Open Range 386 FLR, a new breed of front living room

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Just like home, spacious front living room.

The Open Range 386 FLR is the newest entry in the front living room fifth wheel RV line up.  This floor plan is every customers “dream come true”! Loaded with every feature and benefit you have come to expect from Open Range.  From the spacious dual slide-out front living room with opposing air bed sleeper sofas and wall hugging recliner, to the step up rear king master bedroom.  What helps to set the Open Range 386 FLR apart from all the other front living room fifth wheels on the market is the storage area under the rear bedroom.  This storage space provides you with an additional 170 cubic feet of exterior storage, on top of the standard front basement storage that is normally found on every Open Range RV.

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The spacious living room features plenty of storage options, an electric fireplace, as well as a 42″ LED TV on an electric lift.  Once the TV is lowered into the storage position, the window in the front cap is exposed to provide you with the natural light that other front living room 5th wheels limit.  The living room includes an area for a comfortable wall hugging recliner.  The iron work railing helps to add a decorative touch to the openness of the living room.

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The front window allows natural light to filter in.

The kitchen is centrally located in the trailer and is as wide open as the living room.  Solid Alderwood storage cabinets and Corian counter-tops await and  beckon your use..  A large side by side, 12 cubic foot gas/electric Norcold refrigerator is waiting to be filled.  The free-standing dinette table expands to accommodate seat six people.

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The step up rear king bedroom provides you with even more interior storage.  Once you enter the bedroom you will first notice the dual sliding glass door wardrobe, six storage dresser drawers, and even more additional wardrobe storage. You have full storage under the king bed as well. With full TV/cable/satellite hook ups located above the wardrobe slide.

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The bathroom will not disappoint you either.  From the large shower with sliding glass doors, a large linen closet and vanity with vessel style sink.  The vanity provides you with ample counter top space and even more storage.

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This exciting new fifth wheel is a new breed apart.  This front living room fifth wheel is a true four season unit, complete with R38 floor and R38 roof insulation.  An automatic leveling and stabilizing system allows for easy setup.  Four 20lb LP tanks provide you with 80lbs of propane over the industry standard 60lbs.  All of this is standard on an Open Range RV.  Take a step into an all new Open Range 386 FLR to experience the new standard in front living room fifth wheels.

Be sure to visit Pennsylvania’s largest Open Range RV Dealership, Lerch RV.

Open Range RV dicontinues the Rolling Thunder Toy Hauler 5th wheel camper

Put out to Pasture; the Rolling Thunder by Open Range RV

Open Range RV dicontinues the Rolling Thunder Toy Hauler 5th wheel camper

The Rolling Thunder Toy Hauler by Open Range RV has been put out to pasture.

I would like to inform my readers of the end of a great run.  At the time of this blog posting, the Open Range Rolling Thunder Toy Hauler product line is no more. The Rolling Thunder, with its stampeding herd of horses logo, has been put out to pasture by the Shipshewana, Indiana RV manufacturer.  The Rolling Thunder has been part of Open Range RV’s stable for about two and a half years.  Slow sales and subtle shifts of interest by RV consumers were believed to be several of the determining factors in the discontinuation of the toy hauler product line.

The Rolling Thunder was introduced to the public in 2009 as a toy hauler designed to be more comfy and utilitarian in design than its competition.  The Rolling Thunder was the fifth wheel toy hauler that was ‘not on steroids’ as owner Randy Graber noted.  The Rolling Thunder product line did not feature over the top interior designs in decor or graphics, but gave the owner of the toy hauler more comforts of home.  The four season unit was light weight by industry standards.  As of the time of writing this, there has been no news of a replacement toy hauler product from the manufacturer.

Here at Lerch RV, we currently have one Rolling Thunder H345 MPR left in inventory, having sold over twenty-five Rolling Thunders in previous years.  Come visit our Milroy, Pennsylvania location and see why we are the largest Open Range dealership in the commonwealth.  And maybe you will leave here with a great deal on a great trailer.

Happy Trails Rolling Thunder…

Open Range RV's Rolling Thunder toy hauler out to pasture

Safe Travels and Happy RVing!

