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Old 04-03-2007, 08:21 AM   #1
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Default First Time Users!!

Hello Again!
OMG I am so excited!! We're picking up our 2002TM 2916 in Northern Cal on Thurs. We're driving up from San Diego area. We plan on stopping in Big Sur and Santa Barbara areas on the way home. Now what do we do????
I'm sure the info is here, but I'm on my way to work and limited on search time.
Do we need to put chemicals in the toilet before we use it?
If we don't have the transmission cooler yet, will we be OK? We will be stopping every 2 hrs or so. Also the TM has a swing tongue... exactly how much weight does this add? TV = 3500 lbs
This has happened so fast we didn't have much time to prepare beyond getting the tow bar and prodigy installed.

On a trivial note, the day we pick up just happens to be our 10 yr wedding anniv. Doesn't get much better than dat!

thanks again
Nick and Kristin
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Old 04-03-2007, 08:59 AM   #2
Leslie & Nick
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Originally Posted by RollingStones View Post
Hello Again!
OMG I am so excited!! We're picking up our 2002TM 2916 in Northern Cal on Thurs. We're driving up from San Diego area. We plan on stopping in Big Sur and Santa Barbara areas on the way home. Now what do we do????
On a trivial note, the day we pick up just happens to be our 10 yr wedding anniv. Doesn't get much better than dat! thanks again
Nick and Kristin
There is a wealth of information on this forum. Check out:
"Trailmanor Information You Won't Find Anywhere Else"

I think this is available to non members.

First things first - you must be safe!!
Check the tires for signs fo wear and proper inflation. I have a 2002 2619 also. I check the tires regularly and keep 55 lbs in them (including the spare). If the tires are the originals the can be 5-6 years old now and approaching the end of their useful life regardless of what the tread looks like. You can tell the age of the tires by a code number stamped on the sidewalls. I just replaced my tires even though the treqad looked to be good.

Get yourself some Thetford chemical dedorant for the toilet. They make two kinds- one with formaldehyde, and one without. I've been using the non formaldehyde version, but I think I might try the other. With two people you should be good for a long weekend with the recirculating toilet. We always try to make maximum use of the campground's facilties if available.

If you can, try not to travel with fresh water in the fresh water tank. At 7+ lbs/gallon that is another 150 pounds of weight you'd be towing. I try and use the campgrounds's water if it's available. Ditto the toilet - charge it when you get to campground if you can. Don't forget to dump toilet before you leave if campground does not have sewer connections.

You must have the brake controller (Prodigy brand or other) on your TV. Make sure whomever installs it, shows you how to adjust controller itintially with the trailer attached. The brake controller operates the electric brakes on the trailer. One it's set, you probably shouldn't have to readjust it.

I have a full sized 1/2 ton pickup. I don't have a WDH, but most people say they are a good thing. The transmission cooler is also a good bet. I try to always minimize the weight of the trailer. You only have about 1000 lbs of stuff you can put on/in the trailer and that alreadycounts the awning, battery(ies), propane, etc.

Good luck on your maiden voyage. You'll learn quickly! Let us know how it goes.

2002 TM 2619
2002 Ford F-150
The Camping Canines - Aubie (RIP 7/14/08), & Klondike, Zeke and Grace, Mocha
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Old 04-04-2007, 12:01 AM   #3
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Default Refrig ?

Ok. Deep Breath: check

If we put food in the fridge, does it stay cool while driving? Or does the fridge only run while hooked up?

Also looking for weight of the swing tongue. I thought I read it was quite heavy.

Thanks for all the info. When we are official TM owners, where do I send my $12? I love this website!

N & K
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Old 04-04-2007, 02:16 AM   #4
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Hi Nick! Welcome and congratulations on your new TM purchase and your 10 year wedding anniversary. My husband and I just celebrated our 10th last July!

Sounds like you bought your new TM through Dinuba RV. That's where we got ours a couple years ago and I can not say enough good about them. Their service manager is outstanding! He will give you a complete introduction of your new TM and explain everything in detail. He takes his time with you so you'll have plenty of time to ask questions. As someone pointed out awhile back here, it would be helpful to take a video camera and perhaps film some of the things he shows you because they do go through a lot and chances are you probably won't remember it all when you need it. This way you can review the film later. There is also a good checklist online here that you'll want to download and print out. It goes through set up and break down in detail. You'll need something like that for the first few outings until it becomes familiar to you.

Nick pretty much covered a lot of the basics above, so I don't have much more to add right now. If you have any other questions, feel free to ask... everyone here is very helpful and friendly.

