Shakedown, first voyage with a big BANG!

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We picked up our RV on Friday May 12th 2016 in Forest City Iowa (LICHTSINN RV) and  finally did our first voyage to New Richmond Wisconsin on memorial day weekend , a whopping 40 miles away from home. This was our first travel and overnight outside the dealer lot. Bailey, our happy dog, was excited too. After getting the needed stuff into the RV we took off. Me driving the RV and Eileen driving my car. We do not have a tow dolly yet so needed to ride separate.

We planned to visit friends in New Richmond but somehow never were able to get in contact. The other reason was that we did not want to get to far from home the first time so we could drive back if we forgot something crucial. (That did not happen)

After about an hour we arrived at the campground. This campground is at the Hatfield Lake and Hatfield stadium, close to the New Richmond municipal airport. The campground is owned by the city and reservations are made using their website. We were at site number 9.

Now the first challenge was how to park the RV? That was easy solved as other RVs were already there so I just copied their position. Wow all uneventful, no flat tire, no rain no breakdown so we were happy!


Ok so parked the RV, checked around for hookups alright… electricity water and sewer, perfect for $22 a night, try that in a hotel….. Parked the RV in the perfect spot to deploy! Now lets think about it oh lets put some wood under the levelers and the gravel. Is there enough room to put the slide outs out…… Yes it all looks good so here we go, level the coach. So far so good, leveling was a breeze. Next put out the slide outs, first the fridge and dining table on the passenger side, done. Ok now the kitchen and couch…then…. BANG, it sounded like a gun shot. Oh no did i miss something outside. Dang.. Nope said Eileen seems that a cabinet door was not closed and the handle snapped off. Could have been worse. So slide back in, door secured and second try, that worked. The door looked a little crooked and the handle was broken off for sure and my pride was dented. Oh well we will fix that later. Now I added a warning “check cabinet doors” next to the slide out switch!

Bedroom slides out without a problem and hooked up to electricity. We were using the water we took in from home because the kitchen filter was not delivered yet. Before I filled up water at home I cleaned the tank.

There we were smiling at each other we made it and are really at a campground with our RV, our first adventure and we like it so far.

After we settled down, made some coffee and walked the dog it was time to eat. We decided not to start cooking on our shakedown trip to make things easy and one thing at a time. So off to eat somewhere,  one of the reasons we brought our car along.

Time to go asleep. When we were at the dealer lot to pick up our RV we noticed the sleep number bed was leaking and lost firmness every night we slept on it. We could not get comfortable. Other people we know from the forum also complained about things like that and that it breaks down a lot. We decide then that we would dispose of the sleep number bed and buy a decent mattress. That is why we took our air bed along with the pump.

Removing the sleep number bed was easy but after inflated the air bed we realized that it was way to high to fit in the bedroom on top of the stage in the bedroom so we moved it to the living room. Sleeping on a air bed is no pleasure either… So we have to decide what mattress to buy very soon!


The rest of the time was uneventful except for the water, it smelled like rotten eggs. That means I was not successful in cleaning the water tank. I used a method described here: <How to sanitize your fresh watertank>
I probably did not add enough chlorine or did not keep it in the tank long enough. We then hooked up the waterline to the outside tap. Need to sanitize it again when back home.

I fixed the broken handle and crooked door with a handle from a little door that is hidden in a closet in the back of the RV that covers access to the washer/dryer water faucets. It is still a little crooked but that will be a easy fix later. Yes I did not forget to bring tools, you never know what happens! And to prevent this happening again we now just use a rubber band that keeps the door shut. (Until we forget that part again)

Make checklist for packing the RV (I forgot the dog bed)
Make checklist arriving at campground
Make checklist departing campground
Make checklist storing RV (Short term)
Make checklist storing RV (Long term)


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