Roadtrek Modifications

Updated 2/26/13

Hello and thank you for visiting. This page is a compendium of modifications made by Roadtrek owners to their units. Thanks to everyone who contributed to this project. Each posting has been assigned an arbitrary number and the name of the poster is including at the beginning of each submission. Each submission is separated from the others by a horizontal line.

There are three ways to use this page. First, you can just browse through the postings and images from beginning to end. Second, you can use the table below to select a specific topic of interest and go directly to the submissions by clicking on the number. Some contributors included several types of modifications and therefore you'll see the same posting numbers appear more than once in the table. Finally, there's an index of contributors and you can click on a name to see their submission.

This is a rather long page and a link is provided at the end of each submission to get you back to the beginning of the Topic table.

Roger and Lynn Brucker submitted a 13 page list of modifications and enhancements to their 1995 Roadtrek 190 Popular. It was too long to put into this summary but is available by clicking on this link. It's in PDF format. They have other modifications on their web site: http://www.redroverroadtrek.com/

To contact me just use the following address. No, you can't click on it: Too many spam harvesters out there!

 

Topic
Submission Number
Reworked and reconfigured space 2-2, 5, 9-3, 12, 14, 18-1, 19-1, 24-1
Storage solutions 3-1, 9-1, 9-2, 10, 12, 19-2, 20-7, 22-2
Hanging clothes and closets 7, 20-8, 22-1
Lighting 2-6, 3-3
Flooring 2-7, 11, 22-3, 24-2
Electrical and instrumentation 1, 3-2, 16, 20-4
Solar and batteries 2-1, 3-6, 15, 22-4
Kitchen and Cooking 9-3, 20-3, 23
Sleeping and beds 2-5, 20-6
Curtains 2-3, 20-5, 20-7
Water, macerator and sewer 2-4, 6, 18-2
Safety, health and convenience 3-4, 3-5, 13, 20-2, 20-9, 25
TV 1, 4, 3-3
Heating 17, 3-2
Brakes, tires, suspension 8
Bathroom 20-1

Contributors
Adamé, Susan
Ashworth, Rick
Bass, Steve and Judy
Beck, Carole
Brown, Edwina
Campanella, MaryAnn and Ed
Contos, Stephanie
Edwards, Stan and Carolyn
Farkas, Mary
Gibbs, Graham
Hankins, Sue
Lea, Cathy
Lentz, Wally
McGee, William
McIntyre, Carolyn
Melideo, Tom and Beverly
Newton, Jim
Nixon, Susan
Oberhoffer, Christine
Rizzuto, Joe and Judi
Roselinsky, Myra
Schroeder, Tom
Taylor, John and Skipper
Taylor, Ken
Trachtenberg, Dennis
Troxel, Carolyn and Jerry
Weston, Claire
Wignes, Ron and Carolyn
Yacklon, Pat

Submission 1: Stan (WA4DYD) & Carolyn Edwards

Earlier I have posted links to photos of the replacement of the internal TV antenna with one of the Winegard antennas as a DIY project, an adapter for a 50A RV receptacle to handle two 30A units, reverse engineered the TrippLite remote for the charger-inverter, and documented the installation of my amateur radio installation and CB in our 210P. You can check them out at:
www.picasaweb.google.com/wa4dyd.

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Submission 2: Carolyn McIntyre

I have five modifications that I am particularly happy with in my 2000 Dodge 190 popular.

2-1: The first is that I had two 100 W solar panels installed on the roof by a company in Springfield, Oregon. The name of the company is AM Solar. This was four years ago, and the system has worked very well for me since I spend about nine months of the year traveling, and I boondock a lot. Recently I upgraded the system to include two 6 V golf cart AGM batteries which greatly increased the number of amp hours I have available. I had to abandon my battery box because these two batteries were too big by half an inch. But we placed them in the storage area under the bed and it hasn't changed how much I can store in that area at all. I was pleasantly surprised by that result.

My next modification will be to install a three stage converter, so that the batteries will get trickle charged to maximum capacity either by the solar panels or by shore power when I'm plugged in. This will make my batteries last a lot longer.

2-2: The second modification is one that accommodates me as a solo traveler. The front passenger seat is pretty useless to me. I removed it, and replaced it with a console that has a place for my printer, a storage area for my computer, a drawer for computer supplies and paper, and a pullout drawer that is a shelf that I can use as a little table when I'm in the third seat which is behind where the front passenger seat was located. I also made a canvas hanging pocket thingy which attaches to the side of this console, that I can reach from the drivers seat which holds my computer glasses, maps including the current gazetteer for whatever state I'm traveling in, binoculars, and my portable 350 watt inverter.

