San Elijo SB

We spent a few days on the ocean at San Elijo State Beach. For the most part, Muddlin’ Through did a great job of keeping us comfortable. Here’s what we learned.
The rear screen does a nice job of being a slight sunscreen as well as it’s obvious purpose of keeping out bugs. Cut down on the glare quite a bit when the sun was behind us, which it was quite a bit since we had the nice big rear doors facing the ocean.
With a few more showers behind us, we still find it a pretty decent experience. Only real issue is that the drain screen clogs completely and quickly. It is very fine mesh. We need to determine whether or not the pump that moves that water to the grey tank is really that sensitive to lint and such. I suspect this is the same drain and pump used in the Travato G, so hopefully a lot of knowledge can be gleaned from the owners of those models.
The Truma was a champ both for keeping us warm as well as heating water. Still kind of amazed how quiet it is.
Our only real issue was that although in a campground, we were boondocking. No hookups.
Starting Wed early evening through Thur evening ran on batteries and 15 minutes of generator use just fine. That was lights, water pump, fridge, iPhone and Apple watch charging, 30 minutes of TV and DVD player and Truma set to 65 overnight with outside temps dipping down in lower 50s. A bit of sunshine during the day, but not much. Thursday evening we were down to 12.2V.
We ran the generator for about 25 minutes to charge some laptops (overkill, I know) and put a bit of energy back into the batteries. Friday morning we were down to 12.1V, which is 0.1V less than I’d like to dip down to.
So what this tells me is that for boondocking in the less sunny times of year, we are going to need to run the generator more than we did (maybe 40 minutes from Wed afternoon until Friday morning), or add more solar. And this was modest use of the 12V in my opinion. Will be worse when we use an inverter to keep laptops charged.
Sadly, don’t have our battery monitor installed yet so just going by battery voltage, not actually able to monitor amps in and out.
Converting the table to a bed is never going to be fun, and we certainly noticed that it was some effort each day. But still a reasonable tradeoff for allowing a nice large seating area in a B that also has a huge fridge, and a decent sized bathroom.
That large table has been great, and sitting there eating meals with an ocean view out the rear of the Paseo was nice. Good view with doors closed and a fantastic view with them open!
Yeah, we could have eaten on the grungy picnic table, or in folding chairs and a small portable table outside. But since it’s still a little cool out, being somewhat inside with a view almost like we were outside worked great.
And the park itself is nice – fantastic ocean views. Most spots don’t have hookups, but that’s a reasonable tradeoff for the location. Short walk to Bull Taco there in the park, and if you walk inland a bit you have access to a bunch of places to eat in Cardiff by the Sea. VG Donut is the best, and you can get great food at the Seaside Market and bring it back to camp.

The Bed Video

Second video is up, this one is all about sleeping in the bed.

I don’t want to scare people off – we actually do like the bed quite a bit.

The only reasons I see to be concerned is if you are much over 5’10” or if two people are sleeping in that bed and both need to get up during the night.

In the first case the question becomes can you sleep at an angle, which might be a problem if you have a partner, might not. If they are shorter, could work. Or if you just like being cozy.

For the second case you’d need to assess just how difficult it is for one person to crawl over. Or just how much the outside sleeper dislikes having to get up to let the second person out, which might need to happen depending on the agility of the sleepers.

For us, the bed has worked well, even with a 50 pound dog curled up at our feet!

Our First Actual Trip

We had our first outing this weekend where we picked up Muddlin’ Through from storage and went to an RV park for the night.
(Previous use had been camping in relative’s driveways or Cracker Barrel boondocking as we stopped for the night on our cross-country trip.)

As expected, things were much roomier without our adult son and all of the holiday gear (presents etc.) that we had with us on our cross-country trek.

We used a lot of the time to organize things in the RV. Still a ways to go, but progress! Although we still don’t have everything in the RV yet that we will have eventually, we are still pleased by how much storage space remains.

I took my first shower! It went well. I had plenty of room. The bathroom felt smaller than our walk-in shower at home of course, but did not feel cramped. Didn’t hit elbows on anything, and didn’t need to do any awkward contortions or poses. The Truma provided plenty of hot water for the single shower, which was all we tried.
Bottom line is that bathroom worked as well as we’d hoped it would for showering. Our love for the Truma continues to grow.

We experimented more with the best way to use the bed (as regards *sleeping*) and will have a video that gives a lot of those details in the very near future.

Linda was dismayed to discover that one of the windows on the passenger side is crooked. By window we of course don’t mean the precise Ford glass, but the cutout and frame that WGO builds. It’s not a functional issue, but for anyone with a bit of “that crooked picture on the wall must be straightened!” in them, it’s annoying. We knew going in to the Paseo not to necessarily expect the craftsmanship that companies like Pleasure Way or Leisure Travel promise, but this seems like something that should not require any particular cabinetry crafting skills to have gotten right.

Convection microwave worked great, although so far that’s just been used for reheating pizza and making microwave popcorn.

We may have an issue with our awning – I need to do more research before worrying. Trying to extend it the motor runs but nothing moves (much). A cycle or two of retract/extend resulted in it working properly each time, but something is amiss.

