08.25.13 Reviews of purchases for Dora our RV

999102_511469705603721_529031575_nWe’ve been living the “on the road RV life”” since April 29th of this year.  We lived the “off the road parked in our own driveway RV life” for 5 months prior to that and we’ve learned so much about this unique lifestyle we and millions have chosen to live.  We’ve made several RV specific purchases and thought I’d review some them in case someone else is thinking about purchasing one of these items and wants some user information.

For our outdoor cooking grill we chose the Weber Q 200 with the separate  rolling stand.  I read a lot from other RVers and product reviews on the web before we purchased it.  When it arrived I was able to put it together and I am very low on the mechanical ability poll.  Roy has often said how much he loves cooking on this grill.  He said it doesn’t flame up like others and it cooks very evenly.  It also folds up to fit very easily in a small part of the under RV storage.  I love the flavor of the food cooked off of it too!  We purchased ours from Camping World for $199 but they sell it lots of places.

weberq200 weberq200foldedup

We purchased a two burner electric GE cook-top unit which lasted a little while but it was soooooo slow we started looking for an alternative.  I wouldn’t recommend spending money on that one unless you don’t mind really slow cooking and always just looking ugly after it was used for a while.  We found, again at Camping World, an electric induction cook-top and love it especially for it’s speed of cooking and ability to keep it clean.  It’s a Fagor induction. It came with a medium sized induction frying pan. The old two burner is now strapped in under the sink for those times that the induction skillet doesn’t work for a larger size pot, like maybe a pot of gumbo that you don’t mind cooking slow! I cook almost all our vegetables and pasta inside in it and Roy does all our frying outside in it.  In case you aren’t familiar with induction cooking I copied the details from the Camping World website.  The cost of this appliance was $89.

Safely use this Portable Induction Cooktop anywhere an outlet is available — now includes a 9 1/2″ induction-ready cast aluminum Skillet! Induction cooking technology warms only the food and pan – not the cooking surface! Energy produced by the cooktop is directly supplied to the cooking vessel by a magnetic field. There are no open flames or heating elements, so the glass surface remains cool to the touch. Energy-efficient cooktop uses 90% of energy produced. Self-adjusting burner detects the size of the cookware base and adjusts output automatically. Two independent zones allow for precise, immediate temperature adjustments. Food won’t stick to the safe, stay-cool surface, so it’s easy to wipe up even the messiest spills. Ideal for RV, boat, tailgating, dorm room, deck or patio—anywhere a 110-volt outlet is available. Included cast aluminum skillet features a non-stick surface and stay-cool ergonomic handle.

Features:

  • Cooktop uses safe, efficient, flameless induction cooking technology
  • Lightweight and compact — only 11 3/4″W x 14″L x 2″H and weighs only 5 pounds
  • Crystal glass panel is easy to clean because it stays cool and food won’t stick
  • Display panel chart relates cooking levels to temperature and cooking function
  • Soft touch controls with 10 power settings from 140ºF to 430ºF
  • Shuts off automatically if no cookware is detected
  • Convenient built-in 150-minute digital timer

induction cooktop

We recently purchased and received a Garmin GPS model RV 760 LMT.  I can’t do a review on that yet since it just arrived and we aren’t on the road but this one is specifically designed for RVs but can be switched over to automotive mode.  Roy’s entered information into it about Dora and one of it’s features is that since it knows her height it will guide us away from overpasses that are two low for us to go through.  It also has a much larger screen than our telephone GPS which we previously used and had difficulty seeing since the screen was about 1/4 the size of the Garmin.  When we’ve  had a chance to use it we’ll review it.  Roy did a lot of research before he decided on this one.  It’s cost was $400 and it was purchased straight from Garmin.

