A Year Later and Our Roadtrek Agile has Evolved from a RV to a Second Home.

It’s all about the accessories!  Yup, we’ve had our Roadtrek Agile “Charley” for a just about a year now, and it really has passed our expectations.  Meet Charley, our Roadtrek AgileWe wanted a comfortable, easy to maneuver “home away from home” for our photographic adventures, and Charley has come through with flying colors.  That doesn’t mean, however, that the motorhome was 100% ready to go when we brought it home.  We’ve put a lot of time and effort sourcing some thoughtful purchases and integrating some useful, but very modest, modifications.

I thought I’d devote this blog post to some of the things we’ve added to Charley that make life on the road a little bit easier.  If you’re looking for a story on photography, I’m sorry but this time it’s all about the motorhome.

We had two objectives with anything we purchased for our Roadtrek Agile.  It had to be as compact as possible, without losing any functionality.  And, if it was visible, it had to be at least as good looking as the standard Roadtrek décor.  And given Charley’s cherry and granite-based interior that can be a pretty high standard to meet.

Roadtrek Cherry Paper Towel Holder Modification-1The very first thing we saw when we opened the sliding door on our little motorhome was, unfortunately, a white plastic paper towel holder.   So, the first thing I did was source an inexpensive cherry towel holder.  It was actually a bit harder to find than I thought it would be, but once I installed it, I was glad I put in the effort.  It’s funny how a little thing like a paper towel holder can bug the heck out of you, isn’t it?  I found this one at Smith’s Fine Wood Products.

Just a note – I’m including the links for the items that I’ve found on-line.  I’m not plugging these products, nor am I making any commission on them.  I just thought I could save you some time if you decide you want any of them yourselves.

After a couple of trips in our Class B, I discovered it was missing a decent sized towel holder.  And seeing that we’re the kind of RVer’s who seldom stay in one place, we couldn’t rely on having an outside laundry line.  I was so pleased to find D. Lawless Hardware.  They carry a line of incredibly inexpensive door pulls and rods, including one that is long enough for a couple of full-sized towels.  And it perfectly matched the small towel holder on the bathroom door. New Roadtrek Towel Rack-1 I only had to figure out where in the heck to put it.  After a lot of deliberation, I put it under the cabinet, by the rear driver’s side window.  It doesn’t block my view when I’m driving, and the sunlight coming through the windows makes short work of a damp towel.

I found the driver’s seat in our RT to be pretty darn comfortable for long drives, but Rochelle isn’t as tall as I am, and her feet had a bit of a hard time finding the floor.  Adjusting the seat all the way down didn’t do the job, so we had to raise the floor.  All that involved was folding up a couple of camp blankets in plastic, zippered bags and putting them under the carpet.  Bonus, we now have two extra blankets for sleeping, or even picnicking. Roadtrek Neck Pillow Modification-1

I found the only thing that I felt was missing in the seats was a bit more support for my neck.  And that was easily corrected with some nice neck pillows.  The ones I found match the saddle-colored seats in our Agile perfectly.  These neck pillows and lots more are available at Amazon.

There isn’t a lot of room to carry a big tool kit in Charley, but I was able to combine a lot of my most used tools by getting a Leatherman SurgeLeatherman and Flashlights-1 It’s one of the biggest Leatherman multi-tools, so I doubt if I would carry it in my pocket or on a belt.  But it’s just right to keep in the motorhome.  I carry it and a few other small tools as well as some tape and a couple of bungee cords in the passenger door compartment.  That’s also where I keep my mosquito screens for the front windows.

It’s always a good idea to carry a flashlight or two.  I came across some LED-based flashlights that are super bright and have both a hook and a magnet so you can use them in a just about any environment.  They’re small enough to fit in your pocket, or glove compartment, and they’re very inexpensive

We purchased the standard kitchen items for Charley, but there a couple of things that really make my happy.  Collaspable Bowls-1The collapsible bowl and colander we found from Squish are big and they look great.  But the main attraction is they fold down to practically nothing.  And the next items I found are just plain cool.  Well, they’re actually more cold than cool.  That’s because they are ice trays.  Not just any ice trays, but nice silicone ones that perfectly fit in the Roadtreks mini-freezer.  I found mine at one of the kitchen stores you’ll find at any outlet mall. And to make that ice last as long as possible, I combine cheap Rubbermade drink bottles with some neoprene bottle insulators I found in the Walmart sporting goods department. Ice Trays and Bottle Coolers-1 The combination keeps your drink cold and your ice frozen for hours.

