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Is email ever really priv...
Forum: Wifi/Cellular/Computers
Last Post: GotSmart
03-28-2023, 07:31 PM
» Replies: 1
» Views: 44
A different type of campi...
Forum: Job Opportunities
Last Post: rvpopeye
03-28-2023, 04:30 AM
» Replies: 216
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Doom Despair and Agony on...
Forum: Passenger
Last Post: sternwake
03-27-2023, 08:43 AM
» Replies: 25
» Views: 1,002
Code name “Baby”
Forum: Passenger
Last Post: GypsyDogs
03-26-2023, 01:26 PM
» Replies: 121
» Views: 6,226
Ridgid drill/driver kit w...
Forum: Product Reviews
Last Post: sternwake
03-24-2023, 08:22 PM
» Replies: 24
» Views: 541
How to find a van
Forum: Passenger
Last Post: Kyz
03-21-2023, 02:04 PM
» Replies: 16
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What is going on in a min...
Forum: Solar/Electrical Sparky Camp
Last Post: sternwake
03-11-2023, 07:30 PM
» Replies: 8
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Free, and clear modular a...
Forum: Sternwake's Corner
Last Post: rvpopeye
03-08-2023, 07:17 AM
» Replies: 4
» Views: 174
100 amp Powermax adjustab...
Forum: Sternwake's Corner
Last Post: sternwake
03-07-2023, 09:26 PM
» Replies: 30
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Forum: Generators - Gas , Diesel , Solar , Wind , Water
Last Post: GypsyDogs
03-07-2023, 03:12 AM
» Replies: 2
» Views: 236

  Is email ever really private?
Posted by: rvpopeye - 03-28-2023, 07:08 AM - Forum: Wifi/Cellular/Computers - Replies (1)

Yes , no or don't care , here's a vid about it.

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  How to find a van
Posted by: Kyz - 03-20-2023, 12:46 PM - Forum: Passenger - Replies (16)

Not an instructional post, a question...

Seriously, how do you find a van (short of shelling out big bucks)?

Hoping for a few helpful hints (I'm looking at you Gypsy!) Big Grin

What I'm finding is a lot of overpriced vans.

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  Ridgid drill/driver kit with 2, 2.0AH batteries
Posted by: sternwake - 03-13-2023, 11:20 PM - Forum: Product Reviews - Replies (24)

I had a 18v Makita Kit, the white and black models, for about a decade, but the batteries became nearly completely worthless in the last 18 months, and 2 new actual Makita batteries cost 80% the cost of a new drill driver kit with new batteries.  Was not going to risk the generic battery replacements.

So, I was using an ancient old Craftsman 9.6v drill, with ~8 feet of 12AWG, to my 18 or 22AH AGM batteries via APP's for any task requiring strength and duration, but the 18Ag AGM battery is 11 Lbs and the cord gets annoying. 
 Gobs of torque and torque for days though.
  The motor could pull as much as 35 amps.  
Its showing its age and abuse, but made the cut in the move, the Makita's didnt. 

So new drill and driver needed.
Basically dedicating to a battery system, although there are now adapters to use one tool's batteries in another brand tool.

I had it narrowed my decision to Dewalt, or Ridgid.
The 20v Dewalt kit was 20$ more and comes with 1.3AH batteries, the Ridgid 18v kit comes with  2.0AH batteries.

Beware of marketing.  In the US, the battery pack can be rated at its full charge voltage, instead of the nominal voltage of the cells within.  In South Africa for instance, Dewalt's battery has to be called 18v, in the USA they call it 20v.  Both ridgid and dewalt use  5, 18650 cells, in series.

Ridgid also has the 'lifetime service agreement', meaning if one registers it properly within 90 days of purchase, they fix it free, for original owner, forever, and dead batteries, replaced for free too whether failed or just worn out and no more capacity.

I thought what other cordless tools that I might like to acquire in the future, and checked out what was available between the two brands. I also checked out additional battery prices, and Ridgid has 2, 4.0 Ah battery deal going,  for 99$, which is far less than Dewalt's offerings, or pretty much any other brand.

So, I Figured I go Ridgid.  I used a Ridgid  contractor's Tablesaw at a friend's workshop, and liked it far more than my Makita contractor's tablesaw.
Another friend had the Ridgid heavy ass iron top workshop tablesaw, and it was almost dreamy to use after the portable models.

I've own a corded Ridgid jigsaw for 6+ years now,  and like its design and function, though I never bothered to register it for the LSA.

I had no experience with cordless Ridgid products

So the Kit arrives 2 days after ordering, via fedex. 
The impact driver's gearbox seems a bit loud and gritty, but had no issues driving 45 3.5 inch screws into old hardened treated lumber.
 The drill's trigger is a bit weird, At first I though it was a delay, but more recently realized the first 1/4 inch of movement illuminates the light, and after that range it responds instantly.  Takes some getting used to  after the instant response of the other drill's triggers, that I am used to.

I don't know why they insist in 6500K+ blueish LEDS. I'd understand if they were super bright, but I find the output a bit lacking and far too blue. 

The batteries are not really a super tight fit in the drill/driver.

The battery charger's wall wart says 18v, 60 watt output,  but voltage has to go as high as 21v to fully charge 5 18650 in series.

I drained the batteries to 1 of 4 bars, down in to the 17.3vDC range, split the wire and used my clampmeter to see how much amperage it allowed the batteries to feed on.  2 amps exactly, lets assume 21 volts, and  42 watts.