One very small yet important purchase was the dozen or so little round plate like rubbery things that you put between the dishes and pans so they don’t rattle when driving. They are called Grip-It China and Dish Separators. Before we purchased those everything rattled up a storm when we’d go down the road.  Now it’s much quieter and are nerves are saved a lot of rattle too!

cushion

I wrote about the satellite dish we recently purchased in a post at: https://rosalynandroy.wordpress.com/2013/07/28/satellite-dish-upgrade/.  We spent $761 off Ebay including delivery.  It would have cost $1400 new.  I would highly recommend this dish.  We never lose reception any longer and it’s always clear.  Big improvement over the other one.

We purchased a front window screen for when we’re parked and while I previously wrote about that I’ve copied it to here  and updated the information with new pictures in case you are interested.

siberiantigerscreen2 siberiantigerinsidescreenRoy ordered this front screen  from a company that makes sunscreens for Dora’s front window. It is used in place of closing the curtains since you can see out of it but no one can see into the RV except at night when the lights are on.  I like the curtains open most of the time but it gives you no privacy and this will. We picked out a design that is the face of a White Siberian Tiger.  It’s silver and black with blue eyes and will go perfectly with Dora’s black, silver and grey sides and now Dora has blue eyes like me!  If you’d like to look into getting one for your RV, the company’s website is www.heritageartltd.com.  They have lots of designs and other purposes you can use these for, like hanging one from the end of a patio so it’s not just for RVers.  Our managers, Rick and Debbie, have one which is where we first saw it.  Theirs is a Bengal Tiger and no they are not LSU fans, they picked it because the colors match their RV.  We’ve gotten several compliments about it and it works very well thought we don’t see through it as clearly as we hoped but still well enough to see what’s going on outside.

The table we use outside is a compact expandable aluminum table.  It also was purchased at Camping World for around $70.  We use it to eat on, fry food on, make crafts, work on plants and all sorts of things and it still looks brand new. It’s very easy to clean and still looks brand new even after frequent use these last few months.  It’s also very lightweight and easy to move around plus it can be smaller for normal use and expand if you need it to.  We always use it expanded since we’ve been here.  Camping World’s  website description is here:

This lightweight, versatile roll-top table offers two tabletop sizes: 28 1/2″L x 27 1/2″W or 48″L x 27 1/2″W.  The roll-top style table tops are constructed of heat-dissipating aluminum. The 28″ x 27″ top can be used with the un-telescoped frame to seat four people. Simply telescope the frame and add the additional table top piece for a 48″ x 27″ table top, which seats six people. The Compact Expandable Table features the double-duty Close-It Hold-It Strap System which tethers any handled trash bag to the side of the table while set up. When the table is folded, the Close-It Hold-It Strap System secures the table top dividers together for quick and easy packing. A telescoping table leg adjusts to uneven ground. Weighing only 12 lbs., the Compact Expandable Table supports 60 lbs. Includes a zippered carry bag with handle for transport and storage.
table That’s all the reviews I’ve got in me for today but all this kept me inside in the cool air conditioning while we’re experiencing the only summer we’ve had up here.  The highs the last few days have been in the 90s and I feel like I’m back in Louisiana when I open the door to the RV to walk outside!  Next week’s forecast shows it going back to mid 75s and before long the leaves will be changing and the Minnesota chill will be back in the air.  There are no air conditioners in the cabins and I’m quite thankful for my air conditioned RV now!
We only have one more horrible Saturday cabin turnover left to live through and in case I haven’t made it clear this is the day we’ve been waiting for many weeks and weeks.  Yesterday’s cabin cleanup was especially horrible with the high heat with no air conditioning and the fact that the two boys who have been making the beds the last few weeks had to start football practice so they couldn’t be here and we had to make all 65 beds plus clean all 12 cabins.  Yes our bed makers were football players!!!  After next Saturday we stop having children here since they are all in school and we begin having guests come in for shorter visits and less and less are rented each week before our final close down starting in mid September.
Well our Saints won today and I hope ya’ll will come back, ya’ hear!
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