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Old 02-10-2019, 06:55 PM   #11
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I might be moving to B.C, so the weather won’t be nearly as cold in the winter. I’m really interested in the CrossFit now. Any recommendations for finding used models (2018/2017) in USA? More selection and better prices might lure me South �� I assume each state has different “go to” websites, such as Craigslist? eBay?
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Old 02-11-2019, 06:17 AM   #12
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I assume you're talking about B.C.'s "sunny" south? I spent seven years in the Cariboo District, 40 miles east of 150 Mile House, and the coldest it got during our time there was -45 F. Unfortunately a tree half gnawed through by beavers picked that exact time to fall across the power lines, and repairs took 6.5 hours. The school buses stop running when it drops to -20, but I don't remember if that was F or C. ps: the animal is caribou, the District is Cariboo.
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Old 02-11-2019, 07:51 PM   #13
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I might be moving to B.C, so the weather wont be nearly as cold in the winter. Im really interested in the CrossFit now. Any recommendations for finding used models (2018/2017) in USA? More selection and better prices might lure me South �� I assume each state has different go to websites, such as Craigslist? eBay?
You may want to check the RIV (Registrar of Imported vehicles) for how/whether you can import that sweet B deal you just saw online for $X. You may not be allowed to import it.

RIV
https://www.riv.ca/

Transport Canada.
Section 5.2 - Motorhomes Class B
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Old 02-12-2019, 01:21 PM   #14
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The poster's comment about using a Class B to make mad dashes from bad weather into good is spot on. The physics just don't work for making vans habitable in either extreme cold or extreme heat. The surface area to volume ratio is just wrong and there's not much that can be done about it.

There are exceptions. The bloggers FarOutRide have really maximized their winter off-gridding capacity, for instance. But they are a couple of young, fit Quebecois with uncommonly good endurance and guts of steel. And their van was purpose-built for their usage goal, not an off-the-lot consumer-grade rig.

I'm a reverse-snowbird, so my annual mad dashing consists of fleeing the deep south of coastal Texas so that I can enjoy August in Nova Scotia. Temperatures often exceed 100 degrees on my trek northward, and my husband and I have configured our van to minimize heat loading to the extent practicable as a result.
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Old 02-12-2019, 01:54 PM   #15
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The physics just don't work for making vans habitable in either extreme cold or extreme heat. The surface area to volume ratio is just wrong and there's not much that can be done about it.
You may be right about extreme heat, but many of us have successfully adapted our vans for (relatively) extreme cold. Perhaps you can't do it efficiently (although efficiency is relative). But a fuel-fired hydronic heating system such as the Espar D5 can very easily keep a van toasty and all systems operating, even with outdoor plumbing. ARV led the way by showing how to use extended glycol loops to protect plumbing and tanks. I have very successfully emulated this approach, as have others. It is a bit of work, but the trope that "winter camping in a B-van isn't practical" is demonstrably not correct.
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Old 02-12-2019, 02:13 PM   #16
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Context!! The OP used the terms "Coachman Crossfit" and "-30 [degrees] C" in the same short post. He also talked about looking on Craigslist and eBay - not exactly the top sources for climate-hardened rigs. Framed thusly, I suggest that the limits of physics are not a trope so much as a reality.

Of course, with customization and money money money, a lot can be accomplished to push those limits toward favorable territory (I gave the example of FarOutRide). But he wasn't signaling his intentions in that direction.

We know that new owners frequently overestimate the capacities of vans to meet their needs (witness the constant parade of potential buyers who assume that they can run roof air conditioner units indefinitely off their coach battery systems). I'd rather the OP get an accurate sense of what he's potentially up against.
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Old 02-12-2019, 02:42 PM   #17
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Context!! The OP used the terms "Coachman Crossfit" and "-30 [degrees] C" in the same short post. He also talked about looking on Craigslist and eBay - not exactly the top sources for climate-hardened rigs. Framed thusly, I suggest that the limits of physics are not a trope so much as a reality.

Of course, with customization and money money money, a lot can be accomplished to push those limits toward favorable territory (I gave the example of FarOutRide). But he wasn't signaling his intentions in that direction.

We know that new owners frequently overestimate the capacities of vans to meet their needs (witness the constant parade of potential buyers who assume that they can run roof air conditioner units indefinitely off their coach battery systems). I'd rather the OP get an accurate sense of what he's potentially up against.
Coachman does a better job of insulation than most in their Class B vans and with the Truma you can get plenty of heat output. Adding insulation covers on the windows and an insulating divider behind the cab will probably be enough to keep the cabin warm. Accept that you wont use the fresh water system and flush the toilet with RV antifreeze or use wag bags in the toilet and you can make it a pretty capable cold weather option. How cold? -30 deg C could be very doable...
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Old 02-12-2019, 03:41 PM   #18
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Often the question about winter RV camping comes from someone new to RVing. Yes, of course it can be done and is done by some by choice and others because no choice.

