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Old 02-04-2008, 02:55 PM   #81
Montana Master
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Windsor
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Wow, what a story!!! We just joined yesterday and were glued to your plight. Glad things worked out finally for you folks.

I was interested in your photos and have a suggestion. I noticed that your sewer pipe was directly connected to the black pipe. We invested in a clear elbow that attaches from the pipe to your sewer hose. I don't stop flushing the black tank until the water is clear. It also has a hose connection to back flush if you need to. My old TT has a mostly flat tank similar to the Montana. I was initially surprised to see how much water it took to get a 'clear flow'. The clear elbow takes out the guess work.

Good luck and thanks for the great lesson!

Ken & Marilyn
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Old 02-04-2008, 03:10 PM   #82
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We have a clear section but it is in the middle of our sewer hose. We have a couple strung together and we have a clear section between our quick connect sections. Pretty gross to watch, but very, very useful!!!!

Welcome to the forum! We are glad things have worked out too!
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Old 02-04-2008, 04:08 PM   #83
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I have read with rapt interest the previous 8 pages of posts on this issue and want to chime in...

We have been having black tank issues, as well. We normally go about 7 days before she burps, telling us that she needs to be dumped, and we are now down to about 5 days. I attribute this dramatic situation to two things. 1), we have been sitting for about 3 months; and 2) it is REALLY cold here in Phoenix: it snowed in the mountains!

In all seriousness, we are NOT envious of either Icehouse or the Matthews. Both of you have demonstrated tenacity so far superior to that of the general population; we both hope to meet both of you in the future so that we can laugh about these situations in a summer environment with lots of alcohol!

Thank you for reminding us all that we are lucky to be able to be living this RV life...

It's cold here and we're wanting sun...
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Old 02-04-2008, 04:34 PM   #84
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Thanks for the details on that access door for the basement, Bernie!
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Old 02-04-2008, 06:43 PM   #85
stiles watson
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Outstanding and courageous problem solving. Your suggestions are pragmatic. Bringing order to the chaos in the belly has been suggested previously, but alas.

I hope you have a few weeks of peace and quiet now. Congratulations on the new job. Happy RVing....
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Old 02-05-2008, 04:46 AM   #86
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Tissue digester works very good but it must sit in the tank for a few days. In very warm weather it takes two or three days. The colder it is the longer it takes. It is not an immediate fix. Black tank problems are not fun.
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Old 02-05-2008, 05:40 AM   #87
Trailer Trash 2
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This thred seems to be reaching a HEAD, Maybe. I think? Pretty DARK subject, It flowed better than the poster wished his did, So true are the words "S_it rolls down hill" but not in this case.

Pulling a 2004, 2980 RL an oldie but goodie.
Tow vehicle is a 2009 RED RAM 3500 DRW.
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Old 02-09-2008, 05:10 AM   #88
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Hi Icehouse sounds like you have the trailer well under control. I'm back from another week at work and staying in the camper for the week. Saw temp down to just a mere 7 at night. I guess you could say this week was bubble wrap week for winterizing the Monty. I installed bubble wrap to all but the window over the counter to help with the cold air that falls off the glass. This idea also might help with drafts around the slides, I cut foam pipe wrap into quarters and stuffed to around all the slide seals and the wall. I have another trick with bubble wrap to share, the floor on my slides are really not insulated so I moved the table and couch out of the main slide and inserted more bubble wrap between the carpet and plywood floor. Good luck in the weeks to come!!
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Old 02-09-2008, 07:49 AM   #89
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Dear Icehouse:
Let me first say that I think you both deserve the Cold (ha), I mean Gold Star Award for living in a 5th wheel in Alaska! That said, when I read about your problem and mentioned it to my husband, he said, "don't you remember using Thetford TP in our first motorcoach's restroom and how it plugged the toilet? (which also happened in the middle of winter...brrrr). We stopped using that c - - - - y TP immediately! I did a little TP research on my own, and discovered that the one-ply Scott tissue worked very well. We also used it in our little Class C without problems. There is also a fairly new (out about a year and a half) TP meant for RV's, etc., which is made, I think, by Scott or one of the more common manufacturers. We have used that too without problems, however it is more expensive. Scott recently brought a new two-ply product which is supposed to be softer. Obviously, it is heavier as well. They still make the one-ply, in fact, the package now sports the logo "septic safe". I'm glad to hear that Angel Soft works well too.
Stay warm... Stay safe... Stay Happy!! (I think it's great that you can maintain your sense of humor through it all).
God Bless
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Old 02-10-2008, 04:57 AM   #90
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You guys are great. I to am very handy but limit myself to better conditions, there for I stand up and applaud you's.Good job.

That brings to mind a story my neighbour told me back in the 80,s. He had a travel trailer and his black tank also would not drain. He sat on the ground in front of the outlet and tried to free the TP with a metal rod. It worked but he did not get the hose hooked up in time. And you know the rest of the story.

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Old 02-10-2008, 02:17 PM   #91
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Now if we could just get internet in this campground, I'd be 100%
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Old 02-10-2008, 03:27 PM   #92
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Send a message via MSN to Ozzie
It's near unbelievable what you've been going through up there...I know once you hit 20 and lower things start to get dicey.
I've enjoyed reading of your escapades and tenacious spirits. My hats off to you for finding a way to keep that smile.
I personally would be investing in tank heaters and pipe tape to make sure things stay liquid...and plenty of SnowShoe Grog...LOL
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Old 02-11-2008, 01:35 AM   #93
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Drove the Park Ave up from Central FL Fri/Sat just in time to get here in NW Lower MI just before the blizzard set in. 50 mph winds and 1 degree (-25 wind chill). Although, moderately protected from the wind, the car would not start yesterday - ignition problems in this cold.

