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Old 09-13-2005, 05:07 PM   #1
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Tenaja, California
Posts: 92
Lyle & Cath:

Thank you for your interest. The below is a new link, apparently the old one expires after a period of time.

http://share.shutterfly.com/action/w...=8EYuGTlwybP7g

Original Post:

Originally posted by Indio:
I have taken some pictures of most of the little fixes/improvements I have made to our Coach, and would very much like to share with any that may find them helpful.

I'll try to be as brief as possible, and list them by photo number. If any aditional information is needed, please let me know, and I will forward by email. Listed in CAPS at the end of each number is where I aquired the item.

Enjoy

1-2. If you find a need for an additional 115v receptacle on the right side of curbside basement, this will eliminate running extension cords.
3. If you have the Bose Radio in the bedroom. Using a hole saw, it is pretty easy to route the cables through counter up to the TV. Great Sound for bedroom TV. Hole covers are from FRYS ELECTRONICS
4-9. Computer Desk: After looking at what a number of other people have done, this is what I came up with for my particular needs. HOME SHOP
10. A Cordless Vacuum comes in handy for the quick little clean up jobs. On the left of the Vanity Slide there is just enough room to mount, you can get power (hole saw) from the laundry center.CAMPING WORLD
11-17. CurbSide Basement: Used Kwikee HD units. Figured the maximum use of the basement floor to determind what sizes I wanted. Layed everything out I wanted to put in the compartment on the driveway, started cutting/sawing, and glueing until everything had a home. CAMPING WORLD. Note photo 15, if you want adequate light on the patio, this fixture works great. You will have to cut (tin snipes) a recess hole in order to mount flush. CAMPING WORLD
18. Cutting Board: The two Koridan covers for the stove top that came with the unit were always coming off. One instance during an hard braking suituation, I almost got one in the back of the head. Bought a pre-fab board, 1/2"larger than the opening, knotched the side and back to fit in, added the bull nose. Four little Velcro strips keep it in place. Great for extra counter space, and the board is aways there. When it gets a little cut up, I just take the sander to freshen up. CONTAINER STORE
19. Cutting Knifes: Three of these magnet blocks do the trick. Have never had one fly off. LINENS & THINGS
20-21. CurbSide Drapes: I found it always a pain to keep pulling the entire section back and forth to exit. Ran into a very nice Alpine couple in Zion that I got this idea from. There is a seam in the exact spot that separates at the door. Just undid the seam and re-stiched, added three Velcro stripes for closure.
22. Drawers,Cabinets: Spent almost an entire weekend carpeting everything in the coach. What a difference it made for noise abatement. Very few rattles going gdown the road. HOME DEPOT
23. Drivers Side Basement Slider (back view). One unit holds patio carpet, four table chairs, table, Colman Grill. All from CAMPING WORLD
24-25. Hair Dryer: I'm the kind of guy that likes a place for everything. Saves pulling it out each time and winding up the cord. Wiring directly into the receptacle (cut a little notch in base plate) saves for an extra plug. CAMPING WORLD
26-27. HD Receiver: (Dish 811) Not the unit that came with the coach, but will get HD Reception on satellite #110. What a difference. Had to cut back of cabinet and carpet in order for it to fit. If you have the problem we experience, receiver freezes up due to over heating. This little 3/4" LapTop Cooler works great. FRYS ELECTRONICS
28. Holding Tank Vents: After installing these, I have never had a odor smell inside the coach. Color Matched to roof line. CAMPING WORLD
29. Dual Thermometer: Battery operated. Easy to route outside probe behind window valance, push through the brush closure on the window. LINENS & THINGS
30. Keys: Conveinent place to always know where they are. HOME DEPOT
31-32. Awning Light: If you are like me, and want to have everything setup up as quickly as possible, this works. The Rope Light is not quite enough to read under, but great for most everything else. I cut it the exact lenght of the casing, then just roll it up inside the awning. It causes a small dis-configuration, but I have operated mine a hunded times with no probelms. In shortening the rope you will loose the first and last foot of lights. Fix: Take a short piece of #14-16 wire, strip just 1/4" off the ends, bend into a U, then push into the cut end to reconnect the wires. A little silicone over the exposed wire holds it in place. CAMPING WORLD
33. Remote Controls: Saves having to plug everything in each time. One for Under Coach, Awning Light, and "Barking Dog" CAMPING WORLD, but LOWES has the smaller one for half the cost.
34. Rope Light Under Coach: Just enough light to keep from tripping over things in the dark. A NEWELL pulled in next to me at a park once that had more lights on it than most Semis, this idead I liked. CAMPING WORLD
