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Old 03-07-2009, 10:32 PM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 6
Default Will This Marriage Survive RV Downsizing?


We’re long-time Rvers coming at Lt Wt TT’s from the other direction. We’re both a little bit beyond 65 now, having sold our business and retired in our 50’s. We’ve been traveling in various RVs starting with a 35 ft 5th wheel for over 16 years ago. During a 2-year stint of full timing we owned a 40 ft motorhome and recently sold our last motorhome, a 34 ft Winnebago gas coach and probably the best of the lot. We were already having withdrawal symptoms before we sold our motorhome and then the notion of a more practical lightweight TT towable by a smaller SUV got hold of us.

Your group and the Yahoo group convinced us that there just might be life after big RVs. We have recently purchased a “like new” 2008 X-189FBS and a 2005 Toyota 4Runner V-8 and after two 4 day outings, we feel that with just a little more experience in traveling lighter that we will probably be ready for a 2-3 month outing to beat the AZ heat before early summer.

We could use all kinds of info on packing light and practical things. The big frig is great but “the cook” is struggling with space for pots and pans and other kitchen essentials in the cabinets. Some wire racks from Wal-Mart have helped some with spice and small box storage.

Although we love our grandkids, this will always be a two-person coach. Has anyone found a good way to utilize the bunk cabinet over the bed? We also know we are going to have to learn to spend a lot more time outside but ultimately will spend a few hours a day on the couch which will likely never be made into a bed. Has anyone considered if there is room to remove the coach and put in a couple of smaller easy chairs?

I also see that a bike rack was an option. Does anyone know anything about this? I’m going to fax the factory to find out about this and a couple of other items.

My biggest beef on QC so far is the shower. It is going to have to be completely redone around all the edges before any substantial use. For another $1.50 they could have run it all the way to the ceiling and eliminated much of the leak potential. I am considering using 1/8” Plexiglas to span the gap to the ceiling and am trying to figure out some type of trim or molding to finish the gap and the vertical edge.

I also have some questions about a WD hitch, which I will post there.

We’ll look forward to sharing with the group.

Terry & Nancy L
Travlin' Kitty; Ashley (has been from Fairbanks to Guadalajara)
2008 X-189 FBS Newbie
2005 Toyota 4Runner V-8
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Old 03-08-2009, 08:01 AM   #2
Junior Member
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 6

Hello dont really have any answers for you because i'm still looking myself this site seems kind of slow but hang around there are a few people here anyways really hope you enjoy the trailor

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Old 03-09-2009, 09:00 AM   #3
Senior Member
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Phoenix, Arizona
Posts: 173

Hello fayrankin, and welcome! I don't have the 189, but there are a couple things we have done to increase storage in out TT.

The first we found was a rubbermaid door hanging basket set.


Easy to install and holds quite a bit. We have one on each side of the bathroom door, one for bath items, the other for kitchen items which opened up space for pots and pans.

Next we purchased a Curt RV bumper mount trailer hitch. See...

It has a 350# TW capacity which is more than enough for a bike rack, or hitch mounted Cargo Carriers. See....

Another option is a roof mount storge container for your 4runner. The added benefit being it will also help deflect wind, minimizing the front sail area of the trailer. See...

On the Shower, I was also a bit annoyed to see the shower not enclosed. I used clear silicone around the perimeter of the shower enclosure, then sprayed 3M scotchgard sealant all around the bathroom walls. So far no problems!

Good luck with everything!!
2006 Nissan Xterra
B&M Trans Cooler
Equalizer Hitch
2011 Nomad 206
Panasonic/Pioneer/Kicker ~ Audio/Video System
Days Camped /2009 / 33
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Old 03-26-2009, 06:19 AM   #4
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: MICHIGAN
Posts: 31
Default space for pots n pans

Hi there, the first few times out in my trailer, I tried to bring all my pots and pans and gadgetry along. I kept track that I barely was using much of the stuff! What works for me now is keeping in mind what meals I plan to make, I make out a breakfast, lunch, and dinner ideas plan and then look at it to see what things I require to put them together. That helped me get the pots down to 2, and one small pan, 1 griddle. Then I looked into the collapsable bowls with lids, great for mixing or storing in the fridge. In addition, I purchased some containers from Tupperware that I can use in the freezer, the fridge and the microwave or even dry storage. Another great thing that is the perk for cutting back and packing light was to allow myself just a few great appliances, a light weight cool to the touch 2 slice toaster, the bullet compact mixer(I don't take all the accesories; one blade and two cups), a 2cup coffee maker, and my favorite; instant hot beverage maker; fill w/water plug in hit the button and in less than a water for tea, hot cocoa, jello, etc. The two cupboards above the fridge are designated for baking and the Tupperware containers, and the cupboards above the dinette are for the rest, even had enough room to install a small key operated safe so I secured it inside and keep medicine, important papers, credit card, ect. in there when I need to. Best of luck in your venture to lighten up, just keep in mind your favorite recipes and what you'll need that will help get you there before you take off. If not, just keep a list of what you used and if only one time in a month, maybe you could get by without it. Have fun.
TT: 06 FFX189FBR
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Old 04-14-2009, 07:57 PM   #5
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Courtenay Van Isle BC Canada
Posts: 105
Default Downsizing