Note: I used the same hardware that attached the passenger seat to the mounting box to hold the computer console in place. It is very secure. There is a false floor above that which provides a place for the printer to live.

Note: when I still was traveling with the front passenger seat installed, I often wanted a fold-down table on the back of that seat much like you see in airplanes so that when I was sitting in the third seat I would have a little place to put things, without having to pull out the table that lives behind the driver's seat.

2-3: The third modification relates to my curtains. The original curtains came with vinyl slider tape which tends to deteriorate rather quickly in the southwestern sun. I have had to replace several segments of that vinyl slider tape numerous times. I finally called RECMAR, the company that makes this tape and asked them if they had a similar tape that was on a fabric backing. They said, "why yes we do. It comes on a three-quarter inch wide webbing."Of course this isn't listed on their website. It's not terribly cheap, I think I spent about $65 getting enough to replace all of the vinyl tape on my curtains. I like the final result, and I don't think I'm going to have to replace anything for a long time. I did tell Roadtrek about this and they said they were going to look into the possibility of using this product in the future.

2-4: The fourth modification is that I had my local RV shop modify the dump tube so that it operates like many non-macerator type dump outfits on RVs. I carry an 8 foot long dump hose in my outside storage bin and when I go to dump my tanks, I take off the cap, mount the hose and proceed to dump. I found the original hose stuffed inside of the long tube to be totally unsatisfactory. Too often the hose wasn't long enough, and it failed within about a year. This modified system has worked flawlessly for five years.

2-5: And finally, the fifth modification that I love is that I am short enough to sleep across the width of the van. I have modified the bed arrangement so that I have a single wide bed across the back. This allows easy access to my storage drawers and my electrical panel and I don't have to do anything to the bed in the morning except tidy it up. I never arrange the back of the van so that there is a table and bench seats. I just leave the bed in place. Works great for me.

2-6: I have made a couple of other minor modifications. One is that I replaced all of the interior light bulbs with LEDs. This has made a huge difference in the amount of power I have available during the long dark nights of winter. I chose a soft yellow color of LEDs so the light is more like what is put out by the original incandescent lightbulbs. I don't like the harsh blue light that many LEDs offer.

2-7: Based on another solo trekker's advice, I bought some special foam flooring that is used in martial arts studios and installed it on the main floor in the RV. I don't use my shower so this makes the floor very comfy to walk on and warmer in the winter.

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Submission 3: MaryAnn & Ed Campanella

3-1: We put in cabinet slide out racks to hold items and get at items easier without having to do deep knee bends. They pull out and install with only 2 screws and Lowe's sells them for (around $25 each. We have them in our household cabinets as well. Makes bending over easy.

3-2: We also installed 2 $10 indoor outdoor thermometer from Walmart Housewares department. One is for monitoring the fridge temp and the second one is near the bed heater controls under the light. I put a sensor outside inside the spare tire so at night we can monitor the cabin and outside temp. We also draw the shower curtain across the "hallway' at night to make the heating more efficient, assuming the furnace is near the bed. You can't do that if the furnace is forward as I think it is in some units.

3-3: Also replaced all lamps with LEDs, and we strap the TV with a bungie cord for travel.

3-4: We also keep 2 FMCA recommended fire extinguishers in sight and easy to get. One is behind the faucet.

3-5: Also, if there are no children traveling with you, put a piece of tape over the "child" door switch so you don't get locked in :-) - We haven't taped it over yet, but we did get stuck inside when a visitor threw the switch on leaving.....fortunately a passerby opened the door for us.

3-6: We also do not travel without a professional 12 volt battery jumper-umper back up battery. It is rechargeable and also has a compressor and light. We have had to use it many times to jump the engine battery. Not so much now that we got a new battery and we now run the Roadie each week for 20 mins when it is not on the road. We also run the generator once a month.

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Submission 4: Susan Adamé

We have a very low satellite that is fantastic. It is called a TracVision 7.

