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Old 05-06-2012, 07:21 PM   #1
StanMT
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New to us Cougar 278RKS

Just found this forum and signed up. We recently became owners of a 2008 Cougar 278RKS, upgraded from a 1988 Kit Road Ranger -- quite a difference.
Towing with a 1995 F350 Crew Cab long bed with the 7.3 PowerStroke.

Have had it out for 1 dry-camp weekend so far, with quite a number of issues (not particularly Keystone related -- more dealer/service related). Most items are now fixed and I think we are really going to enjoy this new camper.

Just finished installing 2 Interstate 6-volt batteries this evening and will be spending some time this evening researching information on the 278RKS charging system to ensure there are no issues with this setup before hooking up to 120v.

Just sayin' howdy here, off to start researching information for a while.
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Old 05-06-2012, 07:24 PM   #2
Festus2
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StanMT -
Hello and welcome to the forum. We have the identical unit to you and so far we have been extremely pleased with it. Since we bought it new, there have been no major issues - several small items that were easily taken care of without having to take it back to the dealer. I think you will like it. Watch your dishes in the rear kitchen cabinets!
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Old 05-06-2012, 07:32 PM   #3
StanMT
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StanMT -
Hello and welcome to the forum. We have the identical unit to you and so far we have been extremely pleased with it. Since we bought it new, there have been no major issues - several small items that were easily taken care of without having to take it back to the dealer. I think you will like it. Watch your dishes in the rear kitchen cabinets!
Festus2,
Thanks for the welcome! I'm sure we will enjoy the camper also. What is the issue with the dishes in the rear cabinets?

Stan
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Old 05-06-2012, 07:41 PM   #4
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Because of the "bouncing" at the rear of the 5th wheel coupled with the location of the kitchen cabinets at the rear, the contents of the cupboards (dishes, eg.) are more prone to bouncing and breakage. We stuff a pillow in the cabinet that houses our dishes and make sure that they are placed on a non-slip surface (Scoot Guard or something similar). Also make sure that the rear cabinet doors are secure and will not "fly open" when travelling.
We did have one "accident" and found that one of the cupboard doors had opened and we ended up with a mess of broken dishes scattered over the floor. Since then, the precautions we have taken have paid off and no more "whoops"!
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Old 05-06-2012, 07:52 PM   #5
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Thanks much for the tips on the rear cabinets. Non-skid material is already in place (first thing the wife did ), the pillow trick sounds like an excellent idea.

Stan
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Old 05-07-2012, 04:54 PM   #6
StanMT
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So far, dual 6-volt batteries are installed and functioning. Black tank that was plugged up when we got the camper has been unplugged. Couple more issues and we are all set to head out camping again, life is good.
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Old 05-09-2012, 10:49 AM   #7
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Welcome! I am a newbie as well but have over 30 years of camping experience starting out with tents, then pop-ups, then a few misc travel trailers, then a Cougar 5th wheel & now a Retreat Park Model... so we have some background & may be of some help to someone, someday??
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Old 05-09-2012, 04:28 PM   #8
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Welcome! I am a newbie as well but have over 30 years of camping experience starting out with tents, then pop-ups, then a few misc travel trailers, then a Cougar 5th wheel & now a Retreat Park Model... so we have some background & may be of some help to someone, someday??
Thanks jkghdrider, I do have a question that relates to unplugging the black tank. The wife found some information on the internet that provided a suggestion of hooking up the drain hose and filling it with water (holding it as high as possible), then simultaneously lowering the drain hose and opening the black tank.

It took 6 attempts at filling the hose and then draining, but the blockage finally came loose, apparently there is still some sludge left in the tank as there are still 2 lights on the gauge that light up. We are hoping that a good dose of 'Pure Power' or 2 will break the rest loose.

