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Old 06-23-2014, 08:08 PM   #29
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On Cloud 9!

FCloud9: Flying Cloud 20C First Shake Down

We just completed our first weekend at a nearby state park & we're happy campers despite few problems.

First, our state online reservation made six weeks prior confirmed our site selection & confirmation stated "yes" pets permitted but when we noted a check-in/ & check/out time discrepancy on our reservation compared to website info few days prior to departure; made a phone inquiry & then coincidentally learned our site was "just outside the pet zone". Despite a few more phone calls up the chain of command, our state "reservation resolution department" did not even follow through with email or call. Change of plans finding a pet sitter at last minute was somewhat stressful as our pup will be 18 yrs. this week & totally blind for approx. last six months.

Second, "anxious moment" during hitching evening prior when marker lights began flashing after connecting Tourareg ....pretty yellow strobe light effect but knew all was not well...started to think might be failure to launch. Did some researching & unplugged & reattached and tested all safety systems and no more flashing.

Next up, despite following checklists for our first launch.... approx. 5 miles from park entrance (only realized this from SIRI) our written directions (yes...this is our first vehicle w. navigation & we have been to this state park dozens of times...35 yrs. ago) ....we either missed a turn & needed to carefully pull over. Pulled out trusted iPhone & SIRI helped us out. Lesson learned...don't leave home w/o a map even if you think you know where you are going....very humbling.

Towing was effortless on both busy highway & many miles over windy, hilly, narrow country roads.
As this was only the second backup for my spouse, I apologized I did not video as he maneuvered like a pro! He was quite pleased with himself upon exiting to our site & realized campers next to us were watching the scene. We were too busy to time the camp set up time ( a practice we'd grown accustom to during our tenting & sailing days) but before you know it...we were enjoying mojitos under our zip-dee awning & breathed a sigh of relief!

It was then while sipping our mojitos we noticed the park post directly across from our site entrance for those campers with dogs & complimentary disposal bags!

Although there were no wooded pet friendly sites left, we had a nice site with added bonus. Our first night, I fell asleep watching two campfires of nearby sites viewed from our FB panoramic window!

We enjoyed great meals during our weekend all prepared in our wonderful kitchen learning to utilize all appliances with success. A good purchase for the kitchen was pretty accent rug which also serve well as a "sit upon" while finishing off the pan seared steaks in the convection oven ( yes ...you need to sit on the floor to see what you're doing but knew this when purchased) and results were excellent.

Next day...intermittent rain but we hiked through the park grounds & noted which sites we would select next time. Unfortunately, we did not have an opportunity to use our kayak but rather enjoyed our campsite relaxing on our last day.

We also learned more about our energy & water consumption so were are prepared for no hook ups when we head North. Only electric at this site & our trip to the dump as we left went so well....not sure why we had such anxiety about pulling a few handles.

We made a few notes to expand our first aid kit, tool kit, a few other items for longer trips planned later this summer. Thanks to all the excellent advice & product reviews here on the forum,we are happy with many accessories & gear we accumulated over the past few weeks for a great first shake down trip!

BTW...we really enjoyed when other campers stopped by to admire the Flying Cloud!
Had to keep pinching myself )

Forgot to add pics...add in another post
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Old 06-23-2014, 08:13 PM   #30
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Sounds like our first trip, first aid kit and tool kit.......really screwed up not having Mojito's in our onboard bar!!
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Old 06-23-2014, 08:22 PM   #31
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Flying Cloud Shake Down Pics-

Preparing to launch

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PA State Park Site

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Good results w. galley kitchen
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Old 06-24-2014, 05:19 AM   #32
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Congratulations on a such wonderful sounding shake down trip! Love the pictures. Sounds like you had no problems with your Flying Cloud. Wishing you many more happy (and stress-free) travels.
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Old 08-07-2014, 02:22 PM   #33
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Hi flying Cloud "cousins" Our shake down trip is next weekend .Going to wild duck CG in Scarbourogh Maine .Can't wait ! couple nights in the driveway so far ,has got us thinking memory foam mattress topper is on the shopping list . I'll post a pic. of lobster on my table ,Ha! second the first aid kit ,just about hit my head every time i'm in the trailer ,oh boy .I think the little compartment just inside the door for that is good. a question ,do you folks have a tv jack and power plug in the bunk area ? not sure why its there. and what's up with the back window ,it opens but no prop to hold it out ?
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Old 08-07-2014, 03:01 PM   #34
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Hi there Mazoolah,
You must be so happy to be heading out soon on your first "big adventure" to Maine. Excellent idea for photo op with lobster on the table. Please be sure to post lots of pics when you return.

