Two Hams on the Road

First Damage

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It is inevitable that you will get some dings or scratches in any camper. With any luck, this trip will be the worst of them. We stopped at Pioneer Park Campground in Somerset PA - made the turn into the campground and down the hill and scraped the top of the truck and underside of the nose pretty bad. Fortunately we did not hit any wet weather, so the spot stayed dry. We used a fiberglass patch on the underside of the nose, and sanded it smooth when we got home. Janice has supplied us with the paint codes. We have 6" clearance between the truck and camper, and sit level (so any adjustment will put us out of level).

We had beautiful weather and enjoyed the Amish country around Berlin Ohio. It was pretty countryside with great cheese and bakeries. The picture is at Scenic Hills RV Park in Berlin.

From there, we went to the national amateur radio convention (Hamvention) in Dayton Ohio. Aside from the convention, it was interesting to stay in a campground with lots of other hams, and look at all the ways that folks have mounted antennas on their rigs. We stayed at the KOA, which provided bus service to Hamvention. This is the only place we have every seen a pickup and fifth wheel completely done up in the KOA logo. We also visited the National Air Force Museum and the Packard Museum in Dayton. Molly didn't get much swimming, just a dip in the creek at Douthat State Park on the way home.

On our final day, coming down a 4 lane US road, slowing from 55 to 45 we had our first blowout. We were fortunate, as it was sunny and nice and we were about a block from a volunteer Fire Department, with a huge parking lot. As it was lunchtime, a couple of the volunteers were there and they let us use their floor jack, air hose for the spare, bathroom to wash hands, and even insisted we take some cold water.

When we got the camper we switched to the tires from our old camper -- B/F Goodrich Commercial T/A 225/75R16 LT tires with about 30K miles and less than 4 years. We don't know if we hit something in the road or if it was tread separation. There was a recall on the Commercial T/A with a manufacture date the same as ours, but a different size. We now have 4 new Bridgestone Duravis R250. We looked at the Michelin XPS Ribs, but reviews said the Duravis were comparable -- and they were $600 less for four tires.

Camper is at the dealer now for repair from the blowout. The fender is definitely shot, but hopefully nothing too costly.

We still love our Reflection, and are looking forward to our next outing with a group from our dealership.

Still have to see another Grand Design on the road.
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  1. TucsonJim's Avatar
    Nice write up! We're hitting the road tomorrow for our adventure. Hope your repairs go well. So the impact point was the bed of the truck?
  2. 2hams's Avatar
    Impact point was left rear corner of the truck. It actually dented and took paint off truck, which is a long bed.

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