35-36. Oil Blow By: Tired of cleaning the oil spots off the end section behind the motor? This works. Use a plastic water bottle (heaviest you can find, the heat will dis-stort the lighter ones), with a slightly less than 7/8" opening, drill a series of holes in top to equal at least the ID of rubber breather hose, slip the bottle on about half way, leaving enough room to catch the oil, but not bottom out.... a little Duct Tape, and you are in business. The picture showing the mount has about 1/2" of oil that has taken about 6 months to collect.
37. Pantry Shelves: Twice the shelves, double the storage. HOME SHOP
38-39. Reading lights: The over head lights in the front of our unit only work with the key on, and are dis-tracting while moving. If you want it to be individual by side, and flexable, these work great. ROBERT BOSCH brand, found somewhere on the WEB
40. Remote Power modual for under coach lighting. LOWES
41. Awning Light Power. A strip of velcro holds modual in place. Don't forget to take down before rolling up awning.
42. Water Proof Receptacle: Spliced into Dryer power on other side of wall, color matched to coach paint. Now I do not have to run extension cords for lights, and also for my George Foreman quicky grill. LOWES
43. Motion Sensor: This is one little great addition for having piece of mind while sleeping in remote areas, or anywhere for that matter. Its a small little box that "Barks Like A Dog", we have it in the cabinet under the Vanity. If anyone approaches the outside, the box lets you know. The nice thing about this Guard Dog, doesnt' require frequent potty stops, and doesnt' eat much. SMARTHOME.COM
44. Rock Guard: There are a number available, this is a nice one, easy to install, and company will put what ever you like in letters. RIVERSIDE ENTERPRISES
44-45. Security System: All Wireless. Have contacts on windows, front door, with motion sensor in living area. Has a ton of features, most you will not use. Need two people to install, one to read instructions (hate that part), another to push buttons. SMARTHOME.COM
47-48. Shoe Storage: These canvas pockets help to keep from having a stack of shoes in the closet, and never finding two that match. If you use one side of the closet for pants, there is enough room on the back wall to mount a second unit. Bought one (12pairs), but none of my shoes got to use it, bought a second and the wife lets me use two pockets.... how woman can have more shoes than there are days of the month, is beyond me.... love them tho. CAMPING WORLD
49-50. Shower Despensers: These save having to always put stuff away. Keeps bottom of shower un-cluttered, especially when your wife has to have something different of everything. HOME DEPOT
51. Bath Sink: Keeps clutter of the counter. As in the kitchen, using a hole saw (drill)to cut, units fill from underneath by un-screwing bottle. Use the more expensive ones, the cheapies at Home Depot do not have a large enough tube to suck up thick lotion. Found these at THE GREAT AMERICAN INDOORS, closely matches the brushed finish on the sink fixtures.
52. Galley Sink: same as Bathroom. Afer trying a number of different polishes, settled on Mothers Plastic Polish. I use it on everything, counters, stainless, shower. Easy on, easy off. MOST AUTO PARTS STOREs
53. Since the Alpine was an upgrade, added a picture of our previous MH. Loved that Southwind. I did a great deal of work on this unit, traded it in on the Alpine, the Dealer sold it the same day for more than I paid for it four years prior.
54-55. Spice Pull Out: After always having to dig in the cabinet, came up with this idea for ease of use. The front is the old door, with pull re-mounted in center. HOME SHOP
56. Stainless support: Kind of hard to see in the picture. Our units basemant had sagged on the outside about one inch, even before adding any weight. The door catches would no longer keep doors locked. Easy fix: Use screw-all rod, cut and drilled through L Bracket underneath, mounted on outboard upper arm. Just tightened until everything was even. HOME DEPOT
57. Drawer Under Sink. Would never stay on track. Added two additional cross section boards underneath for support, and expoxy glued a little block where rail meets back wall. Has never failed since. HOME SHOP
58. Storage: Left side over sink. When I see "Air" in a compartment, I try to put something in it. HOME SHOP
59. Towell Rack. I like the ones that the center section rolls, towels slide on and off easily. I found these at The Great American Indoors, and they match the design and finish of the other fixtures.
60. TV Frame: After one instance of exiting a driveway with a good dip at the curb, our Bedroom TV flew out on the bed. The little block wasnt' enough to hold it. This frame is epoxy gluded to the TV, then screw mounted to the outer cabinet.
HOME SHOP
62-63 Water Soften: One of the best things I have added. Sits right into service bay, easy 300-400 gallon capacity, re-charges in 15-minutes with simple table salt. The straps are for a TV Hold Down available at Camping World. RVUPGRADES.COM
64. Wheel Polish: Have tried most everything available at your local auto parts store. While this product is not the best I have tried, it surely rates as the easiest. DON'T use the cleaner, Simply Green works just fine. Pick up one of the little folding Camping Stools, perfect position, and keeps knees off the hard pavement. RVUPGRADES.COM
65. Wire Covers: Available Home Depot or Lowes. If you have a number of cords/cables, these are two piece and snap together

