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Who knows about RVs?

Old 11-13-2011, 06:40 PM
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Considering getting a motorhome for what seems to be an increasing number of trips from 250 to 450 miles to see family members. Having a throne withing a few seconds of feeling the need is the incentive, 'cause if Momma ain't happy.......

We wouldn't ever travel the USA or go to NASCAR races and live in it, so not a lot of miles would be put on it, nor would we need the multiple slides that are offered...and it would seem that a 30' would do just fine. Gasser is less money and that saving would likely pay the fuel bills.

What MPG could we expect from a 30' gasser that's less than 10 years old? I'd also like a brand that's easy to sell in case we get the bug to do more than just bee-line to one house or the old folks home. Any brands to stay with, or to avoid?
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Old 11-13-2011, 06:58 PM
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Rick, I think you and I are of the same thread. I bought one yesterday in Pcola. I bought a 94' gasser Damon Intruder Series. The previous owner said it gets about 6mpg up to Tennessee and 8mpg on the way back for an average of 6mpg. Go figure. The wife is stoked and the my boy is ready to go camping. We plan on going to local campgrounds and maybe some rock climbing trips in Alabama and Hot Springs. Let me know if you have some questions because I have been rooting though Craigs list and ebay for two weeks looking for a good one. Good luck
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Old 11-13-2011, 07:01 PM
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We've had one or another, since 1987; gassers and later, a diesel. You'll probably get somewhere around 8 mpg, +/-, depending on your driving habits and what you might be draggin' behind you.

There's some decent motorhome-specific forums that you could drop in on; IRV2.com/forums , RV.net/forum , FMCA.com , RVNetwork.com are a few. Look for individual forums for the type of RV, and the type of RV'ing that you are interested in.

Like with boats, it's a buyer's market, so you should be able to get a good deal.

regards to brand, I would recommend you look into any of the units built by Winnebago Industries for a couple reasons:

They are built with a steel roll-cage around the driver/passenger compartment, which provides a better measure of protection to the occupants. They bolt all of their appliances and cabinets thru the steel wall studs, so that they will stay in place during a rollover. Winnebago has made a video of them dropping a 31' motorhome upside-down, from 10' height, on to concrete. Everything stayed in place. They also have a steel firewall, seperating the engine compartment from the coach. Some manufacturers use a thin plywood "firewall".

Winnebago provides, at no cost to the owner, a complete set of wiring diagrams, plumbing diagrams, and cross-section drawings of the the walls, roof, etc, even for older units, all downloadable in pdf format, from their website. They also stamp every wire, every 6", with a unique wire number, that can be found on their diagrams, so trouble-shooting or adding aftermarket accys, os easy to do.

They have a one-piece fiberglass roof, not a failure-prone rubber roof.

Winnebago installs they windshields by bedding them on to the steel frame, just like the auto industry. Most other manufacturers cut a hole in the front cap, and install the windshield in a big rummer grommet. That method is prone to leak, and pop out when the RV frame twists, from un-even driveways, and when leveling.

Do you research, and decide what is important to you.

Last edited by CaptWill; 11-13-2011 at 07:14 PM.
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Old 11-13-2011, 07:32 PM
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My father went with the tow behind trailers, pop-ups, 30' motor coaches, gas and diesel. Settled on a Winnebago View which is diesel, 20 mpg+-, easy to drive, has a slide out but is relatively small - but worked for him and mom. I drove it to a few of my daughters games and was impressed. Small worked for him.
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Old 11-13-2011, 07:51 PM
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If you are making 500mi (1000 mi total) trips one way at 8 mpg thats 125 gal or so....approx what...400 bucks or so...there are lots of high top vans built just for getting there....maybe 15-16 mpg...comfy and cheaper
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Old 11-13-2011, 08:01 PM
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Our last one was a 34' Fleetwood with a 454. We got 8MPG towing a car behind and 8MPG with no car. I could not be happier with the 454. I put about 20000 miles on it and never had 1 problem with it. It also had a basement. The worst milage we ever saw was with a 40mph quartering cross wind, it droped to about 6mpg, and I was white knuckeled driving it in those conditions, but all the 18 wheelers were in the same boat. I slowed down to about 45 and all was good. As other have said you can pick up a really nice one in this economy,
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Old 11-13-2011, 08:01 PM
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If you plan to travel a lot, you'll probably be happier with a non-slideout unit. Slideouts cost more and are ideally suited for people who go somewhere and stay for a while. They can really intrude on interior space when closed and diminish the ability for people to use the kitchen or head while traveling. The also a notorious for leaking. Just contemplate the idea of pulling in the slide(s) in during or after a rainstorm.

Basement storage and a decent bathroom are important.

You may also be surprised at how much you do use it. Let's see now, there's a Robert Trent Jones Trail somewhere that is an ideal motorhome trip. Fishing rods and Clubs in the basement, bourbon in the cupboards - what's not to like?
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Old 11-13-2011, 09:20 PM
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The best RV's.

