Hello Scamp Owners,
we are new to this Forum, and this is our first post. Early this year, we finally made the step to upgrade our tent and ordered a scamp 13'. Unfortunately, it will be ready to pick up in December and we don't want to wait until spring to get it. Therefore, We plan to pick it up in December, if the weather is not too bad. Since we have to go almost 1500 miles to get back home, we also plan a little road trip. The problem is of course the weather, it will be probably really cold up there and we would like to know what are the low temperature limits to still enjoy the scamp. We ordered a 13ft with the bath, a furnace, and the heatstrip. What would be the lowest outside temperature to safely use the sink, and/or the toilet and get water in the waste water tanks (We will but RV antifreeze in the tanks anyway). Also, in the wintertime, the dump stations at the campgrounds will be probably out of order. Is it a bad idea to pull the trailer with water in the tanks?
Is there a all year campground near the factory? When we pick it up, and will be ready to go, it will be probably too late to hit the road.
We also ordered the electric brake. When does a brake controller puts out voltage to the brake? Does the brake gets power to open it, or does it actually brakes when it gets power? I ask this because I installed the brake controller in our Nissan Murano, but I have no chance to test it. So, if it does not work right, will we still be able to pull the Scamp without using the brake controller (and the trailer electric brakes)?
Karl and Anita
Scamp water systems can not be used in winter. Both gray and black drains are on the outside, gray tank is outside, and the wet bath pump is outside.
The brakes apply when 12 volts is applied. You will want the brakes in the mountains.
ALSO: There is no need to go though Chicago. See map. Still one or two tolls but a nice relaxing drive.
Your camper won't have had any water in it when you pick it up and you'll be best to leave it that way until (if) you are out of freezing temperatures. Treat your new Scamp like a glorified tent for the first part of your trip. Bring a water jug and keep anything you don't want to freeze in your tow vehicle when you're on the road. Unlike your tent, you'll be warm enough at night with your furnace. Campgrounds (at least here in Wisconsin) are required to provide you with a toilet (could be a vault toilet) and potable water source any time they are open for camping. That said they are still hard to find. I know of a couple state parks in Wisconsin that are open with electric sites, if that would fit in your plans.
The good folks at Eveland's will help you check to make sure your connections between your camper and vehicle are working before you leave their lot. If your brake controller isn't working, they can probably help get you to the right place to fix it. If not, they can help you make sure it isn't connected at all and you can drive home without the camper brakes. It can be done - it isn't relaxing with that much weight pushing your tow vehicle when you stop, but it can be done. (I speak from experience. My brake wiring was cut too short during manufacturing and disconnected while I was traveling. I drove from Livingston Montana to Circleville Utah without camper brakes, mountains and all. I was glad to finally have a chance to fix them, but did ok without.)
Enjoy your trip and your new Scamp!
December pickup should work with some planning. First, check the 10-day weather forecast for Brainerd, MN, which is the closest city to Scamp, and perhaps forecast for Minneapolis. Because you camp in a tent, you should be fine temperature-wise in a Scamp. They are very tight and have great furnaces. I would recommend taking warm sleeping bags and blankets. I also recommend a carbon monoxide detector if you run the furnace. The furnace is a direct vent so it shouldn't use air from inside and it should exhaust to the outside. However, I am super cautious because I have had acquaintances who have got CO poisoning due to heaters in houses, bathrooms, fish houses, etc. I also carry an electric heater for when I am plugged into electricity. Your biggest worry will be snow and ice on roads. Minnesota is very good and quick at clearing snow and sanding roads, but figure a little lead time (I lived there for 30 years). I think your electric brake controller will work fine. Your trailer will be easy to tow. I bought a used 16-ft Deluxe in Minnesota and towed it 1000 miles with a van and no brake controller. The van and trailer braked fine. Then, I bought a used SUV with a brake controller and it works fine without much adjusting. I agree with other people about carrying a water jug in the SUV and using the water for brushing teeth, drinking, or cooking. Because you won't have water to flush your toilet, I recommend putting plastic bags for porta potties in your toilet, and then disposing of the plastic bags and waste. With respect to camping spots, maybe someone on the Forum can help. Otherwise, check the Internet and see what State Parks and KOAs are open for the winter. You can also stay at most Cracker Barrels (call first) and some super Walmarts. Have fun
You can buy this 7 pin tester to test you brake signal. I live in Mechanicsville and we always go that route. It may be slightly longer but you save on turnpike tolls and you miss Chicago. Also there are not many campgrounds near the turnpikes. Up north in Mn. it's only dry camping after 1 Oct. if you can even find a campground open. Like others have stated watch the long term weather. We usually make a loop and come back through the UP but not this time of the year. I would pick up the trailer and get south ASAP. I would have them squirt grease in the easy lubes before hitting the road. Factory bearing grease can some times be a little light. Make sure you have a jack for the trailer and a set of deep sockets and wrench. The lug nuts can be different on the trailer and the spare. I would also buy and carry a 1/2" torque wrench from Harbor Freight to retighten your lug nuts.
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You should check with the service dept for correct torque of the lug nuts. on the leipert axles. I found listings from 80 up to 100 ft lb on these small 1/2 studs depending on wheel size and that makes little sense as the studs are the same. Ours did not settle in the first 200 miles but some do and a retorque is a good safety check.
2019 Scamp 13 standard
Thank you for all your posts. We picked our new toy up, and everything went well. Scamp was very cooperative to adjust our pick up day, so we could travel in a winter storm free window and had just some icy roads (Which are a little challenge in order to adjust the brake controller). On our way back, we stopped at several state parks (Minneopa SP/MN, Mississippi Palisades SP/IL, East Fork SP/OH, Hungry Mother SP/VA) and had a great time. The furnace works really well. We just have to figure out if something is wrong with the thermostat, because it is very slow acting. On our first stop at Minneopa SP, we had a starting inside temperature of 30 Degrees and it took almost three hours for the thermostat to reach the temperature of 70 Degrees (Even though the furnace heated the scamp in two minutes up to a toasty temperature). Maybe there is some moisture in the sensor. However, we had this issue every day. Thank you again for all of your tips and hints, they were very helpful and we appreciate it. We are looking forward to future adventures.
Happy new year
Karl and Anita
We used to love the Camp Bursen (? So) one in the flat when daughter was small. Hopefully we too can visit that park after we get our Scamp! Enjoy your new adventures!