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Old 11-23-2012, 05:08 PM   #15
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LazyDays will allow you to "camp" with full hookups in their delivery lot free for a couple of days while you check to make sure everything meets your expectations. You can get a pass from your salesperson that will allow you to take the RV out on the road for some experience. You'll have to take the salesperson with you, but that's a good thing under the circumstances.

Do bring your toad and let LazyDays set it up for towing. They'll do a great job and teach you how to deal with it too. Once they've got their hooks in you, they're very nice and helpful

I drove over to LazyDays one year ago in my Honda Element with no knowledge about RVs of any kind. I drove out of there by myself in my 36' motor home towing my Honda. Never looked back, been havin' a blast.

The only lesson I had was Barney's Driver Confidence course and a few hours here and there in empty parking lots. It's not hard to drive at all, it's fun, but is does demand more active participation of the driver than your average Cadillac does, so driving is more tiring.


Susan in Music with Mizz Bizzy
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Old 11-27-2012, 11:18 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by georgetown350 View Post

ps that course is great...... I wonder if they still use the little red dots on the windows..
I just took the driving course with Bob. Guess Barney has retired. Good time was had by all. Yes, little red and green dots on the mirrors, windshield and body. The dots are a great way of turning the mirrors into reasonably accurate measuring tools. The course presented many good ideas to make the job easier. Lazydays is quite the experience. Over 100 salespeople and free hotdogs. The party never ends (well, maybe after sundown and during nap time). The other courses are also great for information and discussion.

Yes, bring the toad. If you are going to do it, go big or go home.

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Old 11-28-2012, 08:49 AM   #17
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Another thought. If your timeframe allows, park the car in Tampa. Load up the RV and go to several campgrounds in Central and South Florida. Maybe down to Long Key, Bahia Honda, and/or Key West. Then pick up the car on the way back and begin Phase 2.
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Old 11-28-2012, 04:23 PM   #18
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Pulling a toad is actually pretty easy. In louisiana we can actually pull two vehicles , recently i pulled our jeep and a utility trailer. just have to be aware.
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Old 12-27-2012, 02:39 PM   #19
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Thumbs up new driver

You and I are in the same boat. We have a 38' Monaco and a Buick Enclave toad. Waiting to get the tow bar put on now. Driving the MH is not a big problem as I have in the past driven large trucks. A couple of things stick out in my brain:

1. MH is 38' 25000 lbs + or- so the first thing is to learn to turn wide and be patient until you can complet the turn.

2. Automobile drivers think the MH can stop just like a car. It DOES NOT!! so allow some extra room for stopping distance if you can with out have a bunch if idiot drivers pull into the lane.

3. Remember you are in no hurry so travel time is not as important as getting there in one piece.

4. Toad are like dummies. They go where you go and are a bit smaller but do add weight and length to the rig so remember 38' plus 16' + 4' + 58' and plan accordingly. It takes some practice but it can done and safely.
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Old 12-27-2012, 03:07 PM   #20
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I picked up my first motorhome (the one I have now) and drove it the 6 miles home. Hooked up my 29 ft race car trailer and left two hours later for a race 200 miles away. The first 20 miles or so in rush hour traffic on the freeway I was pretty nervous. The next 180 or so I was somewhat nervous. On the way home after 4 days at the track, I forgot the trailer was behind me!

You'll probably be surprised how fast you get acclimated to that new rig.
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Old 12-27-2012, 05:02 PM   #21
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Driving the toad to Tampa to pick up the Motorhome will allow you to take more "stuff" that you will be needing, more clothes, maybe some pots and pans etc. Of course you will be making a trip to Camping World and Walmart some more stuff. Have Fun!
Jim and Shirley McGehee
2004 Beaver Monterey Laguna
2013 Honda Fit Toad, 2003 Jeep Liberty Toad
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Old 12-28-2012, 07:03 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by georgetown350 View Post
I vote for no toad. Getting in and out of fuel stations for a newbie might be easier without the toad ie. you will be able to back up in situations where you might have turned to sharp or oversteered etc.. also you can focus all your attention on driving the motorhome. Ok I just re read your post and have changed my vote to >>> bring your toad because of the possibility of winter weather

ps that course is great...... I wonder if they still use the little red dots on the windows..

