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Old 10-05-2017, 03:21 PM   #1
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Well made my first big mistake.

It was a sad day leaving camp today. We didn't even make it one full year with the new Micro Lite and I made a big boo boo. I was breaking camp and actually taking my time as I do and for some reason I still don't know why, we had flipped the grab rail backwards against the trailer. ( I'm thinking cause it makes a good garbage holder) but in that position it just blended into the side of the rig and I never noticed it and closed up the awning and yes you know where this is going... in that position it overlaps the awning bracket and yes I closed it up in the bracket. I will say for the little motor in the awning it has some mighty power and leverage. It damn near cut the grab rail in two. But worse is that it slightly bent the main awning mounting rail the mounts against the trailer. Including starting to pull the center rivets out of the trailer. Thankfully it didn't crack the fiberglass beyond the awning rail. So now I have to see if I can straighten it or I'll be asking for help on where to find awning parts. Lesson learned BIG TIME... just hope not a very expensive lesson...
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Old 10-05-2017, 03:27 PM   #2
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Sorry to hear that - don't know what to say other than remember the lesson and move on
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Old 10-05-2017, 04:49 PM   #3
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Earlier this year we pulled the trailer to load food before departing. Got everything loaded and off we go. About 30 minutes into the trip I notice the grab rail out. Stopped and closed it. When we returned home the mail box was laying in the driveway. Totally ripped it off the mount. However the reinforcing I put in the aluminum post did not budge and no damage to the grab rail.
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Old 10-05-2017, 05:17 PM   #4
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Do what we did, make a check list and check it twice, put everything on it. we did a spreadsheet and have several of them inside our door of the battery , gallery tank level box. the rig doesn't move till we place that check in all boxes. It works well for us.
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Old 10-05-2017, 05:37 PM   #5
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Do what we did, make a check list and check it twice, put everything on it. we did a spreadsheet and have several of them inside our door of the battery , gallery tank level box. the rig doesn't move till we place that check in all boxes. It works well for us.
And this is a great idea. However I don't think I would have had the grab rail on the list because it's never ever been in that position to potentially cause a problem. It is on the list to make sure it's across the door before pulling out. But it blended in sonwell with all the stuff there. Since I do need to replace the grab rail, I think I am going to custom bend one that is a couple of inches shorter so that it can not overlap the awning mount and I will never have to worry about this again. It just has me very upset cause we keep the rig in excellent condition and like I said it's not even 1 year old... boo hoo
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Old 10-05-2017, 05:52 PM   #6
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Pup Scrap,the awning rail is a extrusion,you should replace it with New! Youroo!!
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Old 10-05-2017, 06:01 PM   #7
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Yeah it's a simple extrusion. I am learning in my brief search already that the arms of the awning are sold as a complete unit and you can't buy just the individual structural members. I'm still searching though. But it is a slight bend that I want to see if I can straighten first but then if not it will be replaced with a new assembly
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Old 10-05-2017, 06:02 PM   #8
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They make many shapes of hand rails....maybe you can find one to work better.
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Old 10-05-2017, 10:04 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Bikersarge View Post
Do what we did, make a check list and check it twice, put everything on it. we did a spreadsheet and have several of them inside our door of the battery , gallery tank level box. the rig doesn't move till we place that check in all boxes. It works well for us.


Would you mind sharing your checklist?
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Old 10-06-2017, 12:46 PM   #10
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Earlier this year we pulled the trailer to load food before departing. Got everything loaded and off we go. About 30 minutes into the trip I notice the grab rail out. Stopped and closed it. When we returned home the mail box was laying in the driveway. Totally ripped it off the mount. However the reinforcing I put in the aluminum post did not budge and no damage to the grab rail.
Visualizing this reminds me of Bob Munro, aka Robin Williams, in the movie RV!
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Old 10-06-2017, 01:44 PM   #11
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I have learned a ton in these forums and from personal observation.

The day before I depart I do everything needed to drive away. Then over my driver display I place a stop sign picture. I recheck everything at 3-5 a.m. as I am ready to leave. I still with double redundancy have come close to missing something on the list.

To triple remind me I cannot start the truck without removing the tape from starter on truck. My struck does not use keys but must depress a button.