We can get Direct TV anywhere we can see the southern sky. We never have to align anything since it is all done automatically. If we wanted to we could actually watch TV while the rig moving. It is a very low profile so it is not any higher than the fan that came with our 2007 210 Pop. You can see it here http://www.thegpsstore.com/KVH-TracVision-A7-Vehicle-Satellite-TV-Antenna.aspx?gclid=CI656qfYw7QCFUxxQgodpkcARw

It is easy to use and you don't have to store anything to get satellite TV. It is not cheap, but worthwhile.

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Submission 5: Carolyn and Jerry Troxel

We downsized from a 36 ft class A to our 2011 210 POP. The only thing I really missed was some kind of night stand for eyeglasses, remote controls, books, watches, iPhone etc. I found this very attractive cabinet from Ballarddesigns.com, Item number AE257, price $79. We decided to temporarily remove the microwave so we could bolt the cabinet firmly on the wall that separates the microwave and bed. (We sure to reinstall the microwave carefully.) I then attached a strap across it using screw-in snaps to make sure everything stays in place while traveling. An added benefit is that we can charge the iPhone and the iPad from here since plug is just below cabinet.


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Submission 6: Claire Weston

I replaced the push button to run the macerator with an on/off switch. It is spliced right in to the line to the button and can be returned back to original at any time. Instead of having to stand and hold the button I just flip the switch. This is a big advantage when it is raining etc.

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Submission 7: Tom and Beverly Melideo

We have a 2000 190V with four seats. We put a closet bar behind the driver's seat. It is high enough so as not to stop one from using the seat when you have four passengers. When just the two of us travel we have a place to hang up things that do not go well in the closet. Have used this on two Roadtreks. It works well for us.

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Submission 8: Rick Ashworth

The most important improvement I have made to my RT is to re-spring the suspension. I added new front coils that are 4 inches higher (and beefier) than the stock springs. Likewise I added additional leafs to the rear springs to equalize the height and provide better support for our overweight vehicle. I now have 11 ½ inches road clearance; the same as with my Subaru Outback. It takes a very experienced suspension company to take on this job but is a great improvement. Cost, with performance shocks, was about $1,700.

This spring I am changing my brakes to high performance slotted and drilled rotors and high performance pads to improve the abysmal braking I currently have. I am having it done at Henderson's Line Up in Grants Pass, Oregon. Estimated cost is $1,000.

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Submission 9: Mary Farkas

I have a year 2000 190V, Dodge and I LOVE my little buggy.

Here are 5 photos of the changes I've made:

9-1: Photos #1 & 2: I made "hanging clothes" space next to the toilet into my "toilette", with a wash basin (large stainless bowl Velcro'd to a ~30 inch 2 layer cube). This allows me to "bathe" in the basin and my towels have a place to rest. Above my wash basin I glued 2 holders for shampoo, toothpaste, soap, etc.



9-2: Photo #3: I took out the old TV and VCR machines (I don't really watch TV and prefer to read or use the computer) and this previous TV/VCR space became my extra food storage place. It's very handy as it's right next to the stove!



9-3: Photos #4 & 5: Here is the thing I'm proudest of! I took out the seat behind the driver's seat (actually I hired a carpenter to do the work) and made a kitchen counter top. It's finished with some wonderful stuff that's heatproof and waterproof (thus the wood is protected) and the legs support it. The bumpy rubber stuff on the counter top keeps EVERYTHING in place when driving.


As you can see, on the left hand side, I installed a large Rubbermaid 3 drawer storage container which holds my spices, pots and pans, and all of the extra kitchen tools that need a home.

You can also see that I installed a $6.00 magnetized knife holder which houses my chef's knife, scissors, etc. when I'm camped (I remove the sharp items when I drive). To the right of the Rubbermaid container is a great space for extra storage, and that's where I put the metal clothes hanger that I took out of my "toilette".

Everyone who comes into my RT just oooh's and awww's when they see how much extra room I have in my kitchen. Oh, and did I mention that I'm a good cook?

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Submission 10: Carole Beck

I got metal wire pullout shelves that attached to the 2 shelves in the cupboard. Makes it soooo much easier to reach everything in the cupboard, even things are way in the back. I was lucky and found exactly the right size at Costco one time when I was there, but I have seen them at Home Depot, only they cost twice as much.

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Submission 11: Tom Schroeder Tomsch23@aol.com

Here's one for your book. I'd been wanting to do something with the floor in my 2005 RT 190p. It felt a little spongy in front of the cook top and we also kept tripping over the throw rugs the previous owners had put on the floor. One day, while looking around a discount flooring and tile place, we spotted a sole package of wood flooring that was marked down to (would you believe) just over six bucks. Couldn't pass up a good deal and as it turned out, it was plenty for the RT floor with a few boards left over.