Stay warm on those cold RV nights

With the weather starting to get colder, and the days shorter, you are probably experiencing a bit of a chill at night now. This is also the time of year where you are still RVing in cooler climates before either heading south for the winter or storing your RV until next season. Staying warm and comfortable in your RV is a key to have a great trip this time of year. No one likes sleepless nights shivering the whole time, so how should you stay warm? The easy answer is your RV furnace, but you may be out at a camp site when that breaks down, so what are you back up options?
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The two most popular choices are heating strips and portable heaters. Like all things, there are pros and cons that go with both, and it is more of a preferential choice. Let’s look at portable heaters first. The great thing about these are that they do a good job heating a small space. At night, shut the door to your room and turn one of these on and you will stay warm through out the night. They are also quiet, which is key to falling asleep. The problem with them is that they tend to break down easily over time. If you buy one you can expect to buy another after a few years. Also, there is always to risk of fire with these heaters, due to the exposed heating coils. If you use one, be sure to put it in a safe place out of contact with combustibles.

Another option is a heating strip. A heating strip is installed in the air conditioner and it is a 1500 watt heater. This option is good because it is generally more reliable than the portable heater, and it doesn’t take up any extra space in the RV. The not so great part about them is that you have to run your A/C fan through the night, and it doesn’t heat your rig nearly as well as the portable heater. You won’t freeze to death with one, but you won’t be toasty.

If all else fails, keep extra quilts and blankets in your RV and bundle up for warmth. If you are looking for a new RV ta stay warm in, be sure to come into Lerch RV.

Have you ever thought about owning a Campground or RV Park?

As RV owners, we travel to campgrounds and RV Parks often. We usually stay a few days…or longer, if we are full-timers…and then go on our way. We almost always have an opinion of the place before we leave, but have we ever thought about owning one of these places?

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Here is an opportunity to explore this option a bit further. The National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC) has an upcoming conference in late November in Savannah, Georgia.

‘Where Outdoor Hospitality Meets Southern Hospitality’ is the theme for the 2011 Outdoor Hospitality Conference and Expo (OHCE) to be held November 30 to December 2. There will also be some pre-convention events in the days leading up to Nov. 30.

This all takes place at the Westin Savannah Harbor Golf Resort and Spa and Savannah International Trade and Convention Center.

The educational programs have been revised to include all types of the outdoor hospitality industry. Here are some of the educational program key areas of focus:

  • Business Management
  • Business Technology
  • Employee Training and Motivation
  • The Latest in Green Technology
  • Marketing and Public Relations
The Westin has even discounted their rates for attendees. If you need more information, go to the ARVC website.
This looks to be a great opportunity to learn more about the outdoor hospitality industry, regardless of whether you want to own a RV Park, or just work in one!

‘Steps’ to a safer RVing experience.

One of the pieces on your RV that you probably don’t think much about and that you use all the time, is the steps that are at the entrance of your camper.  The bad part is that since these aren’t given much attention, problems can occur that can be very dangerous to you and your fellow campers.  Whether it’s stability issues, traction or corrosion of the actual steps, all these things can have a serious impact on you if you do not take care and check them periodically.

static/manual rv steps

Typical type of static steps found on most travel trailer and fifth wheel campers.

There are generally two different kinds of steps that come on RVs, electric steps which fold down when the door is opened, which are typically found on Motor-Homes. And static steps that either stay down or are pulled down by hand, which are normally found on travel trailers and fifth wheels.  Let’s look at the problems that can occur with mechanical steps.  One of the most basic problems is that the sensor or motor will stop working, leaving you walking out expecting to find a step where there is none.  While you may able to stop your fall, you may fall out and injure your ankle or foot.  So be sure to look down and make sure your step is where it should be.  Another problem is exposed or frayed wires.  Unfortunately, there was a death this year when a young RVer was wet and barefoot, and when he stepped on his metal step that had exposed wires, he was electrocuted to death. Be sure to exam your steps and all wiring to insure that they are all working as they should. This should be done at a time when you already have to have your rig looked at, such as during your annual state inspection.

One of the biggest problems with non-electric steps, or static steps is that they are not built as strong, making the step a weaker.  After years of sun UV damage, water, and road grime, they can weaken and suddenly break off.  If you are an older RVer, this puts you at risk for encountering hip problems or hard falls.  Just be sure that every few months you check your steps by pushing them with your hands, or have another person put pressure on them, while you are looking at the step for any cracks that may be appearing.

For both types of steps you should have taken preventive maintenance into mind, spraying the pivot points of both types of steps with WD40 or a dry type of silicon lubricate, will keep those points working easily.  The traction strips on some steps wear down with use, these can be easily replace with stick on strips found at most home improvement stores or a spray on form of traction paint.  One other thing you can do to help prevent corrosion, is to hit your steps with a coat of spray paint once a year, this will also help with curb appeal as well.

