Sunday, April 30, 2017

Gary Sanford Fuse Mods

During the Get Together, we saw many mods and customizations.   It is amazing the talent that many Fuse owners have.

Gary Sanford was nice enough to have created a list of his mods and provided it to those at the event.  He was nice enough to let me re-publish the list so everyone can see.

Please reply in the Facebook group so Gary can answer.  I would not come close to being able to answer.

Sanfords’ Fuse Upgrades, Mods and Wish List: 2016-2017
2017.0 Winnebago Fuse 23T

  • Added shelf over bathroom sink ***May 2016***
  • Dividers for silverware & galley utensils drawers *** May 2016***
  • Broom clip on entry handle *** May 2016***
  • “Silenced” bathroom fan *** May 2016***
  • Honeywell RTH111B Thermostat (furnace) *** May 2016***
  • Hatchlift gas spring for curb side hatch door *** May 2016***
  • Vertical wood dowel plate dividers in side cabinet ***May 2016*** 
  • Insulated water heater compartment ***May 2016***
  • Hardwood stovetop cover ***May 2016***
  • Sewer hose carrier mounted on rear ladder *May 2016***
  • Bug screens for water heater & furnace *** June 2016***
  • Screening in fridge vent panel *** June 2016***
  • Road atlas storage shelves added between cab and coach *** June 2016*** 
  • China toilet *** June 2016***
  • Added wall switch for bathroom fan *** June 2016***
  • Cupboard Corrals for medicine cabinet *** June 2016***
  • Flow-rite Qwik-Fill Battery Watering System *** June 2016***
  • “Crash bar” for screen door *** June 2016***
  • Spacer for 2-piece mattress *** June 2016***
  • Hughes Autoformer ***July 2016***
  • Awning for driver-side coach window ***July 2016***
  • Endless Breeze fan in bedroom (replaced TV) ***July 2016***
  • RV Superbag & sheets ***July 2016***
  • Pegboard inside curb side storage area ***July 2016***
  • Custom 1⁄2-length galley sink cover ***July 2016***
  • Sewer valve cap with handle ***Aug 2016***
  • LevelMate Pro (iPhone leveling system ***Aug 2016***
  • Ford side window rain deflectors ***Oct 2016***
  • Atwood 120° thermostat for water heater ***Oct 2016***
  • License plate lights replaced with LEDs ***Oct 2016***
  • Pacific Duallies rear valve stem extensions *** Nov 2016***
  • Drawer under dinette seat ***NOV 2016***
  • Installed Progressive Industries HW30C surge suppressor & monitor panel ***Mar 2017***
  • Hawkshead TPMS ***Apr 2017***
  • Grab handles in shower ***Apr 2017***


  • 3-way winterizing valve near water pump 360 Siphon Roof Vents (2)
  • EternaBond tape over fore and aft roof joints Water pump switch under galley sink WasteMaster Sewer Hose System
  • HWH Leveling System 

Gary Sanford's Winnebago Fuse
Gary Sanford's Fuse - Additional Awning

Gary Sanford Mod 1
Gary Sanford's Fuse - Exterior Water 

Gary Sanford Sewer Hose holder
Gary Sanford's Fuse - Sewer Hose Holder

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Friday at the Get Together

We had a great night talking all about Fuses the night before.  We had such a good time we stayed up way past our bed time.

Fuses in the campground

We were originally going to do some exploring in the area.  We were so convinced that we did not put out the slide.   The Beagle Bus looked kind of funny sitting there in line, everyone with their slides out but us.  On this morning, I let Sonya sleep in. Not that it mattered,  I was having a good time talking with all the fusers that were at the campground.

We sat there talking and watching people arrive.  Every time a Fuse rolled up, the group gravitated to their site to welcome them.    I think we started Friday morning with 11 Fuses and by the end of the day we had 19 rolling up right as the pot luck was starting.

The only event on Friday was a pot luck that started at 5:00PM.  And what a pot luck it was.  I think that there was enough food to feed an army.   Brats, brisket, sausages, and BBQ.   Salad, dips, curds and  chips.   And lets not forget the pecan pies and other desserts.

Winnebago Fuse Pot Luck

Winnebago Fuse Pot LuckWinnebago Fuse Pot Luck

It seemed like the other thing that was in abundance was wine, bourbon and moonshine.  And a good thing we had that because everyone got a juice glass to commemorate our event.  The glass was good for orange juice, apple juice, grape juice, corn juice, fermented or not.

Winnebago Fuse Wine GlassWinnebago Fuse Pot Luck

I was amazed at our crowd.  Everyone seemed like long lost relatives.  Just like a family reunion.  Our new Fuse family reunion.