Overall, installation was pretty simple. The only time consuming part was leveling it out so the boards fit properly and smooth. (The floor is slightly different from one side of the shower drain to the other.) We don't use the shower in the RT, so flooring over the drain was no big deal. Now, when we need a shower, we wait for it to rain and then just run up and down the freeway for a few minutes. LOL...just kiddin'.

Anyway, the new floor is great. It's easier to clean than the fiberglass and it feels more natural under foot.

Mockup on garage floor.
Halfway done (the yellow is padding goes under the
flooring) The plywood is for leveling.
The before shot.
and after --- the project result.

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Submission 12: Dennis Trachtenberg and Stephanie Contos

One our favorite adaptations/modifications to our 2007 210 Versatile is replacing the passenger seat behind the driver's seat with a bench storage unit. Dennis built the unit out of light maple to match our cabinets and included a drawer and four shelves. We bought baskets for storage that fit the shelves and used a disassembled RT mattress for cushions. We left the seatbelt so a third person can still sit there when the RT is in motion. It has definitely expanded our storage capacity and I love to curl up there with a good book or take a nap. It can also be converted into a bunkie bed for when our granddaughter travels with us.


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Submission 13: John Taylor & Skipper

I finally (after 12 yrs) got around to modifying wiring to allow front windows to operate without the ignition on. Should have done this years ago. But perhaps the model is so out of date (Dodge 1998 Popular) as to be of little current interest.

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Submission 14: Joe & Judi Rizzuto

We like our 1998 Popular's night stand, but find that setting up the table between the beds was not worth the effort for meals and ended up eating separately on the 3rd seat and on the bed. The idea of a table conversion originated from Florida's Sue Baker via Tom Jones.

Joe made a third drawer to fit on the bottom of the existing drawers and added a sliding top. Now the two of us can eat together in the back of the van for all of our meals. Extend the top as far as feasible and we have a very cozy foursome. Or add a small chair on the front and we have a little roomier threesome.

More importantly. It fits both of our laptops.

Front
Detail of new top
Clamped for driving
Back of night stand
Table set for dinner

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Submission 15: Cathy Lea

Solar Panels on our Roadtrek

Our Roadtrek 200 Popular is the perfect size RV for the two of us. But we were novice RV owners and had to learn some lessons the hard way. The first six years we traveled like many other RVers, forced to hop from one campground to the next and one electric plug to the next. Our attempts at dry camping and living off our house battery were not very successful. We ended up hurting the house battery in ways that, until recently, we didn't fully understand.

Thinking Solar:
We started thinking about solar after attending a western RV workshop where, thanks to Phil-the-solar-guy, we saw solar panels on a Roadtrek for the first time. Being the analytical type I tried to determine how long it would take to break even considering how many nights we could spend without paying for a campground with a hookup. I decided that if it cost less than $1500 it would probably be worth doing, but I still wasn't convinced.

On our trip to Yellowstone and points Northwest we burned out our second house battery. The first time we burned out our house battery it was our fault because we didn't fully understand what it meant to run a lead-acid gel battery down to zero. The second time it wasn't directly our fault. A folding chair bumped one of the lights in our storage area under the rear of the coach and turned the light on despite our best effort to duct tape the switch closed. (Lesson: duct tape is not a long term solution. Remove the bulb!)

The sealed gel-type battery was so damaged by the constant load and frequent deep discharge that the sides were swelling out. If you don't understand the danger in this picture, think of our battery filling up like a balloon with hydrogen and oxygen (both very flammable gases) under pressure. What do you think would have happened when it finally popped? All I can say is be nice to your battery and you may never need to answer that question.

Getting Solar:
Now that we were forced to get a new house battery anyway, I decided it was time to add solar to our rig. I was still thinking we could do it for about $1,500.00 so we headed off to AM Solar in Eugene, Oregon. Dave, the head AM Solar installation guy, designed the whole system to fit. Even though our needs for power were small enough that we probably could have used just one panel we decided on two AM-100 panels so we could get plenty of energy to keep going even on very cloudy days or when parked under trees. We prefer sites with shade whenever possible.