To think that I toyed - albeit briefly - with the idea of hauling the Montana up here for two weeks of winter camping for our trip up here for our daughter's C-section birth scheduled for this coming Fri.

I feel better about working on the car's ignition system in this stuff, as compared to working on the underbelly and tanks of the 3400 in this weather... Just when you think you have it bad, someone else comes along and proves that there are much worse possibilities out there. Thanks, Bernie and Tammy!
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Old 02-11-2008, 06:46 AM   #94
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Bruce, we have got heat tape on anything Bernie could find to heat tape!!!!! Ha Ha! I'm just waiting for Elly Mae to start panting!
I must say, even with having to hunt and peck for internet service down in this valley, I wouldn't change anything for the world. It is so beautiful!
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Old 02-11-2008, 02:34 PM   #95
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Tammy as yall may know I have been deep in the belly of my monty I also cut a big hole in the basement to get to the top of my tank so I know what yall are going though. I like bernies idea about moving the main drain forward I have been getting under my slide to hookup the drain since it was new. I will look at that soon. If bernie keeps up he may become an ozz jr lol. I admire yall and wayne and carolyn yall stay warmmmmm. bobby
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Old 02-11-2008, 03:10 PM   #96
Wayne and Carolyn Mathews
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Still no internet, Tammy and Bernie? I thought for sure you would have coerced the campground into having internet for all by now!

We haven't had any more weather-related issues, not even when we had four days of -25 weather two weeks ago. Well, maybe we did have one issue--our two Australian shepherds decided they'd had enough of life in their fenced and heated kennel, so they started digging out every night and standing at our door whining. It worked--they are now indoors with us from sundown to sunup. I honestly think the cat sat in the window and smirked at them until they decided they should be indoors, too.

We are suffering through a Chinook at the moment--high winds 24/7 and warmer temperatures (well, relatively warmer temps as in 38 rather than 20 for a high). On the bright side, our builder is starting the foundation of our house this week. On the dark side, we are marooned in a sea of mud and water from the melting snow. Also on the dark side is the fact that we ARE starting a new house; we wish now that we'd followed our hearts and hit the road in our Monty instead. The older we get, the more we realize that if we keep putting things off, we aren't going to ever do the things we've worked hard to be able to do.

Wednesday afternoon if the Chinook is still here, we plan to remove the skirting and haul our rig to town to clean it up, particularly the blackwater tank. After reading all the posts about the difference between dumping and cleaning the tank and dumping and REALLY cleaning the tank, I can hardly wait to get to town and irritate a whole bunch of travelers who are going to have to wait in line until we're satisfied that our blackwater tank is truly clean. (So, if any fellow MOCers are traveling on Interstate 15 between the Canadian and Idaho borders, they might not want to head into Dillon to use the one and only dump station open in town on Wednesday afternoon because we'll be there, cleaning . . . cleaning . . . cleaning.)

The skirting will go back into place Wednesday evening. Chinooks don't last, but Montana sub-zero temperatures do. Jeez, I hate to pack up and/or anchor all our loose stuff for that trip to town, but if we don't go now, we may be frozen to the ground for another 2 months after this nasty warm spell departs. And, as I said, I'm having nightmares about the possibility of blackwater tank problems aggravated by freezing temperatures.

Keep us posted on life in Seward--you definitely win the "Who can camp in the coldest place" contest this week! Do you always have water and heat? And is the plumbing working consistently? Inquiring minds want to know!

Carolyn & Wayne
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Old 02-12-2008, 05:20 PM   #97
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Hello Everyone, we are still without phont, cable, internet, etc. WE are sitting in out truck outside the office using a very weak internet connection. We are enjoying the beauty instead of technology. We now have a large LP tank that should solve all our lp issues. Please see out Heating Propane Tank discussionfor our fix approvd by our LP dealer (if our internet connection will allow us to post.
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Old 02-13-2008, 03:45 PM   #98
Clyde n Deb
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OK, I see this has been a forgettable experience. I have one question looking at your photos: based on the temps you two are in, why have you not skirted your coach, or did I miss something?
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Old 02-13-2008, 05:57 PM   #99
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Skirting is in the works. Now that we are not going to Canada we can start working on that. Will be done! I promise!
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Old 02-29-2008, 07:04 PM   #100
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Hi, Bernie & Tammy, Have you tried using the wand that you attach to a hose and use from the inside? We can identify with your problem because we had even more severe problems with our piece of ___ Cougar lemon before the dealer finally took it back. They changed out the black water tank and dump valves 3 times and we still had problems. We were SHOCKED when we first saw what the waste tank looked like after they had removed it. How can they possibly expect anything that is only 4-6 inches deep to let loose of waste, paper or anything else?!!! It just piles up at the entry to the tank. We were forced to use a port-a-potty for several weeks because of all the problems we had. We had an old Lance cabover with a REAL WASTE TANK - ie a big deep one - and put everything imaginable down there and never had a problem. So, the fool idiot who designed this mess should be required to spend at least 2 weeks living in an RV in freezing weather in Alaska! Only then would they possibly have any chance of maybe designing something that will work properly.

We hope to make the trip to Seward sometime in the next month or so and hope to be able to visit with you. Good luck with your Monty and we hope things stop being so "crappy" for you.

We love cold weather too!

Jim and Pam in Palmer
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