Fuse get together event Fuse get together event
Fuse get together eventFuse get together event

Fuse get together event

We ate and had a great time.  But then the rain came.  And a rain it was.  Huge thunder showers through the night, but everyone was comfortable in their Fuses.  Me, I could not calm down since it was like when I was a child at Christmas, waiting for our speakers in the morning.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Get Together Question: Ford Commercial Vehicle Center

Help Locating Ford Dealers to Work on Your RV

Ford has recently introduced a program where Ford Dealers that specialize in large vehicles such as the Transit can become a "Ford Commercial Vehicle Center".  They should have everything necessary and not have any issues with servicing our vehicles.

The link to the Ford site is at:  https://fordcommercialvehiclecenter. com/findDealer/init

Any Ford dealer can work on the Transit portion of your Winnebago Fuse, although some may be hesitant because they do not have all of the heavy duty lifting equipment, tall enough bays or other items necessary to work on large vehicles like RVs and commercial vehicles.

Get Together Question - Fuel Additives ?

During the Q&A with Ford, Tom W. showed the group the Motorcraft diesel additive he was using.  He said he was only using it every 5th tank or so.   He provided this followup to the discussion:

The Motorcraft fuel additive that I showed the group is one of two potential additives to use.  The one I had was an anti-gel additive for cold weather.  The other is a cetane performance booster.  Both were developed and recommended by Ford in lieu of any aftermarket product.  Here's a short video clip from Ford created when they released the new packaging:

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Get Together Question - Is There a New Bike Rack ?

Question:  Has the Fiamma Bike Rack been replaced on the Fuse with something newer?

Answer:  Here is a drawing of the Summit bike rack we currently offer on the Fuse.  It is pretty similar in looks and function to the Fiamma that was initially offered. 

Friday, April 21, 2017

Dinner/Lunch - Publix Microwave Meals

The last two meals we have had in the Fuse have been seriously good eats.   On our way to the Get Together we stopped at Publix to get our groceries.  Publix for those not in the SouthEast is a regional grocery store like Kroger.

I got sandwich stuff, drinks and enough stuff for two dinner meals. We did not need more since we had the pot luck and the pizza party to look forward to for the rest of the dinners.  Don't say anything about being well  balanced meal or anything.  First, this is vacation.  Second, I don't like green stuff.   But ignoring that, this was some seriously good eating.

Key was that I wanted something that was quick, easy and could be done in the microwave.  To be honest I was not sure what we would be doing at the party so I wanted flexibility.   I hit those goals and we were going to eat something better than sandwiches.

The first meal we had was the Publix Meatloaf.  I paired this with some microwave mash potatoes.  Cooked it at power level 5 in the microwave for 11 minutes and it came out nice and hot.  I paired it with some microwave mash potatoes.  4-5 minutes in the microwave for those and we were ready for a piping hot dinner.

Publix Meatloaf

This meatloaf was very yummy.  It was in a brown gravy not a tomato gravy.   It was enough for Sonya, Lily and myself to have a good portion with the mash potatoes and have enough for a second half helping.   It did not taste too salty which is something I tend to be more sensitive to lately.  The cost was $6.99 in the deli section.

Our second Publix meal was meant to be our dinner on Thursday, but it turned into lunch on Friday.  We got so busy talking to all of our old/new (what is a Facebook friend when you meet them in person for the first time) friends that when we finally gave up for the night we had forgotten to eat.

This meal was Publix Beef Tips and Uncle Ben's Microwave rice.   This was also pretty good and made a great meal.   Not quite as yummy as the meat loaf, but not bad never the less.   This took 6 minutes at 50% power in the microwave and then it was nice and steaming.   Accompanying this was some Uncle Ben's Microwave Rice - Roast Chicken Flavored.  This was 90 seconds in the microwave at full power and it was ready to go.

Publix Beef Tips

It made a good meal as well.   The beef tips on top of the rice was a great pairing.  There was enough  for everyone without any leftovers.  It had plenty of extra gravy to add to Lily's dog food tonight so everyone was happy.  This I thought was a little more salty than the meatloaf.  Still very good and I am probably the only one that would notice.  Oh, and the price was $7.99

And just to be healthy, we had a healthy desert -Nutter Butter Peanut Butter Cookies.   Peanut butter counts for healthy, right?

A question I was asked at the Get Together.  Do you eat on paper plates or on real dishes?   We eat on both depending on what the meal is.  With sandwiches we generally eat on paper towels.  With the meals above we used paper plates with real flatware (we have some disposable plastic stuff we have picked up at fast food places).  But we have 4 place settings of corning ware that we use as the need arises.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Traveling up to the smokies - Days 1 and 2

Lilly the beagle being a  co-pilot

We left Tallahassee around lunch on day 1 and we had a reservation just outside of Athens, Ga.  On this trip we are going to avoid Atlanta at all costs.  The highway bridge falling down in downtown Atlanta can only add to the normally nerve racking experience.   So our path is as follows:

Take US-319 from Tallahassee to Tifton.  There get on I-75 through rural Georgia.  The Georgia state highways are great.  Generally designed with farm to market operations in mind so they are nice and wide for agricultural needs.   Once on I-75 we ran up to Macon and then got on 129 heading up towards Athens, Ga.   Our stop was a little before that in a small town called Bishop.