Tipsy
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Old 11-13-2011, 10:12 PM
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Originally Posted by TipsyMcStagger View Post
Nice, but where do you pee and how do you get to someone's house?
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Old 11-13-2011, 10:30 PM
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Originally Posted by TipsyMcStagger View Post
I agree! The only way to travel
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Old 11-14-2011, 04:48 AM
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Originally Posted by TipsyMcStagger View Post

...I had a Cessna during flight training. Afterward I asked the admiral why she didn't like to fly with me, and she said she liked bigger planes. I LOVE that woman and got a 172, thinking that she and the boys could now fit into the plane.
Told her what I'd done and she said, "...by bigger plane I meant one with an aisle and stews, and you (Mr. ADD man) not at the controls."

I sold that plane, too
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Old 11-14-2011, 04:52 AM
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Originally Posted by slickster View Post
If you are making 500mi (1000 mi total) trips one way at 8 mpg thats 125 gal or so....approx what...400 bucks or so...there are lots of high top vans built just for getting there....maybe 15-16 mpg...comfy and cheaper

That's about where I am this morning. The Jag gets 30MPG, so spending 4X more for fuel would make me weak-kneed; at least until her first emergency that passed (no pun intended) without the least bit of drama.
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Old 11-14-2011, 05:04 AM
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just remember its not just going to be the cost of fuel, you will have registration fees and insurance and all that goes along with owning a land yatch. We had a 27 foot gulfstream class c, It was very nice plenty of room but if you are not going to use it at least once a month, at least for us it was hard to justify another insurance payment on top of the loan we were paying,
.
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Old 11-14-2011, 07:22 AM
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Rick,
Drivable requires insurance as another vehicle while towables need insurance, but not nearly as expensive. There are some nice slide ins available as well.
When you have a motor home, once you have reached your stopping point, every time you want to go somewhere you have to disconnect everything, and re-level and reconnect when you get back. That is unless you have another vehicle to use. Just throwing in info.
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Old 11-14-2011, 05:22 PM
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Today I stopped at a couple of RV shops and compared models. A tow-behind is out, because it pretty much negates the reason for having a rolling porta potti. Momma would just as soon try to wait for the next exit as having us stop on the side of the interstate so she could skoot back to a tow-behind.

Class A is pretty big and diesel power is off the budget at this point.

Class C. Looked at a 30' box on an F450 chassis and no slide-outs. I think that for the first rolling home, this would be fine. Two dealers gave two different opinions about fuel economy, though. One said a Class C was around 12MPG, while the other said it was equal or less than a Class A.

Anybody know for fact?
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Old 11-14-2011, 05:45 PM
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A 30 foot box on an F450 chassis is a pretty substantial rig and a huge step up from the old cutaway vans that were made into class C's. I assume the 450 is a diesel, so it will also tow about anything under the sun. Because of the aerodynamics, the fuel burn gets worse as the speed increases. My motorhome is perfectly happy at about 80 MPH, but it is eating dinosaurs at a horrific pace. Can you drive 55? If so, you'll get decent numbers. They won't be great, but I think you'll find the convenience to be worth it.

No one is going to pretend that a motorhome makes any more sense than an airplane or a boat. You can fly an airline for less than your own plane, just as charters are probably cheaper than owning a boat. But if it is enjoyable, why not? As far as I know, this is not a dress rehearsal.

Need justification on the homefront? Just bring home bedbugs from a motel stay.
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Old 11-14-2011, 06:24 PM
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I spent almost a year looking. Crawled through a bunch of RVs - thought I would be happy with a C. Then I drove both. Without question the A wins hands down in this department. Seeing Over everyone rather than being in a pickup seeing (or trying) through everyone... no comparison. I bought an older (94) A, enjoying the wrenching, and never looked back. We love our Bounder!
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Old 11-14-2011, 09:08 PM
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I bought a leftover class c off ebay for 35k four years ago.

It has turned into the best purchase I have EVER made.

It started out as little camping trips, but with a wife, a dog, and a ten year old, once I got used to driving it, we started driving it to all the school football games, to the grandparents, etc.

Then we got adventurous and drove it to Alaska. Now we're really hooked. Drove BACK to alaska the following summer, and last summer we lived in it at the marina where we keep our boat.

Over 60k miles, over 300 nights "camping". Over 25 national parks. 40 states. Not a single breakdown, nor a single issue. Imagine saying that about a boat!!

Now you're probably wondering how the heck we afford this. Well, having a motor home lets us rent out our home during the summer, and that pays for all the gas, expenses and much more.

You may not use it this much, but then again you might!!

FYI I have Chateau model 28a. 29 feet long (fits in 2 spaces). 8 cyl. workhorse chassis, get 10-11 mpg. No slideouts.
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Old 11-15-2011, 04:45 AM
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I'm thinking a THT RV Raftup, going the weekend of Thanksgiving to Jellystone. Anyone game
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