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Old 06-24-2012, 06:41 PM   #1
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emergency kit

Just got home from the first trip of the season. We like to get out for a couple of days to a local campground to check out the TT's systems and set up/take down procedures before heading further afield during the summer. This year it was a particularly good idea that we were close to home, so to speak... I'll explain.

The morning after our arrival at the campground we were not so pleasantly surprised to find a puddle of water in front of the frig or really on the floor between the frig and the dinnet. It seemed to be coming from the shower area by the hinge side of the bathroom door. Anyway, we wiped up the water, put the coffee on and sat down to discuss where the water could have come from. It hadn't rained and we hadn't used the shower and the water was coming back!!!!! So ...... called the dealer to get some ideas as to what to do.

During the phone call, the service manager suggested I check the washers in the shower tap set. They sometimes leak after sitting for an extended period of time, ie winter storage.

After the call I checked the tap set and behold he was right. The short answer was the cone washers in the tap set of the shower were leaking and the water had filled the plastic tap set mounting assembly and the water was running down the inside of the 45 degree panel molding of the shower wall along the top of the shower base pan and onto the floor by the bathroom door. Since our dealer was an hour away they suggested I go to the local folks and get the necessary parts and the installation was straight forward. I have also checked the Lav and kitchen sinks and they were dry. Luckily there was no damage and all is well again.

Our question to you all is: do you carry an emergency kit and if so what do you consider important to carry? Obviously you can't take everything.

I do carry a fairly well thought-out tool kit but no spare parts per-say other than some duct tape and tie-wraps.
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Old 06-25-2012, 06:51 AM   #2
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Whoo boy; wrong guy to ask.
Off the top of my head:

1) Spare toilet valve
2) Spare Shower handset and hose (with washers)
3) Cone washers for faucets
4) Spare heater outlet filters
5) 5 feet of PEX tubing
6) 2 each of PEX fittings (90, T, union, valves) (with shear tool)
7) Zip Ties
8) Gorilla Tape
9) RTV Silicone II - Fresh tubes - never opened
10) Dicor - 1 tube
11) EB Tape (4 inch wide roll) with EB primer spray.
12) Wire 10 feet or so of (14/2 w/G, Bell wire, Red/Black)
12) Various size Screws, Nails, Double Sided Foam Tape, Fuses (15 - 20 - 30 - 40, bulbs, Pop Rivet Set, Crimp Type wire connector and terminal set.
13) Tin Snips (for cutting away metal if you have a blowout and need to clear away fender damage.
14) Window Shade Repair Kit (correct color string, eyelets, springs, needle and instructions)
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Old 06-25-2012, 07:26 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by herk7769 View Post
Whoo boy; wrong guy to ask.
Off the top of my head:

1) Spare toilet valve
2) Spare Shower handset and hose (with washers)
3) Cone washers for faucets
4) Spare heater outlet filters
5) 5 feet of PEX tubing
6) 2 each of PEX fittings (90, T, union, valves) (with shear tool)
7) Zip Ties
8) Gorilla Tape
9) RTV Silicone II - Fresh tubes - never opened
10) Dicor - 1 tube
11) EB Tape (4 inch wide roll) with EB primer spray.
12) Wire 10 feet or so of (14/2 w/G, Bell wire, Red/Black)
12) Various size Screws, Nails, Double Sided Foam Tape, Fuses (15 - 20 - 30 - 40, bulbs, Pop Rivet Set, Crimp Type wire connector and terminal set.
13) Tin Snips (for cutting away metal if you have a blowout and need to clear away fender damage.
14) Window Shade Repair Kit (correct color string, eyelets, springs, needle and instructions)
Very insightful list! I'm still a noobie, but mine consists of fuses and duct tape so far.

I have a lot of the items on your list, but hadn't actually considered packing them.... (I'm more of a "learn by painful trial" kind of guy. "Dang, it would have been nice to have my ____ here with me.") I think I'll follow your lead though and try to get a little more prepared to handle things onsite.
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Old 06-25-2012, 09:01 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by herk7769 View Post
Whoo boy; wrong guy to ask.
Off the top of my head:

1) Spare toilet valve
2) Spare Shower handset and hose (with washers)
3) Cone washers for faucets
4) Spare heater outlet filters
5) 5 feet of PEX tubing
6) 2 each of PEX fittings (90, T, union, valves) (with shear tool)
7) Zip Ties
8) Gorilla Tape
9) RTV Silicone II - Fresh tubes - never opened
10) Dicor - 1 tube
11) EB Tape (4 inch wide roll) with EB primer spray.
12) Wire 10 feet or so of (14/2 w/G, Bell wire, Red/Black)
12) Various size Screws, Nails, Double Sided Foam Tape, Fuses (15 - 20 - 30 - 40, bulbs, Pop Rivet Set, Crimp Type wire connector and terminal set.
13) Tin Snips (for cutting away metal if you have a blowout and need to clear away fender damage.
14) Window Shade Repair Kit (correct color string, eyelets, springs, needle and instructions)

Or just find out where Herk will be camping and stay there....

