The Challenge

16I’ve purchased an insurance-totalled 2004 Trailmanor 3023 at a “you can afford to mess it up” price. It belonged to someone in Indiana. It must have been well-kept before it got those hail dents on the roof, which seem to be cosmetic rather than structural, and spent close to a year on an auction lot. It looks pretty good and seems to be ready to use. Obviously there are some issues:

  • I’ve got to buy a tow vehicle! Probably a 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4×4 with factory class-4 tow package.
  • Not every insurance company likes to insure recovered salvage. But I spoke with the underwriter (not the sales person) at my local California AAA, which has been my auto insurer since 1990, and they will insure it.
  • I will need to get it to a DMV or CHP office to inspect it before it can be registered. They are mostly making sure the lights work.
  • One of the roof halves might be at the end of its torsion bar adjustment range. It’s not difficult to lift as it is, but if I can’t get any more range, that half might not be able to tolerate any body work and it will stay a “dented darling”.
  • There are some fabric tears and some dirt to clean up.
  • The wardrobe is missing.
  • The clock is missing (we won’t need it).
  • The fabric curtains need replacement.
  • The shower curtain needs replacement.

I am more than competent at electrical wiring, and am handy in general. Sometimes it seems like I own every tool known to man. I’m pretty confident that this will be fun and usable for my family, even if I can’t do anything about those hail dents in the roof.

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