Hope you have enjoyed reading as much as I enjoyed doing the work....... its fun

Walt


Walt / Julie Darden
2004 Alpine 40FDTS
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Old 09-13-2005, 05:07 PM   #2
Member
 
Indio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Tenaja, California
Posts: 92
Lyle & Cath:

Thank you for your interest. The below is a new link, apparently the old one expires after a period of time.

http://share.shutterfly.com/action/w...=8EYuGTlwybP7g

Original Post:

Originally posted by Indio:
I have taken some pictures of most of the little fixes/improvements I have made to our Coach, and would very much like to share with any that may find them helpful.

I'll try to be as brief as possible, and list them by photo number. If any aditional information is needed, please let me know, and I will forward by email. Listed in CAPS at the end of each number is where I aquired the item.

Enjoy

1-2. If you find a need for an additional 115v receptacle on the right side of curbside basement, this will eliminate running extension cords.
3. If you have the Bose Radio in the bedroom. Using a hole saw, it is pretty easy to route the cables through counter up to the TV. Great Sound for bedroom TV. Hole covers are from FRYS ELECTRONICS
4-9. Computer Desk: After looking at what a number of other people have done, this is what I came up with for my particular needs. HOME SHOP
10. A Cordless Vacuum comes in handy for the quick little clean up jobs. On the left of the Vanity Slide there is just enough room to mount, you can get power (hole saw) from the laundry center.CAMPING WORLD
11-17. CurbSide Basement: Used Kwikee HD units. Figured the maximum use of the basement floor to determind what sizes I wanted. Layed everything out I wanted to put in the compartment on the driveway, started cutting/sawing, and glueing until everything had a home. CAMPING WORLD. Note photo 15, if you want adequate light on the patio, this fixture works great. You will have to cut (tin snipes) a recess hole in order to mount flush. CAMPING WORLD
18. Cutting Board: The two Koridan covers for the stove top that came with the unit were always coming off. One instance during an hard braking suituation, I almost got one in the back of the head. Bought a pre-fab board, 1/2"larger than the opening, knotched the side and back to fit in, added the bull nose. Four little Velcro strips keep it in place. Great for extra counter space, and the board is aways there. When it gets a little cut up, I just take the sander to freshen up. CONTAINER STORE
19. Cutting Knifes: Three of these magnet blocks do the trick. Have never had one fly off. LINENS & THINGS
20-21. CurbSide Drapes: I found it always a pain to keep pulling the entire section back and forth to exit. Ran into a very nice Alpine couple in Zion that I got this idea from. There is a seam in the exact spot that separates at the door. Just undid the seam and re-stiched, added three Velcro stripes for closure.
22. Drawers,Cabinets: Spent almost an entire weekend carpeting everything in the coach. What a difference it made for noise abatement. Very few rattles going gdown the road. HOME DEPOT
23. Drivers Side Basement Slider (back view). One unit holds patio carpet, four table chairs, table, Colman Grill. All from CAMPING WORLD
24-25. Hair Dryer: I'm the kind of guy that likes a place for everything. Saves pulling it out each time and winding up the cord. Wiring directly into the receptacle (cut a little notch in base plate) saves for an extra plug. CAMPING WORLD