Is there any other method of checking the contents of the black tank other than spending the money to buy a digital inspection camera? Due to the bends in the commode drain, there is no other method that I can think of to view the contents of the tank itself.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

Stan
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Old 05-09-2012, 05:22 PM   #9
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Stan, Your tank may be empty. None of the tank sensors are accurate especially the black tank. There are many home brew methods of cleaning sensors including bags of ice cubes or Calgon and Dawn ... each with 5 gal. of water just before leaving home for a trip. The theory is that the sloshing will clean the walls of the tank. I personally use the Calgon and Dawn method on the return from the last trip of the season ..... not sure if it helps, but it can't hurt. This allows me to save the ice for cocktails. Hope this helps, Hank
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Old 05-09-2012, 05:59 PM   #10
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Hank,
Thanks much for the info, will look up the ice cubes and Calgon/Dawn methods and probably will try both. Just figured that with an inspection camera I would have 'proof positive' as to the state of the black tank.
Virtually all of our camping is at remote sites, so knowing the state of the black tank is essential.
Thanks again,
Stan
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Old 05-09-2012, 06:08 PM   #11
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Another pc of helpful advice in case you don't already know is to always leave the gates closed when camper is in use.. When ready to drain the tanks, open the black tank, once empty or close to empty, open the gray tanks which in turn should let some water into the black tank to help rinse.. Never leave the black tank open when hooked to sewer as the liquids will flow but the solids may hang up in the tank causing problems. As hankpage has stated, the sensors are not always accurate & tend to be misleading. Good luck!!
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Old 05-08-2013, 05:27 PM   #12
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Thanks for all the info provided. Black tank issues have been resolved (finally did get the tank completely empty) and things have been great with the camper for the last half dozen trips.

Did do an upgrade recently, found a new TV that just begged to come home with us -- who were we to say no......

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Old 07-20-2013, 03:18 PM   #13
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Thanks much for the tips on the rear cabinets. Non-skid material is already in place (first thing the wife did ), the pillow trick sounds like an excellent idea.

Stan
With our 279RKS, rear kitchen dish issues never crossed my mind I did line the shelves with non-skid material, and cut pieces of the same to layer between dishes of different sizes so they don't do too much scooting around. I always make sure the cupboards are tightly packed and most of our dinnerware is Corelle. I always check the door latches when securing for towing. So far, no mishaps.

Thanks for the great pillow trick. I am going to add that to my routine. This will kill two birds - prevent spilling dishes and justify the throw pillows I have on the sofa - DH thinks they are silly

BTW: We love our RKS!
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Old 07-20-2013, 03:34 PM   #14
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The Huffs -
When your Corelle dish(es) breaks and falls on the floor, you will spend a very long time picking up and vacuuming thousands of Corelle pieces of dinnerware. I counted and there are that many!

Glad to see that you've taken precautions with your dishes and the rear kitchen. It's not so much the slipping of them as the bouncing that is the major problem.

The pillows will help - we've used them not only in the cupboard but also in the microwave. Unless your DH has picked up Corelle fragments, he shouldn't think it's a funny idea! Oh yes, any leftover pillows are used on our bed and couch.
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Old 07-20-2013, 03:55 PM   #15
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The Huffs -
When your Corelle dish(es) breaks and falls on the floor, you will spend a very long time picking up and vacuuming thousands of Corelle pieces of dinnerware. I counted and there are that many!

Glad to see that you've taken precautions with your dishes and the rear kitchen. It's not so much the slipping of them as the bouncing that is the major problem.

The pillows will help - we've used them not only in the cupboard but also in the microwave. Unless your DH has picked up Corelle fragments, he shouldn't think it's a funny idea! Oh yes, any leftover pillows are used on our bed and couch.
Should I pack them in ZipLoc bags? Seriously! So if they do break, the shards will be in the bag.
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Susan A (retired school district business manager)
Bridge, OR
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2013 F-350 Super Duty Powerstroke 4WD LB CC

https://i1365.photobucket.com/albums/...ps78607eca.jpg
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Old 07-20-2013, 04:02 PM   #16
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Should I pack them in ZipLoc bags? Seriously! So if they do break, the shards will be in the bag.
Mmmmmmm --- only if you have some sort of compulsive disorder -- seriously!
Chances are with the precautions you have taken, you will be spared the agony of picking up the pieces.
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Old 07-20-2013, 07:09 PM   #17
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Mmmmmmm --- only if you have some sort of compulsive disorder -- seriously!
Chances are with the precautions you have taken, you will be spared the agony of picking up the pieces.
My friends say I am sometimes a bit "Monkish"
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Susan A (retired school district business manager)
Bridge, OR
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https://i1365.photobucket.com/albums/...ps78607eca.jpg
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