South Ga Pecan TreesSouth Ga Farm Land

We stayed at the Pine Lake Campground.   A really nice place.   Everything was very clean.  The bathrooms were in the process of being remodeled and the one I used was spotless.

Pine Lake CampgroundPine Lake Campground

They had a beautiful pair of lakes and it was nice to walk around.  We stayed in spot #1.  It was level and easy to pull through.  A really pretty place and we would stay again.

We got up the next morning and headed for the Get Together.

We filled up for the remainder of the trip to Cosby, TN.    We got 17.5mpg for this half of the trip.   Mostly running 55-65 on the nice GA roads.  We found a couple of real nice rest stops along the way and several really pretty little towns.  If the computer is to be believed, 17.2 mpg for the part through the mountains.

Mountain RoadsMountain Rest Stop

Smokie MountainsSmokie Mountains

We  checked in and started to meet all of the folks that beat us here.   First time I have seen this many Fuses in one place including a dealers lot.   And we have even more coming tomorrow.

2017 Spring Fuse Rally - Early Birds2017 Spring Fuse Rally - Early Birds

By the end of the day, 11 Fuses were here.   We should have another 6 or so coming in tomorrow. We put a lot of faces with names and talked about Fuses way past Lily's bedtime.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Getting Ready for a Trip

A Wet Winnebago Fuse

It's several days from our next trip in the Fuse and we need to get everything ready to go.  Like most people with RVs we keep most things we will need in the Fuse all of the time.  For us, with the exception of food we can get in our motorhome and go somewhere overnight with what we keep in there and not miss much.

We do not keep any food in the Fuse.  We don't want any ants or other critters.  We usually leave one change of clothes, so if we go out for the day we can change if we get messy.

So to start this trip, we are going to be gone 5 days and 4 nights.   This is the spring and we are heading north so beachwear is not on the list.  A mixture is what we are going to pack.

The weekend before, we took care of some general house keeping.  We did a good clean and wipe down of everything.  Since the Fuse is so small it only takes 10 minutes or so.  We broke out the swifter with wet pads for the floor and the spray cleaner and some towels for everything else.

I generally store the Fuse with a full tank of diesel.  Water is the biggest enemy of diesel fuel and leaving the tank half full when the weather is constantly going hot and cold during the spring is not a good idea.   I had driven the Fuse several times in the last several weeks and put 50-60 miles on the odometer.

The propane level was down to 2/3s so I wanted to top that off before our trip as well.  So Saturday afternoon we took a ride, got the propane filled (less than 2 gallons) and topped off the fuel tank.  And we got some Icees as a treat.

The Fuse now would sit for a couple of days.  I plugged it into the house so we can have some 110v power as necessary, but we let it sit.   The only other thing is to put the battery for the e-bike on the charger.  Just so we don't have to worry about it later.

Winnebago Fuse on Shore Power

The evening before we leave it is time to turn on the refrigerator.  The refrigerator in the Fuse is an absorption type and takes several hours to cool down.  If we let it cool down overnight it is perfect in the morning.

We also bring our clothes out and anything else that is special for the trip.    Then we get some sleep.

Winnebago Fuse Full Drawer

The morning of the trip we finish the packing.

We bring out our food almost last.  The cold stuff goes in the refrigerator along with a couple gallons of drinking water.  Some sodas, meat, milk and our little box of condiments we pick up along the way.  Granola bars, cookies, k-cups and the other cupboard stuff goes in some containers above the sofa.  The bread and chips above the sink and we are done.

Winnebago Fuse Refrigerator

Winnebago Fuse CabinetWinnebago Fuse cabinet over couch

We have a Tupperware container we fill with ice from the house and put that in the freezer.  It will store the ice we make while on the road as well.

Winnebago Fuse Freezer

Next step is put the e-bike on the rack.  Make sure it is well secured and the safety strap is on.

Here I will add water if necessary.  I aways use a filter to make sure we have the best water possible.  I only fill it to 1/3-1/2.  We are not boon docking, so no need to carry the extra water weight.

Now we are almost ready to get underway.  I unplug from the house, coil up the extension cord and stow it.  I walk around the Fuse and check all of the compartments to make sure they are secured and  locked.  I check the tires and make sure everything looks right.   We are almost ready.

The last step is to make sure everything is secured inside.  All of the blinds are up so there is no banging.  Once everything is secured it is time to go.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Cleaning the Maxxair Fan

Maxxair Fan

The Maxxair fan in the Winnebago Fuse is great. Super quiet and moves a lot of air. It will run as a fan or as a ventilator.  You choose using a button on the control panel.  It even has a thermostat to turn on and off the fan as needed.