I always use truck stops if they are available. Much easier to get in, get out.

Of course if the new coach is a gasser this won't work.

And I agree, always have an exit plan. I had one miserable day when I had to disconnect three times because of bad signage and found myself in situations where I couldn't go forward - a parking lot with no exit, a low bridge with the only warning sign past the last possible turn-off, and a GPS error that brought me to a dead end.

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Old 12-28-2012, 09:24 AM   #23
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After finding my current and first rig, a Bounder 34 ft dp, I drove it to a U-Haul dealer and dollied my Honda civic back home. The seller lived in Dallas, Ga. and I live in Fellsmere, Fl. With zero experience I drove the 560 miles home. After the first two hours my hands were cramping up so bad I had to stop for the night. But it was getting dark, and no way was I driving at night. After 2 -3 hours on the road the next day, I found myself driving with just a couple of fingers on the wheel, instead of a death grip. So driving this beast is really no harder than driving anything else, just different new and scary at first.
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Old 12-28-2012, 10:09 AM   #24
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I found only very small difference in pulling with toad. Tight turns just need to be taken a little wider than usual, same with gas stations. If you look at a gas station and you're not feeling good about it, don't try it. There are plenty around.

You'll see plenty of motorhomes on the interstates and you can just follow one off. Chances are he's looking to fuel up and you can follow suit. Most gas stations along the interstate have plenty of room to move around and set up your entry and exit.
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Old 12-31-2012, 12:59 PM   #25
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driving with a toad

I picked up my 37ft motorhome and drove for a whole year without a toad.
Big mistake! I thought towing would be so much more difficult than it is. Having a tow vehicle actually reduces the chance of damages because you drive it instead of the motorhome to the CVS. Bring your tow vehicle, just remember you cannot back up. Lazydaze can help you learn to connect and disconnect your tow and will be helpful. They should do something for you to earn those big bucks! Another thing to mention is stay there for several days until you are familiar with all the systems. I didn't the first time and regretted it. Don't rush off. I ended up having to come back to learn how certain things worked.
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Old 12-31-2012, 01:10 PM   #26
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FYI - bring a friend and BOTH of you video the PDI - even though you hear it, see it, and remember it while there, you'll be amazed what you pick up when you watch it at home !!!!
I actually copied all the videos (we made a point of stopping and starting into different segments for ease of use...) to my tablets and can have them in the rv!
'11 Monaco Diplomat 43DFT RR10R pushed by a '14 Jeep Wrangler JKU. History.. 5'ers: 13 Redwood 38gk, 11 MVP Destiny, Open Range TT, popups, vans, tents...
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Old 12-31-2012, 01:34 PM   #27
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As 2 women driving a 42' MH, bring the toad!. Have Lazy Days help/show you how to hook it up. We have a Demco towbar and Jeep Wrangler, it's a lightweight tow bar with easy hook up and simple to un hook. After a 20-30 hwy miles you'll never know you're towing. If you get in a pinch, un hook the toad. Have fun and enjoy your coach!
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Old 12-31-2012, 02:01 PM   #28
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Just a thought.

About the only things I could add to this thread is when you can fine time get your self a measuring tape and measure the distence from the most highest point on top of your Rig. to the ground and make a note of it so when you come upon a gas station or over hang (which usely will post a height limit) you will at a glance know if you can or can not go under it.
The second thing is when your driving down the road check you rearview mirrors and try to get in the center of your lane and when you think you are there, fine something on the left hand side of your dash and line it up with the lane line at your left.
The reason for this is when you get to a road that is being work on and they have those concrete barriers along the right hand side of you, or when your in the second or third land and traffic is on both sides this will help you sometimes to keep in your lane.
Injoy your Rig.

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