We knew when we bought our 2011 Crossroads Cruiser 32' fifth wheel that we would eventually move into it and be full-timers. The fact that it was three years old was both an advantage and a concern. The advantage was that everything worked, far past the initial new RV break-in period when most mishaps occur. The concern was, besides being seven years old by the time we hit the road, that the older floor plans were not really set up for full-time living.
Each room needed upgrades, modifications and updates. I'm starting with the master bedroom and I'll work my way back over the next few parts of this blog series. I've numbered several items on the attached photos so you can see what I'm describing.
3. Battery fan with AC adapter
Definitely needed for warm summer nights.
4. Cup holders
I mounted a fold-up cup holder on either side of the bed.
5. Metal wall art (trees and a bear)
Nadyne found a piece of metal art to replace the large one we used to have over our bed in our sticks-and-bricks house.
6. White wooden cabinet
We utilized the space over the window with an inexpensive wall shelf and a couple of tension rods.
7. Mattress and bed spread
One of the things we did early on was replace the original RV mattress with a memory foam unit. We owned (and loved) a very expensive memory foam mattress before buying the fifth wheel but it was too large for the RV bed. The replacement we purchased was not as expensive but is good quality, comfortable and it fits. We wanted a little whimsy in the room and both liked the cute moose-in-the-woods bed set.
8. Bed window valances
RV window valances suck! Nadyne made these.
9. Quartz/Rock panel headboard
The bed definitely needed something to improve its appearance and the quartz laminate really classed up the room. Since the peel-and-stick panels are notorious for not coming off later, I stuck them onto a corrugated backing and put the headboard on the wall in one piece.
10. White vinyl linen cabinet
We saw this heavy-duty vinyl cabinet at an RV show and knew we could use it somewhere in the RV. In this case, we needed space for linens and had an empty spot over the bed we didn't know what to do with. The cabinet has a thin wood floor and ceiling inside and I attached it with double-sided foam tape and screws with 2" washers. After two years, it's still holding very well.
11. Wooden shelves
Never enough shelving in RV's...
12. Facial tissue holder
Installing this Kleenex box holder near the bed has been extremely convenient.
13. Fold-out hanging rod
We occasionally need extra room for hanging clothing, especially when doing laundry, and I installed a couple of retractable hanging rods that fold in flat to the wall to conserve headroom.
14. Various hooks
Like shelving, never enough clothing hooks in RV's
15. Headboard shelving
After installing the quartz-panel headboard, we thought that a couple of wooden decorative boxes and a shelf for knickknacks and souvenirs would finish the space.
16. Hanging laundry bag
With the air conditioner taking the space previously taken by a plastic laundry hamper, we had to get creative. It turns out the A/C unit is the perfect height to support the weight of a laundry bag hanging above it on the wall as it fills up. We actually have two bags and swap one out when it gets full.
17. & 18. Wire rack shelving and clothing bar
We decided we needed more options for the double-door closet that had two wooden shelves installed. I removed the shelves and replaced them with wire shelving on the right side and a clothing bar across the top for a backup spot for hanging clothes. We normally don't need the hanging space and found it was perfect for storing the vacuum cleaner, sewing supplies and other odds and ends.
19. Decorative wire bowl
This bowl is kept in place with museum gel.
20. Canvas cubes
11" canvas cubes fit perfectly across the top shelf of the closet and keep stored items from falling during travel.
21. Six-Cube cabinet
Not only did we find a cube cabinet that fits in the large closet, but I angled it back when I attached it and now clothing doesn't fall out of it. We also use canvas cubes in it to make swapping clothes in and out easier.
22. Thin clothes hangers
You'd be surprised how much more clothing you can fit in a closet when you use extra-thin hangers.
23. Bed pockets
The bed lifts up and has storage beneath it but the sides of the pedestal seemed to be wasted. The set of pockets attach across the bed frame under the mattress and hang down for filling on the sides. We use them for slippers, spare shoes and for bedtime storage of our phones (while charging), reading glasses and other items.
24. Next-to-bed protection
This baseball bat, a Louisville Slugger I got in Cooperstown, is a placeholder for our shotgun...
25. Bedroom TV
We are the kind of people who like to fall asleep to the TV (we use a timer), but there was no mounting in the room for one. I installed this LCD TV on a mounting bracket near the ceiling power and cable. There is also a pair of hooks to secure it with a bungee cord while in transit.
26. Curtains and blinds
The bedroom window treatments were not ideal and when the blinds finally broke, Nadyne replaced the entire treatment, including blinds and light-blocking curtains.
27. Decorative wood bowls
One of the very first things we did for storage in the bedroom when we bought the RV was to install these rectangular wooden bowls on the wall. Four years later, they're still holding strong and being used as mini-valets.
28. Alarm clock
We needed an alarm clock in the bedroom but unfortunately this one is AC only. We're still looking for one that is LED and battery-powered for boondocking purposes.
29. 6-way outlet
Three outlets were installed, including two by the bedsides that have USB power outlets.
30. Not Visible (behind the TV): 200W inverter and Amazon Fire Stick
The inverter has helped so we can watch TV while boondocking without the generator running, and the Amazon Fire is how we stream TV, including Amazon Prime, Netflix, YouTube, Sling and other channels.
31. Higher Hangers
For longer clothing and those that we hang in the short closet, the Higher Hangers hold the clothes about 4 inches higher off the floor.
32. Jewelry holder
In lieu of bulky jewelry boxes, we opted for a hanging holder and store it either in the closet or on one of the retractable clothes rods. No, there's nothing valuable in this holder.
Next up will be the RV entry-way. Let me know if you have any questions about any of our modifications or upgrades.
Jack Huber is a novelist with 6 mysteries published, along with several books of poetry and photography. Now retired, he and his wife, Nadyne, are free to travel the country in their 32' 5th wheel and 1-ton Ford pickup.