Well, she’s finally here. We picked up “Minerva”, our new SMB, last Thursday in Huntington. I have a handful of pictures here though I’m realizing now they are almost all of the exterior. Will have to take some interior pictures to show later…
The pick-up process went very smoothly. They took more than enough time to show me all the systems. My partner video’d the whole process while I paid attention. Then we headed off to a late lunch while they did some final adjustments.
One unique solution they had to show me at the last minute was what to do when the hoop step wouldn’t fit on the driver’s side due to the Danhard a/c’s condenser location under the van. They shortened a black running board to fit on that side instead. I was fine with it. In fact, it’s easier to use than the hoop step. (though I still like the look of the hoop steps on the passenger side.)
The key project they had to wait until that day to complete was finding a means of installing our dog car seats on the rear mattress so that they wouldn’t take up ‘human’ space on the sofa. This was a big deal to us since we love traveling with our dogs but need the 4 of them contained and out of our way when driving.
The dogs are also why we requested 2 oscillating fans instead of just one. Plus, they made it essential to get the Danhard a/c. Gotta say, the a/c worked REALLY well. Was surprised how well it cooled in the campgrounds in Indiana…
… and Cook Forest, PA as we made our way back to New York. (We even got cold in the middle of the night.)
Also, FWIW, the dash a/c worked great as well. We never felt the need to turn the Danhard on while driving.
If you look under the mattress here you can see the propane furnace vents near the door and the danhard intake vents further in partially obscured to the left. Doesn't leave a ton of room for storage but we're intending to get a stowaway II wheeless trailer.
I had expected the Quigley 4x4 to be a bit shorter than the SMB 4x4 we’d looked at when ‘shopping around.’ But, it is still quite tall. We ended up buying a step stool the second day just to try to avoid ‘face planting’ on our way out of the new van.
One great moment occurred when we were finally done and they were closing shop. Jim had taken our picture in front of the van. Then I asked my partner to close the door to the pantry cabinet that hangs on the side door. CRASH…no more pantry door. (that’s why we don’t force things.) Jim just said to come back by the next morning and they’d fix it up. Which they did in very short order and we were on our way.
My only complaint – the trip was WAY too short. I am looking longingly at my rig every day when I drive off to work this week. I’d much rather be in there than commuting into Manhattan. (but, gotta earn my monthly payments)