26-27. HD Receiver: (Dish 811) Not the unit that came with the coach, but will get HD Reception on satellite #110. What a difference. Had to cut back of cabinet and carpet in order for it to fit. If you have the problem we experience, receiver freezes up due to over heating. This little 3/4" LapTop Cooler works great. FRYS ELECTRONICS
28. Holding Tank Vents: After installing these, I have never had a odor smell inside the coach. Color Matched to roof line. CAMPING WORLD
29. Dual Thermometer: Battery operated. Easy to route outside probe behind window valance, push through the brush closure on the window. LINENS & THINGS
30. Keys: Conveinent place to always know where they are. HOME DEPOT
31-32. Awning Light: If you are like me, and want to have everything setup up as quickly as possible, this works. The Rope Light is not quite enough to read under, but great for most everything else. I cut it the exact lenght of the casing, then just roll it up inside the awning. It causes a small dis-configuration, but I have operated mine a hunded times with no probelms. In shortening the rope you will loose the first and last foot of lights. Fix: Take a short piece of #14-16 wire, strip just 1/4" off the ends, bend into a U, then push into the cut end to reconnect the wires. A little silicone over the exposed wire holds it in place. CAMPING WORLD
33. Remote Controls: Saves having to plug everything in each time. One for Under Coach, Awning Light, and "Barking Dog" CAMPING WORLD, but LOWES has the smaller one for half the cost.
34. Rope Light Under Coach: Just enough light to keep from tripping over things in the dark. A NEWELL pulled in next to me at a park once that had more lights on it than most Semis, this idead I liked. CAMPING WORLD
35-36. Oil Blow By: Tired of cleaning the oil spots off the end section behind the motor? This works. Use a plastic water bottle (heaviest you can find, the heat will dis-stort the lighter ones), with a slightly less than 7/8" opening, drill a series of holes in top to equal at least the ID of rubber breather hose, slip the bottle on about half way, leaving enough room to catch the oil, but not bottom out.... a little Duct Tape, and you are in business. The picture showing the mount has about 1/2" of oil that has taken about 6 months to collect.
37. Pantry Shelves: Twice the shelves, double the storage. HOME SHOP
38-39. Reading lights: The over head lights in the front of our unit only work with the key on, and are dis-tracting while moving. If you want it to be individual by side, and flexable, these work great. ROBERT BOSCH brand, found somewhere on the WEB
40. Remote Power modual for under coach lighting. LOWES
41. Awning Light Power. A strip of velcro holds modual in place. Don't forget to take down before rolling up awning.
42. Water Proof Receptacle: Spliced into Dryer power on other side of wall, color matched to coach paint. Now I do not have to run extension cords for lights, and also for my George Foreman quicky grill. LOWES
43. Motion Sensor: This is one little great addition for having piece of mind while sleeping in remote areas, or anywhere for that matter. Its a small little box that "Barks Like A Dog", we have it in the cabinet under the Vanity. If anyone approaches the outside, the box lets you know. The nice thing about this Guard Dog, doesnt' require frequent potty stops, and doesnt' eat much. SMARTHOME.COM
44. Rock Guard: There are a number available, this is a nice one, easy to install, and company will put what ever you like in letters. RIVERSIDE ENTERPRISES