Of course, if a hot beverage is more your style, you might like these little Starbucks Via instant coffee packs.  No need for a coffee maker, and there are no coffee grounds to throw away. Instant Starbucks Via Coffee-1 It’s the best instant coffee I’ve ever had but it can be a bit expensive.  However, you can buy it in bulk from Amazon, and some supermarkets (Safeway in California) are coming out with their own brands that taste just as good, but are a bit less expensive.

Finally, I would never forgive myself if I let Charley get electrocuted by hooking him up to a bad power outlet. RV Surge Protector and Power Adapters-1 I always use a Progressive Industries surge protector whenever I hook up to external power.  And to make sure I can hook up to any available power, I carry both 15 to 30 AMP and 50 to 30 AMP power converters as well.  That way I can hook up at home, or to a 50 AMP socket if that’s all that’s available at a campground.

Charley has given us so much, we decided to give something to him too.  A roof to cover his head.  After looking at a variety of covers, we decided that as nice as they are, we didn’t want to go through the hassle of removing it every time we wanted to go for spin in our motorhome.  RV Metal Carport-1So we invested in a high-quality, heavy-grade steel carport.  It keeps the motorhome clean and cool in the summer, and keeps the snow off in the winter.

So that’s it for now, but as you all know, accessorizing your Class B is a bit of a never-ending story.  There are so many clever things you can buy to make your life easier on the road.  Fortunately for us, Charley can only hold so many of them.

13 Responses

  1. Heck, I should take advantage of some of these ideas for my HOUSE, Kevin! Some good ones here. And I think it’s really important to have things attractive as well as convenient when you’re going to be living on the go as much as you’ve been doing. We were sure impressed. It really IS a homey home away from home.

  2. I recently was introduced to your blog which I really enjoy. My husband and I live in Los Gatos and just bought our third Roadtrek. We’ve done a lot of traveling in our treks. Our latest purchase is a CS-Adventurous with many new bells and whistles including solar, and engine generators. I documents our trips with photograph as well. So today’s blog was very useful as we are starting to stock our CS. I live your towel rack and the towel rod. The interior of the Sprinter is so nice I’m buying some new items. We bought the silicone ice cube tray about three years ago and love them. We make our morning coffee with a plastic cone to hold the coffee grounds above our thermos travel cups. Pretty easy.

    What brand of screens did you buy for the passenger and driver windows? I’m looking at screens now. We used Skreenz in our Roadtrek 210P and may use them again in the Sprinter. But I first want to find out what others use.

    Thanks for all the info . . . keep it coming.

    1. Hi Barbara,

      Glad you liked the post. We live in Sonora, so I bet we’ll see each other on the road someday. I just put a link on my facebook post for another place that carries the wood paper towel holders. It looks like the one I bought isn’t available any more. I purchased the Skreenz screens. I’ve put them on to test them, but I haven’t put them to test yet. They go one fine and look like they’ll do the job. I got the “woodland” design as that seems to hide the inside of the van the most. Thanks again for checking out RoadShooters.

    1. Hi Bill. The Carport is 24 ft long and nearly 14 ft high in the middle (probably too high, but I wanted to make sure the sides were high enough, and it gives me room for a ladder to get access to the top). It’s also 10 wide. I would have liked it a little bit wider, but I didn’t have the room for it. It cost about $2500 and took several days to build, but it shouldn’t have taken more than a day or two. There are plenty of manufacturers who will send you a “Build-it-yourself” kit for a lot less money, but you need to have level ground, which I don’t. This thing is strong enough for two big guys to stand on top of it, which they did when they were putting it together. It comes in a variety of colors and is supposed to never rust. We’ll see about that. I really like it.

  3. Hi Kevin,

    You have convinced Andrew that one day we too will have our own Roadtrek. I like all the tips you’ve included in this one!

  4. Hi – and thanks for these great tips! At night when you put the dark shades down – how to you block out the cab? Is there another curtain?

    1. Hi Steve,

      Sorry I haven’t written anything in so long. We moved to Oregon this year, and we’re still figuring out the best places to camp and photograph. It’s a bit overwhelming. The Roadtrek has curtains that cover all of the front windows. You can take that one step further and purchase windshield sun shades made for the Sprinter Van. Those are nice to have in the summer. I believe some folks have hung a curtain on a suspension rod across the back of the cab, but I’ve never seen the need.

  5. We are BRAND NEW to this Where in OR do you live? Need lots of advice on our new purchase of a used 2007 RT Agile. Hope to make contact.

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