Here's the info about becoming a sponser of this site:

Here's the checklist you'll want to print:

Later, you'll want to check out "Trailmanor Information You Won't Find Anywhere Else":

And, FAQ's:

Oh, and a couple things I thought of off hand... get some chocks, a level, a fresh water hose (white colored), some disposable gloves and/or hand sanitizer (for dumping your waste water tanks).

The fridge is 3-way... you'll run it off the battery when in tow, however if you park your car for extended period disconnect the trailer power from the vehicle or it will pull from your car battery. Switch to electric or propane when you're camping. Fridge stays very cold, so watch the temp. Many of us added a fridge thermometer to regulate temps better. Your fridge will not make any sound when you first kick it on and it takes a good 12 hours to get cold - we usually plug in overnight before taking off.

You picked some great camping locales for your first two nights... spectacular scenery! Enjoy!

Again, welcome to both you and your wife and Happy Camping!
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Old 04-04-2007, 05:56 AM   #5
Bill & Lisa
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Did see anyone answer the question on the weight of the swing hitch and I guess thea reason is "why would you want to know?" You never have to pick it up and if you put the wheel in place under the front jack, take the weight of the TM onto the leveling jacks (never a good idead to "swing" the tongue/hitch while it is bearing weight) you un pin one side and swing front 1-2 feet of the trailer around to the side.

You can find a series of pictures showing how this is done on the Trailmanor website.

Hope this helps and remember to keep breathing.

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Old 04-04-2007, 09:38 AM   #6
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If you run the fridge on 12 volts while towing and stop for an extended period of time then there are two batteries to worry about. If the tV has an isolator or relay then the TV will be OK. If in doubt unplug the TM from the TV when you stop for a meal. Stopping for gas isn't long enough to be a problem.

However, if you stop for dinner and unplug the TM from the TV then the fridge is now running off of the TM battery(s). Some of us have added a battery disconnect switch. Others have added an external fridge switch. Otherwise you have to pop the TM open to take the fridge off of 12 volts and either turn it off or run on propane. I don't know how long it will take to kill the TM batteries.

When I take the TM to work and leave from there then I run the fridge on propane in the parking lot. Otherwise my stops are never more than an hour so I just use my battery disconnect switch.

In some other thread I think others have discussed the estimated time that it will take the fridge to kill the TM battery.
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Old 04-04-2007, 09:40 AM   #7
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My guess would be that the swing tongue adds about 50 pounds at most - probably less. You can think of the construction as little more than taking a "normal" TM, sawing off the front two feet of the A-frame, welding metal plates across the sawed-off ends (both the ends of the frame rails and the ends of the two-foot piece of A-frame), and adding a couple heavy brackets for the pins. It's a bit more complicated than that, of course, but that's the general idea.

I thought I had been to the TM website and seen the added weight due to the swing tongue, but I can't find it now.

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Old 04-04-2007, 10:25 AM   #8
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Welcome to our TM group! I see the forum helped you make a decision to buy, as it did for us.
There are many posts on using the refrigerator on the road, but frankly we didn't all last year. Someone's post gave me the idea to just put the food in a cooler and load the refrigerator in the campground. We plug in and cool the refrigerator overnight, unplug to leave and plug in again at the campground. Then we found the refrigerator cooled quickly enough with the cool food from the ice chest that I didn't really need to precool. I put frozen blocks (such as the blue ones in the camping section of the store) in the ice chest. Then while in camp the thawed block is put in the freezer section of the refrigerator to be ready to put back in the ice chest for the next long drive. It works fine for us (just two of us and our best friend).
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Old 04-04-2007, 12:29 PM   #9
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I have a long post somewhere about how we use the fridge for weekend getaways. We use a Coleman cooler in the truck that plugs into the cigarette lighter as an intermediate fridge.
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Old 04-04-2007, 11:49 PM   #10
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If I see a TM on Hwy 1 on the way home tomorrow, it might be you on your way to Big Sur. If you see somebody in a little red car waving, it will be me!

We had fun with ours on the way home from Salem, OR 3 1/2 years ago. I didn't think the frig worked because we only stopped overnight at each place, and it takes 24 hours to get real cold, but once we got it home it worked fine.

What a great trip home! Big Sur, and then down the coast. You'll love your TM.

Let us know how your "maiden" voyage went!

'97 2720 & '01 Chevy Silverado 1500 4x4
2011 & 2017 Prii, 10'x18' & 10'x9' Tents
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