Up here, you can get below freezing temps in any season except summer so you get experience whether you want it or not.

The biggest single issue might be finding somewhere to empty the waste tanks both during and after the trip. Next issue might be fuel usage if staying in one place for more than a week. Battery capacity could also be an issue. In some RV's battery capacity would be the most limiting factor.

The proponents of winter camping could share some details on fuel usage per week and how they cope with emptying their waste tanks and how many battery Ah they use per day etc. That would give the folks who would like to try it an idea of what to expect.

I don't set out to use an RV when below freezing. It is just pretty much unavoidable up here. I recall using 4 to 5lbs of propane per day in a Class C at around 20F. Both my current RV's have around 400 Ah battery capacity so getting through one very cold night is not a concern. I can empty the tanks at home.

I don't hesitate to use the pink RV antifreeze to facilitate using the van in the 3 seasons that freezing can occur here. This year the pink stuff is in the fresh water tank and will be used only for flushing and making sure the P traps remain full and sealed when I start using the van for day trips come Spring. Last year I kept a jug of RV antifreeze nearby for flushing. My strategy or approach varies each year it depending on anticipated usage. The cheap pink stuff's main active ingredient is ethanol - that's also in the beer you drink in a lower concentration. Don't drink the pink stuff! Propylene glycol is probably in your toothpaste or hand cream. Over several weeks of day trips with temperatures going below freezing it's just easier to not have to empty the waste tanks in between outings and using the flush lever on the toilet is easier and better (no splash back), toilet lid closed etc..

In the Class A, I added a small tank just for RV antifreeze. I haven't had to use it yet but it's there and usable by turning a valve if when ever needed. The entire tank setup might have cost me $25 and there's maybe $15 or $20 of RV antifreeze in it. It would be invaluable if the ability to keep the tanks warm or the coach itself above freezing was lost at an inopportune time. There's a breaker bar and correct socket size to drain the water heater in the rig.

There are various way to cope with RV in below freezing temperatures. The more info and ideas out there the better.
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Old 02-12-2019, 07:03 PM   #19
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<snip>
The proponents of winter camping could share some details on fuel usage per week and how they cope with emptying their waste tanks and how many battery Ah they use per day etc. That would give the folks who would like to try it an idea of what to expect.
<snip>
I can comment a bit about this on our Roadtrek 09/10C190P; YMMV.
1) We hit some ice/snow/freezing weather on our first trip down south in early 2011, and did just fine. We kept the inside at about 70degF with the propane-fired furnace, and ran the fridge (3-way at that time) and water heater (propane only at that time). We were in campgrounds more than not, so that would have cut the fridge usage. My records only show us filling the tank once during the month long trip, and again after we got home. I find it funny that so many people/manuals insist that you drain your water heater in freezing weather. It is true that if the camper is parked and not heated, you should do this. But if you are using the camper and running the water heater, how is it going to freeze?
2) We also had a run of freezing weather in Oregon in early 2012 on another trip. My records show getting 2.8 gallons of propane after 3 days, and 3.6 gallons after another 4 days, so around a gallon of propane per day. Obviously in -30degC weather, this would be much more, but a better insulated van would lessen that somewhat.
3) BTW, the most propane we have ever been able to cram into the "10 gallon" tank was 7.3 gallons. Recently we had the tank out and bled it dry; the refill was just 7 gallons.
4) We have used the inside fresh water tank/system on all of our trips. It stays warm enough because the inside temps are kept warm enough. We use it to flush the toilet, although we add some of the pink antifreeze to the black (and gray) tanks now and then.
5) Never had a problem dumping our tanks at campgrounds, but it may have been above freezing when we did, so no real data.
6) More recently, we have added a lot of insulation, moved the indoor plumbing away from the walls, and are in the process of adding tank and plumbing heaters. All this should make it pretty freeze-proof well into sub-freezing temps.


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Old 02-12-2019, 08:16 PM   #20
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Your propane usage was about the same as what I observed. 1 gallon propane is approx 4.2lbs. We weren't keeping the larger Class C as warm though because we were out all day and into the evenings with relatives in the area.

The interactive map of Canadian campgrounds near the bottom of this link - https://www.canadream.com/special-of...er-rv-rentals/ - looks like a great resource.

Does anyone know of a similar winter camping map for the US Northeast?
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