44-45. Security System: All Wireless. Have contacts on windows, front door, with motion sensor in living area. Has a ton of features, most you will not use. Need two people to install, one to read instructions (hate that part), another to push buttons. SMARTHOME.COM
47-48. Shoe Storage: These canvas pockets help to keep from having a stack of shoes in the closet, and never finding two that match. If you use one side of the closet for pants, there is enough room on the back wall to mount a second unit. Bought one (12pairs), but none of my shoes got to use it, bought a second and the wife lets me use two pockets.... how woman can have more shoes than there are days of the month, is beyond me.... love them tho. CAMPING WORLD
49-50. Shower Despensers: These save having to always put stuff away. Keeps bottom of shower un-cluttered, especially when your wife has to have something different of everything. HOME DEPOT
51. Bath Sink: Keeps clutter of the counter. As in the kitchen, using a hole saw (drill)to cut, units fill from underneath by un-screwing bottle. Use the more expensive ones, the cheapies at Home Depot do not have a large enough tube to suck up thick lotion. Found these at THE GREAT AMERICAN INDOORS, closely matches the brushed finish on the sink fixtures.
52. Galley Sink: same as Bathroom. Afer trying a number of different polishes, settled on Mothers Plastic Polish. I use it on everything, counters, stainless, shower. Easy on, easy off. MOST AUTO PARTS STOREs
53. Since the Alpine was an upgrade, added a picture of our previous MH. Loved that Southwind. I did a great deal of work on this unit, traded it in on the Alpine, the Dealer sold it the same day for more than I paid for it four years prior.
54-55. Spice Pull Out: After always having to dig in the cabinet, came up with this idea for ease of use. The front is the old door, with pull re-mounted in center. HOME SHOP
56. Stainless support: Kind of hard to see in the picture. Our units basemant had sagged on the outside about one inch, even before adding any weight. The door catches would no longer keep doors locked. Easy fix: Use screw-all rod, cut and drilled through L Bracket underneath, mounted on outboard upper arm. Just tightened until everything was even. HOME DEPOT
57. Drawer Under Sink. Would never stay on track. Added two additional cross section boards underneath for support, and expoxy glued a little block where rail meets back wall. Has never failed since. HOME SHOP
58. Storage: Left side over sink. When I see "Air" in a compartment, I try to put something in it. HOME SHOP
59. Towell Rack. I like the ones that the center section rolls, towels slide on and off easily. I found these at The Great American Indoors, and they match the design and finish of the other fixtures.
60. TV Frame: After one instance of exiting a driveway with a good dip at the curb, our Bedroom TV flew out on the bed. The little block wasnt' enough to hold it. This frame is epoxy gluded to the TV, then screw mounted to the outer cabinet.
HOME SHOP
62-63 Water Soften: One of the best things I have added. Sits right into service bay, easy 300-400 gallon capacity, re-charges in 15-minutes with simple table salt. The straps are for a TV Hold Down available at Camping World. RVUPGRADES.COM
64. Wheel Polish: Have tried most everything available at your local auto parts store. While this product is not the best I have tried, it surely rates as the easiest. DON'T use the cleaner, Simply Green works just fine. Pick up one of the little folding Camping Stools, perfect position, and keeps knees off the hard pavement. RVUPGRADES.COM
65. Wire Covers: Available Home Depot or Lowes. If you have a number of cords/cables, these are two piece and snap together