Have not had any further mistakes since.
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Old 10-06-2017, 02:09 PM   #12
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I really do appreciate all the good pointers and suggestions everyone is making however it would also be nice if people actually took the time to read AND UNDERSTAND what actually occurred here. I too like many have checklists. however on the checklist is to make sure the grab handle is up against the door ready for travel. If you were to understand what occurred to me, all the checklists in the world would not have helped because folding the grab handle inward is one of the last things that most people do. Allow me to try and make it clear, I was far from ready to leave the camp therefore I was way up on the checklist regarding the grab handle. It was simply time to roll in the awning so that I could continue packing everything up. The grab handle was not in normal use position nor was it time to put it across the door for travel. It was completely the opposite. It was laying away from the door flat against the trailer.
, (Well almost flat it was actually laying on the awning arm.) I was standing in the doorway looking towards the front of the trailer and the upper awning as I was pushing the button to retract it. The grab handle was laying flush with the trailer off to my lower left and out of sight. That is how I smashed it in the awning arm. So once again thank you for all the wonderful checklist suggestions and all the wonderful stories of leaving the grab handle extended out but unfortunately none of these apply to my situation. For those who have taken the time to read this far and appreciate and understand what actually occurred here are some pics to illustrate the damage that can occur so quickly and innocentlyClick image for larger version

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Old 10-06-2017, 02:17 PM   #13
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Pup, you wouldn't believe what I did on our first trip with our new 2018 Cherokee. I've dealt with slides for years and checking around them. On first trip a can of beans...LRG SIZE escaped from it storage and found it way behind one edge. I missed it, open the slides...BOOM !! Hydraulic slides are extremely strong. the force tore the entire edge off the slide...screws and all. 8hrs to rebuild that section when I got home. So don't feel bad.
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Old 10-06-2017, 02:26 PM   #14
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Wow. I think I would have given up eating beans but not after shedding some tears especially on the first trip. We take such pride and care in our rigs and then to have something so stupid and innocent of a mistake ruin all that. For me the financial hurt is bad enough but now I feel like our new Baby's innocence has been lost
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Old 10-06-2017, 02:39 PM   #15
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I guess my post was to politely phrased to tell you it should have never been in that position ever.

I apologize if you took my post wrong. Again just because you can do something, place and awning or handle in a certain position does not mean you ever should. Now you learned that lesson. Hoping you do not repeat same.

Take care
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Old 10-06-2017, 02:43 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allenb12 View Post
Earlier this year we pulled the trailer to load food before departing. Got everything loaded and off we go. About 30 minutes into the trip I notice the grab rail out. Stopped and closed it. When we returned home the mail box was laying in the driveway. Totally ripped it off the mount. However the reinforcing I put in the aluminum post did not budge and no damage to the grab rail.
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Visualizing this reminds me of Bob Munro, aka Robin Williams, in the movie RV!
Yeah, that is a good one. We have all either made one of those embarrassing mistakes or will make one. You can bet on it. It happens to all of us.

I feel that any factory accessories installed should not be able to interfere with each other like that. The factory should have made provisions so this incident could not occur.
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Old 10-06-2017, 02:44 PM   #17
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Well made my first big mistake.

Please Tonyshope and others no offense taken. And no I can not explain why it was in that position in the first place. It never has been before. It was solely my stupid mistake and one I wish I could go back on. And again no offense intended. It's just I have been getting so many both private and public messages about creating a checklist. I just wanted to thank everyone but also let them know that no checklist would have saved me from this stupid mistake. It was like this for days as we were using the trailer. The worse part is that the handle only overlaps the awning mount by inches. You would think it would not be built that way over just inches. But I will say one thing "Lesson Learned". Also I am going to prevent it from occurring again. I have taken the replacement handle and cut 1.5" off the ends of the tubes. Just enough so that now it lays flat AGAINST THE TRAILER and does not fall into the awning mount. Sad but it took me a couple of minutes to solve this problem permanently. One would think the engineers designing the rig would have done this too.
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Old 10-06-2017, 02:59 PM   #18
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Please Tonyshope and others no offense taken.
Every single one of us in life has had that thing happen that we just shook our heads and said why me?

I will promise you this much. If this is the worse thing that happens in your life or camping career you truly are a lucky person.

Live and learn and accept gracious falls because likely something worse will likely happen one day and you will look at this moment and say Thank goodness this is all that happened.

Again take care move forward, do not beat yourself up and just write it off as it was yesterday.

But the knowledge you now have will save many campers you run into along the line. You can walk to a new neighbor and say let me tell you a story and what happened.

OUR COMBINED EXPERIENCES SAVE OTHERS. Thanks and god bless.
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Old 10-06-2017, 03:01 PM   #19
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Wow such wise and true words !! A Lesson to live by and a great way to look at things. Thanks so much.
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Old 10-06-2017, 04:44 PM   #20
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Yeah it's a simple extrusion. I am learning in my brief search already that the arms of the awning are sold as a complete unit and you can't buy just the individual structural members. I'm still searching though. But it is a slight bend that I want to see if I can straighten first but then if not it will be replaced with a new assembly
Used and such on E Bay
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