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Old 04-09-2017, 03:41 PM   #1
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My Pleasure everyone, So. This is a multi-statement/question. I am completely "Green/Newby" to anything RV. Now my family has tent camped but, now it's no children with us and just my lovely wife and I. Just in the purchase process of a Rockwood 2109S, 2017MY. (If all goes well). I'm getting cold feet and pre-buyers remorse trying to see if this "lifestyle" is for me. we both love outdoors, work in very stressful environments, and just want to find quite time and beautiful scenery in NC, VA, Tenn, SC, WV areas. I'm pulling with either a 4wd Armada or a 2wd Titan. both 5.6l V8 and auto-transmission. We love/enjoy photography, walking/hiking, our dawg, and QUITE TIME. So Question time. Aside from the cost of purchase and learning how to drive a trailer. What can we expect cost wise and any real life advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks to everyone in advance.
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Old 04-09-2017, 04:05 PM   #2
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Ohh add-ons, lol. You will get dozens of possibilities of things to add to your camping adventurers. Kitchen stuff, bedding, nice to haves like chairs or loungers. You are basically setting up a new house so camp at home a few times to see what you need and want to add. Power protection for the camper, extra fuses, extra extension cord, electrical adapters. Extra water hose and a 90 degree attachment for the water inlet, hose water filter. A level and leveling blocks. Hold off buying until you pickup your camper and see what the dealer included in their package. Oh bug screens (mud daubers and wasps) for the hot water and furnace outlets. Check out a few youtube videos to see what others carry too.
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Old 04-09-2017, 04:13 PM   #3
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Replace the crappy analog thermostat with a digital one. Buy a sewer hose and appropriate connections. Get some leveling blocks or an Anderson leveler. Jack and tools to swap tires if you have a flat.
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Old 04-09-2017, 05:26 PM   #4
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I went through the same thing with my last motorcycle and now my camper. What you you need vs what do you want. Take the same stuff you primative camped with and then keep a list of things you wish you would have had. Chances are...You want want more than you need.
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Old 04-09-2017, 06:41 PM   #5
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Hi 1st timer
We started out as tenters also and went camping with what we had. That was 5 years ago. We have replaced the mattress in our trailer and that's about it.We love our FR 128s and think it's the best camping purchase we have made
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Old 04-09-2017, 07:08 PM   #6
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Nothing like camping to relax you from weekly work day stress! Sounds like you already have a love of the outdoors so I would imagine you will not regret your purchase. It is normal for one to be a little uneasy on a purchase of this amount. Once you get it and begin camping, that uneasiness will disappear.
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Old 04-09-2017, 09:26 PM   #7
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RV does not have to equal BOAT (Bust Out Another Thousand).

Start with a few nights close to home. Read as much as you can on this forum and talk to other campers. It won't take long to figure out what need to enjoy yourself.

We bought a used trailer to see if we liked it before we bought new. It helped us to see what features we wanted when we ordered the new one.
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Old 04-09-2017, 09:59 PM   #8
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Welcome from a fellow North Carolinian. I am a newcomer to the RV world as well and did spend some time on this forum finding out about essentials and nice-to-have items. I have an UltraLite 2304DS (25 footer with Murphy Bed and dual slideouts). I recommend a good weight distribution, anti-sway hitch (see mine below) and a tire pressure and temperature monitoring system. I suspect your Titan will be a better tow vehicle, but be certain that you check your GVWR and Cargo Carrying Capacity for each model with your trailer. Since I travel alone, a backup camera on my tow vehicle was an essential device (I installed one with an upgraded radio/DVD player from Crutchfields). Amazon.com is your friend for essential hoses, water filters, electrical cords and adapters, etc., at decent prices.

By the way, where in NC are you from? I am about to trek across the state to my daughter's for a week with my trailer to celebrate my grandson's 11th B-day. Looking forward to the trip.
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Old 04-09-2017, 11:03 PM   #9
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Referring to you saying you need to learn to drive with a trailer, take everything slow. Take it to a big empty parking lot and practice backing it up and learning to turn it as if backing into a camping spot. Tempers can get high quickly when you both become frustrated if you are new to trailering and trying to put it where you want it and she is saying one thing and you are trying to do another or vice versa so discuss it with your DW (Darling Wife) before hand and you will very quickly learn how to communicate what needs to happen and before you know it all will go smooth. It just takes practice and doing it. Good luck and enjoy.
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Old 04-10-2017, 12:35 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by NorthCarolinaDawg View Post
Aside from the cost of purchase and learning how to drive a trailer. What can we expect cost wise and any real life advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks to everyone in advance.
Cost wise will depend upon your camping style: Where you like to camp, how often and also what toys/equipment you like to bring along

There are also preventative maintenance costs, DMV fee & cost of insurance.