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Old 06-25-2012, 10:45 AM   #5
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I have 3 cases that travel in the excursion with me no matter where I go. Case #1 is a Stanley 120 piece tool set, with a couple extra items (like ratchet extensions) thrown in. Case #2 is a plastic "ammo can" style that holds 2 pair of jumper cables (more on why two sets in a minute), and #3 I got from an EMT friend.

Its a soft duffel with all kinds of compartments. In it, I carry a multi-tool, pliers, chanellocks, a 10 in one screwdriver, 2 flashlights, a good tire plug kit, an assortment of ratchet straps and bungee cords, a small but complete first aid kit, 30 feet of 12 gauge wire, fuses, a large aspirin bottle filled with electrical connectors, and a crimping took for them, Electrical tape, Duct tape (of course) and a selection of zip-ties. A digital volt meter, a 20 foot length of Poly rope and a tow strap. Finally a small squeeze-tube of silicone caulk , some JB weld, and some orange GOOP hand cleaner with a few rags.

On longer trip I have a milk crate with bottles of all the fluids my Excursion takes. If it all seems excessive to you, I suggest you try to mend a split radiator hose at night in the middle of nowhere with nothing more than a sharp rock and a quarter. I vowed never to be that helpless again. I would have paid $100 for just a sharp steak knife at that point. Funny thing is, I wind up using my kits more to help out other people than myself.

Which brings me to why I carry 2 sets of jumper cables. See.. my wife is a collector for a sub-prime auto loan company, and they always have cars in for repo. They have to clean out the personal items and store them for the people. As you can guess, very few return for their stuff. So they usually have 5-10 sets of jumper cables laying around at any given time.

We have all been asked at some time by a stranger if we have jumper cables they can borrow, right? Usually its younger people with a POS car who cant afford any. I will give them a jump, and tell them to keep the cables. That way they have a pair of their own, and I just have the wife get me another pair from her work. I vividly remember being young and poor, and the kindness a stranger did for me once, and love the feeling of being able to pass that on.

tim
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Old 06-25-2012, 11:07 AM   #6
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just for giggles, I ran outside and took some pictures of my kits.

Heres my EMS duffel. I guess I really should take the star of life off of it, so I don't get confused with someone who can administer first aid without fainting.




Here's the inside. you cant really see the screwdrivers, pliers and voltmeter, they are in front of the tire plug kit.



The Stanley tool kit. The glove stay inside it, which is why they look so flattened out...



And the jumper cables. I just realized, I forgot to replace the last set I gave away....



Im sure there are more things I could carry, but right now, I could do everything up to changing an engine out (and I could probably do that if I really had to)

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Old 06-25-2012, 12:07 PM   #7
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I spent years toting around tools only to find when an issue arose (which was very very infrequent even when I drove $200 cars) I didn't have what was needed anyway.

I have a leatherman, some tape and a cell phone.
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Old 06-25-2012, 01:38 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by prof_fate View Post
I spent years toting around tools only to find when an issue arose (which was very very infrequent even when I drove $200 cars) I didn't have what was needed anyway.

I have a leatherman, some tape and a cell phone.
The cell phone is of very limited use if you have no reception, or are very far away from help. I'd rather fix the problem than wait for someone to come help me.

You cant fix every problem on the side of the road. Obviously a con-rod sticking out the side of your block is beyond what I can fix away from my garage. But I refuse to be in a situation where I couldn't fix something simply because I didn't have some basic tools. If its cause a part is bad, thats one thing, but just cause I didn't have something like a volt-meter to see whats blowing a fuse? Nope, not this guy.

Tim



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Old 06-25-2012, 04:43 PM   #9
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Reasons' I've had to seek help in the past -

bad starter (3 times, 3 different vehicles) - tools or not you need the parts.
transmission died - not something I can fix on the side of the road
bad battery - no tools needed - just take it to most anyplace that sells batteries
had a belt chew through a sensor wire (crank position sensor) after a repair - again, not something that can be fixed without the parts
Decades ago I lunched an engine, a friend killed 2 - again, can't be fixed on the side of the road.