We ended up with two AM-100 Solar Panels, two 6 volt 220Ah AGM batteries (moved to the storage area in the rear of the coach just above the fresh water input), an HPV22 Charge Controller and one XBM Xantrax Battery Monitor. The XBM monitor was an extra item I hadn't counted on but as soon as they brought out the instruction manual and I saw the gleam in Casey's eye I knew we were getting that too. I'm really glad I did, it lets us see in real time what is happening to our house batteries including the temperature which is important so charging is done slower when the batteries are hot. I love looking at it after a whole day and night of sitting in one place doing everything we need to do on battery power and knowing that we still have about 90% of our capacity still available.

Our Needs:
Our energy needs are quite simple. We run the water pump, a laptop computer, charge the consumer electronics batteries (phone, cameras, walkie-talkies, etc.), use a few lights in the evenings and the Fantastic Fan™ when it gets warm. Occasionally we might turn on the LCD TV to catch a local program if we are within reception range. Because of these simple needs we haven't installed a large whole-house inverter, we just use a 300 watt inverter that plugs into the 12 volt outlet in the TV cabinet.

We now camp for any number of days without having to run the car engine or generator. I don't worry about having to trade gas for electricity just to charge up our batteries and we no longer add to the air and noise pollution for our neighbors. I ended up spending eight hours of waiting for the installation and almost $3,000 when it was all over. Our small Roadtrek required a lot of coordination and dancing between the installers, thus more hours of labor so labor was a big part of the cost.

Solar Realized:
Now that we have used solar power for a while on trips all over this country, I realize that the cost savings isn't the most important part. The freedom solar power gives us is way beyond the price. We can spend a whole day parked in a very scenic spot where I can hike, stare out the window, fix breakfast, lunch and dinner and Casey can spend the whole day on the computer without using up any battery power in the house batteries.

This is my new found freedom and it is priceless!

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Submission 16: Jim Newton

To protect the electrical systems and equipment on our Roadtrek, we added the Progressive Industries portable power protection box to our slide out compartment. Although it is portable, it fits nicely in the compartment where it is protected from the elements and theft. I built a short cable to go from the box to our twist lock power receptacle and then use a 25 foot 30 amp cable to connect from the campground power pedestal to the box. It senses voltage, polarity, ground and frequency and also functions as a surge protector. We have had it protect us several times – once for over voltage and another for polarity. It is fairly expensive but well worth it for the protection it provides. A picture of our installation is attached.

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Submission 17: Steve and Judy Bass Steve Bass <stevebass@earthlink.net>

The king-sized bed on our '93 POP 190 is permanently left in place. The problem is that the furnace pushes hot air under the bed and it doesn't get to us (and doesn't do the items we've stored under the bed any good).

I had a duct company fabricate a duct to move the hot air from the furnace's output under the bed and out into the van.

The fabricator took the measurements and the job was ready in about three days. It cost $75.

Installation was easy: I removed the vent from the furnace, placed the duct against the furnace opening and held it in place with a single sheet metal screw that screws into the wood around the furnace.

I'm going to cover the duct with foil-backed insulation before our next trip.

There was some discussion on one of the YahooGroups that the fresh air flow was blocked as it was in the same opening as the duct work. It turns out there's another vent on the side of the furnace.

The duct attached to furnace opening with one screw.

This is looking from the front of the van (fridge on the right and bathroom on the left). There's storage to the left of the duct (you can see the small DC fan); we shove Judy's birding tripod and stick a lawn chair in that spot.

This is what the duct looks like when it's attached to the furnace.

This is the furnace opening and where duct attaches to the furnace. You can see that same DC fan. You can also see the duct's indentation in the carpeting.

This is looking into the duct if you were the furnace.

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Submission 18: Ken Taylor, 2011 SS Agile.

18-1: Removed left side of a hitch-haul (under tire) added valuable storage (infra red grill !!!!!!)

18-2: RT dealer at my request, moved water inlet valve up side of body to go in just under sink. Re-routed hot water line from pump to hot water heater inside body. He used small plywood strips with carpet to cover lines in back of the sofa/bed and in the rear storage area. Line was against upright wall so strip angled from floor to upright. Resulted in all water lines in "heated area" except line from water tank to pump.

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Submission 19: Susan Nixon & Wally Lentz nixon002@umn.edu

19-1: Tabletop added to spare tire. Made with painted plywood, attached in middle through tire with bolt so that it stays in place when lifted up to its traveling position. As you can see in the second picture we have the propane hose and it makes a very convenient place to use our grill/stove. It is also a good general purpose table that can be very quickly "set up".

