen / entry door.

We swapped out the cheap plastic assembly that came on the rig with these stainless steel ones. Entry door and our cargo door.
Amazon.com: RV Designer Collection E226 6 Inch Stainless Steel "T" Self Closing Entry Door Holder: Automotive

Replaced the white plactic insert in the screen door with this clear one;
Amazon.com: Camco 45591 Screen Door Slide Set (12" x 28", Clear): Automotive

Added this latch release so the screen could be opened with opening the plastic slide;
http://www.amazon.com/Camco-43953-Sc...+return+spring

Added this "push bar" to keep the grandkids from pushing the screen out;
Amazon.com: Camco 42183 Screen Door Cross Bar (Black): Automotive

And this return spring kit, so the screen will close on its own;
Amazon.com: Camco 44133 Screen Door Closure Kit: Automotive

Then used masking tape to outline caulk lines, and used clear silicone caulk to "glue" the plastic panels of the screen door in place. I realized the reason the screen was so noisy when it closed was the plastic inserts were loose and would rattle when the door closed. The silicone quieted that down considerably.

Nothing earth shattering, just small simple stuff, to make the camping more enjoyable.
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Old 10-12-2015, 11:01 AM   #29
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Undercarriage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gyrogearloose View Post
Ours is a 2015 2604WS Emerald edition.
The layout has so far been great for my wife and me.
We're hoping to occasionally put up grandkids on the pullout couch.

Knowing that you have essentially the same trailer as us, here are a few more suggestions:

-Did I previously say tires? We had a tire failure on Monarch Pass. Looking at the tires, I found that our 7714lb GVWR is being carried on off-brand Chinese tires with a 7040lb total payload capacity. With 714lbs tongue weight, 7000lbs could be riding on the tires. There's a high likelihood that this weight isn't spread evenly on the tires for a variety of reasons. Also, using my engineering skills, I figured out that each time I take a turn at advised speed (yellow speed limit sign at curves) the outside tires likely get overloaded by about 350lbs with an otherwise properly loaded trailer. I changed from Constancy ST205/75R14 LRC to Kumho 857 205/75R14 LRD. Kumho is a reputable manufacturer (sold by Sears and Discount Tire) and the new tires have a load rating of 2270lbs vs 1760lbs.

-Add a second light in the bathroom near the closet. We only had one, and it's not enough.

-Figure out a way to lock the pullout couch closed. I put a strap around the mechanism. Otherwise it opens in transit.

-Figure out a place to store the small table and lamp that isn't in the nook to the left of the big slide out. We had to replace the slide out trim because the table got trapped behind the trim as the slide out was moving. I've been putting the table in the bedroom near the door.

-Put old towels or some other protection between the rear chairs and the straps that secure them in transit. We've got black marks on the chairs from the black straps.

-Get some black rustoleum paint and brush the welds along the frame on the outside. Ours was delivered in March and had been towed from the factory on salty roads so it started to show rust a little early. I'm planning to repaint as much of the exposed steel as possible in the near future to stop all rust in its tracks.

-Figure out how you're going to jack the trailer if you have a flat, and do a trial run. On our trailer, the underside is fully boxed in so there is no access to the frame in front or behind the wheels. You're not supposed to jack on the axles according to Dexter (the factory apparently does anyway). I found that a bottle jack of the right size just fits between the two wheels where you can jack on the sub-frame for the axles. I made a 2" x 6" x 3/8" steel block (4ft lengths sold at HD or Lowes) to insert between jack and frame to spread the forces and prevent bending of the frame. You need a pretty good lift range on the jack, so not all bottle jacks will work well. I got a Strongway 12T with 9" to 18" lift range from Amazon.

-Also, the nuts are different for the spare and for the wheels. Make sure you have wrenches to fit both.

-Check the shower for leaks before your first trip. Ours was not caulked properly at the factory. External caulking doesn't solve the problem. The dealer had to disassemble and reassemble the shower to fix it.

-Eyeball the battens that hold the bottom cover on the trailer, also the strap that holds the black and gray drain to the frame. All are secured with self drilling screws that are a little on the wimpy side. The heads break off easily. I've drilled out and replaced three screws because the heads had snapped off.

-Propane bottles, batteries, and spare tire are all easy theft targets. If you store in a location that isn't well lit, fenced, and monitored, put locks on all.

-Check that the nylock bolts securing the stabilizer jacks are all tight. We towed our trailer home and then discovered that three of four bolts at one corner were missing, and the fourth was hanging on by a couple of threads. I figure lunch break must have occurred at the factory after only three corners had been tightened.
We found 2 Rustoleum products that work extremely well for the metal structure undercarriage. First was the Rustoleum rubberized spray undercoating that we used to spray as much of the undercarriage metal as possible, including the wheel wells. Next was the Rustoleum bed liner spray cans to spray the trailer hitch and exposed (to view) frame parts. Shake well before applying and you will get 100% use from the can. Spray cans are much more efficient in confined space than trying to use a paint can and brush. These materials, reach out, lay out pretty well and should last a long time. We used 8 cans of the undercoat and 4 cans of the bed liner spray for a 27' long unit. What we have found is that paint, however good the quality, does not hold up more than a year. The bed liner spray is tough as nails and takes a lot of abrasion.

This is likely the best investment you will make in maintaining your TT or RV. Unless your unit is on a permanent site, the underside will be exposed to the elements. In the rain, it's like going through a dirty under-wash.We found the best prices at Walmart in the automotive section.

Note of caution: Wear disposable clothes when spraying on the underside, use a breathing filter mask, wear goggles, mask/cover what you don't want over-sprayed, and use a tarp to prevent dribbling material on the drive. You can use a tarp just big enough for your work area and keep moving it along with your work. The clean-up is with mineral spirits and it is pretty easy to cleanup over-spray in the first day or so.
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Old 10-21-2015, 10:24 PM   #30
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TIRES!! When we bought our Aviator, we didn't have to think what to change or add as three of the 4 China Bombs exploded on us on our first 350 mile trip. They were under rated for the unit, but I didn't know it at the time. Went from D rated to E rated tires. So far, so good.
TPMS didn't do any good except to let us know they had blown out. No warning, just BOOM! Pressures and temps were all good, just tires were trash. Standard for FR products. Towmax tires.
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