About Us

Southeast (Gulf Coast), Texas, United States

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Outa’ Red Bay……….. On to Georgia Rally!!

We got to Red Bay last Saturday morning, and left this past Friday morning.  We drove to Roanoke, AL, passing through Birmingham along the way, and spend the night at a Wal-Mart in Roanoke. 

We had stopped at the Wal-Mart because our tire pressure monitor was beeping, and telling me that I had a low tire on the rear driver’s side of the car that we were towing.  We did some shopping while waiting on the repair (they found a screw, probably from the Red Bay Service center), and by the time they got the flat fixed, it was late, so we just parked overnight. 

While at Red Bay, we got all of our items taken care of…….

1.  Roof and  DS slide floor inspected and found OK

2.  Went to the factory, and had them recoat the rear PS wheel well where a blow out wore off the undercoat

3.  Had a brace re-welded where Cummins removed it from a Spartan Steering Gear bracket that was replaced due to a recall.  Here are some pictures of the Bus on the rack, and the brace being welded……..


4.  Had Brannon at Custom RV replace the entry door lock and handle, adjust the keyless entry system, fixed the stove vent cover and replace the motor on the bedroom slide

5.  Had Trevor Nichols sew up and fix a screen for covering the screen door to block the sunlight…… See below!!

6.  Purchased RV parts at the store for myself and about 7 other people

On the screen for the screen door, we met a couple that went ‘dumpster diving’ and found an old MCD sun block screen and sewed it up to be able to snap it to the screen door for shade inside the motorhome.  They travel with a sewing machine, so they were able to sew it themselves.  Here is a picture of their screen………


Snaps on the top, and the original old MCE ‘pull rod’ on the bottom.  She took some of the old screen and sewed a stiffener on the side edges.  We had Trevor to sew ours, and he put a ‘binding’ on the edge and used black snaps.


The nice things are that it was ‘almost’ free, and it matches the other screens on the windows!!

While we were in Red Bay, the town had a traveling Smithsonian exhibit on display.  The theme was “How we worked”!  I stayed with the Bus, and Patsy visited the exhibit.  Here are some pictures that she took…….


There were also some quilts on display………..




We arrived at the TRVN rally campground, Pine Mountain RV Resort, at 2:00PM today, and got set up on our site. 

More on the rally later………..

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Tiffin at Red Bay…….. First 4 Days!!

We left the Wal-Mart at Fulton, MS early Saturday morning and arrived at the Red Bay Service Center campground at about 9:30AM.   We got the last full hookup site that was available at the time.  Here is a view of our site…………


On Sunday, we went out for a drive around town.  Across the street from the campground we found an old Tiffin Tag Axle motorhome…..


The town of Red Bay was having a “Founder’s Day” event during the weekend, and along with arts & crafts booths downtown, they had a band.  There were also displays around town.  One of them had another old Tiffin coach on display on Main Street….


Here is a few of the other displays around town…..


On Monday, the RV businesses around Red Bay were open for business, so I began my ‘chores’ to take care of things.  First on the list was to pick up some ‘Alderwood’ lumber for Mark Didelot’s stained glass window installation in his Phaeton.  I had called Chris Berry, the local ‘things made of wood’ guy, and he said he had some alderwood.  However, he did not make it to our specifications until I got there.  He had to plane the boards to 1/2” thick from the normal 5/8” thick.  He then ran it threw a drum sander to finish it…….


After leaving Chris’ place, I went by Brannon Hutcheson’s business, Custom RV, to confirm our appointment for Tuesday morning, and to check out our new mattress that was stored there by the seller.  The looked good, and after sleeping on couches for a week, Patsy and I were ready to get our bed back.  My third stop was at the Tiffin Offices to find out about a Spartan Chassis recall on our Bus, where they had to cut a brace off.  I wanted to make sure that Tiffin agreed to the modification.  It turned out that they preferred to weld it back, so that is on our list.

While I was in the Service Center office, I saw Jerry Williamson, the Tiffin National Sales Manager that I had dealt with during our purchase,  He was showing some Chinese men around the service center.  I overheard him tell some of the service center employees that these guys were here to check out the service center because they were with a company that is going to start selling Tiffin’s Breeze motorhomes in China!

I spent the rest of Monday shopping for parts at the local camp store, not only for me, but for three other motorhome owners

Since we had arrived on Saturday, we had been trying to meet up with a couple from Fort Worth, TX, but every time that we went by their motorhome, they were gone.  They came by our Bus on Monday afternoon and we got to visit.  They are Mike and Sandie Mills, and I got to know them through their Blog, Phannie and Mae.  Patsy took their picture before they left…..


On Tuesday, Patsy and I were up early to drive to Custom RV for a 7:00AM appointment to get some repairs done.  We had Brannon replace our entry door lock, adjust the locking mechanism, replace the motor to operate the driver’s side rear slide, modify our stove vent system, and to adjust our keyless entry system.  Here is a picture of the inside of the door lock and a picture of Brannon replacing the slide motor……..


The best thing that happened today was that we picked up our mattress!!  Here is our bed now looks like……….


The new mattress is a little thicker than the original and really comfortable…… especially after sleeping on our two couches for a week!!