I would suggest holding off on buying a lot of stuff just yet. Get your feet wet and see what you actually need or want. Some things you will want to get right away while some items can wait. Many of us went a little crazy buying everything. I know I did and ended up returning a lot of unused items for a refund.
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Old 04-10-2017, 05:10 AM   #11
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We purchased a 2017 2109S last fall and taking it out for the first time today. We tow with Nissan Armada and it's a great vehicle for our purposes. This is our second trailer (the first was very similar in size and weight). We've always towed with SUVs and the Armada is the best at it, although I can't compare it to a truck. Don't know the year and model for your Armada but there are two different tow ratings for them. All have the tow mode switch on the dash if I remember correctly. But the larger tow package adds the air compressor for self leveling and transmission cooler. I'd want the larger tow package for towing your trailer although I'm sure the smaller package would tow it also. But you'll want you get a weight distribution hitch for safety and expect to spend several hundred on that.
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Old 04-10-2017, 06:46 AM   #12
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Welcome from a total newbie as well, who just purchased the same TT that you are considering on Saturday! This forum is a fantastic resource for you. We have only done 1 night in our driveway so far and that alone helped identify some of our needs/wants. Taking ours to a nearby KOA this weekend for the first voyage from home. BTW, I know it's early but I do like the 2109s layout so far.
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Old 04-10-2017, 08:13 PM   #13
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Thank You for the advice and yes Amazon is/will be called upon frequently.
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Old 04-10-2017, 08:19 PM   #14
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Thank You. Yes ours is a 2006 4wd Armada. Very good condition and serviced regularly. Ours is a base model "SE" yes it has a tow mode switch but it not the "true" tow package model.
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Old 04-11-2017, 12:02 AM   #15
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Welcome!! We just got our first trailer also. We have a lot of things on our list to buy. We will just work through it little by little. My first big purchase was a memory foam topper.
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Old 04-11-2017, 05:45 AM   #16
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Thank You. Yes ours is a 2006 4wd Armada. Very good condition and serviced regularly. Ours is a base model "SE" yes it has a tow mode switch but it not the "true" tow package model.
Ours is a 2006 LE. There was a lot of confusion among the sales people when we were shopping for it as to what towing package they had. Sounds like you have it figured out already. Great!Click image for larger version

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Old 04-11-2017, 06:11 AM   #17
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RV does not have to equal BOAT (Bust Out Another Thousand).

Start with a few nights close to home. Read as much as you can on this forum and talk to other campers. It won't take long to figure out what need to enjoy yourself.

We bought a used trailer to see if we liked it before we bought new. It helped us to see what features we wanted when we ordered the new one.
Great advice here.

I also recommend watching YouTube videos by Love Your RV, RVgeeks and RVProject.

We are on our 2nd used unit. When buying used, you need to be very patient and picky so that you don't buy someone else's problem, but it's makes much more sense financially than buying new.

Good luck and welcome to the forum!
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Old 04-11-2017, 06:56 AM   #18
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Big up front costs which tpu can sometimes get the dealer to throw in as upgrades...sometimes

WDH - $250-600 don't go too cheap here and get something with sway control built in.
Progressive industries EMS $250-300.
Sewer hose $30 Get something with a clear elbow.
Sewer Hose holder $30
Screens for wasps about $50 for all.
Mattress topper $150-500 depending on preferences and size.
Hoses $10
Water pressure regulator $30-50
Chairs $20-100
Other items are up to you but these are basics I would not leave without to give you an idea.

You will want some tools that you can bring from home as well as household supplies to cook clean and eat with. Depends on what you have at home and what you think you need. Camp in driveway. If you need it get it and leave it in the TT.
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Old 04-11-2017, 08:17 PM   #19
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Spend some time learning about Weight Distribution Systems (WDS) with built in sway control. I have a Husky Centerline TS WDS with built in sway control and would recommend you look at that brand.

A Progressive Industries EMS is a good buy as well.

Buy a high quality sewer hose at least 15 feet long and a clear 90 elbow fitting. You don't need pinhole leaks in a cheap sewer hole when your draining the black tank!

Drinking water hose at least 25 feet.

At least 50 feet of power cable because 25 feet won't cut it in a lot of places.

If you plan on doing a lot of dry camping consider buying a generator/inverter. I have a Westinghouse 2400i model that costs around $600. Try and get a group 27 battery with your initial trailer if at all possible.

Lots of small things like wheel chocks, leveling pads, water line regulator, 5 gallon water container, vinyl gloves for emptying your holding tanks, etc.

We where tent campers for over 30 years before we bought our first travel trailer 2 years ago. Lots of YouTube videos. Just do a search and you will find a lot of good information as well as not-so-good information. This FROG forum is excellent as well.

Good luck!

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Old 04-15-2017, 06:43 AM   #20
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A surge protector is a good thing. We are yet to use our new TT for the first time and our Progressive Industries EMS-PT30C has already saved the day.

Learning to back up. I've been driving a semi for 30 years. Learning to back up is like learning to ride a bike. You can be taught the basics but you just have to go out and do it. Eventually, like riding a bike, you don't think about it.. you just do it.

Tip #1 while backing put your hand on the bottom of the steering wheel. Move your hand the same way you want the trailer to go.

Tip #2 use your mirrors.

Tip #3 find a big empty parking lot where you can back in a straight line a minimum of 50 feet. Use a cone for your target to put the rear corner of your trailer on.

Tip # 4 based on the tow vehicles you listed your going to need extention mirrors. Especially since you're just starting out. etrailer.com sells them.

Tip #5 while straight line backing , watch the trailer and keep it parallel to the imaginary line to your cone. Make quick SMALL corrections but not much more than a 1/4 turn of the steering wheel either way.

#6 it is NOT ILLEGAL to pull up and start over. If you are have to make massive corrections or jackknifing the trailer pull up get straight and try again. Remember to make your corrections early and quickly. If you're to slow the problem gets worse very quickly. But you can and should pull up and start again.
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