Hello Terry & Nancy,

We too have run the gamut from a 30' fifth, down to an Aliner, now recently back up to a 185FBS. I share many of your observations. With respect to the overhead bunk, we have forever banished any sleepovers from grandchildren by removing the mattress and safety netting. Wifey uses several open ended plastic containers for shirts, shorts and socks, one side for her, the other for me. Seems to work fine.

I too have wondered how we can better utilize the sofa, as it will rarely be a bed. The sofa does not provide real lounging comfort and I have a vision of two RV size recliner chairs and removing the sofa altogether. That will come in time.

Ah yes the shower. Well, as mentioned, we graduated from an Aliner and are so happy to have a BR that we have complained little. The bathroom is a "mini" to say the least. However, we have managed to have our showers without creating a flood. We must shower singly, I might add. However, when I finally hooked in the supplied water filter, the flow was so restricted that a shower was difficult. I spoke with the service man and he shared that this has been a commonly identified problem with no solution except to remove the filter and hook up the bypass, which I am shortly to do.

We have just been out on several adventures of short duration since obtaining the trailer, so we are still in the "habituation" phase. We quite like the unit though, and it seems to have been put together quite well regards wiring, plumbing, fit and finish etc.

I towed with a Chevy Equinox, which was struggling mightily as it was at its maximum allowable weight. I have just converted to a Chevy Trailblazer which is rated for 7000 lbs. I have yet to tow with it, but am looking fwd to the extra power. I utilize a single arm weight distribution system I believe put out by Reese. It is a slick piece of gear and rated for 4000 lbs. I get no sway or wandering whatsoever with this hitch. Passing semis coming either way have no effect on my rig.

That's my story and I'm stickin to it. Nice to see a kindred spirit out there with similar experiences. If you need more info on my hitch, I can provide it.

Ian & Lynne Parsons
Courteney BC Can
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Old 07-08-2009, 08:28 AM   #6
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 1
Default Patagonia State Park

Hi Terry & Nancy;
I believe you are the same couple who was camped across from us at Patagonia State Park the end of February? We are from Wisconsin and were "babysitting" our daughter's family Prowler TT. In any event, we were very interested in your TT, and you were both kind enough to give us a tour, both inside and out. We decided to look for one ourselves, and as luck would have it, we found a 2008 189FBS last week, have made a deal and will pick it up this Friday. Thanks for taking the time to show us your unit, and hope you have gotten all your storage problems solved by now. We may see you on the road somewhere, maybe even Patagonia again during rodeo week.
Lyn & Joanne Socks
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Old 07-19-2009, 01:42 PM   #7
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 6
Default Out Almost two months now

Lyn, Joanne & All,

Yes, that was us at Pategonia. Glad to hear you've found a FunFinder you like. Happy Travlels.

We left AZ in mod-May and found heavenly cool and rain in the White Mtns of AZ. Fould more cool and rain in Gunnison Co. near the Blue Mesa Reservoir. Last few weeks have been mostly pleasant and dry in the Great Lakes area. Going to be at the City Park (Magnus) on Lake Michigan later this week for the 2nd of 2 family weddings that have defined our summer.

V-8 4Runner with Valley WD hitch doing just fine. Pulled several mountain passes 10-12K ft earlier with no sweat. Downhill with gearing down and occasional tap on brakes equally unstressful. No speed or fuel economy records but good safe travel. Wind seems to be a huge factor. I'm thinking about a nice streamlined storage pod to free up a little space in TV and add some wind deflection. Then the problem will be to not add another thing and eliminate some before the next trip.

The cook and housekeeper has had a lot of problems getting used to lack of space and keeping away from clutter. Simple is better but then when you need something- you want it! We will be working on this problem forever.

Our plans have us in IN next month and then back to AZ by early September. I think there is no argument that the recliner and the big shower will fell mighty nice.

Terry L.

Terry & Nancy L
Travlin' Kitty; Ashley (has been from Fairbanks to Guadalajara)
2008 X-189 FBS Newbie
2005 Toyota 4Runner V-8
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