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Old 10-23-2010, 08:28 AM   #71
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Originally Posted by Wingding View Post
Stan,

Well.. I'll approach it like this...

Do you plan to #1 park it somewhere and seldom move or do you plan to #2 ride the wheels off of it?

If your answer is #1 .. Buy a different brand.. Some put more attention to inside the living quarter's details, and if you will seldom move, the Alpine's advantage will not be utilized.

Now if your gonna ride the wheels off your motorhome.... Buy a ALPINE.

You will NEVER find a better riding coach.. NEVER... Not even Newell...

So with that said, it is definitely true that one of the owner's biggest wishes was to have a motorhome ride like a BMW.... and I got to tell you...If ever a Motorhome road like a BMW .... ALPINE achieved it..
I road them all..
But I was very perplexed.... ? I wanted the Newell style and thought out inside living quarters... But I wanted the best ride to!

What I found was I could not have them both... SO as a first time owner, I had to make a decision... and it's all about the RIDE.... Kind of like the german word "fafingnugin" {which is horribly misspelled} but you get my drift...
I decided i can make some adjustments to the inside of my motorhome as I am quite handy and have volumes of woodworking tools {Shop} and can fabricate much.
But I could NEVER change the ride..... and that Alpine ride....... Nothing could beat it... I had to keep looking out the mirror to make sure it was a motorhome and not SUV or something...
Thanks for that Wingding..

Being a career mechanic..and in later years, equipment dealer, the suspension and mechanical aspect of the motorhome was my first priority. The cream always rises to the top...and after a while when the whistles and bells wear off...if you realize you have a Hyundai of a suspension/chassis...instead a honey of a suspension/chassis, I would be kicking myself every time I wrote that payment check.

I was just hoping that what information I had been able to gather in a short time was correct...and not find out later that there was a better driving something for the same or less money.

I did indeed buy the 40"2001 Alpine...and just had two new tires put on the front yesterday. I also had the back four checked and balanced, and made sure they had good date codes (1906).

I had one one inside rear that had been run flat and scuffed its partner...I got rid of those. It made a huge difference...now it drives like a new coach..Wow, is all I can say..just WOW!

I appreciate your post...because it is by far the most positive post I have seen regarding how good the Alpine is in comparison to "all" others. Naturally that is very good to know especially since I did pull the trigger and go with an Alpine.

You said you road them all. I assume you transport them or have in the past, on a business level. Would that be correct?

Many thanks again..
Best regards..Stan M.
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Old 10-23-2010, 09:20 AM   #72
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Well actually Stan, I have a lot of free time. So in 2005 I went down to Arizona and spent 3 month's riding every motorhome known.

I did not get in a Terra { the one that rides like a boat on water} would that ever be a trip...

"OK Folks" The motorhome is now gonna take a swim for everyone"

Other than that, I probably been in them all.

When your going to buy one.... You can spend as much time driving as many as you want.It's pretty much on how much free time you have available.

The course was always the same. Right outta Mesa, down the highway. Was about a 55 miles round trip..
One after another.. day by day and week by week... I just kept visiting more dealers.

I never even heard of the Alpine... But it was NEVER more obvious... After that ride which came early in the 3 month ride search.... After that I was always trying to find something that rode and handled like the Alpine...

Just could not find one.... Then I figured maybe it was just a really good, non windy day and all the elements were just right... SO I took the Alpine on a second venture on a horrible windy winter day in Arizona... Actually had a small twister{a bunch of tumbleweeds followed by a visible column of spinning dirt crossing the highway at that exact moment...
I figured I was going to get jerked one way or another.... But that Alpine cut through that twister like it was not even there... I know a few other coaches that would have been ALL OVER THE PLACE....or worse...

Cant beat that coach for the ride....That is it's HOLY GRAIL...

When you hire a NASCAR Engineer who establishes his own chassis shop for this motorhome.....How in the world can you beat that..???
The chassis for this motorhome was created to do just what it does...

