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Old 05-17-2018, 03:18 PM   #1
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Installing a range to replace a cooktop

I'm looking at a used Itasca to buy and it only has a cooktop range. My wife wants an oven if we buy it. They're available for $4-500 and it looks not too hard to cut out the drawers below and install a whole new unit. Has anyone done it and is it an easy install? It also looks like I could keep the same countertop cover arrangement.Thanks
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Old 05-18-2018, 11:46 PM   #2
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Before you go through the hassle, look at going with a convection microwave. You’ll get mixed reviews on the gas ovens, but my guess is that about 70% don’t get used because of uneven temps, heating up the inside, etc.

In fact, I’m looking at the opposite. I want to replace mine with a cooktop and add storage below!
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Old 05-19-2018, 04:54 AM   #3
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Before you go through the hassle, look at going with a convection microwave. Youíll get mixed reviews on the gas ovens, but my guess is that about 70% donít get used because of uneven temps, heating up the inside, etc.

In fact, Iím looking at the opposite. I want to replace mine with a cooktop and add storage below!

These small gas ovens for an RV don't do the best job, as you stated.


However for the few of us who do a lot (most of the time) dry camping and boondocking, we sure want the gas oven.



We depend on our batteries, solar panels and inverter for our 120V power needs and you can't run the convection/microwave for "cooking" without running the generator.



We do use the microwave for heating things up, baking a potato, defrosting something, etc, but running the convection oven for 30 minutes to an hour to cook something is not practical when you are living w/o shore power and do not want to run the generator.
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Old 05-19-2018, 05:07 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by jerrybb View Post
I'm looking at a used Itasca to buy and it only has a cooktop range. My wife wants an oven if we buy it. They're available for $4-500 and it looks not too hard to cut out the drawers below and install a whole new unit. Has anyone done it and is it an easy install? It also looks like I could keep the same countertop cover arrangement.Thanks

As you say, it doesn't look like to big a job to sway out the cooktop for the range.



Here is a selection of ranges I am looking at: https://www.pplmotorhomes.com/parts/...vens-rv-ranges


It will probably be September before I get to the project.



We just bought a 2006 Journey to replace our Sightseer and I will be replacing the cooktop, just as you are planning to do. The Journey came with a dishwasher below the cooktop. I'm going to yank the dishwasher out and drop in a new range.



I am going to install the 21" high range for a little extra room and I think the ability to have a little broiler room under the burner. The 17" range is pretty small.
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Old 05-19-2018, 09:24 AM   #5
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We've had ovens in two travel trailers and used them very little. They're a hassle and don't work that well. They are, however a good place to store pots and pans.

Why use a broiler if you can use a BBQ? Personally I don't want that mess inside.

If you're set on doing it, it certainly is a relatively easy DIY job. A small pizza stone in the bottom will help even out your temperatures.

Our new-to-us 2002 motorhome has a convection/microwave that we haven't used yet.
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Old 05-19-2018, 11:33 AM   #6
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Our experience has been almost the opposite. In our '02 we have the full oven plus the convection microwave. The bride has rarely used the convection but often uses the gas oven. The one I'm looking at today has the cooktop only with the micro/conv above. We'll see, maybe if i get it she'll try the convection and see if it works for her. We do boondock occasionally so the gas oven would be a help there for sure.
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Old 05-19-2018, 04:41 PM   #7
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We've had ovens in two travel trailers and used them very little. They're a hassle and don't work that well. They are, however a good place to store pots and pans.

Why use a broiler if you can use a BBQ? Personally I don't want that mess inside.

If you're set on doing it, it certainly is a relatively easy DIY job. A small pizza stone in the bottom will help even out your temperatures.

Our new-to-us 2002 motorhome has a convection/microwave that we haven't used yet.
Not sure how long you have been in "your new-to-you" MH, but it really sounds like you don't do a lot of cooking in the RV.



We cook almost every evening meal and most breakfasts and we use the gas oven close to 10 times more often than the convection oven. We do use the microwave frequently, just not for 15 to 20 minuet for microwave cooking.



In the end, different folks have different ways to live when traveling in an RV. Whatever is best for each of us, is what one should do.
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Old 05-19-2018, 05:40 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by al1florida View Post
Not sure how long you have been in "your new-to-you" MH, but it really sounds like you don't do a lot of cooking in the RV.
We do a lot of cooking in and outside the RV, we just don't use the oven much. Even when we had an oven, we generally used the range top and microwave, plus we BBQ (mainly covered, indirect heat) quite a bit. I do make delicious biscuits for special breakfasts, so we'll see if I do OK with either the convection oven or my Dutch oven.

So far, we've only used the convection oven once so I can't weigh in on its effectiveness one way or the other on it.

Even at home, if it's meat, it gets put on the BBQ, almost never in the oven or under the broiler (12 mo/yr in California). If we fire up the BBQ, the veggies and potatoes go on it as well.