Had a trannie throw a pin out the case, drove home. Had a temp sensor go bad on my Expy - (had to make tool to change the part or R&R the intake manifold- not a roadside fix) but it ran anyway so no need to fix on the side of the road
All other problems have given warnings - as in brakes, wheel bearings, even one of the starters gave hints. Had an alternator seize up - in my driveway after a 300 mile drive (luck?) Had a cat converter plug up (max speed was 45mph), broke a trans input shaft once and drove that to the dealer.

Cars are way beyond the chewing gum and bailing wire stage of repair, and when towing you certainly don't want to jury-rig something.

Fuses don't blow for no reason - you have an overload or more likely a short. Can you diag and repair this on the side of the road? On a 72 pontiac, perhaps. I had a slowly draining batt over the winter and with 100 fuses and breakers and a wiring diagram it was still beyond my ability to diagnose - seems a timer circuit in the body computer was bad. Again, there are no tolls to fix that, you need the part AND the dealer computer as the body computer ties into your remotes and the chip in your key - you need to download it's RAM before changing, and upload the info again.

I was a mechanic for 15 years - there's little I can't fix but much I can't, or won't, on the side of the road.
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Old 06-25-2012, 05:31 PM   #10
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some things are just a bother!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by prof_fate View Post
Reasons' I've had to seek help in the past -

bad starter (3 times, 3 different vehicles) - tools or not you need the parts.
transmission died - not something I can fix on the side of the road
bad battery - no tools needed - just take it to most anyplace that sells batteries
had a belt chew through a sensor wire (crank position sensor) after a repair - again, not something that can be fixed without the parts
Decades ago I lunched an engine, a friend killed 2 - again, can't be fixed on the side of the road.

Had a trannie throw a pin out the case, drove home. Had a temp sensor go bad on my Expy - (had to make tool to change the part or R&R the intake manifold- not a roadside fix) but it ran anyway so no need to fix on the side of the road
All other problems have given warnings - as in brakes, wheel bearings, even one of the starters gave hints. Had an alternator seize up - in my driveway after a 300 mile drive (luck?) Had a cat converter plug up (max speed was 45mph), broke a trans input shaft once and drove that to the dealer.

Cars are way beyond the chewing gum and bailing wire stage of repair, and when towing you certainly don't want to jury-rig something.

Fuses don't blow for no reason - you have an overload or more likely a short. Can you diag and repair this on the side of the road? On a 72 pontiac, perhaps. I had a slowly draining batt over the winter and with 100 fuses and breakers and a wiring diagram it was still beyond my ability to diagnose - seems a timer circuit in the body computer was bad. Again, there are no tolls to fix that, you need the part AND the dealer computer as the body computer ties into your remotes and the chip in your key - you need to download it's RAM before changing, and upload the info again.

I was a mechanic for 15 years - there's little I can't fix but much I can't, or won't, on the side of the road.
I hear yeh!! But some things are just a real bother, like the ones that get you like our recent water leak or the chaffed brake wire over the axle or the duplex receptacle that fell off the wall under the dinnet seat. Those are the things that really irritate but can be easily fixed ..... with the tools and parts.

The next outing will find us a bit more prepared ..... also the dealer will be on speed dial!!!
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Old 06-25-2012, 05:43 PM   #11
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"We have all been asked at some time by a stranger if we have jumper cables they can borrow, right? Usually its younger people with a POS car who cant afford any. I will give them a jump, and tell them to keep the cables. That way they have a pair of their own, and I just have the wife get me another pair from her work. I vividly remember being young and poor, and the kindness a stranger did for me once, and love the feeling of being able to pass that on."

I'm glad that some people still pay it forward.
Good for you Tim
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Old 06-25-2012, 06:10 PM   #12
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I have many of the items already mentioned...

However, I just added a second black plastic battery box on the tongue of TT. Since it's up front on the outside, it's readily available where most needed. Keep rubber mallet, flashlight, key tools, etc.

Yes, they could be stolen but looks just like an old battery and worth the convenience of not having to either unlock a storage compartment or go back inside TT.

P.S. Keep jumper cables in ALL of my vehicles.
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Old 06-25-2012, 06:55 PM   #13
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Perhaps some of my opinions are from 20 years of riding motorcycle - you can't carry much tool wise.
I've also boated a good bit and water/tools are a bad mix - so you learn to made do with very little and limp to port the best you can.

Preparation, pre-trip inspections, maintenance also all go a long way to helping one avoid issues away from home.
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Old 06-25-2012, 08:39 PM   #14
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Perhaps some of my opinions are from 20 years of riding motorcycle - you can't carry much tool wise.
I've also boated a good bit and water/tools are a bad mix - so you learn to made do with very little and limp to port the best you can.