We do carry a jack for both FC & Tourareg....sorry not my area of expertise but will check w. my "mechanic" at home...think it's a bottle jack. All windows needed careful prying initially but repeated driveway use has mostly solved the issue. Spouse carefully "hoards" a types gizmos & gadgets and had on hand at black hard plastic/PVC 3/4" diameter tube approx. 12-18" long wide nice soft end caps (no idea what is was originally) but has been repurposed for rear window to keep open...which is great for dishwasher.
We have now had two shake down wknd. trips 2 & 3 nights.

Few experiences: take along short bungees, or suitable tie downs for securing pantry door ( can pop open) did this first time out. Second time arrived at CG to find drawer under convection/micro slide out w. lt. rear hardware broken off & contents of drawer scattered. We're unable to repair on road - but already better than original thanks to my "handy carpenter". Drawer was not installed properly & only had very lightweight contents-dish towels, kitchen wraps, table linens. Now we will bungee lower drawer handle to towel bar under range. We now have upgraded first aid supplies in TV, FC & backpack for kayak & hiking. Unknown extra tools, etc. will be packed for our upcoming two week trip to the North Country High Peaks.
Recently added two items to cooking tools (my speciality) lodge lg. fajita pan with walnut underliner (plan to use LP stove top, oven (oval shape 13"x10") and on outside grill...also heavy cast aluminum pizza pan 12"-this was really hard to find. Both will be tested next two weekends prior to packing up for next trip.

Oh be careful what you store in your frid door shelves enroute...Tupperware top popped off homemade lemon aoli for crab cakes last wknd. still had plenty in container to enjoy but probably drained the fresh water tank cleaning up the frig mess! Fortunately, had 4 point hook up but next trip we'll be off the grid two weeks.

Will follow up on any tips can send your way!!!


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Old 08-07-2014, 05:59 PM   #35
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Mazoolah, congrats on your Flying Cloud and best of luck on your shake down! As for that pesky galley window, we figure it's just a design flaw. I wonder if they fixed it for 2015. We haven't come up with a way to keep it open, which is unfortunate when we're cooking and cleaning. May have to try FC9's idea with that PVC piece. And, yes, we have the TV jack and outlet in the bunk area -- I guess it's for people that want a second TV. Not that I can see us having two TVs in such a small space when we barely even use the one. ;-)

We just returned two weeks ago from Bar Harbor -- our first week-long trip. Had an awesome time. My partner's goal was to have lobster for at least one meal a day. He managed for all but one day. Bring on that lobstah and show us the pix! I'm curious to hear about the place in Scarborough.

FC9, it's interesting what you said about that drawer under the micro/convec; we had almost the same problem. We thought we did something wrong, but now I'm not so sure. Following one of our early trips, we did a check when we unhitched -- the drawer had slid open. At the time, we though it was because we put in too much stuff. We had our pots and pans and cutting boards in there. Removed those into a bin, yet the problem persisted on subsequent trips. At first we thought it was the drawer catch, but when we had our mechanic pull out the drawer and look at it, the rolling mechanism just fell apart. They fixed it prior to our week-long trip, on which the drawer worked fine (traveled with it empty), but on our last night, the catch system wouldn't even let us close the drawer. So we're thinking now it was the catch system all along not holding the drawer shut, which led to the rest of it breaking. Good to hear someone else's experience on that. It is being repaired now (bless that new trailer warranty when it's needed).

Happy travels to you both. We're off to Brookline, NH this weekend (Field & Stream Campground). It's probably our fave -- a very small, quiet campground where we can run into Milford, NH, to a cute little bakery and a few little diners, hike a bit at Andre's Sculpture Garden, and just chill. Check it out!

Hope to meet you on the road one of these days!

David
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Old 08-07-2014, 07:01 PM   #36
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Flying Cloud 20C Galley Window "Upgrade"
Thought a quick pic was in order to show how simple you can remedy the galley window
with simple DIY-
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Measures 15"

....excellent ventilation even with moderate rainfall.
Sorry for misunderstanding TV jack....been on AS forum too much....when I see TV it now means tow vehicle. But yes, I guess some folks need their own personal television as longer FC are equipped with one in living & sleeping bunk. We have been very happy with our purchase thus far despite few minor fixes which one would hope would have been corrected before departing to dealer.