Today, some friends from the Texas Bluebonnet Allegro Club, Hank and Shirleen Smith arrived in Red Bay.  We will spend the rest of the week waiting to get into a service bay for our last two repairs, and hanging around town with the Smith’s and some other friends here.  We hope to leave for Pine Mountain, GA on Thursday or Friday for the TRVN Fall Rally.


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Time with Rachel…………

Well, Grammie got her grandchild fix over the last two days………. Thursday and Friday.  On Thursday, we went over to our daughters house early, about 10:30AM, and we picked up Rachel since her dad got through early with patients at the hospital, and they were going to work on the new house. 

Since my definition of “early” differs quite a bit from theirs, instead of facing the possibility of picking up Rachel even earlier on Friday morning, we opted to keep Rachel overnight in the Bus.  Grammie and Rachel had a sleepover!!!

Since we did not pack food for her or toys in the Bus, we had to first stop off at the local Kroger's for supplies.  Along with the milk, turkey, and cereal, Rachel also spotted a big pink ball, so we had to depart with 99 cents to buy it…….. just can’t say ‘no’ to a sweet little girl.  There’s another one named, Aubrey, in Victoria that has figured out the same thing.  Here’s the pic……..


We spent the afternoon at the Bus where we had lunch and she took a nice long nap.  When she woke up, we watched a video and Grammie took her for a walk around the RV park………..


After the walk, we went to Wal-Mart to pick up some supplies for our trip, and Rachel found a Halloween decoration with a Minnie Mouse on it….. so another 99 cents out of the diesel fuel bucket!!!  Plus, she had to carry it out of the store……….


When we got home, the sleepover started, and of course, since we did not have a bed, we all slept on the couches up front!!  First, another video on the front TV……


We stopped the video long enough to get her bed set up, and she and Grammie dressed alike, and then started the video again before bedtime.


Rachel was a really good girl on Friday morning when she woke early on my terms………… almost 9:00AM!!!

After breakfast and a bath, she and Grammie dressed up again and I tried to take pictures, and in my opinion, they turned out so good, I could not narrow it down to less than what follows……….


Since we were leaving on Friday, we had to vacate our site at the RV park at 11:00AM, so we drove over to a Wal-Mart near the old house.  Since Mike is ‘doctoring’ longer than he thought today,  Deanne came by where we are parked and picked up Patsy to do some shopping.  They left me with a sleeping Rachel……. what trouble could I get into with that??

Patsy and I left Little Rock on Thursday night and drove toward the Tiffin Service Center in Red Bay, AL.  We managed to get to Fulton, MS, about 30 miles from Red Bay and spent the night on a Wal-Mart parking lot. We drove the whole 300 miles in heavy rain!   We will check into the Service Center campground later on Saturday morning.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Fall 2013 Road Trip–AR, GA, PA, OH & MO

It’s been a while since we hit the road for more than a couple of weeks, so, when we signed up for a Tiffin RV Owner’s Network (TRVN) rally at the resort at Pine Mountain, Georgia, I suggested to Patsy that we make a real road trip out of it. 

We decided that on the way, we would travel through Little Rock to visit our third grandchild……… Rachel, and her parents, our daughter and son-in-law. 

Then, on the way from Little Rock to Pine Mountain, we decided that we would stop for a few days at Red Bay, AL…….. at the Tiffin factory where the Bus was built!  We need to have a couple of things checked out by the factory personnel, and we want a local RV shop replace our cracked entry door handle and adjust the locking mechanism to prevent the new lock from breaking.

Another item we are dong in Red Bay is picking up a new king-size mattress for the Bus.  On the TRVN forum, a couple that had just picked up their new motorhome was at Red Bay, and did not like the fact that the mattress was two-piece….. having a crack/space in the middle.  They replaced their new mattress with a ‘Select Comfort’ air mattress, and listed their “old” mattress with 2 nights sleeping on it for sale at a good price………. so I made a deal on it.  So that we would not have to get rid of our existing mattress at Red Bay, we opted to remove it before we left on Tuesday, and we are sleeping on our two couches!!  We will arrive in Red Bay on Saturday, but we will have to wait until Monday to pick the new mattress up because we have it stored at the RV shop that is working on our door lock!

Here is a picture of our bedroom without the mattress (just the platform……..


To finish the itinerary of our trip, after Pine Mountain in Georgia for a week, we will head north to Pennsylvania to attend an FMCA motorhome rally at York, PA.  This rally just happened to fit well with our plans because we had decided that since we would be so far from home, we would make it a long trip, and had decided to visit the Amish country in Pennsylvania and Ohio. 

We will finish up the trip in Branson, MO.  Our original plans was to re-visit Rachel in Little Rock on the way back to Texas.  However, when our schedule was laid out, it turned out that Deanne and Mike were going to be in Branson for a medical seminar……… and could use help with taking care of Rachel!  Nice fit, so now we will be doing a “Rachel Trip” at Branson for a couple of days.  I have been searching the internet for ideas on what to do with a toddler in Branson!!  One thing on the list is a Duck ride……. one of those boat/truck vehicles that travels on water and land.

We arrived at Little Rock about 3:00PM today, and got to visit with Rachel and Co. for a little while at their house, and then went out to dinner together.  I got only a couple of pictures while she was watching something on Deanne’s computer.  Here they are:



Mike and Deanne plan to do some more work on their new house during the next two days while we are here, so we will have Rachel for quite a bit of time!!

More later………….