How many other motorhomes build their own chassis ? Not many at all.

This motorhome was HELL BENT on the ride.... It cant be beat...

Thats where all the effort was focused....
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Old 10-23-2010, 09:35 AM   #73
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Originally Posted by Wingding View Post
Well actually Stan, I have a lot of free time. So in 2005 I went down to Arizona and spent 3 month's riding every motorhome known.

I did not get in a Terra { the one that rides like a boat on water} would that ever be a trip...

"OK Folks" The motorhome is now gonna take a swim for everyone"

Other than that, I probably been in them all.

When your going to buy one.... You can spend as much time driving as many as you want.It's pretty much on how much free time you have available.

The course was always the same. Right outta Mesa, down the highway. Was about a 55 miles round trip..
One after another.. day by day and week by week... I just kept visiting more dealers.

I never even heard of the Alpine... But it was NEVER more obvious... After that ride which came early in the 3 month ride search.... After that I was always trying to find something that rode and handled like the Alpine...

Just could not find one.... Then I figured maybe it was just a really good, non windy day and all the elements were just right... SO I took the Alpine on a second venture on a horrible windy winter day in Arizona... Actually had a small twister{a bunch of tumbleweeds followed by a visible column of spinning dirt crossing the highway at that exact moment...
I figured I was going to get jerked one way or another.... But that Alpine cut through that twister like it was not even there... I know a few other coaches that would have been ALL OVER THE PLACE....or worse...

Cant beat that coach for the ride....That is it's HOLY GRAIL...

When you hire a NASCAR Engineer who establishes his own chassis shop for this motorhome.....How in the world can you beat that..???
The chassis for this motorhome was created to do just what it does...

How many other motorhomes build their own chassis ? Not many at all.

This motorhome was HELL BENT on the ride.... It cant be beat...

Thats where all the effort was focused....

What got me started..was driving a Alpine that belonged to a cousin a couple of years ago. I was really impressed...in fact got the pusher bug.

I drove as many as I could find around here that were in my price range...or even a consideration since I was buying a "Pre-owned". (Sounds better than "Used", I guess..ha!)
I had just about decided that I didn't evenwant one...my gas rig drove as good as many of them, and it was paid for.

Then this Alpine came comming up on Craigs List, which I ignored. Then I saw it a copuple of weeks later and discovered a dealer nearby was teh one advertising it. Decided to go look at it on A nice Saturday moring ...and the rest is history.

I can't believe we found one that easy...and the $54K price, that I finally got them to take. It looks like a 2 year old coach.

I'm especially galad to hear of your efforts to narrow down te choices..I didn't have that kind of opportunity to be sure. Whew! I'm relieved.

Stan...
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Old 10-23-2010, 09:59 AM   #74
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Sure glad you didnt buy a Monterrey or something ... I guess i would not comment...
Anybody that gets into that thing.... get ready, cause your going to be ALL OVER THE PLACE...and I dont mean traveling...

I had to fight to keep that thing on the road. AFTER 55 MILES, I was exhausted... I could not imagine driving that thing 1000 miles...
tried a different one..same exact thing....

As far as the inner layout, it was far superior in my humble estimation... But what good is that when your worn out and nerve stressed from the ride.

Thats why I say, if your gonna pretty much "Park" it.... dont buy a Alpine... BUT if your gonna "RIDE IT"

There's not a better choice out there.
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Old 10-24-2010, 01:32 AM   #75
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Wingding:

I fell in love with the FDTS layout back in '03. I was basing my comparisons on that coach for several years. I finally found my Alpine, in that configuration and even lucked out on the exterior color I had chosen earlier. I picked it up in '07 and am still comparing it to new coaches. Haven't found one better, save a CC Prevost conversion at $1.7M. Plus, someone else ate up the depreciation.