It's very easy to make as long as you have a way to get the plywood cut in a circle (we got my brother to cut it for us, the concept was Wally's idea).
19-2: Alternate location to store awning support and crank since under the bed in back they always fall off when storing items. This way one doesn't need to open the back (and for us this means swinging the bike rack out) to access them. Much handier. Velcro (loop side) put around the support and the crank towards each end and the hook part attached to the wall. Also soft Velcro put on the floor so that the floor and the ends of the support and crank would be protected.
Additional shelf in storage area in bathroom (probably only for 170 & 190s). This was a bit of leftover board, I think masonite, that was in the basement. It already had a smooth finished side. I painted the rough side with a similar color. I tried to glue the leg and the side supports together but it didn't hold on the smooth surface and the masonite doesn't do well with screws but it just sits there with tension. This allows us to move the short support on the right to accommodate different sized items. Generally our 2 toiletry kits are on the bottom area to the left of the small support.
Storage of screen tent. Heavy wide Velcro hooks side on wall, soft wrapped around the tent in 2 or 3 places. With heat some Velcro didn't stay on the wall so now we have 2 straps that go around the cabinet holding the tent to the cabinet. Wouldn't work if the driver has really long legs. Only works with the extra cabinet for a Versatile.
"Shelves" for empty box of a storage cabinet for a Versatile. Right half left for hanging items.
Shelf for the underbed storage from the back to make it easier to get to different items. Usually we have our bike bags on the top shelf and always have our 2 chairs and small table underneath. I originally had one for the other side and for the small middle area, but then we bought an inflatable kayak and it takes up all the height on the left side.

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Submission 20: Christine Oberhoffer chris oberhoffer <ober21c@yahoo.com>

 
20-1: Put a white jacket zipper on your shower curtain. Just pull the curtain around you, zip from bottom up to the faucets, and shower keeping water in with you!
20-2 Put baby socks over the rolled up seat belts behind the couch at storage area. Keep the seat belts clean, rolled up and out of the way to some degree when using the storage area. I actually found gray ones at JC Penneys that match my 2011 decor.
20-3: Silicone cookie sheet placed on the glass top stove cover or the counter. Keeps everything in place and low profile things will stay there even when driving on curvy roads. Also can stay on the glass top cover even when cooking because the cookie sheet is made to take 450 degree backing.
20-4: Extension outlet is about around 9 inches long and purchased at Walmart. Just plug into the outlet at the step and you can easily plug in a computer or ceramic heater without opening the side door and going outside at night to find the darn outlet. The cord glows so it makes a nice step light when entering the Roadtrek at night. Can use on galley outlet when the toaster cord doesn't quite reach too.
20-5: Cover one side of your silver bubble window insulation covers to add a little color or personality to the interior of your Roadtrek when you don't want sun, cold and street lights coming in the windows. Cut the silver bubble insulation which can be purchased at Camping World or just buy some windshield covers at Walmart and cut the size and shape you need for the windows. Fabric can be sewn or glued. I sewed mine using some seam tape to finish the edges. See Fish fabric on window by the sink in the second image (the one with the silicone cookie sheet).
20-6: Get the bed a little longer on the 190 Pop and fill in the gap at the top of the bed when the couch and the back doors don't meet up. Cut two 24 to 25 inch long pieces of foam 5" by 4 1/2" or 5" square fat and cover with fabric or a pillow case wrapped around it. Found foam at JoAnns Fabrics.
 
Use old dishwasher utensil baskets to store small items keeping them handy and rightside up. The long narrow ones fits along side the toilet, in the little shelf that runs above the side entrance door and above the driver's door. One of mine holds dish soap, sponges, etc and can be easily moved from under the sink to counter and back when needed.
 
Beautiful Amish basket storage
 
20-8: Some people buy a pressure shower curtain rod to hang wet clothes, towel, etc. on. Some use it with a long dark sheet to keep the back of the Roadtrek unseen when parked and don't want to appear camping by using the windshield curtains. Here are pictures of a car clothing carrier rod that turned upside down will fit in the side storage rails in the front of the roadtrek. Can be used for rain coats and shower towel's while camped or to utilize windshield sun to finish the drying process when the laundromat dryer needs only 1/2 a quarter!!!

20-9: Just thought of another one for you. Someone showed me this a couple of years ago and it works really well. Don't know who to give the credit too.