I also investigated the best way to connect an XBox 360 to the Receiver and TV. Since upgrading to an Xbox One, my 360 has been gathering dust, so I decided to see if it makes any sense as a game system for the RV. Time will tell if it gets any use, and if not out it will go!
HDMI won’t work if you want to use the Jensen amp and speakers for game audio as the audio from the TV is fed back to the Jensen amp via HDMI. What worked ok was to use the Xbox analog video cable and connect audio to the inputs on the shelf next to the Jensen receiver and connect the Xbox component cable to the component jacks on the TV itself. You _can_ do composite to the shelf jacks, but the video quality will obviously suffer.

We continue to love the refrigerator/freezer in the Paseo. We brought cold items in a cooler along with two small blue-ice bricks. Items included a half-gallon of milk, a quart of lemonade, a few slices of frozen leftover pizza and a small container of frozen pulled pork. Fridge took about 1:30 to get close to the desired temperature, maybe a little longer. I failed to watch the temps and the time as closely as I’d like to have, and didn’t set up a temperature logger. I’ll try to get better performance data next time. Both fridge and freezer were nice and cold, and we had plenty of room. Can’t imagine needing more room unless we were needing to go a week or more without replenishing.

Quality Issues

In general, we’ve been really impressed with the quality of our Paseo. There have been a few issues though, and since we point out all the good, it’s only fair we mention the bad as well. Winnebago has been made aware of these, and where we’ve gotten a response already it’s noted.

Wiring harness under the coach for the running board lights has a clamp that was never fastened to anything. Frustrating because it looks like even a cursory bit of inspection of the undercarriage would have spotted this. This left a harness hanging down.

Kitchen sink spout not tightened. This resulted in a blast of water all over Linda and a mess on the cabinet and floor. On the other hand, we were impressed by the force and volume of water the pump appears to be capable of!

A couple light scratches on the corrugated panels of the fridge and freezer. Not extreme, but noticeable. This also makes me a little concerned about how easily it will accumulate scratches. [WGO offered to replace]

Missing filler/structure between two of the windows. Between the opening window on the passenger side and the window forward of that one there should be something between the interior panel that holds the window frame with the screen and the one without a screen. This is hard to describe, but the summary is that something is missing and bugs can happily enter the coach via an adjacent window even with the screen in place. Think this is actually a structural piece missing (versus say foam) as this panel vibrates excessively due to the long in attached span of the interior panel.

Some chips out of the paint on the ladder bracket, bit of rust starting already. [WGO will replace]

Minor “bubbling” of the flooring on the hatch under the table. [WGO offered to replace]

Ground wire for the solar charge controller connected to passenger side battery rather than driver’s side as shown on drawings. This is an issue because it makes adding a battery monitor more difficult. [WGO investigating why this was deviated, and potentially correcting their process.]

Our First Video!

Our first Paseo video is now available on YouTube! It’s sort of a walkthrough, although we skip a lot of the features that are well covered by the WGO and Lichtsinn videos. Our goal was to try and point out more of the things we’ve observed during the time we’ve spent in the RV.

Disclaimers: We are amateurs at all aspects of video production. And the Paseo needs a wash. And we should have taken it someplace scenic, but our schedule did not allow.

We just hope it’s a bit useful to those people considering a Paseo!

The Tire Pressure Monitor Story

Maybe I’m just paranoid, but the thought of driving a large dual-rear-wheeled vehicle without being able to monitor the tire pressure seems dangerous to me.

Even with single rear wheels, I’d like to be able to monitor them and perhaps get some advanced warning of a tire issue. But with dual rear wheels, my expectation is that one rear tire could have quite severe problems without it being obvious to the driver.

This obviously leads to installing an aftrmarket Tire Pressure Monitor (TPM) system. The system I bought is an EezTire system which uses the small senders that screw onto each tires valvestem.

Installation of these did not go well. The front tires were fine, but the rear tires were another story. The valvestem on the outer tired faced inwards. The valvestem on the inner tire was unreachable via human hands. They were prefectly fine for checking and airing up using an extended chuck, but no way were the TPM senders being screwed on.

So on to the next step. This was calling around the various tire places trying to find one that could add extensions. Fortunately we were able to find one that could do it and get us in before we had to start our trip back to the west coast. About $120 later we had flexible extensions added that allowed me to screw the senders on.

Now there is a lot of discussion on the internet in various groups and forums about the various types of valve extensions. The best option seems to be having the existing valvestems replaced with solid metal extensions. For expediency we went with the flexible ones. I gather I’ll need to special order the solid versions, assuming they are even available for the Transit. That is the eventual plan, as I’m a bit concerned about the long-term reliability of the flexible extensions. If nothing else, just having more connections is more places for leaks to occcur.

The TPM itself worked *great*. Was really nice to be able to see the tire pressures as we cruised down the highway. It was also very convenient to turn the monitor on in the morning and see that the tires were ok before hitting the road. And without needed to use the guage on each one!

It would be great if WGO could somehow make a TPM system a factory option. Mine has already cost several hundred dollars, and to avoid the stress, time, and effort it’s required I’d have been happy to pay hundreds more to have had it already installed when we took delivery of our Paseo.

Why isn’t this a standard feature? Apparently vehicles above 10,000 lbs are not required to have a TPM system, so the Paseo does not. (Versus say the Travato, which does have one standard.)