We went to the CA RV Show in Pomona last week and saw the "latest and greatest". I'm still happy with my now 8 year old coach. The 42' Itasca Eclipse had a good layout, but no ride comparison, and the price was ridiculous. Tiffin's 42' Bus has a good layout, too, and likely a good ride ala Gary Evans, but unless mine dies, it's not worth the price difference. Even if it does go kaput, I'll be shopping for another Alpine to replace it, no doubts.
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Old 10-24-2010, 02:45 AM   #76
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Wingding, we looked at three different ones the day we decided to jump. We looked at a 36' FDTS, and they wanted more for that one than the other two 40's, one being the APEX we ended up with, and the other was a FDQS, in cinnabark, and I hated the colors inside, it's where you live. We had always heard that the Alpine drove better than anyone else's coach. Well after going all the way from Washington to Florida and Back, that is a true statement. Some 400+ mile days did tire me out, but it was not bad driving across Wyoming with a stiff side wind the whole way, it handles really great. There are things I would change, but not our floor plan unless a small slide forward of the entry door, but I will make do. I like the mid door better than any of the other floor plans as we like the big kitchen. One day when I get real ambitious, I am going to maybe change the stove, but for now I'm going to live with it.
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Old 10-25-2010, 11:18 AM   #77
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Stan,

Congratulations on your purchase. Now that you bought it, time to join ACA and head to the Wurstfest rally!
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Old 10-29-2010, 01:09 PM   #78
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Stan,
I have a 2001 Alpine 40FDS. Bought it new and have had very few problems. I haven't had the problems with brake fluid, etc posted here. The only issue I have and it seems to be a problem for many, is the ABS light staying on. The diagnostics says right rear sensor however everything checks out fine. I've even had the coach up on the jacks and checked output of each sensor by spinning the wheels. I do have another black box that I've installed but have not taken the coach out for a drive yet to see if that is the problem. Additionally, the blink switch was defective, mechanically broken internally. Replaced it but was not the cause of the light staying on.

One more problem was deterioration of two hoses that go from the fuel filler to the tank. They are 2 inch rubber hoses and mine would seep fuel when the tank was filled. Both were weather cracked badly and I had to replace both.
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Old 10-29-2010, 02:35 PM   #79
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Hey thanks everyone..

This forum has already been a great help to me. RV folks are always some great people it seems. I look forward to being part of the Alpine bunch...the more I fiddle with my "new to me" Alpine the prouder I am of it.

So far, (knock on wood) no skeletons in the closet to amount to much. A few nitpicky things...but over all it is has every sign of being a first rate coach in great condition.

I have some pics in my picture file that I haven't figured out how to post yet...we have been so busy this last week I just didn't have time to learn how. I'm lousy at that kind of thing anyway..and hate the hassle.

Here's things that I have found that the coach needs other than standard lubrication maintenance....and I may have the front end alligned, since the front tires are new.

I bought two new front tires..as per another post.

I have decided to replace the main recliner..it looks good , but is uncomfortable and a bit on the large side. So we have decided to have a better recliner upholstered in matching ultraleather (we have a ultraleather fabric match from a local upholstery supplier.)

The slide topper needs replacing...brackets are there.

I'm going to mount the new 26" LCD tv in another fashion than it is. I believe that I'm going to make the center TV cabinet into a shelved unit to hold the DVD player, the Dish receiver, the splitter box etc. (anchored with industrial velcro), like modular home units are displayed. That will give a line of sight for all the remotes "without" an open cabinet door, and can be trimmed out nicely and easily. Then I'm going to mount the LCD TV under the cabinet with a flip down mount that will position the TV nearer to eye level and closer to the windshield. Having the TV lower and farther back will enable the co-captains chair to be used to watch TV as well as the couch and recliner. The wife and I will both have a chair that way. I don't think this would work with all coaches ...but the 2001 model has a "large" center tv cabinet that an underside TV mount will flip up against quite nicely...in fact it is already padded on the bottom of that cabinet. (between the wood and the LCD screen).

