There comes a time in every travellers life when they realize they’ve forgotten something important. No matter how hard you plan, or how many lists you make, it appears to be the universal law of travelhood that at some point you’ll slap your hand against your forehead, followed by some kind of lamenting sound, possibly a bit of foul language, the 4 stages of grief and then onto “ok, what do we do now?”.

So it was for us in Quartzite, AZ.

We had driven several miles into the “boonies”, enjoyed an afternoon in the wilderness, slept the deeply sound sleep of those who know that all is right with the world and then gotten ready to take the car into town.

That’s when it happened. You see, we tow our car behind our RV (like many do) which involves hooking up the car to a tow-bar, attaching cables that transfer the brakes to the back and leaving the key half-turned in the ignition so that the wheels are loose and can move while we drive.  Usually we unhook as soon as we get to a RV park, but out here in the wilderness it hardly seemed necessary until we needed the car. So, we had happily left the car hooked-up with the key in the ignition, which was equally happy to slowly drain the batteries overnight leaving us with a completely dead car, and the dead obvious question “honey, we bought jumper cables, right?”.
Which, in matter of fact, we hadn’t.

Now, all turned out fine in the end. Paul, being the strapping man he is, peddled the bicycle cross-country into town, got the cables and speeded back. We had ourselves a good half-hour of weight-pushing exercises getting the car rolled over next to the RV and then jump-started off the 650 amp engine batteries on the beast (for those not in the know, 650 amp is rather large and could easily jump-start a full-grown truck, so no worries there).

Which, brings me to the topic of the RV toolbox. Here’s a list of things we advise you bring should you be silly enough to start the trip without a list (or even with one, given what you might forget):

  • Jumper Cables – yes, seems bleeding obvious now
  • Assortment of tools (hammer, drill, wrenches, screwdrivers, nails, screws, measuring tape etc.)  – a plastic toolbox will house everything just fine.
  • Utility Gloves – useful for when you’re dealing w/ the black-tank and all kinds of other projects.
  • Camping axe – particularly helpful for opening coconuts, although I’m sure we’ll find more uses for it as time goes by
  • Wood & metal saws – good for home projects and lots more
  • Clamps - for use with saws and home projects on the road
  • Trowel – most usefull indeed…see yesterday’s post if in doubt
  • Bag of extra fuses – for when one of the fuses dies in your massive RV panel
  • Power-testing light - if something ain’t working in the RV this handy little tool will tell you if power is getting there
  • Grease & lube - all things move in the RV and they all get dry at some point so you’ll need an assortment of useful greases. We’ve got WD40, silicone lube, trailer-hitch grease and a few more which Paul has hidden around the place
  • Multi-Stage Ladder – the RV is BIG and having a ladder is key for all kinds of projects. We highly recommend the Werner 13-foot collapsible Ladder. It’s the exact same design (as far as I can tell) as the Little Giant but for a lot less.

I’m sure we’ll think of more as time goes by.

Jumpstarting the car in Quartzite

A selection of tools & lubes

The awesome Werner ladder

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3 Responses to The RV Toolbox…or what not to forget

  1. Linda says:

    Hubby is now hooked on your blog. This is his daily fun waiting to hear what next adventures await you :-)

  2. […] 4/ The tool you most critically need is the one you forgot to bring. […]

  3. […] experience , including our most wonderful loo escapades, albeit with 2 years more on the road and a far better toolbox. And to top it all off we’re part of the phenomenon, baby! Paul exchanges books at the free […]

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