Tuesday, January 25, 2011

More Red Bay Stuff

After posting the blog on Sunday morning and having a nice breakfast/brunch, we went for a walk looking for a place to watch the Packer/Bear game. It was being shown on FOX and we could not get that channel in our coach. No luck to be found. Red Bay is in a dry county so there wasn't even a sports bar around Sad smileWe got in a nice 4 mile walk in the process,  but I was relegated to watching the game play by play on espn.com! I was grateful for the walk but really, really would have loved to "see" the actual game. Congratulations to the Packers!  May your streak continue for at least one more game Smile. !

Monday started very early as we had to be at Bruce Deaton's Paint Shop at 6:00 AM. Naturally, because we had to be up so early, neither of us slept well. We're always afraid we'll oversleep so we end up not sleeping much at all :)  We had a recommendation, from the folks in the office, for breakfast at  Swamp Johns. From what I understand, Swamp Johns used to be an old filling station. The owner, for whatever reason, started doing a fish fry one night a week. I'm not sure how you go from gas sales to fish sales, but it was a hit. Eventually, it became a daily thing, with expanded menu and the filling station business became the restaurant business. It eventually branched out with about 5 locations in this area but the original, still in the filling station building, is about 4 miles outside of Red Bay. It's a no frills kind of place, but they open at 5:30 AM for breakfast and we both had very good omelet's.

As much as we tried, we couldn't make breakfast last longer than 7:00 AM, so we took a drive out in the country to kill some time. We ended up at the Tiffin plant around 9:00 AM to take the factory tour at 9:30 AM. The factory tour is offered once a day and it is aptly named. We were right down on the factory floor amidst all the workers and all the building going on. We were even told that if there was anything we were interested in seeing more of, we could come back and just walk in, no need for another tour. I would think there would be a liability issue with the public wandering in the work area, but no one seemed concerned. We saw motorhomes in various stages of completion and all the materials used in them. At the end, we were able to go into a new 40'  2011 Bus. It was beautiful but, in all honesty, I like our 2005 model better. The floor plan wasn't much different, but all the finishes were much more opulent. It just seemed cold, not homey at all. Beautiful, but just too glitzy for my taste. Naturally, Rick was very pleased that I liked the older, paid for model the best Smile

It's hard being "homeless" while your coach is in the paint shop. We could have stayed in it, but the paint fumes were just way too strong. After the tour, we ended up parking the Jeep in the paint shop parking lot and reading/napping until the coach was done about 1:30 PM. Once back in our slot at the campground, we plugged in and I turned on the heat pumps to take the chill off. Hmmm, they didn't come on. Rick checked and noticed we were still running off the inverter, not the power pedestal. So, he got out his trusty volt-ohm meter and checked the pedestal. No power. The campground sent someone out to reset the breaker...plugged in again...breaker tripped again. Smoke/sizzle coming from the power cord reel. Oops. One of the service managers just happened to be in the office, so he had Rick bring it into an open service bay. They ran diagnostics and our power cord reel had shorted out. :(  Naturally, that necessitated replacing the entire thing. Ouch! Within an hour, though, we were back in business. It was about 4:30 PM by the time we finally got re-situated and I decided it must be happy hour somewhere!  Smile It had been a long and expensive day.

If things had to break, I guess this was the best place for them to do that. We had done our research before buying a used coach and knew that we would face repairs and that things wear out. The coach is 6 years old and had not been through the rigors of full time living until we purchased it. In the 3 months we've lived in it, all the systems have had a good work out. Now was the time to repair/replace any that did not hold up. In our minds, we still came out way, way ahead buying used vs. new.

We had a 7:00 AM appointment in bay 34 this morning to have our slides checked out, adjusted and repaired if necessary. We didn't need to vacate for this appointment, so I am currently sitting on the coach typing this and waiting on the results. The final outcome of this appointment is not yet known but,  whatever it ends up being, I don't think we will be surprised Smile 


  1. Like you said, better that the power cord shorted out there and not down the road!

  2. It's like my father-in-law having his stroke while he was being discharged from the hospital after surgery--wrong thing, right place. Glad yours turned out well.

    Linda Sand

  3. Couldn't agree more with you on the used vs new in terms of more cost effective even if you have to get some things fixed. So do the new coach owners from what I hear tell so the time spent is the same. But even paying for the repairs and upgrades won't get me anywhere near the cost of a new coach. Although the bite I'm taking for 6 new tires is a bit hard to get down. :-)


  4. We totally agree with you regarding buying used vs new. We were just at the Tampa RV show and had very similar feelings about the new 2011's.

    We have enjoyed reading about the updates you have had done to your coach. We did some upgrading to our 12 yr old RV in 2009 and are seriously considering buying a used Allegro Bus sometime in the next year. Would love to have the chance to meet you somewhere down the road.

  5. Sounds like fun! You'll have a whole new home soon :)


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