While working on steps isn’t the most glamorous chore for an RVer, it is essential to your safety and the safety of those utilizing your camper with you.

If you suspect your steps are in need of repair or replacement. Be sure to ask our qualified service department about having those RV steps fixed the next time you are visiting Lerch RV.

A few tips to keep Ants from Invading your RV…

Ants marching toward Lerch RV, how to keep ants from invading your RV/Camper...

When you are RVing at a campground or boon docking in the wilderness, you are susceptible to all kinds of insects and animals.

Ants are one of the more aggravating creatures to invade a RV, fortunately they are easy to get rid of. RV Travel shares this advice for us.

We woke up in our RV one fine morning with an upset cat. A large, black, moving column of ants, working its way across the RV from a crack near the entry door, across the flooring, up the wall cabinet, and into the kitchen sink. Hundreds of the little buggers, all intent on carrying away whatever it is that struck their fancy.

ANTS ARE CLEVER CREATURES – they send out scouts who scurry about the territory, looking for suitable food and water sources. If one crawls up your RV tire, water hose or power cable and eventually finds something inside your rig, he or she leaves a little smell trail of pheromones. Your proboscis won’t pick up on it, but to the ants, it’s an irresistible essence that must be followed — by hundreds of the scout’s fellows.

For whatever reason, ants won’t cross a line of bleach-containing scouring powder. Maybe it kills the pheromone trail, maybe it burns their little feet, we don’t know.

In any event, get out the Comet and shake a good border around everything of your rig that touches the ground: Tires, landing gear, stabilizers, cords, and hoses. This is better than spraying insecticide on these utilities, because the powdered cleanser will simply shake off, not stick to your hands, nor cause grief for pets and kids.

Of course, if the rains fall you may need to renew your magic circle, but while the powder’s out, the ants are gone.

This is a pretty easy fix. I wish it was this easy to repel other bugs or animals like, say, bears!

No, bears are nothing to laugh at. Now you should be equipped with some ant knowledge and some “bear” knowledge.

What more do you need? A new RV you say? We can equip you with that too!

More RV and Camping Safety Tips

You may read about RV and camper safety a lot when you’re surfing the internet or picking up the latest Trailer Life magazine. Personally I think you can never learn too much or think too often when it comes to RV safety. And as with anything else in life, practice what you read and preach.  To many times safety is placed on the back burner of our thought process when it comes to hitching up the wagon and hitting the road.  Many of my previous posts have been about RV and camping safety.  I can not stress how import this subject matter is.  So once again here are some more RV safety tips to think about….

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Never paint the tank a dark color. It can absorb the sun’s rays and can cause it to overheat and explode.

  • Don’t travel with the stove, oven or heater burners lit.
  • Never refuel while any propane appliance or engine is running.
  • If you have an older propane tank, make sure it has an overfill protection device.
  • Install a propane gas detector.

Create a step-by-step checklist!!

Before you drive:

  • Make sure bay doors are closed and latched.
  • Double-check tow bar and safety cables.
  • Disconnect all power, TV, phone, water and sewer lines.
  • Retract jacks, steps, and awnings.
  • Look under the rig for signs of fluid leaks.
  • Check oil, transmission and coolant levels.
  • Check air brakes, parking brake and tow brakes.
  • Inspect tire inflation pressure and tread wear.
  • Make sure smoke and propane leak detectors are working.

Practice S.A.F.E Cornering:

RVers must compensate for the extra weight, height and length of their vehicles when cornering. Practice S.A.F.E. cornering:

  • Slowly approach the turn. It’s much easier to speed up in the corner than have to brake.
  • Arc the turn, careful to not arc the first swing in the opposite direction, confusing drivers behind as to where you really intend to go.
  • Finish the turn completely. Drivers make a common mistake when they straighten before the back-end of the vehicle has cleared the pivot point.
  • Experience is key. The best way to become a good RV driver is practice, practice, practice.[GMAC Insurance]

There are some good tidbits that I think you can print out and keep in your RV to refer back to every once in a while. That is if you like. I truly hope you have enjoyed some of these safety tips! That way next time you hit the road you will know that you and your family are good to go!

Have a great weekend adventure, run by on your way back so we can hear all about it.  And, if there is anything we can do to help, let us know!!

Safe Travels and Happy RVing!