Should take about an hour to fully charge a dead battery to full, but I did not drain completely, nor charge until the charger quit, nor use a timer.

My Makita charger was bulky, had a noisy fan for force flow feed the battery, and would draw far more than 40 watts via my PSW inverter IIRC, but was 15 minute charger too.

Anyway,  I don't think the Ridgid has the fit and finish of the Makita's I owned, but I spent more on them 10+ years ago, than the Ridgids 3 weeks ago.
My Makita drill developed gearbox issues, and at the end needed new brushes, but with the capacity free batteries and weird intermittent gearbox issue, i just gave up on the drill entirely rather than order 8$ of brushes and install them.

The Ridgid did not come with the handy hooks to hang on a belt, or waist band or pocket, but I ordered some cheap generics.

Been contemplating a leaf/jobsite blower.  Ridgid offers 3.

While comparing the three, I saw that the two ,4.0Ah battery deal for 99$, was now 79$, for the next 5 days. 

Trying hard to not click 'add to cart'.

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Posted by: GypsyDogs - 02-25-2023, 12:36 PM - Forum: Generators - Gas , Diesel , Solar , Wind , Water - Replies (2)

A little while back, I got a Bluetti EB55 - nice little unit, good size, does what I need..
Used it maybe a dozen times for various things.. took it on a roadtrip.. and it failed catastrophically 
Tried a few things… nope- full failure.
Out of warranty.. more sadness.

On a whim- contacted Bluetti and expressed my sadness over the failure of their unit.
They asked a bit more detail, which I provided. 
They asked me to return it for replacement.
I Cheerfully Agreed!

This return is in process- I will update you when I receive my replacement Big Grin

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  Keep the e150 or no?
Posted by: Reesedee - 02-20-2023, 04:12 PM - Forum: Mechanical Problems - Replies (8)

Hey all - I have an 85 high top e150, not built out yet but all the components have been purchased. I've had a hard time finding mechanics who will work on it. Supposedly bc its old, it's easy. I've noticed when I say "camper" they immediately turn me down. I'm in the bay area so I don't know what its like other places. 

Long story short-A street mechanic was messing around with it until it wouldn't start at all. Now I'm contemplating - will it be difficult to find a mechanic in the future, and should I start over on a newer year (97 Chevy express?) And different model? I want to get it lifted for overlanding (a whole other discussion). I do have some mechanical inclinations, but I don't want to be reliant on my own skills if I have work/deadlines/can't drop everything to spend 3 days on a "3 hour job".

So what do yall think? Do I just get it done and sell it? Is an 85 e150 gonna be cut out for full time vanlife? Or am I setting myself to be enslaved to this thing with constant breakdowns?

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  Registering/Insuring a van/ bus/truck as an RV
Posted by: rvpopeye - 02-17-2023, 08:38 PM - Forum: Builds,Modifications and Restorations - Replies (15)

If you can , you should.
State DMV , BMV etc. are generally easy to find online . 
Shop insurance co.'s , policies vary or not available at all depending on who you ask
Some helpful links:



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  Metal Detecting Finds
Posted by: Kyz - 02-15-2023, 01:25 PM - Forum: Hobbies - Replies (8)

I'm going to share photos of all the JUNK I'm finding. Please feel free to share pics of what you find, junk or not. 

I'll spare you the total trash like wads of tin foil. Smile

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  Code name “Baby”
Posted by: GypsyDogs - 02-15-2023, 12:26 PM - Forum: Passenger - Replies (121)

Found a new (to me) van.  PO called her Baby
1995 Dodge 2500 204k on the Odo, 70k on reman motor.
Lots of recent med-big ticket items (have receipts)
Classic conversion van.


She’s going to need some refit to be a live-aboard, but good bones!

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  Just a guy with a van
Posted by: FloridaBrian - 02-13-2023, 01:06 PM - Forum: Welcome Center - Replies (11)

Hey fellow wanderers. My name is Brian, my home base is in Florida, and I've got a van that I'll never be done adding to  Big Grin
I stumbled upon a Truckin' magazine from the mid 70's in my teens, early 00's. Fell in love with the Cragars, VenturiVents, over the top interiors, and knew I'd have a van someday. Well, I don't have a classic, though it's a 2006 so it's getting there in due time lol
I bought my E150 in December of 2019 (terrible time to make any plans, as we noticed a few months later). I wanted something low top, small, that looked like any other van. Stealth was important, until later down the line I added a couple of solar panels on the roof and a MaxFann. Still love my little low top though. 
I didn't actually start throwing things at my van until early last year. I was just using it as a daily driver to get me to and from work, and taking random, spur of the moment trips a few hundred miles out, roughing it in the van, and heading back. 
Still not really done, but since adding the solar, 100ah lithium, small pure sine inverter, 40qt compressor fridge, bed platform, memory foam mattress, and other small odds and ends, I've taken it for a long stretch in the Appalachia region and enjoyed every minute of it. It may not be done, it may not be pretty, but I've gotten by with much less for much longer. 
I'll cut it short because I can ramble for ages. I'm in the process of saving up now, taking off again, and hopefully getting a workamping gig soon. Hope to see y'all on the road. Safe travels.

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  Baby: I have a surprise for you
Posted by: GypsyDogs - 02-12-2023, 01:32 PM - Forum: Passenger - Replies (12)

New news coming soon:

(Select few- do not ruin the surprise, please.. thank you)

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