Preparation, pre-trip inspections, maintenance also all go a long way to helping one avoid issues away from home.
You are, of course, free to carry any tools, or none at all. However, I choose to be prepared. I would be truly please if those cases ride around in my truck, unused, till the pliers rust solid. If that happens, I'll be the first to say, "boy, was I stupid!". But I wouldn't hold my breath...

One small screw embedded in your tire cares not a whit about your inspections or maintenance. Even just changing a flat can be a major headache, or a minor 5 minute fix, depending on what tools and supplies you carry. I understand that some prefer to travel light. Me? well, I drive a diesel Exursion. A few extra pounds wont hurt in the slightest. And I'll still loan you what you need if I am there and can help.

Tim

p.s. When I had a boat, I spent way too many hours pulling people back to shore who couldn't even remove their air cleaner if they wanted to. I absolutely fail to see how water and tools are "a bad mix"
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Old 06-25-2012, 10:24 PM   #15
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I've driven a million miles I"m sure - only changed 3 tires - 2 in college (buying retreads cause I had no money and driving in construction zones) and the other time about 15 years ago (drove over a board in the road). Oh, my son had a flat on his bicycle a couple of years ago.
I've had nails in tires - drove with a roofing nail for about 7 months once. No leaks, just an annoying tap tap tap - they do eventually wear down too.
I've plugged a number of sidewalls in tires - a 'known' no-no - and never had an issue with leaks (sidewalls don't have belts to hold the plugs in). Never had to change a tire from this. (knock on wood!)

water causes tools to rust. rusty tools don't work.
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Old 06-26-2012, 06:13 AM   #16
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While it is impossible to anticipate a "show stopper" problem with your camper, I don't want to have to cut a camping trip short or spend hours or days tracking down parts or service to fix something important and simple.

One prime example was a park-like campground with "not-so-level" roads and someone coming out while I was coming in. While sliding to the right as far as I safely could, I unknowingly brushed a tree.

Worse, there was a jagged branch that hit my roof right at the edge where the EPDM wraps around to the hold down bar. It tore two fairly large holes in my roof.

Rain was in the area and my plan to get set up quickly and settled down for the night went right out "the holes in the roof."

Luckily for me I always to a "Post Flight" of the camper after a travel day and spotted the two tears.

If I had not brought my DICOR and EB kit, I would have had a real mess on my hands as the tears were right over my slide and damage would have been immediate and permanent.

As it was, it took all of 20 minutes to permanently repair both tears. A shot of DICOR into the holes to make a seal under the rubber roof and an EB patch cut from the roll on top to make a permanent repair.

Same with water problems.

Had guests over and the fancy Oxygenics plastic shower head snapped right off at the threads. Without a spare shower hose and head (and the tools to change it), I would have been driving all over trying to find a replacement while the DW was covered in soap. (another 5 minute - back in operation repair).

While you can't anticipate everything, water leaks or electrical problems can't wait.
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Old 06-26-2012, 08:32 AM   #17
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Lou, you impress me with all you carry tool and parts wise, and if (or when) I full time I'll have to carry my tools as there won't be a home base to retreat to.

But to carry a spare shower head? Unless it's a known weak item (in which case i'd upgrade to a better one) I'd never carry a spare. I could see carrying faucet guts, but not entire faucets. At some point you end up carrying a spare trailer and tool store 'just in case'.

At what point does fear of breaking down overtake the fun of camping?
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Old 06-26-2012, 08:39 AM   #18
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At what point does fear of breaking down overtake the fun of camping?
It never does, as far as I am concerned. However, not being able to respond in some way to the unexpected sure can.

tim
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Old 06-26-2012, 08:52 AM   #19
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So what kind of first aid kit do you carry? Bandaids and neosporin? Or do you have pressure bandages, sutures, splints, snake bite venom, etc - for people and your dogs? I don't have these things at home, nor in the camper or car, yet a medical issue is probably a lot more likely than a mechanical one as it's harder to do a preflight check on health.
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Old 06-26-2012, 09:23 AM   #20
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re; emergency kit

There are all kinds of what ifs, should'da, wish I had's. We've all been there and most of us will be there again. Like me and others have said; "...dragged the stuff around for years and never had the stuff I needed!!..." I flew center-seat in a P-3 for more years that I like to admit and have been stuck more than once in an unsupported airport, It was nice to have a fully loaded spares kit available, sometimes it even had the right stuff. But that said, you just can't take everything, you learn by experience to be prepared for where you're going. You may not have everything like Lou, but you will have what your experience dictates. It is the fool-hearty that isn't some what prepared.

My original post was the result of frustration and my own stupidity. After a few minutes of thinking and looking, the problem of the water leak was obvious. Now my new gained "experience" will see some cone washers in the tool/spares kit. Enough said.

Thanks everyone for the input and lets get out there and enjoy.
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