Hope you have enjoyed reading as much as I enjoyed doing the work....... its fun

Walt


Walt / Julie Darden
2004 Alpine 40FDTS
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Old 09-14-2005, 06:22 AM   #3
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Walt, thankyou so much for the pics. Man like they said on your original post you win! I have never seen anything like the effort you put into the coach and looking at the pictures it looks very professional. Thanks for sharing your ideas and now if you don't mind I will put some of your ideas to work for me, well as soon as we get our coach.
Lyle
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Old 09-14-2005, 02:21 PM   #4
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Lyle:

You are very welcome to use any of the ideas. Me, I don't really think of them as any big deal, just ways I found to better organized our coach. My goal was to have a place for everything, and be able to break camp in less that 15 minutes... With the help of a lot of velcro, and Julie staying out of my way.... I can do it.

If you need any help or have aditional questions, let me know.

I am very interested if WRV has sorted out the Audio/Video configuration on the later model units, the 04 was a mess. It took me approximately 600 dollars in cabels, and a weekend of re-wiring to get ours to work like it should........ with one remote control, HD Reception, and Progressive Playback on the DVD.

Good luck, and I am envious of your new APEX.... enjoy. Now that I am bored fixin mine, trying to figure out how I can justify to Julie to go get a new one.
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Old 09-14-2005, 04:03 PM   #5
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Walt & Julie, Your improvements & modifications are terrific. Absolutely gives us some great ideas. Thanks so very much for sharing.
Out of curiousity does Julie always get all the dishes etc, in the proper place or have you designed her a procedure list that she follows?
Thanks again for very useful pictures and info.

Ted & Carol
34 Alpine 2005
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Old 09-14-2005, 05:40 PM   #6
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Ted:

Julie is a lucky lady, all she has to do is show up. She knows that when I am on a 'mission', it's best to just sit back and relax. I have a certain way to accomplish things using the least amount of effort in the shortest amount of time. I can get it done faster without any help. I'm the kind of person that gets wierd if my undershirts are not rolled in a perfect cyclinder, or undershorts in a perfect square, not to mention silverware stacked evenly in the tray, etc, etc. Julie says I am annal, but for me it's just the easiest way to stay organized.

Not to take anything away from Julie, she is absolutly the most wonderful person I know, and my best friend.......... and I never go through a day without counting my blessings for her being in my life........ she sets a benchmark by which I judge myself, and I'm a better person because of her. When we stand together, some say, it's hard not to tell where Julie stops and I begin.

........... actually, I'm the lucky guy

Walt
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Old 09-15-2005, 07:22 AM   #7
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Boy, talk about brownie points !!!!!!

Ted
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Old 09-15-2005, 07:11 PM   #8
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Walt,
I am interested in your solution to the audio/video system as I suspect I have the same system. Very frustrating. If you could send me a rough scematic I would appreciate it. Email is htg3@cox.net
Thanks
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Old 09-15-2005, 09:00 PM   #9
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htg3:

Not sure how to post a diagram on how I routed the cables. I'll forward you via email my mobile number, give me a call, preferable Saturday. If you have the Panasonic Plasma and DVD player, it really isn't too difficult.... and it is possible to get HD reception off of satelite #110.
By taking the VCR out of the tuner loop, you can then use the video distribution block to send what ever signal where ever you want. This is all easier said now after cosiderable time invested, and eventually tearing the whole mess out and starting from scratch....... have a big piece of paper handy.

I think WRV solved some of these issues on later models equipped with the LCD TV with the built in tuner.

EngineerMike:

You can get one remote to run all, at least with the DishNetwork 811 Reciever. This reciever comes with a UHF programmable remote, and it operates the receiver, all three televisions, the DVD Player, VCR.... from the bedroom, outside and any where else in the coach.

Take care,

Walt
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Old 09-16-2005, 06:10 PM   #10
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Walt, The gray carpet that you used in the basement dividers and other places. Is that something std. that you can pickup up at Home Depot or Lowes, etc? It seems to match the original carpet perfectly.

Ted
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Old 09-17-2005, 06:22 AM   #11
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Ted III:

You are correct, the carpet is available at either Lowes or Home Depot, comes in six foot widths. It is not identical to the WRV, but close. I have used both, but like the backing better on the one from Depot. Tried different glues, the Heavy Duty 3M spray works best.

Take care,

Walt
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Old 09-17-2005, 02:22 PM   #12
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Walt

I am also interested in your solution to the audio/video system. I also have a 2004MDTS. Did you replace any of the equipment with new?

Thanks
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Old 09-17-2005, 03:18 PM   #13
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alpine4us:

All original equipment with the exception of the satelite receiver ( DishNetwork 811 HD ). Added a channel modulator and Component Video Distribution Block. I would imagine you have the same setup I had............ a mess. It really isn't that difficult to sort out, if you are willing to invest a few hundred bucks in cables and two pieces of equipment. You can do it for much less if you can do without the Progressive Playback feature on the DVD. After I saw the difference ( approximately three times the resolution ), I went the extra mile.
Forward me an email....... walt@dardens.com I'll return my mobile, you get paper and pencil.... I'll walk you through it. After you have an understanding of what you want to do, the best way is to just remove the entire cable configuration........ and re-do the entire set-up. That was my eventual fix.

Happy to be of help, and take care,

Walt
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