But you're right, it all depends on your cooking style.
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Old 05-19-2018, 07:03 PM   #9
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OK, thanks for all the input...we bought the '06 Suncruiser (same as the Adventurer) and I looked at the stove setup. Piece of cake to take out two drawers and the spacer between them and the new complete stove will pop right in. Wifey says she'll try the convection for a while to see if she misses the gas oven, but either way it's an easy fix.
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Old 05-19-2018, 08:32 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by jerrybb View Post
OK, thanks for all the input...we bought the '06 Suncruiser (same as the Adventurer) and I looked at the stove setup. Piece of cake to take out two drawers and the spacer between them and the new complete stove will pop right in. Wifey says she'll try the convection for a while to see if she misses the gas oven, but either way it's an easy fix.

Congrats and enjoy the Suncruiser. I'm sure your wife will let you know which oven she wants!!
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Old 05-23-2018, 05:54 PM   #11
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RV ovens are just plain junk. They have poor temp regulation, hot spots and small capacity. They are not made for the long haul. Been there done that. If you camp during the summer, the amount of heat added to the RV will really make the A/C struggle. Suggest a counter top toaster/convection oven. That combined with a good microwave/convection will do everything you need to do. I just pulled out the gas cooktop and replaced it with an induction cooktop. Less heat, better temperature control and easy clean up.
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Old 05-23-2018, 08:35 PM   #12
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RV ovens are just plain junk. They have poor temp regulation, hot spots and small capacity. They are not made for the long haul. Been there done that. If you camp during the summer, the amount of heat added to the RV will really make the A/C struggle. Suggest a counter top toaster/convection oven. That combined with a good microwave/convection will do everything you need to do. I just pulled out the gas cooktop and replaced it with an induction cooktop. Less heat, better temperature control and easy clean up.
I agree with you about temp regulation and hotspots but I can't see ever going with an induction cooktop. I wouldn't want to be that dependent on having 120v power available and I like to minimize generator use.
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Old 05-24-2018, 05:19 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by BVThunder View Post
RV ovens are just plain junk. They have poor temp regulation, hot spots and small capacity. They are not made for the long haul. Been there done that. If you camp during the summer, the amount of heat added to the RV will really make the A/C struggle. Suggest a counter top toaster/convection oven. That combined with a good microwave/convection will do everything you need to do. I just pulled out the gas cooktop and replaced it with an induction cooktop. Less heat, better temperature control and easy clean up.
It sounds like you are comparing the small RV gas oven to a large 30" or 36" wide oven which would be found in a sticks & bricks.

We use our RV gas oven extensively. It does have its limitations, but most things have their limitations.

For a comparison to the short coming of the RV gas oven, try this:

Quote:
Why would I ever want to have an RV. Compared to my home, the RV is tiny box. It is hard to heat and cool. The air conditioner is noisy as all get out. It costs an arm and a leg to buy. Additionally it depreciates in value very day. I have to buy expensive insurance and pay to store it. Then things in it break and I have to pay someone to fix it, or maybe I am able to take away from my valuable time to fix it myself. I could stay home in my comfortable home, or if I want to go somewhere I can stay in a very nice hotel where someone makes my bed, cleans the bath everyday. I can also eat in a very nice restaurant where people cook and bring me the food. When I am finished eating they clean everything. In the end this costs me far less than the total cost of an RV. So tell me again why I want to own a RV!!!
Don't get me wrong. The only way we travel is in a RV and we love it despite the short comings. In 2016 we lived in our 29' Class for 9 months on a trip to visit family in Oregon including a 4 1/2 month trip to Alaska in the middle of the trip.

Back to the issue of a gas oven. On that 4 1/2 month trip to AK we only hooked up to electric for 2 nights and only ran our generator about 2 hours to charge our batteries once in that trip. We have solar panels and lithium batteries. Trying to cook with a convection oven instead of the gas oven would have required us to run the generator and destroy the ambiance of the quite boondocking places we stayed at.

Yes the small gas oven has its limitations, but for some of us it works far better than the electric oven or cooktop.
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Old 05-25-2018, 07:41 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by jerrybb View Post
I'm looking at a used Itasca to buy and it only has a cooktop range. My wife wants an oven if we buy it. They're available for $4-500 and it looks not too hard to cut out the drawers below and install a whole new unit. Has anyone done it and is it an easy install? It also looks like I could keep the same countertop cover arrangement.Thanks

My wife does a lot of cooking. She is very happy with the convection oven and cook top. I did replace the old Amana with a Atwood. The old stove would not light correctly.


I don't know how easy the conversion will be. This Meridian has a real bear of a steal cradle the the stove top mounts into. It is secured between the counter top and the cabinets. Made installing the new stove top a bit of a challenge.
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