Here's a solution for keeping the Velcro attached to the Roadtrek clean so the screens will work: Those who use the screens find that the Velcro on the metal rig gets full of dirt and then the screen Velcro doesn't want to stick. Buy enough black Velcro at a fabric store to cover all existing strips on the back and side doors of the roadtrek. Discard the part that is like the stuff stuck to the Roadtrek and use only the part that is like the stuff on the screen. Put the new Velcro down over the stuff on the Roadtrek to protect it. When ready to install the screens for camping just take the protector Velcro off (remember to save it somewhere) while screens are in place. When storing screens, simply replace your protector Velcro strip. You may need to replace the sticky part of the Velcro installed on the metal part of your Roadtrek if you can't get it clean before you use this trick for the first time.

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Submission 21: Graham Gibbs

I have modified our 2004 Roadtrek 190 Popular spare tire carrier with an Ezee-Lift to make access to the rear storage compartment easier. The Ezee-Lift is a spring-loaded mechanism that is relatively easy to install and becomes part of the existing Roadtrek spare wheel raising and lowering mechanism. It makes the spare wheel appear to only weigh 20 lbs so no more risk of a hernia when lowering or raising it! George the designer and supplier has done a great job and it works as advertised. I highly recommend it. See www.ezee-lift.com/


(Image borrowed from the Ezee-lift site. Dave)

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Submission 22: Sue Hankins and Pat Yacklon

22-1: Clothes Bar:
It's used in back seats of cars to hang clothes. It's adjustable and fits overhead across the front. The ends of the bar have a rubber hook that fits over the edge of the wood. You can move it to hang wet clothes and when you are not using it: just push it back up against the front. Walmart. About $15

22-2: Chrome Expanding Shelf:
It's used for dishes. But we have it in the rear storage area under the sofa. Our Coleman grill and 2-burner stove fit under it. Then we can keep things on top of the shelf and take the grills out without moving everything else. It expands from 20 inches to 34 inches. We bought 2 and hooked them together so they would be wide enough. Lowe's. Under $10

22-3: Wall to wall carpet in the hallway and bathroom:
We made a pattern and took it to our carpet dealer who carries remnants. We had the edges bound. We can take the carpets out to clean them.

22-4: Solar Battery Maintainer:
Sits on the dash and plugs into the power plug. When you are not using it, put it up in the small overhead compartment in front. Coleman, 2-watt, 12-volt. I ordered it at Walmart.com, (our store didn't carry it) and then picked it up at the store. $29

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Submission 23: Myra Roselinsky and Edwina Brown

We carry an induction cooking plate, a small electrical appliance that fits perfectly on the cutting board which is placed over the two propane burners and plugs in on the galley wall. Also works great outside plugged into the campsite pole or the plug inside the side door.

This cooking plate creates a force with cooking vessels made out of steel and iron. Check out the science at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Induction_cooking

Available on Amazon, eBay and markets that carry Asian foods and kitchen items.

Boils water in half the time of the propane burner and can be used to stir fry, gently cook eggs, make soup...any cooking task for which we have the proper cooking vessel. Especially useful in the summer when cooking inside the RT because it puts off almost no heat as opposed to the propane burner.

Cannot be used while running the A/C, microwave or a small cube style electric heater because of the power draw.

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Submission 24: Ron & Carolyn Wignes "Ron Wignes" <rwignes@yahoo.com>

24-1: Our favorite addition to our recently acquired 2006 190 Popular is a kitchen style cabinet with counter top that replaces the 2nd row lounge seat cushions. The lounge seat pedestal remains, with its very handy storage drawer and the new cabinet uses the pedestal as its base. The cabinet is secured on top of the pedestal and features: counter top space, under counter top storage, two open storage bins (one to hold the wastebasket) and an easy access power strip for an appliance and/or gadget chargers. In the short time we’ve had the 190, we’ve actually built three additional options for the lounge seat space, but this is our favorite for our traveling time. (At the end of this article, I’ll summarize the other two)

Picture 1 shows the cabinet when entering the 190. A key design requirement was to leave adequate shoulder/body space when entering or leaving the rig. Note that the two open bins are low and thus leave all the space above them open for entering and leaving. The power strip is visible and is up near the top for access. It is plugged into the existing outlet box below the pedestal. (One could use a standard outlet box and recess it into the body of the cabinet.) Picture 2 shows the cabinet from the inside with its counter top space for the coffee pot, the two under cabinet storage shelves, and an under the top pull out drawer unit that I purchased and installed.

