Full Time Blogs - October 2006
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October 1, 2006

This is the weekend that Margo and I had planned to make a trip to Beaudry RV in Tucson so that we could wrap up the warranty service on the motor home. At the last moment we found out that the warranty service crew is also coming to complete the warranty service on our Las Cruces house. That leaves us with the question of how to handle two warranty services at two different locations, all at the same time. Since we need to get both services completed as soon as possible, we made a decision for Margo to remain in Las Cruces while I take the motor home to Tucson.

So bright and early this morning I hit the road for Beaudry RV, 269 miles to the west. I've already written about our warranty issues pertaining to the motor home and our problems with our recent factory service in Elkhart, Indiana. This trip will be a second attempt to get the warranty issues taken care of. As usual I'll post the results here for everyone to see. We're hoping that the service department at Beaudry will do better at resolving the problems with our coach.

The drive from Las Cruces over to Tucson was uneventful and it felt good to be on the road again. It's funny, when we're in the motor home for a while it always seems like we enjoy a break away from it, but as soon as we get away from it we can't wait to go again.

I rolled into the RV resort at Beaudry in the early afternoon and was assigned a nice space in the middle of the park. As far as the Tucson area goes we prefer Beaudry to that other well known RV Resort, Voyager. I guess it's just a matter of personal preference.

The weather in Tucson was beautiful and I soon had a chair out and sat back to relax with a beverage. Margo and I are rarely apart and it feels strange to not have her here. There is also no Sparkie to beg from me or to mooch a belly rub. But if we can get all of our warranty issues resolved between the motor home and the house it will be worth it to spend a few days apart.

October 2, 2006

Our appointment with the service department at Beaudry was scheduled for 8:00 am this morning and I was there with the motor home promptly at 7:55 am. Only it wasn't 7:55 am, it was only 6:55 am! I totally forgot that Arizona doesn't go on daylight savings time. Luckily the service department was open and the service advisors were already at work or I would have had another hour to wait. They ended up taking pity on me and got our issues written up a little early. As far as I know, Arizona and parts of Indiana are the only places in the Continental US that don't go on daylight savings time. Some people love DST and some hate it. I happen to be a person that would "Spring forward" and leave the clocks there permanently if I could. I love daylight savings time.

The service advisors at Beaudry were patient as I described our problems and explained what work (or lack thereof) had already been performed by the factory. Most of the items are fairly minor in nature, but one item, a problem with the backing camera, is a problem that is intermittent and is going to take some patience on our part to get repaired. The camera goes off for no reason when driving down the road, then I need to reboot the system to get it working again. This happens 5-7 times a day while we're on the road. The two side cameras work fine so I know it's not a monitor issue. Hopefully the folks at Beaudry have seen the problem on other units and can use that knowledge to troubleshoot ours.

I had thought about spending the day trying to look over the shoulders of the Beaudry technicians as they tackle our problems, but in the end I decided to leave them to their work and check back in with them later in the day. My thinking is that if the issues aren't taken care of properly then I can lay over at Beaudry until they are.

So there I was with a whole day to spend goofing off by myself. I started out by looking for a coffee bar where I could pick up a gourmet cup of coffee and a bagel. For some reason Tucson didn't strike me as a "coffee bar" type of place, but it didn't take me long to find a great little place where I could grab a coffee and sit down to hunt and peck on this web log.

After spending an hour or so sipping coffee and enjoying a fresh baked roll I headed over to my favorite Tucson attraction, the Pima Air & Space Museum (www.pimaair.org). I've discussed the Pima Museum before in these web logs, so I won't go into it again except to say that it features a wonderful collection of aircraft from both our military and civilian sectors. I could (and did) spend hours walking the grounds and spending time with some of my favorite airplanes. This trip to the museum I also included the bus trip over to the Aircraft Maintenance And Regeneration Center (AMARC), which is, located just a short distance to the north. The AMARC facility is used to store military airplanes, make them ready for flight or dismantle them, depending upon the situation. There are acres and acres of just about every type of military aircraft being stored out there in the desert sun. The public is invited to inspect the facility from the comfort of a motor coach (my favorite, a Van Hool C2145), but all visitors are required to stay aboard the coach as it makes it's way through the facility. The entire trip is narrated by a Pima volunteer and is very interesting if you like seeing how some of your tax dollars are being managed.

After a great day at Pima I made my way back to Beaudry prepared for whatever they had to report. I hadn't been called during the day so I assumed that the work was indeed straight forward and that it might even be complete. A few minutes with my service advisor confirmed that thinking. I was told that all work had been performed and that the coach was ready to be picked up.

I was also told that the backup camera and the right rear jack were now both working as designed and that the jack problem may have been operator error on my part. I was invited to speak with the technician who worked on the jack system and we were able to compare notes as to how each of us operated the system. He told me that he had leveled the unit five times and each time it leveled as designed and that all three jacks including the right rear extended properly. It appears that I was turning the system off prematurely, before the right rear jack was done extending. To set the record straight, I was operating the system exactly as I had been instructed by the folks at Beaudry during my purchase walk-around. The technician seemed to know his business and, at this point, I believe his method of operating the system is the correct one. If it is, I owe Monaco an apology. The system leveled properly at the Beaudry resort, but the jury is still out as to whether it will continue to do so in the future.

The backup camera has been working perfectly too, so it appears that Beaudry took care of our remaining service issues and we can relax for a while. As I said before, we love our Monaco Knight and it has been a real pleasure to travel and live in, but all RV's have their initial teething issues. We've had ours as we've indicated here, but it's all been worth it. We love the coach and wouldn't trade it for any other in our price range.

After a great night's sleep, (I missed having Margo on the trip, but loved having the whole bed to myself!) it was time to make the 269 mile trip back to Las Cruces. The trip back was as uneventful as the trip out, but it felt nice knowing that there was nothing left to have to service. The warranty issues are taken care of and all other major services have been performed. I topped off the fuel tank before putting the RV to bed at the storage yard and she's ready to hit the road on our next adventure. We'll keep you posted as to where and when that will take place.