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Old 01-03-2012, 07:10 AM   #1
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My new 1989 Winnebago Chieftan

Today I am buying my first RV, and will be basically living in it where I work in West Texas. I am completely new to an RV so if any of you have any tips or advice it would be greatly appreciated!

My new RV was originally purchased in Alaska and somehow wound up here in Arkansas, and has just under 52k miles on the clock. I am very excited about my first journey!
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Old 01-03-2012, 08:58 AM   #2
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Congrats Rigmover! Like you, I bought a "vintage" RV just last year. My first tip to you is check everything in the engine compartment, replace all fluids and air filter, check all hoses and belts, etc. Learn how to correctly hook up your batteries, take pictures now before you ever have to disconnect them. Next, get yourself every manual you can find on your MoHo if you don't already have them. I found most of mine on the internet and didn't spend a dime for them. Most helpful was this site and all the wonderful members who helped point me in the right direction.

After cleaning, disinfecting and a few minor mods, I went through all the systems in the coach one by one, learning how they worked, making sure they were safe, especially the LP appliances, and learning proper maintenance procedures.

During the next heavy rain, check your coach for leaks and look everywhere, the ceiling, in the cabinets and around your windows.

If something does not work, 1st - check the simple stuff like fuses and breakers. Next, come to iRV2 to research further. There is a wealth of information here and some really great folks as well.

Good fortune to you and we'll see you again!
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Old 01-03-2012, 02:19 PM   #3
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rigmover, we have 1990 chieftain. winnebagos are great old motorhomes. just ask anyone who owns one or has ever owned.
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Old 01-03-2012, 07:38 PM   #4
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Be sure to check the date code on your tires before making any trips. (look here for how to find the code). RV tires are almost never driven enough to show much tread wear, but they die of old age. Common wisdom is 7 years is about the maximum life for an RV tire.

A blowout in an RV can do tremendous damage to the house, taking out walls, tanks and so on. Completely different animal from a blowout in your car or truck.
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Old 01-08-2012, 07:56 AM   #5
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Thanks! Plans changed when I pulled out the cash, thats when the drama started... Turns out it belonged to his x-girlfriend, and he wanted to sell it with a hand written bill of sale and no title!
So I did some more looking, found an 89 Silver Eagle at Crabtree RV in Alma AR. It had an old water damage spot which I will fix up, and is currently in their shop to get the generator working before I fork over the rest of the cash. It had a lot of rain the days before we checked it out, could find no fresh wet spots around the windows or upper cabinets so I think I got a good deal.

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Old 01-08-2012, 07:59 AM   #6
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I will fight the urge to pretend this is a truck and try not to put a bunch of chicken lights and a big CB radio on it!
:-)
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Old 01-08-2012, 08:00 AM   #7
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Smart move.

I've had so many scam attempts that now when I buy something it is straight to the title office with both of us. Cash changes hands when the clerk says everything is good for the transfer.
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Old 01-08-2012, 08:13 AM   #8
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I know I am new to the RV thing, but some of the scams I hear about are pretty retarded!

I work in trucking and a bunch of us are working on getting a website started for drivers to leave comments and reccomendations on shops that do good work and the ripoffs, is there anything like that here with RVing?
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Old 01-08-2012, 08:29 AM   #9
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harvrk, another "new" Chiefton owner was asking about the switches by the entrance. They said 4 were labeled, lights, steps etc. But there was one below the other 4 that had no label. I thought maybe it was a disconnect. Can you help?
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Old 01-08-2012, 09:02 AM   #10
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Rigmover, Congrats on your new to you MH. Good luck, but do check the tires for age...
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Old 01-08-2012, 09:05 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pepper2 View Post
harvrk, another "new" Chiefton owner was asking about the switches by the entrance. They said 4 were labeled, lights, steps etc. But there was one below the other 4 that had no label. I thought maybe it was a disconnect. Can you help?
On my Chieftain the 4th switch is the battery disconnect.
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