I was sitting in the Fuse the other day and I noticed a noise coming from the Maxxair fan.  Not a bad noise, but something.  The fan has almost been silent from the day we got the Fuse, so something was up.   I looked and did not see anything.  I pushed the button to put it into fan mode and the noise went away. I did not give much thought to the issue and went about my business.

Well, the next day I went into the Fuse the noise was back. I looked at the fan and there I saw it.  A leaf and a wasp had gotten into the fan, and were touching the blades.  That was what was causing the chattering.

So, I guess it was time to clean the fan.  It was very easy.  Before I did anything I wanted to make sure the wasp was dead, I did not want to get stung.  He was and by all appearances he had been for a while.

The first step in this procedure was to turn off the fan.  I did this by pressing the on/off button.

Maxxair Fan - Switch

This brought down the vent cover so nothing else could get in from the outside.   We wanted no more leafs and no more bugs.

Now came the real job. Getting the screen off.  This was rather simple after I looked at it.  The latches just twist out of the way.  They seem to be spring loaded and twisting all 4 of them 180 degrees allowed the screen to come out.

Maxxair Fan - Screen tabsMaxxair Fan - Screen removal

I dumped the leaf and the wasp out the door, and put the screen back in.   Now the fan was silent again.

Maxxair Fan - ScreenDead wasp

Total time - 3 minutes.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Ford Frontline Shows off the Fuse

This was published in “Ford Frontline Magazine” which is distributed to Ford dealerships throughout the U.S.

Ford Frontline Magazine Transit RV article ©Ford Motor Company
©Ford Motor Company

Monday, April 10, 2017

Successful Failure - A Fix to the Sewer Hose Compartment

I am going to post another modification from Richard Kozloski who has a 2017 Winnebago Fuse and is a member of the Facebook group.   He has decided to fix the sewer host storage problem and he is being nice enough to share his modification.  Please comment in the Facebook Winnebago Owners Group so Richard can respond to everyone directly:

I decided to “fix” the sewer hose comparement on my 23T. The problem being that the diameter of the pipe they installed and the diameter of the hole you were supposed to put the sewer hose through were just barely big enough to get a hose in but you couldn’t have any connectors on it. (Great design Winnebago, do you even check these things.)

I took measurements of the worse case fitting out of my bag of parts and found it wa s little over 41⁄4” in diameter.

I opened the door on the sewer compartment on the RV and measured the maximum inner size. That turned out to be ~5”. Since I watch a lot of This Old House I knew that there was a plastic fence post that was approximately 4” in diameter. So off to Lowes web site. The web site listed a 4” and a 5” plastic post but gave no inside dimensions. Off to the store with the sewer hose end in tow.

Fence post sewer

When I finally found someone that knew what I was talking about and where they were (Garden department outside) we pulled one post each and I measured them. The 4” was ~4 inches outside diameter and ~37⁄8 inside. Sewer connection wouldn’t go inside it. However, the 5” post measured ~5” outside and ~47⁄8” inside and the connector swam in it.

Brave soul that I am I purchased one 8’ section and the smallest (shortest) top cap I could find.

When I got home I cut a piece about 2” long off the post and took it out to the RV to do some checking. When I placed this piece in the opening it fit the opening perfectly. (Well close enough for government work.) I then crawled under the RV and used this piece as a gauge between the wall of the storage compartment and the braces for the generator. (My Fuse is a 23T. You need to make these checks on a 23A.) It would be a tight fit but it would make it OK.


Sewer hose storage - before

Test Fit

sewer host storage - test fit

This is going to be a snug fit

sewer host storage - snug fit

I drilled holes in the four corners and then cut the remaining out being careful not to break the door latch area and removed to old “pipe”

sewer hose storage - removedsewer host storage - old pipe

I cut a section of the5” post 25 inches long and gently tapped it in place with a section of 2x4 and a hammer. (Gently taped ...) It was a tight fit between the compartment and the generator braces but it shouldn’t fall out on its own.

sewer hose storage - testing

You can see how much space there is with this larger storage “pipe”.

sewer hose storage - Solved with hose inside

Success! Kinda. Although there is now plenty of room for any connector you would want you are limited to a max length collapsed of 24” if you want to close the door. Had to cut ~1 foot off my hose to get it in without damaging the door latch. At least that’s one length of hose out of the storage compartment.

If I had it to do again I would go with my second option which was to have a sheet metal box bent to fit the space between the storage compartment and the generator. You still have to cut the opening larger but you would be able to store an full length hose bent over and maybe even two. I still have 5ft of the 5” post free to a good home if someone wants to do this mod on their RV. Just stop in anytime and I’ll help you. It only takes about 1 hour.

A PDF of the this mod is located here.