The shelves have enough of a lip to keep items in the storage space, while leaving enough of an opening for ease of access. This cabinet remedies two primary issues we had when traveling: Where to put the coffee pot (or similar appliance) so it’s not in the way of the main sink area working space and where to put the waste basket? The counter top is the perfect answer to the coffee pot issue and the larger open bin was specifically sized to hold a wastebasket but can obviously be used to suit one’s needs. In addition, the cabinet added easy access to a surge-protected power strip for charging phones and the strip is purposely placed just below the counter top for use by the coffee pot.

The other key feature is the versatile under counter storage shelves and all the while retaining the base pedestal with its own handy drawer. As to material and the like, ½" plywood is the primary material. The open bin sides use ½” pine board because it’s superior for finishing purposes and is more uniform. Half inch thick trim pieces dress up the exposed edges of the plywood. The top is a leftover ¾” piece of pre-laminated MDF board trimmed out. Instead of trying to match the interior stain, I opted to match the charcoal color of the exterior ground effect bodywork, and thus give a contrasting color to the interior.

The unit mounts to both the pedestal and the bathroom wall and is secure and rattle free. The four existing screws in the pedestal that mount the seat cushion are used as well as the seat back bracket on the bathroom wall. However, unlike the seat cushions that fit into a routered lip on the inside of the pedestal, this cabinet sits atop of the pedestal and attaches using cleats fastened to the underside of the cabinet bottom that are fabricated to fit into the routed lip of the pedestal side. Careful work here insures that the cabinet fits perfectly and snugly. One other construction note is that the pedestal base is higher in front than in back and that angle has to be factored in when cutting out the components. We enjoy this addition and I’d be happy to provide more details to those who may be interested.

24-2: Two Other Roadtrek Additions: As mentioned at the top, we’ve added two other options to the lounge seat area. The first is configuring the rig to transport a wheel chair bound individual and the second is a storage cabinet that replaced the entire lounge seat system. The wheel chair configuration is achieved by first removing the entire second row lounge seat, then inserting a custom raised floor over the lowered Roadtrek fiberglass floor so that the wheelchair rides almost level, and using a purchased set of telescoping ramps to load the wheelchair individual into the van. Picture 3 shows the raised floor components.

The floor had to be in sections in order to easily put them in place. It fits very snugly and does not shift or rattle. The floor is ¾” plywood covered with an indoor/outdoor carpet and with ¾” riser blocks (4-6” sections of 1x3 lumber) to achieve the needed height. (The riser blocks have felt padding on the bottom to prevent scratching the Roadtrek fiberglass floor.) A key element of this is securing the wheel chair for travel. I worked out a system using cam-lock cargo straps to lash the wheel chair in place in several dimensions so that it does not shift while traveling. The existing seat belt is then used around the individual for the personal restraint system. During travel the telescoping ramps (10 ft extended – 5 ft collapsed) are stored crossways in the back storage area. The spare tire had to be removed and store elsewhere. This worked flawlessly for many uses, including long distance travel with a wheel chair-bound individual. A word of caution is necessary as to this method. It’s necessary to ensure that the wheel chair is secure and it’s not recommended for use by anyone not sure about their ability to get the wheel chair adequately secured. Again, I can provide more information for anyone interested.

The last addition is a small cabinet (Picture 4) that completely replaces the lounge seat and pedestal. The bottom bin, open on two sides to the inside, was sized to serve double duty as either a holder for a litter pan for our cats, or a storage bin. Above the bin is a storage box, with a lift off top. The top is covered with a padded cloth material that can be used as a sitting spot for a pet. It fastens to the floor of the van using the same four mounting screws as the pedestal. The back of the cabinet fastens to the front wall of the bathroom making it very secure and rattle free.

So that is an overview of our “favorite” addition plus two other quite useful additions to our Roadtrek 190.

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Submission 25: William McGee

I have a 2006 Roadtrek RS Adventurous twin bed model which I have driven over 87,000 miles. This is my fourth Roadtrek. I have driven to every U.S. State except Hawaii and every Canadian province.

When Theda had trouble walking and she needed an electric scooter, I decided I did not want to carry a scooter on the back of the RV where it would e exposed to the weather. I found out that a scooter with the seat removed and the tiller folded down would fit in the back of our Roadtrek as the pictures show.

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