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About Gayla

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  1. Gayla

    Dolphin Noob!

    So the Dolphin is home now! An uneventful trip, although it took a day longer than expected to actually get here. Averaged about 13mpg which I think is good considering all the mountains between Ft. Collins and Colorado. Went today and got the title switched over and picked up the plates. Yay for no emissions check needed! We also found a place to store it for $75 a month. It's an uncovered spot at mini storage place we have a unit in. Since we're in a condo, it makes it tough since we can't just leave it in the driveway. Hopefully that will change soon though! So, as I expected, the questions are filling up my mind! We did pull it into the parking lot this morning and I got to actually see the top of it from our balcony, rather than crawling up on it. It looked like there were some holes of some sort around the bathroom vent. I don't see any evidence of water leaking into the bathroom and I can't actually see light around the fan so I'm wondering if this is actually leaking someplace where I wouldn't be able to see it? We got a couple of big brown envelopes full of booklets for the microwave, awning, water heater, etc. but there wasn't an owner's manual for the actual RV itself. Since I don't have any idea of how to actually work the various systems, is there any other type of book I could get that would help explain what I'm supposed to do? My main concern is the holding tanks and propane systems. Since it will be parked outside and uncovered, and since there may be some leaks we haven't found yet, I'm thinking I need to get a cover. Any suggestions for types of covers, places to purchase, etc.? I'm sure this is just a start to the bajillion and two questions I'll have! Thanks for all your help. This noob appreciates it!
  2. Gayla

    Dolphin Noob!

    Thanks for the advice and the welcome! She dropped it off at the mechanic this afternoon and they'll be looking it over tomorrow and maybe have it back by Monday. When she pulled into the parking lot, the shop owner came out to see what was wrong and was shocked to see that it was someone new driving it! Apparently this is the same mechanic the previous owner used and he had taken it in just a few weeks ago for an oil change. They've been doing the work on this unit for several years and know all about it! I'll make sure to add fuel and air filters and rear axle and tranny fluid to the list and I already talked about the tire date. Today's good news - it does have dash air, she just didn't know to look for the little AC button! Had it all nice and chilly on the drive to the shop today! I think I'm getting excited about this now!
  3. Gayla

    Dolphin Noob!

    My most recent RV experience was 30+ years ago when I was twelve and all I had to do was ride in the cab over while Mom and Dad drove and did everything else. I can count on two hands the number of times I've even camped since then. More recently, we've started "camping" in the mini van (read: took out all the back seats and threw down some camp pads and a comforter so we can sleep in the back when we get tired of driving during our travels). But that's all about to change! We saw an ad for a Dolphin on Craigslist a few days ago and it looked about perfect for us. Of course, knowing nothing about Dolphins and being the geek that I am, I immediately googled and ended up here. My partner, not being much of a geek at all, went to see it and wrote a check for $3,900. "It's cute and looks like they took care of it and it has these neat little baskets in all of the cabinets so I decided we had to have it!" So, this evening, she took possession of a 1984 Dolphin. It is in Ft Collins, Colorado where she has been visiting family. We live in the Seattle area. That's about 1862 miles away. In my very brief few days of reading everything I could on this site, I've started thinking that we may be in for more of an adventure than I first thought. Here's what I know about it so far - 1984, less than 60k miles on it, 4 cyl, 4 sp, no dash AC but roof AC in the back, small leak under the sink in the bathroom. The person we bought it from is the second owner and had to sell because their HOA at their new house will not allow them to park it in the driveway and they can't afford to pay to store it. Still has all of the original manuals. Not sure about maintaince records. The first thing my googling turned up was the axle issue. The rear wheels show 6 lug nuts. From the FAQ I read, this should tell me that the axle was replaced and is ok? Is there something else we need to check just to make sure before she begins the drive home? Sometime in the next few days, she's taking it to the mechanic that her family has used for many years and trusts with all of their vehicles. So far on the list is an oil change and have him check fluids, hoses, belts, tires and brakes. Is there anything we should add to that list before she sets out on the journey? Oh, and am I correct in thinking that the 84 Dolphin is just like an 84 Toyota truck from a mechanical standpoint? I had an 84 pickup for years so I'm hoping it's the same because I'm pretty familiar with it. As for the RV part of it all, I'm clueless and once we get it home, I'm going to have to figure it all out! I've read some really good stuff here but quite a bit of it has just led to more questions. Propane, batteries, holding tanks, electricity, airbags, water heaters. Oh, and the current owner said something about never having used the furnace because it had to be level for it to work?!? I think I will go find the Dummies book tomorrow. In the meantime, any helpful hints, suggestions, things you wish you knew when you were in my spot, would be greatly appreciated! As overwhelming as it all is, I'm really excited about having a new project to work on!