David- I have been super cautious about storing heavy items having read hours & hours of tips from helpful forum members. Although I really wanted to buy lots of new gear, been careful not to overload. That said, there is really lots of well thought storage in this particular floorplan. I do not think I would take a FC 23 or 25 due to the alternative floorplan. Only been to NH a few times but will definitely be on the look out for your trip report.

Wild Duck CG looks amazing....trip report please & lobster pics!



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Old 08-07-2014, 08:26 PM   #37
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I guess the television jack threw me,I mean if you make the bunk with your head where the reading lamps are you can,t see the tv (over the fridge) sooo,do I put a little one at the foot of the bunk ? Or make the bunk up the other way and lose out on the reading lamps ? not a big deal of course ,I think these little quirks just stick out more in context because the trailer is so well thought out ,and well made. I may buy the parts that fit the other windows and install in the galley window. Thanks for the heads up on the drawer latches ,will look it over before we load it up,make sure it's solid.I many go crazy and buff out my aluminum canoe = for the trip ,with the f/c and my silver jeep I may blind people going up route 495 to Maine !!!!
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Old 08-07-2014, 08:50 PM   #38
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On Cloud 9!

I don't think I would add TV if not included but we are 2/2 with rainy shake down trips. Actually, with bed made up w. pillows under reading lights, TV can be extended & swiveled for my viewing but I'm only 5'4" & spouse flips other direction & dog lies where she wishes. Try the dinette conversion to lounge & top with cotton knit (Target full size fitted)...very comfy. Especially when weather is great & your campsite/backyard have picnic table.
Arrangement works nicely when one person reading or iPad while other watching movie. Each camping experience we gain new insight. Just booked another wknd. in Chesapeake area for September! We're trying for camping every month....until the first nor'easter arrives.


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Old 08-10-2014, 03:16 PM   #39
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Dave that campground in NH. Looks good ,is it far from Mt.monadnoc ? That would be a nice drive for us ,back roads around Quabin Res. Can you say foliage season,maybe try it in early Oct. ? Next month will be going to the dunes at Provincetown ,hope it's not to hot ,don't think they have 30amp hookups . I think the trailer is equipped to the max ( if I go in bead bath and beyond one more time I will scream !) just kidding .....a little .....next project ,learn to back up
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Old 08-11-2014, 05:32 AM   #40
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Mazoolah,

We really enjoy Field and Stream. It's our do-nothing-but-chill campground selection. It's about an hour from Mt. Monadnock.

If you want something closer to Mt. Monadnock, we stayed at Woodmore Campground in Rindge, NH. It's about 20 minutes from the mountain/hiking areas. Also a nice campground, but bigger. We were there in the late spring, so it was pretty quiet. It has more amenities, so I'm sure it becomes busy during the summer. But if you're thinking the fall, it would be a beautiful time, and maybe less crazy.

David
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Old 08-11-2014, 08:16 AM   #41
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That sound good too! wondering how long a travel season we will get before we have to park it for the winter. that new toy thing ,you know ! next year going to try Hilton head early (may?) with an overnight in that airstream park in Jersey ,or pos. Assateague island. Is field and stream pull thru? asked the guy that can't back up to save his life ! we gave our lower galley drawer the once over ,it looks solid, but will be carful not to over load it .Happy camping, cousins! Howie
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Old 08-25-2014, 07:10 AM   #42
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Completed our shake down trip!

Hello! Mazoola and I completed our shake down trip with our 20'FC and had the best time!
The weather cooperated, traffic wasn't bad, the CG great for 1st timers (nice & quiet), Maine scenery awesome and of course there was lobster!
We spent the weekend learning how to use everything in the unit. Still need to try out the microwave. The trailer is so comfortable - we felt totally spoiled!
Wild Duck CG in Scarborough, ME is very small with mostly seasonal occupants. They book up well in advance but we were able to get in on a cancellation. The CG is located adjacent to a large salt mash - so lots of cool birds to watch. Very peaceful.
We are interested in trying Field & Stream in Oct. Thanks Dot Dave for the reco!
Our next trip is to The Dunes in Ptown weekend of 9/5. I am reading that the sites are tight for parking.... But I know hubby can do it! Can't wait to go!
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