There are very few mechanical issues that I have found. The ABS light comes and goes...?..but the brakes work great. Fuel filler neck has a small split next to the cap. The engine has a tiny oil leak at the front crank seal...two or three drops on the concrete in 3 days. Not bad for a diesel! The rest of the engine is dusty and dry..

That's it...the outside is almost without blemish, shines like new paint. Not a sign of water damage anywhere in the coach. It even smells good inside, sorta like leather, even though ultraleather is not real leather...

Now if it just gives good service for a while without any issues...we will be tickled pink..

Stan...
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Old 10-29-2010, 06:06 PM   #80
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Stan, try to see if cummins will fix the crankshaft seal as a "good faith Repair", although mine was under warranty, they called it that when it had to be done a second time.

The ABS light is because one of the wheels/wire bundle is a little too tight when you turn the front wheels one way or the other. Take it to a hugh parking lot, with the light no one, and then only in drive with idle speed, turn the wheels one way all the way to the stop and back the other way until the light comes on. Then you know which wheel, in my case it's my front left. Then go under the coach with it up somehow so it won't crush you if you hit the air leveling system levers, and try to free a little space in the loom so it won't pull the sensor out again.

Good luck on the TV stuff.
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Old 10-29-2010, 06:18 PM   #81
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Stan, try to see if cummins will fix the crankshaft seal as a "good faith Repair", although mine was under warranty, they called it that when it had to be done a second time.

The ABS light is because one of the wheels/wire bundle is a little too tight when you turn the front wheels one way or the other. Take it to a hugh parking lot, with the light no one, and then only in drive with idle speed, turn the wheels one way all the way to the stop and back the other way until the light comes on. Then you know which wheel, in my case it's my front left. Then go under the coach with it up somehow so it won't crush you if you hit the air leveling system levers, and try to free a little space in the loom so it won't pull the sensor out again.

Good luck on the TV stuff.


Hey Monty how's it going. Are you still at home? ...or on the road?

Thanks for the ABS tip ..I'll do that.

Was your coach in warranty on the good faith repair the second time? If so they were still obligated wern't they?

How old was the coach then?

Was there a recall on those seals..or was it ever a common issue?

Stan..
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Old 10-31-2010, 04:32 PM   #82
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Rear air dam

Stan:
Just take a few minutes and go up a ladder and check your rear air dam for looseness. It is a simple fix if it is loose and a relatively easy fix if the brackets have fatigued and cracked in the corners. It is very expensive if it comes off ont Interstate.
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Old 10-31-2010, 05:11 PM   #83
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Stan the warranty on the engine from the manfacturer is 5 years or 150,000 miles I believe. So it was in warranty, and for that matter still is, however, the cooling system, the alternator, and maybe the PTO hookup is not, EM will know on the PTO thing. So since I had the alternator go out, it was up to me to fix it since WRV is gone. Actually, I enjoyed the repair, not the cost however, but the repair was kinda of nice, and I feel closer to the coach now knowing more about how to fix things on it. Suppose the thing is going to feel like a child over time, since they never seem to go away, just hit you from different angles with different problems. Yes we are on the road, in Nicholas, CA currently.

And Sid is correct about the air dam on the rear of the coach. I check mine about once a quarter, and there are several posts on how to make it better. Mine was fine the last time I checked it, and did not see any cracks in it. I am not aware of any mileage number which might be an indicator on when it goes bad. I also don't know if every coach is affected.
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Old 10-31-2010, 06:04 PM   #84
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Stan:
Just take a few minutes and go up a ladder and check your rear air dam for looseness. It is a simple fix if it is loose and a relatively easy fix if the brackets have fatigued and cracked in the corners. It is very expensive if it comes off ont Interstate.
Sid

Ok Sid thanks for that..

I would have never thought to check it.

I take it that they come loose some times...I bet it would be expensive to repair, especially if it banged around a little before it totally turned loose.

Stan...
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